Wednesday, February 8, 2012

BIGGEST LOSER: Conda Strikes Again

Conda Britt may go down as the worst villain in the history of the NBC reality series, "The Biggest Loser." Her antics so far this season has topped even those of "Icky" Vicky Vilcan and Heba Saloma of Season 6.

What's surprising, though, is that instead of discouraging her bullying, her teammates are being sucked in, and it's leading them on a downward spiral. As much as I like trainer Dolvett Quince, his Red team (except "Santa Claus" Roy) deserves to be sent home, which will surely keep happening if they don't shake off the Conda Curse. (For an update on that prediction see

Every week, Conda relentlessly picks on someone.  First it was Mike, who she bad-mouthed to get him eliminated. He seemed somewhat of a loner, and his tobacco-chewing habit didn't endear him to the team, but she went after him like a dog with a bone. The next week, she accused Cassandra of cheating. Next, she disrepected trainer Dolvett. Last week the target was her new team member, Adrian. He and his sister Daphne were on the Aqua team that didn't make it on to the ranch. But, if they lost at least 50 pounds by week four, they could come back — and they nailed it.  Instead of a welcoming the new team mates as in past seasons (remember Sunshine and O'Neal Hampton?), the players gave Adrian and Daphne a cold shoulder.

Yes, Adrian's brashness could rub people the wrong way. But had the Red Team stopped acting like a junior high clique, Adrian likely would have been less defensive and outspoken. He proved during the workouts that he could keep up with the rest of the team, but was never given credit simply because he had missed the bonding process that the others had been through.

I'm especially disappointed in Kim and Mark, who have taken on the "leadership" roles in the group.  They have joined in the bullying rather than nipping it in the bud. Their criticisms of Adrian were hypocritical. In the first-episode challenge that sent Aqua team home, Pink (Kim's team) and Green (Conda's team) were at the very bottom too, and could have easily been the ones sent home. When Adrian returned, he had lost 34 pounds to Conda's 27 and Kim's 32 -- and Adrian had done it at home on his own; while Kim and Conda had four weeks with a gym, trainer and supervised diet. 
Kim carped about Adrian's remark that he had worked out 14 hours a day, but she (and one of the other red team) was unable to work out on the monkey bars the way Adrian could. 
Mark confronted Adrian about not losing more during the weigh-in, saying he was a "big guy" and should have put up more than two pounds.  Um, what about Mark's own son, Chism, who is also a "big guy" and only put up two pounds at the same weigh-in?  What about Conda, who also only lost 2 pounds?  
During the challenge to try to keep Dolvett from being dumped into the swimming pool, Mark was one of the first to let go of his rope, while Adrian and Roy (the oldest guy in the group!) hung on the longest. 
When Dolvett brought out the long list of all Conda's backbiting remarks that he had overheard, why didn't the Red Team wise up? Why didn't the "leaders," Mark and Kim, tell her she was hurting the team? It seems that they, too, are afraid of her wrath.  

Last week the Red team blew the perfect opportunity to get rid of the back-biting and bad feelings by sending Conda home. Would have made sense, since she only lost two pounds.  But instead,  they voted off Nancy, who dared called out Conda and Kim about their constant griping.  

Last night Conda miraculously lost the most weight and had immunity. It was obvious that Conda's Crew was looking for any excuse to send Adrian home— a really stupid move.  Adrian is a tough, strong guy who could have helped win challenges and put up big numbers. Had he been welcomed and treated as part of the team, he could have been an asset. Roy showed some integrity by not voting to send Adrian home; and he'll probably pay for that by being voted off next week. Buddy's been my Red Team favorite so far, but his lecture about Adrian making "excuses" seemed to be a big excuse itself. 

Of course, viewers aren't seeing everything that went on 24/7, and perhaps there's more to the story than what we're seeing. Maybe Conda is really just a nice, sweet girl when she's not spewing venom. Maybe Kim and Mark had more justification for the way they treated Adrian.  I wonder what they are thinking when they watch these episode and see their actions.  They may claim they were edited to look bad.  In past seasons, Vicky Vilcan and Heather Hansen (of Bountiful, Utah) said they didn't even realize that they were being portrayed as "villains" until they started watching the episodes as they aired.

It's true that things can be edited out; but you can't edit words that someone actually said. 

I've heard from some viewers who say they don't like the nastiness and will quit watching. I hope the producers take note of this.  Yes, conflict and controversy often raise viewership, but "The Biggest Loser" doesn't really need a "villain." There's a ready-made villain — weight — that all the players are fighting against. That's what makes the show so watchable, not the ugliness that's erupted this season.


Jill said...

You are so right on! I have never commented a any TV show before.. but wow! I usually LOVE this show. always feel good when I watch it! It is not like other reality shows that seem to be staged. This show genuinely inspires me and everyone else to do better. So to have this TRASH on the show that is so negative and just CANNOT accomplish anything because CONDA has sucked everyone into her game. Rather than letting the show change her for the better, she has accomplished the unthinkable... She has made the show like HER! it is a shame and the show should really think about the direction they are going in. I dont think anything good can come of this crap!

Ellen said...

I agree! After watching this episode last night, I felt yucky inside, like I don't want to watch it anymore. I like the competition, but not the bad feelings. If this keeps up, I'll find other things to do on Tuesday nights.

Mickey said...

Totally agree but Mark's son is Chism. Jeremy is Conda's brother.

Valerie Phillips said...

Mickey,thanks for the correction on Chism/Jeremy!

Heatherann said...

You nailed it! Great points! I just watched the lasted episode (TiVo) and it infuriated me. I really felt Adrian got the shaft. Conda is just horrible. Most TV "villains" have some form of humor or likeability. Conda is just mean and nasty. At least her name is fitting, she does resemble a snake.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting this. I have watched biggest losser and this year is just horrible. What are we teaching children? Conda is just mean and nasty. Kim is right behind her.They should do something about her.

Anonymous said...

Things must of been pretty bad for the producers to choose to air such ugliness this season. Would like to see more ideas on food and exercise at home - more working together as a team - more positive talk from the trainers - LESS arguments and negativity from the players.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this blog, it's refreshing to see most people watching this are sane and smart enough to recognize the foolishness. I had to pray before watching these last few weeks so as not to be completely pi@$ed off at the unfair treatment of the Aqua team.

Anonymous said...

So glad to know that others are feeling the same way about the direction this season has taken and how incredibly immature and spiteful Conda is. I've been unable to understand Conda's appeal to other team members and their loyalty to her. Adrian and Daphne were not even given a chance by the other team members. It's understandable that peoples' "stuff" is triggered in relationships once they stop using food to stuff their feelings, but there should have been more intervention by the trainers or other professionals to help the players deal with the dynamics and problem-solve. The episode tonight was a set-up by the producers that just added fuel to the fire - after a promise of anonymity, it was clear that Daphne's action would be evident to the group. Biggest Loser has been one of my favorite programs over the years. Like others,though, I've been feeling "yucky" after the last few episodes and if they encourage this kind of drama each season, I'll stop watching.

Anonymous said...

I cannot even believe how blind Conda's teammates are is to how toxic she is to the them... She says she is a rolemoedel to her daughter! That is so untrue and if i was her mother i would be so ashamed to admit it to anyone!

Anonymous said...

Conda is a perfect example as to why there is so much bullying in the world---others don't want to be the next victim, so they jump on the bully's side. Conda's teammates don't actually like her, they just want to make sure they are not the target of her next vicious attack. So disappointing that TBL allows this garbage to be aired. Conda needs to be called out for the bully that she is.