The first episode of The Challenge: Double Agents has aired, giving viewers a look at the season ahead. It’s already involved plenty of entertaining moments and, of course, scheming within the house.
The premiere brought with it the first challenge event which produced a male and female winner. That was followed by each competitor pairing up with a teammate and then voting to determine who went into elimination.
When all was said and done, the first elimination took place, sending a veteran home early due to a rookie’s impressive debut.
Spoilers follow in this post, so be warned for those who have yet to watch the first episode.
First elimination features rookie vs. veteran
In the first elimination of The Challenge: Double Agents, power moves were in full effect. The household members each voted individually in secret, but most were on the same page. They ended up voting to send in the veteran pair of Chris “CT” Tamburello and Ashley Mitchell.
Both Ashley and CT are former winners of the show, with CT winning it three times and Ashley twice. So it made sense that most of the other players would want them gone early.
As for who their opponents would be in elimination, the top performers from the first challenge of the season got to decide that. Aneesa and Fessy were those top performers, so they made a power move of their own. They selected the pair of Wes Bergmann and Natalie Anderson from Survivor to go into elimination.
However, it was revealed by host TJ Lavin that it was a women’s elimination day. That meant that Wes and CT were seemingly safe from having to go head-to-head. The veteran Ashley would face the rookie, Natalie.
Despite being a rookie, Natalie is a former Survivor winner and had an impressive debut. She ousted the two-time champion during their elimination event. It involved moving across a flaming pole while bound by the wrists and ankles. Players had to use their body weight to swing and move across the pole.
The win gave Natalie the first Gold Skull of the season. She’s qualified to compete in the final if she gets there. She is also able to choose to switch out Wes for another male partner besides Fessy, if she wants.
Veteran reacts to early exit from Season 36
Once she was eliminated, Ashley Mitchell clearly wasn’t happy about being sent in. She talked about how she thought people there were her friends, but it seems maybe they weren’t. However, she didn’t really stick around and yell at the rest of the cast like in previous eliminations. She just mentioned that in a confessional interview on the side before the episode ended.
Back on social media, various cast members posted tweets or Instagram posts along with the premiere episode. That included Ashley, who shared an Instagram post about her early exit from The Challenge: Double Agents.
“Well, I gave it my best to an absolute reality competition beast. CONGRATS @natalieeand! It was an honor to compete against such a gracious, humble, and generous human,” Ashley said in a post which included a photo of herself in Challenge gear.
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Ashley is still the second-highest all-time earner when it comes to The Challenge, with winnings that total over a million dollars. Only Challenge G.O.A.T. Johnny Bananas ranks ahead of her.
Meanwhile, her early exit seems to set the tone for a season where getting rid of tough competitors will be a weekly agenda. It also shows just how strong some of the rookie competitors are, including the former Survivor winner, Natalie Anderson.
The Challenge: Double Agents airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on MTV.