MTV’s original competition series “The Challenge” is getting a CBS-style facelift. Beginning July 6, 2022, more than two dozen former contestants from “Survivor,” “Big Brother,” “The Amazing Race” and “Love Island” will compete against each other in a brand new reality TV show titled “The Challenge: USA.” T. J. Lavin hosts the grueling program, which will air every Wednesday night on CBS (and stream on Paramount Plus) throughout the summer. Click through our photo gallery of “The Challenge: USA” cast photos to see which 28 all-stars are competing.
SEE ‘Survivor’ winners list: All seasons
Among the cast members are six people who previously won their seasons: Tyson Apostol (“Survivor: Blood vs. Water”), Ben Driebergen (“Survivor: Heroes v. Healers v. Hustlers”), Sarah Lacina (“Survivor: Game Changers”), Xavier Prather (“Big Brother 23”), James Wallington (“The Amazing Race 32”) and Justine Ndiba (“Love Island 2”). How will these six champions now fare when competing in the mental and physical competitions of “The Challenge: USA”?
In the season premiere, each player is given $1,000 to start their individual challenge accounts, and in order to increase their prize money they will have to win challenges or eliminate their opponents. In each episode, a random algorithm pairs contestants against each other, which will make it tougher for strong alliances to form. At the end of the season, one person will win the $500,000 grand prize and earn the title of Challenge Champion.
SEE ‘Big Brother’ winners list: All seasons, plus spin-offs
Keep refreshing/reloading this “Big Brother 23” live blog for the most recent updates.
9:35 p.m. — T.J. introduces us to this new “Challenge” franchise and we see the members of various reality shows talking trash about each other. The game takes place in Argentina with “Survivor,” “Big Brother,” The Amazing Race” and “Love Island” alum. Tyson has won “Survivor” but now he wants to win every challenge until the end. Tiffany won America’s Favorite Player on “Big Brother” and thinks she can mastermind her way through this game. Angela was known for being “cold” and “ruthless” on “Big Brother,” and she plans to be the same here. Danny is a former NFL player from “Survivor” and ready to stab anyone in the back to progress. Cayla is from “The Amazing Race” and hopes to keep a low profile in the beginning and beast mode her way through the end. Xavier won “Big Brother” and four members of The Cookout are in this competition. Xavier says they’ll look out for each other, but not to the same degree as we saw last summer.
9:40 p.m. — Kyland gets giddy when T.J. walks out and welcomes everyone to “The Challenge: USA.” T.J. says he sees a lot of people who know how to play games. In this game they’ll face challenges and eliminations much harder than anything they’ve faced before. Everyone starts off with $1,000 in their account, but they’ll need $5,000 to make T.J.’s final. To earn money they have to win a challenge or win an elimination. With the rules out of the way, the challengers enter their new house and get to know each other.
9:45 p.m. — It’s fascinating to see the various familiar faces in the house. Derek from “Big Brother” is intimidated by all the athletes and plans to use his social game. The most interesting player right now is Alyssa, who plans to get revenge on all of the Cookout alliance from last summer, most importantly, Xavier, who was her closest ally. Xavier still thinks Alyssa will be his strongest alliance in this Challenge house, but he has no idea Alyssa is blood thirsty and will stop at nothing to take him out. Drama!
9:50 p.m. — Cashel and Kyra have not spoken since they broke up on “Love Island.” Things are super awkward for these “Love Island” people because it was more than a game show they were on. They’ve literally gone through breakups with people in this house. “The Amazing Race” alum are forming alliances, particularly James and Leo, who are very observant. There are only four “TAR” alum in the house so they hope to infiltrate a larger alliance and stay under the radar. Meanwhile, Sarah from “Survivor” says this game is already over and they should just write her a check. Domenick says it’s his turn and “Survivor” players are best equipped for this game. There are a lot of egos in the house! The first meltdown is from Shannon (“Love Island”) who is intimidated by the environment and is already sore after doing a few pushups. She better get it together!
10:02 p.m. — T.J. announces they’ll be playing in co-ed pairs and challengers can pick their own partners. After everyone is paired up, T.J. introduces “Down to Do the Math.” Two teams at a time will start on the roof of a 22-story building. They must repel down the building while solving equations that give them answers they need to submit in a box at the bottom. If they are wrong they have to run up 22 flights of stairs and do it again. The losers will go straight into the arena for possible elimination. First up is Kyland & Azah vs. Cashel & Kyra. The “BB” duo is definitely faster, but can they do the math? Did I just hear Kyland say 100 divided by 2 was 95? This might not end well. Indeed, Kyland and Azah have the wrong code. After three failed attempts they have to climb back up the stairs and go again. Meanwhile, Cashel & Kyra finish on their first try. Slow and steady won this race.
10:10 p.m. — Following their second repel, Kyland & Azah succeed, but Azah passes out. She needs some medical attention, but she’s fine. I wouldn’t want to run a final with her though if she can’t even complete the first challenge! In the next round Ben & Alyssa take on James & Shannon. James & Shannon finish first, but both teams are correct on their first attempt. I love that Leo (“The Amazing Race”) and Tiffany (“Big Brother”) are paired up. Both are two of my favorite players from their respective shows. I hope they can last. They’re off to a good start! They finished this challenge on their first attempt and are in contention for the win. We’ll have to see what the times are.
10:22 p.m. — As of now, Kyland & Azah are the only team that had to run twice, which means they’re most certainly in last place. Then David (“Big Brother”) & Cayla (“The Amazing Race”) get their first two attempts at the code wrong. Will they have to run up 22 flights of stairs and do this again? No, Cayla figures out the math and they complete the code on their third and final attempt. It looks like Azah & Kyland will be headed to the arena. The top three teams were Danny & Shan, Tyler & Angela and Desi & Cinco, but the one team to get it done the fastest is Angela & Tyson. Angela & Tyson are safe from elimination and receive $5,000 each. As the winning team, they will also decide which team will face Azah & Kyland in the arena.
10:33 p.m. — Alyssa is no fan of Kyland & Azah, but she says she’s not ready for “BB” players to go home yet, so she and Xavier try to divert Tyler & Angela away from more BB players. Azah & Kyland say they would prefer to go up against James & Shannon and Tyler & Angela seem willing to do what they want. “Love Island” and “The Amazing Race” are the smallest alliance groups so it would keep the least amount of blood on their hands. Next, the sun goes down and everyone heads out for a night of partying. James realizes he must go into overdrive to protect himself and Shannon from going into the arena.
10:45 p.m. — T.J. welcomes everyone to the arena for the first time. He introduces Kyland & Azah and then asks Angela & Tyler who they will send in to compete. They name Cely and Javonny. Surprising? Yes! Why were they named? We see a playback of James working the house the day prior and convincing people to keep him and Shannon out of the arena. He has social skills! Good on you, James!
10:50 p.m. — The teams will play “Knot So Fast.” The teams will have 250 feet of rope connected to their back, twisting and tangling it inside of a pyramid. Next, they’ll have to go into their competitor’s pyramid and be the first ones to unravel the rope. As a “Challenge” fan, I’ve seen this competition a lot. I have to say these two teams are two of the worst I’ve seen completing it. It’s hard to say how this will go, but neither team is doing a good job.
10:59 p.m. — Time expires and the competitors move on to phase two of this challenge. They’re working to untangle the other team’s rope as fast as possible. It looks grueling, but eventually Azah & Kyland prevail. Javonny & Cely are the first team eliminated from “The Challenge: USA.” Azah & Kyland will bank their money and they now have $2,000 each. T.J. then reveals a board will randomly assign partners for the upcoming weeks at random. Teams can never be the same twice. That should make things interesting! That’s a wrap for “The Challenge: USA” premiere.
See our fascinating mix of chats with stars like Elle Fanning (‘The Great’), Christina Ricci (‘Yellowjackets’), Renee Zellweger (‘The Thing About Pam’), James Carden (‘Late Late Show’), Tom Hiddleston (‘Loki’), Amy Poehler (‘Lucy and Desi’), Dave Franco (‘The Afterparty) and scores of Hollywood’s leading costume designers, TV showrunners, cinematographers, production designers and other gifted artisans.
Watch our lively chats with Lee Jung-jae (“Squid Game”) and over 500 more performers, showrunners and crafts people, including the most recent…
Join the lively discussion in Gold Derby’s famous forums monitored closely by Hollywood chiefs. Share your views!
Here’s how to make your predictions at Gold Derby and join the fun.
Is ‘Titanic’ still the king of the world? On this week’s episode of Oscars Playback, experts Joyce Eng and Christopher Rosen look back on the biggest Academy Awards ever, when James Cameron ruled and Matt and Ben were mere newcomers.
Gold Derby is a part of Penske Media Corporation. © 2022 Gold Derby Media, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Deadline Media