I’m Just Hoppy To Be Here!

With the race not stopping for their normal break last week, the flow had more of the ‘amazing’ feel you’d expect for something called “The Amazing Race”, and it was refreshing to see.  Often times they tried to make a pretty stale leg of a race seem exciting by switching back and forth between teams real quick while playing fast music, but the excitement was always a bit lost when you see the teams hanging around an airport getting caught up and chatting until their next flight.

Glad to see he was feeling better later in race

While all that is still happening, adding the new twist of putting back to back legs in this year definitely made the opener far more exciting than it’s been for many seasons now.  Racers were clearly working up a sweat, as evidence on the cheerleaders shirts, oh and Mike nearly dying on the bus.  That was a pretty scary scene, and it was good to see him look much better later on in the episode.

Jet and Cord started the race off still trying to figure out the clue that most people used to buddy system to figure out, as I mentioned in last week’s recap here, but you’d expect them to still be in the race when they hit the check-in point simply because they weren’t going to boot someone 10 minutes into the episode.  It didn’t hurt that the sign-in sheet for the next flight had 11 slots on it (the number of teams on the race), so any bit of drama with them being eliminated quickly left after the episode began.

One important thing that did carry over was the U-Turn handed to Amanda and Kris last week for finishing the first challenge last.  It was time to pay up, and we knew that was coming this week, the question was simply when, and what position in the race will they be when it happens.   Sadly for Amanda and Kris fans, it was looking bleak early when it took them quite a bit of time to figure out the first clue which put them on the second flight out of Sydney, but they still had a chance considering one of the detour challenges appeared to be super easy, yet nobody chose it willingly.

Vampire Amanda

Every team decided to do the “Spirit World” challenge which required them to re-create some rock pattern on the ground, then dance on top of it.  Pretty easy in concept, but certainly time consuming putting a bunch of rocks in a pattern.  The other option was to essentially put 4 items on a rock, but perhaps spitting paint onto a rock scared them away because it was clearly the easier choice to make.  By the way, did anyone notice one of the rocks looked like the SoBe lizard that was painted on Ashley Greene?

It was a little weird to see the guys suddenly start tearing off their shirts, but Melinda certainly didn’t mind that part, especially when they showed Kris.   I guess if Survivor is going to show half-naked women in their underwear for 75% of the episode, The Amazing Race can give a few treats for the ladies.  Fair is fair, right?     Although it’s still probably not too fair when the guys get this, and the girls get this.

The Road Block was entertaining and a bit challenging, where teams had to dress up in kangaroo suits and bounce around town holding a periodic table trying to figure out why Hg and Bi were highlighted. Points to Kynt and Christina who appeared to be the only two who knew what they were without outside help – Mercury and Bismuth. Zev and Justin with Margie and Luke did a pretty smart thing and asked the first person they saw who happened to have Internet access on their cell phone, and quickly found out the answer to their puzzle.  Every other team just kind of followed each other around, but that seemed to work as well, considering no team really had much trouble on this except for Margie dropping a piece of her suit requiring them to go back and losing some time.

Zev and Justin getting down!

Zev and Justin took the opportunity of Margie’s wardrobe malfunction to pull ahead, get the final clue and make it to the check-in point first earning them a 5 day trip to Cancun.   Jet and Cord also came back from a disastrous opening week to actually end up finishing 3rd, just behind the Globetrotters.  I really thought they were screwed this leg, but got their act together and finished strong.

All good things must come to an end, and no I’m not referring to the team finishing last, although I’m sure they feel that way as well.  I’m referring to the editing tricks at the end to try and make the finish sound extremely exciting and close between the three-way race of Ron/Christina, Gary/Mallory and Amanda/Kris.   The music kicked up, they flashed some of Mallory’s crazy faces, scenes were quickly swapped between the remaining three teams until each one trickled in at their own pace which really wasn’t as exciting as they tried to make it seem.

Ron clearly got sick of Mallory’s way of playing the game, which is kind of just going with the flow.  He decided it was time to “cut the cord” and go their own way, despite Mal telling them she knew exactly where she was going.  Seemed a little over the top, but I’m guessing Mallory’s hyper attitude isn’t for everyone, especially a Ron.

Of course Gary and Mallory checked in first, so I was expecting Ron’s stubbornness to hurt them, but no amount of editing can change their sizable lead they still had over Amanda and Kris which resulted in a less than dramatic finish.  Amanda and Kris  were victims yet again by the U-Turn, and are going to have nightmares about that aspect of the game for years.

Sucky way to go out of the game for them, maybe they’ll be back for “The Amazing Race: Even More Unfinished Business” sometime in the future.

Final Rankings:

  1. Zev and Justin
  2. The Globetrotters
  3. Jet and Cord
  4. Kisha and Jen
  5. Margie and Luke
  6. Mel and Mike
  7. Kynt and Vyxsin
  8. Jamie and Cara
  9. Gary and Mallory
  10. Ron and Christina
  11. Amanda and Kris (eliminated)

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