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Biggest Loser 5: A Preview – The Cast Is Announcedby Brian Towers -- 12/27/2007
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In recent press releases and web-posted material, NBC has passed on some details about the next season of The Biggest Loser. As stated above, there will be ten teams of two people each. One thing is for sure, with everyone wearing different jerseys, it will make for the most colorful season yet!
One twist is that one of the teams will not have a pre-existing relationship, and further, they will not know that they will be competing as a duo until the show begins!
Although there are ten teams, there will not be ten trainers. In fact, Kim Lyons is sitting out this season, so Bob and Jillian will have their hands full with a greater number of charges than ever before. Series host Alison Sweeney is also back to reprise her duties.
The first episode premieres on New Year’s Day at 8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT. One of the first activities will be for teams to select their trainer. They will also compete in their first challenge, which involves pulling a hot air balloon to win a two-pound weight advantage at the first weigh-in.
One prominent feature this season is a joint venture between MSN and NBC called “The Biggest Loser Million Pound Match-Up,” which has multiple aspects to it. Here’s the skinny:
The first aspect of the program is called “The Million Pound Match-Up.” Viewers at home are encouraged to register for the challenge and lose weight (you can register now). As per the press release, “Participants will be able to sign up for the challenge to lose a million pounds, beginning December 18th at MSN’s site. The full site launches on January 1st and will feature a groundbreaking social networking community. Utilizing technology provided by Microsoft's Windows Live Spaces, viewers will be able to match up with a weight loss partner in their area and discuss their journey in a supportive virtual community.” So, just like on the show, participants are paired with a partner to try and lose weight together.
Secondly, that website will offer health tips. Additionally, they will run a sweepstakes with the top five teams winning a trip to L.A. to attend the season finale and wrap party. Speaking from personal experience, never underestimate how much fun a wrap party can be! The winning team wins a luxury fitness trip for two, plus each partner wins the services of a personal trainer for a year. Additionally, some participants will be shown on episodes of The Biggest Loser!
The final aspect to “The Million Pound Match-Up” is “The Million Pound Tour.” To raise general awareness and encourage people to sign up for “The Million Pound Match-Up,” during January and February a promotional tour will make stops in Chicago, Houston, Miami, Wichita, and Mesa, AZ. If you live nearby, it might be fun to check it out!
So… get informed, get slim, get perks, and get famous… who doesn’t love that parlay?
Now, let’s take a more detailed look at out teams. The list of competitors for season five is as follows:
The BROWN team consists of graphic designer Curtis Bray and his wife, Mallory. These college sweethearts live in L.A., where Mallory owns her own business. They have three daughters. Curtis’ ailments include severe sleep apnea, which, if it gets any worse, will necessitate that he undergo a tracheotomy. Gentle Curtis is described as the emotional one, while Mallory is the direct, no-nonsense one.
The PINK team is the mother-daughter combination of Bette Sue Burkland and her daughter, Ali Vincent. Both work in a Mesa, Arizona, hair salon – and Ali is her mom’s boss! Ali has represent USA in synchronized swimming, while Bette Sue, who appears to be quite the firecracker, used to be a motivational speaker. The two of them admit that they may be too similar in nature, and sometimes they argue. Please do – we like the drama, and you’ll get more camera time out of it!
The mother and son duo of ever-smiling Jackie and young Dan Evans of Frankfort, Illinois, is the RED team. She is the CEO of a non-profit organization, where Dan also works as a camp counselor. Dan also aspires to be a musician. An aside, he fits my personal image of how the actor who played “Ralphie” from the movie The Christmas Story would looks today. Jackie talked Dan into applying for the fourth season of this show, where he made it through the audition process until the last cuts. This is another team that is described as likeable and fun-loving, and they seem to get along very well on their video. Other video shows that they do nicely at the first weigh-in and I doubt they are the first ones out.
It may fall to the YELLOW team to provide a little tension on Campus. They are nurse Kelly Fields and her ex-husband, Paul Marks. They now live in different towns in Florida. Paul works in aerospace, where I’m sure his co-workers will often remind him that the website describes him as “a hilarious big teddy bear!” Bob will be their trainer.
The WHITE team consists of a second married couple, Neill (with two “L’s”) and Amanda Harmer from Bethany, Oklahoma. Neill was an Air Force brat who hopes to play hockey again. Conversely, Amanda has spent most of her life in the state of Oklahoma. They are a closely-knit couple with a young child, and I expect their story will center on their love for each other. It seems like they picked Jillian as their trainer.
Maggie King and Jenn Widder from New Jersey are the PURPLE team. They are best friends who work together at… wait for it… a weight loss camp! Both young ladies are described as fun and outgoing, but feel their size limits their interactions with others. They warn us that they might bicker. They are seen training with Jillian.1 2 Next-->
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