What a disparity in challenges on this Beauty & the Geek. I’m not sure that the beauty challenge really increased their smarts, but it was certainly entertaining since it gave Shay and Jasmine the heebie jeebies.

Spoilers creeping your way.

The four remaining beauties had to test their knowledge of animals, including the creepy, crawly kind. And in true Fear Factor fashion, they had to confront some of choice phobias. For Shay it was spiders, while Jasmine just had a problem with, well, everything. They had 10 minutes to grab 7 critters (Madagascar hissing cockroach, giant African millipede, corn snake, African bouncing toad, Hercules beetle grub, pink-toed tarantula and scorpion) and place them in a terrarium labeled with the matching Latin name.

Do we really need to say that Sam won? Not only was he not squeamish, but he’s pretty good at studying and got 5 out of 7 matched. But really, this is where I was proud of Shay and Jasmine. Despite their very intense phobias, they girded their girly loins and made themselves do the challenge. Shay even completed it. Sadly, only one of the names matched.

On the geek side, they had to learn to mix drinks and exhibit some flair — you know, that bottle-flipping showboating stuff seen in that venerable Tom Cruise film Cocktail. All I have to say is that they are soooo lucky that they kicked juggler John out last episode. This gave William a chance to exhibit his mean hand-eye coordination perfected from his doublesticking. And even though he was better than the others, he still wasn’t great. Oh, and his attitude stank. Even Sam, the party man himself, observed: "Nobody wants to sit there and see a cocky bartender make your drinks."

Joshua was just awful. His strategy of just flinging anything and everything in the air and catching it in the glass wasn’t very effective, but he kept a good attitude. Nicole was lame and repetitive. William had the most skill, but was boring. Dave — newly minted, confident and caring Dave — won hands down because he was relatively okay with the technical skills, but had the most personality, something that irked William to no end.

So let’s talk about the default elimination room teams. Shay and Joshua have come the furthest and are hilarous to watch. Josh says she’s very motherly, but then observes that others have compared them to an old married couple. How sadly true. They’re one of the touching stories that comes out of this show.

Not so with William and Jen, and I can’t say I have hopes for a turnaround. When Nicole chides William that "You just insulted her, saying that [Jen] is at a lower level," he replies, "I’m just stating fact." I lay this animosity almost entirely at William’s door. Jen tries over and over to create some sort of dialogue, but in the end, all she can say is, "If I was walking down the street and saw someone down kicking you, I’d stop them," and that’s all.

It’s a sad state of affairs then, that William and Jen stay and Shay and Josh go, but Joshua dropped the ball on his question (which I didn’t know either), so what can you do? I hope William gets his ass kicked, and soon.

Other highlights:

– Shay describing her challenge: "Everything was just no bueno … at all."
– Shay "talking" to her critters: "I didn’t mean to drop you. Come here."
– Dave’s awww moment: "The point of the exercise was not to make edible brownies … but to cheer Jasmine up."
– Jasmine: "I’m not a good drink critic because I drink anything."
– Dave RE: his flair: "It looks cooler than it actually is, which is what I’m all about."
– Sam’s scared face running away from William’s flying bottle.
– Sam about Joshua’s bartending skills: "It’s not much, but he can make my drink any day of the week."
Dave‘s bartending banter: "A day without orange juice is like a day without sunshine."
– Josh and Shay’s imaginary toast, after which he pretended to drink.
– Josh calling Shay "Shalandra," and having her hit him for the impertinence.

Your thoughts on the couples? Who has the best chance of winning? Who ought to win?

Posted by:Hanh Nguyen