Contestants have gone home before, but never quite like this. It's as if the producers of "The Biggest Loser" (Tue., 8 p.m. EST on NBC) are determined to have these contestants spend as much time away from their trainers as possible this season. The Red Team lost Dolvett two weeks in a row, and the Black Team has had to go without Bob. This week, everyone was going to be without any trainers, or the gym, or the Ranch ... for an unprecedented 18 days.
For some inexplicable reason, Alison Sweeney and the team decided they needed a break from the contestants, so they sent everyone home for more than two weeks. Their challenge while at home was to lose 5% of their body weight. Each person who could accomplish that would earn Immunity, no matter how their team fared at the Weigh-In.
The drawback to this is that if most of any one team gets Immunity, there could be few or no choices on who to eliminate should anyone fall short. As it turned out, three people did fall short. Ironically, it was the same three people who came in at the top of the leaderboard in the $10,000 rowing challenge. And, as it turned out, the person who won that challenge was also the person who would have to use that money as solace on their way back home, this time for good.
Apparently, Mark and Chism struggled at home, as neither of them hit their goal weight loss. Mark missed his by a pound, while Chism missed his by four. Even harder for him, though, was because of how the rest of his team had done, he only needed to lose twelve pounds for the Black Team to win the weigh-in, and then him missing his personal mark wouldn't have mattered. He missed that by one pound.
And he was the only member of the Black Team to miss the 5% threshold. So there was no deliberation, and Chism was eliminated right there on the scale. It was a particularly harsh moment for his dad Mark, who was standing there at 215 pounds and basically done with his own weight-loss journey. Chism was still pushing 300 pounds. Not to mention that they'd both just proven they still couldn't really do what needed to be done at home.
But Mark's pleas to go home instead of his son wouldn't go answered, and Chism took his defeat like a man, talking his father down and saying that he did this to himself. For the integrity of the game, all he could do was walk out with his head held high and continue his journey at home. A journey fans can apparently now follow with video updates at the show's website. This was the teaser in place of a follow-up look at how Chism is doing now.
Is this how it's going to be for every eliminated contestant from this point on -- as a way to encourage people to jump on their website -- or is it a special case for Chism? Next week will have that answer, as well as a likely return to all the frustrating drama and in-fighting that has plagued this season now that everyone is back together. The trainer switch should certainly ratchet up the tension.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this post said that contestants had to lose 10% of their body weight to gain immunity. The correct number was 5%.
Find out what happens next on "The Biggest Loser," Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST on NBC.
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