The Challenge All Stars Season 2

Mandie Freire
FiredUp Network Sports Writer

@mandiesf

Thursday, November 25, 2021


Episode 2 Recap

The All-Stars season has started off with a bang once again. With great 90s music, a great cast, and TJ Lavin back to host, this is a season not to be missed. I have to say I am preferring to watch these episodes over the main Challenge season episodes at this moment.

Episode 2 just has to be written about. I think it is an episode that will go down in history. It is undeniably the most emotional Challenge episode I have ever watched, with tears trickling down my face at multiple points in the episode. After having come in last place in the first daily Challenge, Nehemiah and Ayanna have to go down into elimination. Nehemiah has his preferences of who he wants to compete against but the winners, Derrick and Jodi, have other plans (well mostly Derrick). We can see that Jodi has a hard time picking players to send in (she also becomes teary when discussing this with the potential competitors).

Jodi and Derrick have to choose 2 pairs of competitors to potentially go in, however, the pair will ultimately be decided by a house vote. Although Nehemiah wanted Ryan to be one of the candidates, Derrick does not choose him because of their friendship. Nehemiah is extremely upset about this and thus, his revenge for Derrick continues. Finally, Derek C and Leah are voted in to compete against Nehemiah and Ayanna. Derek C's Real World castmates, Jonna and Jasmine are especially disappointed with this vote.

In the evening scene, we see Derek C reveal to Jonna that his younger sister took her life a day before he left for the Challenge. I can't even begin to imagine how hard it must have been for him to leave and compete this season. He said his sister was his biggest fan and he was competing for her. This is absolutely heartbreaking news to hear and one can't help but want him to win in elimination. 

In elimination, the males compete first. In this elimination, the competitors must drag 3 heavy coffins across the arena, solve a puzzle, and link all three chains onto a post. This was a hard and close fight between Derek C and Nehemiah. Nehemiah had the lead the whole time but Derek was very close behind, almost catching up to him. Finally, Nehemiah is able to push through and come out with the win. We see Derek crying, knowing he was competing for his sister. We see Jasmine and Jonna crying and this is the first moment when tears start streaming from my eyes. I am a Nehemiah fan too but one couldn't help but cheer for Derek C, knowing what he has been through.

Next up are the ladies. Ayanna revealed to us in the episode that she was once a D1 track athlete and now she is a mom of 4. She still seems tough, ready to compete and she doesn't care who she competes against. Leah, on the other hand, doesn't look like she has it in her to compete. This is evident in the elimination. Leah struggles for a long time trying to unlock one of her chains while Ayanna seems to just stroll right through this elimination without any effort. She obviously wins, however, she is not done yet. She makes her way over to Leah and encouragingly helps Leah to finish dragging her coffin over to the finish line. This is an amazing scene showcasing sportsmanship, togetherness and the power of women/moms. The cameras show almost the whole cast crying watching this act of camaraderie. And again, this is the second point where tears stream down my face.

When all is said and done, you can see that TJ was so impressed with both of these eliminations and the bravery and sportsmanship that was shown. He says he hopes to see both Derek and Leah compete again in the future. I especially hope to see Derek again so he can get another chance at proving his competitiveness. Once again, I am impressed with another All-Stars season. 

Image credit: upi.com