Steve from OW here. The thirty minutes I spent watching this were ten times more enjoyable than being on the actual show, and everything you said was spot on.
My first experience on the show was that crucifixion torture challenge. It took ages for them to set that up, and they stuck Mercy and I in a van for about two hours while we waited - they refused to let us go to the bathroom and spoil our big entrance, so I got to sit right next to her as she was forced to squat and pee into a water bottle. We eventually get to go on set and hear the rules of our first big competition, and like you said, the point of the tomatoes in it was supposed to be to distract the people untying their teammates. Luke claimed the tomatoes were rotten and were thus supposed to be soft and painless, but due to the extreme cold, they all froze - Luke accidentally dropped one and when Frank saw the tomato literally bounce back up, he realized how hard they were and immediately signed up to be the person throwing them. Because he was also a MINOR LEAGUE PITCHER growing up. So yeah, tomato fast balls, being launched at my face. Good times.
After spending most of my first day on OW in the emergency room getting stitches on my face (yes the scar is still there), I knew the producers had no idea what they were doing. I auditioned bc I’ve been a lifelong big brother and survivor fan but this was nothing like that or any other logical reality show. They went out of their way to edit all strategy out of the show (there was actually a diary room we went into to talk about our gameplay, alliances etc which never even made it onto the show), the competitions were rigged for Frank, the Twitter popularity index was messed up bc several contestants families paid for thousands of spam bot accounts which altered the results, half of us got hurt and received no compensation or actual care for our injuries… but the producers somehow actually proved to be more intelligent than the actual competitors.
Epoch had the chance to just outright vote Frank out of the game bc no one would beat him in a comp, but they chose to vote me out instead. Why they added a twist out of nowhere about someone being voted out when everyone else was eliminated because they lost a competition, I’ll never understand… but half of the shows twists were created on the fly. Jeffry’s entire game was based on an alliance with JR which did virtually nothing for him and which every single one of us knew about. No one on that damn show seemed to actually think about winning, and that combined with Luke Tipples awkwardness and the producers lack of a clue made for one of the most hilariously horrible shows in television history. And believe me, it was as bad to be a part of as it was to watch. Thanks for the walk down memory lane, gotta share this with the friends who made the mistake of watching OW for me!
On and added fun fact, Frank spent a bulk of his winnings buying a publicist and a website and Beast Mode merchandise because he thought the show was super popular and would be his big break. Gotta love him.