We begin in the past, with a caption that says "17 weeks ago." And what happened 17 weeks ago, you may ask? Tara weighed 294 pounds. She cried. Helen weighed 257 pounds. She sweated. Mike weighed 388 pounds and wasn't nearly as cute as he is now. Ron weighed 430 pounds and had sizeable man-boobs. All of the contestants worked out like fiends under the guidance and beatings of their trainers. We watch the contestants shrink week by week to the quasi-skinnies (and Ron) they are now. And with that, Sami congratulates Tara, Helen, Mike and Ron on making the final four and gives them the news that they'll all be going home for 30 days, then coming back to campus to face the scale one more time. This will be pre-finale, i.e. at the end of this episode. All of the contestants realize that being home will present some challenges, but are committed to maintaining their focus and really learning how to do it when they're on their own. Tara cackles that she can't believe she's in the final four, and busts out the expletives to prove that she is serious.
We ride with Mike as he heads home, saying that home is the same, but he's changed. Ron is also heading home, but in a different car. That doesn't seem very green, does it, Brita-pushers? Ron feels guilty about his role in his sons' weight problems, and tells us that now he's going to have a whole different life. Tara looks gorgeous, but tells us that she's a nervous wreck. Seventeen weeks ago, she was truly unhappy, and now she has to go home and reconnect as a new person. Helen is psyched to be going home looking like a stone fox. She says that for the first time in a long time, her family will be able to wrap their arms around her. Everyone has changed drastically. Mike tells us that he has his entire life ahead of him, and nothing is going to stop him.
Each of the final four has serious parties waiting for them. Their families and friends hoot and holler and cheer and give hugs. The Losers give speeches and tell everyone how much they've lost. They also talk about how they have to go back to campus for one final weigh-in in 30 days to determine the final three, and ask for everyone's support in staying away from the whoopie pies.
With that, it's time for video diaries! Everyone is determined, blah blah blah. We flash back to 17 weeks ago, when Mike talked about his favorite meal -- secret drive-thru dinners. It is pretty painful to hear the shame in his voice when he talks about this. Now, Mike fears that he'll fall back into old habits, because he's in his old surroundings. He shows us the fast-food restaurant where he used to work, and points out the gym 100 feet away. Now he's going to be spending all of his time at the gym, but is still worried about the temptation of the golden arches.