They’ve been in the Whitsunday’s for a few days now, but there’s no time to relax. In one of the last episodes of this show to air on Nine, I’m not quite sure how much of this episode will deal with the second endurance challenge, or what else is in store, but I guess it gives me plenty more reason to find out!
Kate Ceberano is at Whitehaven Beach, where the contestants are about to arrive to create a raft to the specifications outlined and to the specific look of a pre-built raft. To build their rafts, contestants must first drag the items needed to build the raft from one point to another down the beach. They may only take one item at a time.
When their raft has been assembled, they must get on the raft and sail out to a boat where Dr. Joanna is waiting for them. Really now, shouldn’t that be Kate’s job?
It’s not quite that easy, though. They will all have to undertake this challenge while padlocked together.
The contestants head to the beach and of course a cutaway of Darryn telling us about the challenge and how crap his partner is HAS to accompany their walk in.
Christian is waiting there and welcomes them. He tells them what they have to do in the challenge- basically what Kate told us. Now I don’t know if this is just me, but Kate explaining the challenge AS SOON as the episode began seemed all a bit too sudden for me. Would it NOT kill her to take Christian’s place and explain the rules then? That way we don’t have to hear them twice, Kate has a bigger role, and we enter the episode a little more smoothly. One thing Top Design did wrong was get into the episode too quickly. Excess Baggage does the exact same thing.
Christian asks them who has built a raft and Brant says he had in Scouts. Darryn has also built a raft however he and his team failed. Lisa is panicking at this admission. They are all padlocked to their partners and Christian outlines the reasons for doing this (teamwork, trust, etc.).
The contestants played in a touch footy game off camera (they don’t really bother showing this) and during this Ajay managed to really damage her ankle. To her dismay, she has been medically ruled out of this challenge. Matt will have to pull her weight as well as his own.
Christian tells us that because the contestants must only drag one item at a time, if they find it is the wrong item, they must bring it back! Groan!
Christian tells them that even the losers will get a point. The winner will get eight points. If they don’t make it to the boat for whatever reason, they will score no points.
Opinion point: What do you think of the challenge?
It’s challenge time! After the break, we are told that Ajay will still compete, but will not be padlocked to Matt. Christine and Nathan are getting some pace, but as Christine explains the rules again, it seems they will face some difficulty.
Uplifting music plays as Kevin and Renae also make some good progress. Kate and Sarah are running very well together, getting them some pace.
John and Brant grab some frame. They are setting the raft up as they go. Darryn and Lisa have no idea what to do, Darryn is already getting annoyed. After getting some pieces, they begin to cluelessly put it together. Ajay mentions that Darryn probably pays to get his IKEA furniture set up.
Matt, who is running alone, has to do twice the work thanks to Ajay’s foot. He does quite well.
The contestants are now knotting their raft together and John and Brant seem to really excel at this- as they should!
Nathan and Christine feel they are done so they call Christian over to check their raft. Christine wants to tie it up tighter, so she dismisses Christian for now.
Christian goes to inspect the grey teams raft before going back to the yellow team. He allows both teams to move onto stage three.
Brant is concerned about the yellow team’s progress- feeling they are a threat. The contestants who enter the water no longer have to be padlocked.
Opinion point: Are Brant & John the couple to beat in this show?
After the break, we follow Darryn and Lisa’s progress. Due to Lisa’s panicking, the team aren’t doing so well and Darryn is again raising his voice. This creates the perfect opportunity for us to revisit their previous arguments. Darryn is fearful that the crippled purple team will catch up to them.
Only two teams are in the water still, and they are gaining some speed.
Dipper wants Christian over and he inspects their boat. They are good to go and now they want to aim for the top! Dipper comically describes how the transition process between finishing their boat, getting unhooked, getting into swimsuits and all of that stuff is the hardest part of the challenge.
Ben and Gabby also want to be checked and they are ready- which is good because Gabby is puffing hard!
The race is still between yellow and grey. Christine and Nathan aren’t really going in the right direction with Christine seemingly paddling in the wrong direction.
The grey team make the boat first and John can hardly get on the boat due to his breathlessness. Still, they make it first and earn 8 points.
Nathan and Christine finish second with 7 points.
Dipper and Lana get in the water. They struggle to get on their raft, especially Lana. It causes the green team to nearly overtake. Ben is happy that he is racing Dipper at 54 and not at 24!
Kate and Sarah are working on their raft, as are a whole swathe of teams. Darryn and Lisa are still fighting.
From the long shot we are given, it seems the orange team will not be beaten. Just like in the spirit challenge, the green team are ready to beat them. That is before Gabby falls in the water.
BUT, after the break, Gabby manages to get back on the raft and onto the boat with Ben, claiming a very close third place- a repeat of the spirit challenge.
Dipper and Lana get fourth place with 5 points. Gabby & Ben will earn 6.
Ajay and Matt are the next team into the water. Matt picks up the entire raft by himself in a mighty show of strength.
Kate & Sarah are next into the water. They almost won the last endurance challenge! The purple team now has competition. They aren’t moving, allowing Kate & Sarah to catch up!
The blue team and red team are last into the water, allowing all four teams leeway to catch up.
Kate & Ajay make it to the boat in fifth place, earning 4 points. Kate & Sarah make it in sixth place, earning 3 points.
Matt, physically and mentally drained, breaks down to Ajay’s comfort. ‘Never underestimate the spirit of the underdog!’
The red team are really struggling. At this point, Darryn just wants to make it to the boat. Kevin and Renae make it seventh, earning 2 points. This will leave Lisa and Darryn in last place, earning a point.
Darryn thinks they could have done better! Darryn is upset…again.
Joanna offers them a round of applause and congratulates them all. With that, they head back to their accommodation island, leaving Christian to fend for himself!
Opinion point: Would Kate Ceberano taking over Joanna’s role in that challenge made more sense?
After the break, Joanna sends them into their next nutrition session. There is a big table of food which they all had to collectively split into two groups- healthy foods and unhealthy foods.
Pretty easy really.
They all argue over a glass of orange juice. They all deduce that for everything they get wrong, they have to do ten push ups.
Now for the cringe scene of the year so far- Joanna comes in to tell them that none of them are wrong- there’s no such thing as good and bad food! Oh, god, really, Joanna! Waste. Of. Time.
I guess she has a point though, but did she have to SMILE so much!!
Joanna proves that none of it is bad food by taking a bite out of some chocolate cake. The contestants are surprised she did this, and even more surprised when she didn’t blow up!
They all share the chocolate cake as Joanna tells them that if they eat some chocolate cake, it’s just a slice of chocolate cake. If they then go out and go on a binge, that’s a different story.
Joanna tells them all to relax over food choices and just worry about moderation. She then dishes out some other trivial nutritional information.
They all thank Joanna, ending the session.
Opinion point: How important is it for the show to air nutritional sessions like this?
After the break, the contestants gather around Christian and Joanna for the reveal of the scores. The scores from both Whitsunday challenges have been added up. They read like this:
CHRISTINE & NATHAN: 10
BRANT & JOHN: 8
GABBY & BEN: 8
KEVIN & RENAE: 7
DIPPER & LANA: 6
AJAY & MATT: 4
KATE & SARAH: 3
DARRYN & LISA: 1
Pretty good effort for Christine & Nathan. Darryn isn’t too happy about his position. Lisa thinks it is better than 0 but Darryn thinks they should work out how to do better.
Now, enough talking, more eating! They all head to a beachside dinner where different assortments of wine, beer, non-alcoholic beverages and food await them. Joanna dishes out some more information, like how having a bit of alcohol is actually good.
John fires up a barbecue which does look a little fatty. Ben doesn’t want to take any beers as he feels it will make him give into temptation.
Christian and Kevin talk about Kevin’s relationship with Britney in relation to his dancing. He still has a soft spot for her as she is the mother of his children.
Joanna ends the episode by reminding them of their check in tomorrow. This doesn’t stop Brant, John and some others from lashing out with some alcohol. John really wants to get Brant to get rid of his drinking problem!
So the episode was quite good content wise. Production was a little dodgy at times. Using microphones on the rafts meant sound was a bit distorted. I also felt some flashbacks were overused (like the one of the spirit challenge). Kate again is being underused and her position’s credibility is now becoming very much disputable. And again, this episode ‘opened too quickly’ in that we had little introduction before the task actually began! I have to say, probably the worst episode of the season- probably not a good sign on the day it was shunted to GO!
Production Values (visual and audio techniques, overall ‘bling’ of the show): 3.8/5
‘Sell-out’ factor (Cross-promotion and product placement free?): 2/2
Entertainment Value (emotional feel, storyline, eventful?): 2/3
Courtney’s Verdict: 7.8/10