Upset about his brother's elimination, Joe's desperately missing home. Jeremy advises him to think of his family and use them as motivation to stay on the ranch. Later, the contestants assemble for the first Temptation Challenge of the season. Alison presides over a mouthwatering Chinese food buffet. One excuse for not losing weight is "I don't have time to eat healthy." Jeremy can absolutely attribute a large portion of his physical plight to Chinese food. Alison points out that there are 41,000 Chinese restaurants in the U.S., more than McDonald's, Wendy's and Burger King restaurants combined. This week is Face-Off Week. Each member of the Black Team will face off against a member of the Red Team at the weigh-in. Whoever wins their face-off will earn a point for their team. The losing team has to send one person home. The only strategy to avoid elimination is to control who's facing off with whom, and the person who decides that will be the person who wins the Temptation Challenge.
The Temptation Challenge winner will also earn a two-pound advantage - which they can use as they please, either for themselves or someone else. No one on either team wants to go up against the partners they came to the ranch with. Alison gives the teams five minutes to discuss and eat whatever they will. The Red Team discusses strategy. Roy thinks the two-pound advantage is worth it, but Kimmy insists it's like being an alcoholic and falling off the wagon. Buddy points out someone could eat one fortune cookie, but in the end, no one eats. Alison ushers the Red Team out of the room, and the Black Team takes their place. Jeremy has the idea that someone should eat the lowest-calorie item, the fortune cookie. Most of the women don't want to eat it, thinking it will be harder for them to burn it off, but Cassandra steps up at the last minute. Emily advises her to eat two, just in case the other team had the same strategy.
Cassandra is the only one who ate, so she's the winner, with complete control over the face-offs - and a two-pound advantage! The Red Team takes the moral high road, claiming they did the right thing by not eating. When Alison asks, Cassandra doesn't hesitate to name her match-ups, which are: Roy and Emily, Jeremy and Lauren, Joe and Nancy, Chism and Kim, Mark and Chris, Megan and Buddy, and Gail and Kimmy. Cassandra will face Conda. Cassandra admits she feels better with fierce competition, and she's not worried. For her part, Conda is bracingly confident. That night, in a stunning maneuver, Joe packs his suitcase, telling everyone it's time for him to go home - he has to be with his family. Last week's elimination of Mike was like a nail in his coffin. Almost everyone is sad, but Emily is truly pissed off.
Bob enters the kitchen the next morning, asking, "Where is everybody?" At first, he thinks his team is joking about Joe going home, but they're not. How can Joe walk out in the season of no excuses!? Bob sends his team to the gym, telling them he has a phone call to make - he's not going to let Joe have the last word, and he doesn't want him to think for one second that he's doing the right thing. Nevertheless, Joe stands firm. Meanwhile, Dolvett's got his team in the gym and he's stoked that it's Face-Off Week. He loves competition, and he loves the idea of going up against Bob. Dolvett's psyched by the way Cassandra matched everyone up, while Bob has his hands full with a teary Gail. In the end, he orders her off the equipment, saying he has no time for her tears.
Cassandra tells her story. She had big dreams of moving to New York to be a writer, but her weight has done a number on her self-confidence and kept her from reaching for her dreams. Somehow, the confident young woman who won the challenge now has eyes filled with fear in the gym. Everyone gathers round to push her through weight-lifting. Afterwards, she claims it was one of the most beautiful moments of her life, despite the fact that she's been heaving and sobbing. In this moment, she realizes she can do anything. She's been telling herself no, when she should have been saying yes. Bob decides to have the face-off opponents do little mini-challenges in the gym, putting Roy and Emily on the rowing machines together. Emily pulls it off! Next is Gail and Kimmy, Kim and Chism, Mark and Chris. Dolvett wants to make it interesting, raising the stakes in a face-off between Conda and Cassandra. The loser will buy the winner lunch. When Cassandra wins, Conda accuses her of cheating. Cassandra offers to do it again, but Dolvett says no. Once again, Conda is stirring up bad blood in the house.
Later, a smirking Conda delivers a Subway sandwich and drink to Cassandra and clearly isn't happy about it. Dolvett stops by and is surprised to see how thick the tension is. Cassandra claims victory has never tasted so good. Conda continues to maintain Cassandra cheated, while Cassandra thinks Conda's rude for even suggesting it. Dolvett offers a rematch during the Last-Chance Workout, and Cassandra jumps at the chance. It's soon time for another challenge. Alison has bad news for the Black Team right away: since Joe quit the show, they will forfeit his face-off, which means the Red Team already has one point before the weigh-in begins. Since the players will need all the help they can get, Alison calls out Bob and Dolvett, who will act as coaches for the Water Relay Challenge. The contestants will pump and pass buckets of water to each other through a series of obstacles, including a water wheel, a 10-foot wall and a chute. The first team to melt a block of ice to reach the mystery prize inside wins.
Since the Red Team has an extra player, Nancy sits out. Emily knows right away that pumping water will be her task, due to her weight-lifting past. Dolvett decides Kim and Conda will be his pumpers. When Megan has a hard time filling her bucket, Bob has her trade places with Chris, and things get much better. The competition heats up as the Black Team seems to be taking the lead - but the Red Team is first to grab their prize out of their semi-melted block of ice - now they need to get their entire team over the finish line. Cassandra claws at the prize as Bob summons the Blacks, but the Red Team takes the day. Finally, Lauren opens the plastic box containing their prize - video chats with their families. Kim gets very emotional, and Roy feels terrible when Chris starts crying, since she won't be able to talk to her kids.
Mark and Roy decide to give their chats to Chism and Chris. Lauren gives her chat to her mother Gail. Later, Buddy tells Dolvett that he's giving his chat to Mark - so he can be together with Chism and their family. To Mark, Buddy's gift is one of the greatest things anyone's ever done for him. Meanwhile, Bob is in Chicago for a surprise visit with the Aqua Team. He wants to do his part to help them meet their goal of losing 50 pounds in 30 days. Bob takes them to Planet Fitness to work out and winds up impressed that Adrian and Daphne really want to make it back to the ranch.
It's time for the Last-Chance Workout, and the rematch of Cassandra and Conda. Dolvett has designed a different sort of challenge for them. Both women are confident they'll win - and Cassandra wins again! A pouty Conda claims it doesn't matter; their real face-off will happen on the scale. Bob takes out his frustration over Joe's desertion in the prison yard, telling his team they're going to channel their rage into their workout. Finally it's time for the weigh-in. Alison re-explains the rules, adding that in the event of a tie, the team with the highest percentage of weight loss wins. But before anyone steps on the scale, Cassandra must state what she'd like to do with her two-pound advantage. Acting selflessly, she gives a pound to Gail and a pound to Megan. Nancy is first to take the scale, since she no longer has a weigh-in partner, and she's only lost two pounds.
The next face-off is Megan vs. Buddy, who head to the scale at the same time. Buddy weighs in first, and he's lost a decent nine pounds. With her one-pound advantage, Megan needs to lose five - and she's lost eight! She didn't need the one pound Cassandra gave her, and she still earned a point for the Black Team. Up next, Kimmy and Gail. Kimmy's only taken off three pounds. With her one-pound advantage, Gail will have to lose more than three pounds, and she's taken off double that. Bob admits he's never cussed so much at a single contestant. Gail learned a new word this week too, which isn't duck or truck... Jeremy and Lauren head to the scale next. Lauren is stunned that she only lost three pounds; Dolvett tells her she needs to acknowledge her inner athlete. Jeremy's happy to lose 11 pounds - finally, double digits! Now it's three to one, Black Team.
Roy and Emily are next. Roy's not feeling confident, but he knows he gave it all he has this week. He loses nine pounds. Now Emily will have to lose more than seven to beat him, but she only loses six. She thinks it sucks, but Bob reassures her that six is a good number. She cries on the scale and starts talking about how upset her dad will be. Bob tells her to disregard what her father would say; all that matters is what she and Bob have to say. Mark and Chris face off: Mark loses eight; Chris will need to lose more than six pounds, but she has only lost four. Now the score is tied, three to three. Up next are Kim and Chism. Kim loses six pounds, which means Chism will have to take off more than eight - and he's lost nine!
Finally, it's time for the showdown everyone's been waiting for: Cassandra vs. Conda, who's dropped only three pounds this week. Now Cassandra will have to lose more than two pounds - and she smashes that goal with an eight-pound loss, bringing home the victory for her team. Dolvett wonders if Conda is doing her homework, pissing her off even more. Regardless, Dolvett feels like Conda's still in the excuse zone. Now the Red Team will have to vote to send someone home - except for Roy, who has won immunity. In the elimination room, Nancy is first to cast her vote. She feels Kim is very motivated and will excel when she's off the ranch. Kim votes for Nancy, thinking she could be contributing more to the team. Lauren claims Nancy is holding their team back a little. Conda thinks Lauren would have the most successful journey off the ranch. With the same reasoning, Buddy, Mark and Roy vote for Lauren - who cries, unable to believe they would do so when she's been such a strong player.
Apologizing, Roy votes for Nancy. Now Kimmy will have to cast the final vote. Both Lauren and Nancy have three votes. If Kimmy votes for neither of them, they'll have a tie, in which case, the Black Team will be called in to choose whomever they want to send home. Kimmy cries; this is the most difficult decision she's ever had to make. In the end, she voted for the person she thinks is the strongest: Lauren. As surprised as she is, Lauren vows that the next time America sees her, she'll be $100,000 richer and the winner of the at-home prize.