What have I done today to make me feel proud? Well, I ate all those cookies that I baked. Pride comes in many different forms, Biggest Loser, not all of which are low-calorie.
We begin the episode directly after Sherry's elimination. Sami tells the contestants that it's been a tough week, but it's not over yet. Because Sherry isn't the only one going home -- everyone is. Yes, it's home visit week! Everyone's excited to see their families and friends, and maybe to eat just one or two jalapeÃ±o poppers. Sami reminds them that they're still going to have to face the scale in seven days, so trips to the Olive Garden must be taken at their own risk.
The contestants pack, and Sunshine laments the loss of her campus Tempur-Pedic bed. Families and friends await the return of their formerly hefty heroes. Koli and Sam totally wear their shades inside, because they're famous now. I think their welcome home takes place in a school cafeteria, which makes it all the better. Everyone is greeted with much fanfare. I am in love with Lance's tobacco chewing, antique cowboy hat-wearing probable father. Sunshine and O'Neal seem to be the only ones without a huge party, probably because O'Neal is a party unto himself.
There are hugs and tears galore. Stephanie tells her peeps that she's lost 56 pounds. Her dad gives her a huge hug, while her mom -- who, was she on the show? -- says that Stephanie is stunning and glowing. Lance's mom thinks he looks awesome, and his kids are awfully happy to see him. Oh, and there's effing Melissa. She says that Lance looks amazing, and actually manages to give him credit for his own weight loss. I'm sorry to say that she still comes off like a psychopath. Koli and Sam announce that they've lost 104 and 96 pounds, respectively. Sam's mom is very proud of her son. O'Neal's wife (and Sunshine's mom) says that the two of them look like different people. She totally wants to bone O'Neal on the kitchen floor. Sherry is happy to see Ashley get confirmation for all of her blood, sweat and tears on the ranch. She announces that she's 12 pounds away from losing 100 pounds, and gets a big cheer. Andrea tells her party that she's lost 60 pounds. Darrell is very proud of his healthy, strong, changed daughter.
Michael heads back to Chicago, and is grateful that he'll get to spend more time with his grandma and her awesome hair. As you might recall, his grandma is quite ill. His homecoming, understandably, is pretty subdued. Maria is very glad to have her son back. Mike's grandma apparently hasn't opened her eyes in a while, and the doctors want to talk to the family today. You know that somehow Dr. Huizenga is going to work his way in there and give comatose grandma a lecture about her real age. Daris, meanwhile, thanks his legions of fans for all of their letters, pictures, and support. A lot of people love that guy, and for good reason.
With happy homecoming times over, Sunshine and O'Neal's family have a surprise for them in the living room. Oh, and everyone else has a surprise package as well. This can't be good. The box is huge, and wooden, and has the Biggest Loser logo on it. Have they finally made Bob and Jillian robots? Finally, a good use for modern technology! The contestants pry open their boxes and find a metric ton of Styrofoam peanuts surrounding an exercise bike. O'Neal is not a fan of exercise bikes, in part because his poor performance on one got him sent home on the first episode.
The smarter contestants quickly realize that this is probably not simply a gift, but also a challenge. They unwrap a smaller box, which is filled with cupcakes. Little cupcakes, of all colors, shapes, and sizes. Everyone acts like it's the most disgusting thing they've ever seen, except for Stephanie who has a sweet tooth and is thus my people. The package also contains a DVD. It's Sami, who reminds them that on the first day of the competition teams had to bike 26.2 miles -- marathon distance. This week, the remaining contestants will have to bike that distance solo. Everyone's all, "Whatchu talkin' 'bout, Sami?" Furthermore, they have to bike in front of the same crowd of family and friends who witnessed their public weigh-in before they came to campus. The prize for this challenge is $2,500. No, wait, it's $5,000. NO! Wait! It's $10,000. The contestants all want some cash to buy new wardrobes for their skinny selves.
But wait! Remember the cupcakes? They're part of a temptation challenge. Each cupcake contains 100 calories, and for each cupcake that a contestant eats, he or she can add five minutes to another player's time. Evil. O'Neal is not medically cleared to participate in the challenge or the temptation. I think he's secretly pretty psyched about that.
Lance says he doesn't want to eat any cupcakes, but at the same time he would like some cash. Melissa harps that he has to add minutes to Sam's time. I don't think I fully appreciated how much I haven't missed her. Ashley says that $10,000 pales in comparison to $250,000. She's looking at the bigger picture, and wants nothing to do with those stale-ass cupcakes. Melissa, meanwhile, is still in Lance's face. Koli and Sam announce that they haven't played games on campus so far, and don't plan to now. They toss the cupcakes on the floor. Integrity! Meanwhile, Lance eats some damn cupcakes. So does Michael, who dedicates them to the enemy Black Team. Drea also eats a cupcake and dedicates the minutes to Sam. Cut back to Lance, who is being coached on cupcake eating strategy by Melissa. She's sitting at his feet, I think so she can get in the camera shot. She tells him to eat a cupcake and give the time to Daris. Daris, meanwhile, is a member of the integrity bunch and isn't eating anything. Drea eats a cupcake for Sunshine. Sunshine eats nothing. She says she didn't come on the show to add minutes to someone's time. She wants to ride it out and have a fair competition. The reward she gets for that is five minutes added to her time from Lance. Stephanie sniffs a cupcake, then says, "This cupcake is for...me," and throws it back in the box. Lance and Michael eat cupcakes and dedicate the extra minutes to her. Rotten.
We get some final tallies. Lance has eaten freaking 17 cupcakes! That's 1700 calories. Melissa seems pleased, because she's rotten, too. Mike ate six cupcakes, which is 600 calories. It was kind of mean of him, but at only one-third of Lance's consumption, he seems positively Puritan. Drea has a stomach ache after eating nine cupcakes, or 900 calories. These people just wanted to eat some damn cupcakes, is the truth of the matter. In case you forgot, Sam, Koli, Ashley, Daris Stephanie and Sunshine are all full of integrity, which tastes even sweeter than cream cheese frosting. Until you realize that you have a 45-minute disadvantage on the bike.
After a commercial break, Mike talks to Maria about his grandma. He wonders how he can be happy and proud with this going on. He's aggravated that he has to think about working out and spend time in the gym away from his grandmother. Maria tells him to concentrate on his health, which is why they went on the show in the first place. She says that everything that grandma is going through is a result of her extreme obesity and corresponding sicknesses. She tells Michael that they don't want to be in a wheelchair, on dialysis, or have diabetes. They can choose better in their lives. That's a good motivational speech, and Michael chooses not to give up on himself.
In Ann Arbor, Drea works out with Darrell. She says that she's discovering how much she normally counts on Jillian. In Oklahoma, Daris runs on the treadmill at the gym. He formerly felt unwelcome at the gym, but now thinks he belongs. Koli and Sam head to a California 24-Hour Fitness, and say there are more distractions at home -- e.g., pretty girls. Elsewhere in California, Stephanie works out with her mom. It's a new, awesome mother/daughter bonding activity that is better than soup, salad and breadsticks at the Olive Garden followed by a matinee. Wh