Hi guys. Epic back for another segment of Epic Analyzes, an ongoing series of analysis by me towards certain topics surrounding the Total Drama franchise. Today I'll be discussing the topic of the RR finale, the latest chronological topic worth talking about. Specifically I'll be going over the confirmed fact that the canon final three of the Police Cadets, the Surfer Dudes, and the Ice Dancers.
In fact, if you didn't already know, this final 3 almost didn't happen at all. Before this there was actually already TWO other Final 3s that COULD have happened. Besides the 3 teams we got, the two other ones that could've made finale were the Sisters and Best Friends.
Finale #1: The Best Friends vs The Sisters vs The Ice Dancers
Finale #2: The Sisters vs The Police Cadets vs The Ice Dancers
In this blog I will discuss how Finale #1 and Finale #2 probably came to be. Afterwards, I'll go over the Best Friends and Sisters separately and say how those two teams in particular had went through being selected over the Police Cadets (one finale) & Surfer Dudes (all finales). The way I'll go over how these finales is happened is by going over key episodes that lead to eliminations of certain teams and also episodes that hint at these particular finales. And since the canon finale we ended up having was confirmed as last minute, it makes sense for me to rearrange the lines and roles certain teams played by other teams. It wouldn't make sense for them to just start coming with new and inventive fresh ideas out of the blue. For example, no matter what somebody has to dislocate their arm in the finale. It's all opinionated, but my results are quite shocking.
Finale #1: Carrie & Devin vs Emma & Kitty vs Jacques & Josee
The first thing worth noting about this finale is that neither the Cadets nor the Surfer Dudes were going to make finale at first. This was after all the first choice they went for and it's kind of astonishing that they're first idea didn't have either of the final 2 to begin with.
The first episode worth glossing over is Bahamarama. In order for this finale to make any sense, the Surfers need to be eliminated in Ca-Noodling, and Last Tango in Buenos Aires needs to remain a non-elimination episode but also not include any medical evacuation of Carrie & Devin. From here the Police Cadets need to be eliminated in Bahamarama like I've mentioned so I better go over that episode.
First of all instead of the Surfer Dudes, the Best Friends must take their place in this final 4 obviously. And since they went through multiple finales, it's safe to assume the half a minute shot of the Ice Dancers, Sisters, and Police Cadets all racing each other to the carpet fighting for elimination was probably easy to stick to so they don't complicate themselves, with the canon result of course being the Sisters ending up being eliminated.
These three teams were also notable in struggling at the challenge in some way. The Sisters got slowed down by Kitty getting trapped under a rock, The Ice Dancers got slowed down by Josee's claustrophobia plus her lack of oxygen, and the Police Cadets get slowed down by MacArthur helping Josee and sharing an oxygen tank with her. And I firmly believe this same thing was going to happen in all three finales. The reason I know this is that the real Bahamarama involved the Surfers finishing the botch or watch much sooner and getting first place long before everyone else. The huge gap between the first place team and the Bottom 3 is so notable for that episode that it had to have always been like this.
So let's assume the Best Friends have no problem whatsoever with the searching for buried treasure botch or watch. Carrie in particular would be the one doing the botch or watch since Devin had the emu the previous episode. She'd have no issue due to the other teams being slowed down and would then pick up Devin and motorboat him right to the shore. The Best Friends would easily get first place and reach the finale.
The bottom 3 teams in all three versions, as I've established, are the Ice Dancers, Cadets, and Sisters. Mostly things would remain the same except for the HUGE turn of events that the Police Cadets are eliminated. Now the only way for the Ice Dancers to get out of the sticky situation they're in is by Josee having some kind of external force to help her out of the tight spot she's in and her 0% oxygen. MacArthur thus needs to be the one who saves Josee because a diver being sent in was already established to mean they'd be out of the race. I firmly believe MacArthur was always going to be the one who saves Josee. Otherwise there'd be no point for them to include the element that divers being sent in meant teams would be cut from the race, especially since the Sisters only weren't making the finale in the canon version where they simply come in last and it wasn't by a diver, and the Ice Dancers were always going to be in the final 3 as well.
So ok, MacArthur saves Josee's life and saves her from being out, while Kitty tries her best to escape from being trapped under a rock. The Cadets, Ice Dancers, and Sisters all reach their partners with their underwater treasure roughly the same time and race to the carpet. The only difference, and it's a big one, is that the Police Cadets are the ones who end up being eliminated instead of the Sisters. Similar to MacArthur saving Josee's life, I think Josee was always destined to fling a rock at MacArthur's face and make her fall over and there's one key reason.
In the canon version of the episode:
- Josee flings the rock at MacArthur and knocks her over.
- The Ice Dancers get much farther in the lead as the Sisters stop to look at an injured MacArthur.
- Sanders picks up MacArthur while the Sisters race with the Police Cadets again and catch up to the Ice Dancers.
- The Sisters get eliminated.
The last two I mentioned are worth noting. It's a little confusing that the Cadets and Sisters spend a good 5-10 seconds not running while the objectively most athletically fit team is far ahead yet the three teams are still on par and at equal risk of being eliminated. Plus in this version the Cadets end up eliminated, by the Ice Dancers too. So in this case it especially wouldn't add up for the Cadets to get struck by them, catch up, and then just so happen to be eliminated. Otherwise what's the point of them making Josee do that in the first place? It makes sense in the canon version for MacArthur to get knocked to the ground yet her team to still catch up to their opponents because the following episode the Cadets managed to defeat the Ice Dancers in the end anyway. So for the Cadets being eliminated in this episode to work, Josee needs to knock her to the ground AND get her eliminated by doing so because otherwise there'd be no point to it to begin with. It's just like Shawshank Ridonc-tion. Josee knocks the Cadets out of a raft they were using and it cuts to the Ice Dancers easily beating them at the challenge. So again, here it doesn't matter for the three teams to all be on par with each other because then there's no point to MacArthur being knocked to the ground. So as the Best Friends take first, the Ice Dancers take second. This also adds up to why the Sisters took precious time in just staring at MacArthur being on the ground to begin with.
As a result, the Cadets and Sisters race to the carpet of completion, with the Sisters narrowly surviving over the Cadets. Another reason this makes sense is because, regardless of which Final 3 we end up getting, MacArthur runs over to Josee and yells "How could you do that?? I saved your life!!" In the canon version this line is followed after her simply complimenting Sanders' physical prowess yet taking a break to yell at the Ice Dancers. Them also standing where they are just ten or so feet away from the carpet just to pose makes more sense if it's after the Cadets getting last place.Let's also not forget at the beginning of the episode, when the Ice Dancers try to book the last three teams at the back of a plane only for the Cadets and the other two teams to be there before them, MacArthur delivering the line "Ice guys do finish last." This line is really interesting if the episode ends with the Cadets being eliminated. MacArthur's team loses simply by being nice to another team so the irony there makes sense. Her using the "finish last" part also makes sense ironically because the Cadets "finish last".
And finally, the line Josee delivers "Just because she went soft doesn't mean I have to" fits in much more if it's relating to the Cadets being eliminated. And just to prove my point further, let's remember Josee's line all the way in Down and Outback; "I need to be the one who makes them lose." Foreshadowing?
A Million Ways to Lose a Million Dollars
With the Cadets out of the race, we're down to the Final 3. Now since the Surfer Dudes were confirmed as last minute finale members, one of the Final 3 teams need to be in their place. It can't be the Ice Dancers because they are in the finale no matter what so that just leaves the other two teams. But in this case, the Best Friends need to be the Surfer-type team for reasons I'll get to in a moment. And although the Ice Dancers reach the finale no matter what, they need to get 3rd place in every version too. In this case, they need to be out halfway through the episode because they've taken out their worst enemies who also happen to be one of the main protagonists of the season, and also do so in an underhanded way. It would therefore make more sense for them to commit that action to their biggest offenders yet still be rewarded with getting to be in the final 2 for being dishonest and betraying the Cadets. Meanwhile they need a new foil for them in place of the Cadets. Enter the Sisters who had a notable recurring conflict with them in the last few episodes. Thus the Sisters are the team to play a Cadet-type role. This is why I put Best Friends as the Surfers because they're simply too independent in the finale compared to the other two. Now of course lines need to be rearranged as would be expected. I doubt it would make sense for Emma to be complaining about how paddling is the only physical activity where you can't use your glutes.
The Best Friends would successfully get first place at the halfway mark and land a spot in the final 2 while the Ice Dancers and Sisters get slowed down. The Sisters would almost beat them but would have to have losed their tip. The wind would fly it into a sewer. I assume then that Kitty would try to get it out since she's more prone in getting herself stuck into things without thinking of the negatives. Kitty would most likely say the "I think we're done" line while Emma screams they aren't, bending her arm down the sewer and dislocating it, having to be carried by her sister. This would make sense as Emma had been distracted for a few episodes by Noah so maybe it would add up for her to prove she actually is very useful, similar to Sanders in this episode.
Why This Wasn't The Final 3
There's two big reasons why this Final 3 wasn't chosen, both of which involve the Cadets. Firstly it's weird for the Ice Dancers to be in the finale over the Cadets. It means that the Ice Dancers would now be considered much better than the Police Cadets and would teach the terrible moral that nice guys DO finish last. The Cadets would miss out on the finale all because MacArthur saved another human beings' life. The show probably assumed that was too dark of something to do, which is why the Cadets and Ice Dancers BOTH make finale in the two versions after this.
The second reason they probably didn't choose this final 3 is the Ice Dancers outlasting the Police Cadets as a whole. The main antagonists of the season end up outlasting their more heroic foil for the first time, which is just weird and has never happened before. I mean, imagine if Gwen failed a dare in I Triple Dog Dare You! and Heather ended up being in the finale over her. Imagine if Courtney won immunity in Top Dog and as a result Beth would be voted off by Duncan as she'd be the only rational option from him after Courtney is immune. Imagine if Heather DIDN'T get first place in Planes, Trains, and Hot Air Mobiles and lost out to Alejandro being in the finale over her. And then there's others such as Scott getting Zoey eliminated, Mal eliminating Zoey, Sugar getting a higher score than Sky at a talent contest, etc. So they recognized that the antagonist of an interaction outlasting the protagonist and being a finalist just wouldn't make sense, as seen with all these other seasons
EXCEPT FOR DUNCAN AND HAROLD OFC.
And that's how the first Final 3 the show came up with would've probably went down in my opinion, based on realism and the fact that the Final 3 they ended up going for is confirmed last minute, meaning lines and roles by characters had to be replaced. This is why I went for outlandish things such as Emma dislocating her arm or the Best Friends getting 1st place twice in a row.
Full Placing Tallies:
1st: The Best Friends
2nd: The Ice Dancers
3rd: The Sisters
4th: The Police Cadets
A Million Ways to Lose a Million Dollars (1)
1st: The Best Friends
2nd: The Sisters
3rd: The Ice Dancers
A Million Ways to Lose a Million Dollars (2)
1st/2nd: The Sisters
1st/2nd: The Best Friends