After many weeks of gameplay and 30 deactivated agents, only 10 seconds separated the two new Challenge champions and the second-place finalists in a photo finish for the ages. So which Spies, Lies and Allies man and woman came out on top, and which lost out on a huge cash prize by only a hair?
The second part of the Season 37 finale picked up with the newly formed Purple and Orange Cells battling for first-place finishes. TJ warned the remaining eight finalists that whichever team completed the first day in second place would face a penalty, and after free dives that left Nelson breathless, marches up mountainsides with huge missiles and beans-in-a-can dinners that preceded a sleepover in a cave, Orange Cell — which struggled to keep up — discovered just how punitive the consequence would be.
TJ told Kyle, Nelson, Nany and Kaycee that only one man and one woman from their team would advance and that whichever man and woman lost the looming game of “Back Up Off Me” would immediately go home.
Kyle, who said he’d been fighting to give his baby-on-the-way a comfortable life with his winnings, shocked the cast when he sent home Nelson, an odds-on favorite in physical elimination rounds. But the real show came when newly confirmed couple Kaycee and Nany squared off, leaving nearly the entire cast in tears.
“Just last night, we were talking about crossing the finish line together,” Nany said. “Now we’re going head-to-head in this elimination. It’s crazy how this game works.”
Kaycee, who struggled not to cry, eventually bounced her girlfriend from the game in a moment that even the typically stone-faced CT called “wicked sad.” But Nany said the real prize came from her progression as Kaycee’s better half.
“Kaycee has definitely changed my life,” Nany said. “I’m confident in who I am as a person…I’d never even held hands with a girl in public. I’ve never been open about any of that.”
Kaycee, even more determined to win, discovered her ugly victory came coupled with an upside: As victors, she and Kyle got to choose new partners with whom they’d complete the last leg of the final mission. Kaycee picked CT, Kyle picked Tori and Devin and Emy — the only duo that had previously worked together — formed the final pair as last man and woman standing.
And though Emy said she and Devin were certainly at a deficit, she was determined to press forward.
“I feel a lot of pressure because every person here ran previous finals,” Emy said. “[But] I want to make my family proud…I cannot stop. I’m not allowed to stop.”
Sadly, her partner did need to stop…a whole bunch. During the game’s last challenge, players had to race up a mountainside, memorize a 20-digit code, and race back down the mountain to unlock the million-dollar prize inside a safe. And Devin, who blew his fellow competitors away with his puzzle acumen, conversely struggled during the physically taxing trek.
“I’ve always been the only thing standing in the way of becoming a Challenge champion,” Devin said. “It is never anybody else. I have adapted. I have transformed.”
The transformation would only amount to a third-place finish, though, and the ultimate horse race boiled down to Team CT and Kaycee and Team Kyle and Tori, which both barreled down the mountain like bats out of hell. And Tori, who’d played her best game in ages, said it was about time her efforts paid off.
“I’ve made countless mistakes in front of millions of people,” Tori said. “I feel like I deserve a win.”
Sadly, though, she and Kyle would ultimately lose by only 10 seconds, as CT took home his long-awaited back-to-back win and Kaycee earned her first Challenge victory, a redemption of sorts after an injury knocked her out of the Double Agents finale.
And while the victors were given the choice to keep the winnings all to themselves, they ultimately awarded each of their fellow finalists $50,000, leaving themselves with $400,000 apiece.
“Everybody’s happy, everybody goes home with something — it’s a good day,” CT said.
What did you think of the Season 37 finale? Share your thoughts, and don’t miss the reunion next Wednesday at 8/7c.