Earlier this week the first episode of Tough Enough season six took place and one contestant’s hopes of earning a WWE contract came to an early end.
From over 11,000 applicants the final 13 were hoping to put on impressive performances in the challenges and do enough to impress the three judges in Daniel Bryan, Hulk Hogan and Paige, as well as impressing the WWE Universe who had the power to save their favourite contestants.
The first episode – entitled ‘Boot Camp or Bust’ – gave an early indication as to what each contestant brings. Granted, it’s early days yet and things will definitely change with nine weeks remaining in the competition but their personalities and traits of each individual were clear from the outset.
The live aspect of the show took place at Full Sail University and we were shown the first set of challenges the competitors were put through by coaches Booker T, Billy Gunn and Lita.
The 13 contestants were taken to the Citrus Bowl in Orlando which played host to WrestleMania XXIV and they had to run the length of the field twice. The first with parachutes and then they had to carry a bag of sand matching their weight and it concluded with each contestant having to sprint to the top row of the Citrus Bowl.
Mixed Martial Artist Tanner Saraceno put on an impressive display in the challenge and he wasn’t afraid to get under the skin of his rivals by reminding them of his success at every opportunity he could find.
For the women, both Amanda Saccomanno and Dianna Dahlgren set the bar early on and they are definitely two to keep an eye on as it will take something special to topple the two of them. Expect them to remain in the show towards the end.
The competitors also had to participate in some in-ring drills which sounded easier than they looked, and once more it was Tanner Saraceno who set the standard and he was definitely this week and will look to capitalise on his success next week.
After some short interviews with some of the contestants on the live stage, the three judges picked out their bottom three.
Daniel Bryan called out Hank Avery Jr. Hulk Hogan called out the popular 18-year-old ‘gator wrestler Zamariah Loupe (who goes by the name ZZ on Tough Enough) whilst Paige called out The Yeti, Joshua Bredl.
The fans votes meant Hank was eliminated from the show, leaving ZZ and Bredl to fight for another week and hope to avoid being in the bottom three.
I believe the elimination was the correct one. From the beginning it was clear that Hank didn’t have a huge personality you would need in the WWE. He had a good look, but there were plenty of stars on Tough Enough who have a look that could succeed.
This elimination will hopefully bring out the best in others and another hopeful to keep your eye on is Patrick Clark Jr. It's clear he has the more passion and knowledge of the business than anybody else in the competition and he has a good look and personality about him which should bode well for his chances of advancing.
Tanner will also be in the running for the contract with his impressive performances in the challenges whilst the female pool is wide open. We haven't seen a lot as of yet but from the first week it's clear both Amanda and Dianna are going to be tough opposition.