|Tough Enough 3--01/16/03
Hey all...Welcome to this week's show. First of all, there was a nice little promo before the show (during, 'The Osbournes') worth noting, featuring our cult hero--standing behind a podium, asking us for our help in deciding who the winner of T.E.3 is to be--and inviting us all to tune in to this week's show to find out how..
They recap last week's in-ring massacre of Matt, and the Rib of the Week...
They begin the show with the contestants arriving at Trax W (three days left), with the trainers saying a little about each of the contestants that remain. 'Big' reminds us that there are many things that they are looking for--in-ring technique, personality, and that ever-elusive 'it' factor. Eric is described (by Al) as 'a machine', 'very intense', and 'very focused'. John 'could be a tremendous star', he has 'got the athletic ability'--and can do a standing shooting star press ('No one has ever been able to pull that off') that quite frankly blew my mind. Jonah has 'got talent' and 'really wants to do this'. Jamie 'hangs with guys' in the ring, so that definitely gives her 'a leg up' for a future in the WWE. Matt 'is a natural in the ring', and has 'a ton of timing ability, he truly feels it'. The contestants are featured in their own flashy mini-montages, and one can see that it is going to be a pretty darn difficult choice. 'Big' reminds us of how hard it is going to be, and how hard it is going to be to lose three of these young hopefuls after spending so much time with them; but says that that is what Tough Enough is all about..only two can win.
The then go on to reminisce over past ribs..each is reviewed..and how they plan to get in the last rib on Al. Matt tells us that the plan is to somehow remove the wheels from Al's Expedition. Okay. He sneaks out and manages to do this over lunch, while the others keep watch. He is shown doing this..but they do not show where he hides the wheels, haha..They all come out later to do their running, and a totally unsusp ecting Al comes out..back turned away at first..and while in mid-hug sees what they hath wrought. The expression on his face is absolutely priceless when he realizes that he has been had. The others cheer, Al gawks, and Bill gives them props. Jonah says that they can all walk out of Tough Enough after getting the last laugh on Al Snow...Al admits that he is speechless..But is it over?
Next morning (2 days left, they remind us) they are off again to Trax W, and as Matt tells us--they did not expect any special guests; they were expecting to train. Their faces as they arrive tell another story, however..and they tease us a bit (Matt says that the guest symbolizes everything the company stands for, Jonah is taken aback, etc., etc..) before going to a commercial break.
When they return (after an invite from 'Big' to log on to ToughEnough.com, or MTV.com to cast YOUR vote for the winner!), the guest is revealed to be....WHOOOOOO! It's The Nature Boy, Ric Flair! Standing in the ring, larger than life, a-stylin' and profilin' (albeit in a subdued fashion). Al introduces him as being one of the ones that inspired him to get into the business. Ric is given the appropriate flashy montage. He then speaks to the contestants about how he started in the business thirty years ago, and how he thinks the business has changed between then and now. He also talks about how the 'people on the outside' do not really realize how hard the business is--how physically and mentally demanding it is. He stresses skill, determination and dedication, individuality, and, 'never wanting to be anything less than the best'. Showing some class, he wraps up by saying that he is honored to have met them, and, wishing them all luck--shakes their hands as he leaves (alas, all too quickly).
Well, well! There is another special guest this week. It is Referee Mike Chioda, who Al introduces as his friend. He is to referee matches between the kids. Al pops on and tells us at home that the contestants are 'literally being ev aluated every minute of every day', and that they are 'only as good as their last time in the ring'--stressing how much pressure that is for them. They mix it up awhile, looking good; and each contestant tells us their personal opinion of who they think will win..and why. Jamie is shown taking a pretty good backbreaker just as Taz's music hits..and his montage. Uh-oh. Seems they are all sitting there, minding their own business, watching the matches' progress..and Taz sneaks in from behind. Jonah is sitting there, and, he 'can feel someone hovering over ' him. He turns--and sees Taz--and gets out of his seat. Taz just presses him back into it. Eric likens him to Bob 'The Bully' Holly, and expects to get his *ss beat. He may be right.
Taz sits them all in a row, and tells them that Bill will not be there the following day--and that he will be instead. He also tells them that he knows that they go 'To The Canyon' on Tuesdays..and assures them that he will be there. Along with five of his friends. He says that it will be a little bit different this Tuesday At The Canyon. Everyone looks scared to death, with good reason. Jamie's eyes are a-buggin' royally..Eric just looks numb. Taz tells them that he will be there at six am..so, they are to go home and prepare..and not to go out. Eric figures that Taz will 'show up in fatigues' and that everyone 'has this knot in their stomach'. Taz looks really pleased with himself at the prospect. As a sort of bribe, maybe, Taz is invited to their house that night for dinner. He feigns disinterest as he agrees, haha..
At the house, they grill up some burgers for their guests, then Jonah challenges Taz to a video game (PS2's Smackdown?)--and Bad*ss Taz is like a little kid--the delight is apparent on his face as he chooses himself from the roster on the game. His eyes light up in wonder, calling it, 'the real thing', then he laughs as his character struts by, walking 'like (He) got a rod up his *ss'. He loses. To Ivory. After dinner they are all sea ted at the kitchen table, and the kids are chided for 'not dressing up for Taz'..They scramble upstairs to change, then present themselves for approval. Taz says that, 'They clean up nice', and then says that they would probably look good sitting in the front row at Smackdown!. The kids all freak out..especially Jamie. The one problem remaining is the Canyon the next morning. Off to a commercial..and another promo with 'Big', plugging next week's live season finale.
Back from the break, the gang is further surprised (Doesn't this count as a rib? Huh?) to find out that the dreaded Canyon has been waived..and Jamie lets out another scream that sounds amazingly like the long screech at the beginning of, 'Welcome to the Jungle' by GNR..scary...They all hug Taz and are off to the Smackdown! taping.
The arrive, and with a handshake, Al invites them to 'Go see my world'. They are in awe of the grand scope of it all, as Superstar after Superstar pass by them. Al takes them back behind the scenes on the way to the stage itself. There is a table where JR and Vince himself watch the monitors..watching every move. Al says that he is never nervous until he gets to this point. They then take The Dreamwalk. Out onto the stage and down the ramp. It is really hitting these kids, and we hear their reactions. Some of the Superstars seen are Brock Lesnar, Rakishi, Chavo, Chief Morley, Pat Patterson, Arn Anderson, Dean Malenko, and Molly Holly. Matt speaks for them all by saying that this is where he wants to be.
The seats are down in front, and the show is on. The montage is a good one..and Al seems to be wrestling---Who is that? Maven? Kinda looks like him--that night. Ivory also wrestles, and gives them a nod from the turnbuckle. Matt says that it was like seeing your best friend or a family member going down that ramp; and he is all on fire, envisioning his own entrance music and pyro. Their faces, as they watch the show, are all agog..and rightly so..and we hear their reactions. Al does a nice crossbo dy onto whoever that is (Maven? Not sure..); Ivory, in turn, does one onto Molly. It is a madhouse..and the show winds up with a high five from Billy Gunn.
After the excitement of the show, they are taken backstage to a small, quiet room. Ivory is there, and give hugs all around. In walks Vince McMahon..and (after his montage, of course) they all tremble in fear. They introduce themselves and are careful to make eye contact, hahaha..Good job. Vince asks them if they enjoyed the event, and they say they did. He then asks them if that is what they all want to do..night after night, etc..and hopes that if that is the case, they find it. He says that there is no experience like it, and that it is an honor and a privilege to be in the business. He wishes them good luck, shakes their hands and takes his leave. Jonah says that meeting Vince was overwhelming, and that that is 'the dream of every wrestler'. They all take a moment to let it sink in, then are on their way back home.
Next morning, it is the final day. The contestants are shown packing up, and we hear their thoughts. It was the greatest thing that happened to them, they have developed a passion for the business, and they will go on..even if they do not win. They each feel like a family, and want all to win. Yadda, yadda. Heartwarming moments of bonding are shown, thus ending the show in a big 'ol group hug. Good luck, guys.
'Big' comes on again--telling us how hard it is to make the choices they have to make, etc...and imploring us all to cast our votes--again, on ToughEnough.com or MTV.com..and to tune in to next week's live broadcast..to find out who are the Final Four...See you all then. Fade to black.