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The Biggest Loser 2: A PreviewPage 2
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Shannon Mullen, 29, Revere, Massachusetts
Shannon is described as “the diva.” She says, “I know I’m cute, everyone tells me ‘You are gorgeous’!” She says she’s sick of hearing, “You don’t need to lose weight – you’re beautiful!” because she knows she does indeed need to lose some weight. Um, your friends are not helping you here Shannon, and I’m glad to see you recognize that. So maybe you’re just a mini-diva. Unfortunately, she also admits to being stubborn. As much as we all love an entertaining diva on our reality TV shows, to a bunch of underfed cranky people, she just might be an early eviction target. Although all the women brought clothing as motivational “goal items,” Shannon’s is a bikini!
Suzanne Mendonca, 26, Franklin Square, New York
Suzanne is “the bride to be,” and wants to lose a hundred pounds for her wedding. Although I don’t know the timeframe, that seems unrealistic. An NYPD cop, Suzanne diets often, but unsuccessfully. Chocolate is her weakness.
Suzy Preston, 28, Des Moines, Washington
We have a ”Suzy” as well as a “Suzanne,” are they kidding me? This is a recapper’s nightmare! At any rate, Suzy is another hairdresser and is described as “selfless” and “demure.” She wants to get into shape and find “the man of her dreams.” Suzy thinks she got “the fat genes” in the family, as her mother and sister are skinny – I bet it won’t be long before Bob sets her straight on that theory! But, if she can last long enough, it’s very possible that likeable Suzy can become a big fan favorite.
THE MEN (Red Team):
Jeff Levine, 42, Hillsborough, New Jersey
Doctor Jeff is one of the larger guys. He says he’s “lost credibility with my patients,” and needs to lose weight for when he needs to recommend necessary lifestyle changes to overweight patients. Leading such a busy life at work and at home with his wife and four pretty daughters, Jeff has not been putting sufficient focus into his own life. He has reached the stage where he is suffering physical ailments due to his size, a partial list of which includes degenerative ankle joint pain, phlebitis if he travels by airplane, and he wears a sleep apnea mask every night. This has led him to recognize that he wants to do more than just be a spectator in his family’s lives.
Mark Yesitis, 36, Campbell, California
Mark is with the SFPD, and he is tired of the “fat jokes.” He joined the police to be inspirational to others, so I expect he could prove to be a very positive and likeable guy. A cancer survivor, his motivational “goal item” is a bulletproof vest that no longer provides sufficient protection for his frame.
Matt Hoover, 28, Marion, Iowa
Matt was once an athlete, a wrestler with Olympic potential at the 177 and 190 pound weight levels. Foiled by an injury, he has greatly increased his weight in the last four years, and he may be one of the bigger guys. Matt has championship spirit and may inspire both teammates and viewers.
Nick Gaza, 39, Glendale, California
Stand-up comic Nick hides behind comedy to mask his weight issues. One Nick quote is, “I’d rather have chip dip than sex.” It’s a lifestyle not conducive to a strict diet regimen, and he admits to being previously unmotivated to adopt a healthier lifestyle. He says his body is the result of what 40 years of living “just for fun” will produce. Nick ought to be good television, but he needs to gain the necessary motivation in order to stick around long enough for us to enjoy the laughs.
Pete Thomas, 36, Ypsilanti, Michigan
Jovial Pete learned bad eating habits at a young age from some of his foster parents, where to cut costs, dinner was often defined by the availability of 2-for-1 burger coupons. I suspect Pete could become a fan favorite, too. His inspiration is one heck of a snazzy white suit!
Ruben Hernandez, 37, Culver City, California
Outgoing Ruben sees himself as a skinny guy in a fat body, and wants that skinny body back again. He might be somewhat of “an instigator.” Some of his size he attributes to once working for a French pastry chef, and over-sampling the wares. Compared to some of the others, Ruben seems a little more energetic and less out of shape, which may help in competitions. He is worried about going home first, and says, “I’m fighting, not only to stay on the show, but I’m fighting for my life.”
Seth Word, 24, Sacramento, California
Youngest of the men, new dad Seth’s objective is to live long enough to see his son grow up. A Mormon, he’s also motivated by his love for his wife. Seth is another who has added significant weight in recent time. Working in sales, I expect Seth will be able to motivate himself to succeed.
So, those are our fourteen contestants. Male trainer Bob will direct the efforts of the women on the Blue Team, while the Red Team of men will toil under trainer Jillian’s control.
Most every person’s motivational “goal item” was an item of clothing, so except for the unusual ones, I didn’t mention them. I’m sure you’ll get to see them all during the show. My one general comment from looking at the videos is that in total, this group might outweigh last year’s group. I think Bob and Jillian have their work cut out for them!
NBC has set up a good website for the show that you might want to check it out. One feature will be a weekly commentary from Season 1 contestant Gary. Another is a page on each of the Season 1 contestants, including a recent picture. Most all have continued to lose weight. Gary, Ryan and yummy Dana are looking particularly spiffy!
The Biggest Loser 2 is on Tuesdays at 8PM ET/PT on NBC, with the first episode airing on Tuesday, September 13th. This first episode is 90 minutes long, the rest are the standard 60 minutes. Join me here each Wednesday for a recap of all the action, sprinkled with my own reactions and opinions!
Brian lives in Toronto where he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. He’d like to hear your opinions and promises to respond to all serious email.
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