'The Biggest Loser: Couples' Premiere: Nine 'eliminations'?!

Biggestloserjerry_lWhat better time for the start of another season of NBC’s weight-loss behemoth, The Biggest Loser, than the beginning of a new year — a time when many of us are begrudgingly nibbling on chicken breasts and steamed broccoli when we’d rather be downing Cool Ranch Doritos and Phish Food ice cream? And what better motivation than watching a group of 22 contestants drop the equivalent of a pre-schooler every week? So let’s raise our bottles of filtered Brita water and 100-calorie packs to toast a new year and a new season of tough love from Bob and Jillian!

As my colleague Annie Barrett mentioned earlier this week, the series’ seventh season is indeed its biggest ever. The heaviest contestant weighs 454 lbs., and he’s only 19! And the trainers have some heavy lifting ahead of them, too, which became especially evident as Bob and Jillian secretly watched the couples via hidden camera during their first workouts — sans trainers.

After the couples were split into two teams, they found their way to a dimly lit bridge — why do all the challenges on this show seem to happen under the cover of darkness? — for their first challenge. I give this one a 2.3 out of 10 on the creativity scale. Running across a bridge and climbing over a pile of sand? That’s the best the show’s producers could come up with? How about forcing the teams to do it three-legged-race style or with one of them wearing a blindfold? Anyway… Though the sister duo of the yellow team gave it a valiant effort, it was the dude cousins of the black team who won — and got immunity. Here’s how the rest of the episode played out:

Heaviest moment: Undoubtedly, 63-year-old Jerry collapsing after his first workout — before Jillian even sank her maniacal claws into him. Thankfully he’s okay, and lost an impressive 25 lbs.

What the #$*@ moment: I think I’m going to like the feisty girls of the "silver bullet" team, but why did Carla think her workout needed the flourish of a parallel-bars routine? Honey, the Olympics were last year. Leave that crazy Nastia Liukin business at home.

addCredit(“Mitchell Haaseth/NBC”)

Biggest twist(s): The entire elimination played out like a soap opera, maybe even like an episode of Days of Our Lives,Ms. Alison Sweeney! First the perky host announced that there would beno elimination. After the whoops and cheers subsided, she got to thecatch: No one would be eliminated, but nine people would be sent home(each team except for the Biggest Loser team and the team with immunitywould have to nix one player). I was really starting to question whythis season is called Biggest Loser: Couples, when there’d beno, you know, COUPLES. But then the final Ding Dong dropped: The playerswho were sent home could return to the ranch in 30 days if theirpartners were still in the game. By this point, Allison could have toldme I had a long-lost twin named Rupert and I probably would havebelieved her.

Biggest Losers: In the end, the father/son brown team werethe Biggest Losers having dropped a combined 54 lbs. Dad Ron lost 32 ofthem himself (the largest amount ever for one week).

Honorable mentions: The yellow team’s Aubrey for sprintingthe last 50 yards of the elimination challenge and almost overcoming the black team’s lead. Also, 19-year-old Dan for dropping 30 lbs.Perhaps it’s his youth, but every time he opens his mouth — in particular, when he shared his dream of growing old andsitting on the porch with his bud David — I get alittle teary eyed.

Tell me I’m not alone in that department, PopWatchers. I’m also curious: Who are your favorites sofar? What were your favorite moments from last night’s premiere? Andhow many product placements did you catch? (I saw three.)

More Biggest Loser:
‘Biggest Loser 7′ preview: Gonna need a little more effort from the Orange Team
‘Biggest Loser’ season 6 winner: The 110-pound finale

Comments (139 total) Add your comment
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  • ggirl03

    Were both Season 6 and Season 7 participants on the ranch at the same time? Judging by the state of the host’s pregnancy it appears that the answer is yes. She is due this month. Does anyone know?

  • jones

    I wondered about the timing too b/c Allison did not look pregnant (or at least not very far along) in last night’s episode, similiar to episodes last season. She was very pregnant at the live season finale in December.

  • Moxie

    By far my fave is Tara, the green team member that stayed. Loved her “C’mon, Cupcake. You’re not the only fat chick here!” comment about her partner, Laura, when Laura was complaining about working out. And then Tara threw up on the treadmill!!….and kept going!! Now THAT’S a girl Jillian is going to loooove training. She seems the most determined to me. Oh, and her “lose 21 lbs. in one week? Who does that?!? I do!”. Yup…she’s m’girl this season!

  • Jilli

    They usually start filming them a month or two apart I believe. I think they had mentioned it once in season 5

  • Lisa F.

    The timing issue was bugging me also. If they were on the ranch at the same time, how did Bob and Jillian manage to train two groups at once? The nine person “elimination” really pissed me off, why get us invested in the groups, only to send half of them home? All these people NEED help from the trainers, what a let down.

  • roe

    Did NOT like the ‘twist’ at all. As for the timing issue, remember that contestants go home for several months before the finale, plenty of time for a new ‘crop’ to be brought in and filmed.

  • My Thoughts

    I felt really bad for the 9 people sent home. How can you choose who needs to be there more? They are all so huge! I loved the faces Jillian & Bob were making at the weigh-in. So much for them to work with (so many broken people for Jillian to fix!). Tara may be my favorite. I’m glad Laura went home because she was definitely going to hold their team back.

  • Shelly

    I turned it before they could spilt up and decide who would go home. I knew it would be too emotional for bedtime. LOL I thought they should have at least given them 2 weeks to get used to the lifestyle change and learning how to exercise to attempt to be successful at home. SOme of those people took leaves from their jobs. I think that this will be a good season because the high weights make the playing field more level.

  • Gretchen Weiners

    This is the first time I’ve really watching this show aside from it just being on in the background. It was really good, but too long. I’m rooting for Jerry and Estella. Something about an older couple who have been married forever going through something like this together really gets me!

  • joeyg

    Also did not like the 9 sent home twist – thought it was dumb. Imagine thinking your in this together and then you’re not. Not a fun premise, I thought. Thanks for the insight about the pregnancy – I just assumed she had already had the baby – but that was only 3 weeks ago, the finally.
    Go Daniel – and everyone – good luck. I have never weighed more than 150 lbs, but I love this show and the good vibes it gives me. Well, except for last season – I missed the last 4 weeks because of those ugly-spirited people!! I only watched the finally to see them lose and vowed not to watch BL again if anyone but Michelle won! Now I get to continue watching even with the dumb twist last night.

  • Robert

    I have watched every episode of BL from day 1. Yes last season was the absolute worst because of nastiness of the final 5 except for Michelle. If Heba hadn’t won $100,000 it would have ended perfectly in the realm of what goes around comes around. In regards to this season I was furious with the 9 going home. Those 9 were there for 7 days and get sent home. Big whop. Those 7 days are not enough to get them on the right track back home. I have been on a medically supervised weight loss program since early November .. 9 weeks ago and I am still having a really hard time. If I had to go it alone after 7 days… forget it.
    Bob & Jillian have truly changed people’s lives so when they get to the pearly gates I suspect they’ll just walk right thru. Good for them!
    Last I hope the 2 models come out on top. I think most people who are fit and trim in youth and gain 100lbs over the years draw inspiration in knowing the weight can come off. I LOVE Bob’s words.. DRIVE PAST THE DRIVE THRU PEOPLE!

  • Missie

    At the last season finale, Allison said she was 3 or 4 weeks from her due date. I think the finale was on 12/16. I guess she’s due any day.

  • Sabrina

    I agree – didn’t care for the twist. If they were going to do that, they should have waited two or three weeks so that the contestants had an idea of what they were doing. Week three is usually one of the hardest in any weight loss program – that’s going to be tough for them at home.

  • Mary

    I missed the elimination the cable went out who went home?

  • jo

    I think the twist of sending 9 home came from how ugly last season got. Remember, this was taped while last season’s contestants were home losing their final weight. Certainly the producers knew the audience’s reaction to the drama taking place. Too many viewers were taken aback by Vicky’s ugliness and I believe this was an attempt to break up that kind of negative team building.
    Oh, the events taking place at night? I thought that was because of Allison’s day job.
    I Love Love Love this show! It is so inspirational! Go Jillian! Go Bob!

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