I know that this is only the ninth episode, but don't the earlier episodes seem oddly far away? For example, remember Shadrick? Every time I see him in the opening credits, I'm all "Jigga-who?"
Previously on Tough Enough: a drawing was held to determine which contestants would get to have a visitor. Josh and Greg won, but due to a scheduling conflict, Greg's girlfriend couldn't come, so he sold his pick to Harvard Chris. Greg re-aggravated a back injury.
House of Pain. The contestants learn to bounce off the ropes in the ring. Next, they all line up in the middle of the ring to show off their "rope rash." Ouch. It looks very painful. It also might interest you to know that while Harvard Chris and Maven shave their armpits, Josh and Chris-tian do not. Or it might not interest you to know that. I'm just trying to give you a visual. I'm not surprised about Maven, but I was kind of surprised about Harvard Chris. Oh, and both of the women do.
The Sad Piano Music of Oh My Aching Back plays as Greg goes to the doctor's office. We get a quick beefcake shot of Greg in his underwear while the doctor examines him. It wasn't that exciting to see, because Greg is obviously in a great deal of pain. Unless pain excites you. Not that there's anything wrong with that. The doctor busts out an x-ray and starts explaining the injury. Al Snow voice-overs that they all feel like Greg will be able to tough it out. The doctor says that Greg will probably be able to continue, but it really depends on the results of an upcoming MRI. Greg repeats the sentiment he expressed last week about feeling like he's a part of the WWF family. Hey, am I allowed to say "WWF" anymore since they lost the lawsuit to the World Wildlife Foundation? Well, I'm going to keep with it. Y'all know what I mean when I use it. In an interview, Nidia explains that Greg has a lot of willpower, and that the other contestants are being very supportive.
Montage of Hey, These Guys Are Starting to Look Like Professional Wrestlers.
At the gym, Al Snow voice-overs that he tried to think of something to help distract the contestants from their constant physical pain. Al Snow came up with the "circle game." For those of you without older brothers, it goes a little something like this. You make a circle with your thumb and forefinger, kind of like the "O" in the sign for okay. You hold that circle somewhere below your waist and try to trick your opponent into looking at it. Why below the waist? I have no idea. I guess because it's more rare that someone would look at you below the waist. If you could hold it up by your head, and then you said something, your opponent would turn to look at you, and would lose. If your opponent looks at it, you get to punch him or her in the arm. There are many variations. For example, we always played that if the recipient of the punch flinches, he or she gets two punches for flinching. In an interview, Al Snow says that many of the WWF wrestlers and production crew play the game, including Shane and Stephanie McMahon. That is both sweet and sad, all at the same time.