'Losing It with Jillian': Like 'Biggest Loser,' only faster and shorter

Jillian-MichaelsImage Credit: Trae Patton/NBCSince Jillian Michaels’ name is in the title of her latest reality show, I figured we would learn a little something about the fiery trainer. What were her years like as an overweight child? What drives her to push people to the brink? How does she ease the strain on her voice from yelling so much? Unfortunately, we learn none of that in Losing It with Jillian. Imagine pressing fast-forward through an entire season of Biggest Loser, and you’ve got Losing It, the new weight-loss reality show that NBC is premiering tonight (at 10 p.m. ET) to help tide you over until the next season of Biggest Loser. All the elements of the hit competitive weight-loss series are there: Jillian meets an overweight family in need of aid (in the premiere, it’s the Mastropietro clan, a “larger-than-life” Italian family), looks disgusted after seeing their dinner menu, and works them out so hard she spews lines mid-exercise like: “I will be your worst damn nightmare if I don’t see you commit to this.”

But in this show, Jillian can only be their worst nightmare for so long, since she only sticks around for five days to help change their healthy outlook on life. Perhaps that’s why I grew a bit frustrated with the premiere. Even though Biggest Loser is a heavy time commitment — two hours a week! — you get sucked in because you’re so invested in the characters. You want to see the transformations of the Mikes, Ashleys, and Sams of each season. With Losing It, we are instead mostly privy to the cast’s emotional transformations, watching them literally “lose it” as Jillian helps them overcome personal tragedy and develop better eating habits. The actual physical transformation is hardly at the forefront.

It’s touching at times, but I was hoping for a real change — some more inside access into Jillian’s own life. Instead, it feels a little like Biggest Loser Lite — all the components, but no flavor.

Regardless, are you planning on watching PopWatchers? Do you think Jillian can carry her own show?

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  • um…

    I’ll at least be checking out tonight’s premiere…it sounds like a perfectly normal summertime show…nothing really extravagant, but I’m expecting to enjoy it. And besides, if the show was a look into her personal life, wouldn’t that bring an argument against her for trying to become more “famous”…folks could say that she doesn’t really care about helping others…she only wants to get her name out there and I don’t think she really wants that.

  • Jennifer

    She’s only there for five days?

    • Ang

      My feelings. It’s a wham-bam for the camera thing. There’s not going to be any real life changing going on here. I’m sure Jillian means well, but yes, they’ll cry for the camera and she’ll get to scream and act tough and everyone will promise to turn their life around and in three months after the “follow up visist” they’ll all be eating potato chips while watching video games again.

      • Star

        Watched the show tonight. How many bottles of fake tears and rubbing your eyes does this show have to go through. Didn’t look like they lost that much to me. Good makeup artist and good clothes anyone can look great. Second of all how can anyone unemployed be able to go to afford to go the gym. When would you have time to look for a job if you were trying to lose a pound a day. Guess uneployment pays way to much.

  • shana

    If they delved into Jillian’s life, middle America might stop watching because she’s a lesbian.

    • Xena W. Princess

      sadly this is true… though i thought she was bi…

      • Stephanie

        what does her sexuality have anything to do with the quality of the show?

      • alex

        sigh…..really stephanie? did it fly over your head? in some parts of america, BIGGEST LOSER would lose viewers, which they just can’t have…you ever been outside your own state?

    • matt

      So true, So true. Middle America would rather eat their chicken nuggets than get advice from a lesbian.

      • Ariel

        Uh, Matt, Suze Orman is very much out of the closet and has millions of followers of her advice. Maybe not you but someone is buying her books and watching her TV program.

      • ld

        I think Middle America is just fine getting advice from all sorts of people but thanks for the stereotype!

    • Jen

      Actually, she has a steady relationship with a MAN

    • Kiki

      Seriously, who cares?

      • downtown diva

        I know I don’t care. What matters is that she is helping people.

    • Ang

      Yes, and middle america doesn’t watch the Ellen Show for the same reasons, it’s a big ole bomb…….oh wait….never mind.

    • queen

      what does her prefrence have to do with the show? and if its that important why are you reading about her or her shows? STOP HATING LIFE….. ILL PRAY FOR YOU!!!!

  • Xena W. Princess

    5 days is a short nightmare… is she coming back to check on them and see if they kept it up?

  • Glory

    I’m definitely going to check it out. I’m ok with Jillian swooping in for a week, helping a family and moving on to the next…sounds very Extreme Home Makeover. And summer IS a very difficult time to get invested in a show that you HAVE to watch for a couple hours a week to keep up with it.

  • Janet

    You will see the transformations at some point–she goes back to check up on them, she’s been tweeting about it.

  • Liz

    I’ll watch it! I have a huge crush on Jillian!

    • avenger

      Yeah is it wrong that she’s my girl crush, she’s kinda a badass

    • matt

      i have a crush on her too and Im gay. What is it with this women?

    • Sara

      Yep…count me in. Jillian’s hot!

    • Loraine

      I definitely have a girl-crush on Jill; but I’m sure my husband doesn’t mind :)
      She kicks my ass every morning at 5 AM with 30 Day Shred. I mean *kicks* my ass. And I have to admit, I kinda like it. Thanks for helping me lose 41 pounds and get ripped, dear Jillian!

  • Angie

    Absolutely looking forward to it; I was bummed as I thought I missed it, happy to see it’s not on till 10pm!

  • sande

    Loved the show…it is a crying shame what our emotions can do…Jillian is a true champ to even take this project on…amazing what happened to this family….Awesome!!!!!!!

  • missy

    what a great show i know so much how that fam felt… we need to focus on what she taught that family and not her personal choices.. I too am a person suffering with weight that it is killing me both emotionaly that even in my dreams i cant make myself skinny… my weight is killing me i cry everyday without my family knowing..i want to die. i too could use direction… all the best to that fortunate family to have her help…. go julian..

    • Karina

      you can do it girl!! just use this as motivation and a wake up call. you dont even have to go all out like they do if you dont want. start small by making better food choices and finding ways to get more exercise in. work at it. set goals. believe in yourself!!

  • Nell

    Frankly, I think Jullian has some pretty big emotional issues of her own. I’d bet that all that screaming and threatening is an awful lot like the early lives of many of the contestents, too. Bob manages in a very different and more loving way to relate to his people and he gets marvelous results. Still, I like watching all the “Biggest Loser” cast experience and overcome their struggles; then head for new lives. Whether I can tolerate Jullian’s hammering of people in the new show remains to be seen.

  • jimmy607296

    good

  • Chase

    I agree…. mostly. Jillian is the big draw here, they should focus more on her struggling to help the family. Her monologues and diatribes always seem sincere and compelling as opposed to the family members who seem stale and cliche. But I disagree that ‘more Jillian’ means delving into her personal life and past.

  • Lisa T

    I liked the show. I’ll definetly tune in next week, although I think they did her a disservice by letting The Biggest Loser timeslot go to another show for her first week. I think the idea is great and you could tell the people involved were helped, however the editing was lame. Too many repetitive scenes. We put up with that on BL because we have 2 hours. Tighten it up. Stick with developing the story. We’re smart enough to catch on. Go Jillian!!

  • matt

    I was completely disgusted by the way these people ate. Do most Americans eat this way? I have a hard time believing this family does eat anything green!

    Does anyone else get uncomfortable with Jillian transition from personal trainer to armchair pop therapist? As a licensed mental health professional, it makes me a bit queasy.

    • butterbuns

      It’s always bothered me when Jillian would “counsel” someone about deep-seated emotional issues. She has no professional training in grief counseling, which seems to be what the parents in this story needed. She should stick to weight loss counseling.

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