The Woobie: Hector. He's one of the smartest kids in town, but his parents don't love him, and he learns that he's cloned from a master criminal. On top of that, the first book ends with him apparently getting killed.
The game show
Sequel Difficulty Drop: The third season of Minds compared to all prior episodes, by lowering the requirement to two wins, which had been done three times under the three-win requirement. That said, the game itself isn't any easier.