For the past four seasons, we’ve had a presence from the UK on The Challenge. Above all other cast members, Geordie Shore’s Kyle Christie has been representing his country on the show. He has been on all four seasons since Vendettas, making him the only UK competitor with this long of a streak.
He will return to Total Madness, his fifth season, next week. Could this season be his chance to become a Challenge champion? Or is his fate to watch his allies get picked off, then become a victim of his enemies. Past performances make it seem that Kyle’s luck could go either way.
Coming into this season, Kyle got a decent amount of luck that allowed him do adapt easily. His original Vendetta, Rogan, was injured during the first competition and left the game before the seasons really started. Meanwhile, the other Brit, Joss won the first Challenge. Kyle played a good social game and allowed his athletic abilities to be diminished. That means he was picked to be in a few Troikas and avoided every elimination. His relationship with Cara Maria allowed him to befriend many of the vets, and they started picking each other off before they went for Kyle. So, Kyle made it all the way to the final and came in third. Not bad for his first stab at The Challenge, but his abilities weren’t tested like most rookies are.
Somehow, Kyle was paired with Brad for Final Reckoning. This should have been a dominant team, because these two may have been the strongest duo on paper. They started strong, but Kyle quickly got involved in a sloppy love triangle and messy burn votes. After a single win at the beginning of the season, the two went on a losing streak. Kyle displayed a lack of coordination, difficulties with puzzles, and topped it off by losing in Redemption to Natalie. It seemed like all of the shortcomings Vendettas hid were exposed on Final Reckoning.
War of the Worlds
There’s no doubt Kyle got lucky when Mattie picked him as a partner. She’s a physical beast, but Kyle also improved a lot from Final Reckoning. As a team they only made it into two Tribunals, but individually they had more successes. Kyle eliminated CT in a surprising physical elimination, and Bear in a silly trivia game. Kyle seemed to outlast most of his veteran allies this season, and benefitted by knowing a bunch of the Brits invading the game. Socially he was strong, and physically he improved. However, he lost to Theo in Hall Brawl after sustaining a few injuries throughout his battles. Kyle displayed a great performance here, but viewers were annoyed by his continuous banter with Paulie.
War of the Worlds 2
Kyle may not be the strongest guy, but he was in the better half on the UK team this season. Sadly, he was on the wrong half of the UK alliance and he started the season by watching his friends get picked off one by one. There isn’t a whole lot to note for Kyle this time around. He didn’t cost his team any challenges, but he was never their saving grace.
Coming into this season, I actually think Kyle is in one of his best positions. Mostly because many of his enemies from the prior seasons are not here. We don’t have people like Paulie, Cara Maria, Joss, or Ninja use his name as a burn vote or try to eliminate him. He will have a few enemies in the game. I don’t expect people like Wes or Rogan to side with him, but I do expect him to work with people like Bananas, CT, and Jordan.
I also think he improved from his second two seasons, and he is physically stronger than he was on Final Reckoning or Vendettas. He’s never been an awful player, but he’s also never had a huge intimidation factor.
There is one may concern for Kyle this season, and that’s the mandatory eliminations. If it’s physical, he’s got a shot at winning. If it’s speed or endurance, he has less of a shot but still some chance of winning. When we look at puzzles, logic, or eating, he might as well keep his bags packed.
I think Kyle’s problem, based on prior seasons, is his willingness to go into survival mode and avoid eliminations at all costs. Usually, this is a great idea. This season, the longer you wait the, slimmer your pickings. People who go into early eliminations will face competitors who are perceived to be easy. If you wait too long, your options could be Jordan or CT. Kyle is the type to ride the wave as long as possible and hope for the best.
Ultimately, I still think Kyle has a good shot in this game. Loyalty has never been an issue with him, and if his side of the house has the majority he will benefit greatly. I could see him getting far in the game, and I’d rank him above Cory as a competitor but below Wes, Bananas, CT, Jordan, and Nelson. He’s probably a middle of the pact player, skewed toward the better half.
But in a game like The Challenge, anything can happen.