The Challenge has featured hundreds of competitors since its inception in 1998. One of its main draws is it features recurring cast members growing up together in a real-life soap opera. It’s rewarding to watch young bucks like Chris “CT” Tamburello and Derrick Kosinski change and mature over time.
But what about the flash in the pan competitors? Some competitors are too entertaining, too athletic, and way too fun to just disappear after one season. In this feature I’m counting down my favorite one-and-done competitors featured on The Challenge. For purposes of historic diversity, I limited myself to choosing only two competitors per season, one man and one woman (it still bums me out to leave Kelly Limp off the list). I gave preference to competitors who lasted through to the final, showed a strong desire to win, had a personality, and otherwise stood out from the pack in some meaningful way. It’s been difficult cutting out competitors like Heather B. Gardner, Mitch Reid, Brittini Sherrod, and Antoine de Bouverie, but I’m happy with my picks. We should have had more time with all of them.
Note: This list originally featured Teck Holmes, but he’s since been featured on The Challenge: All Stars. Adam Kuhn, welcome to the list!
10. Adam Kuhn (Battle of the Exes II, 2015)
Does anyone else remember Adam? Alongside his partner/ex-girlfriend Brittany Baldassari he won three eliminations on Battle of the Exes II before getting sent to Exile (where Johnny “Bananas” Devenanzio eliminated him for good). Adam looks like Superman, but he doesn’t act at all like a shy Clark Kent. During his time on Battle of the Exes II he performed a stripping routine, flipped Brittany upside down for a 69 style dance move, and overall gave off the stench of a type-A asshole. And that’s great. He could easily fill a Wes Bergmann type role, being the obnoxious young gun that brags about his good looks and penchant for winning. Apparently, Adam’s been spending time in Thailand doing some sort of fighting, and he looks lean and mean. Let’s get him back on TV so he can fight for a million bucks.
09. Ellen Cho (Battle of the Sexes, 2003)
I’m tired of fake drama and Twitter battles. Ellen brought none of that back in the early 2000s. In episode one of Battle of the Sexes she said “fuck you guys” to the inner circle and she later told David “Puck” Rainey his televised wedding was “just for show” and called him immature. Ellen never shied away from a fight. She also clawed her way into the inner circle and finished the season second in points behind superwoman Ruthie Alcaide. Ellen’s aggressive cheerleader personality sometimes rubbed people wrong, but she tried to act in her team’s best interest, even when her actions made waves. She’s a tough competitor, and I bet no one else in history has told Coral Smith “kiss my baby ass.” Puck told Ellen he would kick her ass, and Ellen told Coral to kiss hers. That’s legend status.Continue reading “Top Ten: The Challenge One-and-Done Competitors”