Last week on The Mole, 12 contestants entered into a competition for a chance to win up to $500,000. For the first mission of the season, each of the players had to guide a raft over a waterfall while simultaneously attempting to grab a bag full of cash. In the next challenge, the contestants struggled to identify five items that 18th century sailor Alexander Selkirk would have traveled with. After analyzing each other during these adventures, the players were then quizzed on their knowledge of the mole. When it became obvious that Marcie knew next to nothing about the titular schemer, she was eliminated from the competition.
Tonight, the gang plays soccer against an intimidating Chilean team, and one more player gets “executed” by host Jon Kelley.
Last week’s premiere of The Mole was watched by a scant audience of under five million people, which is kind of sad considering it was a return four years in the making. Where are the viewers? My theory is that people aren’t tuning in because 10pm is a hideous time slot for a show like this. I like to see people backstabbing each other in exotic locales around 8pm, not in the dead of night. In case you’re wondering, yes, 10pm is the dead of night for an old man in his late twenties such as myself.
Welcome to Santiago, Chile, which is where Jon gathers the contestants at the bottom of a massive hill. For the first mission, the players have to split into two groups depending on their outlook on life. Nine people who consider themselves goal oriented are to split into one team, while two who look at life as an uphill battle will form the other. Because Mark and Kristen fall in the latter category, they get to ride a bicycle built for two all the way up the hill. The other nine contestants get to take a gondola ride to the top, but they have to score a goal in a soccer game against a Chilean team beforehand. No money goes into the pot if Mark and Kristen make it up the hill first, but an additional $35,000 will be added if the other team pulls ahead.
Let the race begin! Mark and Kristen immediately have trouble when the chain falls off their bike, while the other team is shocked to find that the expert Chilean team is composed of children. Paul and Bobby think they’ve got the game in the bag, but they soon discover that the kids are all miniature clones of David Beckham. While The Mole players get their butts handed to them, Bobby once again pretends like he has no athletic ability whatsoever. Seriously, I’ve seen The Golden Girls work out more furiously than Bobby does.
After twenty minutes without scoring a goal, Ali finally lands a penalty kick. The team gets tickets for the gondola ride, but problems arise when they have to locate the departure station. People limp along, get lost, split up, and in Liz’s case, sit down to rest for a while. Unlike Bobby, she has the excuse of being old and actually needing some rest.
Mark and Kristen, who have decided to jog instead of maneuvering the bike, run into Jon halfway up the path. He offers them a taxi ride to the top if they’re willing to lose $5,000 from the pot. Mark declines in the bitchiest way possible, because apparently he gets cranky after running miles up freakishly large hills. Even with exhausted legs and negative attitudes, Kristen and Mark make it to the top before the other nine players. They’re exempt from elimination tonight, but there’s also no additional money going into the pot.
It’s time for the nine soccer players to turn on each other and play the blame game for losing the challenge. People wonder if Bobby is faking his lack of athleticism, which causes Victoria and Paul to get into a battle of wits. Victoria believes Bobby’s story and stands by him, but Paul thinks his excuses sound a little fishy. I’m with Paul on this one.
The players leave Santiago and head to a pig farm in Pomaire, which makes me feel like I’m watching Farmer Wants a Wife. Three teams of three are tasked with finding 50 piggy banks that are scattered around town. They’ll return the banks to the farm and shoot them through the air with a slingshot while Liz and Paul attempt to catch them. For each pig that flies its way to safety, $1,000 will be added to the pot. This is Jon’s chance to make many jokes about pigs flying. Har-har-har!
Bobby gets winded once again while running to town, forcing his teammates to push him in a wheelbarrow. Seriously, what’s wrong with Bobby? It seems way too obvious for him to be the mole, but he apparently has the constitution of a 95-year-old woman.
While waiting for the teams to return, Paul becomes convinced that one of the pigs contains an exemption token. He decides to smash the bank against the fence, which screws the team out of a thousand bucks. Luckily for him, he’s correct and there’s an exemption token inside. Liz considers beating him to a pulp to steal it, which is something I’d pay good money to see.
It’s time to launch some pigs into the air! Alex insists on being the one to slingshot the pigs over the wall, which ends with porcelain shattering every single time. Craig steps in, takes over, and things start going more smoothly. His prior experience launching water balloons has finally paid off. As the challenge comes to an end a total of 28 pigs have reached safety, bringing the money in the pot to $63,000. In news that comes as a surprise to no one, Bobby’s team didn’t bring back any pigs because they were too busy pushing his elderly ass around in a wheelbarrow.
Before the quiz begins, Bobby discovers that Alex has left his journal lying around for anyone to see. The journals are where the players write down all information about the mole, so it appears to be a stupid move. However, what Bobby doesn’t know is that Alex left it behind intentionally in order to rouse suspicion. Devious!
The players take the quiz to test their information about the mole, then gather together to face execution. Thanks to those handy exemptions, Paul, Mark and Kristen cannot be eliminated tonight. Jon calls out the contestants one by one and reveals their quiz results, telling them that they’re safe and ready to move on. The one person who isn’t safe is Liz, who promptly gets executed for not knowing enough about the mole. Curses! I liked Liz and her sassy old lady ways.
After elimination, Paul picks on Bobby for being completely useless and needing a woman to push him around in a wheelbarrow. Nicole responds to this by telling Paul that she could kill him in his sleep without leaving any forensic evidence. I love it! If she does it maybe next week’s episode could be a very special crossover with CSI, which would certainly be watched by more than five million people.
– Don Williams, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of ABC)