What have I done today to make me feel proud? Why are you always questioning me this way? I can't take the pressure!
We enter with the contestants telling us that they can't believe it's week nine. Me either, suckers. They all redouble their commitment to being finalists, sometimes in terrifying close-up.
And then it's a new day, and the contestants meet Sami back on the ranch, having obviously returned from their trip to D.C. She tells them that every week on the ranch involves encountering more obstacles, and different results. Sometimes the contestants beat the scale. Sometimes the scale beats them. And this week, the scale will beat two of them. Yes, you heard it right. Two contestants will be eliminated. There are eight contestants currently and after this week's weigh-in only six contestants will remain. And get this. There will be a red line in addition to the usual yellow line. The contestant who loses the least amount of weight will drop below the red line and automatically be axed. Well, that's totally fair. The second elimination will be the usual process of voting off one of two contestants who fall below the yellow line.
And, of course, there's a pop challenge. The winner will get a one pound advantage, which could be crucial. Each contestant has a board with 50 tennis balls attached. The first person to jump up and get all 50 tennis balls in their container wins. Shay points out that she is 60-200 pounds heavier than all of the other contestants, and so is basically screwed. Amanda and Liz can't compete for medical reasons that we are not privy to, so they sit out. The other contestants begin the running and the jumping. This one looks fairly exhausting. Allen takes an early lead with Rebecca and Daniel following close behind. It's close at the finish, but Allen wins. He enjoys winning, as you do, but realizes that he's won an advantage and not a guarantee.
Rebecca and Amanda walk and strategize, and hope that Liz falls below the red line. They'd also like Allen to fall below the yellow line so they can boot him. Amanda explains that there's a bit of a separation between the youngsters and the old folks: it's Rebecca, Amanda, Daniel and Shay against Liz, Allen, Rudy, and Danny. Danny and Liz walk and agree about the age separation. The red line is critical this week, because it will make the voting four to three. Liz is the oldest person in the house, and has a knee problem, so thinks she's the easy one to pick off this week. Danny is going to stay on her butt and ensure that she stays above the red line. Who knew it would come down to a battle of the ages?
Bob and Jillian meet with the contestants and note that Tracey is gone. Jillian finds it ironic that at the moment when she was finally able to stand the sight of Tracey, she was sent home. I feel the same way! The contestants explain the red line / yellow line situation, and the trainers are shocked. Does this show tell them nothing? Apparently not, since Bob says he could have picked his chin up off the floor. Jillian asks for a minute alone with Bob. She tells him that, even though it's politically incorrect, the truth is that Shay needs to be there. Every week on campus could be a matter of life and death. There are some contestants who Jillian knows will be okay if they go home. Shay is not one of them. Bob agrees that Shay needs to be there, but he says that it doesn't change his feeling that others -- say, Amanda -- also need to be there. Jillian says that Shay can't compete with the boys because she's bigger than all of them. All the other girls are a third of her size. Jillian isn't saying that she's better or more deserving, however she doesn't have confidence that Shay will do well at home. Bob says that he'll do everything he can for every single one of the contestants. However, Jillian says that she thinks they should pull out every trick they have to give Shay a chance. That doesn't mean that the others don't deserve it, but Shay is a special case. Bob is uncomfortable with this, but the one thing he hears from what Jillian is saying is that some contestants will be able to do better in the real world. It's not just physical. As Bob says, "I got it," we head to commercials.
When we return, Bob is getting snippy with Rudy. He's stressed and on a roid rage. Rudy is totally scared. He agrees to do whatever Bob tells him. Meanwhile, there are beatings galore in the gym. Shay doesn't look like she can take it, and Jillian says, "Come on, Mami." Shay gets back on the treadmill. Danny's hip is hurting him, which doesn't bode well. What's clear, however, is that everyone is working out like crazy in fear of the red line. Liz takes a nap on the treadmill. Danny is not feeling great, but is determined to not let the others get ahead of him. His face gets all red and he screams, "Oh, fud!" He sits in a pool of his own sweat, and Jillian tells him that he's finished and overtrained. She makes him stop. There is, however, no stopping for Shay. Jillian says that she's still the biggest one in the house and that automatically the men are going to beat her. It's amazing that they've managed to get Shay this far, she says. Well, Shay had something to do with that, too. Shay explains that just at the moment that you're feeling the worst physical pain known to man Jillian digs in and rips out your heart and makes you do it anyway. Shay wants to stay, though. It's like Billy Ocean said -- when the going gets tough, the tough hit the treadmill. Get outta my dreams and get on the elliptical! Oh, jeez, but this isn't actually funny, because Jillian is screaming at Shay to get into plank position and stop crying. Shay holds the position for the mandated ten seconds, and Jillian makes Shay look her in the eye. She tells Shay that she's going to be strong this week, and that not one more tear will come out of her eyeball. Okay, I'm just watching this on television and I'm totally terrified of crying for the rest of the week. Jillian tells Shay that she will do everything she's told and will do it perfectly. Shay nods in tearless agreement. Jillian interviews that she'll make sure that Shay doesn't go below the red line, so at least she'll have a fighting chance.
Meanwhile, the oldsters confer and try to engage in some strategery. Allen says that he's tried to avoid the game thus far, but he may be pushed to the position where he needs to engage in gameplay. Liz feels like she's competing against all of the youngsters, and says in no uncertain terms that she's not going home without a fight. We cut back to the gym, where Jillian tells us that this isn't a normal week, so workouts aren't just a few hours -- they're all day long. Jillian also tells us that Rebecca is all or nothing. If she can't win and she isn't sure of it, she quits. If she's not confident, she's out. Rebecca tells Jillian that she can't do any more, but Jillian doesn't buy it. Rebecca is stressed, physically and mentally exhausted, and drained emotionally. But with Jillian, it doesn't matter if you actually can't do it. Jillian tells Rebecca that life happens right now, and transformation happens right now. The present moment is all she really has. And in the present moment, Rebecca is exhausted and walks away. Jillian manages to save the murder for the future.
Amanda asks a tearful Rebecca why she's so frustrated. Rebecca says that sometimes she wants to quit, because that's her pattern. Every day she has a fight with herself to get out of bed, and to workout. Amanda asks why she's so scared, and Rebecca says that she's blamed others for so long, when really she's the one who's stood in her own way. How can the editors take the tears and the sad stories? Amanda vows to stand by Rebecca, and Rebecca tells us that this is the week that she really needs to figure it out. It would be the worst thing for her to go home this week.
Meanwhile, Danny tells Bob that Jillian told him he's done for the day. Bob says that, in fact, Danny is not done. Bob tells us that Jillian's a great trainer, but she can't bench Danny at such