Now we’re really in it. The Challenge: Bloodlines is underway and it’s already proving to be one of the most compelling Challenge seasons in years, even with contestants we still don’t really know. That’s because, like I said last week, there are real families at stake here.
As we see in tonight’s episode, literal bloodlines are tested, and for the first time in Challenge history (dun dun dun), we actually see someone cast off a family member for their MTV fam. We always knew these folks were close offscreen, but seeing Jenna rail on Brianna (more on that later) is rough. It’s also a reminder of how deep this cast’s internal relationships run and why the franchise has become one of the best competition shows on TV. There’s history.
Episode 2 carried with business as usual — secret hook ups, gross eating contest, etc. — but our indomitable host dropped a huge bomb at the end of “Bad Blood.” After this week’s losers were sent home, Lavin announced, “Let’s see how you’d do if you were pitted against each other.” Yep, the teams are switching up in episode 3. Sister vs. sister, twin vs. twin. It’s going down.
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But until then, we’ll continue ranking these teams in terms of screen time, maniacal behavior, and general insanity to determine the Bloodline Rankings. Let’s get at it.
1. Jenna and Brianna
Oh man. Watching Jenna and Brianna on tonight’s episode was like watching the devolution of a family. During the challenge portion of the episode, Jenna had her head inside the snake box and Brianna was picked to chew up the live bugs. But she didn’t. All those bugs stayed alive and in a confessional, she admitted, “I feel like this isn’t for me, and I wanna go home.” Although they came in last place, they were saved from the Pit because it was a guys week. But that didn’t stop them from destroying each other later.
After a night out at da club, the truth came out: Brianna really, really, really doesn’t want to be here. Some people aren’t made for reality TV. Some aren’t built for The Challenge, and that’s totally cool, unless you’re forced to be there by your cousin. As they fight at the house, both women bring out the deep, dark digs to claw at one another. Brianna wants to go home right now and calls Jenna selfish. “She doesn’t have her life together. I’m smarter than her.” Jenna fights back and claims Brianna’s boyfriend back home cheats on her. “She thinks you’re all idiots,” Jenna tells the rest of the cast before slamming her for having a job at her dad’s bakery. “If my dad wasn’t in jail, I’d have a set job, too,” she says. As they swap gnarly disses back and forth, Jenna says if Brianna leaves, she’ll never speak to her again. It’s clear Jenna has chosen her family, and it’s not Brianna.
But as the women wake up the next morning, Brianna says she’ll try to stick it out for Jenna. Therein lies the beauty of Bloodlines. Brianna and Jenna will still have to deal with each other when they go home, hell they’ll have to deal with each other for the rest of their lives. The Challenge could quite literally destroy a family.
NEXT: Sorry you had to postpone your wedding for this!
2. Dario and Raphy
Here’s a rookie team no one (me) thought much of: Dario’s from Are You the One? All they do is party. Not great contenders, right? Right. But we’ll probably never know because as soon as Cara Maria says she’s going to send them into the Pit, they get MAD, and Cara’s like, “Okay! We won’t send you in because you’re mad!” Huh?
If all you have to do to avoid the Pit is get angry and say things like, “BEHOLD THE WRATH OF THE TWINS!” these guys are set until the final. What a power move.
3. Cara Maria and Jamie
Cara Maria and Jamie won this week’s challenge, but they’re high up on this list more for Cara’s antics. We don’t know or care what went on in the backseat of the van between her and Thomas — rock, paper, scissors, you say! — but Cara ditches her allegiance to Thomas, even though she keeps mentioning what “good friends” they are and throws him and Stephen into the Pit to placate her buddy Cohutta. Big reveal of the night: She’s still dating Abram (who’s expected to show up on Bloodlines soon), and they live together in Montana. Boom.
4. Nany and Nicole
Nany and Nicole will win awards for “Best Person to Get You to Talk About a Fight for the Cameras” and “Most Likely to Hold Back Someone in Said Fight” based on the way they handled Jenna and Brianna.
6. Thomas and Stephen
Even “rock, paper, scissors” couldn’t keep Thomas and Stephen out of the Pit, but Thomas defeats Cohutta in the elimination round, which was basically a wrestling match. Poor Cohutta didn’t stand a chance, though shoutout to Thomas and Stephen for intimidating some of these folks with their Division 1 tennis chops. “Hope it’s not ping-pong,” Cohutta said with deep, deep sadness.
7. Cohutta and Jill
Bye, Cohutta. We hardly knew ye. Bye Jill, sorry you had to postpone your wedding for this. (Did you know she had to postpone her wedding for this?)
NEXT: Ban Tony
7. Bananas and Vince
+20 to the producers for not letting these guys eat up all the airtime this episode.
8. KellyAnne and Anthony
Were they in this episode?
9. Leroy and Candice
“Super cute,” I wrote twice in my notes about these two.
10. Cory and Mitch
12 and 11. Aneesa and Rianna & Camila and Larissa
We want more Aneesa and Rianna! We want more Camila and Larissa!
13. Tony and Shane
If we turned this recap into an “Every Time Tony Says Something Misogynistic” drinking game, we’d be wasted by the end of this episode. Ban Tony.