The episode opens with a touching moment between Aneesa and Cory. He thanks her for having his back in the previous episode and she says of course! Like it is the most natural thing to do in this game, to be loyal to a friend. Imagine that. In a less loyal corner of the house CT accuses Kyle of trying to get Big T hurt on purpose to avoid being sent into the crater to avoid having to try to save his gold skull that week. Kyle in turn tries to convince Big T that Aneesa, his partner, is her best shot to try to win a gold skull. It seems he thinks Aneesa, who has more than proven herself time and time again, will not be able to complete a final, so he is trying to get rid of her to switch partners.
CT takes to training Big T for various competitions she might have to face in the crater and she shares with us that she will be donating a portion of her winnings to hospital beds and blankets in Malawi should she win. Just when you thought you couldn’t love Big T more, she goes ahead and proves us all wrong. Fessy, on the other hand, starts talking smack about CT, claiming he is overrated. Pause for people all over the world, and basically all of New England to rise up, fists clenched. Fessy is actually trying to argue that CT, Challenge legend, is a garbage player. Nany overhears him and further regrets switching to be Fessy’s partner, as she has basically since he kicked her in the face in their first challenge as a pair, then blamed her for their loss.
The competitors head over to the daily challenge trudging through what looks to be a large green field. TJ tells us this challenge will be an assault from the sky and everyone but Cory looks upset. Operation Spy Dive is a challenge that includes decoding a puzzle that is only visible from 15,000 feet in the air. The challengers will jump out of an airplane, then have to memorize the puzzle key set up on the ground beneath them as they float down to the ground with the help of a trained professional attached to their back, as well as a parachute of course. When they land, they have to then detach from the parachute and run to complete their own version of the puzzle along with their partner. Whoever does this the quickest will become this week’s Double Agents.
Leroy & Kaycee are selected to go in the first round with Aneesa & Kyle, then Big T & CT, Nany & Fessy, Cory & Kam with Amber B watching from the side lines as this week’s rouge agent. Leroy’s trained professional throws them out of the airplane while Leroy keeps his eyes closed tight, Kam cheering him on from the ground. Kaycee, on the other hand, basically flips on her way out of the airplane she’s so excited about this challenge. In another musical stroke of genius Kenny Loggins’ Danger Zone which you may recognize from a little film called Top Gun plays as the challengers free fall through the air. Aneesa and Kyle fly through the air and realize almost too late that they are going to have to memorize the puzzle key beneath them as they fall. TJ addresses the challengers once they are safely on the ground and instructs them to now run ½ mile to their puzzle stations where they will have to use the key they should have memorized in the air to solve. They will not be permitted to start solving the puzzle until both partners arrive at their puzzle station. Leroy and Kaycee bolt off into the distance while Aneesa gets tired almost immediately and starts walking. Kyle is encouraging her but she does not even make it to their puzzle before Leroy and Kaycee finish theirs.
Cory lets us in on what he feels will be his secret to success, a photographic memory. Kam appears willing to believe this, if it gets her that much closer to the $1 million prize. Big T and CT seem excited to have the band back together and Nany continues to regret picking Fessy. Big T is absolutely terrified and yet has to sit next to the open door as the airplane speeds its way up to 15,000 feet. She makes the jump anyway, tears running down her face and wouldn’t you know it she enjoys it! CT does share that no matter how many times he jumps out of a plane, it is pretty scary on the way up. Fessy turns out to be ridiculously scared and actually screams like a Halloween ghoul on the way down. Kam and Cory each jump out of the plane effortlessly, like they do this on the weekends for giggles. Once on the ground, Fessy once again shows what a garbage partner he is by running up ahead of his partner Nany, leaving her in the dust. Cory and CT on the other hand are keeping pace with their partners and encouraging them along the way. Kam & Cory finish their puzzle first, winning the heat. CT seems to think this is the exact moment to berate Big T about not being able to run the ½ mile to his satisfaction, but Big T continues to stand up for herself and actually says she is proud of herself for completing this challenge. As well she should. Not since the late great Diem has a female put CT in his place this often during a Challenge season and I for one am here for it.
Back at the Challenge sign, TJ announces that Kam & Cory won their heat, while Kaycee & Leroy won theirs. With a 14 second lead, Kaycee & Leroy win the challenge for their 4th win of the season. The challengers start to scramble back at the house as they realize the person they wanted to throw in this week, Amber B is a rouge agent, Kam & Cory are protected since Leroy is the double agent, it is basically going to be friend against friend in the crater this week. CT tries to apologize to Big T but she is not falling for it. He keeps showing her who he is, then tries to tell her he is someone else, it’s a tough show to watch. I am really proud of her for not allowing any of his shenanigans, it’s been a wonderful watch.
The night out at the igloo turns out to be an 80s theme night and the challengers just happen to have the most appropriate gear. Day glow and neon? Leg warmers and headbands? Yes please! Aneesa sees the writing on the wall as to whom will be voted into elimination this week, takes the opportunity to try to save herself and attempts to politic to have Nany voted into the crater instead of herself. In an alternate corner Fessy announces to CT that he is coming for the top spot. Jaws drop everywhere as Fessy, for no apparent reason, gets in CT’s face, who comes back about 10 times harder, as one would expect. Sometimes it just really feels like Fessy has never seen this show before. CT almost killed his Real World roommate Adam in an earlier season, Fessy is a stranger to him, he would lose absolutely no sleep over knocking him out, that much is clear. Aneesa calls Fessy and CT ‘fun sponges’ for sucking up all the fun in the room and the night ends. Fessy tries to spin this as he was trying to compliment CT and CT over reacted, which no one believes.
At the deliberation Big T asks to be voted in as she would like the opportunity to earn her gold skull. Aneesa predicts that Leroy will then vote her in due to his relationship with Kam and long time friendship with Nany. It is late in the game, and frankly some tough choices have to be made. Big T & CT win the house vote almost unanimously except for Kyle who voted for himself and Aneesa in an effort to switch partners. Leroy realizes he is going to have to throw Aneesa in and is not excited about the prospect but does hope for Aneesa to win. Aneesa realizes that CT is also hoping she wins because he regrets getting back with Big T and wants to switch partners.
As expected, at the crater, Big T & CT are the house vote and Leroy throws in Aneesa & Kyle. TJ announces tonight’s female elimination night is Fire Escape. The women will have to hang form metal beams, feet and hands tethered together, making their way speedily down one flaming metal beam only to turn around and make their way back. Big T actually gest the hang of this one quickly. Everyone seems to be cheering for Aneesa but she can’t seem to get it together. Big T laps Aneesa then wins, stealing Aneesa’s gold skull. Once again, Aneesa makes her way all the way up to the final, only to go home. It’s a sad moment. Aneesa is a great player, all time beast in eliminations, you really want her to get to that final. Not this year for Aneesa but she does celebrate in her exit interview that there are only women of color left and how wonderful would it be for a woman of color to win the $1 million prize. To be a part of something greater than herself was Aneesa’s greatest honor this season and she says she can leave proudly, knowing she has given this season her all.
The episode ends with Big T choosing to stay with CT rather than shake up the house because what can you say after that really? It is a garbage choice considering how he treats her. She would have been more than validated to switch to someone who does not talk about her like she is the flavor of the week. Kyle is paired with Amber B, and they frankly seem cool with it. Every single player has a gold skull but TJ announces that we are far from done. It seems there may be more eliminations to come before we see the final. Stay tuned for next week when Kyle and CT have a lovers spat and the challengers complete within human sized hamster balls.