The Biggest Loser Irresponsible! Index: Season 17 Begins

(Photo: NBC)
THE BIGGEST LOSER -- Season: 17 -- Pictured: (l-r) Dolvett Quince, Bob Harper, Jennifer Widerstrom -- (Photo by: Chris Haston/NBC)

The Biggest Loser is back and more tempting than ever. Hi, Dolvett!

As a personal trainer and avid reality television fan, I find The Biggest Loser to be one of the most compelling and frustrating shows on television. Every week I rank the most appalling situations, quotes, and people on a scale from mildly irresponsible to downright dangerous.

Mildly Irresponsible

First challenge of the season involves lifting bags of “money” (really sand or something, since they weigh 30 pounds each), and Jen’s black team just has no friggin’ clue how to lift these safely. Use your legs, people! They then need to climb a very tall ladder, and yeah the ladder is tall, but how friggin’ hard is it to climb a ladder? I don’t have to tell you that the answer is: apparently really hard? Roberto falls off twice and the way he’s swinging around haphazardly, I’m amazed the NBC lawyers didn’t make them wear helmets.

Moderately Irresponsible

The trainers can now use [Unnamed Product Placement] to magically track the contestants’ activity levels moment to moment. When this is introduced to them before their first workout, their heartrates are already at around 60% of maximum. If their hearts are working that hard just to keep them standing up, they are fucked for this workout. A mostly-resting heartrate, where you’re just standing around, should be at least 20 beats per minute slower than that. More proof of how being out of shape can mess a person up! That said, I hope they’re referring to heartrate reserve, not heartrate max. There is a massive difference in expectations between the two, but God forbid we educate America on this topic.

Severely Irresponsible

Bob Harper is now the host! And I don’t know if anyone else watched the New Year’s edition of Hollywood Game Night, but he was on that, and openly mocked the Biggest Loser contestants, saying things like “waaah! I want pizza! Waaah!” There you have it, America: Bob Harper is a dick. We might bite pizzas, but Bob bites the hand that feeds him.

Criminally Irresponsible

This season is all about temptations, and they have really mixed up the format. I’m sure they are trying to make the show as compelling as possible, but to me they have made it all about the competition and the TV show, and not about weight loss. This has been a problem for many years, in fact, but was really glaring in this season premiere. There was no talk of the actual workouts. There was no talk of eating properly. There was barely any discussion of why these people want or need to lose weight. In a two-hour show about weight loss, these omissions are unforgivable. We’ll see if they end up bringing in some heart and soul in the coming weeks.

Wrap It Up

Dolvett’s red team won an 8-lb advantage at the challenge. There is a convoluted and extremely long weigh-in where they weigh in a person from each team at the same time, for what turns out to be no actual reason. After the typically infuriating “you only lost 13 pounds in one week? You lazy fucksack” talk from the trainers, Team Jen overcomes the 8-lb advantage and wins the shit out of the weigh-in. Toy and Britney (coincidentally, they are a couple – aunt and niece) are below the yellow line and up for elimination. After a tearful Silver Platter vote in the Food Cabinet Room (BTW, this is so goddamn insulting, where is the dignity?), Britney the Younger is sent home to hopefully lose weight on her own. Godspeed!

A Brief Word From Our Sponsors:

About Clare Snyder 139 Articles
After writing for a few publications in college, Clare took an extended break to become a certified personal trainer, get huge blisters during marathons, and find a suitable triathlete/engineer to marry. In her spare time she partakes in many nerd hobbies including replaying Final Fantasy hundreds of times, cheering for the Green Bay Packers, and live-tweeting "Whodunnit?" One time Clare was given 43 hot sauce packets in a Taco Bell driveway. There is a strategy to it. E-mail: clare@whatelseison.tv
Contact: Twitter