Television

Spies, Lies & Allies Recap: Alien

It's the weekly coverage of The Challenge!

This week our contestants got strapped on top of cars and spun around a bunch, with Kaycee and Emanuel coming out on top to become The Agency. Then everybody got drunk and Josh and Fessy got into it again, ending with Fessy doing that face shove thing that isn’t physically harmful but is insanely disrespectful. Then MTV said fuck you.

Question 1: What’s your take on the daily challenges so far this season?

TD: I’m really digging them so far. There’s been a good mix of mental and physical stuff, some stunts to fit the theme, and one serious damn challenge (Sea Cave Recon); all while requiring good teamwork to win. What we haven’t had yet is one of those smash and bangers that resembles an American Gladiator game. I love those. Let’s do one of those soon.

Blaine: I loved this daily, but it didn’t work for television. I wasn’t exactly sure what they were supposed to do; it was repetitive and hard to tell who was winning. I am looking forward to a food challenge, though. Since it doesn’t come up anywhere else in this week’s set of questions, I’ll be the one who addresses that Emy is a Romanian pop star. That makes total sense now. Completely paints the full picture.

Adam: Taken as whole, they’ve been great. I’ll even include the eliminations in that. There’s been a nice mix to keep things entertaining for us as viewers, and fair for the competitors. This week fell back into the trap that the last few seasons have veered into at times: heavy on spectacle, thin on entertaining television. I’m sure it was an amazing experience to ride on top of a Tokyo Drift vehicle, but I had trouble following the puzzle aspect, so from my couch, there wasn’t much competitive tension or drama. So on the whole good, on the week…weak.

Question 2: What’s with all the hatin’ on our girl Amber?

TD: Funny how that works, ain’t it? You win a title, and everyone starts finding reasons to try and take you out. There’s an old adage in boxing that you’re not a true champion until you successfully defend your title. Amber is now in her title defense, should be interesting to watch how she responds.

Blaine: She was catching a bit of heat at the end of last season for being “fake,” and I honestly can’t remember if she was or not. I do remember I didn’t like her much until she showed strength in the last act of the season. Fessy did blindside her, though, no matter what he says to defend himself. And Tori and Cory trying to stir the point out of what they claim to be boredom is an awful look. It reminds me of high school of that one weasel who was scared to death of everyone so he would go around and try to amp up the tempers of everyone else. “Did you know Chad said this about you!? Ohhhhhhhhh! Fight!”

Adam: Is the hate based on anything but fear? She did get blindsided, and she does deserve some respect after destroying the competition to win the final last season. I don’t understand why folks are stirring the pot here.

Question 3: Wait, what the hell?!? It’s over already?

TD: I don’t know about y’all, but I was caught off guard by the shortened runtime. It even took me a second to realize what was happening when the credits started running.

Blaine: I got pissed.

Adam: I am glad for YouTubeTV and its grid display for alerting me from the get go. It’s an interesting choice to go shorter to build drama, for a program that generally gets as much bang for its buck as possible in these situations. I’m sure that’s what they’re setting up for next week. Sixty to ninety minutes of gritty untangling and Mister Tee Jay visiting the house. Once the dust settles, I hope they are able to get back on the tidy daily-elimination schedule. There were a few dark seasons where they got away from that, and damn does it get messy and unfulfilling for weekly viewers.

Question 4: Is Fessy going home after he shoved Josh’s face? We saw in the tease that T.J. visits the house, and a shocking reaction shot from the house. Did Fessy really just waste his shot at the money on Josh?

TD: Those teases are always cleverly edited, but that might be enough these days to get Fessy sent home. He’ll be lucky to get off with just a stern talking to from T.J., if one could consider such a shame to be lucky.

Blaine: The teaser was set to make viewers think that Josh gets sent home from his reaction of crying in his hands; I think that’s distraction. My guess on what we’re seeing there is Josh being sad that his part-time bud gets sent home for shoving him in the face. That’s a classic Josh reaction to be devastated that someone got sent home because they shoved him. And look, the face shove isn’t worth being sent home. They should change things up some on these issues that are physical yet still minor. I suggest that they make that person who initiated physical contact be immediately sent into elimination against a house vote. A punch or something worse should get you kicked out, but a shove after some serious yelling? That’s cause for punishment, not exile. Tori’s honestly the one who deserves punishment anyway.

Adam: Fessy is going home. And it was a total waste. Get your money’s worth! (I implore you to watch that classic Challenge clip). TJ got very stern when Hughie and Corey L got into a mild shoving match a few episodes ago; there’s no way he lets any hands to the face go unpunished in this day and age. MTV must have renegotiated their insurance. I just wonder if Tori will catch some heat for helping cause this, and if Cory and Nelson will do a joint interview where they laugh at Fessy’s demise.

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