Tonight’s episode of Kid Nation, titled “Not Even Close To Fair” was yet another example of how messy the city of Bonanza can get when a big change is made. The herd does not like to be disrupted and in tonight’s episode, tensions ran high as the council decided to trade some district members.

While Yellow team leader Zach opted to take Blaine (Greg’s right-hand man) from the blue team, Anjay and Guylan traded one outcast for another by bringing the red district’s Emilie over to the blue team, with the weird but sweet kid, Nathan going over to the red team. Sure, the red team was just as happy to lose Emilie as she was to have the chance to start over with a new district but they didn’t seem all that pleased to have Nathan in exchange. Guylan rudely pointed out (in front of Nathan) that they’re just mad because they hate Nathan. Sometimes I forget how almost-unintentionally cruel kids can be.

Mike realized that Nathan might not feel all that welcome and since he, himself isn’t very popular from what it seems, he quickly extended a warm welcome to the new kid. Meanwhile, the yellow district was thrilled to have Blaine on their side, recognizing that as the token big-kid, he’d be able to help them with challenges. In turn, Blaine was equally pleased at the opportunity to drop the whole sidekick act and get out from under Greg’s shadow. Greg wasn’t so agreeable to the change and threw a number of hissy fits expressing his disapproval over the yellow team poaching his best friend.

The only district that didn’t trade a team member was the green team. As trading was apparently optional, Laurel opted to keep her group as it was. The green district has a pretty high record of gold-star wins and everyone gets along so Laurel figured there was no point in trading someone out of or into her district. The other teams didn’t think this was fair but Laurel seemed to have borrowed Taylor’s “deal with it” attitude and didn’t care that people disapproved.

For the challenge, the districts had to haul heavy rocks in a wagon across an obstacle course. The first district over the finish line wins the upper class. The twist to this competition was that if the combined weight of all the districts’ rocks weighed a ton (or more) they would win a big prize. As the districts were allowed to decide how many rocks they put into their wagon before they began pulling it, they had the option to put in fewer rocks, thus increasing their odds of making it to the finish line first. Of course, this would mean decreasing the odds that the combined weight of all of the rocks would hit the one-ton mark, earning the town the big mystery-prize.

While the kids tried to decide how many rocks to put into their wagons, Taylor insisted that they only take a few and just head to the finish line. “Forget about the town” she said as she urged the rest of her team to go for the upper class status rather than the big reward. Blaine stepped up though and insisted that they get more rocks into the wagon. Green over-extended itself, filling up their wagon with too many rocks. Once they tried to take off they couldn’t budge the wagon so they had to remove some. Red also tried carry as much as they could. This resulted in them having the heaviest load but coming in last. Blue took first place, followed by yellow and then green and red.

In the end, the combined weight was over a hundred pounds lighter than the 2000 pound goal weight so they didn’t win the option to choose between a camper-kids-lounge or beds for everyone. Guylan suggested that people were too worried about winning the race for their district that they didn’t try to carry more rocks. Sophia took this opportunity to tell Guylan off. Whatever she said must’ve been filled with vulgarities as the brief statement was completely bleeped out. Everyone laughed and cheered and Guylan was humiliated. Sophia apologized to him later but lets face it, the damage was done. Guylan is so over this whole leadership thing.

It seems to happen every week. One kid decides they miss home and they want to leave. Maybe it was seeing that she might have been able to sleep in a bed, had the rock challenge gone better but little Randi (you know, Randi? The random blonde girl who is sometimes seen in the group shots?) is tired of Bonanza city. She told Taylor she misses her family, her bed and animals and wants to go home. Taylor cant do much to console her other than to cry with her. Greg, the knight in shining braces, stepped in to try and cheer her up. In the end though, it didn’t make a difference. Perhaps Randi realized that with only 12 days left, making a grand departure from the town would be her only chance to get some screen time in an episode. Bye Randi.

The gold star choice came down to Blaine and some other kid who I’ve never seen before. The council chose Blaine for stepping up in the yellow team, thus proving that Blaine might have been right in thinking he was stuck in Greg’s shadow when he was in the blue district.

Finally, since the kids were all complaining about the council, the host told them they would have the opportunity to run for town council against the current leaders. DK raised his hand to oppose Guylan. Blaine, banking on his newfound popularity, stepped up to run against Zach. Greg, following Blaine’s lead, chose to run against the ever-unpopular Anjay. And in the biggest surprise of the night, Michael has decided to run against Laurel.

So will Laurel’s decision to keep her district together help her secure her position as district leader? Guylan seems ready to throw in the towel on the whole leadership thing so DK probably wont have to do much to beat him. Greg is probably popular enough to beat Anjay, as long as he keeps his temper down. Unfortunately for Anjay, it seems unlikely that Greg will run a clean campaign. I’m guessing there will be at least one incident involving Greg publicly making fun of Anjay in an effort to get people on his side in next week’s episode.

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