The Challenge: Double Agents recap: The people vs. Toxic T
Who was eliminated in episode 9, "Lady Vengeance?"
After last week's horrible challenge structure on The Challenge: Double Agents, this week returns to a tried and true daily challenge: trivia! Plus, Theresa finally pays for her aggressive gameplay when the entire house — and I mean the entire house (minus Aneesa) — targets her. Let's get to recappin'!
With all five male skulls earned, Cory's feeling the pressure now that he has to steal a skull, Josh is riding the high from his first win, and Amber M. is officially the first female rogue agent roaming the house. Since she's exempt from the next challenge and elimination, she's feeling confident for the first time in this game, and she confronts Amber B. for lying to her face and voting for her last week. It's the battle of the Ambers! There's just so much rookie drama that I honestly don't care about since we haven't seen any of them win anything yet.
Onto the drama that actually matters: Nany admits to Kam that she does not want to go against Theresa in an elimination because Theresa's beat her in the past. But all the women want to see Theresa go up against someone who can take her out in an elimination, and that won't be a rookie. It's got to be a formidable vet or else Theresa's getting handed a skull. Meanwhile, Theresa and Cory bond over being parents and Theresa opens up to him about her experience with postpartum depression. It's amazing to see her speaking so honestly on an issue that is hardly talked about openly, especially on TV. Cory is touched to see Theresa trusting him so much, but is that enough to make him fully support "Toxic T" when the whole house is against her?
The Challenge: Mission Interrogation
It's trivia time, y'all! A.k.a. time to expose just how dumb some of these players really are. After some especially awkward product placement tie-ins, we learn the winners of this round get $5,000 each, so that's not too shabby.
There's a fun twist to this season's trivia — usually, when players get three strikes, either for answering incorrectly or getting bombed by another player, they're launched into the water and eliminated immediately. This time around, if they get an answer wrong or are sabotaged by another team, they're lowered towards the 45-degree freezing water below and can still hang on to the bar above them for as long as they can. Whoever hangs on the longest or answers the most questions right, wins. I love this new layer to the game, especially because the difficulties of the questions vary and this gives everyone a better shot at controlling their own fate.
In the first heat, Darrell immediately freaks out at the height while Cory immediately bombs a question because he doesn't know what a square root is. And this is why I love trivia! CT gets an answer about Area 51's location right because he freely admits he's stormed its gates looking for aliens. CT, an alien chaser? Who would have thought?! Darrell gets a question wrong because he doesn't know that TJ's name is Thomas Joseph (and real talk, neither did I!) After a few rounds of questions, Aneesa is the first to fall. Soon after, Kyle slips but hangs on to the bar while shrieking. During that commotion, Nany apologizes to Josh and lets go of the bar, falling into the water before Kyle finally let go. After Cory sabotages him, CT falls next, and Cory follows soon after. Kaycee falls next after bombing a super simple question about wolves being vegetarians (obviously false!), then Lolo, and then Devin, making Darrell the winner of the first heat.
In the second heat, Big T gets her first question wrong but hangs on. Theresa chooses not to sabotage her because she's in tears, but Fessy immediately sabotages Big T next because we all now know his M.O. isn't targeting strong players. Ugh, Fessy, you just keep on showing your true colors! Big T immediately falls. Soon it becomes clear that all the rookies are targeting Amber B. and all the vets are targeting Theresa. After revealing that she thinks MI6 is an American program, Amber B. finally falls into the water. And Theresa is the next to go, taking a hard fall on her back. After sabotaging Josh, Gabby falls into the water. Josh falls next, then Leroy, then Fessy. And though Kam and Nam were the only ones left, Kam kept grabbing the sides of the bar, ultimately getting DQed after her final warning, so Nam is declared the winner of the heat.
So who won overall? TJ announces that Darrell actually hung on longer than Nam, meaning he and his partner Amber B. won. So now all the focus on the rookie drama makes sense because Amber B. actually has some power in the game. And along with their $5,000 prize money each, they get to open two top-secret briefcases containing "Whopper VIP" cards — and TJ reveals that means they get whoppers for life. Lifetime supply of food? Amazing! But when that food is Whoppers? Not so great! But hey, they'll never go hungry. And Darrell's kids are going to love that prize.
Back at the house, Darrell knows that it's most likely a female elimination week because Amber M. is the rogue agent in need of the elimination loser's partner, so he says that he'll take a backseat to Amber B.'s politics and her decision of who to send in. At Club COVID that night, Kyle, Gabby, and Amber M. decide to rally the house vote to be Theresa, and Nany convinces Amber B. not to target someone like Gabby out of emotion but rather think about who would win the final, a.k.a. Theresa. And that means throwing someone like Kaycee or Lolo against Theresa in elimination to take her out. So Amber B. immediately goes to Kaycee and asks how she would feel going against Theresa. Kaycee feels confident because she knows Amber B. isn't going to go in herself.
The deliberation gets awkward pretty quickly when Theresa asks Nany if she wants to volunteer this week and Nany coldly says she'll wait until the next week. They're both laying their cards on the table without actually being up front, and I'm living for how uncomfortable this all is. Theresa finally asks point blank if she's the house vote and Amber M. is the only one willing to admit that's where her vote is going. Say what you will about Amber M.'s skills in this game, at least she's got the balls to face her targets head on (at least in conversations).
After voting, Darrell and Amber B. enter the chamber to learn who the compromised agents are, and Darrell is shocked to hear that Amber B. isn't really planning on going into the elimination herself, even though this might be their only shot. Then it's revealed that Theresa and Cory are indeed the compromised agents, voted for by Fessy, Devin, Gabby, Amber M., Lolo, Nam, Josh, Nany, Kyle, Kam, Leroy, Kaycee, Big T, and CT, so pretty much the whole house except Aneesa. And Darrell continues to agree to go along with whatever plan Amber B. decides when they get to The Crater. If this was a male elimination, things would be very different, but Darrell has no skin in this game.
Walking into The Crater, it's immediately clear that it's a physical elimination setup, so there's no way that Amber B. is going to take it. She was already showing so much fear about going into an elimination without knowing it would be super physical, and that's why she's not really a threat in this game.
TJ reveals Theresa and Cory to be the compromised agents, and no surprise here but Amber B. doesn't take it for herself. She also says she doesn't know if it's a headbanger and that she doesn't know what she's "looking at" in The Crater, even though it's clearly the same setup as the Wes vs. Devin elimination from earlier in the season. Darrell's frustrated with his partner, but they both vote for Kaycee and Leroy. And even though TJ tries to create some tension by saying he'd love to see Cory fight Leroy for his skull, he reveals it's of course a female elimination. Time for a Theresa vs. Kaycee showdown!
Elimination challenge: Operation Snapping Point. This is actually a combination of Wes and Devin's tug-of-war elimination and Kyle and Joseph's three rings elimination. Players are attached to each other by a rope and must fight to get to the opposite ends of The Crater. Whoever places their three rings on three separate posts first, wins. Theresa's a Challenge beast, but Kaycee's got her on weight and brute strength (she's a former football player!), so this might not be Theresa's night.
The horn blows and Kaycee immediately gets her first ring, setting the tone for the rest of the elimination. And it's a brutal battle of inches. Adding in the three separate rings makes this a much more difficult win to pull off, but Kaycee outmatches Theresa. Kaycee finally gets her second ring before Theresa can get her first, and it's basically game over for Theresa at that point. Kaycee finally gets her third, sending "Toxic T" home and getting her gold skull. And Kaycee chooses to stick with Leroy as her partner, meaning Cory is now partnered with Amber M.
Challenger of the week: Darrell for facing his fear of heights and winning trivia, plus having to deal with a partner who's too afraid to do what's necessary in this game and get a gold skull. Hopefully, when it's a male elimination, Darrell will get his shot.