Welcome back, my friends, to the show that never ends — Temptation Island Two. It started at 6 episodes, then rose to 10, and now is scheduled for 12. But, as the number of episodes goes up, up, up, the number of viewers goes down, down, down.
Part 1: Bonfire of the Vanities
Following the orgy and coupled men’s bonfire at the end of the last episode, this episode begins with the coupled women’s bonfire. Once again, this bonfire is “free choice” – choosing to watch or not does not affect your partner’s choice. To start things off, Wannabe Marky Mark turns to Drama Queen Shannon. DQ Shannon drives all the other women away so they can’t see the screen, the better for her to hog all of the spotlight. She gets to see John-Boy tell Nayla that he occasionally still thinks about Shannon when he goes to sleep; the tape ends before she could see Nayla telling John-Boy that psychotherapy can rid him of those awful nightmares. DQ tells Wannabe MM that she has “no worries.” Sure, just like Osama bin Laden had no worries when he heard the “daisy cutter” bombs being dropped.
Nikkole accurately predicts that Tommy Jerk will be with “White Eyeshadow Girl (Kristen) and it will be so disappointing.” After watching the tape, Nikkole calls Kristen a “cheese ball” … but that’s not the same kind of ball that Tommy Jerk was after with Kristen. Nikkole also points out that Kristen is “not the sharpest pencil in the box” but “that’s what attracts Tommy.” You should know, Nikkole.
Catherine gets to watch Edmundo with Hilary — not the famous bathroom tape, but undeniably headed for a similar climax. Catherine cries, perhaps because she is visualizing Edmundo seeing her in the same position with Size 14 Brian.
Last up is Kelley, who passes on watching the tape. She says that she wants to be selfish while she is at Playa Tambor. Uh, why would that be different than any other time, Kelley?
As the women leave, Nikkole comments that “those cameras are better than I thought.” Could this be the first moment that she realizes that Tommy Jerk is going to get to see her interactions with FDNY Tommy's firehose? Well, she could always tell him that she wanted to see a firetruck but inadvertently left out the "iretr" in the middle.
Upon returning to their resort, the coupled women can’t wait to tell the single guys what they saw --- seems they want to make sure that the guys get the idea that all’s fair in love and whore. DQ Shannon starts weeping. New Age Tommy says that John probably likes Nayla because she’s not a “drunk lush.” Good call. Then DQ says that, if John cheats on her, it’s all over between them. The remaining ten TIT viewers in the world begin cheering for John and Nayla to go all the way….
Part 2: Mail Call!
Wow, what a thrill: TIT executive producer Chris Cowan comes on camera. As some of you may be aware, Chris Cowan is co-owner of TIT’s producer, Rocket Science Productions … but he clearly is no rocket scientist himself. He tells Wannabe Marky Mark that DQ Shannon has been trying to communicate with John-Boy at the poolside events, in violation of a rule in the TIT Commandments of Conduct. Because it's my solemn duty as a summary writer to fill in missing details, I managed to acquire a copy of the TIT Commandments of Conduct, and here it is in its entirety:
Temptation Island Two Commandments of Conduct
Rule 1: Thou shalt whore thyself at all times and in all manners. Rule 2: Thou shalt not save thyself for thine mate. Rule 3: When in doubt, thou shalt see Rule 1.
Based on this, DQ Shannon’s letters to John-Boy must have been a violation of #2. Anyway, Wannabe Rocket Scientist Cowan tells Wannabe Marky Mark to go look for notes that Shannon, who has now reverted to 7th-grade behavior, has left for John-Boy.
Wannabe MM runs to get his 40-watt flashlight, which he shines brightly in front of him, while the cinematographer cleverly structures shots so that the 10,000-watt camera lights don’t drown out the flashlight beam. The search for Shannon’s notes reminded me of The Postman (aka “The Worst Movie Ever Made By Hollywood”) – not because the scenes were similar, but because both had the same commitment to quality.
In the bathroom, MM finds several notes from Shannon stuffed into plastic bags, which he quickly holds up in front of the camera, just long enough for us to pick out the cuss words. But, through the miracles of stop-action, I have been able to capture the entire transcript of one of the letters for you (you’re welcome):
This is your lovey-dovey Shannon writing to you. I know I held my breath until I turned blue to get you to come to Playaland with me. But now I wanna go home. I want to have you f@#k my brains out again. Oh, that’s right, you told me you couldn’t do that because I don’t have any brains. Well, try your best.
I have been watching your tapes at bonfire. If you think you’re going to humiliate me on national TV with that little wench Nayla, you’ve got another thought coming. I can humiliate myself just fine without any help from you. If I see you getting intimate with that bimbo, you’re going to be singing the high parts in the choir from now on, got it? I mean, other than class, a steady job, nice manners and a personality, what’s she got that I haven’t got?
I can’t wait to get home and make rabbit stew. I’ve already boiled the bunny. Wasn’t that a pet of yours?
Love and kisses, in sickness and in health,
P.S. Castrato, isn’t that the word? Or is it gelded? And I ain’t kiddin’.
In a confessional, DQ Shannon says that, even though it was her idea, being on Temptation Island sucks, and not in the same way that Hilary and Edmundo would have interpreted that term. Hey, she’s right, and she didn’t have to go to Costa Rica to find that out. All she had to do was look at the name of this Web site: “TemptationIslandSucks.” We didn’t just make that up, DQ! But it’s too late now, baby – all of America now knows that Temptation Island isn’t the only thing that sucks when you are around.
Part 3: I’m Late, I’m Late, for a Very Important Date
Only two dates left: this one is a surprise date; the coupled person is supposed to wake the temptor/temptress of choice up and inform them that there are only a few minutes to get ready. I guess the idea is that no primping is allowed (but, as always, pimping appears to be OK). Surprise! Catherine picks Rossi, not Brian. Surprise surprise! John-Boy picks White Eyeshadow Girl (aka Kristen), not Nayla. Other new choices: Shannon with world champion windsurfer Kevin, Mark with “model/actress” Debbie, Edmundo with Amanda, Tommy Jerk with Linda, Kelley with Ali. Old choice: Nikkole with FDNY Tommy.
Kelley proves to have been an astute judge of character when she kept Ali around because, in her words, he made her laugh. Ali comes across as both funny and charming. Mark, on the other hand, has already told us that he's looking for a woman who can both turn heads and fit comfortably under his ego, and Debbie appears to fill both roles, exciting Mark. Apparently Debbie is looking for something of hers to be filled as well; they advance to kissing and then … Charming couple.
John-Boy says he chose Kristen because she was the only one who asked about Shannon. Perhaps she found one of the notes before MM came through to claim them? In fact, John is feeling very nostalgic for Shannon, and so he and Kristen go to see the closest thing to her on the island: the crocodiles. Kristen says that her party girl image was exaggerated, just before she offers to whip off all of her clothes for John’s benefit. Meanwhile, Shannon takes Kevin out for some deep diving … he is very disappointed when he finds out that his diving will be limited to the Pacific. Shannon says that Kevin’s passion for his career makes him exciting. Shannon, of course, is equally passionate about her career as a professional goldddigger and drama queen. Unfortunately for this show, that’s the only thing she is passionate about. Time to readjust the stick, Shannon.
Speaking of drama queens, Rossi pouts during his entire date with Catherine, which involves hiking to a waterfall, swimming, then hiking back. Seems like it should be a fun date, but all Rossi can do is bitch about his rival Brian. When Catherine complains about having to choose between the two men, Rossi reacts like … like Shannon. Ouch. Hasn’t he ever heard of wooing? Meanwhile, Edmundo’s date with Amanda creates nice visuals on the zip lines over the rainforest but no sparks. Apparently, Edmundo has decided to save “Old Sparky” for that evening – and a different temptress.
FDNY Tommy and Nikkole go windsurfing. Nikkole figures out how to do it right away, gets her sail erected and has fun. Tommy is very embarrassed, because he never gets up on the board or gets the sail up during the whole date. Despite the fact that he doesn’t get it up, Nikkole comforts him, telling him that she’s had a lot of experience with men not being able to get it up when they are with her… Finally, last and certainly least, Tommy Jerk goes hiking with Linda but shows no interest in her. Instead, he claims to be thinking about Nikkole – or perhaps, how difficult it is to find a woman with so little self-respect that she’d be interested in him. White Eyeshadow Girl, where are you when TJ needs you?
Upon returning from their date, Mark pushes Debbie into the pool to show he likes her. Hmmm, shoving a girl down to show you like her --- fourth grade, right? Well, we now know Mark’s mental age. Debbie appears to be similarly underendowed between her ears, as she goes and lies in a hammock together with Mark, so that they can listen to each other’s heartbeats, or something like that. Mark says that his finding a girl like Debbie was just what Kelley most feared. No, Mark, returning home with you was what Kelley most feared.
Edmundo ditches Amanda, and Linda ditches Tommy Jerk, and the two of them hook back up at the pool. Edmundo, who thinks he’s figured out how to avoid the night-vision cameras, takes Linda to a tent on the beach. Product development manager Linda gets several samples of Edmundo’s product for further development. Linda says she’s excited about where this relationship might lead. Poor Linda. Evidently she suffers from the same loss of short-term memory as the main character in Memento, because it’s obvious to the rest of humanity that her sexual relationship with Edmundo will lead her to the same place that it led the now-departed Tiffani and the now-departed Hilary.
Finally, we see the much-anticipated scene from the previews, as Nikkole walks into her room, sees her roommate Catherine in what is sometimes referred to as a “compromising position” with Size 14 Brian, and then runs to get Rossi. Since Rossi had already spent the whole day pouting, perhaps Nikkole hoped to see a full-scale blowup … but Rossi acts nonchalant instead. Too bad.
Part 4: Jump into the (Bon)Fire
At breakfast the next morning, the coupled women hear a call to bonfire. Catherine says that she gets nauseous every time she hears the call to bonfire. Sure it isn’t morning sickness, Catherine? However, the bonfire isn’t shown … in fact, the whole day isn’t shown. Why? Did Shannon finally lose it and require a straitjacket? Did Catherine get to see Edmundo’s product development exercises with Linda? Well, probably not, or we would have seen some of it.
Instead, the rest of the day disappears – looks like it was a break day for the camera crew. The next thing we know, it’s that evening and the coupled men are at bonfire. Wannabe Marky Mark tells the men that this is their next-to-last bonfire, and that (if they choose) the men can see a videotape of their girlfriends shot while the women were unaware they were being taped. John goes first and sees footage of Shannon sleeping next to his picture. Instead of being depressed, as any normal male being pursued by Shannon would be, he gets so excited that he even gives Mark a hug, which means that he will have to be deloused later. Sorry, Nayla, but judging by John's reaction here, Shannon still has him wrapped around her finger.
Edmundo also watches ... and sees Catherine making out with Size 14 on the beach in night vision. Edmundo says that it bothers him to see “another dude working my chick.” Uh, Eddie, if it bothers you to see this, imagine how Catherine felt while watching you and Hilary … or how she will feel while watching you and Linda!
Apparently, all of the coupled men have decided that it's now time to check up on their other halves, because Mark also chooses to watch. He gets to see Kelley enter New Age Tommy’s room, but the clip doesn’t show if they engage in any further activity. Mark is frustrated – a feeling he didn’t have when he and Donna were finished the day before. Mark could use his imagination ... but you might as well tell him to use his psychic powers, 'cause he's got just about the same amount of each.
Last, and still least, comes Tommy Jerk, who decides that he was saved for last because his tape was the best. And so it is, as it shows FDNY Tommy and Nikkole engaged in some heavy petting, and it doesn't look like they're about to stop there. Tommy says that he is burning up inside and that he has a hard time dealing with this. I guess that he wanted to test his market value, the same way Kaya did, but he now knows that his market value is perilously close to Enron’s. And it seems like the market has reached equilibrium, TJ. Better go hunt up White Eyeshadow Girl again.
Next time: The end draws near at long last, as everyone positions themselves for the final dates.