'The Biggest Loser: Couples' eliminates Neill and Amanda Harmer
By Christopher Rocchio, 01/16/2008
Neill Harmer was knocked for not trying his hardest during workouts -- and he eventually dragged his wife Amanda down with him, as the Bethany, OK couple became the third team eliminated from The Biggest Loser: Couples during last night's broadcast of the NBC reality show's fifth season.
"People didn't think that Neill had worked hard enough to earn his right to stay," said Amanda following her duo's ouster.
"I'm a little bit offended by that," added Neill. "Because after the first week, I was working just as hard if not harder than everybody else in that house."
"I feel because of the way we went out we have a little something to prove," said Amanda. "We'll just have to prove to everybody when we come back in April [for the finale] that they were wrong."
"We will," said Neill.
The Biggest Loser: Couples' third episode began with host Alison Sweeney revealing that the duo with the highest weight-loss percentage at each week's weigh-in will be rewarded.
"Mother and Son" Jackie and Dan Evans had the highest weight-loss percentage for the first two weigh-ins, and were thus rewarded. Alison told them to climb to the top of a hill, where there would be three envelopes -- labeled luxury, family and game play -- waiting for them under a tree, and they could pick whichever one they wanted.
On the way up the hill, Jackie was afraid it would be her and Dan's week to "hit the wall" on the scale and was "leaning" towards the game play envelope. While they thought of picking luxury or family, they decided on game play and were rewarded with the ability to cast two votes at the upcoming elimination instead of just one.
Both were happy with their reward despite the other rewards, which included a 24-hour family member visit or free massages for a week.
The eight remaining teams all trained and then trained some more. While Neill felt like he was becoming more comfortable at The Biggest Loser campus and was beginning to work harder -- some of his competitors weren't so sure -- and still didn't think he was pulling as much weight in the workouts as Amanda. Neill didn't help his cause when trainer Bob Harper had to keep telling him to take his hands off the treadmill while working out.
Meanwhile trainer Jillian Michaels worked with Alison Vincent -- who is competing with her mom Bette Sue Burkland. Ali told Jillian she gains weight as an "excuse" and as a way to "protect" herself, explaining her parents divorced when she was a kid and adding she still has some emotional problems with Bette Sue. Jillian suggested Ali confront Bette Sue so they can have a "more complete relationship."
The eight remaining teams then met for The Biggest Loser: Couples' third Reward Challenge, with the previous two both won by "Brothers" Mark and Jay Kruger.
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Alison explained this Survivor-like challenge would "test alliances," as one member from each duo would run through a pool of water, retrieve a medicine ball, and run back to the start, where they could place the ball on a rack belonging to any of the other teams. Once a team's rack is full, they're eliminated and the last duo standing wins. Since the challenge had several Survivor qualities, it was only natural the prize was immunity at the next weigh-in (there was no idol).
Alliances quickly formed, as Mark and Jay; Bette Sue and Ali; and "Former Football Teammates" Roger Shultz and Trent Patterson teamed up. Jackie and Dan and "Strangers" Brittany Aberle and Bernardo Salazar also aligned, and decided they'd eliminate Mark and Jay as fast as possible.
The competition began, and Jackie got yelled at by Jay for telling her alliance to fill-up Mark and Jay and Bette Sue and Ali's racks. Jackie and Dan were targeted since they already had two votes at the upcoming elimination, and the other teams didn't want them to have all the power.
Jackie and Dan were the first duo out of the competition, followed by Neill and Amanda and Mark and Jay. Mark also criticized Jay for inviting Bernie to put the nail in the coffin when he was still trying to decide where to place his ball. "Divorced Couple" Kelly Fields and Paul Marks; Bette Sue and Ali; and Bernie and Brittany were all eliminated before Roger placed his final ball on "Best Friends" Maggie King and Jennifer Widder's rack. Roger and Trent won immunity.
"It feels great to have immunity because we get another week out here," said Roger. "We know we're guaranteed another week out here, and I think that's the most important part."
All of the teams retreated to their rooms, and Amanda expressed her concern to Neill that the other teams don't know how to read him and she also wondered how well-liked they are. In addition, she also didn't think the other teams took him seriously. Amanda advised he "lay low" for the next few days. Neill called Amanda a "people pleaser" and was unsure if the plan would work.
Jackie and Dan were the only teams who worked out following the challenge, and they began to gossip about when Mark yelled at Jay, which was apparently a hot topic of conversation among the other teams as well. Jay caught wind everyone was talking about it and told Mark what he had heard.
"I really don't give a f**k," replied Mark. "If I stay above that yellow line, it doesn't make a f**king difference!"
Jay reminded Mark The Biggest Loser is a "game" and told him to try and keep his cool. Brittany confronted Mark and Jay and explained all the other teams didn't like to see Mark intimidating his brother and described it as "extreme." Mark explained the two act the same way at home -- and while he apologized to the group -- he was still upset he had to "eat crow."
All of the teams participated in their last-chance workouts, and once again Neill couldn't keep his hands off the treadmill, causing Jillian to add five minutes to everyone else's workout. As Bette Sue and Ali worked on strengthening their relationship with the help of Jillian as a mediator, the teams prepared for the upcoming weigh-in.
"We learned so much in these past two weeks, I can't help but think there's that much more to learn," said Amanda. "So we'd love to stick around."
The Biggest Loser: Couples' third weigh-in then commenced, with the two teams who have the lowest weight-loss percentage finding themselves below the yellow line and thus up for elimination. The contestants who are safe would have only one hour after the weigh-in to make their decision on who to boot.
Since Trent and Roger were immune from elimination, they went first. Trent started the week at 401 and lost 13 pounds while Roger began at 340 and dropped nine pounds for a combined weight loss of 22 pounds or a 2.97% weight-loss percentage. Jackie started at 223 and shed seven pounds while Dan began at 277 and lost 12 pounds for a combined weight loss of 19 pounds or a 3.80% weight-loss percentage.
Jenn started at 240 and dropped four pounds while Maggie began at 227 and shed six pounds for a combined weight loss of 10 pounds or a 2.14% weight-loss percentage.
"When I saw 10 pounds, I knew we were going to be near the yellow line," said Maggie. "I didn't think it was looking good for us."
Mark started at 261 and dropped 12 pounds while Jay began at 275 and shed seven pounds for a combined weight loss of 19 pounds or a 3.54% weight-loss percentage. Bette Sue began at 239 and lost eight pounds while Ali started at 212 and dropped six pounds for a combined weight loss of 14 pounds or a 3.10% weight-loss percentage.
Brittany started at 210 and shed seven pounds while Bernie began at 261 and dropped 13 pounds for a combined weight loss of 20 pounds or a 4.25% weight-loss percentage. Neill began at 298 and shed six pounds while Amanda began at 190 and lost five pounds for a combined weight loss of 11 pounds or a 2.25% weight-loss percentage.
"Five pounds isn't a horrible number or anything. It's nothing to be ashamed of," said Amanda. "But Neill's never turned in a great, big number like the rest of the guys. That's where the disappointment came from."
"I wasn't so disappointed in Amanda, I was more disappointed in myself," said Neill. "Just started thinking what I could have done better all week."
Needing to lose at least 12 pounds to stay above the yellow line, Paul and Kelly were the final team to step on the scale. Paul started at 283 and shed 14 pounds while Kelly began at 257 and dropped nine pounds for a combined weight loss of 23 pounds or a 4.26% weight-loss percentage.
By 0.01%, Paul and Kelly had the highest weight-loss percentage for the third week over Brittany and Bernie. Jenn and Maggie and Neill and Amanda had the lowest weight-loss percentages for the third week of the competition, placing them below the yellow line and up for elimination.
"I really hope the group will see to it that we get a second chance and get to hang around a little longer," opined Amanda. "I hope we're still around tomorrow."
Jenn and Maggie packed, and while it was their second time below the yellow line, they tried to remain positive. Neill and Amanda also packed, and Amanda decided it was a good idea to let the other teams know how badly they want to stay in the competition.
"We just want you guys to know that we know [Curtis and Mallory Bray] went home last week because everybody said they were so strong and they had a good support system at home," said Amanda through tears as she addressed the group. "We are strong together but I just don't think it's time for us to go yet. I think we have a lot of work to do still -- as much as we'd love to be home with our son -- I just don't think we're ready yet."
Neill added they weren't trying to "sway any votes" or "politic it out." Roger was hoping for more from Neill.
"I think everybody was expecting Neill to kind of step up to the plate and really take charge and say, 'Hey, I want to be here. My attitude has changed,'" explained Roger. "That didn't happen."
Not surprisingly, Mark and Jay; Brittany and Bernie; Trent and Roger: and Jackie all cast their votes to eliminate Neill and Amanda, who became the third team booted from the competition.
"I hate that they didn't believe in us and believe in our ability," said Amanda after the votes were revealed. "I'm proud of Neill. I think he's done an amazing job. I think he still doesn't realize how strong he really is."
"I hate that people see me as a slacker," said Neill.
After Neill and Amanda said their goodbyes, Alison had a surprise for the seven remaining teams.
"The Biggest Loser is about to enter into a new phase. In a minute, I'm going to ask you guys to make a very important decision -- the consequences of which will affect not just the next week, but probably the rest of the game. I have to ask you a question: If you could vote off one more team right now, who would it be?"
The Biggest Loser: Couples next episode will air Tuesday, January 22 at 8PM ET/PT on NBC.