The Real Biggest Loser Is the Show Itself
by Ryan Benson
“It’s not just a show, it’s a lifestyle!”
That was the slogan used to promote The Real Biggest Loser during its first season. While that may have been true at one time, reality television has evolved into something much different now.
While I’m sure most of us would love to live like the contestants on The Real Biggest Loser, it doesn’t always work out that way. Sometimes they get fat, or lazy, or addicted to drugs…or all three! And while some of them do make good life choices, others don’t. Some end up dead after being eliminated from the competition.
In fact, there are only two real deaths on the show: those of Jennifer Aniston and Ryan Reynolds. (And neither of their deaths were caused by a lack of food.) But that hasn’t stopped fans from speculating about other possible outcomes. So here are ten things you might not know about The Real Biggest Loser Is the Show Itself…and how they could’ve played out differently!
1. The show’s host, Chris T.
, was originally going to be a fitness trainer on the show. But after getting word that someone died during filming, he frantically called up the network to ask if he needed to worry about his own safety. He was told no, so he agreed to stay on as host of the show. Still, it’s something that has always bothered him ever since.
(And his relationship with the network has never been quite the same, either! It didn’t help that he got into a drunken argument with the president of the network during last year’s Upfronts. His career at the network has been on rocky ground ever since.)
2. The show’s title, The Real Biggest Loser Is the Show Itself, was once intended to be just a clever saying by one of the eliminated contestants.
While it was true at the time that the fatality was due to an overdose of painkillers, many at the network believe that if they had changed the rules of the competition, that maybe the eliminated contestant would’ve still been alive today.
3. The show was originally going to be called Bouncing Back: The Real Biggest Loser, but then network executives decided to allow bodybuilders to compete on the show…and from there, everything spiraled out of control.
Sources & references used in this article:
” America, Let’s Get Real” about Stigmatization–An Analysis of the Opening Sequence of The Biggest Loser by A Mayer, JM Mayer – Journal of Managerial Issues, 2019 – search.proquest.com
Working hard on the outside: a multimodal critical discourse analysis of The Biggest Loser Australia by O Monson, N Donaghue, R Gill – Social Semiotics, 2016 – Taylor & Francis
Edutainment’s Impact on Health Promotion: Viewing The Biggest Loser Through the Social Cognitive Theory by R Mocarski, K Bissell – Health promotion practice, 2016 – journals.sagepub.com
After the after: The Biggest Loser and post-makeover narrative trajectories in digital media by M Hass – Fat Studies, 2017 – Taylor & Francis
The Biggest Loser: The discursive constitution of fatness by ML Silk, J Francombe, F Bachelor – Interactions: Studies in …, 2011 – ingentaconnect.com
Weighing in on NBC’s The Biggest Loser: Governmentality and self-concept on the scale by T Readdy, V Ebbeck – Research quarterly for exercise and sport, 2012 – Taylor & Francis