The Challenge: Battle of the Seasons Power Rankings WEEK 1 – Changing of the Guard

Posted: September 20, 2012 by Keith Stone in The Challenge, TV
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It happens in every sport. From Peyton and Brady to Rodgers and Brees. From Jeter and A-Rod to Hamilton and Trout. These radical paradigm shifts don’t occur often but when they do, it happens quickly. Sometimes, like in the me-first NBA of the late 90’s, things go completely haywire and the quality of the product suffers. Luckily for us, this new crop of Challenge competitors has everything it takes to make this season one of the most memorable.

Gone are veterans like the beast CT and Paula Walnuts. In their place are perhaps the biggest collection of  rabble-rousers, miscreants, alcoholics, and skanks the world has ever seen in the most luxurious Challenge house ever. Battle of the Seasons is like a gourmet dish where all the ingredients perfectly create the ultimate taste. That makes TJ Lavin the Emeril Lagasse of it all. BAM! I can already smell the pungent aroma from the kitchen. It smells like semen and vomit—delicious! And of course, this season has the largest prize in Challenge history: four pairs of Dr. Dre headphones! Buckle you seat belts. This is going to be a bumpy ride and we don’t have a designated driver.

8. Austin
Wes was the only real veteran superstar invited to do Battle of the Seasons and he’s gone already. That’s right, there’s a new ginger sheriff in town and his name is Big Easy. Now you know things are changing. Poor form by Wes taking shots at him after losing. And what was up with his bizarre meeting after the Austin team was put up for elimination? Wes’s schtick is getting old. I was also looking forward to some Lacey. Her comment about Frank and Zach kissing penises was easily the best of the show. Despite the fact that she may have been the least athletic competitor in the history of the show, she ended up going in the HALL BRAWL elimination, and got rolled. Nice strategy. That leaves things up to Danny and Melinda (who somehow still keeps getting hotter). Did I mention that they’re divorced? Good luck with that.

7. San Diego
I didn’t watch the San Diego season because the roommates seemed appalling. Here’s what I learned about them from this episode. Frank and Taylor Kitsch are sometimes lovers. Frank may have a tiny drinking/anger problem. Ashley is hot. Sam has big boobs for a dude. Why couldn’t the Hollywood cast get back together? RIP Joey.

This Frank guy might actually be the wildest competitor we’ve ever seen. I’m sure he’s going to get kicked off or punched in the face within a week or two, but the dude really stirs shit up.

6. St. Thomas
Oh, how I missed these lovable kids ever since their show ended last week. You know this team has no chance to win with a genius like Trey as its spokesman. He’s going to pledge his loyalty to two different teams, get one of them pregnant, maintain his alliance with the other one and then awkwardly break it off. Also, isn’t it weird that Marie and Robb are still dating on the show even though we know it didn’t work out eventually? It’s like going back in a reality TV DeLorean. It also appears that Marie’s training has consisted of drinking Long Island iced teas.

The one advantage St. Thomas has is that none of the other teams have seen their show because The Challenge was filmed before their season aired. Nobody knows that Trey isn’t exactly a Rhodes scholar and Robb enjoys punching himself in the face. Let’s hope they find out soon.

5. Fresh Meat
The Fresh Meat crew had the most inauspicious surprise entrance since the Shockmaster. When TJ announced another team would be joining them, I assumed it would be an all-star lineup of Johnny Bananas, Mr. Beautiful, Jenn with 2 n’s, and Laurel, or something close. Instead, we get Big Easy? Brandon? Not mince meat but not exactly worthy of a special introduction.

The big man helped his team to victory but let’s be clear, he is going to cost them the money at some point. He is the Washington Generals of The Challenge. I know he lost 70 pounds. I know he said this is the start of a new day. But unless every elimination involves running over an opponent in a makeshift hallway, it’s not going to end well. I will continue to enjoy watching him fall off very high ledges, though. I can’t get enough of it. Also, watch for Cara freakouts. She already tried bailing on the elimination. Without Abram around to guide her, she’s a lost girl.

4. Brooklyn
The Brooklynites don’t get along very well, but Chet the Bow Tie-Wearing Mormon and especially Sarah have extensive Challenge experience, which will serve them well. This team flew under the radar, but Devyn is a huge drag. They would be better off without her and going streamlined with Sarah and Chet/JD. Bonus points for Sarah going blonde.

3. New Orleans
Really nice to see these kids again. I thought there was a lot of Challenge potential in the cast and now we’re finally going to see it unleashed. Jemmye looks like she has been enjoying her time on the bayou, especially the gumbo and bourbon. I’m sure her broken relationship with Knight will become an issue at some point, and by issue, I mean shitstorm.

Preston came through in the DON’T CROSS ME challenge but he is going to be a huge liability. I can see him getting eliminated and saying something into the camera like, “I may have lost but I proved to myself that I belong.” That don’t get you Dr. Dre headphones, homey. If lounging in a bikini on a ledge was an event, McKenzie would win five pairs of Dr. Dre headphones. This team may be the least physically imposing but most entertaining.

2. Las Vegas
Where is Roy Lee? Where is Mike Mike? As a consolation prize, we get Trishelle fresh off her runs as a pro poker player and wrestler. Hey, do what you know best, right? She’s still looking good. Along with Nany, Las Vegas has the hottest pair of chicks of any team. Two very diverse girls as well. Martin Luther King would be proud. Alton seems to have a secret admirer in Jasmine but if he’s smart, he’ll stay away.

And then there’s Dustin. Oh, Dustin. He revealed that he and Heather had a cute little roadtrip across the country before moving into the Frat Pad [NSFW!!!] together but why do I feel like he’s going to be making out with Frank at some point in the game?

1. Cancun
I loved the way this team played the game. They won the first challenge and instead of stepping softly and playing politics, they went right after the top conspirator, Wes, and eliminated him. It doesn’t hurt that Wes burned CJ during their last Challenge together, either. LMFAO would be so proud. I’m a little nervous about the females on this squad. Jasmine has always been a loose cannon, and the way Jonna dumped her guy back home was brutal. At some point, one of the two and hopefully both will be in someone’s face yelling and clapping their hands inches away from their rival’s eyes. Can’t make noise like that if you want to get through this game unscathed.

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