After a commercial break, we meet last year's winner, Erik, who lost more weight than anyone ever in Biggest Loser history -- 214 pounds! Which, incidentally, was more than half his size; he started at 407. He had all kinds of health problems which righted themselves once he dropped the conjoined twin of fat he'd been carrying around. We get to relive his wife and daughters seeing him for the first time, and I have to admit that I teared up. I feel like I'm going to be bawling all season -- I'm kind of a sucker for a good inspirational story. Erik says that he's a more active dad now, and a better husband. That's so great! I love Erik. Erik tells Sami Brady that he sold his deli both because it was full of temptation and because he's become an inspirational speaker or something. If you want to get into that line of work, I suggest putting on about 120 pounds and then going on this show. Erik steps on the scale which announces that his current weight is 231 pounds, and his total loss is 176. Everyone claps, and...uhhh...is it just me or does this mean he put on almost forty pounds since the show ended? I know that's just a drop in the bucket of Crisco, but still. This would have been a great opportunity to talk about how difficult it is to keep weight off, but alas, we just move it along.
Sami introduces The Biggest Loser trainers, who have some thirty-second health tips for us. Drink water and do yoga. I have a tip for the female trainer, which is: stop terrifying people with your ugly sports bra. Put on a shirt, lady. You're on TV.
Next is Pam, who started at 247 pounds last season, and was only twenty-six years old. She has two kids. Pam sat all day at her job, and then came home and sat and watched TV for hours. TV makes you fat! Stop watching this show and go for a jog! Pam starts tearing up as she tells us that she realized how important it was to take care of her health, and how that has improved her life and the lives of her family members. She and her husband just participated in a triathlon! Go, Pam! I have to confess that as much as I like Pam, I think she's trying to hypnotize me with her eyes. Now all I can think about is Cheetos, followed by sharp pangs of guilt. Pam steps on the scale, and weighs in at 187. "That's sixty pounds!" yells Sami excitedly, as she is wont to do.
Next, another amazing transformation. Pete started at 402 pounds, and also had a lot of health problems. And now he's totally skinny! He also does some motivational speaking and works with kids and adults. His wife, who has added his excess pounds to her crazy-looking weave, is really proud of Pete. When Pete comes out, he grabs Sami and spins her around, and she yells that he's definitely embraced his life. As I keep studying her, it occurs to me that Alison Sweeney kind of looks like she's venturing into Tara Reid territory. I mean, less haggard, of course. But she's all orange and blonde and kind of tacky. Pete's wife has also become a fitness nut, and tells us all about how they put calories in their calorie bank when they eat something, and then they know they have to work them off. If I had a calorie bank, I would just crave bacon and pulled pork all day. Pete takes off his shirt when he steps on the scale, which I guess is kind of a tradition, and everyone goes crazy. I have to say, there's quite a difference in his physique. He's totally ripped. He now weighs 241 pounds, and has kept off 160 pounds. I want everyone to talk about what they did to take care of their saggy skin. Don't aspartame-coat this, Biggest Loser!Next is Poppy, who was The Biggest Loser's first at home champion She started at 232 pounds, and lost over half her body weight. Yowsa! She tells us that her weight was her fear of success. O...kay. She is really quite a bit smaller, though her head remains enormous. Poppy does exercise DVDs in a two by two foot space in what appears to be her bedroom. She is also a comedian, and had to get rid of her "big girl" material. She has plenty of other shtick though, as she talks to Sami, including an impression of her Jewish mother. She refers to the picture of her old self as a monster, which I am not down with. I mean, of course you want to be healthier, but shouldn't there be an element of being compassionate and loving toward yourself whatever your size is? She's now 126 pounds, which means she's lost 106 pounds. Pretty impressive, though I am convinced she's got issues.