Hey guys! GoGoGadget831 here, and welcome to my seasonal review of Total Drama All-Stars! I'm going to be discussing every aspect of the season in these separate categories: Characters, Character Interactions, Episodes, Comedy and Drama, Cameos, Challenges, Continuity, How Realistic The Show Was, and Final Thoughts of the Season. Since I've already done two seasonal reviews of this season before (on a wiki blog almost two years ago and on a deviantart journal last year), I'm going to try and keep this a bit shorter. Alright, without further to do, let's get started on the characters!
1. Lindsay: Lindsay is still one of my favorite contestants in the whole series, but this was not a good season for her. It's like the writers completely forgot about her development in Total Drama Island and Total Drama Action and dumbed her down to pretty severe lengths, although she did have a few funny moments in this episode. I was really sad that she was the first one to go and I'm baffled as to how we never got a Tyler mention.
2. Lightning: Lightning was easily the best source of comic relief this season had to offer. His arrogance and just how dumb he is just cracks me up. He's hilarious and he's a sha-sexy beast. I'm disappointed that we didn't get to see more of him this season, but I think he went out at the right time. Aside from the Jo and Lightning alliance that was never mentioned again, he still managed to have enough good moments this season.
3. Jo: Jo is still my favorite of the Revenge of the Island cast. She was still the same old Jo that I remembered from last season. I still love the killer zingers she gave to all the contestants, like "Apology Brat", "Li-ability", "Count Gwenula", and "Leggy McLatin". Her sweatpants are still beautiful, and I've already written a whole anthem about it in my Saving Private Leechball review. It's such a shame that she didn't make it that far. She had a great rivalry with Heather that was extremely fun to watch in Evil Dread and had the potential to have a good friendship with Duncan and alliance with Gwen, but that didn't happen either. Her time on the show was great while it lasted and I do hope to see her again in the future.
4. Sam: Why was Sam even in this season? The only thing he had going for him was a decent friendship with Sierra, but it only amounted to one line. But he was pretty much there as a lame pain gag. Here's an idea: how about bringing back Brick instead of Sam?! Brick did much more than Sam and made it farther last season. Why not bring him back to have a decent plotline? He could continue having a friendship/rivalry with Jo and continue to show that he's a teamplayer. But no. The writers decided it was much easier to write about Sam than Brick. NOT AN EXCUSE. I don't hate the guy, but his appearance this season was completely pointless. And the way he cheated was way OOC.
5. Heather: Despite not having as much strategy talk and doing that dumb thing with the immunity idol (then again she has short-shorts, so people can easily see it), she's still amazing as she was every season. The main reason? Consistency. Consistency is the keyword. Unlike the other contestants on the show, it's still amazing how the writers manage to keep her consistent throughout the series. Her conflicts with Alejandro and Jo were pretty entertaining and her sarcasm managed to get a whole bunch of chuckles from me. I honestly have nothing bad to say about her, except maybe in the finale when she and Alejandro were reduced to a lovey-dovey couple (but then again, it was kind of cute). With all that said, Heather still manages to be amazing and she still has a spot in my top 5 favorite contestants list.
6. Sierra: I still love Sierra, but I feel that the writers didn't really know what to do with her this season. They focused way too much on the stalker part of her personality to the point that she starts torturing Cameron. Yes, she was a huge stalker of Cody in World Tour, but she also proved to be a great teamplayer with a good heart, devotion, and great talents (like basket-weaving and German dancing). She should have left a bit earlier, as her insanity over Cody was a bit uncomfortable to watch. However, I still love her and I hope she is portrayed much better in the next season she competes in.
7. Duncan: Duncan was pretty tolerable in this season. He definitely redeemed himself in my eyes by blowing up Chris's cottage. Good going, Duncan! Even though it was pretty strange how he tried to get Courtney's attention in a few instances and then it was never mentioned again, he was pretty supportive of his girlfriend and even took a leech for her. I was very confused by their break-up and it was weird that Duncan didn't really have a reaction to it. It was pretty stupid that he kept on mentioning Courtney several times, as it felt that he was using Gwen to make Courtney jealous. But other than that, he didn't annoy me that much. He had some pretty good interactions with Mike, Zoey, and Jo, even though they went nowhere. His identity crisis plotline was pretty entertaining to watch, even though it wasn't super funny. I felt really bad for him when he got arrested ("snugglemuffins!"), but for what we got, I didn't think he was that bad. I wish his interactions with the other characters went somewhere though.
8. Cameron: Despite being one of my least favorite characters of the series, I still like Cameron. I thought he was great in Revenge of the Island, but in this season, the writers really ruined his character. He really didn't have that much going for him this season, aside from Sierra's Camcody fiasco, which turned into a huge disaster for her character, and helping Mike with his problem, which went absolutely nowhere. He also overstayed his welcome for too long. His character was damaged in Zeek and Ye Shall Find when he became more gullible and blindly listened to whatever Mike told him to, which was very out of character for him since he's much smarter than that. Not to mention he leaves on a really bad note by getting injured, trapped in a BUBBLE, and being forced to take the flush in a severely injured state. I think he should have left in Moon Madness itself (there also wasn't really a point in him being switched to the Villains' team, other than being friends with Gwen). He is so much better than this.
9. Alejandro: Alejandro was actually pretty enjoyable to watch this season. Sure, he spent about half of his time walking on his hands without any sort of explanation, but he had several amazing moments this season, like getting out of the robot suit, giving Jose a major beatdown, giving Heather the karma she deserved from last season, and having a pretty entertaining but short-lived conflict with Mal! He was also one of the only characters that didn't get dumbed down to make room for the sinister Mal! He's definitely a great character and it feels refreshing to see some of his strategy this season. Did I mention that he's hotter than ever?
10. Courtney: Okay, let's talk about one of the more controversial characters of the season - Courtney. To be honest, her character in this season started off pretty strong. She is understandably still mad at Gwen for the events of last season and has moved on from Duncan, the guy who broke her heart. Her character was headed in the right direction and had a good sense of maturity to her. She was also having a budding romance with Scott, even though it was incredibly rushed. Nevertheless, I still thought it was kind of cute. She still does have very weird moments, like vowing to get Gwen eliminated in Moon Madness and being all Katie-Sadie-ish with her in You Regatta Be Kidding Me. Those moments were very weird to watch. But I shrugged it off, because aside from those moments, her character was still good and going strong. And then Sundae Muddy Sundae came around. She randomly reverted to her TDA self and betrayed Scott and Gwen with that list with little to no build-up whatsoever. I did not believe that that was the real Courtney I saw in this season. That episode just screamed bad writing. It's sad because her character was in the right direction and she had so much potential to become a better character. Heck, I was even expecting her to make it in the final two. Then, that stupid episode just had to come along and ruin all the great qualities that she had in her. I felt horrible for her when the sharks puked on her in that exclusive clip. She needs to come back, fix up her relationship with Gwen, and get redemption!
11. Gwen: Oh Gwen, what happened to you? What happened to the loner goth girl we knew and loved from Total Drama Island? Yeah...it was really hard for me to enjoy Gwen this season. She felt like a completely different character compared to earlier seasons. There are so many aspects to her personality this season that I have major questions about. Why did she ignore and act so brash to Duncan when he literally did nothing to her (aside from mentioning Courtney a few times)? Why is she desperate to be best friends with Courtney when they were barely even close to begin with? Why is she a part of, as Bigez620 would put it, the trio of friendship finales and macaroni sculptures? This seriously could have been a great season for Gwen after all that she's gone through in the series. But no. Her character was a huge mess. In one episode, she would be so obsessed with teamwork, when in earlier seasons, she could really care less. In another episode, she would BAWL in the confessional about everything in general. In another episode, she would act all mood-swingy and snap at people (Duncan) when they do something that she doesn't approve of. In another episode, she would get all Katie and Sadie-ish with Courtney. In another episode, she would get mad at Courtney for doing something and stop talking to her all together, making her main purpose on the show very pointless. Also, what was up with her hitting Heather in the finale? So yeah, it was really difficult for me to enjoy Gwen this season. And it's really sad, because I loved her in TDI. They need to bring back the old Gwen, but I highly doubt it now that she's a part of the Mike-Zoey-Cameron friendship circle.
12. Scott: Oh my gosh, what a turnaround. I hated this guy in Revenge of the Island. I hated his strategy and I hated the fact that he was a bully to characters like Mike, Zoey, Cameron, Dawn, and B. But in this season, he was HILARIOUS. Sure we still have the Fang gags pretty often, but outside from them, he does a lot of hilarious things. From mistaking a wedge for a wedge of cheese to eating dirt when he's upset, he got a lot of really good laughs. Even some of his pain gags were funny, like being chased by a gang of rabbits to getting his butt bitten by snapping turtles. He also has no clue how to be a good boyfriend, and it's hilarious when he tells Courtney and he's her girlfriend. He's such a strange yet interesting farmboy. I hope he stays this way throughout his time in the series. He was one of the only characters to actually improve in this season.
13. Zoey: Even though I do like Zoey for guilty pleasure, she really irritated me in this season. She went from a Princess Peach-type character who eventually evolved into a Rambo-like character, to a person with only half of Lindsay's brain. I was appalled that it took her so long to figure out that Mal was in control of Mike's body. Another thing that makes me mad is that she NEVER talks to Mike. Instead of talking to Mike, she TATTLES on him in Moon Madness and puts her life at risk to get Mike to save her. No no no! That's not how this is supposed to work! You have to actually communicate relationship and personal aspects with your boyfriend in order to figure out what's going on in their head! Tattling and trying to commit suicide over it does not do any good! Back in Revenge of the Island, she was a nice girl who didn't take nonsense from anyone. But here, she's completely gullible and doesn't pay any attention to all the evil that Mal is doing, even though there's a lot of difference placed right in front of her. Oh, and her god-playing this season was very annoying and only written in for the purpose of putting her in the final two to face off against Mal. She had potential to be a better character, but this season definitely ruined the chances of that happening.
14. Mike: Like Zoey, I do like Mike for guilty pleasure. Even though he didn't irritate me as much as Zoey in this season, he was still used pretty terribly in this season. And no offense to him, but he didn't really deserve to win this season, considering he didn't contribute that much to the season and didn't win any challenges for himself. I was hoping that he'd get more character development outside of his personalities and get to know the real Mike better. But noooo, we need more room for the sinister Mal! And on the topic of Mal, Mal proved to be the worst villain in the series. Yes, even worse than Justin. Aside from getting Alejandro eliminated, all he pretty much did was break stuff, like breaking Sam's game-guy, Sierra's smartphone, Cameron's glasses, Duncan's knife, a whole bunch of boats, and other stuff, he didn't contribute to anything as a villain. And they just had to dumb everyone down to make him look like Satan. It's sad, because the writers could have made him a truly great villain with many evil aspects and strategy. But I'm afraid that didn't happen. Not to mention we got very little backstory on this personality. And don't even make me get started on that stupid reset button. I do like Mike, but there's no denying how offensive the portrayal of MPD was in this season.
15. Chef: Where the heck was Chef in this season? Yes, he had a few scenes dedicated to him in Zeek and Ye Shall Find and in The Final Wreck-ening. But here, we've been seeing much less of him compared to older seasons. In fact, his main highlights were eating all that ice cream in Zeek and Ye Shall Find and seeing him in a parrot costume in The Bold and the Booty-ful and as a mad king in The Final Wreck-ening and that's about it. He barely had any lines, which is sad because Chef is a million times better than Chris!
16. Chris: I don't think prison made Chris as bad as World Tour and Revenge of the Island....it made him TEN TIMES WORSE. Chris was AWFUL in this season. He had no sympathy for the contestants whatsoever. We have Gwen trying to make amends with Courtney and Chris keeps taunting her by calling her evil. Not to mention eliminating her in one of the stupidest eliminations in Total Drama history. And he deserved to have his "cottage" burned down by Duncan. Oh yeah, and he was awful to Ezekiel in the special. Ezekiel has been humiliated enough and yet, Chris still keeps reminding him of horrid memories back in the show, especially the dreaded moments in World Tour. Chris deserves to drown in toxic waste because of that. In the finale, he was at his worst. He let the contestants fly away in those stupid fart balloons, didn't do anything to save him, and got out scot-free. This guy deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison. Chris McClean, rot in h*ll.
So, there you have it folks. The character development of every character in this season. The only characters who managed to stay consistent/improve where Heather, Alejandro, Scott, Jo, Chef, and Lightning. Everyone else was either a mixed bag or plain terrible. Now, let's talk about character interactions.
1. Mike and Zoey: I still like the couple for guilty pleasure and while I've already gotten into full detail about each of their flaws this season and even though they're not the most interesting couple, they still have great chemistry and I loved the part when they had their first kiss. They had a few other sweet interactions and it's good to see that they're still going strong. I hope it stays that way for a long time to come and even though I like them, I don't think I would want them competing again, especially considering all their backlash this season.
2. Courtney and Gwen: Yeah, I have quite a bit to say about this friendship. This was definitely a "fun" one to watch. That gag of Gwen trying to apologize to Courtney and accidentally hurting her with something was very annoying. It's also weird that in Moon Madness, they connect with an opinion about Heather and then Courtney gets mad at her and says that she'd leave her as deer food than save her. Then, they have a truce in Suckers Punched and then in You Regatta Be Kidding Me, they become Katie-Sadie levels of friendship, which is REALLY weird, considering they weren't that close in World Tour. Then, Sundae Muddy Sundae came around and just had to ruin it. I hope they fix their friendship next time.
3. Courtney and Scott: This couple was.....alright. I didn't mind them too much, but the only complaint that I have about this couple was that it was incredibly rushed. It started off with Scott eating from Courtney's face and saying, "You clean up really well," and then Courtney finding a bird that looks exactly like Scott. Their kiss was also a bit too forced, but whatevs. They were pretty cute while they lasted (though I prefer Duncney), but pretty mad about how everything turned out in Sundae Muddy Sundae. I wonder if they'll work things out amongst one another by the time their next season rolls along.
4. Heather and Alejandro: I really enjoyed Heather and Alejandro this season. Their interactions in Heroes vs Villains were pretty funny, especially when the robot kept on trying to make moves on an irritated Heather. It was also funny seeing them act sarcastic towards each other. It was also great seeing Alejandro get his revenge against Heather after last season and reveal his true feelings for her on live TV! I wasn't a big fan of them being reduced to a lovey-dovey couple, but their scenes were really cute and they were pretty much back to their normal selves by the time the island was destroyed :P. I adore Aleheather now and forever.
5. Heather and Jo: This was a very short-lived conflict. They were very entertaining and hilarious in Heroes vs Villains, Evil Dread, and the beginning of Saving Private Leechball. It's a shame that they didn't have more screentime. But it was fun while it lasted.
6. Sierra and Cameron: These two had some good interactions early in the season before Sierra went crazy. This could be funny at times, but it's disappointing because they really could've been good friends. But nope! We just had to have Sierra go insane and torture poor Cameron like he's Cody.
7. Mike, Zoey, and Cameron: It was pretty typical I guess. Not too many changes from season 4, other than the fact that Cameron became more gullible by listening to all that Mal had to say. But other than that, it was good to see that they're still tight after all the crazy happenings this season.
8. Gwen and Cameron: Meh, they're okay as friends (more along the same lines of Gwen and Zoey). But as a couple, NO. Gwent forever! Gwemeron for never!
9. Sam and Sierra: Only one line. Moving on!
10. Lightning and Jo: Wish we could've that Jo and Lightning alliance Jo mentioned in Heroes vs Villains!
11. Duncan and Zoey: I don't really ship them as a couple, but I did like the idea of them having a decent friendship. You had Zoey liking Duncan's soft side and Duncan trying to tell Zoey about Mal. This had the potential to be a good alliance and would have Duncan realizing that having a tough and good side was okay. But that didn't happen either!
12. Duncan and Mike: Okay, we all know that Duncan knew Mal from juvy, but there really could've been more backstory to this. If they had more interactions, they would have a very interesting conflict. I'm afraid that didn't happen!
13. Alejandro/Heather/Jo and Gwen: Mentioned a few times in Saving Private Leechball and never talked about again. Also, what was up with Alejandro flirting with Gwen in Evil Dread? All it did was kind of make me ship Alejandro and Gwen.
14. Duncan and Gwen: Even though Gwuncan is my least favorite couple of the whole show, I'm still dying to know what on earth happened to this couple. These two were all over each other in World Tour and Revenge of the Island. In the beginning of All-Stars, you could tell that they were having problems in their relationship, but there was no real explanation why. Duncan still stood up for Gwen, despite thinking about Courtney a lot, but Gwen's all depressed about being on the Villains' team and about Courtney still getting mad at her. Their break-up was so abrupt and came out of nowhere in Moon Madness. It took Gwen more time to deal with psychpathic Trent in Total Drama Action (5 episodes), but here, they break-up over the course of a millisecond. What is up with that? And on top of that, Gwen still acts sarcastic and hurtful to Duncan, when he cared about her all this time. This was a couple that needed to break-up, but not this way. But oh well. At least it put an end to all the love triangle nonsense.
15. Gwen and Zoey: This friendship was alright and it was nice seeing Gwen interact with the second-generation cast. But sadly, this friendship took away the loner goth girl that I knew and loved in Total Drama Island. Back in season 1, Gwen would never hang out with the friendship circle. But here, mehh. I guess it's okay.
16. Alejandro and Mal: This was definitely a lot of fun to watch! It's also about time someone was actively onto Mal. Even though this was short-lived, it was fun seeing the two of them mess with each other. Wish it had more development though (had a lot of potential in Zeek and Ye Shall Find).
17. Duncan and Courtney: This might sound biased since I'm a huge fan of Duncney, but I would've liked to see Duncan and Courtney interact more this season. You have Duncan trying to get Courtney's attention in Heroes vs Villains, twitching his eye at the thought of Scott and Courtney in Moon Madness, and keeping on mentioning her in the same episode, but that literally led to nothing. Though Courtney's line, "Yeah, you exist. SO WHAT!" was pretty funny, I would've liked to see them interact more, even Duncan trying to apologize to Courtney for his past actions. Sadly, that led to nothing. I wonder how it will turn out in the future though.
18. Jo and Duncan: Had so much potential to be a good friendship/conflict with Duncan liking Jo's killer zingers, but that didn't happen!
As you can clearly see, there were so many great potential for different interactions and subplots, but most of them were either ruined or thrown down the drain. This was a real shame, considering that with this many interactions, this season would have definitely been more investing and hilarious. I'm very disappointed that the writers put in all these great set ups and did absolutely nothing with them. As Alejandro would say, "Pathetic". Alright, now onto the episodes!
1. Heroes vs Villains: GOOD
2. Evil Dread: GOOD
3. Saving Private Leechball: BAD (moderately)
4. Food Fright: MEH
5. Moon Madness: BAD (severely, but it's 'so bad it's good')
6. No One Eggspects The Spanish Opposition: MEH
7. Suckers Punched: GOOD
8. You Regatta Be Kidding Me: MEH (close to bad)
9. Zeek and Ye Shall Find: BAD (#5 on Bottom 5)
10. The Obsta-Kill Kourse: GOOD
11. Sundae Muddy Sundae: BAD (#2 on Bottom 5)
12. The Bold and the Booty-ful: BAD (#4 on Bottom 5)
13. The Final Wreck-ening: BAD (#1 on Bottom 5)
This season had 4 GOOD episodes, 3 MEH episodes, and 6 BAD episodes. Almost half of the season was bad and only about a third of it was good. And let me just say that the good episodes of this season were definitely nowhere near as good as the good episodes in seasons 1-4. Also, the bad stuff this season makes up a lot of the worst things I've ever covered in this series. When the episodes were good, they weren't THAT good. But when the episodes were bad, they were REALLY bad. It's really sad because in seasons 1-4, most of the good episodes were really fantastic and most of the bad episodes weren't THAT bad. The only good episode this season that kept me invested and laughing from start to finish was Evil Dread. None of the other episodes could do that as much, and that is really sad. Let's talk about the comedy and the drama now.
Comedy & Drama:
One major thing that I've really noticed this season was the lack of jokes. And no, I'm not talking about the number of times throughout the season that I laughed. What I mean is is that there really haven't been that many jokes compared to older seasons. Even though Revenge of the Island was lighter on jokes compared to older seasons, it still got a lot of good laughs from me. The thing is, older seasons used to be jam-packed with jokes every second. But this season has a significantly lower amount of jokes. The funniest episode was probably Evil Dread. And even though Moon Madness is funny, it's funny at how bad it is. The content that it has is really terrible. The season is also lacking in the drama department. Yeah, the writers tried to create all these potentially great plotlines, like Mal being a truly threatening villain, Duncan knowing Mal from juvy, and things like that, but most of the drama went nowhere. The writers also had the opportunity to have Mal and Zoey interact more and have Mike have an epic showdown with Mal, but all of that was wasted potential. There were many other storylines that could have been made, like a heated conflict between Heather and Jo, Duncan trying to get Courtney's attention, and so many other possibilities. But everything went nowhere and all landed in a heaping pile of disappointment and wasted potential. Now, let's talk about the cameos.
I really wish this season had more cameos. Izzy's cameo was way too short and I cried when Mal beat her up badly. This had better not be the last we see of Izzy! Ezekiel's cameo was just awful. This was at the point when Feral Zeke got on my last nerve. I felt so sorry for him when Chris sadistically reminded him of how horribly he treated him. At least he was happy in the Fun Zone among the mutants, but at the same time, reminded me that he's never going to go back to his normal self again, which is really depressing. Also, I'm very baffled as to how we never saw him in the finale. Speaking of finales, Owen's balloon cameo was awful, as it was unnecessary cruelty to the contestants courtesy of Chris, but it was funny when he waterskiied in the end. Overall, wasted potential with these cameos. But I will say it was wonderful seeing Blaineley and Bruno again in Lightning's exclusive clip. Now, the challenges.
Overall, the challenges this season were pretty boring. I enjoyed the challenges in Heroes vs Villains, Evil Dread, Suckers Punched, You Regatta Be Kidding Me, and The Obsta-Kill Kourse. But the challenges in Moon Madness, Zeek and Ye Shall Find, Sundae Muddy Sundae, and The Final Wreck-ening were pretty much running from Point A to Point B and nothing much to it. Sadly, none of the challenges stood out in unique ways, which is sad because the writers could have had a lot more fun with these challenges. Now, the continuity.
The continuity/writing for this season was overall some of the worst that I've ever seen. I could not believe how poor the continuity was. Courtney claimed that this was the farthest she's ever gotten in Total Drama, completely ignoring Total Drama Action. Even though she said she was lactose intolerant in Dial M For Merger, she said that she had a strong stomach in Chinese Fake-Out and chowed down a whole bunch of ice cream sandwiches in Basic Straining and yet, in Sundae Muddy Sundae, she couldn't even eat her ice cream (the food in Chinese Fake-Out was grosser imo). Also, Gwen kept on saying that Duncan and Courtney weren't dating when she and Duncan kissed, which is CLEARLY not true. Not to mention calling Sasquatchinakwa a YETI in The Bold and the Booty-ful and referring to Playa Des Losers as "Chris's cottage" (and arguably a mansion)! Yeah, and it was stated in The Obsta-Kill Kourse that Courtney kissed Alejandro! Yeah, when the heck did that ever happen?! Also, how in the heck did Mal find Courtney's chart? Magic powers? Yeah...the continuity this season was bad. It doesn't affect the seasonal rating that much, but this really isn't something that the writers should be doing. Now, to how realistic the season was.
How Realistic The Show Was:
This season actually proved to be even more unrealistic than Revenge of the Island. We get to see all the mutants from Revenge of the Island in No One Eggspects The Spanish Opposition, but that's only one episode. Then, we have the brain scenes. How is it even possible that people can put cameras in Mike's brain?? And the how in the heck is it possible to cure a disorder with little people in your brain? And no, you cannot sink an island with a flipping fracking machine. That breaks every law of physics imaginable. Writers, you can do so much better than this.
Final Thoughts of the Season:
Taking into account everything that's happened this season as well as my personal perferences, this season is the first BAD season of the series. I really wanted to like this season. I really did. But this season had way too many fatal flaws that automatically made it bad to sit through. The plotlines have so many holes and were abandoned, most of the characters were literally just there to die, the comedy and the drama were severely lacking, the season had too many unrealistic moments, several of the challenges were boring, many characters were derailed severely, there weren't enough cameos, and there was so much build-up for such a frustrating experience. There were a few good moments here and there, but for the most part, it was LAME. All of these aspects made up the entire season. From the bad all the way up to the good, overall, this was just a downright inferior season.
With that said, thank you all for watching this season with me, even though this was a really hard one to sit through, and I'll see you all in Season 5.2. GoGoGadget831, out.