SINGAPORE – PHILIPPINES – HONG KONG – NEW ZEALAND – JAPAN – SOUTH KOREA – GERMANY – CZECH REPUBLIC – HUNGARY – SOUTH AFRICA
Previously on TAR: It all started in Singapore where ten teams of two set off on a race around the world. Immediately teams’ nerves were put to the test as they traversed buildings on a rope at a frightening 180 metres above the ground, and so they discovered their next destination. Edwin & Monica and Henry & Terri failed to communicate. They struggled to find a marked cab, and missed the first flight.
Oh boy. This is a long summary.
Eating a local delicacy caused some teams to choke, but it was Pamela & Vanessa who had the lead and were first to the pit stop. Edwin & Monica finished last but were not eliminated.
On the second leg, teams steered carabao through a muddy rice field. Pamela & Vanessa misread the clue and were looking for a Caltex station in the wrong town. Edwin tried putting a bike together that was too hard to handle. And in the end they were eliminated.
On the third leg, Daichi & Sawaka were first to discover that they would be heading straight to New Zealand. And in transit Henry & Terri’s relationship began to feel the strain. At the Roadblock, teams had to take a leap. And Terri started to have second thoughts. At the Detour, Singaporean Sophie blamed French Born Aurelia for holding them back. Things didn’t improve when they drove 200 kilometres in the wrong direction.
Pamela & Vanessa had a close encounter with a local. Brett & Kinar also struggled with the rock climbing challenge. An hours of operation at an alternative Detour meant they could not finish the race.
Teams then drove to Rotorua where the race became speed on water. Weaving a Maori headband slowed Marc & Rovilson down but not as much as Henry & Terri. Changing to the stick task was even more of a challenge for the team that struggled with teamwork. Singaporean Sophie & French Born Aurelia started the leg hours behind other teams. They faced an hours of operation at the first challenge and could not finish the race.
On the fifth leg, teams traveled nearly 9, 000 kilometres to Japan. Daichi & Sawaka took the lead but just finding locations was Henry & Terri’s biggest challenge. At the Roadblock, Vanessa struggled to solve an ice puzzle in minus five degrees Celsius. But all teams became level when waiting for a bullet train to their next destination.
In Fukuoka, Diane & Ann were first to the “pit stop” but only to discover they were still racing. Teams continued the race by ferry to South Korea where they were immediately held up by taxi drivers who did not understand English. At the first Yield of the race, Henry & Terri yielded Marc & Rovilson. They forgot the boys were always ahead of them as they were first to the pit stop for the fourth time.
On the way to the Roadblock, Diane & Ann sent Daichi & Sawaka in the wrong direction. Ultimately sealing their fate.
In the next leg teams drove across South Korea. Marc & Rovilson convinced local police to escort them out of town. While Paula & Natasha needed police to help them with more serious problems. Vanessa’s wrong turn made Pamela lose her patience. And Henry & Terri’s relationship hit a breaking point. And they finished last but were not eliminated. Henry & Terri left on the next leg with no money.
Teams traveled more than 8, 000 kilometres to Germany only to find out they were heading straight for the Czech Republic. While waiting for the overnight train, Rovilson raised some spare cash in a strip bar while Henry & Terri lagged behind looking for a flight to Europe.
In Prague, it was searching for a holey statue (yes, holEy) that left Pamela & Vanessa behind. The smaller girl teams struggled as knights dressed in armour. Henry & Terri could not make up time for the previous leg and were last. But once again avoided elimination.
In the next leg, teams counted steps to the top of a tower in Prague, but for Paula & Natasha it just didn’t add up. Adrian & Collin chose to team up with Marc & Rovilson at the Intersection. And Pamela & Vanessa joined Ann & Diane. Paula & Natasha felt let down by the sisters, and they faced a long wait for Henry & Terri who were still five hours behind the other teams.
When teams parted ways, Marc & Rovilson once again beat Adrian & Collin to the pit stop. But after jumping ten metres, Vanessa suffered a concussion and could not remember what to do. When Henry & Terri arrived at the Intersection, Paula & Natasha took control. When they finally parted ways, it was perseverance that won Paula & Natasha the only taxi around. And Henry & Terri were eliminated.
Teams continued to race to Budapest. Adrian & Collin found an earlier train and took the lead. At the Detour, gathering hay was dusty work. And Pamela & Vanessa struggled to milk a goat. Adrian & Collin maintained their lead to the pit stop. But at the Roadblock, Natasha miscounted while flying through the air and Mark was once again able to fly ahead.
Finding the correct car park at the pit stop was an emotional challenge for Vanessa. But it was Paula & Natasha who were last. The next leg the Fast Forward became a race between rivals Marc & Rovilson and Adrian & Collin. Once again Adrian & Collin finished first. Marc & Rovilson yielded Ann & Diane.
But it wasn’t enough to help Paula & Natasha.
In the twelfth leg, teams traveled more than 9, 000 kilometres to South Africa where Vanessa put the pedal to the metal. Painting an orphanage touched the mothers Ann & Diane. It was a Detour of elephant dung that sorted the girls from the boys. Ann & Diane could not catch up and were eliminated.
Tonight on the season finale one of these three teams (Marc & Rovilson, Adrian & Collin, or Pamela & Vanessa) will take home 100, 000 US dollars as winners of The Amazing Race Asia.
And that will be discovered in about two minutes because that recap took up ninety percent of the airtime.
Okay. It was really eight minutes and forty-one seconds. The longest season finale recap in TAR history, I would assume.
– Intro time. We have less than forty minutes to go in the episode already. This is going to have a shorter amount of racing time even compared to the American TAR franchise.
Let the games begin!
– Allan introduces us to the game reserve as the twelfth pit stop.
– Marc & Rovilson, who were the first to arrive at 5:09pm, will depart at 5:09am.
They read that they must drive to the District Six Museum in Cape Town. It was the first Black community that were forcibly removed from their homes during the years of Apartheid. Once at the museum, teams must find a Sony Vile where they must unlock the password using the street names at the District Six Museum. Once they enter the correct street name, they will receive their next clue.
That could not be a worse name for a street in the Apartheid era.
Is that really the Sony Vile?
The tower of street names in District Six.
– Marc says their goals were to be Final Three, survive the leg in their country, and not be eliminated first. Rovilson finds District Six on his map.
– Adrian & Collin depart second at 5:25am. Adrian says their goal was just to reach Final Three. He will still see the others as competitors all the way to the finish line. He reminds us that all teams have won a leg.
ADRIAN: Our goal was to be in the top tree.
Three, Adrian. Three.
Really, Collin? This round is the climax? Who knew.
– Pamela & Vanessa depart last at 5:34am. Twenty-five minutes from first to last. Pamela re-reminds us that the three teams at the end are the only teams who have won a leg.
Both Adrian & Collin and Pamela & Vanessa fail to mention that Marc & Rovilson won eight of the twelve legs between them. They also forget Daichi & Sawaka won round five.
VANESSA: Being in the top tree is like winning the prize itself.
Do Asians have as tough of a time with the letter ‘h’ as with the letter ‘l’?
– The clouds emerge as it gets brighter out. Vanessa imitates Pamela’s “straight Vanessa, straight” that has become all too familiar after thirteen rounds on the road.
MARC: This is the one we want.
ROVILSON: It is like we are scripted to win this.
You don’t say.
– Vanessa asks if they get penalized if they break the law of the country.
Yes, I believe first degree murder may get you some backlash during the race.
– Marc & Rovilson see the sign.
Woo! District Six Museum! I wonder what happens if you take a right.
Ah, the District 9 Museum. I guess this does not come into formation until 2009 which is why it is not apart of TAR Asia 2.
– Pamela & Vanessa drive in the emergency lane to pass by a ton of traffic. Lots of honking.
– Commercial break.
– We resume with Pamela & Vanessa driving in the emergency lane to pass by a ton of traffic. Lots of honking.
I suppose the honking is warranted.
– Marc & Rovilson enter the building. We see that hours of operation are 8:00am to 7:00pm, but it does not matter because it is already past 8:00am. They were driving on the road for well over two hours. Seeing them huddled around the computer entering words is about as exciting as it sounds.
Summary of what has happened so far.
– They go through things like Richmond Street, Chapel, Russell Street, and finally Vincent Street. Is it Vincent Street?
Much like Sony’s Playstation, even the computer has a long loading time before retrieving the clue. So the next screen shows their next clue, right?
“In 1966, District Six was declared Whites only. . .blah blah blah. . .”
That is one mighty fine paragraph that you boys read to my satisfactory.
– Marc & Rovilson open it up. It is a Detour. No final destination city before the Detour? That is bothersome.
Wu sporting the Nike sWUsh.
ALLAN: Cape Town is considered the gemstone capital of the world. Teams that take on this task could find themselves stuck looking for a rock in a hard place.
Yeah. That is an excessive number of gemstones.
– In Assemble, teams must locate Bishop Master’s Wires and Bead Craft where they will learn how to make an African art radio. African art started out as a way for making toys for children.
Look out Allan! Open your eyes! You walked straight into that dolphin.
ALLAN: Teams must be wired soundly if they want to make this wire radio sing songs.
Allan passing off that pun with all the charm in the wurld.
– Marc & Rovilson choose Search. Adrian & Collin and Pamela & Vanessa run into each other at the museum. They stand next to each other at the computers. Pamela makes the mistake of saying each street name aloud for Adrian (and maybe Collin) to hear.
Such an exciting showdown.
Yeah. He will be switching soon.
– Marc & Rovilson have already switched. Pamela is now working the computer. So is Adrian. Marc & Rovilson are now making the wire radios.
ROVILSON: This would actually match Marc’s g-string.
Marc cracks up when he hears the secret is revealed for those of us at home.
– The instructor for the Assemble task starts telling them stories about how he made them when they were young.
“When I was a young warthog. . .”
– Rovilson interrupts him if he made the first ever pair of wire headphones back in the 80s.
Marc & Rovilson demonstrate the invention.
– Adrian & Collin are second to crack the password. We hear Adrian read the same paragraph.
Asking if they have “good” eyes is a bit misleading for the task. Another thing that is misleading is the part about there being hundreds of thousands of semi-precious gemstones.
– Of course Adrian & Collin also choose to search. Marc & Rovilson continue putting the radio together. Pamela & Vanessa crack the password and read the paragraph. Adrian & Collin show up to Search.
ADRIAN: We will give ourselves ten minutes.
Yeah, like they will find anything.
I spoke too soon.
– Pamela & Vanessa decide to do the Assemble task. They feel like they are good with their hands. Vanessa suddenly freaks out when she realizes she is driving on the street too fast.
Vanessa makes her Vanessa face when she is stressed.
– Marc & Rovilson have already put the radio together. They start dancing and invite Bishop to dance.
“Not all Black men can dance, you racist.”
Or it may just be a Bishop thing. This Bishop cannot dance either.
– They read that they must drive themselves to the FC Kapstadt Soccer Pitch. It is next to the construction site for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Once they score three goals from the penalty line, they will receive their next clue.
I should note that Marc pronounces it as ‘Fihfa’ rather than ‘feefa’.
The penalty line. And is that player wearing a Caltex jersey? Is it like Canada where everyone wears jerseys provided by the fast food chain Wendy’s?
I wonder how that goalkeeper will block the shots?
If it were John Vito, he would block it. . .with his face!
Even the soccer balls are sponsoured by Caltex. Even Wendy’s would have enough self-respect to leave the soccer ball alone.
– Marc & Rovilson, guys who run a sports show, are more than willing to do this task. They run into Pamela & Vanessa who are just entering the store. We see Pamela & Vanessa and Adrian & Collin working at the different Detours.
Right on cue, Adrian.
Playing in a world cup stadium is not quite as we imagined it to be.
– Rovilson is at least hitting it towards the net, right?
That soccer ball is going to land in Namibia at this rate.
No goalie in the adjacent net? Rovilson outsmarts the challenge!
– Pamela & Vanessa keep working on the wiring. Pamela drops a “la”. Rovilson is still practicing with his shots.
ROVILSON: Hey listen, if we win 100, 000 and you lay down, I will spot you ten grand. . .pesos.
– Adrian & Collin have done the impossible. No freakin’ way.
Were they really that easy to find? Who else would have done well at this task?
Imma tell you something that you might not know about me Joe Logan. . .I find race rocks!
– Rovilson scores a goal. Marc has the second goal.
He is not even close to blocking that shot. Can he get those 10, 000 pesos now?
– Rovilson misses the following shot. Pamela & Vanessa think they will be finished within ten minutes. They are in a solid last place.
Who knew it would be so tough to wire a radio made of Marc’s G-string, the continent of Africa, and a stove top.
– ROVILSON: You know what, Marc? If you streak across naked, it might mess with him.
– Marc & Rovilson have their clue. They read they must ride quad bikes at the Atlantis Dunes along a flagged course on a twenty square kilometre radius to search for the correct clue. There are eighteen possible clue check points and only one of them will contain the clue.
That checkpoint is looking a bit pail.
Ah, there’s the clue.
We get to watch every team go through a possible seventeen Yields in the finale? How thrilling!
– Vanessa shows off her injury wile putting the radio together.
VANESSA: I could win the award for the most injured.
VANESSA: I knocked my tooth, I hurt my finger at the bungee, I lost my memory, what else. . .?
Did she seriously just fail to remember what else she injured after talking about her memory loss? That is so Vanessa.
“I hurt my finger, I lost my memory and. . .uh. . .that other thing.”
– She even catches onto it too.
VANESSA: I lost my memory so I miss some of the others.
– Adrian & Collin are both hopeless at soccer. Adrian talks about how he is indeed terrible at soccer. Collin screams with each individual kick like he is playing tennis.
Adrian is just another FC poseur.
– Commercial break.
– More Collin scream kicks as he scores the first goal. Pamela & Vanessa curse as they struggle with the radio. Rovilson pulls out an East Indian accent as he gets excited over beef jerky.
Beef jerky? Say what?
– Pamela & Vanessa have finished putting together the radio. Adrian scores the second goal. Collin has the third. They receive the clue. Away to Atlantis Dunes they go.
– Marc & Rovilson are now at Atlantis Dunes. Pamela & Vanessa drive by an outgoing Adrian & Collin. Pamela & Vanessa’s kicks are rarely elevated above the ground. Vanessa scores the first goal via rolling along the ground. Pamela scores the second goal which is barely above the ground.
– Marc & Rovilson aboard the ATVs. They are instructed how to operate it.
If you can just button up your shirt once more, that would be great.
Who knew he worked as a professional wrestler before becoming an ATV operator.
It would not be TAR Asia without riding on ATVs.
They look beneath the pail to see an hourglass.
Leave it to Marc & Rovilson to admire an hourglass figure.
ROVILSON: I feel like a storm trooper.
This hourglass is not the clues we’re looking for.
– Pamela & Vanessa score the third goal. Pamela trips up the wording. She asks if the bikes will fit four people. I assume she is saying that number because of the camera and sound operators.
– Adrian & Collin are now on the ATVs. Collin has a slow start. An ATV travels alongside Marc & Rovilson. Each hourglass represents three minutes. They see Adrian & Collin behind them.
You know what? Adrian & Collin can see Marc & Rovilson at an hourglass ahead and skip by them to save themselves three minutes. It is a huge advantage.
– These three minutes start to get old real fast. So what to do?
The pail can also be a hat.
ROVILSON: It gave us time to practice our sand angels, our sand dances, our sand head stands, and our donuts.
You mean sandstands. Ohohohoho.
– During the ride, Pamela & Vanessa pose one of life’s greatest questions.
“We don’t know it. We’re dumed!
A dune is where Adrian gets stuck and chokes at the race.
Choking just a bit more.
The ATV only came with three wheels, right?
– Marc & Rovilson try their hand at synchronized ATV jumping as they shout “ninja” together.
– Marc & Rovilson comment they are in the world’s largest kitty litter box. Adrian & Collin use brute strength to lift the ATV out of its hole.
Wow. That tire really was deep in the sand.
– Marc & Rovilson find an hourglass. They comment it is the biggest hourglass in the history of hourglasses.
I guess no one watched Mole 5. It makes Marc & Rovilson’s hourglass look like it came from Rick Moranis’ last film, “Honey, I Shrunk the Hourglass”.
– Pamela & Vanessa are now on the ATVs. Triumphant music plays as they move. They already have found an hourglass. Adrian & Collin find another one. And another. So do Pamela & Vanessa. Marc & Rovilson play on the ATVs while they wait for the sand to run out. They wonder why Adrian & Collin have not picked up the last two hourglasses.
ADRIAN: We decided not to choose the ones where they have already stepped on. We picked alternate ones.
ROVILSON: Sneaky little guys. Now it is turning into a chess game.
– Pamela & Vanessa complain about the length of each hourglass. Rovilson really goofs off on a dune. They have the clue.
ROVILSON: Don’t act like we found it. Wait here, bro. I am willing to wait until they pass by. Wanna take the gamble?
Let’s hope they think it is a yellow and black hourglass.
ADRIAN: They kept looking at us and we were looking at them.
Ready for one more mindgame, fellas?
You don’t faze us.
– Rovilson explains the process as they hope Adrian & Collin will drive past them. Pamela & Vanessa prepare for a downhill ride.
She did not sign up for this.
– Marc & Rovilson pretend the sand has run out as they drive away. Adrian & Collin turn over another hourglass.
More like the ATV problems run into him.
– Commercial break.
– Collin once again runs over to make sure he is alright. They flip back the ATV. Adrian is thankful the sand was soft. Adrian comes up with a wise idea.
Wise move, Mr. Yap.
– Marc & Rovilson are back at the entrance. They read that they must drive to Cape Point then make their way to the funicular. They will ride to the upper station. Once there they must walk to the Cape Point Historic Lighthouse. They then must tell the lighthouse keeper the country they think they will be traveling to next.
He is really into his role.
– Marc & Rovilson re-enter their car and drive away. Adrian & Collin reach the marked end and decide to go back to when Marc & Rovilson were waving at them and putting on a show. Sure enough Marc & Rovilson’s playing around somewhat worked. They just worked it a bit too hard.
– Marc & Rovilson have pulled over at a toll booth. Rovilson tells them not to help the other teams. However, he does it in a hilarious and fitting manner for South Africa.
ROVILSON: You’re going to see two more cars that look just like this. They’re going to have the red and yellow stickers. They’re poachers.
– Pamela & Vanessa scream multiple times for some unknown reason. They continue trekking along in the ATVs. I thought they screamed because they found the clue, but really they were just screaming for the sake of screaming. More searching.
Run free, Expresso! The banana hoard must be saved.
– Pamela runs into the same spot where Adrian is crushed. Luckily she just rolls back down the hill.
VANESSA: Do you need help?
PAMELA: Of course I need help!
– Adrian & Collin show up to the funicular. They say that Marc & Rovilson are not waiting for the funicular with them because Marc & Rovilson ran down.
ROVILSON: Show me the box!
Think we jump into the ocean to search for the box?
– Vanessa’s ATV is stuck because she lost momentum. Pamela is helping her push.
If only we were Gym Sisters, this would be no problem.
– Pamela & Vanessa decide to use their muscles to lift it. They succeed.
Or they are just constipated. We don’t really know.
– Adrian & Collin are in the funicular. Collin celebrates when they see Marc & Rovilson still running along the steps.
I never thought I would say this, but I think TAR Asia 2 has the record for most funiculars used in a season.
At this rate they will run into Reichen & Chip who are looking for a gorge.
– Pamela & Vanessa pick up a clue at the sand dune. They just have to drive the ATVs back now. Adrian & Collin run up the steps to the lighthouse.
Well, that was easy.
– They read that they must fly to Singapore. Once there they must take a taxi to the Raffles Statue. There they will find the clue near the Asian Civilizations Museum where it all began.
Raffles? His name was RAFFLES? What an odd name.
– Rovilson crowns it the stairmaster from hell as him and Marc still search. Pamela compares the ATV to a jet ski rather than a bicycle. He says it is like a jet ski on sand.
– Rovilson sees a funicular. He decides him and Marc will ride it to the top. Sure enough after running up several more steps that Cape Town loves stairs.
MARC: We guess Singapore.
He acts as if they are discovering the quadratic formula for the first time.
No excuse for any lighthouse keeper to be out of shape when working here.
– PAMELA: I predict the task will have something to do with water.
Only if you are Marc & Rovilson.
– It is dark now. Marc & Rovilson and Adrian & Collin are both at the airport while Pamela & Vanessa have just arrived at the lighthouse.
VANESSA: When we found out we were going to Singapore, there was still hope to do better.
Better than dead last? I should hope so.
– All three teams will be on the twelve o’ clock flight to Singapore. The airport scene is about ten seconds long. I suppose it is necessary when only fourteen minutes of airtime remains.
– Allan tells us that the journey is 9, 700 kilometres long.
Yeah. A Canadian Eurodance group from 1999 and 2000. I know my audience is limited for that reference.
– The flight lands in Singapore. Only fourteen minutes of airtime left yet we have a 48 minute episode on our hands. Production played this all wrong.
– Marc & Rovilson run ahead of the other two teams as they successfully convince a guy to not get into his taxi. Adrian & Collin are second into a taxi. Pamela & Vanessa are last. It is already night time. Rovilson tells his taxi driver to push the speed limits of the country. Adrian & Collin, who are from Singapore, know their driver is more comfortable speaking Mandarin.
Yes. Please support Team Singapore as they hunt down the gold medal for TAR Asia 2.
Adrian has fired the starting gun.
ROVILSON: C’mon, Charles! The cab driver in front of you just called you ‘slow’ and ‘ugly’! I would take offense to that.
So much for homefield advantage.
– Rovilson reads that they must travel by taxi to Tanjong Beach on Sentosa Island where they will find their next taxi.
I have a feeling this will not open until dawn.
– Rovilson & Marc get back into their taxi. They see Adrian & Collin on the streets because they did not keep their taxi. Instead Adrian & Collin wasted several minutes because they repeated their same error from the Intersection.
– Pamela & Vanessa are last to the Raffles statue.
ROVILSON: The race continues. It is seven am. We do more before seven am than most people do all day.
“Because you are all lazy sacks of s— who read a fifty page blog about people traveling around the world rather than getting on a plane yourself!
– VANESSA: We’re gonna win?
PAMELA: As long as Vanessa is not driving, we’re gonna win right?
I like how Pamela passes this off in the most reassuring and most non-offensive way possible. It is like she is calming Vanessa down by telling her how much she sucks.
Vanessa will likely forget what Pamela said in about ten seconds, anyway.
– ADRIAN: I hope the boys are stuck in traffic.
– Allan Wu explains to us the final Roadblock of the season. They must place the flags in order of when they were visited on the race.
ROVILSON: Who can flag their worldly knowledge?
And that is my final pun of the season. I’m out!
– Rovilson has to do the Roadblock.
Hopefully he picks the Jamaican flag as opposed to the South African one.
– Marc is confused why Rovilson is holding the Slovakian flag.
ROVILSON’S FLAGS: PHILIPPINES – SOUTH AFRICA
The pen and paper come out.
– I should note that no team has ever entered the final Roadblock task that ends up not only being flag memory, but also entering it with the lead and the best team average in TAR history at the time.
Oh. Precedence is not in Marc & Rovilson’s favour. Perhaps Rovilson can come back and race with the blonde-haired woman he found in Tokyo to win the season?
– Pamela & Vanessa are second to the Roadblock. Who has to do the memory task?
– Adrian is hoping it is not the pit stop and wants to pick up for more lost time. Marc and Pamela are both annoyed as they see wrong flags go up. Marc hates to see the Australian flag go up. He is frustrated, but knows it is far more frustrating for Rovilson.
MARC (quietly): That’s the Australian flag you idiot!
You can’t tell your white snowflakes from your red ones.
That 100k may be slipping away.
The migraine is setting in.
– Commercial break.
– Adrian & Collin show up to the Roadblock in last. Collin is doing it. Will he perform better than fellow deaf contestant Luke did at the final Roadblock in TAR 14.
– Collin puts in Singapore first. Then Philippines. All three non-participants stand around in agony. Rovilson doubles up on two flags. His first check is incorrect. And his second. Vanessa’s first check is incorrect.
VANESSA: I actually forgot the Philippine flag which is so silly because the boys have it on their bag.
What flag? You mean this?
– We see Collin put in the Hong Kong flag next. So far so good. He explains why he is doing well.
Ah. That may help.
– Rovilson comments that Collin chucked all of the flags into holes like a ninja.
– I must admit that it has to be a record for shortest amount of time to complete the final Roadblock. Who would be a contender for it? Zach with the final Roadblock in TAR 3?
– Adrian reads the final clue. While he is reading aloud Collin shushes him three times. I am assuming Collin keeps shushing him because he does not know if Adrian is hushing his voice or not. Adrian for whatever reason never lowers his voice. I guess he assumes that Collin will not know if he complied with the request or not.
The more I listen to that clip the funnier it gets.
If this is the Rainbow Bridge does that mean Allan Wu is standing on. . .
The rainbow road?
– Adrian & Collin sound like super excited anime characters as they yell their destination at the cab driver in Chinese. It is incredible to see Adrian excited for the first time all season.
Think of all the steroids we can buy with that money!
Meanwhile Pamela is busy erecting the greatest sand castle known to man!
– Marc’s great reaction to Pamela & Vanessa having the clue?
– Pamela & Vanessa open and read the final clue.
Vanessa seems to have a confused expression by default.
MARC: You f—ing choked, Rov!
– The two leading teams are in the final taxi ride.
Whoa! What are you thinking, Collin?
They may overtake you. We do know that.
On what? You just told him to stop thinking about the race! What is he supposed to be focused on?
Much hope is found here.
– Rovilson talks it out.
ROVILSON: I think all of the Polynesian flowers means this flag is New Zealand.
Hong. . . Kong. . .
– Rovilson solves it. Marc runs to get the clue. They are booking it to the taxi. We hear honking on the road. Pamela & Vanessa will be amazed if they finish ahead of Marc & Rovilson for the first time since round one.
– A taxi pulls up to the Gardens. Who will it be?
“Time to get serious. No puns. I need to prove why I make the big bucks.”
– The non-biased cheering section composed of eliminated teams begins to cheer.
Even when it comes to clapping, Henry & Terri cannot be in sync with one another.
Masters of clapping after years of playing “if you’re sneaky sneaky and you know it, clap your hands”.
Singaporean Sophie insulted French Born Aurelia for not knowing how to clap, but luckily French Born Aurelia learned the English word for it just moments before the camera crew started filming.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Yes, production did indeed show Singaporean Sophie & French Born Aurelia last.
EDITOR’S NOTE #2: No Brett & Kinar to be found. Kinar probably went home to do an independent film with Chestface McGee or whoever the new co-star is in her new film.
Victory is theirs! Collin’s shirt going up et al.
The gold is always at the end of the rainbow.
Several small steps for men. . .one giant leap for their bank accounts.
No giant finish mat? Just a regular pit stop mat? Lame!
ALLAN: After traveling to ten countries, racing through fifteen cities, flying 51, 544 kilometres it gives me great pleasure to tell me you are the official winners of The Amazing Race.
It gives Allan great pleasure to tell you that you won?
How much balut did he eat during the final leg?
Winner winner Singaporean dinner.
Can’t breathe Collin. . .can’t breathe.
– Collin launches into how it was great to work together and work around it even though there was a lot of frustration. He describes the champions as a heavenly feeling.
Hey look! Kinar is there.
And Brett too! I guess production forgot to show them clapping. The angry e-mails to AXN is being sent to them as we speak.
– Pamela & Vanessa are excited to see the Gardens. I have never seen them sprint so fast before. They scream over the bridge. Sound like freakin’ maniacs. Adrian & Collin enthusiastically cheer them on.
– Pamela & Vanessa are AMAZED to hear that they finished second. Both of them are extremely stoked to hear that they not only lost the race, but that they defeated Marc & Rovilson.
– Allan says he is proud of them.
PAMELA: I learned I can be somebody better.
Better than. . .Vanessa?
– Vanessa is proud of them as a team and happy to be here second because it is an achievement on its own.
– Marc & Rovilson are LAST in their taxi.
ROVILSON: We envisioned the end of the race to be one of two ways–a glorious victory or a crash and burn.
The top two teams and Allan look on in a stern manner.
You know why the hug is so tight, Rovilson? That’s what we call a CHOKE.
– Allan said no team was anywhere near the calibre of them. Rovilson was hoping for an eating challenge.
Heh. Apparently I knew what he wanted.
ROVILSON: I was hoping to eat the flags.
The joke wasn’t that funny, you two.
– Marc & Rovilson congratulate Adrian & Collin. Collin immediately congratulates the other teams. This ensues chaos as all of the other teams join them.
MARC: We have had an absolutely amazing race. They have really named this show perfectly. This will be something we will be sharing with each other’s grandchildren years from now.
ROVILSON: We wanted to play this game the same way that our parents raised us to play the game of life–and make people laugh.
MARC: We hope we have done a little bit of that.
Your parents raised you to hit on underage females in the game of life too?
-Vanessa says the race has made her more confident as a person and the race was a gift.
– Adrian talks about how Collin’s disability is just a state of mind.
If only that message reached across the Pacific Ocean.
– Adrian has the last word.
ADRIAN: It is just an AMAZING experience that no one should miss.
And that’s it! We are done showing you every minute of TAR Asia 2! The final mat photo here is funny because you hear the flash of the camera when it is taken. Usually it is just a shot taken from a helicopter, but here it sounds like a professional photographer coached them how to pose and has the loud sound effect in the background.
So this is it. Take it away Kyle Justin!
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 Edwin & Monica 10.0 (Only team to finish last for the first two rounds of the race.)
10th Lisa & Joni 10.0
10th Kevin & Drew All Stars 10.0
10th A Black Family 10.0
— F +–
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 Singaporean Sophie & French Born Aurelia 7.0 (French Born Aurelia sadly does not know the English words for ‘team averages’. :/)
8th Tom & Terry 7.0
8th Dave & Margaretta 7.0 R.I.P. Margaretta
9th Lena & Kristy 7.0
10th Hope & Norm 7.0
9th Rogers Family 6.5
8th Susan & Patrick 6.5
6th Henry & Terri 6.44 Used Their Yield; Finished last on a non-elimination round THREE times. R.I.P. Henry.
6th Lenny & Karyn 6.43
9th Brett & Kinar 6.33
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 Daichi & Sawaka 5.83
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 R.I.P. Nancy.
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
5th Paula & Natasha 4.45
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
2nd Pamela & Vanessa 3.92
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 Diane & Ann 3.75 – Yielded
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
1st Adrian & Collin 2.23 FF
2nd Eric & Jeremy 1.69 FF
lol 3rd Marc & Rovilson 1.46 Used Yield and Yielded
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.
Rank the Teams:
1) Singaporean Sophie & French Born Aurelia
If it was Singaporean Sophie and her sister, then she would be ranked at the bottom.
Thank goodness that she made the tres tres tres wise decision of having French Born Aurelia as her teammate.
Ah yes. French Born Aurelia. Ex-roommate of Singaporean Sophie who recently reunited shortly before coming on the race.
Singaporean Sophie always picked on French Born Aurelia for not being able to do much and clueless to her surroundings.
The thing is that they were both mutually useless. Once they had to drive themselves they were done. They had troubles with a stick shift and could not even fill a gas tank. Heck, the gas tank comedic routine cost them about thirty minutes of time. That’s not even counting their emergency stop to ensure they screwed the cap on all the way.
There was this je ne sais quois feeling when French Born Aurelia was presented on screen that attracted viewers to her. She was a French model being put on a race around the world.
In other words, a six foot tall 95 pound woman with large earrings had to depend on herself to do many tasks which required a lot of physical strength and mental agility. There was also practical knowledge which her and Singaporean Sophie just could not grasp.
Also, French Born Aurelia has the smallest English vocabulary of anyone to ever compete on The Amazing Race Asia. She was confused about what certain words meant when her partner treated her as an idiot for not knowing every single word in the dictionary.
It is tragic that we lost French Born Aurelia after just four episodes. She had so much promise. But given that her and Singaporean Sophie’s abilities were rather limited, this is probably where they should have finished.
But god. Four rounds in a season with five non-elimination rounds? I wish all five non-eliminations came in the beginning just so we were guaranteed six episodes of French Born Aurelia’s antics.
2) Marc & Rovilson
Just another list where Marc & Rovilson are just short of being number one.
So besides the lolzworthy finish, we cannot ignore that these guys freakin’ owned a season more than any other team in TAR history. This was of Team Gypsy proportions.
It was like they did the King’s Ransom in every single episode.
First. First. First. First.
And if they did not finish first, they would be close behind in second. They either held the lead or were no more than thirty minutes behind all season long. Eight victories, a record for the franchise at the time and is tied for the record to this day, and four runner-up positions to go along with it.
Rovilson is really good in front of the camera. He knew how to mug for airtime with his facial expressions and the way he was willing to have conversations just for the viewers. He also did an excellent job of being a great narrator. Considering Adrian & Collin and other teams are soft spoken and not exactly built for talking in front of the camera, someone like Rovilson is essential for a good season of television.
Let’s face it. Marc & Rovilson work in television. They have traveled around the world. Not only will they be actively aware of the camera, but they were guaranteed to last a very long time in the season due to not only their travel experience but also great physical fitness and sharp wit. In addition, their outgoing personalities made them have zero hesitancy in regards to asking for help from locals.
Just imagine this season with a team like Howard & Sahran or Sahil & Prashant instead of Marc & Rovilson. This season could have been quite dull.
The alliance that Marc & Rovilson had with Pamela & Vanessa and Paula & Natasha is not in the least bit surprising. Marc & Rovilson’s active libido and sex drive was a huge part of their storyline as they hit on every woman they ran into on the race course Heck, sex was on their minds to the point that Rovilson went to a strip bar to strip for money to Justin Timberlake’s Sexyback.
But even with those distractions Marc & Rovilson managed to dominate the whole season.
Well, except for the very end. The only two teams to beat them at any point during the season (outside of Daichi & Sawaka who do not really count because the Japan round was in their backyard) beat them in a showdown at the very end where Rovilson choked.
Rovilson pulled TAR Asia’s version of the Bill Buckner Play. Something so routine but yet Rovilson could not perform when it truly counted.
That however will not diminish Marc & Rovilson’s legacy. They have set a mark that has yet to be beat after thirteen years have passed in The Amazing Race franchise.
3) Pamela & Vanessa
“Oh my god, Vanessa!”
Jamie Newton from Survivor: Guatemala likes them crazy and pretty. Thankfully Pamela & Vanessa meet both of those qualities.
Vanessa may be the most confused racer to find herself at the finish line. The fact her and Pamela finish the season in second, but will go down officially as beating Marc & Rovilson overall is hilarious.
They did well in the first round where they claimed first place. After that it was a comedy of errors as we all wondered how they kept surviving each elimination. The answer of course is because the bottom five teams were all fairly weak teams, but a team like Pamela & Vanessa rarely do well in TAR.
It was not like they suffered from bad or good luck to make it a comedy of errors. They just made a series of poor decisions.
See Vanessa. She cannot read maps nor can she drive. So she is stuck driving. Even when Pamela gives her directions, Vanessa is so confused and scattered that she fails to follow them. Remember the hilarious breakdown in South Korea? Heck, we saw a hint of that in South Africa during round twelve.
Whenever they fought their voices would turn into a series of squeals like they were chipmunks or mice. It was tough to take their anger seriously with each other in these situations because it felt like you were watching a Saturday morning cartoon. It would be like if Alvin and Theodore were fighting on television.
Ah yes. The mild concussion that Vanessa suffered. That was a bizarre experience. To see Vanessa genuinely not know what they were doing (which to be fair was no different than any other round) was scary to watch. It was tough to find it charming or funny. Brain injuries suffered on The Amazing Race is not that funny.
Pamela was the brain and brawn of the team. She was essentially playing for two people. What made her entertaining is that she had such a good read whenever Vanessa was confused, and despite all of the craziness she would always support her sister. Pamela would also have a funny way to explain certain events throughout the season.
Her face was not as expressive as Vanessa’s, but it was still a great balance to Vanessa’s personality. You can see why they are sisters because they find their own ridiculousness to be quite amusing.
4) Paula & Natasha
Much like Andy & Laura in TAR Asia 1, Paula & Natasha are billed as the team from Thailand. You may or may not have noticed that Natasha could not look, speak, or behave in a less Thai manner.
Her and Paula are childhood friends. Natasha’s parents are supposedly British or Aussie.
Anyways, it was established early on that we would hear from Natasha far more than Paula. Heck, Natasha uttered more curse words than all of the words that Paula said combined all season long.
They were good entertainment all season long. Particularly Natasha who wore her emotions on her sleeves and attempted to strategize in an alliance with Marc & Rovilson and Pamela & Vanessa.
I think I would probably get along with Paula & Natasha more than any other team if I met them in real life. They would just be a lot of fun to hang around.
Was I disappointed they finished as low as fifth? Considering there were two episodes left, and they had finished fourth and sixth virtually every round all season, I am content with them going home before the Final Four.
There is really only one specific moment to attach to Paula & Natasha prior to interacting with the street violinist–the Intersection. Pamela & Vanessa were supposed to reject Diane & Ann, and instead wait to partner with Paula & Natasha. However, Pamela & Vanessa forget about that plan and partner up with Diane & Ann anyway.
Paula & Natasha waiting for FIVE HOURS for Henry & Terri’s fatally slow racing speed was gut wrenching to watch. If you are fan of dark humour, you are not going to find a better example of it anywhere else in the TAR franchise.
Or maybe one other moment is Natasha’s loved one on her Nokia cell phone telling her not to cuss so much after Natasha already dropped 18, 000 s-bombs and f-bombs on international television.
Oh, and Paula driving a manual stick shift. That can apply to every all-female team, but dang, Paula was probably the closest to a car crash of all teams. In fact her or Natasha even popped a tire while driving into a Korean toll booth.
Seriously, it is stuff like that which makes TAR equally funny to Survivor.
Overall, Paula & Natasha were just great characters (mainly Natasha) who made nearly every scene better.
Oh s—! I forgot about the scene with the bunny!
5) Adrian & Collin
Our beloved winners for TAR Asia 2.
I am not going to lie. It was tough to rank these two amongst the rest of the cast. On one hand, they are the most genuine and kind-hearted racers that the franchise has ever seen. Is there really one bad thing I can say about Adrian & Collin? No.
Does being really nice, genuine, humble, and kind-hearted make you for good television? Absolutely not. Adrian & Collin were practically hidden until the last five or six episodes of the season.
Collin was the first contestant to be cast with a hearing disability in franchise history. Luke Adams would follow just over a year later, and somehow would get to be on two more times than Collin.
Collin is the greatest role model for those with hearing disabilities. One of the reasons I did TAR Asia 2 right after TAR 14 was because I wanted to see how different Collin and Luke are.
And boy oh boy, Collin is 150 to 200 percent different from Luke. Although I am guessing most of Luke’s personality is not really his fault. Whoever Collin’s parents were raised him with not just a lot of love, but made sure he can be independent. Half the time you would forget Collin had any sort of disability.
I think his words at the end of the season were very fitting. He never dwells on it. That is something that even those of us with much smaller problems should walk away with in our minds.
This is in huge contrast to Margie & Luke where you feel like Margie wanted Luke to dwell on or exploit his hearing disability as much as possible.
Is that a cultural difference between the US and Southeast Asia? Collin has a disability, and he does not seem to be concerned with it in the slightest. For Luke, you are reminded every two seconds about his disability and how bad we are supposed to feel about it.
And can we take a minute to rave about Collin’s mental strength? His ability to research better flights or trains, and the way he knocked out that flag challenge shows how sharp he really is. Adrian was a strong competitor too. We should note that Collin was almost always right when reading a map to direct Adrian.
Their biggest weakness that they repeated was their inability to keep a taxi and order it to wait. I wonder if that was a politeness thing because they did not want a taxi to wait there all day potentially, but that mistake was so close to losing them the whole race.
The fact they beat Marc & Rovilson right when it counted really boosted the reputation of this season. I think the showdown between Marc & Rovilson and Adrian & Collin all season long was just as good as the showdown between BJ & Tyler and Eric & Jeremy in TAR 9.
Adrian & Collin earned that victory.
6) Henry & Terri
It is no secret that Henry & Terri were one of the more entertaining teams this season. It is also no secret that they were hated by 90% of the audience.
They made a couple of unprecedented moves.
a) They were the first team to finish last on THREE non-eliminations legs. That has never happened anywhere else in the TAR franchise. It was not until the following round that the final deathblow was served.
b) They are the first team to directly argue with the host at a pit stop.
Also, this is not directly related to the season, but this is the second time I have blogged about a TAR contestant who died by the time I reached their season.
Margaretta Groark died about three years before I did my TAR 1 blog. Nancy Hoyt died about six months after the TAR 1 blog.
As for Henry Reed? He joined them about a year ago. Given how short my TAR 1 blog was, I consider this to be the first time where I truly blogged about a deceased contestant. It is odd to blog about roughly 200 teams before coming to a racer who is the only one out of 400 to die.
You know what I find amazing? There were three non-elimination legs between rounds five and eight. This meant there was only six or seven teams left. Despite that their average for the season is still 6.44. Finishing 9th-9th-5th-7th-7th-3rd-6th-6th-6th is next to impossible in the TAR Asia format.
Part of me wishes they finished sixth instead of third in the Busan round. They would be practically guaranteed the worst average of any team to reach sixth place in any season of The Amazing Race.
So why did this team perform so horribly? Well, because of Terri’s antics. I swear they would have been a much stronger team if Terri did not blow up or pout at every twist and turn.
Henry said it would be their brains that would get them ahead of the other “scatterbrained” teams. But what this really meant is that Henry & Terri just paused too long before acting upon the next correct move. The delays between each move can be largely attributed to Terri interrupting the thought process.
I would not be surprised if the level of stress knocked a few years off of Henry’s life during the race, but if you watch the race, you can see how much more he enjoys being with Terri than any other racer. That Intersection with Paula & Natasha was enough to kill him, even if it meant a much greater chance of surviving a round that they started out 10 hours behind all other teams.
Production intervened after Henry fought his money being taken away, and given they were last only a day later but were only Marked for Elimination as they finished ten hours behind, and even followed that up by an Intersection that forced a team to wait nearly six hours, Henry & Terri were given every chance possible to survive.
Heck, rounds one and two were in the Philippines, and Henry & Terri have lived there together for fifteen years. Despite that they still finished ninth both rounds, and that is only because Monica Lo is the worst racer I have ever seen.
If it were not for Henry & Terri, I would assume Marc & Rovilson’s airtime would double. So if you are not fans of Marc & Rovilson, you should be thankful that producers viewed Henry & Terri as being entertaining enough to steal some airtime away from them.
There is not much to say. Terri was expressive, pouting constantly, and interrupted any focus that the team could have had along the way. To balance that out they were extraordinarily lucky to survive three non-eliminations.
Oh, I cannot end this without mentioning that them Yielding Marc & Rovilson (a.k.a. Magnum P.I. as they called him for no apparent reason) may have been the most pointless Yield use ever. Even Kynt & Vyxsin Yielding Nic & Don in TAR 12 seemed more reasonable than Henry & Terri.
7) Diane & Ann
Fit dancing mothers in their late 30s and early 40s who finish anywhere between third and fourth for the whole season?
I believe they came, they danced, they MILFed their way onto the show. Okay, I will be serious now.
Outside of driving a manual transmission or perhaps not excelling at directions, they were a very well-rounded team. Usually a team of mothers are out in the first three episodes of TAR, or you manage to go far because you bowl professionally.
Or you are masters with reading maps but fall hard on the final round.
Yes, that was a reference to Linda & Karen and Lyn & Karyn.
But check out the team averages. Ann & Diane have the best out of any mother-mother team so far. If you can get a 3.75 average when facing Adrian & Collin and Marc & Rovilson in the same season, you must be doing something right.
Diane was shown to have a bit more teeth to her while Ann is perhaps a contender for the calmest racer ever.
However, Ann’s meditations, calmness, and joyriding weren’t the only things she did well on the race. She also managed to trick Sawaka into getting herself eliminated during the Busan round where Diane & Ann appeared to be doomed for elimination.
It was interesting to see that virtually every team hated them. Perhaps not hate, but rather be genuinely disliked by every team except Adrian & Collin. There is no explanation for this except that the Malaysian Moms were being viewed as fake.
Rather than Diane occasionally being angry or Ann being emotionless, they went out of the race on a high note as they just crumbled emotionally after seeing the orphanage. It did confirm that Ann does indeed have feelings.
My apologies to Diane & Ann for not counting their Fukuoka pit stop win–I am not recognizing production’s stupidity. The true pit stop should have been right before the most ridiculous equalizer I have ever seen.
It is interesting that Diane & Ann were unaware just how much teams did not like them from the beginning. When they were yielded, Diane was unaware to the point that she assumed it was because of being a threat rather than it being completely personal.
How awkward will that be for their kids to watch on television? “Why does no one like you, mommy?”
According to my calculations, it is going to be a -really- long time before I will be blogging about a team of mothers making it to the Final Four again.
Except instead of being MILFinators who love to dance, they will be strapping on rollerblades to clobber the competition.
Ann & Diane were a likable and strong team. However, their quiet nature will not make them memorable, and because they could not crack the top of the leaderboard outside of their religious third and fourth place finishes, they truly define a great-but-not-spectacular level of competition.
8) Brett & Kinaryoshih
So Kinaryoshih, or better known as Kinar, is famous? Really? To keep up the metropolitan image, she raced with her boyfriend Brett Money.
Brett Money was a nice guy who happened to be a bit amusing. Besides being too eager to explain to Kinar what an aphrodisiac was, such as balut and lumb, he looked a lot like Joseph Gordon Levitt.
His three biggest goals on the race were to be good to Kinar, have fun, and never quit. Note that winning nor a cutthroat game was ever on his mind.
Kinaryoshih, who earned the suffix to her name by thinking she had to ride the back of an animal, was notorious for her screeching and that funny accent of hers.
They did extremely well in the Philippines, but for some reason they could not find anything in New Zealand. In addition they never did well at any of the tasks. They may have found a clue box in Hong Kong first, but after that they were sixth or lower for the remainder of the round.
In fact, they were so far behind at the end of the Auckland round that the other Detour option closed well after all teams had finished the Detour, and had an additional two tasks to go. Obviously production did not want to wait for them twelve hours after everyone else was done, and guided them to the pit stop to eliminate them.
I assume this was done because they could not even read a map to find their own way to each route marker.
Other than that, not much to say about this young Indonesian couple. They were nice. Provided a few laughs. And not the most skilled team this race has seen.
P.S. After her time on TAR Asia 2, Kinaryoshih won an award for playing a sister-cum-manager in a film with fellow famous Indonesian actress named Titi Kamal.
P.P.S. Kinaryoshih is famous in Indonesia to the point that her and Brett Money secretly married in Australia in 2011. Right before marriage Money had converted to Islam. They have a son named Jamal.
P.P.P.S. Just kidding. The child’s name is Steven.
9) Daichi & Sawaka
Daichi & Sawaka have a subtle complexity to them. If you cannot remember, Daichi got married in Mexico without telling Sawaka or their parents because “he did not believe it was important”.
Daichi reminded me of one of my brothers Adam simply because I could see the high powered intellect, but the laziness and slow pace that went along with it.
Sawaka had a lot of energy at the start of the race, but her reluctance to do anything on her own such as ask for directions or accept the conniving nature of the race really set her back. I think Daichi & Sawaka may be contenders for the worst at asking for directions.
The only time these two did well was when they visited Japan for one round. Obviously they finished first unofficially, and as soon as they hit South Korea they fell back to the lower rungs like they always do.
I would say this was the perfect round for Daichi & Sawaka to be eliminated. I thought they would go in eighth or ninth, and thus find their seventh place finish an upset. Passivity and introvert nature are not good qualities for a race.
And apparently they led the counter-alliance against Diane & Ann. They refused to use a Yield because they thought Diane & Ann were ahead of them. That proved to be a fatal error as Henry & Terri decided to Yield Marc & Rovilson.
Did they do anything memorable in this race outside of being passive or Daichi’s initial fear of heights? Outside of being Japanese, there is nothing too special about them.
Sawaka is the only racer in TAR history who had her own solo backed by the credits music band as the episode came to an end. An odd honour for a racer to receive.
And no, Sony never signed her.
10) Edwin & Monica
Wow. It actually happened. A team managed to finish last on the first leg, but the second leg as well. As of the beginning of 2014, this has never happened again.
Does that mean they are by default the worst team ever because they could not beat a single team for the opening two rounds?
No. Remember that in the American franchise, teams are almost always bunched together into one or two flights for the second round of play. This is why we occasionally see a team go from first to last or from the back to the front in the opening rounds of play.
Without an equalizer you could say that Edwin & Monica could have done better than other teams in round two simply based on time to complete the tasks, but finished last because their surplus was not enough to climb out of last. The only bottom-feeders along with them were Henry & Terri, and Henry & Terri knew their hometown well in addition to having a Detour that fit in with their skillset.
Furthermore, Edwin & Monica never had the chance to drive themselves. For all we know other teams suck at driving a stick while Edwin may be a master at it. They could have very well lived and died by the taxi and bus drivers in the opening two rounds.
Other teams who have been eliminated suffered from not knowing how to talk to locals politely. Edwin & Monica were never rude to others that they met.
I would say that the only sub-par elements of their game in the first two rounds is that Monica has atrocious cardio. She is one of the skinniest racers ever, and could not even keep up with Edwin who carried everyone’s bags. Both rounds involved a lot of running which meant Monica’s speed could have easily dropped them thirty minutes in the process.
They had a tough time navigating themselves with running on the streets. That is how they fell to last right away. Stuck on the streets of Singapore as they could not adjust their way of thinking with only minutes into the race. They easily lost a couple hours right there.
Add in a Detour at the end of round two where Monica had no idea how to put a bike together, and suddenly you see why it is not much of a surprise that they wound up last in back-to-back rounds.
Monica may have a case as the slowest racer ever, but Edwin not so much as he did well with his Roadblock, made the right decisions, and could move well for carrying twice as many bags as a typical team member.
Personally, from the first fourteen seasons of TAR, I would still have Meredith & Maria, Don & Mary Jean, or John & Scott as the nominations for worst racers ever.
Rank the Legs:
1) Prague, Czech Republic -> Budapest, Hungary
I. . .really liked this round. Nothing really dragged. In fact the airtime in this episode is a full minute less than all of the other episodes thus far. I think it was a wise move.
You can tell how fatigued the teams are by round ten. Marc & Rovilson slipping to fourth with only one task to go really shows that.
Adrian & Collin being the first team to outwit Marc & Rovilson all season is a huge shift for the rivalry. Why? Because that means we have, you know, an actual rivalry. Note that the last time Marc & Rovilson lost a round is when they were beat by Daichi & Sawaka in Tokyo.
Yeah, losing to a team in a complicated city like Tokyo where Daichi & Sawaka not only live but also know the language is not exactly a defeat.
Before that? Pamela & Vanessa beating Marc & Rovilson by a couple minutes in round one.
So I would contend this is the first round where Marc & Rovilson legitimately lose a round of play. They cannot even blame it on a billion equalizers.
Adrian & Collin nearly blew the lead by parking in the middle of a major tourist attraction rather than in the flagged area. I have a feeling they lost a good twenty minutes or so.
It was neat to see 2nd through 5th place continuously shift for the whole round. Nobody ever solidified their placing until they found the pit stop. I cannot remember the last round of play where finishes were completely unpredictable. Marc & Rovilson getting second was viewed as an upset.
I enjoyed the tasks of navigating the train route, the flying fox math puzzle, searching for a location based on a note of the local currency, and a Detour that stuck them out on a farm in 41 degree Celsius heat. Especially when it makes Pamela Chong sound like Lil Jon.
Lastly, the divide between the all-male teams and the all-female teams were evident this round. In fact, I cannot recall a time that same-gender teams all occupied the final five teams. Seeing the all-male teams master the stick shift while the women would repeatedly avoid close collisions made you wonder why in the world they did not get more lessons before the race.
Oh, and Ann’s joy ride was awesome.
In short, this was probably the most enjoyable round of the season. This is the final non-elimination round, which meant that the storyline was set as we enter the final three legs of the race. And what better way to set up this transition too than to have Marc & Rovilson finally seem vulnerable.
Mix in Vanessa’s ongoing freakouts, and this round leaves nothing to be desired.
2) Singapore, Singapore -> Manila, Philippines
This was ten times better than the opening round from TAR Asia 1.
Go-karting and descending a mall is replaced by eating balut, flying to another country, no equalizers, and a wicked 181 metre high tower traverse. I should also note that the teams are a bit more compelling and more extraverted than the crowd gathered for the first season. No Sahil & Prashants or Sahrans.
The only slight con is that Marc & Rovilson occupied more than a quarter of the airtime while the first place team, Pamela & Vanessa, were shown half as much as them.
Oh, and the tricky non-elimination in the opening round for the second season in a row was a nice fakeout by production. We also see the introduction of the TAR 10/11 non-elimination penalty being introduced to the East.
3) Manila, Philippines -> Auckland, New Zealand
You know what’s left out of this description? The side trip to Hong Kong for one task before heading to Auckland. In Hong Kong they went to a pier before going to a bank where teams spent two to three hours counting coins and notes.
Everybody was on the same flight to Hong Kong. But guess what? After the task, everyone was on the same flight to Auckland. Hong Kong had zero bearing on the round.
However, these lame equalizers were made up by teams having to drive themselves around Auckland. In addition, there was SIX destinations around Auckland that teams visited. One of these tasks was a gruelling Detour, a jump off a bridge, using a Sony Cybershot through a heritage site, visiting a winery, going through a haunted house, and lastly finishing in a haunted forest.
Teams appeared to finish from first to last about eight to ten hours apart. Well, the last place team, Brett & Kinar, was ordered to skip -two- tasks in order to check in at the mat. And they could not even blame it on a late flight because everyone shared the same one.
Seeing Pamela & Vanessa collide with another civilian vehicle is extremely rare for the franchise. Usually teams wipe out in their own vehicle, sometimes smash into an object, or get charged with speeding. But seeing a civilian car crash right into them? The last time I can recall that happening is during the Cancun round of TAR 3 with the bus.
4) Budapest, Hungary -> Cape Town, South Africa
The penultimate round of TAR Asia 2. In terms of a shocking elimination, you will not find it here as Diane & Ann screwed up when they took a risk on a London flight to Cape Town while all other teams traveled through Frankfurt.
They were supposed to be saved by an immediate 2 1/2 hour equalizer, but the London flight was delayed by an additional hour to make the outcome of the episode known about ten minutes in.
That does not take away from the landscape and tasks, though. This is the only episode that the TAR Asia franchise will be in Africa which makes this round special.
Also, none of the locations overlapped to where the real TAR had been in TAR 2 or TAR 7. Zero mention of Nelson Mandela or Morgan Freeman, oddly enough.
Instead they went to a place called Smognal Hill, er, Signal Hill which may be the smoggiest place I have ever seen.
And who can forget Adrian & Collin losing twenty minutes to not being able to operate a car where all you do is push ‘start’?
Add in racing open pit cars, navigating the confusing roads, help at an orphanage, a trip through cheetah enclosures and elephant dung, and a fun safari ride makes for a great leg.
And all of this was possible because of Caltex and Standard Chartered!
Oh, and a HUGE storyline is Marc & Rovilson reclaiming first place from Adrian & Collin to secure their eighth victory of the season. They just need to win the most important round of all to secure the record.
5) Rotorua, New Zealand -> “Tokyo”, Japan
The fifth round of the game but only our second equalizer as teams head to Tokyo.
It is no secret that I love visits to Japan. In the future, we will see numerous TAR visits to Tokyo where every appearance involves a MXC-inspired gameshow.
But this is back during the TAR 9, 12, and TAR Asia 2 days where we never reduced ourselves to that.
And for two visits to Japan already in the books, every task was brand new. Cosplay? Icebar puzzle? Navigating the confusing metro streets at night using trains, taxis, and your own two feet?
And this was all immediately landing in Tokyo after a nine thousand kilometre trip from New Zealand. Just look at a map to appreciate the distance.
Yes, because this race is exclusive to contestants from Oceania and Asia, a team is bound to have an advantage. This time it was an advantage for the slow-moving Daichi & Sawaka.
Much like BJ & Tyler in TAR 9, and Ronald & Christina in TAR 12, they suddenly found themselves dominating the round as they could communicate well with every local as all other teams became increasingly confused and frustrated.
I don’t understand the song about cherry blossoms other than that they needed to work in some more product placement.
As for the fact that it was a classic To Be Continued leg where nobody is punished for coming in last, and the fact that this pit stop was located 1, 1000 kilometres away from the previous route marker, AND that it was an equalizer for all seven teams to ensure the standings came down to a taxi ride. . .well, this is where the rating for the episode drops.
In fact, having an equalizer for all teams after the final route marker but before checking into the pit stop is absurd to the point that I do not recognize their placements. Instead, I consider the order in which teams arrived at the Tokyo bullet train station as the true end of the round.
The trek through Tokyo would be Daichi & Sawaka’s lone shining moment for the race. Somehow the only other thing they knew how to do was to be near the bottom of the pack and indirectly ask locals on the street for help.
6) Manila, Philippines -> Manila, Philippines
What I loved about this round? There were no equalizers. Well, there was buses that left every fifteen minutes, but nearly every team had their own bus multiple times during the leg.
I think it is even more important this happened because the previous round was a non-elimination. So how you finished on the first leg carried over directly to this second round.
I must say this has to be the most forgettable trip to an orphanage in the history of TAR. In fact anytime you integrate product placement into a round will certainly make it an unmemorable task. And when it is the same product placement in the form of Caltex, you get a lot of snoozers.
Although if it were not for Caltex’s heavy advertising, TAR Asia may never exist in the first place.
Heading out to Pila and directing an animal that I never heard of before was definitely a treat. It is tough to go to a location that the “real” TAR has been to before, but find unique things to do.
That Roadblock seemed rather difficult, come to think of it.
I approve of the Detour. Do a task that will have a small variant in how long it will take compared to a high risk-high reward option made for a great dilemma. Do you chance it on hoping you can fix a bike quickly or do you sort through 250 pairs of shoes?
The insight into the public transportation of the Philippines, and truly understanding the how common the sight of jeepneys are in Manila, produced an interesting bit of info for viewers during the episode.
I would say that dropping boxes off at the orphanage should have been more difficult to navigate, but after seeing what happened with Pamela & Vanessa, may be it was difficult enough.
Lastly, seeing Edwin & Monica finish dead last in each of the first two legs is a highlight for the franchise. Granted there was no equalizer to make it as two distinct last place finishes, but still funny to think about when it comes to the TAR franchise.
And the round needed more carabao.
7) Budapest, Hungary -> Budapest, Hungary
Yeah, there was some things this round did well and some other things. . .not so well.
Like other seasons of the TAR franchise, thirteen rounds can be too much for production to handle for some routes.
And when you do a 13-round season after thirteen American seasons and one Asian season has aired on TV, you are going to have a tough time coming up with original tasks.
That was apparent when the Fast Forward was counting posts on a bridge. Yes, a counting task for the third round in a row. Instead of writing this number on a chalkboard, teams had to punch it into a safe.
Counting posts on a bridge may be a sign that there is not much else to do in Budapest.
But after that hiccup which let Adrian & Collin finish the episode within two or three hours of pit start, the round really picks up.
Teams using a pettycab to transport themselves around Margaret Island (a.k.a. Rabbit Island to locals) was neat as they needed to not only find where St. Margaret lived, but also a specific ruin where they would find a souvenir. This souvenir ended up being a bunny. Clever producers.
The Roadblock was not quite a needle-in-the-haystack. Teams had to search through a ton of chests for the one with clues inside. However, the true challenge was navigating the dark labyrinth. This is far more creative than opening a bunch of crates stacked in rows upon rows or unrolling haybales or biting into chocolates or biting into chocolates or digging through a salt mound or sifting through thousands of coffee beans or digging in the sand for a tiny surfboard.
Yeah, TAR loves this s—.
But the labyrinth? You needed a good sense of direction to figure out where you needed to go. Plus the location was cool and had some history too.
Again, the unique and historical nature of the location trumps “unroll hay bales at a farm that could really exist anywhere else in the northern hemisphere”.
The Detour was amazing. Rubik’s Cube or pronounce names of Hungarian kings? This may have been one of my favourite Detours. Both sound like a bizzle to go through.
And then the other Yield was mixed in here for a bit of drama as the three-team alliance finally colluded and carried out their plan of Yielding the Malaysian Moms. This of course meant nothing because the round was only eight hours long, and Paula & Natasha were a good hour or so behind the second-to-last place team.
The only other points I deduct for this round is that the only Fast Forward all season appears in round eleven. Yes, I want a Fast Forward every round. To not only reduce it to one Fast Forward for the whole season, but also delay it to round eleven for a guaranteed pass into the Final Four, I found it downright ridiculous.
And the task was counting posts.
Sigh. Producers never know how to deal with Fast Forwards anymore.
8) Cape Town, South Africa -> Singapore, Singapore
The final showdown. Another one of TAR Asia 2’s long 46-48 minute episodes.
But they blew it. Almost.
First, the recap at the start of the episode must be the longest recap ever. It was nine minutes long, and the round itself did not begin until after the ten minute mark. That cut away a huge amount of airtime for the episode to watch a climax that everybody has been waiting months and months for.
Given what went down in TAR 11, everybody was on page that you need to go to the final destination city with several route markers to go. In fact by TAR 12 they instantly head to the final destination city right away. That has not changed since then.
But TAR Asia 2? It aired right after TAR 12, but clearly the lesson was not taught. We spend nearly the whole episode in South Africa. Only fourteen minutes of airtime was left when they were directed to Singapore. That includes four minutes devoted to final mat chats, celebrations, and credits that last two minutes. You would think every registered company in Asia sponsoured the show.
Once they reached Singapore all that was left was Raffles statue, the final Roadblock, and the race to the finish mat. That was it. It may have the record for shortest amount of time spent in the final destination city. I doubt it took more than ninety minutes to complete it all. Even TAR 1 spent more time in New York at the end of the season.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the tasks in South Africa such as paragraph reading and wire radio making, and even the misleading race rock searching, but still, that is all meaningless when everyone is put on the same flight to Singapore with only one task to go before ending the season.
Another reason why this round does not finish last is because of the final Roadblock showdown. It was brief because Collin showed up last but had the task done in seconds. I am not kidding you. That was probably no more than forty-five seconds. Everyone else took roughly ten to fifteen minutes.
Seeing Marc & Rovilson not only squander their lead in South Africa because they missed a funicular, but also see them squander it away to BOTH teams in Singapore was a major highlight for the season.
The finale was not terrible by any means, but its structure and format left much to be desired.
And lol at Pamela & Vanessa finishing the season as the runner-ups.
9) Auckland, New Zealand -> Rotorua, New Zealand
This leg was awesome.
No equalizer. Check.
Teams forcing to drive themselves rather than take taxis. Check.
Random Caltex appearance. Check.
Terri being crazier than her usual self. Check.
TAR 5 sledging. Check.
TAR 5 Hell’s Gate mud bath. Check.
An elimination? Check.
So what’s wrong with the episode?
Because French Born Aurelia was eliminated due to starting this round over eight hours behind all other teams. Her and Singaporean Sophie were out before the leg even began.
Words cannot describe how tragic it is to lose her by the end of round four.
A tough Detour where teams had to either weave or play with sticks.
10) Nizbor, Czech Republic -> Prague, Czech Republic
Remember how we just did a bunch of tasks in Prague only one round earlier? How about we make teams go back to Prague and do seventy-five percent of the round there?
Again, I wish they cut down on the number of equalizers since they had so many in the previous round.
The Intersection returned for its third time, but did nothing to improve upon the TAR 10 and 11 Intersections. Only one of the Detour options was cooperative. The other task, shooting hockey pucks into a net, was strictly individual between the four players.
The ten metre high dive was a one-dimensional task. If it were not for Vanessa suffering from brain damage/concussion/hysteria/whatever it was, it may go down as the weakest Roadblock ever used in TAR history.
Now I wonder what would have happened to Vanessa if the board was fifteen metres high.
Editors did a good job of making you forget about Henry & Terri’s penalty. They needed roughly ten hours to get to the Intersection where Paula & Natasha had been waiting for five hours. If you could recall the penalty, you knew Henry & Terri were done for good.
Marc & Rovilson finished first for the seventh time this season, which at the time tied a franchise record. With four rounds to go, everyone was curious if Marc & Rovilson would keep this up and have one of the most dominating performances in the history of reality television.
The Final Three pact between Pamela & Vanessa, Paula & Natasha, and Marc & Rovilson suffered because Pamela & Vanessa agreed to team up with Diane & Ann at the Intersection. This complicated the storyline of Everybody but Adrian & Collin versus the Moms.
I should note that this was another bridge episode as Adrian & Collin and Marc & Rovilson teamed up at the Intersection to size up each other’s gameplay. With Marc & Rovilson finishing first for the third time in a row, and Adrian & Collin finishing second for the third round in a row as well, everybody was expecting this to build up through to a season finale showdown.
As Henry & Terri secured the worst average of any team to place sixth in franchise history, and avoid being saved by a non-elimination for a fourth time, we finally bid them farewell for good as only the ‘good’ teams remain.
In fact, Henry’s farewell would be permanent as he is currently the only TAR Asian to die since the four TAR Asia seasons aired.
11) Busan, South Korea -> Seoul, South Korea
You know in TAR 1 how every episode felt like a travel documentary, and the tasks took a backseat to the difficulties of travelling?
That is how I would describe this episode. About ninety percent of the footage was the inside of a team car. Ten to twelve hours of driving for all teams meant they were in a pressure cooker as they went through busy roads and confusing streets of a country that does not speak English.
There was no suspense as to who would finish first or who would finish last. That seemed to be their absolute last priority when editing this episode.
Just think that this was round seven of thirteen. The halfway point of the season. It is amazing that these racers were up for playing another six rounds.
The Roadblock of opening jars was lame.
The Detour however seemed quick, but it is much better than any of the tasks we saw overall this round or last round. South Korea really sucked for tasks this season.
And do the police officers have nothing to do in this country?
Seeing Henry completely break down when dealing with not only Terri but the non-elimination penalty of money being taken away was a huge part of this episode.
I had to drop the rating for this episode simply because the pace was a bit too slow, and editors leaving out the full blowup from Henry at the host is a major injustice. How can you leave out something that has never happened in twenty-three seasons of TAR in the West?
12) Seoul, South Korea -> Nizbor, Czech Republic
I would have this round much higher, but it was FOUR FREAKIN’ equalizers that did it.
Yes, this was the first ever trip to the Czech Republic in the history of the TAR franchise.
Yes, this was the first time where a racer stripped for money.
Yes, seeing Henry & Terri finish last for a record breaking third time on a non-elimination was hilarious much to Allan’s chagrin.
Yes, seeing a Final Three alliance of Paula & Natasha, Marc & Rovilson, and Pamela & Vanessa was neat to see.
Yes, I loved that TAR Asia had enough funding to go into Europe for the first and only time out of all four seasons.
Yes, I loved that we left behind the awful tasks in South Korea.
But still, four equalizers in a round where a team was supposed to be half a day behind and never doing anywhere near as well as the other five teams was ridiculous to see. Back-to-back non-eliminations also reduces the momentum of any given season.
13) Fukuoka, Japan -> Busan, South Korea
This may be one of the worst rounds of TAR ever designed. Remember Paula’s quote during the episode?
PAULA: The real challenge is getting to the challenge rather than the challenge itself. . .
That about sums up this round.
Slither Detour and the Padlock Roadblock were shown in REAL TIME for EVERY team. That is absolutely ridiculous when you see that seven teams are still in the game. Most challenges take twenty minutes to two hours. But both of these tasks took no more than a minute for each team.
The only task not shown in real time was Taekwondo, and we saw most teams do each individual kick. We just didn’t get to see the reset between each time the instructor grabbed a new board.
Ninety percent of this round was spent in a taxi and it certainly showed. Henry & Terri kept their cool which meant that nothing exciting happened in a taxi. Nobody was super lost. The only reason you may think that is because the round was so short that losing thirty minutes to a bad cab is extreme given the length of the round.
I cannot get over the fact that each task took no more than three minutes. In fact Marc & Rovilson completed every task in SECONDS. Family Edition never went to that extreme.
If your tasks are easier and shorter than a round of Family Edition, then you are insulting the intelligence of other teams.
Even Austin Black Family would have blown through the Taekwondo task, the Slither Detour, and the padlocks.
The seventh place team should have been eliminated in Tokyo, and this round should have been the non-elimination.
If Henry & Terri Yielded any team behind them, that team would undoubtedly be gone. No way that Daichi & Sawaka lost by more than ten minutes.
Daichi & Sawaka seemed to switch Detour options almost right away. I doubt they lost more than ten minutes.
Yeah, Sawaka’s Detour option combined with being tricked by Diane & Ann single-handedly sent her and her brother home.
Perhaps the only memorable highlights from this episode is that Marc & Rovilson finished first for the fourth time in six episodes, and keeping up with Eric & Jeremy’s team average ratio of 1.33 after six rounds. The seventh round is when Eric & Jeremy fell to fourth. So Marc & Rovilson may take the lead.
I have nothing else to say. My episode blog probably makes the episode far more entertaining to read than it is to watch. I found myself getting bored because of how obvious it was that there was very little usable footage. I would not be surprised if they forced Marc & Rovilson to put on the fake mustaches to distract viewers from the fact that was going on.
So here it is. A contender for the worst episode in series history. No, franchise history. What a waste of an awesome location.
P.S. Yes, Sawaka really did sing for 45 seconds as the episode faded into credits.
Alright. You ready for me to give my final thoughts on this season and how it compares to others?
1. The Amazing Race 5 – 9.2/10
2. The Amazing Race 12 – 9.0/10
3. The Amazing Race 7 – 8.8/10
4. The Amazing Race 3 – 8.7/10
5. The Amazing Race 9 – 8.6/10
6. The Amazing Race 2 – 8.5/10
7. The Amazing Race 11: All Stars – 7.2/10
8. The Amazing Race Asia 2 – 7.19/10
9. The Amazing Race (1) – 7/10
10. The Amazing Race 13 – 6.8/10
11. The Amazing Race 10 – 6.5/10
12. The Amazing Race 4 – 6.25/10
13. The Amazing Race Asia 1 – 4.55/10
14. The Amazing Race 8 – 4.0/10
15. The Amazing Race 6 – 3.9/10
16. The Amazing Race 14 – 2.5/10
Yep. This is a quality season. For now it sits in the top half of the leaderboard. It cracks our TAR 1 Mendoza Line of 7.0
I guess the first comparison I made mentally throughout the season was how this season is much better in comparison to TAR Asia 1.
This season takes everything in TAR Asia 1 and improves upon it in every single area conceivable. The route is far better, the casting is far better, there are more memorable moments, the tasks are better, and the overall plot for the season is drastically better too.
TAR Asia 1 had way too many needles in a haystack and had too many lame locations. The advertisements that forced them to go to gas stations repeatedly in TAR Asia 1 was really lame. Luckily we only had two gas station location trips, but they were never made into Roadblocks or Detours like in TAR Asia 1.
There were far fewer equalizers in TAR Asia 2. In fact the first eight or nine episodes probably had a record low number of equalizers for the entire TAR franchise. It was neat for there to be a pattern where at end of every two rounds would trigger an elimination. In addition a team was always eliminated within each two round section. It was a neat experiment at the time.
I suppose I should discuss the non-eliminations. Once again there were five non-eliminations. However, much like TAR Asia 1, they are spaced throughout the season. In fact, TAR Asia 2 went the opposite route of TAR 8 Family Edition in terms of how they each handled five non-eliminations.
TAR 8 Family Edition waited until round five to start using their non-eliminations. That meant five non-eliminations appeared once only six teams remained.
Here in TAR Asia 2 they had five teams remaining but not a single non-elimination left to use. They spread them out between rounds one and ten. Sure, it is odd to see half of the cast remaining when you enter round eleven, but it makes for an exciting finish when you have a string of big stake races at the end of the season.
Another great aspect about TAR Asia 2 is that they were not just limited to southeast Asia and Oceania like in TAR Asia 1. They put in the money to go to Japan, South Korea, Europe, and Africa. It felt like a true international season.
Sadly that will not be continuing for the remaining TAR Asia seasons. In fact TAR Asia 3 will feature a record short route where they only leave continental Asia once.
So why is TAR Asia 2 not deemed a perfect season? Well, five non-eliminations is still five non-eliminations. Not only did it reduce the pace during the middle of the season, but it also hurt their idea to be creative on the race course. Some of the tasks were duplicated in the second half of the season which made it a bit repetitive. Not to mention that four rounds in Czech Republic and Hungary featured similar architecture and similar tasks to make it tough to distinguish one from the other.
If they reduced the number of non-eliminations to three or even four, I believe this problem would have been avoided. It is tough to do thirteen round seasons once fourteen or fifteen seasons of the franchise have already aired at the time.
The editing and music was odd at times too. Not quite as odd as TAR Canada 1, but it was a bit of a head-scratcher when a team in dead last had suspenseful music playing after all teams checked in, or when a team’s progress was out of order in terms of continuity.
There was also a lack of explanation during the middle rounds where teams left in a different order from when they initially checked in during the previous episode.
Remember how odd it was when a team’s checkout time did not make any sense for them because they would get on a flight that left an hour before they were shown checking out?
Also, some of the episodes ran a few minutes too long. Particularly once it was down to five or six teams when they had three out of four rounds be non-eliminations. In addition to some of those rounds being when Henry & Terri would finish six to twelve hours behind everyone else.
Remember the Budapest Fast Forward when teams would be counting posts for ten minutes on screen? If that task aired on American television, that would have been cut down to two minutes at most.
There was other amateur mistakes such as never keeping teams standing in the proper position on screen in accordance to how their names are listed, or even keeping the order of the names of the team displayed on screen consistently. This is something that has been mastered in the west since TAR 2, but for some reason TAR Asia puts zero effort into this.
What I really liked is that they had an episode before the race started where production introduced us to all ten teams. They did not do this in TAR Asia 1, and I believe it gives you a really in-depth look at some information which will not be mentioned once the race begins. It is like a pre-game background check for the viewers to watch.
Keep in mind that TAR 12 aired right before this season. In fact TAR Asia 2 and TAR Asia 3 air during the long hiatus until TAR 13 begins.
I mention this because TAR Asia 2 used Marked for Elimination, Yield, Non-elimination mugging, To Be Continued round, Intersection, and a thirteen round format which are all thrown out by TAR 12.
It was neat to see one final thirteen round season for the TAR franchise. TAR 1-11 and TAR Asia 1-2 is where you can find your thirteen round action. A lot of TAR Asia 2’s elements marks an end to an element that had been in existence from the series’ debut.
The reason why I also rank TAR Asia 2 so closely to TAR 1 is because the 13 47-minute episodes almost makes the season have a documentary atmosphere that has not been witnessed since TAR 1. It was neat to see them to imitate an atmosphere of an era that went by nearly thirteen years ago.
In short, this season was a huge improvement upon TAR Asia 1. In fact it improved so well and incorporated certain elements and format changes that places it above most seasons in the TAR franchise. However, an amateur and unprofessional editing crew hampered the final production. Lastly, we were given a reminder why thirteen rounds can work against you rather than for you.
So that’s it. That is TAR Asia 2.
And guess what? After a short break I will be back here to bring you TAR Asia 3. A season that aired only months after TAR Asia 2 was completed. Remember that it aired before TAR 13. Once I have finished TAR Asia 3, we will go to our current place in the timeline to blog TAR 15.
Thanks for reading!