For a change on last night’s episode of NBC’s “The Biggest Loser,” there was a happy ending. No gameplay, no formed alliances or ulterior motives…only the opportunity and the inspiration of having to all work together. And now that the contestants have scored a victory, as Mrs. Mike pointed out, the producers are going to find a way to mess with them again. What do I mean? Well, read on….

The episode began with some of the remaining hopefuls talking about sending Alexandra home in Week 1 and how bad they felt. Host Alison Sweeney gave them a proposition at that point, and said if they lost 150 pounds as a team in Week 2, no one would go home this week. If they failed to do so, however, two contestants would be sent packing. Cake, right? Not really, when you consider that Week 2 is notoriously a bounce back week where contestants typically lose 1-2 pounds or even gain weight. So as trainer Bob Harper admitted, this was a tall order.

But the contestants were determined and wanted to make this happen. Coach Mo (has there been a more likeable contestant on this show, ever?) rallied the troops as a good coach would, and enlisted the help of Danny, who had been through a Week 2 before, to let everyone know what they had to do.

Then Mo visited his teammate Tracy in the hospital, who was feeling much better and ready to return to the ranch the following day. They never tell us what is wrong or was wrong with her, though, and I’m not sure why. Back to the ranch, and in the gym Shay is noticing that Julio, who fended off elimination last week, is not working nearly as hard as everyone else.

Then to the initial challenge, where the contestants are at the California Health & Longevity Institute with celebrity chef Curtis Stone. Curtis gives them 7 tips for healthy cooking, after which they are quizzed. If they answered 5 of 8 of Alison’s questions correct, the contestants would get a 15 pound advantage at the weigh in. They got 5 right, but Mrs. Mike and I were annoyed that some of the multiple choice questions about calorie counts were too tricky. But they did it, and now only had to lose 135 pounds to keep everyone on the ranch.

Next came the main challenge, and the contestants were taken to a lake where they had to walk as a team on balance beams that got progressively thinner to reach platforms that represented prizes–5 pounds, 5 pounds, phone calls home and 10 pounds. If one of them fell in the lake, the game would be over for them all and they would only receive the points for whatever platform they last touched. In other words, this required ultimate teamwork. And while many of them were on the verge of falling in multiple times, they completed the whole thing. That meant calls home and 20 more pounds off their goal, which brought it down to 115. Bob and Jillian were not as happy as the contestants, and still wanted to work them extra-hard.

There was one funny (though I really shouldn’t laugh) moment….when Danny was talking about the fact that he wound up on this show because his young daughter said “Daddy, I want to have a big belly just like you!” Anyway, good for him that he’s doing something about it, but that was really funny how it came across.

Anyway, at the last chance workout, Bob pushed Julio like crazy, and then he and Jillian had a tug of war with Allen, which was pretty funny to watch.

Okay, on to the weigh-in. The pink team of Amanda and Rebecca went first and lost only 10 pounds, 4 and 6. They suddenly seemed worried that they let their team down. However, it got better. Mo and Tracy (purple) lost 19 pounds, and the red team of Antoine and Sean lost 19 as well. And it kept getting better. Abby and Allen (green) lost 21, Danny and Liz (brown) lost 22, and Dina and Rudy (blue) lost 22 as well.
That left them with 2 pounds to lose, and the orange team and Julio to weight in.

Uh-oh. Would Julio blow it? He couldn’t possibly have gained weight, could he? Well, no, he lost 19! That raised the weight to 132 lost, and now the contestants were thinking of reaching their original goal of 150 pounds. Shay and Danny (orange) weighed in, and lost 23 total pounds, bringing the overall total to 155. They did it, as a team, and there would be no elimination this week.

Wow, that was quite an effort by all of them, even Julio! But now we’re waiting for the other shoe to drop. Who will be sent home next week, and how many of them? Everything is warm and fuzzy, but you just know that there is a big “bridge out” sign coming. I guess that’s what they need to do to keep us watching, so let’s see what’s in store.

See you next week, and thanks for reading!