January 21, 2002
As the sun glistened off a pristine lake, six new players arrived to learn their fate. As two ultra-boats sped alongside one another at up to forty miles per hour, each player would have to jump from one boat to the other! The distance between the two boats would be a variable and they would have to time their jump perfectly. Nettie, a former track athlete from Fresno, California, was up first. While the others looked on nervously, Nettie aced the jump with no problem - giving everyone else a false sense that the stunt was easy. In fact, Kelly and Tremaine both slammed into the side of the boat and could not hold on, leaving Alexa much less confident. However, Alexa's "belly-flop" technique got her from one boat to the other and guaranteed her advancement to day two. John, a burly New Jersey native, also completed the jump. And then there was Carmen. Carmen, who yanked off his shirt before the stunt was even announced. Carmen, the big-talker. Carmen, who slammed face first into the side of the boat! Ouch.
A seaside wharf greeted the remaining players on day two. Seagulls swooped overhead as they boarded a large fishing boat and met Joe. First, he revealed a bucket containing ten pounds of squid. Would they have to eat it? No˘that would be too easy. Joe lifted the lid (literally) on the real stunt. A deep tank filled chest-high with ten TONS of rotting squid! Hidden in the ink-stained water were 5-pound weights. The two players who retrieved the most weights and placed them on a large, dangling fishhook in the allotted time of 3 minutes, would advance. Nettie instantly turned green by the sight and smell of the slimy squid. Alexa, a San Francisco police officer, entered the tank first. She dove into the task, immersing herself in the water to fish out the weights. The repulsed look on her face spoke volumes as she managed to get 8 weights onto the hook. Nettie practically gagged as she entered the murky, gross water next. She managed not to vomit and retrieve 7 weights - even with a dead squid stuck in her top! John would have to beat her score to stay in the game. He started off good, but as time wound down he was still one weight short of sending Nettie home. With only seconds to spare, John found placed one more weight on the hook!
A dark, empty downtown street greeted John and Alexa for their final stunt. Both seemed confident that they would win - until they saw the 20-story building with the flagpole jutting out from it. Joe explained that they would have to climb out onto the flagpole, retrieve a Fear Factor flag and raise it on the roof. Whoever completed the task the fastest would claim the $50,000 prize. If neither completed the task, there would be no winner. Once atop the building, with the street seemingly miles below, Alexa began freaking out. She almost quit, but Joe's pep talk got her out on the flagpole. Slowly she edged her way along the shaking pole. As she unhooked the flag, she started swearing, but she managed to get back safely. Her final time was four minutes and twenty seconds. John was sure he could do it in half that time. However, it was harder than John expected. He almost fell more than once on his way out to the flag. His large size seemed to make the climb more awkward. Ultimately, he made it back and raised the flag in under a minute, making him the newest Fear Factor champ!