The Challenge Ride or Dies Episode 5 Recap: 10 Biggest Takeaways

The 5th Episode of The Challenge Ride or Dies 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 10 Biggest moments/takeaways from the fifth episode.

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


Opening the episode with a pool party is a great choice. It livens up the vibes, brings old-school Challenge energy, and allows you to highlight relationships in the house, from showmances to friendships. We saw more of Nelson & Olivia, Fessy & Colleen, Laurel & Horacio, and then a new fling emerged with Bananas & Moriah.

Bananas looks at rookie ladies the same way Leonardo DiCaprio views women under 25 years old. Moriah’s confessional about Bananas killed me; she essentially said: “Yeah, he ain’t the cutest, but I let him hit because he’s goofy.”

9 Hot Topic Emo Night

The house having a “Rawr XD” 2000s Emo night was hilarious and worth it for the looks alone.
Although, I wish we had gotten more partying and less of Jay & Jakk’s song because, boy, did that song stink.

8 Burger King

Anyone who has read my blogs over the years knows that I love when daily challenges have guaranteed cash prizes and sponsorships. Has Burger King gone downhill in recent years? Yes. But Chicken Fries are still awesome. The Value Onion Rings are incredibly underrated. I enjoy the carbonation on their soda machines. More than anything, I love watching these Reality Stars with immaculate bodies housing Whoppers while wearing paper crowns. Thank you, BK.

7 Grueling Daily

  • Swimming has never been Laurel’s strong suit, yet she’s so good at everything that she was still 2nd or 3rd overall among women during this daily. Laurel looked Scandinavian during the row as well. I got to be honest; Jakk underperformed and held them back in this daily.
  • Nurys & Nelson and Amber & Chauncey had woefully bad performances.
  • Jordan destroying the swim and finding a way to row the boat with only one hand proves why he’s truly one of the greatest ever to play.
  • Olivia died during the swim but killed the rowing; meanwhile, Horacio was the opposite.
  • Veronica’s performance did not reflect well for those on The Challenge All-Stars franchise considering she was winning quite a bit on that show.
  • Fessy destroyed the swim.
  • Moriah & Nany not comprehending how to row their boats had me dying laughing. Fessy is terrible at communication — I appreciate that he didn’t yell or get mad at Moriah.
  • Tori & Devin excelled the entire daily challenge, although I wasn’t a fan of him yelling at her so aggressively near the end.
  • Kim & Colleen performed admirably, and Kim looked like a Winklevoss twin when rowing.
  • Michele and Jay killed that daily challenge from start to finish. They never looked back from when Michele took the lead in the swim. Jay’s two daily challenge wins are now this and the min-final from Double Agents. It’s only two wins, but they are quality wins. Meanwhile, Michele outswam Laurel, Tori, Kaycee, and Nany, along with rookie beasts Moriah and Olivia. Beating those players in a puzzle is one thing; for Michel to outperform them physically is another.

6 Potentially The Worst Nominations Ever

There’s no other way to slice it; Michele & Jay’s elimination nominations were catastrophically bad.

Trying to play the middle is not a terrible idea if you are somewhere in the middle, like Nelson was last week. The problem is Jay was associated with Johnny & Horacio from Day 1. Then Week 2, he got nominated alongside them by Bananas, where the main goal was to divide their alliance and draw a more defined line in the sand for the whole house to be against them.

Not striking back and nominating Bananas & Nany is criminal. I know Michele is friends with Nany outside the house, but if their bond wasn’t strong enough to save her when the entire house is available, how can you expect Bananas to keep them safe when pretty soon the nominations are going to be 4 out of 7 teams? Not only that, it’s Johnny Bananas. Bananas has sold many people up the river in the past, including his Ride or Die, Nany. Typically, the only people Bananas does stay loyal to (Leroy, Kyle, etc.) are those he knows he can beat in a Final. There’s no real benefit to aligning with them, and the fact they did not strike a deal with them before the nominations is even more ludicrous! Going to the ends of the Earth for an IOU from Bananas is like investing your life savings into a second Fyre Festival.


Now, nominating Laurel & Jakk when Jay and Jakk have formed a legitimately strong bond and made everyone listen to their terrible is bonkers. I understand Michele thought Laurel could be a potential threat; however, to nominate her when she’s a “potential threat” rather than a team who has already nominated you is absurd. If you want an IOU, don’t nominate Laurel; she’ll know Jakk and Jay’s relationship is legit. At the very least, have a conversation with Laurel beforehand. You don’t always have to be best friends to have a working alliance, which is weird because you would think Survivor players would know that. Jay looks untrustworthy by throwing Jakk under the bus, and the rest of their nominations felt phoned in.

By nominating Colleen & Kim and Darrell & Veronica, you give all the other teams an easy out in the draw. And nominating Jordan & Aneesa gets Tori on their bad sides without even the potential of her going in. It’s a clusterfuck on all levels. Jay & Michele made Nelson & Nurys look like Einstein and Hawking. They had the chance to come out of this intense daily challenge looking strong; instead, their nominations had them looking scared and weak.

5 What Should Jay & Michele Have Done?

Jay & Michele NEEDED to make a big move against the strongest teams because it would have proved to those they didn’t nominate that they had their back and that going forward, we collectively can’t play scared.

First, let’s make a list like Laurel would and draw out Jay & Michele’s allegiances.

Jay has strong/solid ties to Nelson, Fessy, Horacio/Olivia, and Jakk. Michele is attached to Amber B & Chauncey. Let’s take those five teams off the table because they’re allies. You should also not nominate Colleen/Kim or Darrell/Veronica, as all the teams in the Draw would toss them in, and you need to ensure one of the stronger/more aligned teams gets taken out.

Then take a page out of Bananas book and create the nominations that will test friendships the most. First, nominate Bananas & Nany. Who is Bananas #1 guy? It’s Devin. You nominate Devin & Tori. Who is Tori’s #1 girl? It’s Aneesa and her ex-fiance Jordan; nominate them as well. What team do you send directly into elimination? Bananas & Nany’s #1 girl. Kaycee and her brother. Forcing a Draw where Devin might have to throw Bananas under the bus or Bananas goes for Jordan would be good television. It would create more conflict in the house and guarantee that either a power player or power duo gets removed. While Jay & Michele would have strong teams coming after them in the weeks after, they would also have more teams willing to fight for them. Rather, they come out of this week as the easy vote for any team in the game.


Watching the regret on Jay & Michele’s faces during the interrogation was brutal. From Veronica clowning Jay & Michele’s nominations, to Jordan calling them untrustworthy, to Colleen & Kim being aloof, and then you had Laurel & Jakk bringing down the hammer with silence. Laurel asking if they were going to ask a question after a couple of minutes of their rambling had my jaw dropped. The aftermath was even better.

Jakk saying: “I’ve never gotten over anything anyone has ever done to me,” is a level of petty that I relate to and aspire to be.

The conversation between Laurel & Michele was a sight to be seen. Laurel was so intense and direct that it didn’t compute with the way Michele is used to playing on Survivor.

3 Veronica Will Always Be a Reality TV Character

The concept of Veronica & Darrell saving Colleen & Kim, as they are likely to be the two teams consistently in the Draw, was clever, especially when Aneesa had not been straightforward in cutting a deal with her. At the elimination, Veronica pulled the Safe dagger and said explicitly THAT in front of the entire crowd to put everyone on their toes, only to save Jordan/Aneesa. It was such an unnecessarily messy move, yet, Veronica knows this is a TV show; she knows she & Darrell are not on a successful path, so she might as well have a little fun.

2 Laurel & Jakk vs. Colleen & Kim

Having an elimination with climbing and requiring Laurel to get a check from TJ before he blows the horn felt like they were setting up for a sequel of War of the Worlds 2. The comp was a perfect “Ride or Die” elimination as it required communication, and Kim & Laurel each had their own strategies.

Laurel took over for her and Jakk, and while she was a bit firm/aggressive, ultimately, she guided them to victory. After the win, Laurel looked like a proud mom, so happy for Jakk to get his first elimination win and the feeling of achievement.

My big wonder watching this elimination was whether Kim & Colleen were allowed to speak to each other in German during the comp. We only saw them speak in English, which I feel is a big handicap. Eliminations are hectic enough; translating colors and symbols and relaying them quickly in a non-native language is 10x harder. Kim & Colleen were such a delight the entire season. Kim was incredibly competent physically, and my God, Colleen looked stunning from her confessionals to in the pool to whatever. Even though I’m sad to see them go, at least we won’t have to deal with them getting nominated every week anymore.

1 Laurel Stucky: The Elimination Queen

With this elimination, Laurel is a career 10–2 eliminations, tying Wes for the greatest elimination record through 12 eliminations, and is now the third woman in Challenge history to achieve 10 wins. Unless Kam ever returns, it’s hard to imagine a woman hitting 10 eliminations wins anytime soon. It was a significant feat, and Laurel should be proud.



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Allan Aguirre

26 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.