The eighth episode of “The Challenge: Spies, Lies and Allies” saw the return of full-length episodes featuring a challenge and an elimination and it went a long way in setting the scene for an explosive second half of the season. The episode, “The Threat,” saw “the cocky Veterans threaten the remaining Rookies,” the description stated.
“One bold Rookie comes up with a plan to detonate the Veteran’s stronghold on the game. With her back against the wall, Berna calls out all of her rivals in an explosive manner. The competitors take on the deep seas during the ‘Dive Bomb’ mission.”
Warning: This article contains spoilers for the eighth episode of “The Challenge: Spies, Lies and Allies” which aired on September 29 at 8 p.m. Eastern and Pacific times.
The new team formed last week, Emy Alupei and CT Tamburello, had a strong challenge this episode and formed The Agency, but they didn’t have any major decisions to make as the house decided to vote in Hughie Maughan and Berna Canbeldek while Jeremiah White and Priscilla Anyabu were picked to go in as two untested rookies. Jeremiah and Priscilla won the matchup and created a big reshuffle among the teams with no more rookie-rookie teams left.
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The Episode Starts By Setting the Scene of the Rookie Vs. Veteran Showdown
The episode begins with a lot of conversations about how the rookies are easily getting picked off and because they no longer have the majority, the only way they can avoid having four rookies in elimination each time is by having no more rookie-rookie teams. That can be achieved by a rookie choosing a veteran from a veteran-veteran team if they win their elimination.
We see Tula “Big T” Fazakerley comforting Berna after she got her partner CT taken by Emy. It’s interesting that Big T is being so supportive after the apparent betrayal because she said in the past couple of episodes how bored she was of Amber Borzotra talking about being blindsided.
In this segment, Devin Walker reveals that he knows Berna voted for Devin and Amber and that’s why CT was happy to change partners. Devin addressed that in last week’s “Aftermath” episode and said although the vote is secret, CT was able to see it since he was standing right behind her.
The Mission Is a Water Challenge That Looks Like a Movie Scene But Doesn’t Require Much Swimming Skill
The mission this week, “Dive Bomb,” is yet another physical challenge involving a puzzle and a detonation, which seems to be the theme for all the challenges so far this season. They’re a good way to test the ability of the teams to be well-rounded and this challenge’s three heats were easier to follow than other missions thanks to the on-screen prompts about who was in the lead.
For this challenge, contestants have some supercool jetskis that look like props out of a James Bond movie but the drawback was that it made the water challenge not really rely on swimming strength at all. Normally, a challenge like this would really separate teams with strong swimmers from the rest of the pack, but instead, it comes down to the puzzle for most teams and it feels a bit like a wasted opportunity.
Logan Sampedro calls out Jeremiah’s lack of swimming skills in a funny confessional: “Jeremiah is from Mississippi. There is a river called Mississippi and you can practice. So bad.” There is another humorous moment as Kyle Christie and Amanda Garcia have back-to-back confessionals where both are saying the other one should be responsible for the puzzles in the team. It’s surprising we haven’t seen more chaos from this team so far.
In the second heat, we learn that Hughie and Berna don’t win their group, making it clear that the rest of the episode will be straightforward with Hughie and Berna going into elimination. CT and Emy are the overall winners and it’s great to see their team chemistry, with Emy being overwhelmed at the win while CT says, “Hey, be cool, be cool.”
There Is Almost No Deliberation or Politicking & It’s Very Easy to Know Who Is Going Into Elimination
The downside of the format of not having a tribunal or the worst team going straight to elimination is that it’s made the nominations and politics of the game almost non-existent so far. The veterans are all on board for the rookie bloodbath and as soon as there’s one clear rookie-rookie team going in, it makes the 20-minute nomination scene virtually useless.
There is a potentially interesting moment where Amber reveals she’s thinking about going down into the Lair to help Jeremiah win and eliminate Berna and it shows that she’s still very inexperienced even though she’s a champion. Kaycee Clark and Josh Martinez talk her down but it seems a little too confident from Amber, especially as there’s no skull twist.
The rookies who haven’t gone in yet seem to assume it’s their turn to go down and no one is fighting to avoid elimination. In previous seasons, strong rookies were thrown in time after time because, as the cast members often explain, it’s easier to say a name you’ve already said, but that hasn’t been the case this season as every rookie is lining up to pay their dues in the Lair.
Jeremiah’s rationale for wanting to go in is to get a stronger partner than Big T but so far, Jeremiah hasn’t done much to showcase his strengths as a partner as he flopped this week and on the swimming challenge earlier this season.
Priscilla Makes a Name for Herself in the Elimination & With Her Power Move That Follows
The elimination is “Race to Escape” and we find out it’s Priscilla and Jeremiah against Hughie and Berna. The contestants are tied back to back on either side of a pole and they have to climb up with their wrists tied and then cut their ropes at the top of the pole. Priscilla and Jeremiah put on a clinic and get up the pole very quickly while Berna is slowed down by Hughie on the other side.
We get a good peek at Priscilla’s abilities as a competitor and her calm, level head during the elimination. After Hughie’s “disasster” (great job to the editing team on that one!) the “Big Brother UK” star and his partner Berna are eliminated from the game. The two were definitely big personalities on the show whether they were liked by fans and castmates or not so hopefully they can return in the future.
Priscilla then makes a big move by choosing one of the only veteran-veteran teams to infiltrate, taking Josh to be her partner and all I can say is thank you! The veteran alliance was getting too predictable and this shakeup is just what the show and the “Challenge” house need to get some exciting episodes in the next few weeks.
Jeremiah chooses Tori Deal while Nelson Thomas and Big T end up together. Ed Eason and Ashley Mitchell form the fourth new team of the week as the episode ends and we get some great hints of the fallout that’s just around the corner.
“The Challenge: Spies, Lies and Allies” airs on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. Eastern and Pacific times on MTV.