Most reality shows cut off contestants from the outside world except in the case of family emergencies. Top Shot is no different. By examining the dates and nature of the tweets (and other social media outlets) from former Top Shot contestants, I've made a few guesses of who may or may not show up on the all-star season.
- Season 1 fan favorite J.J. Racaza was tweeting up through August 17. His previous tweets were a whirlwind of world travels and shooting competitions. Reasoning that the first challenge is actually taking place on the second or possibly even third day of filming, it's a pretty good guess that Racaza will not make another run at the title.
- Season 2's Jamie Franks stopped tweeting on August 12. That was about one week ago. This may be an indication that he put aside the social media to prepare for reentering the fray. However, he is also to be an infrequent tweeter, so this may just be another short hiatus.
- Season 2's Jay Lim is a pretty avid tweeter. A tweet from August 16 replied to a follower who wrote they would like to see him, Chris Reed, George Reinas, Racaza, and Gabby Franco return for the all-star season. Lim replied that these were "good choices ;)," which may be an indication of who will show up. Or it may mean he just liked the support, especially since he was still tweeting as of this morning. I wonder if History has even informed all past contestants of who has and who has not been selected to participate. This could mean some past contestants are unaware that a new season has even commenced filming.
- Season 3 winner Dustin Ellermann's backstory as a Christian camp director is widely known by fans of the show. Ellermann tweeted recently that he had ramped up camp, and even more recently that he was in California, the same state where Top Shot is filmed. This could be a strong indicator that Ellermann is back to defend his title.
- Season 4's Gabby Franco was tweeting up through August 17 as well, but her last tweet connected to a Facebook post saying that she would be out of town for a while. Could this mean she is on her way back to the range? Time will tell.
- Season 4's Michelle Viscusi tweeted this morning and has been frequently updating her Facebook fan page. This most likely means she will not be returning for Season 5.
- Season 4 winner Chris Cheng has just started his shooting contract with Bass Pro-Shops, and while Bass is a big supporter of the show, it is unlikely that Cheng would jump off the pro circuit so soon after he started. Not to mention the fact that he replied to one of my tweets just this morning.
The real test will come in the following days. Now that Colby has revealed Season 5 is being filmed, any former contestant tweeting or using other social media (some contestants have favored Facebook pages for connecting with fans over Twitter) after that point can (almost certainly) be ruled out as a contender in the all-star season.
Keep checking this blog as I will try to keep a running list of former contestants that can be ruled out as participants.