Here we are; a new season of All Stars has arrived. You can head to Paramount+ to stream full episodes, but like I did last season, I am going to cover all of the old school moments we need to know to make the episodes make sense. But be forewarned, a lot of these competitors are very recent, so “old school” keeps becoming more recent with each passing season.
1. Three Time’s the Charm
Veronica and Tina enter first, and Veronica says she’s the only three-time Champ. Wrong. Evelyn exists. And if we’re counting spin-offs, Cara Maria.
2. Used Car Bergmann
Of course, Wes shows up and he brings his reputation of being as honest as a “used car salesman.” This has always been a part of his character, probably starting with The Ruins when he showed up to sabotage his team.
3. A Portland Reunion
Nia and Jordan arrive, and the two are quite happy to see each other. This is a development since we last saw Nia leaving Battle of the Exes 2 for touching Jordan inappropriately. Jordan also leans into his checkered past, namely his racist comments from his Real World season. But I have to admit, it is nice to see production acknowledging these moments.
4. A Sight for Small Eyes
The mission is called Tunnel Vision and competitors need to look through small peepholes in the wall and memorize a puzzle. Then, they need to run back and recreate the puzzle. This is most similar to Decontamination on Total Madness. Oddly enough, that season also had an elimination called Tunnel Vision… as did Rivals 3. Wes lost the elimination on Rivals 3, but he won the challenge today. Meanwhile, Sylvia zooms through it and wins for the girls.
5. Vendettas is a Dish Best Re-served
The winners will be joined by the two other best competitors from each sex to form “the authority.” Meanwhile, the two winners also have the power to “sabotage” someone at the next challenge. This is akin to grenades from Vendettas and the Troika or Tribunal from seasons 31 & 33-35.
6. Started from the Bottom
The authority ultimately chooses to send in Tyler and Tina because they finished second-to-last in the daily challenge. This is the fairest method, even though Veronica didn’t want to vote in her friend Tina. But this is akin to the men on Battle of the Sexes 1. If you make decisions performance-based, people aren’t likely to get mad.
7. Small Hall Brawl
The elimination is called Crawl Brawl which is kind of like Hall Brawl. Competitors will need to transfer three sandbags through a caged tunnel and pass by their opponent, but there’s not a lot of confrontation. Tina and Syrus defeat Cynthia and Tyler.
8. More Stars
All competitors have one star on their jerseys. Now, Syrus and Tina have two. Apparently you get a second star when you win an elimination and it gives your more power, but what does that mean? We don’t know yet, but I hope it’s not the same as the skull twist on Total Madness or Double Agents.
9. Austin Again
Melinda is excited to be back in the game with Wes, but she worries that he adds a target to her back. Can you blame her? The entire Austin team left Battle of the Seasons in the first two episodes in 2012.
10. Heading Back
The second challenge is called Out of Reach. Competitors need to swing and kick over a box to retrieve a key. That unlocks puzzle pieces, and they need to complete a puzzle to clock a time. If you can’t reach the key, you fall into the water and need to complete the puzzle with a time penalty. Yes and Kendal get the win, but Laterrian comes in dead last for the men and Tina gets disqualified for falling out of the swing.
11. A New Yes
On All Stars 1, Yes took a very neutral stance, but this season he has an enemy. Wes called Yes “pompus” and thinks his kindness is a strategy. Meanwhile, Yes doesn’t like Wes for his political game. But in the “authority” Brad doesn’t want to vote in Wes. Yes and Jordan are immediately suspicious, and Yes wants to put Wes in, but ultimately, Mark and Melinda get the nomination.
12. A Quitter’s Game
The elimination is a double All Stars deja vus, as Tina and Melinda “competed” on All Stars 2, even though Tina just quit. This time, Melinda needs to duck out because her ankle is hurt from the All Stars 2 final.
13. A Bright Move
For the men, the game is called Lights Out, and it’s very close to Push Me from The Duel. But, there’s no carabeaner to ruin things. Instead, competitors need to put out a light. LT and Mark have a rematch from All Stars 1, but this is a much slower game. Mark waits for LT to wear himself out, and tries to pull a fast move by reversing the pole. But this doesn’t work, and it lets Mark get the win.