Amazing Race 11/21/10

I don’t know why I feel this way (I am fully aware that it’s a competition, and one needs to play to win) but something about the way that Team Doctor acted after they U-Turned Chad and Stephanie (who I didn’t care for at all) rubbed me the wrong way.

I think at this point, I am hoping that Claire and Brooke can go all the way and win the Race, even if the odds are against them.

I’m happy to see Chad and Steph go, but I have to give Chad props for being a gracious loser after the U-Turn (other than his comments to the Docs at the challenge.) Normally whenever a U-Turned team loses, it’s nothing but nasty comments about how stupid that other team is, even though they were planning on using the U-Turn too.

I noticed that too, but, to me, it seemed like he was twitching while saying it, as in “OK, I really am a gracious loser but dammit WE LOST!

I have to give props to the Punk Rockers for how they well they did as well as keeping under the radar. If they can maintain their game going forward, they just might have a shot at the Top 3.

I must have stopped paying attention for a few minutes because I have no idea what happened? How did team doctor act???

I’m glad one of the dating couples have gone home. I haven’t liked any of them, especially how they treat each other. Mostly the guys seem to be constantly berating their girlfriends. I’m therefore hoping one of the all women teams win. At this point I don’t care which, I like them both.

I didn’t see anything untoward about Kat and Nat’s behaviour at the u-turn. I was happily surprised that neither of the teams that were u-turned saw it as anthing but strategy. In past seasons, some teams have made the use of things like the u-turn a moral failing.


How did it get so dark so quickly after Brooke/Claire and Chad/Stephanie got done with the roadblock. the Doctors checked in with daylight and the I would have guessed the other two teams weren’t too far behind them.

Could they not a taxi to the Pit stop, and both teams hoofed it?

I think they were further behind the Docs than the editing made it seem. The editors did a good job at keeping us completely confused as to where everyone was.

I think the rickshaw task took a lot longer than it seemed. The doctors were probably there for a while, then the other two teams showed up and there was a bit of an overlap, and then after the doctors left the other two still had a long way to go. I don’t think the checklists they kept showing on screen were exactly correct with how far along they were, otherwise it seems like they were all neck and neck, which doesn’t make sense.

Funniest moment for me was when Notre Dame guy warned his girlfriend to be careful in the ricskhaw:

“Keep your extremities in.”
“You mean my swearing?”


Have to give props to Nick and Vick. I know they’re fun to make fun of, but they are kicking some butt, very understated and just slipping right by other teams. I am constantly impressed with Vicki’s athletic skills and non-fear of anything physical. When they decided not to U-turn another team, do you think that was smart? I think it kept them out of the other’s radar a little longer.

When Brooke was putting on that bike bell was the only time I’ve seen her getting down and frustrated. It must have been late in the day and I’m sure she was exhausted.

That sugarcane challenge was really lame. The others were pretty cool and required some stamina and strategy, but grinding sugarcane was not challenging in the least.

Wow. Does it really get dark that quickly in Bangladesh, or was there a task in there somewhere that we missed?

Taxi Assessment:

Stuck in the Desert and Officially Detained - or, Philiminated with extreme prejudice.
Ron & Tony and Andie & Jenna and Connor & Jonathan and Katie & Rachel and Michael & Kevin and Gary & Mallory - See you in the final episode.
Chad & Stephanie (down from “Stopping”) - Chad & Stephanie made a couple relatively minor mistakes and it cost them in the end. First mistake was not showing hustle to get a better flight when they had a chance. They had a lead over Jill & Thomas, and they could have used it to grab the flight Jill & Thomas eventually got. But they didn’t, and wound up on the last flight. I call that a “minor” mistake because it looked like Jill & Thomas got hte better flight more due to their own perserverance than any oversight by Chad & Stephanie. Still, Chad & Stephanie were in a tie for third until they took a wrong turn down the streets of Dhaka, another minor mistake, and one that wasnt really their fault. However, they apparently took enough of a wrong turn that they couldn’t make up the time over either Nat & Kat or the also-U-Turned Brook & Claire.

Flat Tire - or, not likely to get anywhere soon.
No one this week.

Stopping for Gas - or, not broken-down, exactly, but not a good sign.
Nick & Vicki (holding steady) - Still the weakest team left, IMO, but I really can’t accuse them of being a bit thick, not this week. Pushing for a better flight dropped them comfortably into second place, and they wound up cruising for the rest of the episode. Except…except Nick did the Roadblock, and now he’s done six to Vicki’s three, and if I’m remembering the rules right, that means she’s got to do all the rest of them. And maybe she’ll completely own the rest of the Roadblocks, but right now removing the choice of who does what seems like a bad idea.

"Rapido! Por Favor?" - or, making meaningless ineffectual comments from the back seat, but in no immediate danger.
Jill & Thomas (holding steady) - I can’t really say much about Jill & Thomas in this episode. They caught a lucky break in getting the earliest flight, although truthfully the reason the had a chance to catch it was because of their own diligence. This team has been kind of up-and-down all season, averaging out to high-mediocre, but if they can make it to the final three, all it will take is one flash of brilliance.

In the Passing Lane - or, ahead of the pack, but not quite comfortably.
Brook & Claire (holding steady) - An exhausting day for Brook & Claire, just barely avoiding elimination. Claire particularly is starting to flag, and I wonder if that’s not going to play a role in the next few weeks. Brook’s pretty indefatiguable, or at least projects that image, but Claire might be close to the edge. On the other hand, maybe just resting someplace out of the heat will perk her up.

Cruisin’ with Earl - or, drivin’ on the shoulder, takin’ shortcuts, and generally kickin’ butt.
Nat & Kat (holding steady) - Considering Nat & Kat started last, this was a prety good leg for them. They didn’t really have a chance to nab the flights required to advance to first or second, but they did beat the other two teams on the last flight. I thought it odd that they were still at the Roadblock when Brook & Claire and Chad & Stephanie arrived – presumably that Roadblock was harder than it looked – but they were ahead at the U-Turn station where it counted, and ahead at the mat where it really counted. Plus: good decision to U-Turn Chad & Stephanie. Better to have two entire teams farther behind you instead of just one, when in tight competition for last place.

[sub]Props to Mullinator and his Raj Rating[/sub]

What about “nuts and bullets”? Also from the same woman.

I actually thought Nat and Kat were perfectly correct when talking to Chad and Stephanie about their decision to u-turn them. She (yup, still can’t tell them apart) kept saying “It’s not personal” and wished them luck.

I’m far, far more impressed with Brook than I anticipated I would be this season. She looks like Lisa Kudrow, sounds like Kathy Griffin, and is really just even-keeled at almost all times.

Amen. She’s a heck of a racer.

Well, I don’t know that that’s really an issue. Being a gracious loser doesn’t require one to like losing. I mean, I think a chess player can be a gracious loser while being unhappy that his opponent exploited a blunder to mate him; a football player can be a gracious loser while being unhappy that the opposing wide receiver burned the DB on the winning touchdown; and an Amazing Race contestant can be a gracious loser while being unhappy that the other team got to the U-Turn first.

I’m still suspicious of them due to past performance, but they really have strung together a good series of legs.

Me also. I was not at all impressed with her pre-race interview; she seemed like a lot of tough talk with nothing to back it up. But she’s been a consistently good racer, and Claire’s not really a slouch either.

She-Tatootard went up about 50 points in my estimation for trying the sugar juice even though she didn’t have to. I like seeing people enjoying new cultural experiences.

Yeah, Nat & Cat rocked…so they’ll probably do fine next week (non-elim) and get the boot the week after because that happens to every team I really like.

I was glad to see Chad & Steph go, but they took it well. Although the trash-talking at the Roadblock was a little childish.

I was so rooting for the doctors to get to the U-turn first, so that the elimination wouldn’t come down to them or Brooke & Claire, my two favorite teams.

Is there any strategic reason to use the U-turn when you’re in the lead by 7 hours? You’re basically influencing the outcome of who loses the leg…but somebody’s going to lose anyway, and it sure as hell isn’t going to be you.

I had the exact opposite reaction. Chad was a douche and I felt Nat and Kat took his douchiness extremely well.

This was the best episode in a long while. A very tense close ending (the fact that it was between a team I didn’t like and a team I want to see win made it even better), airport shenanigans that actually mattered (Kudos to Jill and whoever for getting the much earlier flight) and good leg design. The double U Turn is a great idea. U Turning one team basically writes them off. U Turning two makes it still a race. If they have to have U Turns (a concept I am not completely sold on), I hope they are all double ones from now on.

Well, they said it was just for that reason—to influence who comes in last and who, therefore, would not make it to the final 3. Whether that was the true reason, well…