The first live episode of Opposite Worlds takes a page from the American Idol results show playbook, stretching a few minutes of content to a full hour. It’s not good TV.
If Opposite Worlds doesn’t fix its pacing problem, there is no way anyone is going to stick with this program. The first half of Wednesday’s episode was spent recapping the events of Tuesday’s episode, specifically Charles getting medevac’d from the game due to a bad tackle in the Worldly Challenge. The main event of the episode—the Duel of Destiny—did not enter it’s preamble until 33 minutes into the episode. However, we did get up-to-the-minute weather reports from host Luke Tipple, reminding us that the show is live.
Tipple does not improve as host, graduating from the school of The X Factor‘s Khloe Kardashian Odom by ask everyone “What are you feeling right now?” in the most boring extended tribal council ever. Lissette and JR are summoned, asked how they are feeling, and learn who America voted as the Decider. JR was selected with 90% of the vote. He selected Rachel from Team Chronos and his teammate Angela for the duel.
The duel is a simple obstacle course in a giant pool: up a ramp, down a ramp, under two pillars, run around a pole, then make your way back to the start. Whoever completes the most laps in three minutes wins. If you ever thought gym class would make for good television, I hate to break it to you but that is not the case. I guess Luke’s weather reports are relevant in that both women will probably have some form of hypothermia shortly after the episode ends. It isn’t much of a contest as Rachel peters out almost instantly.
In the last few minutes of the episode, we learn that JR is America’s favorite overall and will get a reward next week. Jeffry is America’s least favorite and will be punished. Okay, I guess I’m still on-board. No, wait, two more contestants will be added to the mix. Damnation.