We picked up where we left off last week, with T.J. telling the gang two more people would be going home. We said goodbye to Amanda and Emanuel, and then learned the remaining players had made it to the final. We were thrust right in, and the individual final began. After the first few legs, the finalists were split into two teams. The Orange cell consists of Nany, Kaycee, Nelson, and Kyle. The Purple cell contains CT, Devin, Tori, and Emy.
Question 1: Amanda and Emanuel both got voted in, then had the right to call out their challengers. How did you like their choices?
TD: Amanda’s was dumb, for sure. Nany was the best choice, she’s the most similar in physical stature to Amanda. Emy is 4-0 in eliminations, you don’t touch her. Kaycee and Tori are too physically dominant for Amanda. As Nelson pointed out, she chose with her emotion instead of her brains. Emanuel just got an unlucky break when he chose Devin, and then their elimination was revealed to be a puzzle game. You obviously don’t go after CT, and Kyle is an elimination master. Nelson maybe, but anything physical and he gets you. Right choice, bad beat.
Blaine: Amanda chose with emotions, and Nelson said it was good as I. The most surprising thing about these two eliminations is that T.J. made a rare and surprising statement: while he always keeps the games secret, he gave a slight reveal when Amanda asked what they’d be playing. Granted, he stated the obvious when he said it wouldn’t be the same game as Emanuel had just won, but that’s very unlike T.J. to show any of his cards. And C.T. was right in confessional: Emanuel had laid too low this season, so he deserved to go in again. I’m with T.D., though — Devin was the right choice out of all that he could’ve made.
Adam: Amanda made a terrible game choice, but it was nice to see her stick by her friend and call out a game enemy. T.J. gave her one of the kindest farewells I’ve ever seen, and if you impress T.J., that’s good enough for me. But it was an awful decision. That should have been Nany down there with her. I like Nany, but she has been wallpaper this season. It would’ve been fun to see her put in the work. Emanuel was in a super tough spot. You can’t touch C.T. or Kyle, unless you’re thinking its Blaze of Glory time. Devin is the obvious choice if it’s at all physical, but I actually think Nelson was the best all around option. Gotta like your chances against him on a puzzle, and Nelly T is not as big as he looks. Emanuel has proven he’s an athlete. He could’ve made it happen.
Question 2: You’re Devin, and Tori does what she did, not only supporting your opponent, but actively helping them. How do you react?
TD: I mean, I’m pretty pissed. Did you catch Tori’s little run up to Devin and grabbing his hand as they were leaving the Lair? She’s something else. Look, as friends I will eventually forgive you. But, in the moment? Hell no, get the fuck off of me. I guess learning they were in the final softened the blow for Devin.
Blaine: I was as surprised as T.D. when Tori reached for Devin’s hand. These Challengers are more forgiving than I am, which is why I’d be terrible in the game — not to mention completely out of shape. Tori helping may have been a step too far, but I’ve always been very outspoken against anyone helping anyone else during elimination. It’s the elimination, and you should have to earn it. Tori’s repeated statement of wanting them both to win was stupid; that cannot happen.
Adam: As with all things on this show, I defer to C.T. the Elder on this. He was not having Tori trying to help. He knew the temperature of the moment and felt like it was foul play, and I agree. Tori can say she wants them both to win, but c’mon. Its too late for that. It just came off as dumb. Her blow up against Nelson also made no sense. Thank God they solved that drama with a totally natural conversation while Nelly T took his ice bath. Devin obviously got over it by the final, but you have to think Tori enters her next season with a different reputation after some shenanigans this go around.
Question 3: Any predictions for the rest of the final?
TD: They teased another elimination in the stinger, and I wonder if it’s going to pit teammates against each other. That’s how they framed it, anyway. I do think they’ll go individual again, and I think C.T. will take the men’s side. As for the women, Tori is looking good, it might be her year.
Blaine: The icing on the cake for “rookie of the century,” per Devin, would be for Emy to win the final. If it comes down to having to get a little help, can’t you see C.T. doing that for her? Plus, I’m sick of Kaycee (too boisterous of late), which also means I’m sick of Nany (too lovey-dovey and lame). Tori’s been very obnoxious this season. I’m going to pull an Amanda here and vote with my emotions, so I don’t want to pick anyone but Emy. And Nelson really looked prime to win. But I won’t vote against C.T. I can’t believe the end is almost here. Let’s go, C.T. Get that fifth title belt!
Adam: It sure did seem like they were going to have teammates eliminate each other, but The Challenge loves a good bait and switch like that. They also love callbacks to the season, and we began this one with partners. Are they doing the formats in reverse? The live tracking info as they ran up that hill showed the men and women in the same category (i.e., Tori was 2nd behind 1st place CT as they started running), and I don’t think that’s how the final awards will be doled out. Regardless of format, there’s a lot of fresh faces with a chance to win it all for the first time. It feels like this college football season, which means that from that chaos, C.T. (Alabama) will end up number one. I have grown to really like Emy, it would be great to see her win (and have two rookie winners in a row on the women’s side), but Kaycee and Tori are going to be too much.