The Challenge

Who Should Have Returned? Challengers Who Retired After The Gauntlet 3 & The Island

Just like I did for The Gauntlet 2 and the three seasons following, I am going to continue to look at Challenge competitors who ended their careers. This time, I’m looking at The Gauntlet 3 & The Island. Eleven competitors made their final appearances on these seasons.

While we are waiting for a new season, I have been rewatching the seasons available on CBS All Access. You can still get a 30 day free trial if you’d like to follow along.

These competitors are ranked based upon their importance to The Challenge. Their performances in challenges, relevant storylines, and ability to fit into future themes will all be considered.

11. Alex Smith

Did Alex even want to be there? He gave up in elimination because the sun was our and was too tired to continue in Piñata Pit. He was central to the show on Real World: Denver. On The Gauntlet 3, he took the earliest flight home he could. At the very least, he scarified himself in The Gauntlet so no one else would have to go home. A noble move, but when that’s your claim to fame, perhaps The Challenge isn’t for you.

10. Colie Edison

Unlike her Denver roommate Alex, Colie had some drive to compete. On The Inferno 3, she was super clumsy and never helped her team in missions. On The Island, well, it was The Island. She wasn’t working with the majority alliance, so it was no surprise she was eliminated. I doubt Colie would have ever won, so it’s not a huge loss to see her go.

9. Rachel Moyal

Of all of the winners on Gauntlet 3, Rachel is likely the least remembered. She coasted through the season thanks to her poor performance and Austin alliance. With four Austin roommates on a single team, they had a lot of control over the voting. As a result, Jillian saw three Gauntlets while Rachel saw zero after costing her team a couple missions. She could have returned as a champion, but her only value would be to weaken an otherwise strong Champ team.

8. Zach Mann

Remember that guy from Real World Key West? Not Bananas, the other guy. No, not Tyler either.

This is basically Zach’s legacy on the show. While he was actually a decently good competitor, he was uninvolved in drama and seemed to be on the show to make friends. Most people did like him, but his absence wasn’t felt on future seasons.

7. Angel Turlington

The main source of drama on Road Rules Viewers’ Revenge, Angel lived up to her name on The Gauntlet 3. She wasn’t the source of drama this time and accepted her fate in the first girls’ Gauntlet of the season. In the Ram it Home game she almost had a come-from-behind victory, but ultimately lost. She might be remembered for her brief fling with Nehemiah, but more likely she just isn’t remembered.

6. Ashli Robinson

It really sucks to have The Island as your only season, and it doubly sucks to go home injured. Ashli split her toe open during a drunken party, and while it didn’t force her out of the game, she tried to compete but failed. This made her a scapegoat and she was booted from The Island so Paula and Jenn could get keys. Ashli could have been Dunbar’s ex on a future season, but we were super close to seeing her for a second time on Battle of the Seasons. She flew all the way to Turkey with Dunbar, Isaac, and Kellyanne. Then, the team got booted for unconfirmed reasons.

5. Dave Malinosky

Perhaps I’m gravely mistaken, but I think Dave had more potential than we ever gave him credit for. The Island was an awful and uncomfortable environment. Leaving early on is not only understandable, but also part of the game. Dave should have returned simply to have a fair shot at competing and so we’d see some Hollywood representation on the show.

4. Janelle Casanave

Winner of The Inferno 3, Janelle was the third girl out of The Gauntlet 3. She was partially a victim of bad alliances, but she may have lasted longer if the Veterans didn’t have control in eliminations. Regardless, she was solid on The Inferno 3 and had a lot more potential than many of the other girls in the game.

3. Beth Stolarczyk

If we’re being really honest, Beth was not an awful competitor in the end. She was known for a fear of heights and quitting The Gauntlet 2 because she didn’t want to wrestle in the sand. Flash forward to Gauntlet 3, and Beth was jumping into the water and wrestling Coral in Ball Brawl. Of course, she was unpopular because she was a villain, but she was the best kind of villain there was. She caused drama, but girls had a very real fear of losing to her. If Beth returned, we would have gotten more of the same ol’ Beth. Perhaps I’m sympathetic to Beth now that I am older. She was teased for being 36 and on The Challenge by people who grew up to be 36 and on The Challenge.

2. Coral Smith

We all know Coral quit on The Gauntlet 3. While TJ hates his quitters, in retrospect, we know she was jumping off a sinking ship. The fact of the matter is Coral always delivers on The Challenge. We know she is a solid competitor, both physically and socially. Coral is one of the girls who established the game and it’s a shame to see her leave on such as negative note. Even if you don’t think she’s the best competitor, you know she has the best commentary. However, I don’t think she’d be happy with the recent state of the game. Not only does sexism run rampant, seasons like War of the Worlds and Final Reckoning proves its baked into the formatting.

1. Frank Roessler

Whiney, pessimistic, and surprisingly strong, Frank was the muscle of the Rookies team on Gauntlet 3. He managed to defeat competitors twice his size and led his team into the final. While the Rookies won by default, Frank alone could have given most of the veterans a run for their money. A lot of viewers became interested in his relationship with Jillian, and they would have been a stellar Exes team. While Frank leaves the game with a good reputation, it’s hard to be content with his exit after his Gauntlet 3 successes.

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