The Challenge Battle For a New Champion Episode 7 Recap: 5 Biggest Takeaways

Allan Aguirre
8 min readNov 30, 2023

Apologies, once again you’re not getting a full recap, it’s been a crazy week. I tried my best.

The 7th Episode of The Challenge Battle For a New Champion is in the books. You probably have some thoughts, so let’s compare. Instead of giving a simple summary, I decided to focus on the 5 Biggest moments/takeaways from the 7th Episode.

If you prefer audio/video, my podcast recap can be found above/below.

5 Daily Challenge Standouts

Production 100% thought Big T would lose her elimination against Kaz, as this daily was likely meant to be six teams of three. Due to Big T’s win, we had a single team of four, which hilariously ended up not mattering as Moriah was too afraid to even swing from platform to platform because she didn’t want to risk ruining her $13,000 nose job. As a fan of money and my nose, I don’t blame her. As a fan of this show, I was incredibly disappointed by Moriah in this moment.

Olivia was a clear standout for having enough strength to miss her original dismount, yet she was able to hold herself up, get back to the original side, and take a second attempt where she was successful. Also, Olivia didn’t rebreak her face! Berna and Corey were clear performers, as Corey was too afraid of heights to swing across, and Berna couldn’t figure out which way to place the puzzle pieces without the crowd’s help.

Horacio & Kyland were an absolute super duo when it came to climbing and moving throughout the daily challenge, and Big T did an excellent job communicating for them to get the win. Then they had to decide on what guy was going into elimination.

4 Horacio Needs To Grow Up

Big T & Kyland winning the daily challenge was great for the game as they are two of the outsiders game-wise. Kyland is somewhat part of the U.S. alliance, but he’s also never played with any of them prior, and he’s connected to Melissa. Big T & Kyland took this as a golden opportunity to take a shot at Emanuel, someone who is Melissa’s enemy, not a U.S. player, and is a significant threat in the Final.

The move made sense for all three players, even Horacio. Horacio could have easily pointed his finger at the other two players in terms of blame. Not to mention that even though Emanuel has U.S. allies in the house, the connections aren’t enough to lead to them all gunning after Horacio.

Yet, Horacio struggled mightily with the decision. Emanuel isn’t anywhere close to Horacio’s best friend, and we aren’t even late into this season. Horacio needs to grow up and accept that he’s playing a game. If you’re going to be as strong of a competitor as he is, you’ll have to deal with the responsibility of putting people in elimination. I don’t mind that Horacio isn’t about drama or partying, except if you aren’t going to partake in that part of the show, you must play the game and be part of the experience.

3 Corey Lame’s Disastrous Deliberation

We didn’t see much politicking against men before the deliberation; however, once we were there, Corey was seemingly the only person whose name was in the air. It was shocking, as you’d expect internationals like James and Callum to get voted in next.

The target was on Corey, and instead of Corey trying to sway people by taking aim at another guy in the game, he instead made one of the most cowardly yet cruel moves I’ve ever seen in Challenge history. Corey decided to air out Melissa & Big T by saying all the words he spoke with them were simply a means to feed information to his alliance. For starters, if you’re trying to build trust in an alliance, you don’t do it by displaying that you’re a great liar who can emotionally manipulate people. Secondly, those two were already outsiders — there’s no need to fish information out of them. Third, you are clearly kicking down by going after the two people on the bottom because you’re too afraid to combat anyone who might be on your level or above you.

Importantly, Corey’s deliberation speech was straight-up mean. I’m all about mess and villain behavior on The Challenge. Except when you’re putting an arm around Big T during her coming out party and telling her you can be a support system/second family to her, and then you go around and say it was all for the game… That’s icky. I hate the word icky too. That was it is, though. Corey is someone who stirs the pot and is a good competitor, and I like that when it comes to The Challenge. It’s the fact that Corey doesn’t fully commit to the role he’s trying to play that irks me. Is he this guy trying to play based on building authentic bonds, or is he trying to be a villain? Pick a side and commit; you can’t have it both ways and then get upset when your alliance tosses you in. The worst part is that after everyone voted for Corey, the only two people who didn’t want to the most were Big T & Melissa.

2 The On Paper Match-Up of Emanuel & Corey

Objectively speaking, Corey & Emanuel is the perfect elimination match-up for this phase of the game. If there are no mercenaries, you’re pitting two strong players against each with diametrically opposed skill sets. If it’s a game of agility and coordination, Emanuel is winning. If it’s a size-based elimination, then Corey is winning. Either way, you take one threat in the game who will be tough to face going forward. Additionally, if there is a mercenary, you’re tossing in a strong player who will keep you from losing 10,000 dollars, or a threat is getting taken out.

It’s a win-win move, in theory.

Unfortunately, Devin came in, pulled the free-choice dagger, and decided he would be going after someone in the crowd (and that he didn’t know). So, some behind-the-scenes stuff/rumors: Jessica Brody was hooking up with Devin after getting eliminated from this season, and apparently, she told him to pick Callum as he was mean and played a part in her going into elimination. Now, Devin was likely to pick someone he didn’t know anyway, and James is a big bloke, so he might as well take a shot at a guy who, based on the face tats, Devin had a good shot at beating in a mental competition.

While Devin is not the most intimidating mercenary, he is, without a doubt, a showman and the perfect person to add some chaos. Devin came in hot and brought some real sizzle and personality to a meh episode.

Sidenote: seeing some potential mercenary callouts in the future will be fun. CT coming back and getting a lick back in on Jay for beating him on Total Madness would be fun to watch. Laurel had a deep beef with Michele on Ride or Dies, and maybe they’ll go at it.

1 The Countdown

The elimination was a bunch of counting. The only interesting wrinkles were Callum when he was trying to sabotage Devin and the crowd trying to help Callum count his items. To which I’ll say, if I’m trying to count and the crowd starts speaking over me, I’d get lost.

Devin pulled out the win and extinguished Callum’s game and romance with Michele. I did get a hearty chuckle at Devin feeling bad after the fact that it seemed like everyone enjoyed Callum in the house.

Callum’s loss is a bummer here as it’s another international out of the game, and even worse; it was someone who got picked up thinking they were safe. It would’ve also been great to see Corey/Emanuel in elimination. Next week, it’s likely another women’s elimination, and it looks like we are getting some Ravyn/Melissa drama.

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Allan Aguirre

27 years old. I blog about MTV's the Challenge and will dabble into other subjects occasionally. Follow me on Twitter for the occasional bad joke.