“Alright Logan, We’re in India. . .Again.”
SWITZERLAND – GERMANY – AUSTRIA – ROMANIA – RUSSIA – INDIA – THAILAND – CHINA – USA
How do you know I am right that all of the commenters in Phil Keoghan’s blogs are 40+ year old women? The first thing all of them mention was how great it was to see Phil Keoghan in his underwear.
This is the fan base that dictates the direction that the show has taken in recent years. Women who stop and only think about Phil Keoghan in his underwear.
Now you understand why we have to put up with some teams for three seasons even though they have not yet made an appearance in this timeline.
Let us mourn for the empty brain cells in the minds of the casual fan base. . .
Okay. Now let’s resume ripping this season to shreds. And boy oh boy, the next level of shredding the season begins with this episode.
Previously on TAR: Seven teams took a ride on the Trans-Siberian Railway from Novosibirsk to Krasnoyarsk, Russia. On the train, Luke drew a suspicious eye from Mike after using the U-Turn. But once in Novosibirsk it was Victor who raised eyebrows. . .
It was Victor who raised eyebrows by ditching his friends. At the Roadblock Luke ran away with the lead in frigid temperatures and won another leg with his mother Margie. Flight attendants Christie & Jodi came in last but were spared of elimination.
Coming Up Tonight: The race heads to India and continues to take its toll on Mel. And teams have trouble with taxis.
– Intro time. I love how unnecessary that ‘Coming Up’ segment truly is and am glad it has been ditched for several years.
– I have noticed that Phil has inserted himself as a character more than any other season.
– Phil introduces us to Novosibirsk. It is another large city in Russia, but the largest of all in Siberia.
Siberia really does not have a military. It just happened to be Cadets Day when production was in town.
– We are also re-introduced to another theatre. It is known as the Siberian Coliseum. I feel bad for the one in Krasnoyarsk.
– Margie & Luke, who arrived first at 12:18pm, will depart at 12:18am. Margie reads that they will fly two thousand miles to Jaipur, India. It is known as the Pink City because it was dressed for visitors. Today it is known as the Pink City.
That’s how you get Jaipur Eye.
– Once in Jaipur, teams will take a taxi to the remote outskirts to find a sacred tree.
And no, it is not the inside of a Deku Tree.
– I have read people from India discussing online how the architecture in Asian cities is treated differently from North America. They say North America tends to make every town look like little boxes on the hillside. In India, they claim a different architect built each city and makes it all drastically different.
So maybe we should not be so quick to complain “OH NO THIS IS INDIA FOR THE FOURTH TIME IN FIVE SEASONS IN ADDITION TO THIS BEING THE THIRD SEASON IN A ROW. AND OH MY GOD, THIS IS THE ELEVENTH ROUND IN INDIA. WHAT IS THIS? THE AMAZING RACE: INDIA?”
– Margie & Luke’s reaction to finally exiting the cold European and northwest Asian climate as they head for India?
He looks like the old school Gamespot’s Oh Snap rating emblem.
– Luke tells us about how he likes having his mom as a teammate and that it is good harmony. Margie does the communicating while he does all of the strategizing.
– Tammy & Victor begin in second at 1224am. Victor says he took the role of the eldest son which is important in an Asian family. Complete schooling, becoming a lawyer, and being extroverted.
– Jaime & Cara are next at 1230am. Cara describes herself as easygoing and contrasts it with Jaime’s strength, conviction, and. . .
CARA: And her aggressivity. If that is even a word.
Swing and a miss, Cara.
– JAIME: Looking forward to ditching these extra Marshallow Men jackets.
They always say the ‘marshmallow men jacket adds ten pounds’.
– Margie & Luke and Tammy & Victor show up to the airport. I do not know what they are laughing about but whatever it is it is probably lame. Seeing Margie & Luke and Tammy & Victor at a ticket counter to purchase tickets is just a bunch of kacca.
See? Editors agree.
– Mel & Mike have their pit start at 1:01am. Oh those stragglers. Mel says the most important part is to survive the race, but he feels he is losing steam. He feels better thinking about billions of people in India.
– Mark & Michael check out at 1:02am. They run off to get a cab.
Let’s split up and meet at the corner three blocks away!
Eh, I feel safer following this random blue dot on the road. It just feels. . .right, you know?
– Mark & Michael meet for a confessional.
MARK: We have three teams of girls that are six feet tall and we are not even that tall on each other’s shoulders.
Didn’t they say at the start of the season that they are both four feet tall?
So if my calculations are correct:
4 + 4 = 6.
I guess Mark & Michael are not only oblivious to each other, their surroundings, and some of the tasks, but they are also oblivious when it comes to basic mathematics.
MICHAEL: Never been to India.
MARK: Maybe we’ll get a dot on our forehead while we’re there.
Mark mocks it in jest? Geez, you’re the one that ran off in a random direction away from your partner. You could really use some additional wisdom and a third eye to ensure you are not oblivious to everything! Not to mention that the bindi also protects you from bad luck and demons.
– Margie & Luke is in line for a seven o’ clock flight. They ask out loud to Jaime & Cara and Tammy & Victor what flight they found.
VICTOR (whisper): Seven ten.
Jaime, knowing that Luke cannot hear a whisper, has the bright idea to just show the number on her fingers.
Again, why did Victor whisper? He has a mind boggling level of tunnel vision for his edit. Not as bad as Mark & Michael, of course.
– Cara tells us that everyone will be taking these two flights to Moscow, but everyone will be on the same flight to Jaipur.
– Ah. Here stands Kisha & Jen at 1:28am. Kisha wishes they get along better because it is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and wants to enjoy it with her sister.
– Mel shows up to the airport and asks loudly if he can be on the “Kacca flight” as a joke.
Screw you old man. I made a joke that you made in 2009 before you did! Ha ha!
– Mark & Michael are now at the airport. Michael hums a tune.
– Christie & Jodi begin in last at 3:09am. Holy crap they are slow. Christie gives the obligatory talk on the Speed Bump. Jodi misses her daughter and wears her name on her bracelet because she is lucky, and she wants luck right now blah blah blah.
– Teams fly to Moscow. From Moscow they head to New Delhi. In New Delhi they shall all board the same flight to Jaipur.
Gotta love the Google Earth farming grids!
This is the eleventh round that TAR has played in India. It is also the eleventh time that I have screen capped a monkey in TAR.
This one is just sittin’ back and taking in the city sights.
I wonder if all cars in India are labelled as having “400 Camelpower”? We never see horses in India.
Jaree’s mouth foams as she sees the never-ending line of vibrant fabric in the city streets.
– The flight lands. It is either sunrise or sunset. Tammy & Victor are first into a cab and direct the driver to Dhula Village.
We go from Kacca Airlines to Peepli Ka Pedh. What’s next? They have to go find a dog of a poodle breed on the streets?
– VICTOR: We are in a cab with Babu and he is going to take us to VICTORy.
– Christie & Jodi enter a cab in second. The first impressions about India are generally regarding the poverty and the number of people. But for Christie?
Christie’s youthful innocence is refreshing on a show like TAR. It is like Family Edition all over again.
One time in elementary school during the fifth grade, myself and several friends held up signs asking cars on the road to honk their horn. Not even for a cause. Just because we were bored and nothing to do in the Canadian desert.
Guess who had the most ballin’est horns? Yep, it was the East Indian drivers that lived in the surrounding neighbourhoods.
I would not be surprised if there is a World Series of Car Horns annual competition in India.
In fact, Xzibit Gupta will be hosting a show called Pimp My Car Horn which starts airing next spring.
– Mel & Mike get inside of a cab who does not speak English. Mark & Michael race into a cab and stop Margie & Luke from stealing it.
– Margie & Luke are fourth. Jaime & Cara fifth.
– Mel & Mike try to get their bags out of the trunk but the driver sprinted off insisting he would get directions. Mike now looks inside of the passenger seat to pop the hood while the cab driver is away. They did not hear the driver saying he was running to get directions. He is desperate for that fare.
If it were not for the presence of a camera crew, everyone else would be much more suspicious of what Mike is trying to pull.
– The driver returns and says he knows where he is going.
MEL (hitting clue against seat): GO! GO! GO! PLEASE! PLEASE! We have to catch allll of those other teams. We are far behind.
And this is why the Simpson family never likes to take Abraham Simpson with them when they travel abroad.
– Mel & Mike are not encouraged by the driver’s broken English response.
Okay Mel & Mike, now it is your turn. You must now translate that sentence into Hindi. Let’s see how you do!
– Mel says he feels bad for yelling and screaming for the rest of the day.
– Christie & Jodi are happily driving in their taxi until they stop. Why?
The driver is taking so long to the point that the camera operator exits to stretch their legs. Pouting Jodi waits.
JODI: Does he not have a Hurry button?
– Mark & Michael comment on the cows and camels on the street. They do not wish to be taxi drivers. Jaime likes to point out monkeys jumping off of roofs. Kisha & Jen laugh about the nervousness o driving in the streets.
– And guess who gets the “Oh no, the poverty!” emotional edit? You know, the edit that is meant to win over the viewers. It all stems from the early days with Nancy & Emily and Millie & Chuck.
Yep. Margie & Luke. What is funny is that Margie smiled when pointing out the cow to Luke on the street. It is almost as if she knew he would have that reaction.
– Mark & Michael comment on the fires in the streets and people running around without clothes. Michael’s voice is not shaken as they drive through the slums.
Jay walking? Now that is unsafe. I wonder if the saris are reflective at night?
– Julia Roberts tears up over the runned down buildings and stray animals.
Cry or take duck lipped selfie? Cry or duck lipped selfie?
Yes, we know! Cold Case is on next! Geez. Jaime cries over that show still being on.
– Now it is Luke’s turn to cry.
They didn’t start the fire. . .okay, they probably did.
But look at that statue on the dashboard. It looks like a yellow Santa Claus. Can someone explain that?
Hope that is not an oncoming tractor.
– We have had these types of scenes several times over the years. Just once I wish they would take it to a comedic extreme. We have the usual unsanitary eating and living conditions. The chaos. The noise. The pollution.
But then we have that dog run over by the tractor. Then some guy juggling on the streets screws up and one of the balls hits somebody in the face. Then the person in the face falls back into one of the fires in the street by accident. Then people run in the streets and accidentally get hit by cars. Then the pile up of cars increases. Then a herd of cattle start running wild too and slip on the oil and slide along the road like an ice rink and collide with a manure-filled truck.
– Luke is overwhelmed. Margie comforts Luke and gives the usual ‘look how lucky we are’.
– Commercial break.
– Victor waves to the kids on the street until they find the tree. Clearly it is sunrise because the sun is shining far brighter than it did a few moments ago.
We see Russell Hantz, Clay Jordan, Neleh Dennis, and Katie Gallagher all hanging out around the tree.
– There are no clues around. However, they do find something that is like the McDonald’s of India.
A Call Centre! “This is the Sacred Pee Tree calling and we were wondering. . .oh, they hung up.”
Oh no. Even worse. They have to call an East Indian call centre. Forget it. Just eliminate me right here. Game over, man.
VICTOR: So that is one Chicken Fried Rice, two Sweet and Sour Pork. . .
– Okay, they are directions to the next route marker. In the shocker of all shockers, Victor cannot understand.
You would think all telemarketers in North America would be paying attention to this episode.
– Victor comes up with the idea of Babu coming over to listen to the voice. He understands and they are off and running.
It’s off to see The Wizard, the wonderful Wizard of Jaipur. . .
– Victor thought the voice said valet parking. Apparently it was very wrong.
– Five cabs all drive in a line on a one lane road. Tammy & Victor’s cab squeezes by the oncoming traffic.
Wise words from Mike.
– The five cabs all stop as the ten racers run on the sand. Mike warns Mel about the sand.
MARK: This is the tree.
No. It can’t be.
– The teams all circle around the tree looking for a clue. Mel notices the two mystic men sitting under a sacred tree. Nobody clues into the red phones.
– Christie & Jodi keep motoring along as they talk about the Speed Bump. Tammy & Victor are excited to see Christie & Jodi to confirm they are indeed team number one.
CHRISTIE: That’s not a good feeling.
JODI: . . . . . . ……………………………………………………………………………………………nope.
She is like the Rob Ford of responding to statements.
Jesus. We could have had five more seconds of footage if we did not have that really long Jodi pause.
– Margie sees the phone. So they are all in line. Kisha & Jen think they have it and want to go to Amber Fort. Margie & Luke want to follow them. Jaime is screaming at her cab driver to re-enter.
CARA: Amber Parking.
Amber Parking? Really. It looks like Tammy & Victor were the smart ones in this situation.
– Mark & Michael think they have it too. Christie & Jodi see the other five teams coming back.
– Christie & Jodi find the phone and do not seem to have it.
– Tammy & Victor show up to Amber Fort. It is a Roadblock. That person must use traditional tools to carry food and water to satisfy each of the camels in their group. Once the food reaches the designated line and the water spills out the trough, the camel master will give them their next clue.
Camel master. You can milk a camel, ride a camel, feed a camel, and eventually, model a camel.
I think a water bucket suits this perfectly!
Oh. That makes more sense.
– Victor spills camel feed all over his face. It does not taste good. He dumps the first batch without any other teams present.
– Mark & Michael pass Margie & Luke’s cab on the road. They pass an irritated Julia Roberts too. Then they pass Kisha & Jen.
INDY 500? Is that supposed to be a pun? If anything, here it is called the Indy 500 Million because of the chaos and the number of people on the road!
“Hey Jim, where do you want to be in five years?”
“Oh, I want to go pro with this modeling thing. Find a cheap apartment in Abu Dhabi and hope to make something for myself.”
– Victor is tiring.
TAMMY: I thought my dad would be so excited when he sees Victor has to shovel camel feed. He thinks Victor and I lead such a privileged life.
a) You will lead a privileged life regardless if Victor spends ten minutes shovelling camel feed on a paid trip around the world for a chance at one million dollars.
b) You suck at grammar and verb conjugation.
– Victor transitions to pouring the water from the bucket. Whether it is his camel feed bucket is unknown.
Dumbo and his O-G Amir get ready to jump some locals. Don’t come to my block unless you want to see the inside of a trunk.
Victor is not the only snake in India that is in desperate need of charm.
– ROADBLOCK: Who wants to be Bahara’s Care Giver?
Kisha, Mark, Jaime, Margie, and. . .Mel are all doing the Roadblock.
Not a good idea.
– Kisha reads the instructions next to the camel. It spits in her face.
– Jaime asks the camel master if the water bucket is what they use for the camel feed.
JAIME: Is this what we use?
CAMEL MASTER: . . .
JAIME: Do you understand English?
JAIME: YOU F—ING ANNOY ME!
I am not making it up.
Michael is not impressed. He is going to be short with her.
– We see them all start with the water bucket. Mel already sounds exhausted and he has not even finished one trip. It is not even his groin that is the source of his complaint.
– Margie says she can hear Luke cheering for her.
Because Margie can hear Luke cheering for her, teams call her the Bionic Woman? That is the most flawed reasoning I have ever heard in my life.
– Oh! I completely forgot about this! Mark has one of the most unintentionally most offensive moments of the season.
You know what ululation means? It is the “long, wavering, high-pitched vocal sound resembling a howl with a trilling quality”.
In other words, that sound you associate with Muslim and other Eastern countries?
Well, Mark does it to the crowd as a form of gathering their support and appreciating their hard labour.
This truly is Mark & Michael’s legacy. Their complete and total unawareness of their actions and how the world is around them.
He even adds in a Black Power salute. You know it is a weak season when Mark is always the comedic relief ahead of two people who are paid comedians in Hollywood.
Did somebody say ‘awkward’?
– Kisha has never taken care of livestock before. She has never had a pet. Odd.
– Margie complains about the weight of the bucket. Mel thinks he is too old for this as the water bucket carries him rather than the other way around. He had to do it because it has been he has only done one out of the first four Roadblocks.
And last time I checked, Mel’s name is not Wynona.
– Victor is finished. Him and Tammy run back to their cab. We are not told of the next destination.
– We see a local tending to a camel.
The best part is you get to hear him groan in pain quietly on the audio. That is so going to end up on India’s Funniest Home Videos.
No better time to practice your triple jump technique.
– Tammy & Victor read that they must head to Ramniwas Ramgopal Puppet Store. Once here they will find their next clue. The Finishing Point soundtrack is finally over.
– Mike thinks Mel will be there at least thirty minutes more after everyone else. Christie & Jodi arrive as they run into Tammy & Victor. I would guess they are behind by about five to ten minutes.
– Mike realizes this Roadblock is not ideal for a 68-year-old man. Kisha finishes off the water bucket. We continue to see Mel walking on death’s door.
Hopefully his groin will recover so he can walk through the Pearly Gates.
– It is like a Mr. Bean sketch as Mel’s feet drags along the sand. He is breathing hard. Jodi is doing the Roadblock as Christie gets to keep her clothes on. The camel taunts Mel as he walks by.
– Commercial break.
– Music picks up in dramatics as Mel goes along the sand. Mark, Margie, Jaime, and Jodi are all using the bucket for the camel feed. Mel is the only one who can read.
See. His hard work pays off.
– Although one person has chosen to not use the basket nor the bucket.
Nothing like stuffing your bra with camel feed–the latest in endowment technology!
Thanks for not dying, dad!
The seven unused baskets are just there for decoration.
Oh, and remember Harper’s Island? CBS truly was pimping the heck out of that show over the next month or so. They would even have a live countdown on TV for the last week leading up to the show’s premiere.
What a safe neighbourhood.
– Tammy & Victor open the clue. Detour. Movers or Shakers.
– In Movers, teams travel to Sanganeri Gate to Zorawar Singh. They will transport a really high stack of barrels by pedaling 1 1/2 miles on a bike. Once at Zorawar Singh, they will open the containers and search it for a small elephant in the hay which they will exchange for their next clue.
Why do you think nobody wanted to play Super Caesars Palace?
Or just earn forty rupees and spend it on a good quality Deku Shield.
– Tammy & Victor decide to shake it because if Asian-Americans have proved anything, it is that they are great dancers.
VICTOR: And putting on makeup, I hope Tammy and I are changing lawyer stereotypes.
Lawyers do not dance? And that was a stereotype. . .when?
VICTOR: I did not feel any discomfort begging for money in the streets.
Lawyers not uncomfortable with taking people’s money? Now -that- is a reinforced stereotype.
Best. Dancer. Ever.
– I can’t get over that they went from “putting on makeup breaks up a lawyer stereotype” followed by “I did not feel discomfort begging for other people’s money”.
– We cut to Mel feeding the camels. Kisha pours the first batch out of her cleavage.
MARK (pouring camel feed from bucket): Think smart. Think smart.
– Kisha notices Mel putting the hay in the basket. She realizes it is faster. Jaime and Margie copy them.
– Tammy & Victor keep dancing around amongst the crowd.
– And we see one of the strangest shots of a camel ever.
The camel looks like it is going into convulsions. So strange.
– The teams are now transporting everything correctly.
Jodi transporting stuff in India five years apart.
– Mel is the first one finished. The sixty-eight year old beat the five other teams. Most embarrassing defeat for five teams I have seen.
– Jaime is done in third. Margie is fourth. Kisha is fifth. They all enter cabs and follow each other. Mel complains of having hay fever.
Unfortunately Michael has no choice but to roll over it and hug the log in the process.
Kisha cannot help but laugh.
– Jodi is now finished. A Speed Bump is ahead. Christie has hope.
He is the East Indian version of Zach Galifanakis.
– Tammy & Victor read that they must take a taxi to the next pit stop–Jaigarh Fort. It is a fifteenth century fortress full of, you guessed it, monkeys.
– Mike decides they should do Shakers because Mel just suffered through heavy lifting. They are not really commanding the tips much like Chun Li did.
– Mark & Michael, Jaime & Cara, Kisha & Jen, and Margie & Luke are all in a row. Jaime complains about the honking. That would drive me nuts too.
– Mike has a slow motion moment of emotion as he loves that people are festive amidst the great deal of poverty.
– Everyone decides to do Shakers except for Mark & Michael who wish to use their strength that dropped them into sixth place by doing the Movers task.
Meanwhile in the Philippines. . .
– Jen lays down a casual rap chorus.
“I have no problem
dancing with a horse,
going into the streets,
acting a fool”.
Kisha & Jen used to play with ponies when they were younger, but for once the ponies are not imaginary.
– Guess who has the next slow motion emotional moment?
– Yep. Margie & Luke. He could not hear the music. The camera cuts the audio for their confessional as Luke tells us he cannot hear the music. He has to judge by people’s faces as to how to get money.
– I have noticed that Margie’s voice for Luke sounds like no 20-something-year old I have ever heard of. It makes me wonder what Luke’s voice would really sound like if he was not deaf. Margie’s voice for Luke sounds exactly how my mom’s voice is when she reads someone else’s written story online.
– Luke says he was relying moreso on his mother to collect the rupees.
– Mark & Michael show up to Movers. They both pedal on the streets as they label themselves a crazy Americans. Thanks to the ululation incident, that is not far from the truth.
They have to complete a Speed Bump! As TAR 12 and 13 have taught us, you cannot go through India without a Speed Bump.
Seriously. Three out of the five Speed Bumps thus far in series history have been held in India. Kynt & Vyxsin, Ken & Tina, and now Christie & Jodi. What up with that?
– In this Speed Bump, Christie & Jodi must take a taxi to the Kala Hanuman Temple. Once there they will decorate an elephant with coloured paint in preparation for a festival. Once that is done they can head back to the Detour.
– Christie is excited to see the elephant. This is a task straight out of TAR 2. It is as cool then as they do now.
– Kisha & Jen try to gain rupees in the streets. Jen runs into a guy who is working as a salesman. Clearly he does not understand the point of this task.
Just follow the road of monkeys to find Phil.
– Who is hanging out with the pit stop greeter this week?
Is he. . .?
Playing with a flute up his nose?
Fourteen seasons later and TAR has to resort to picking the local who plays the flute up his nose.
FIRST: TAMMY & VICTOR ^ up 1 from last week
– Tammy & Victor win by a mile yet again. Dammit Brad & Victoria. They have each won an ocean kayak which they say will be useful in San Francisco.
Nothing I want more than to wipe off the smirk on their silly overenthusiastic faces.
– Mel & Mike finish the Detour. Away they go. Mike comments on the lipstick on Margie’s teeth because it makes her look delirious.
– Jodi tears up and rambles about her daughter and how she will never quit.
– Jaime & Cara finish in third but cannot see their taxi. Julia Roberts is pissed.
Cara struggles on her invisible surfboard to search for him.
– Christie & Jodi finish the Speed Bump.
JAIME: Did he go sightseeing? Grab a cup of coffee? He left with our bags! We looked for twenty minutes. He stole our bags.
Nobody told me that such a thing as karma could exist in India!
– Margie & Luke finish up and pass them.
– Jaime & Cara finally find their cab driver. He is laughing as Roberts SCREAMS at him.
JAIME: HURRY! WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN! WHERE WERE YOU? WERE YOU PARKED A MILE AWAY?
(CARA gives him a light shove too.)
– Mark & Michael show up to the transport point as they unload the barrels. Kisha & Jen finish shaking.
He is having a little trouble with this task.
– Dramatic suspense music plays. We cut back and forth between Mark & Michael and Christie & Jodi. Heck, Mark & Michael could hide inside one of the barrels and not be noticed, let alone find a small elephant.
– Christie & Jodi count their rupees before they hatch as they need seven more.
SECOND: MEL & MIKE ^ 2 from last week
MIKE: He smoked the competition in their 20s.
MEL: That was better than a million dollars. When I make him proud, that is the price of being in this race.
– The searching for Mark & Michael continues.
MICHAEL: We are missing something, Mark. Yes, an elephant.
– Christie & Jodi are finished shaking and are in their taxi. The Finishing Point music plays. Mark & Michael have found the elephant. Mark makes some strange noises as he enters the taxi.
– Margie & Luke see teams coming up behind her in the taxi. All three taxis stop as the teams run around searching for the entrance and Phil.
THIRD: KISHA & JEN ^ 3 from last week
FOURTH: MARGIE & LUKE v 3 from last week
Stick around guys because there is something I want to talk to you guys about something that will happen two years from now. . .
– It is a showdown. It appears Christie & Jodi have a slight lead and will be spared elimination for the fifth time this season by a hair. So who will it be?
Mark & Michael are oblivious to how low they really are on the totem pole this season.
SIXTH: MARK & MICHAEL v 1 down from last week
– That means. . .
LAST: CHRISTIE & JODI – same as last week
They are out and indeed eliminated. Christie said it came at a time because she is about to start a family, and needed to do something for herself. Jodi rambles on more crap about her daughter. Phil encourages them to hug.
– Next Time on TAR: Teams go wild in Thailand. And the sweltering heat takes its toll on Margie.
RANK THE TEAMS:
Brad & Victoria
The sequel to Fran & Barry, but with improvised vision.
They did quite well by finishing in the middle of the pack both rounds. However, come round three and they made a mistake that far too many racers make:
Intentionally getting yourself on an earlier flight alone but the arrival time is in the middle of the night when you are bound to run into an equalizer.
Even if the 730pm flight panned out for Brad & Victoria, they would have been on the exact same 630am train as the other eight teams. What else should they expect at two o’ clock in the morning?
This is famously known as the error that Uchenna & Joyce made in All Stars where they ended up about twelve hours behind.
The episode was equally boring as the Uchenna & Joyce boot thanks to Brad & Victoria’s flight delay putting them on the mat roughly eight to twelve hours later. I wish we would know how their face was cut up. Did they both face plant on a twig?
Brad’s drug addiction is something we did not learn about until their final appearance. I am not sure why production did not want to incorporate it into his edit beyond the ten second mention, but I must admit that not bashing us over the head with that fact made Brad & Victoria much more ‘real’ than the other teams.
It is too bad that they were gone early because they are one of the 50+ year old couples that have a legitimate chance to win The Amazing Race. Those teams appear rarely on the race.
Steve & Linda
I wish I could have done more to make the comparisons of Steve to Goofy. Sadly there is only so much you can do in two rounds.
The lesson here is that Linda is terrible at racing. I think her only skill was spotting the yellow sign. Otherwise she qualifies for the short list as one of the weakest racers in TAR history.
I should note that Steve & Linda DO NOT have an abusive relationship. The screen caps and the yelling and the crying just make it appear that way.
I found them to be more ‘real’ and entertaining than Preston & Jennifer. Other than that they had zero business being on a show as competitive as TAR. It is a miracle that they even made it to round two overall.
Preston & Jennifer
Before I re-watched this season I remember them for nothing except the piggyback ride in the final seconds of the episode.
In fact, their inability to piggyback on the pack is what did them in. They couldn’t even find the first train station and were saved by the 745am departure time.
Preston & Jennifer may be one of the worst 20-something mactor couples in terms of being able to perform well at TAR.
a) They couldn’t find a train station that everyone else found.
b) They must have sucked at driving to end up on the last flight
c) They screwed up a physical challenge such as transporting cheese.
d) They were at the pit stop location before Christie & Jodi, but ran into the wrong direction.
e) A piggyback ride was believed to be necessary in the first round’s final seconds.
There really is nothing this team could do well and definitely deserve finishing in dead last for TAR 14.
Production really wanted to have their next Nathan & Jennifer judging by a couple of their ridiculous arguments, but it is tough to have another Nathan & Jennifer when you cast a team who struggles with every dimension to the race.
Christie & Jodi
They would be ranked higher, but it is for what Jodi does in the future that her and Christie are brought this low.
Christie’s bubbly moments were unlike what virtually anybody could bring to the TAR franchise. She was unintentionally funny.
Jodi was way too serious and just. . .ugh, no sense of humour at all. Then she manages to screw up a season down the road.
Plus Jodi was terribly skilled as a racer. The only time her and Christie had a decent finish is when they were lucky to be at the correct airport to head into Krasnoyarsk alone with two other teams.
And those two teams? Kisha & Jen and Mark & Michael.
Jodi could possibly be the worst racer we have encountered in the TAR franchise to make it as far as seventh.
Amanda & Chris/Kris & Jon
I did not like how they were the only returning players in this cast. If you are going to bring people back, it should be in an all-star format. No different with Survivor and Big Brother.
I seriously have nothing to say about Amanda & Kris. Like. . .what the f— is there to say?
RANK THE LEGS:
1) Los Alamitos, California -> Stechelberg, Switzerland
I give kudos to production for allowing their thrill-seeking task to be out of the way early. Doing the second highest bungee jump in the world is certainly no small feat. Believe it or not this was the second bungee jump they have done in Switzerland.
This really needed to be a longer premiere. It truly is a shame that we could not see the first scramble to the airport nor seeing teams interact with each other before the lying and deceiving would begin. Seeing teams have fun before flying to the first route marker is one of my favourite parts to each season.
There was no Detour because production wanted teams to carry cheese down a steep hill instead. Production knew they had struck gold because this had one of the most screen cap intensive scenes in the history of my blog. There is something about people falling on their butt, scooting on their butt, and rogue wheels of cheese crashing through Swiss houses that led to lots of laughter.
Overall, this was a very solid leg, and will probably be my favourite by TAR 14 standards.
2) Bran, Romania -> Krasnoyarsk, Russia
A battle for flights at the beginning was great. Four flight paths for eight teams? You do not see that happen too often.
But that collapsed when all teams were connecting on the same Moscow flight. However, for a relatively unexplained reason, teams were split between two Moscow airports to head to Krasnoyarsk. I think half of the teams were dropped off at the domestic airport while the other half were at the international airport.
The time difference was roughly four hours between flights. The equalizer at the dam was reasonable because it opened at 8:30am and stayed open relatively late.
Anyways, I loved the wood stacking and window constructing Detour. It is a Detour that could be used in Siberia or northern Canada. Both tasks appeared rather difficult. The falling stacks of wood was rather amusing.
The group of people at the Detour camping out as they eat strange food and laughing at the falling stacks as well as the drunken lady who was dancing and singing the whole time. I have never seen people so energetic in the morning.
The Roadblock added an extra layer to what was becoming a tired task. They have used multiple bobsled runs in the past where all they had to do was complete it under a specific time limit. The addition of coming up with a Russian last name that does not require you to know his name, and instead use logical reasoning, was a refreshing change to the task.
The introduction of the Blind U-Turn is a change I do not particularly mind. Whether it is a Blind U-Turn or have its senses fully functional does not matter much to me. However I do not understand why its use had to be hyped up at the start of the episode.
The only con to the episode was how much airtime Margie & Luke received, but I guess that is expected from a team that production wanted to be the first three-timers in TAR history.
And the round in Siberia proved that it is drastically different from the previous four Russian rounds in TAR where they spent it in major cities west of the Urals.
3) Novosibirsk, Russia -> Jaipur, India
It is somehow in the top half out of the first six legs of the season. As much as I rag on production sending teams to India for the eleventh leg in TAR history, they were able to come up with some unique tasks. In fact it beat the India rounds from TAR 12 and 13.
The tasks were original except for the Speed Bump. Feeding camels was neat to see before they go on to be a bunch of divas in Abu Dhabi.
Jaime freaking out at taxi drivers for no good reason was great too.
The sweltering heat really took its toll on teams. I just wish the camel task and the Shakers tasks were a bit tougher.
But do you know how they have run out of ideas for India? Because they decided to plop a red phone next to a sacred tree. I never thought production would stoop so low as to make teams listen to a call centre.
Mark & Michael provided most of the entertainment this round as they were oblivious to their awful jokes and their offensive ululating like they were doing a bad Leo & Jamal impersonation.
The two huge negatives are the over-the-top Margie & Luke moments of emotion, and yet another freakin’ “there is poverty but they are all so harmonious” clips. There must be an hour of that footage total that has aired on TAR over the years.
But why this leg is up to number three for the time being is because of two things:
– Man spontaneously kicked by camel.
– Pit stop greeter playing a flute up his nose.
4) Salzburg, Austria -> Bran, Romania
Gymnastics. Loading up a gypsy cart. Minimal equalizers. A quote from Young Frankenstein. Running aimlessly through the woods. A new country. Scrambling for the best flights.
These are all makings of a great round of TAR. In fact I would have ranked this as the best round of the season by far because this is the only new country of the season and the tasks were great.
But then it had to be ruined by showing Tammy & Victor for the majority of the episode! Just look at the confessional counts of the episode. For once Margie & Luke were pushed to the side in favour of Tammy & Victor of all people. We saw a minimum of a five minute breakdown of each of their tasks.
Production is trying way too hard to make us like Tammy & Victor. It is not like they were hidden in the first two episodes either. Why keep showing us a team that mildly annoys us and has a personality that is impossible for the viewers to identify with as they watch?
To make things worse, the only team other than Brad & Victoria to be shown was. . .virtually no one. We had the first Jaime blow-up, a bit of Kris & Jon because of their blunder, and Mel & Mike’s victory.
But other than that it is impossible to think of a single thing that the other teams did. It was entirely from the perspective of Brad & Victoria and Tammy & Victor.
Ugh. They ruined the best round of the race by doing this. Now it is an episode that many TAR viewers have forgotten because Tammy & Victor are people you try your absolute best to forget!
5) Krasnoyarsk, Russia -> Novosibirsk, Russia
The underwear run should have been longer and more gruelling. No navigation to the pit stop was a bit annoying (unless you were Mark & Michael).
Too much focus on Luke and Victor yet freakin’ again.
Not seeing teams check out of the pit stop annoyed me.
The snowplows were far easier than the bride task. Like people who never drive cars were completing the snowplows on their first try.
The only thing that saves this round is that teams had to drive themselves to a couple of route markers using the Lada and struggling with a stick shift. It shocks me that there will always be players who do not learn how to drive a stick upon entering the race!
And another indoor pit stop at a theatre two rounds in a row was repetitive. These two rounds have been molded into one in my memory for the past five years. I thought the last round was going to be underwear running and the bobsled Chekhov puzzle, but realized that those were both Roadblocks.
Two rounds in a row in not only the same country, but also the same climate, and also using identical locations for the pit stop really drags down this episode.
Oh, and it was a non-elimination.
6) Stechelberg, Switzerland -> Salzburg, Austria
The round was constructed with zero equalizers. I do not understand why we needed a two minute dedication to Margie & Luke at the start of the episode, but for some reason it was there.
The Roadblock was your usual paragliding task, but seeing it reduced to a one hour jog down the mountain made for some boring television to the point that production did not include any of it except for Linda’s wrong turn on TV.
We saw the growing gap between Kisha & Jen. Seeing Jen’s increasing levels of frustration with Kisha’s older siblingitis was fun to watch.
Watching Mel narrate ten minutes of the episode was annoying because you knew that he is only narrating due to the minor celebrity status of himself and Mike. The part where Mike tries to scale the gate was definitely worthy of being on TV as Phil looks on trying not to laugh.
Pie throwing acting as a needle in the haystack task was boring. The Segway obstacle course was overly linear and straightforward to the point that barely any of the footage made it on TV.
Seeing the woodcutters was neat. The pit stop location was gorgeous.
Mark & Michael being idiots by not asking for a cell phone inside the cab was amusing.
Then watching Steve & Linda’s interactions for the whole round was definitely the meat and potatoes of the episode. Linda’s performance in these two rounds qualifies her as one of the worst racers in terms of ability to appear in the show’s history. Wonderful people, but Steve & Linda were not built for TAR.
The only person with worse abilities than Linda are the abilities of the casting director for TAR 18.
The trend of seasons that visit Europe are weak overall does not slow down thanks to the kajillionth trip to Germany and Austria.
P.S. When this episode aired on TV I was quite sleepy. Rewatching it today and that has not changed.
P.P.S. What was up with the one minute dedication to Margie & Luke between the ‘Previously On’ and Intro segments? Ridiculous.
Bilal & Sa’eed N/A
— F minus–
12th Debra & Steve 12.0
12th Gina & Sylvia 12.0
11th Preston & Jennifer 11.0
11th Anita & Arthur 11.0
11th Ari & Staella 11.0
11th John Vito & Jill All Stars 11.0
11th Vipul & Arti 11.0
11th John & Scott 11.0
11th Ryan & Chuck 11.0
11th Team Seinfeld/Avi & Joe 11.0
11th Dennis & Erika 11.0
11th Deidre & Hilary 11.0
11th Matt & Ana 11.0
10th Lisa & Joni 10.0
10th Kevin & Drew All Stars 10.0
10th A Black Family 10.0
— F +–
10th Steve & Linda 9.5
10th Anthony & Stephanie 9.5 (Why them?????)
10th Megan & Heidi 9.5 (Wow. They sucked.)
10th Kate & Pat 9.0
9th David & Mary All Stars 9.0
9th Peggy & Claire 9.0
10th Meredith & Maria 9.0
10th Dennis & Andrew 9.0 FF
9th Marianna & Julia 8.33
10th Russell & Cindy 8.33
8th Don & Mary Jean 8.2
10th Kellie & Jamie 8.0
10th Kim & Leslie 8.0
8th Danielle & Dani 7.8 – Yielded
8th Marisa & Brooke 7.75 – Sucked.
9th Jim & Marsha 7.33
8th Aiello Family 7.0
8th Tom & Terry 7.0
8th Dave & Margaretta 7.0
9th Lena & Kristy 7.0
10th Hope & Norm 7.0
9th Brad & Victoria 6.6666666666 – Fran & Barry 2.0
7th Christie & Jodi 6.6666666 – Mark of the Casting Director Devil
9th Rogers Family 6.5
8th Susan & Patrick 6.5
6th Lenny & Karyn 6.43
9th Wanda & Desiree 6.25
7th Aja & Cabbie 6.2
7th Paul & Amie 6.2
8th Steve & Dave 6.2 FF
6th David &Mary 6.13 FF
10th Ernie & Jeena 6.0
11th Amanda & Chris 6.0
6th Andre & Damon 5.86
7th Dave & Lori 5.83
5th Kami & Karli 5.8
8th Michael & Kathy 5.8
7th Cyndi & Russell 5.8
7th Shana & Jennifer 5.8 Used U-Turn
9th Heather & Eve 5.75
5th Nancy & Emily 5.67
6th Gaghan Family 5.5
10th Alison & Donny 5.5
6th Tian & Jaree 5.43 FF
8th Sahil & Prashant 5.4 FF
4th Meredith & Gretchen 5.36
7th Monica & Sheree 5.33 FF
7th Marshall & Lance 5.33
9th Debbie & Bianca 5.33
7th Gus & Hera 5.29
6th Joe & Bill All Stars 5.25
8th Bob & Joyce 5.25
8th Lorena & Jason 5.25 U-Turned
3rd Andrew & Dan 5.18
7th Silver & Gold 5.17
6th Kelly & Christy 5.14
7th Ray & Deana – 5.0 FF
7th Melody & Sharon 5.0
9th Steve & Josh 5.0 – FF
9th Pat & Brenda 5.0 – FF
9th Mark & Bill 5.0 – Wah.
5th Fran & Barry 4.89
6th Howard & Sahran 4.88
–C + —
3rd Lyn & Karlyn 4.85 – Yielded
5th John Vito & Jill 4.8 – FF
7th Teri & Ian All Stars 4.83
7th Schroeder Family 4.75
6th Lake & Michelle 4.71 – Used Yield
6th Brian & Greg 4.71
5th Erwin & Godwin 4.70
3rd Adam & Rebecca 4.69 FF and Used Yield and Yielded
9th Duke & Lauren 4.67
5th Lori & Bolo 4.6 – FF
2nd Teri & Ian 4.53 – FF
8th Amanda & Kris – 4.5 Blind U-Turned
5th Uchenna & Joyce All Stars 4.33 – FF
8th Shola & Doyin 4.25 – FF
3rd Ray & Yolanda 4.23
3rd Nicolas & Donald 4.18 FF and U-Turned
4th Linda & Karen 4.17
3rd Charla & Mirna All Stars 4.15
6th Mary & Peach 4.14 (Two failed FF attempts.)
5th Paolo Family 4.13 FF and Used Yield
5th Lynn & Alex 4.11
5th Andy & Laura 4.00 – Yielded
3rd David & Jeff 4.00 – FF
4th Oswald & Danny 4.00 – FF
5th Gary & Dave 3.89 – FF
2nd Kelly & Jon 3.85
1st Zabrina & Joe Jer 3.77
2nd Sandy & Francesca 3.77 – Used Yield
4th Jon & Al 3.73
6th Charla & Mirna 3.71
3rd Blake & Paige 3.69 – FF
5th Millie & Chuck 3.67 FF
5th Kynt & Vyxsin 3.63 Used Yield
1st Eric & Danielle All Stars 3.62 – Yielded Twice
4th Mardy & Marsio 3.58 FF
6th Jonathan & Victoria 3.56
4th Joseph & Monica 3.50 – Yielded
3rd Andrew & Syeon 3.46
1st Freddy & Kendra 3.46 – Used Yield and Yielded
2nd Ronald & Christina 3.45
4th Nathan & Jennifer 3.40 – Never finished in 1st
1st Chris & Alex 3.38 – FF
1st Chip & Kim 3.38 – Used Yield
4th Kevin & Drew 3.36 – FF
3rd Brandon & Nicole 3.31
5th Terence & Sarah 3.25
1st TK & Rachel 3.18
4th Godlewski Family 3.18
4th Dustin & Kandice 3.17 – Used Yield
7th Peter & Sarah 3.17
9th Aubrey & Jacqueline 3.17
3rd Weaver Family 3.15 – Yielded Twice
1st Reichen & DK 3.15 – FF
1st Uchenna & Joyce 3.15 FF
4thToni & Dallas 3.10 Still in Russia
4th Derek & Drew 3.10 – FF
2nd Rob & Kim 3.08 – FF
3rd Ron & Kelly 3.00 – Yielded
6th Azaria & Hendekea 3.00
4th Hayden & Aaron 2.92
2nd Dustin & Kandice All Stars 2.92 – Used Yield
2nd Bransen Family 2.85
1st Linz Family 2.77 – Used Yield
3rd Joe & Bill 2.76 – FF
–BEST OF THE BEST–
8th Rob & Amber All Stars 2.75 – Used Yield
1st Flo & Zach 2.69 – FF
3rd Ken & Gerard 2.69 – FF
4th Oswald & Danny All Stars 2.67 FF x2 and Used Yield
2nd Ken & Tina 2.64 FF
2nd Colin & Christie 2.54 – FF and Yielded
2nd Tara & Wil 2.53 – FF
1st Rob & Brennan – 2.46 FF
1st BJ & Tyler – 2.46 FF and Used Yield
1st Nick & Starr 2.45 FF
1st Tyler & James – 2.38 FF
2nd Frank & Margarita 2.38 – FF
2nd Kris & Jon 2.38
2nd Rob & Amber 2.31
2nd Eric & Jeremy 1.69 FF
Combined Team Averages (Repeats Only)
11 legs David & Mary 6.91 FF
11 legs John Vito & Jill 5.36 FF
18 legs Danielle 4.78
19 legs Teri & Ian 4.63 FF
13 legs Kevin & Drew 4.38 FF
20 legs Charla & Mirna 4.00 None
21 legs Joe & Bill 3.71 FF
22 legs Uchenna & Joyce 3.64 FF x2
*31 legs Eric & Danielle 3.48 FF
23 legs Oswald & Danny 3.30 FF x3!
25 legs Dustin & Kandice 3.04 None
26 legs Eric 2.65 FF
17 legs Rob & Amber 2.41 None
* I determined Eric & Danielle’s average in this last section by adding up all of their individual points from TAR 9, then adding up their total points in All Stars and dividing it by 31.