COUPLES FEAR FACTOR (1) (1/3/04)
by Fearless Frankie
8 couples. 7 weeks. 1 million dollars! Yeah, baby, it's Couples Fear Factor time! All 8 couples were ecstatic to be on Fear Factor and all were convinced they would go home million-dollar winners. Let's meet them, shall we? Lisa Marie & Scott have been dating four years. Richard & Tara are engaged, which they think gives them more incentive to win. Andre & Amirah, just dating. Bobby & Amy are also just dating. The only married couple, Dean & Ashley, think that if they can survive marriage they can definitely win Couples Fear Factor. Robert & Leah are just dating but admittedly "on the rocks". Maria & Craig, dating long distance. Randy & Tina, also just dating. With only one married couple, I say there are 7 potential breakups in the works! Nothing tests a relationship's boundaries like Fear Factor! In fact, the very first round of competition pushed some couples close to the edge.
Surrounded by tall grass, the couples watched as two helicopters buzzed over a murky lake. Joe explained that the male partner would hang from one helicopter by his ankles, while his lady waited in the freezing water below. He would pull her out of the water using a rope and they would remain suspended for as long as possible. The couples would compete two at a time, hence the two helicopters. However, there would be no elimination. Instead, the couple that could hang on the longest would get to choose one of five Capital One cards, with values ranging $10,000 to $50,000. Dean & Ashley were up against Craig & Maria first. Getting the ladies out of the water wasn't a problem. However, the ropes soon began to swing under the hovering helicopters, making it tough for everyone to hang on. They hung in there (so to speak) for quite awhile. Maria finally slipped off just over 50 seconds in to the stunt. Ashley, meanwhile, was still holding out for the Capital One card. As the minute mark approached you could see Ashley yelling up to Dean, "I'm falling!" Sure enough, she fell. Dean & Ashley's final time was still an impressive 1:02.5.
Next, Leah & Roberto went up against Tina & Randy. Much to everyone's amazement, both couples rapidly approached beating Craig & Ashley's time. Just after one minute of clinging for dear life, Roberto dropped the rope and sent Leah into the lake! About five seconds later, Tina also slipped into the drink. Tina & Randy, however, had bested Craig & Ashley's time by 4 seconds, and were now in the lead. Scott & Lisa Marie thought they could last 2 minutes. They were competing opposite Bobby & Amy. A word about Bobby & Amy: tattoos. She had full sleeves on both arms, and said two-thirds of her body was tattooed. He had less arm work, but did have Amy's name tattooed just below his right armpit. How romantic is that? (Not to mention smelly.) Seriously, the smell thing was a fear factor for Amy & Bobby's competitors. The couple did shower, but did NOT wear deodorant. As Randy said, "They make Right Guard turn left!" As Roberto and Bobby got lifted into position, storm clouds rolled in and a light rain started to fall. Lisa Marie slipped off the rope after only 30 seconds. Amy & Bobby, however, hung on like stinky champs and finished with the new top time: 1:18.4.
Andre & Amirah faced off against Richard & Tara in the final competition of the day. Once airborne, Richard shouted encouragements to Tara, but she slipped off early in the competition. Could Andre & Amirah outlast 1:18? It was a very close call. Amirah slipped off for a final time of 1:08. Bobby & Amy could claim their Capital One card. Amy did "eeny-meeny-miney-moe" and wound up with $10,000.
The next stunt was definitely an elimination stunt and took place indoors. And you know what indoors usually means…yummy, yummy Fear Factor gross stunt! A delightful array of cod egg sac, fish eyes, fish stomach and sea snails awaited our hungry teams. The teams wouldn't just be eating this stuff. The stunt involved a big, stinky, slimy tank filled with rancid water and rotting fish parts. At one end of the tank, hanging just above the brown water, were several huge tunas. Each team would work together to transfer the heavy, slippery tunas from one end of the large tank to the other. Then, they'd have to dive into the tank to retrieve a canister filled with one of the four delicacies. Only after they ate the contents of the container would the stunt be finished and time stopped. The slowest couple would be eliminated and the second-slowest couple would not be allowed to compete in the next reward stunt. The fastest team would win $10,000. Since Amy & Bobby had won the first stunt they were allowed to choose the order on this stunt. They chose Andre & Amirah to compete against Dean & Ashley.
At the "go" signal, both couples dunked into the disgusting, vile water and navigated under a few obstacles to reach the tunas. Both teams worked an over/under system to move the tunas back across the tank. Dean & Ashley pulled ahead, with Dean seemingly effortlessly flinging the heavy tunas over the side of the tank. Finally, they retrieved their canister, which revealed cod egg sacs. Dean & Ashley started chewing and realized how tough (literally and figuratively) the cod sacs were to eat. By the time Andre & Amirah got to their canister they were exhausted, but they had to eat sea snails. Both couples had some tough chewing ahead, but Andre & Amirah caught up and cleaned their plate first for a final time of just over six minutes. Ashley & Dean knew they had to finish, to avoid being last or even second-to-last. They finally choked down the last of the cod sacs for a final time of 9:55.
Next into the tank were Richard & Tara versus Randy & Tina. Richard & Tara pulled into a quick lead, but Randy & Tina stepped it up as the tuna passing progressed. The final tunas were tossed almost simultaneously. Randy & Tina's canister contained fish stomachs, while Richard & Tara drew fish eyeballs. Randy was gagging, but knew if he threw up they'd be eliminated. If one partner couldn't eat, the other could eat everything. Tara must've figured she would throw up so she stopped eating and let Richard eat all the eyeballs himself. Randy & Tina finished first with a final time of 10:34. Joe started taunting Tara for not eating, but she still wouldn't do it. They finished with a final time of 10:58. Dean & Ashley were saved from elimination. Bobby & Amy chose to go next against Roberto & Leah. Bobby & Amy blazed ahead, especially when Roberto "lost" the tuna in the murky, smelly waters of the tank. Meanwhile, Bobby & Amy had advanced to eating eyeballs - which Amy had hoped for. "I love the way eyeballs feel," she later said. Whatever! Roberto & Leah also got eyeballs, and all eyes were on them as they gagged down their snack. They actually wound up beating Bobby & Amy with a final time of 9:10. Bobby & Amy finished close behind with a time of 10:18. Both couples had finished well ahead of the previous two couples. Lisa Marie & Scott and Craig & Maria were the final two couples.
The teams were neck-and-neck from the get go. Tunas were flying. Smelly water was splashing. It was crazy. Both couples got eyeballs, but Scott & Lisa Marie wanted to make up for coming in last the day before. Boy did they make up for it. They finished in 5:18, earning them $10,000 and first place. Craig & Maria had a tougher time with the eyeballs, but still finished in just over 7 minutes. Richard & Tara had been eliminated. Randy & Tina had earned the dishonor of being excluded from the next rewards challenge.
And so ended part one of a seven-week journey filled with new stunts, new fears and (hopefully) plenty of new shouting matches!