Excess BaggageMon-Thu 7pm, Ch9.

Nice hat, "Daz"

Still in the Whitsundays, tonight’s endurance challenge has the teams building a raft while padlocked together and then paddling it out to a launch in the middle of the bay. Brant admits to having built a raft a long time ago when he was in Scouts, and Darryn regales the mob with his lack of success as a prefect in school in raft building. Ajay isn’t allowed to run on the beach with an imaginary touch football related injury, so Matt has to do all the heavy lifting himself.

Christian padlocks the teams to each other, and he offers this final piece of advice: “Don’t f#ck it up.” Gabby and Ben spend far too long studying the raft while the other teams get to the business of collecting their raft bits and getting them to their construction bay. Ajay notes that Darryn probably has to pay to put his Ikea furniture together from his efforts at raft building. Says the lady sitting on her butt watching it all happen around her due to her “injury”. One by one the teams get their rafts built, approved and in the water. Most of them… except for the Red team – Darryn & Lisa.

Kate notes that the Red team have struggled to work well together – a great excuse to show a montage of Darryn running blindfolded into trees and obsctacles from last week’s Kimberley challenge. It’s a battle at the front between the Yellow and Grey teams but due to Nathan and Christine’s language issues they let the Grey team (Brant and John) slide in front of them and take the win. As each position is worth points all the teams are still furiously competing for positions to get more points. Gabby pops in to narrate after visting Cleavage Town, and while she said lots of things no one can remember what they were. The Orange and Green teams battle it out for third/fourth, with the Red, Pink, Blue and Purple teams still on the beach. Green (Gabby and Ben) sneaks in a third place, Orange (Dipper and Lana) fourth, and it’s an entire week back to the Purple team (Ajay and Matt) in fifth. Ajay revels in the spirit of the underdog (a new breed of bull mastiff?) while the Pink team (Kate and Sarah) came home sixth, the Blue team (K-Fed and Renae) seventh, and the Red team (Darryn and Lisa) an ego-deflating last.

Somewhere in the midst of this I missed that this is the “spirit challenge”. I have subsequently decided that my spirit animal is the dodo. Dr Joanna runs a nutrition session with the teams, giving them plates of food and asking them to place the plates on tables marked “good” and “bad”. Dipper announces in the middle of the session as he picks up the pasta that he is Italian and loves his pasta, and you could knock the others over with a feather. I hope that wasn’t the revelation they were sizzling before the ad break. Ajay is again directing traffic using her recently discovered spirit animal, the seagull (flies in, makes a lot of noise, shits over everything, flies away). Dipper makes peace with everyone by saying that they’ll all do 10 push-ups for each item they’ve allocated incorrectly. The ensuing angry mob calls in Dr Joanna who announces they’ve got none of them wrong because “there’s no good and bad food – only food.” K-Fed smiles and scarfs down a good pizza, followed by a good carton of Dr Pepper.

Dr Joanna wants them to all understand that food is all about relaxing and ejoying the portions you choose, and your attitude to food. Ben talks about the little man in his head that tells him to kill and kill again and they quickly cut over to Darryn who talks about inhaling food and his dream to be a blimp, flying over the MCG. Dr Joanna reminds the contestants they are all in control of what they put in their mouths and that “food is just food.” Revolutionary. After the break we’ll learn that “beer is just beer” and “breathing is just breathing”. I like this new way of thinking and would like to subscribe to their newsletter and/or e-mail list.

Christian and Dr Joanna present the team standings after the two challenges in the Whitsundays. There’s a lot of tension from a lot of overweight people, meaning there’s a lot of medics just off camera. Christine and Nathan (Yellow) are on top with 10 points; Darryn and Lisa (Red) are at the bottom with 1 mighty point. Having the score read to him immediately gets right under Darryn’s skin, so much so his hair turns blue, pink and red with rage. Dr Joanna affirms it’s all about attitude, then invites them all to dinner – why can I never find a nutritionist this relaxed?!

John notes that all these temptations are placed in front of them because they’re being prepared for real life. They have to choose to not take too much of anything, and he and Ben know their limits. John immediately starts cooking 12 steaks. Christian asks K-Fed to list the incredible artists he’s worked with, but he only mentions Britney as his ex-wife and that post their relationship was when he started putting on weight. “I can’t remember what went on, it was that crazy,” says K-Fed of what happened on the beach 20 minutes ago.

Dr Joanna offers them a reminder that tomorrow it’s all about the check-in, so “take it easy and get some sleep”. Brant, K-Fed and Ajay settle in for a smoke and wine, and John’s concerned that you can lead a horse to water and it will always take a drink. Or something. He doesn’t care, he’s off to bed.

The Biggest Loser AustraliaMon-Thu 7pm, Ch10.

Who here likes public speaking?!

Camp Biggest Loser is bugged, and the trainers are all given a front row seat at the success they’ve instilled in each of their team. If you define success as second and third dinners.

Before the main event we’ve gotta evict someone. James scarpering with $30,000 wasn’t enough, we demand tears from EVERYone. Lydia votes with her head, not her extremely constricted heart and votes for Shane. Brian votes for Michelle because he couldn’t consider voting for Shane. Lisa also votes with her head – a cunning strategy by the Red Team – and votes for Shane. Luke votes with his heart, and writes Michelle’s name in blood. Brenda also votes for Shane using her head, as does Hamish. No one cares what Margie thinks. Shane has a moment to preach to the choir before teary farewells and the screen door hitting him on his ample arse on the way out of Camp Biggest Loser. 4 weeks on Shane has continued to lose weight on the outside, with his fitness and diet improving out of sight.

As the Blue and Red teams return to the common area, we re-live the EXACT THING WE JUST SAW BEFORE THE BREAK. Graham from the Black team says what everyone isn’t thinking: “You better watch your back because we’re gonna put in 110% into everyfink.”

Before the trainers can make it to sessions with their teams, they’re taken to the weigh-in room to learn the contestants this year are always being watched. Cue faux surprise and scripted joy. Shannan gets a reality check on just how much the Blue team aren’t exercising and are eating. Michelle gets the same with the Red team – particularly with Margie’s secret sandwich session. Then, in the most convoluted set piece seeing the trainers and Hayley walk down too many corridors, they’re taken to a room full of screens – The Bunker. Where the trainers can watch the contestants all the time, and they all agree the only rule should be that the contestants don’t find out about the Bunker – ever. Michelle immediately goes to the coolroom to remove food that’s not on her approved list, but realises that she needs to trust her team – particularly Margie. Yeah – right.

Michelle and Shannan have a surprise for the teams: time to get dressed in their Sunday best, because everyone’s going to town. Chatswood isn’t quite “town”, but it’s gotta be better than Camp. The contestants are all challenged to present a short speech about their struggles to a packed auditorium. With one hour to prepare it’s little comfort that Hayley believes in them. Tears already for Kasey and that’s just because Trainer Tiffiny walked into the room and offers to rip the weight off her. It’s all about their own self-belief.

Shannan tells Hamish he wants to see how a 20 year old feels. Perhaps he should go to the Ivy a little more often. “Hamish is the perfect example of bullying,” says Shannan as he bullies Hamish into finalising his speech. Then, one by one, each contestant is given their chance to speak with their trainer waiting in the wings to encourage them. Everyone applauds Ryan when he announces that he is the fattest contestant in the history of the Biggest Loser worldwide, proving even the audience don’t get the point of this challenge. A lot of pain is coming out but the pseudo-psychiatry of the trainers will see the contestants through.

Each of the contestants did a great job in sharing in their own special way what has held them back and what spurs them on. Michelle started with tears but held it together to say she wants to be married, have kids, the white picket fence, the dog – everything. Then she sings Amazing Grace and the entire audience stand and applaud, mistaking the challenge for an Australian Idol audition. Good grief.

Tomorrow night sees the first ever 12-hour lockdown temptation with the trainers watching on from the Bunker-at-the-end-of-all-the-tunnels. It’s guaranteed Bunkeriffic fun!

My Kitchen RulesMon-Thu 7:30pm, Ch7

Umm, Carla... your fridge doesn't working in the open position

It’s down to the Mornington Penninsula for Team Vic’s Thomas and Carla, working in a platonic relationship – VERY PLATONIC, reminds Carla, pashing him on the lips – for them to deliver their instant restaurant “Grazed”. By the end of the night I do not think it means what you think it means right now.

Pete thinks their entree of Wheat Beer and Mussel soup is ‘quite interesting’, which is always code for ‘completely disgusting but my mother always taught me to be polite’. For mains, Team Vic are plating Lamb Kofte and dessert is Minature Lavender & Blueberry Cheesecakes. Both Pete and Manu have high expectations for this menu as “cooked properly all these dishes are wonderful”. Cooked properly. The case of the missing shopping bag has cost them at least 20 minutes, though luckily it was just Thomas self-sabotaging and not Thomas “accidentally” leaving the missing bags at Coles. This eats into their preparation time as the instant restaurant isn’t complete and the magical three-hour prep clock starts while they’re bag hunting.

Team Vic starts prep with 2:36 on the clock, proving immediately that Thomas has no idea when it comes to numbers, so that may not bode well for him following a recipe. De-bearding the mussels doesn’t allow time for de-bearding Thomas, but then they don’t want surprises in their entree. Five minutes to go and they’re preparing their Pimms for their guests. There’s a lot of cucumber in those cocktails. Thomas is glad everyone is impressed because he would be. Team SA’s Leigh notes they talk the talk, but can they walk the walk. Like all other bipeds, Thomas and Carla walk out of the room proving Leigh correct.

Thomas’s doorbell fear springs forth as Pete and Manu arrive, and Carla tells us she loves a challenge. Like serving drinks without spilling them. Thomas drops the mussels in the soup base to steam them open, and in no time they’re serving their entree. Pete tells us Manu loved the mussels, and then says he himself wants some more. The small waif slave boy standing at the end of the table gives him a dirty look for stealing his line and turns on his heel and storms out. Team NSW’s Helen loves the flavours; Leigh got a beard in her dish prompting questions about who does and doesn’t wax “down there” from Princess Jen after she misunderstands her teammate.

Thomas and Carla work hard to deliver the Lamb Kofta main, ideally delivering it inside one hour. Princess Jen is expecting “really good food for Tommy and Carla. Yeah.” Meanwhile Thomas is battling making the cheesecakes when Pete arrives asking how the Koftas are going – they’re not. Carla adding olives to her Tabouleh is her secret weapon – “No one is going to expect olives.” In bursts a Cardinal shouting “NO-body expects the Spanish Inquisition!” It’s awkward for a moment and then he leaves. Team UnZud’s Helen says something about waiting for an hour and a half for mains (my guess, anyway) but secretly notes this is a good thing for them considering they’re on the bottom of the scoreboard before tonight’s scoring. Could their devious plan of simply waiting for Thomas and Carla to screw up work for them?!

Thomas has no time to taste the Koftas because it’s been almost two hours since entree and there’s a near mutiny within the guests. Leigh’s so hungry she’s ready to go and ask if they need her advice or for her to call for some help or something. We’re save from Leigh’s insurrection by a promo for the new bad guys in Group 2 – the new Team Qld of Peter and Gary. Cue montage of bitching and criticism. Goddamn those boys are gonna be fun.

The claws are out in the kitchen too, with Thomas and Carla delivering mains two and a half hours after serving entree and it looks outstandingly underwhelming. “Did you try the meat?” Carla asks Thomas. “Who do you think I am? I’ve been slaving in the kitchen ALL DAY for you and this is how you treat me?!” screams Thomas. Pete and Manu tear the main a new Kofta – each element has something wrong or underwhelming with it. Team NSW’s Steve says “It’s not a real Kofta. It’s just mince with a lot of common in it.” As they prepare dessert Thomas and Carla decide now to start tasting what they’re preparing. The lavender topping is on and the cheesecakes are in the freezer, needing at least an hour to set. “More time, more time! Move down, move down!” screams Thomas. Back in the freezer goes dessert and more waiting for their guests.

90 minutes after serving mains two and a half hours late, dessert is served. They gently shake each guest awake as they present them with their long overdue, partially frozen mini cheesecake dessert. Why does no one trust the Vienetta as the staple for ALL good dinner party desserts any more?! By way of morse code Manu delivers his critique of the cheesecake: “I’m not here to hurt your feelings. I’m really sorry guys, but this is the worst dish I’ve ever had.” He notes the cheesecake tastes like lamb, and the lavender is holding the entire dish to ransom for $1 million. Leigh and Princess Jen take great delight in recounting with great innaccuracy what Manu allegedly said. Pete thought no higher of the dish. “It’s inedible. The problem is the flavour – it actually tastes like you’re eating soap, and that’s no good for a dessert unless you’re living in Guantanamo Bay, where soap is the only flavour they often.”

Team UnZud delight in Team Vic’s dessert-inspired cataclysm, and Angela notes that tasting the lavender reminds her of her granny’s panty drawer. Methinks she’s overshared. Teammate Justine cackles at Angela’s auditory stroke. The teams went at Team Vic with a vengeance. The moral of the story is don’t delay your dinner party by four hours while you prepare bad food. The scores were reminiscent of Princess Jen’s mathematics results – LOW. Team SA – 4; Team Qld – 4; Team NZ – 4; Team NSW – 4; Team WA – 4. Total score 20/50. Remembering Team Vic need to get more than 58 to not be on the bottom, Pete and Manu scored:
P Entree – 9; M Entree – 8
P Main – 3; M Main – 4
P Dessert – 1; M Dessert – 1
Overall score: 46/110
Carla feels ripped off that they scored so low from their fellow contestants. Pete noted there was no love in their main course. Both Pete and Manu note their dessert was horrible and remind Thomas and Carla they are in last place for Group 1. The big surprise is that it’s the bottom three teams that are up for elimination, and will have to fight to stay in the competition. Team Qld’s soldier boys look at each other and smile as they reach for their spear and mace, while Team UnZud’s Helen “feels numb” after being smacked in the back of the head with a shield by Soldier David. But before anyone understands what’s going on – it’s time for the next group to have a go.