Has Biggest Loser finally Jumped the Shark?

I quit watching Biggest Loser a couple seasons ago. I couldn’t stand the game play any longer. I still read the brief episode recaps on msnbc.

It seems like the show has reached the point that the contestants know it too well. They’ve got the game play down to a science. This season there’s been multiple weeks when contestants gained weight as a strategy. A few weeks back, three people gained weight in one weigh-in.

They are calling it gain-a-palooza.

It doesn’t seem like the original idea of losing weight and getting healthy works on this show. I quit watching after they started including more and more super morbidly obese contestants. People that weigh 375lbs and up. I think they even had a 500lb contestant. That’s not a frigging game anymore. That’s life and death. Back in the early seasons the men were around 300 lbs and the women a mere 225lbs. That’s getting seriously unhealthy too, but it’s not life threatening.

I watched the first six seasons. Game play was always there. You always had idiots water load one week and then show a good number the next week. But, from what I’ve read, it seems like the game play has totally taken over.

Has the show lost it’s way? Has it jumped the fat guy, uh shark? :smiley:

My wife roped me into watching this show with her 4 or 5 seasons ago. Initially. Now I watch it because I want to. I like to see people’s lives transformed, to see them fight. Oh, sure, the show is all kinds of edited to achieve the most dramatic effect, but still. It’s the only reality show I watch, and that’s because I started rooting for the “contestants” to reclaim themselves.

For the first time, tonight’s show made me want to stop watching. A particular contestant, who lost over 100 pounds before even being allowed on the show, was said by Bob to be the sickest person ever on the show. Out of all the people who’ve ever been on the show, he may have needed the help the very most.

And circumstances, along with a whole team of f%cking game-players, sent him home. And this after he lost the second-highest amount of weight this week.

He’s a fighter, no doubt, so he’ll keep on keepin’ on. You’re showin’ 'em all, Arthur.

I’ve rolled my eyes at the show. I’ve even cried, just like the show manipulated me to do. But this is the first time I’ve ever been *angry *with what’s happened on the show.

(shakes head) If you ask me right now, I’m done with the show. But I’ll likely keep watching, to keep pulling for the others who’re fighting and struggling.

I was really happy with this show for a while because I felt it was the only legitimately worthwhile reality show- it was helping people improve their lives, literally in a life-or-death way. But over the past several seasons I just grew increasingly frustrated with the production of it- 2 hour episodes that could easily have been one, but were filled with so much weeping and time wasting that it started to resemble an episode of Oprah. Plus, yes, the game playing.

I’m sick of it. I’m glad people are still competing and improving their lives and health, but I can’t watch it anymore.

I’ve been watching the show for about four seasons now, and I really like the idea of it. These are people who really need help, and their lives are literally changed for the better even if they don’t come close to the prize money. It’s also inspired me to get serious about exercising.

Not all the contestants game-play, but I do get pissed at the ones who do. The parents who purposely threw the weigh-in last week should be ashamed of themselves.

Now about Arthur. One the one hand, I have enormous sympathy for him. Just two years ago he was 645 lbs and quickly on his way to being buried in a piano crate. He’s taken the opportunities that BL has given him and lost, something like 250 pounds since then. That’s fabulous and I’m rooting for him to keep it up.

But, here’s the thing. What screwed Arthur last night was nobody but Arthur. He’s really a big man-child, and the dick move he made on the Valentine’s episode (switching two couples on the teams when he didn’t have to) set him up for what happened last night. If he hadn’t had done it, everyone last night would have just stayed with the trainers they were used to and he would have been perfectly safe. So I felt bad he was leaving, because he really needs to get healthy; and I understand Bob and Jill’s outrage; but the man did it to himself.

Plus, based on the epilogue, it looks like he’s doing really well at home. I can’t wait to see him at the finale.

But Dear God, yes, this show needs to be trimmed to an hour a week. Two hours is excrutiating. We FF through a lot of it.

I’ve always thought that the basic flaw of the show is that when you get voted out, you have to go home. That, and the “temptation” challenges and whatnot. The show claims to be about transforming lives, but it does these things that go against that.

You could still have the competition part of the show, but just have the people stay on the ranch once they are eliminated. Keep them separated from the other players or whatever if you need to maintain the drama, but let them continue to work out and receive training & advice.

I would agree with you except it appears that the show makes arrangements for ousted players to continue to receive treatment at home – they all seem to get gym memberships, etc. Most of them end up doing pretty well at home, and the truth is that they have to go home and face all those temptations at some point anyway. No one gets to stay on the ranch forever.

True enough, but it’s the show itself and the contestants that promote the idea that having to leave the ranch is a disaster. Lots of the gameplay stuff is about “saving” people by keeping them on the ranch - not to win the prize, but to continue to get healthy.

Oh, I do agree there is a disconnect there. It’s obviously more advantageous to stay at the ranch as long as possible; and if the show were truly magnanimous it would allow the eliminated players to stay and work out in isolation (or at their nearby facility, perhaps). They probably figure that lowering the stakes like that would eliminate a lot of the drama of the show, and we shouldn’t be under the illusion that the show’s goals of making these people healthy is secondary to its goal of getting ratings and making money. In fact I wonder if that has played a part in Jillian’s decision to leave after this season.

Some people do lose a lot weight at home after leaving the ranch. Others show up at the last weigh-in bigger than when they left the ranch. Ultimately, each person has to make their own choices in life.

The transformations are what kept me watching season after season. The game play seemed to get worse as the years went by. A few people seemed like they were only on the show for the money and attention. It wore me down and I had to stop watching.

The news reports I’ve been reading this season have been pretty disappointing. I can’t recall this many weight gains at weigh-ins before. It’s all calculated, gamesmanship. It bothers me knowing how desperately ill some of these people are. I’m not sure a reality show is the best way to help someone that weighs over 400lbs. But, there’s always a few that transform their lives in spite of the shows games.

Jumped the shark? Well, nothing really hokey has taken the show to new lows. It’s just becoming more contrived and pathetic.

To be fair, most of the weight gains this season have happened in three episodes:

– There was a pair of twins who wanted to go home. So one week they each purposely gained weight, and one was sent home. The following week the other twin and his new partner purposely gained weight so he could leave and be with this brother. (I think these two are the most likely to put weight back on).

– Last week, three parents on one team gained weight on purpose to make sure none of the younger kids on their team got sent home. This was stupid – if everyone had lost weight none of them would have been in danger.

I’ve never seen anyone weigh in at the finale heavier than when the left the ranch, and this is the fourth season I’ve been watching. So it can’t be that common. But ultimately when people leave the ranch they’re never any worse than if they had not been on the show, and usually significantly better.

I always wished they showed more of the day-to-day stuff. A calendar of what they’re doing:

6:30-breakfast, 3 egg whites, tomato, banana
7-7:45 treadmill, incline 5 speed 8
7:45-9:00 weights
9:15-10:30 class

etc, etc.

I could also do without the heavy handed and really embarrassing product placements.

“Hey, whatcha cooking?” Bob says to contestant.
“Not much, just some Jennie-O 99% lean turkey breasts stuffed with Extra Gum. The taste goes on for a long time!”

The shark was not jumped. It was eaten.

“Great! Let’s go to Subway and talk about it. Their six inch subs offer all kinds of healthy eating options.”
“Sounds good, let me just put these leftovers in this convenient Zip-loc bag.”

Over and over I’ve pitched my own idea for a weight-loss show (to my wife…with expectedly unimpressive results):

It’s called “The Losing Team.” It has two teams of fat people facing off. They work as a team to lose weight and earn money for their “pot.” They also earn points by losing weight, winning challenges, etc. Then the team that earns the most points at the end of the season wins the pot they’ve earned, and they split it amongst the teammates based on percentage of weight lost. You lose the biggest percentage of weight, you get the biggest percentage of the pot.

No one ever goes home. They work together as a team all season to earn money and points, but still as individuals in hopes of taking home a bigger share of the pot at the end.

I stopped watching the show – there used to be a very significant prize for the booted contestant who lost the most on their own. Is that no longer the case?

Yes, the eliminated contestant who loses the greatest % of weight at the end of the season wins $100,000. The ultimate winner who survives the whole season on the ranch while losing the most wins $250,000.

Arthur shot himself in the foot. HE was the one who tried to “play” the game and it backfired on him. He alone made the decision to upset the apple cart. And ALL of the contestants are at unhealthy weights and need to be at the facility. When Bob and Jillian got all upset about him being voted off, I thought “gee, don’t they care about the health of their other clients or is this the “Arthur” show now and everyone else can go home?”

But I stopped watching Survivor last season and started watching Biggest Loser instead. I much prefer the positive feelings I get from Biggest Loser over the constant desire to see idiots being idiots for drama’s sake on other reality shows get voted off. I found myself watching Survivor thinking “I hope such and such gets voted off this week” and rooting for no one. With Biggest Loser, I enjoy seeing them because they all realize that they need to be there and I have yet to see anyone who got voted off seem bitter or snarky.

To me, Arthur’s weight loss this week at home just proves he is capable of losing weight at home and therefore keeping him at the ranch out of pity is totally illogical. If you did that once, you’d pretty much have to keep saving Arthur week after week because he will still be morbidly obese next week.

First of all, does it need to be 2 hours?
Second of all, get rid Alison Sweeney. It is unwatchable with her overly dramatic yet strangely 2-dimensional soap opera delivery.
Third of all, “I need to be here.” Yeah, you all do so give me another reason why you should stay?