"The best made plans of mice and men often go astray."
I'm not sure that's an exact quote and I don't know exactly who came up with it, but I've heard it. (And John Steinbeck wrote a book called Of Mice and Men based on this concept.) What I do know is that it describes my plan to follow up BMN Superfan for a second season.
At first, I planned it for September. Then I canceled it in favor of a similar concept called Wear It Out, which was America's Next Top Model and Project Runway mashed-up. Then I decided to start writing about BMN Superfan, and in fact believed so much in the concept that I threw away the Wear It Out post, in which I had cast 10 contestants and named Annie as host.
And now? You unfortunately won't get anything in this regard. Why? When I ran the BMN schedule in my head, I realized that season 2 would begin on July 21 - nearly four weeks ago! To be fair to the concept, I have decided to run the rest of the season without the same kind of comprehensive weekly reports I had written for season 1.
Rather, this will be my first catch-up report, with short recaps of the first four weeks. Maybe I will have a full report next week, although this is not likely, with my work continuing on the various Adobe programs.
The 14 contestants come to Five Counties Stadium, a minor-league baseball stadium in nearby Zebulon, with the first challenges. Two contestants - Adam Brister and Brooke Liptrap - find large-scale trading cards showing Buddy Wayne performing at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. They are then named team captains and pick their teams. Those teams then participate in a relay race in which they find jigsaw puzzle pieces and complete a puzzle resembling the exact picture their captains found earlier. Team Brooke wins, and from the losing team, Javier Sanchez, a car collector from Arizona, is eliminated.
There is no team competition this week. Instead, the remaining 13 take the role of family members and answer trivia questions about their chosen subjects. Three tied with scores of 9 out of 10 and participate in a tie-breaker. Liptrap wins by the closest guess of how many combined wins Buddy Wayne had in all three NASCAR major series (65). Pam Driscoll, charity coordinator and girlfriend of NASCAR driver Kurt Busch, was sent home after a vote of their fellow contestants from among those with the lowest scores.
It's on to Rockingham Speedway for a racing challenge. But, to the teams' surprise, the race is not in a car, but in an infield as team members ride piggyback on each other! (This honors Bryson's love of the Western lifestyle). Bobbington Brandt (pictured) and Meredith MacBills are the winners. The main challenge was to work in teams to create villages similar to those in old Western movies and TV shows. Teams were re-arranged, with Brandt and MacBills as the new captains. The guest judge is Jackie Autry, wife of the late "singing cowboy" Gene Autry. Brandt's team wins, largely because MacBills makes a "spaghetti Western" setting with an actual pizzeria and a poorly-drawn replica of the video game character Mario. Of course, MacBills is sent home for the mistakes.
This turns out to be a double-elimination episode. The challenge was a two-part outdoors task which honors Ralph's love of hunting and fishing. First, contestants shoot a bow and arrow at a target 40 feet away; Jody Lavender, former NASCAR driver, is farthest from the target and is eliminated. Then, the remaining contestants are put in teams of five and asked to design a new boat depicting Ralph, Harvey, and Hambone. The following team members win: Brister, Tim Miller, Doug Scherer, Wayne Vandenlangenberg, and Bellamy Wood. Alecia A. Moore is the second to be sent home, this time by the judges.