Challenge Double Agents Player Preview: Amber Martinez
While Asaf was on Are You The One? Season 4, MTV almost went out of their way to mention every show he was on except AYTO. Considering he had been the only AYTO casting since Chuck on Final Reckoning, it seemed like MTV was done casting from the series. It makes sense since AYTO’s ratings are significantly down in recent years, and considering it’s already on MTV, AYTO doesn’t bring many new Challenge viewers. However, the most recent AYTO was a sexual-fluid season that gained critical acclaim. From watching some of that season, MTV picked the person I thought would fit the Challenge the best, Miss Amber Martinez. While other people may have gotten more screen-time, their personality/style may not allow them to blend into the Challenge environment or get them targeted for superficial reasons.
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Amber is a classic/throwback casting. She is cute, fun, and ready to party/mix it up. Her job on this show is to hook-up, create some GIF-able moments, and if she ends up being a good competitor, then she immediately pays back their investment tenfold. My only fear is they stacked this cast with strong females, meaning Amber might on borrowed time. However, if she can last a decent amount of time, I think she might have a more long-term future on this show than some of the girls in the hunt to win the final.
Introducing Amber: As I just mentioned, her original show is Are You The One? Season 8. On this show, the hook-ups were wild and abundant. For the early part, she found herself in a showmance with a girl named Nour. When that fizzled, Amber made her way into a grouping with two men, Justin and Max, where they had a great friendship, would party/vibe together, and even had a threesome. From a casting standpoint, I feel like that’s the energy they are trying to bring, which to me, is what the Challenge used to be about. Abram, Rachel, and Veronica having a threesome after he got eliminated is, to this day, an all-time highlight.
One of my favorite parts about the Amber casting is the fact that she is a Challenge fan. She’s been live-tweeting about the show for a long time and even got into a spat with Ninja Natalie where Ninja threatened to get Amber fired from her job due to Amber’s tweets about her(Ninja is lame and weird). An important tweet to note was last season during the final; Amber said she hated it when players quit (referring to Bayleigh and Melissa). Considering Bayleigh got hurt and Melissa was pregnant, fans jumped on her tweet. If Amber quits or flops this season, those same fans will be waiting for her to fail, which may be an extra incentive to perform her best.
Amber Martinez: 24 Years Old, 5'0.5, 110ish lbs*, ROOKIE
Skills and Physical Strength: Scrolling through her social media, if you go down to the bottom of her Instagram, you get down to her high school days and Amber played softball. When it comes to the Challenge, you always hope it’s something like Track/Cross Country or Swimming, but at least she played sports, versus some past castings. Going through her Twitter, she also mentions working out here and there and wanting to gain weight healthily. It makes sense since Amber is a petite girl, and for both human reasons and the Challenge.
The game may be challenging for her unless she gets a strong partner because, along with Big T and Gabby, Amber is one of the smallest girls in the house. Even then, Big T has two seasons under her belt and friends in the game; meanwhile, Gabby is a professional fitness trainer. Amber needs to prove from the jump that she’s not a lay-up. Being small sometimes has its advantages when partnered with a male if the woman can lift her body-weight. Amanda had great success on Final Reckoning as she was one of the few girls able to lift themselves with upper-body strength.
SSMP (Social, Strategic, Mental, and Political) Game: Polidicking is the meta and the key for Amber, especially since it might be difficult to stand out among this stacked cast of females. The Exes 2 Jenna run where being attached to Zach and being non-threatening got her far into the game is the idealistic route/outcome. Kyle with Cara on Vendettas is a similar example, except Kyle was a much better political and physical player than Jenna. Johanna always did a great job of being well-liked and getting herself far on that basis.
When it comes to the strategic/political side, Amber needs to focus on building friendships before she can play the game. You need a car and a license before you can drive. No clue how she will do with puzzles.
Eliminations & Winning Potential: I think this Red Skull twist is the worst thing to happen to girls like Amber. No matter how well they do in the social/political realm, people will see the girl under 5'1 as their chance at a Red Skull. If Amber can win an elimination or two, she will gain so much respect from me and the fans.
Can Amber win? No. It’s not her fault, it is the fact that people will see her as a Red Skull, and even if she were to finesse her way to the end, I don’t think she’s prepared for what a final throws at you. Regardless, I’m excited for the casting of Amber and think she’s a fun addition to the house.