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'The Biggest Loser: Couples' Season 11, Episode 20 Recap

by Jason Hughes, posted May 18th 2011 5:40AM
Final Four, 'The Biggest Loser: Couples 4'['The Biggest Loser: Couples' - 'Week Twenty']

"I want to say I can't believe it. But that's not true, because I CAN!" -- Hannah

Four entered this final week on The Biggest Loser campus and ... well, four people walked out. Couldn't we have had a two-hour makeover episode and shortened this penultimate installment to a single hour?

There may have been two challenges, a weigh-in and trips home for all four contestants, but it still felt like there was just so much padding. I felt like I could probably go ahead and do laundry or cook dinner while the episode was running and still not really miss anything.

Oh, except maybe then I wouldn't find out that Olivia was proud of Hannah and Hannah was proud of Olivia, Jay has nine lives, Irene is currently the biggest loser and Bob loves everyone. No, wait! We already knew all of that!

The first of this week's challenges was a fun cooking challenge where they had to make turkey burgers for a herd of children. While I applaud Olivia's creativity in coming up with a slime concoction, that it was yogurt on a burger was going to be a hard sell for the kids. Jay's volcano burger concept was clearly the most ingenious for the audience, and he won. His prize was $5,000 from Jennie-O and a 2-week stay at The Biggest Loser Resort for a loved one; he chose his wife.

Hannah, though, came into her own on the second challenge, which was an endurance variation of their favorite "putting the weight back on" challenges. This time they had weighted flags they had to carry across 18 holes of a golf course. It made for an awkward double drop at the 18th hole for both weeks 18 and 19, but I guess I'll let it slide.

However, all the dramatic music in the world couldn't make it more interesting visually. Even last season's winner Patrick didn't add much enthusiasm or wisdom. Maybe they're better off on that dirt track they usually use for this challenge where they can throw their bag over the cliff at the end. For some reason, this challenge just fell flat for me. I didn't feel as much the burden of that extra weight seeing it as flags.

I'll give props to Hannah for surging ahead early, though at one point it looked like Irene had a flag in one of the earlier holes before hers. Nevertheless, Hannah pulled it out and took the victory, which netted her a home gym worth $15,000 to use toward the finale. That should help.

Jay, as always, was proud just to finish the challenge, even if it was dead last. His reward every day is that he's still in this game. The weigh-in actually came out the way the producers have clearly been wanting all season.

Every week we've been hearing about how the Purple Team are underdogs and how Hannah and Olivia walked onto the Ranch holding hands and they wanted to walk out the same way on their way to the live finale. So, they weighed-in last.

All four did well on the scale for this point in the competition. And, if it were to end today, Irene would still be the winner. But she was beaten by the Purple Team, as Olivia and Hannah indeed secured their spots with a one-two finish. Hannah, in fact, won the weigh-in as she had that last challenge. So there was a lot of hugging and crying and patting on the back.

The pair became the first-ever sisters to compete in the finale and, while America loves to root for the underdogs, they've been poised for this positioning for weeks. I can't help it, but I'm happy for them. I think it's an exciting thing for them and an astonishing accomplishment they can be proud of.

That left Jay and Irene to plea for America's votes, and I can't remember the last time two people fought so little for America's support. It was as if they didn't really care, or just refused to beg. It's a difference of $150,000 and facing off against two people or tons of people.

Who do you think will get the vote? I think if one of the sisters had gone below, America would have voted to keep them together, but I'm less sure about Irene vs. Jay. Jay seems to be more likable, as Irene was so closed emotionally throughout this season. But perhaps people will reward her hard work and the fact she's technically the biggest loser at this point.

It would suck for her to be leading the pack for all these weeks and then fall short at the last second, but Jay's story is no less amazing. He was eliminated once and brought back into the game by Rulon and Hannah, then saved a second time when Tim Gunn erased the yellow line during Makeover Week. The comeback kid could come back again.

Who are you most excited about seeing from the eliminated contestants? And does anyone want to go out on a limb and make predictions about who might win the at-home prize?

'The Biggest Loser' airs Tuesdays, 8PM ET on NBC.

[Follow Jason on Twitter.]

Watch the full episode here:

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Jan Silvers

Can someone tell me why Rulan was not at the last show?

May 26 2011 at 8:12 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Where was Rulon?

May 24 2011 at 10:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Despite my unconditional love for the show, this season TBL hit ground bottom in boringness. None of the last people in the house where very appealing and some are plain dull and annoying like Hannah and Olivia. I think that NBC kinda got screwed because from day one everyone knew it would go between Courtney, Justin, Moses and Rulon, as long as one of those 4 where around the ratings would be able to compensate their investment on this season. However, the first two had 2 strokes of bad luck and got sent off, the other two simply got tired of the house and wanted out. Bottom line the top dogs went out, the underdogs took over, but what's interesting in watching the underdogs fare against each other? So as they decided to start cutting off episode time, emblematic challenges and even the Marathon I can only assume the network also decided to give up on this and just go for preparing season 12, hopefully with a better cast and someone more skilled than Cara to replace Jillian.

May 20 2011 at 4:20 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I'm sorry, but Hannah and Olivia are so annoying. Their accomplishment is obviously great. But having them be the producer's focal point for the second half of the season was too much for me. Way too much underdog talk, "everyone's been saying that the purple team can't make it," I love hannah and am proud of her, I love olivia and am proud of her, blah blah blah, non stop talking every week. I liked them early on but they just got obnoxious over the last couple weeks.

May 18 2011 at 9:19 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I thought it was a great season. Overall the contestants seemed to care about each other and didn't get into all the game playing and back stabbing that sometimes happens. The players seemed to vote more on who needed to be there instead of who their biggest competition was. I wish all of them good luck. I feel that Irene would probably win if she is the 3rd contestant because she still has some weight left to lose, while Hannah and Olivia are getting pretty small. But if Jay makes it into final three then he will win provided he continues to lose, because he has the most left to lose.

May 18 2011 at 12:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Deanna's comment

With all due respect Deanna, but how can you say that they where voting on who needed to be there, when Moses got sent off at a higher BMI than Olivia at her starting weight and Ken went home still an obese because Hannah didn't think she could finish it at home, even though she was at a healthy weight for a long time. The truth is this season is nothing different than the other game play seasons, we got our typical alliance 3 way alliance (the Purple sisters and Irene), very similar to last seasons Don Frado's Mafia, only in a sensitive underdog fashion. The only difference is men don't tend to turn on the waters so much or look innocent after voting off their competition, but if you wanna compare with other game playing women, season 6 Heba and Vicky's way of ill-wishing against the competition was just as infuriating as the way the Purple-Orange alliance backed Rulon into a corner making him look like he was the evil game player when he never did a single game playing decision on campus. As you see, game play was always there, only this time it had a more likable and emotional mask of the underdogs to hide behind.

May 21 2011 at 12:57 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I agree this episode wasn't all that exciting, but it was really inspiring. Seeing what these ladies have overcome this season has really gave me motivation to start working on some goals of my own. I'm actually surprised the sisters made the top 2 because it seems like both of them don't have much left to lose. Personally I think I'm rooting for Irene because she has come so far without a lot of support. It's nice that 3 of the final 4 are women though.

May 18 2011 at 9:42 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I abhor those sisters. This is possibly the worst season evah.

May 18 2011 at 8:45 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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