The Biggest Loser: Of Trainer Tag Teams and Seriously Emotional Second Chances


The upcoming season of The Biggest Loser is about second chances, as has been said, but I should've realized that it means it's a more gut-wrenching emotional ride than past seasons.


"We have these contestants who have been to hell and back, to be quite frank," Jillian Michaels told E! Online. "The idea is how do we heal these old injuries and rehabilitate these contestants, not just physically, but emotionally."


"We want to get to the why as opposed to just the how," Bob Harper added. "They're going to come in thinking, 'Okay, I'm going to know how to work out. I'm going to know how to eat right.' No, we're going to be looking at every aspect of your life."


It seems that the season will train its sights on two contestants: Daniel Wright, who joined last season and aimed to continue his weight loss this season; and Abby Rike, who lost her husband and two kids in a tragic car crash.


"We were really happy that the show was taking responsibility and seeing his journey through," Jillian said of Dan's return. "Here is a kid that came in last every challenge [last season], and the very first challenge [this season] he comes in first."


And Jillian will find herself getting pretty affected by Abby's story. "I know that I should not be putting my personal issues on the table or letting them affect my work with the contestants," she said. "And I try not to. But as you'll see in episode one, when Abby is talking about losing her family, I had a personal identification with it, and I had a reaction, which I was disappointed in myself for doing because I don't want the contestant to turn around and think she has to take care of me. I'm working on containing that as much as possible. I have yet to be successful."


Perhaps that emotional sucker punch contributed to, if I got it right, what is perhaps the most significant change this season: Bob and Jillian working together. "This is how the show should've been since its onset," Jillian said. "Personally, I never want to see it go back the other way. The competition exists between the contestants and should not involve the trainers whatsoever."


"She is the one person I can go to and have always been able to go to," Bob added. "But in seasons past, you never really got to see that. Now all of a sudden you see our two forces really joined together. I really think there is magic there."


But maybe it wasn't so good for the contestants. "It was relentless," Bob said. "I'm literally taking every amount of energy this one girl has got, and when she thinks she's done, all of sudden Jillian is like, 'my turn.' It was unbelievable. We felt bad for the contestants."


"They were getting it from all angles," Jillian added. "It was awful."


But if it's for the better, then the initial confusion's understandable. Right?


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