The Amazing Race 15 episode 2 ranking

Second leg

“The Most Electrifying Elimination in Reality Entertainment”

Previously on TAR: Because this was a two-round season premiere, there was not a ‘Previously on TAR’ segment used. Therefore I get to make up my own.

Logan’s Edition of Previously on TAR: Five-year-olds were given the opportunity to create the first round of this season of The Amazing Race. The first ever starting line task set a dangerous precedent as teams battled for flights via a luck based task. In addition, a team was eliminated at the starting line task and said “f— you producers” and walked off the set.

Teams then flew to Japan, and it was a race in taxis to the route marker. But that did not matter as not only were teams equalized, but teams participated in the Roadblock thanks to a random roulette wheel. Instead of experiencing the culture, producers created a fake Japanese game show where the lone task was to eat a wasabi bomb in less than two minutes.

Teams then took a group of twenty tourists to the pit stop on foot. And that was it.

Oh, and the team that blew the only skill-based task of the round was saved by a non-elimination, and made everyone wonder why a team was eliminated at the starting line.

Eleven teams remain; how many five year olds will become producers next?

– Phil introduces us to Tokyo. It is the busiest and most populated city in the country. It used to be a tiny fishing village. The good ol’ days.

– Megan & Cheyne, who arrived first at 12:19pm, will depart at 12:19am. They read that they must fly 2, 600 miles to Vietnam. Once in Ho Chi Minh City, they will need to find a bus station and take a two hour bus to the rural village of Cai Be. Once there they will race on foot to the dock where they will search for their next clue.

See? -That- is what The Amazing Race is all about. It is not about searching for license plates at the starting line or playing a stupid Japanese game show inside of the studio. It is about exploring the world, traveling to neat destinations, and doing tasks that reflect the culture of the community.

Too bad this is the leg that will have less than forty minutes while the first round had over forty-five minutes.

– Megan & Cheyne get into a taxi.

MEGAN: Cheyne’s famous phrase is “we’ll figure it out when we get there”.

Yep. That’s why he was nicknamed Cheyne We’ll Figure It Out When We Get There Whitney.

vietnam megan cheyne

Something tells me Cheyne is not happy with this being his phrase.

– Zev & Justin depart second at 12:36am. Justin opens the clue.

ZEV: Great job.

Yeah. That is called sarcasm, Justin. He just mocked that proud feeling you have of unsealing a clue.

– They check out the Internet at the hotel.

JUSTIN: We made sure to tell everyone that Zev has Asperger’s to ensure that we are not viewed as a threat.

Zev then elaborates that it just means he is not much of a people person.

Brilliant strategy, Zev & Justin. Note they are knowingly exploiting that for strategic gain rather than Margie & Luke who exploit it so people feel bad for them and help them beyond what is necessary.

vietnam internet

For instance, it will take a while for Zev to warm up to Japanese tourists at one o’ clock in the morning.

– Lance & Keri depart third at 12:40am. They also head to use the Internet. Lance knows the bickering will affect them time to time. Keri complains the Internet is slow.
vietnam travelocity

I doubt she was accessing the Travelocity website specifically.

LANCE: It’s moving slow because you haven’t filled out all the forms.

vietnam lance layne

vietnam lance layne 2

Here we go again? You mean Lance pretending to commit suicide in front of his fiancee is a regularly occurring thing?

And yes, his name is indeed Lance Layne. That would be like if I was named Logan Loyan.

– Lance refuses to lollygag and find each other because he wants to find himself.

Find himself? Uh, close the door.

vietnam lance keri

In Japan, women aren’t allowed to use computers.

– Marcy & Ron depart fourth at 12:41am. Marcy suggests they use a phone or Internet.

– Globes are fifth at 12:42am. Flight Time reads they have 444 dollars for this leg.

vietnam globetrotters

Departing after midnight? They should be called Night Time and Big Easy.

– They decide to head straight to the airport to book a flight.

FLIGHT TIME: We’re the Harlem Globetrotters. We’re nice people and people respect us, and we’ll use that to our advantage all throughout the race. Why not?

vietnam globetrotters 2
I think Flight Time traded in a basketball for Call of Duty because those eyes are really bugged out.

– Brian & Ericka start sixth at 12:44am. A taxi to the airport they go.

– Gary & Matt are seventh at 12:45am. Into a taxi they go too.

– Globetrotters book a 10:30am flight. We see the Travelocity site twice more. Marcy & Ron book that same flight.

– Garrett & Jessica start in eighth at 12:51am.

vietnam garrett jessica

And so far they are on the same page.

– Jessica tells us that they havezzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz sorry! They have known each other forzzzzzz sorry! They have known each other for seven years but there have been more break-ups than together.

– Garrett says it is close to figuring out whether it is walk down the aisle or walk down the plank.

– Sam & Dan begin in ninth at 12:54am.

SAM: We don’t plan on telling anybody we’re gay. We are going to flirt with the girls and make them think they are throwing us off our game.

vietnam sam dan

kenny big brother canada

How dare you steal my strategy!

– Off to the Interwebs they go too.

– Mika & Canaan start in tenth at 1:03am. The first words to come out of Canaan’s mouth?

vietnam canaan smith

CANAAN: With Mika, I am sexually pure. That is important to me because of my faith.

WHAT I WISH CANAAN HAD SAID: With Mika, I am sexually pure. . .evil!

millie rock

Sexually pure? You have another twelve years to go, buddy.

– Mika likes that Canaan likes her for the right reasons.

MIKA: He likes me for the right reasons. He doesn’t like me so he can have sex. He is a diamond in the rough.

That’s right, Mika. He NEVER wants to have sex with you. He is repulsed by the idea of making love with you. He would rather swim through a tub of his own diarrhea than express physical intimacy together.

– Maria & Tiffany depart last at 3:22am. Somehow they took the penalty just ten minutes after Mika & Canaan checked in. Suspicious.

– Maria will withhold their occupation. Tiffany says that people will help counselors who work for a non-profit organization.

TIFFANY: Who doesn’t want those girls to succeed?

Me. I don’t want you to succeed.

– Tiffany explains the roles for the team.
vietnam tiffany michelle 2

TIFFANY: But you’re definitely the brains.

vietnam tiffany michelle 3

vietnam yau man chan

Yau Man approves.

– Keep in mind that Tiffany is the brawn of the team. Her physical strength will really help them later on during the season.

– Narita Airport! Megan & Cheyne are first to the airport. Brian & Ericka are second. They book tickets on the 10:30am flight. Gary & Matt attempt to book the same.

vietnam mask

And that is why you do not head straight to the airport. If a travel agency is closer, book tickets there.

– Brian asks if he can buy economy priced tickets but be able to sit in business. No luck as of yet for the three teams.

– Maria & Tiffany show up to the airport. Tiffany explains the Speed Bump for us. These four teams are begging to be on the 10:30am flight. Brian is annoyed that Maria & Tiffany piggybacked to be in the same position as Maria & Tiffany.

– Marcy & Ron are now at the airport.

vietnam tiffany michelle 4

Tiffany is piggybacking on prayers as well.

– The teams are uneasy about getting on the flight. Marcy & Ron and Lance & Keri are there. Every team is there. Marcy confirms with the other teams that Maria & Tiffany do not have a flight yet. Lance offers his opinion on Maria & Tiffany.

vietnam maria tiffany
vietnam lance layne 3

He looks like he is going to fatally roundhouse kick them both.

– Lance claims his cutthroat nature as a lawyer is what will push them forward.

– Brian & Ericka succeed. Maria thanks them for begging on behalf of all four teams.

russia tina eyes

But really, it was Tina who arranged for a bigger plane.

– Ericka informs us that all eleven teams are on the same plane to Vietnam.

Eleven teams on the same flight? That may be a race first. Considering only round two of TAR 3 and 4 is where that could be possible, but both seasons did not use planes in the second round.

Therefore, until TAR 25’s inevitable budget cuts where teams are put on the same plane to China, this will be a one-time event.

– Matt whispers to his dad that the two females are shady. Maria & Tiffany know everyone will be upset.
vietnam maria ho

– When Maria is asked directly what flight she is on, she says “she doesn’t know” and refuses to answer the question.

vietnam maria ho 2

Cue glares.

vietnam mika combs

vietnam mika combs 2

Imagine Mika’s reaction when Maria & Tiffany are not virgins because they did not like a man for the right reasons.

– Maria & Tiffany approach somebody in line at the airport. They ask how to pronounce Cai Be.

vietnam tiffany michelle 5

The local tries to get a read on Tiffany.

vietnam poker

vietnam tiffany michelle 6

TIFFANY: Yes.

Wow. The guy weakly calls their bluff and Tiffany folds under the pressure. No, she didn’t fold, actually. She flat out could not resist revealing that she is a top poker player.
vietnam tiffany michelle 7

And yes, Tiffany says ‘yes’ once again. Keep in mind teams are standing nearby.

vietnam sam dan 2

Dan cannot help but overhear.

– You know what would be funny? If the local said this:

“I know exactly who you are. You are a poker player who finished in the top fifteen.”

Yeah, he doesn’t know her name at all. He just knows from the information he guessed at random during the course of the conversation.

– Maria & Tiffany approach the counter as Sam & Dan are next to them with matching orange passport holders. Maria & Tiffany’s read?
vietnam airport

vietnam airport 2
vietnam sam dan mcmillen

Outright say you are poker players within earshot of them, and then they tip you off by acting rather flamboyant?

ive got a secret

ive got a secret 2

They’d be terrible on I’ve Got a Secret. They would just outright say their secret upfront.

– Tiffany discusses how her and Maria are falling in love with Sam & Dan.

vietnam maria tiffany 2

Don’t ask me how that got onto Tiffany’s face.

– The flight takes off.

vietnam flight

robin williams


GOOD MORNING, VIETNAAAAAAM!

– We land.

vietnam circle

You may have heard of Red Square in Russia, but what about Red Circle in Vietnam?

– It’s raining as Sam & Dan and Maria & Tiffany share a taxi van together.

vietnam poker 2

Dan’s version of taunting, taunting, taunting, taunting.

– Globetrotters have a taxi. So do Mika & Canaan. Marcy is amazed by the city.
vietnam flood

In my city, this would be enough to keep all vehicles off the street. Here, the locals act like it is no biggie.

– Cars driving by are relentlessly spraying the cyclists. Tiffany is horrified as the taxi van is passing by mopeds and motorcyclists.
vietnam maria ho 3

Leave it to Ms. Ho to bringing up the idea of being wet and wild. I bet Mika & Canaan will not be wet nor wild in Vietnam.

vietnam spray
It’s like Dave Cruser dropped a thousand bricks into the mud.

– The Globetrotters found out on the plane that Maria & Tiffany are poker players. Game on in their eyes. No more feeling sorry.

– Maria & Tiffany and Sam & Dan are first to the bus station. The first bus is at 3:30pm.

vietnam xemien tay bus station

I would prefer being in their position than being around a flame-vomiting dinosaur again.

– I like that the workers are sweeping during the flood of all things.

vietnam sweep

You may want to wait for it to dry.

– Globetrotters, Mika & Canaan, Marcy & A Hesitant Ron are there.

–  Zev & Justin announce it is a flooded city.

ZEV: I don’t want my shoes to get wet.
JUSTIN: Well, I think that’s gonna happen.
ZEV: Maybe I’ll just take them off.
JUSTIN: Barefoot in Vietnam? You sure you’re ready for that?
ZEV: They’re all doing it.

Let us know how you feel by the end of the round, Zev.

– Maria & Tiffany, Sam & Dan, Globetrotters, and Mika & Canaan board the bus. They do not think many teams will fit on.

vietnam mika canaan

Mika expressing her displeasure with the tight fit on the bus. Meanwhile, Canaan expressing his pleasure with the tight fit in Mika’s shorts.

– Marcy & Ron have five minutes to get on the 3:30pm bus. Zev & Justin start walking in the water.

vietnam zev glassenberg

Zev braved it barefoot after all. Well done.

– Canaan is feeling claustrophobic on the bus as Marcy & Ron are on it now too. In the past I make fun of teams for saying a bus or a train is “crazy full” when it looks easier than my highway university bus experiences for four years, but this may be the first TAR moment to surpass it.

– The first bus leaves as all teams chant for them to go.

BUS #1 (3:30pm)

MARIA & TIFFANY
MIKA &  CANAAN
HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS
SAM & DAN
MARCY & RON

– Zev & Justin book tickets for the 4:45pm bus. So do Gary & Matt, Garrett & Jessica, and Lance & Keri. Garrett asks for an earlier bus but are told two buses leave at the same time.

BUS #2 (4:45pm)

GARY & MATT
BRIAN & ERICKA
ZEV & JUSTIN
MEGAN & CHEYNE
LANCE & KERI/TEAM BOSTON (Brian’s nickname for them)
GARRETT & JESSICA

– Matt saw a bus leave minutes earlier at 3:30pm. He is frightened knowing his bus will not leave for another hour. Brian & Ericka and Megan & Cheyne and Zev & Justin are all pissed and ready to vomit.

– Commercial.

– We resume. They pool their money for 100 per team to get the bus to leave early and cover the rest of the tickets. The driver complies after much begging. The plan works. Teams are probably all within ten minutes of each other.

– The bus has to stop for a second before moving, though. Why? Zev explains.

vietnam chicken

Yep. A chicken did not want to be seated underneath the bus.

– Zev notices one of the workers on the bus is absolutely soaked.

vietnam jacket

vietnam jacket 2

ZEV: This guy needs a jacket. Probably more than me. It looks good.

Although the guy wears it as a scarf. Those jackets will come in handy for the cold Vietnamese nights.

– Ericka is proud of Zev for his goodwill.

vietnam jacket 3

The man is happy to have an American souvenir. But seriously, this round has been ten times better than the first round.

– First bus is in Cai Be. They are heading to Ben Tau Du Lich.

vietnam dock

Oh right. Boat dock. And could there be any more accents fit into that sign?

– Then the teams run into Gid Hoat Dong.

vietnam dock 2

Right. Hours of Dongeration.

– Seeing how it is still daylight out, teams must have barely missed the 5:00pm deadline. Mika is not terribly thrilled of staying overnight. The second bus arrives as all eleven teams prepare for a campout.

vietnam night

This is not going to be a comfortable night for most teams.
vietnam night 2

Luckily this gathering is catered. I assume production set that up.

– Garrett insists to Jessica that the food will taste good. He confirms it.

GARRETT: Definitely think about marriage with Jessica. She is very loyal. Very loving. Very caring. She is a very good person.

vietnam garrett paul
The expression of happiness when thinking about Jessica is undeniable.
vietnam jessica stout

She is also one of a thousand racers to wear a green bandana. Donald, Brendan & Rachel, Geoff 26 & Tisha 31, the list goes on.

– Tiffany is used to picking up information from people. We watch Justin ask Zev if he wants him to teach him how to use chopsticks. Zev declines the offer.

TIFFANY: Zev & Justin are our least favourite team. We’ve never gotten warm vibes off of them.

vietnam zev justin

ZEV: They told us they work with homeless kids but I don’t see that at all. They don’t give out the “giving and help you out” vibe.

vietnam maria tiffany 3

Wait a minute. . .you hate the most likeable and honest team who gave away their jacket to a complete stranger, and they dislike you because you lie about working with the homeless?

So you hate the people that perform good deeds and follow their hearts, while you sit around pulling stunts for camera time? Good to know, Maria and Tiffany.

– Lance says he does not understand the culture because he has wet sneakers and wet socks. Not a place where he wants a summer home. Maria & Tiffany question whether Lance is a lawyer because he comes off as a meathead.

– The sun arises. Virtually nothing has happened over the past fifteen minutes. . .and that is great. All we have had is fifteen minutes of character scenes. That is fine by me.

– TAR embraces the use of their southeast Asia soundtrack. The thumbs up is given and the gate is taken away. A mad dash to the boats.

– Teams read that they must now race through the Mekong Delta by boats to the mud pits. There they must work together to collect nutrient mud and transport it to fertilize a nearby fruit tree. Once they have covered the root system to the designated red line, they will receive their next clue from the farmer.

vietnam mud

If you thought your feet were soaked, just wait for the mud to cover your hands!

vietnam farmer
For once, TAR chooses a farmer that does not have a strange appearance.

– Zev is holding a map to the fruit farm.

vietnam fruit farm

Such a scientific map.

– Maria & Tiffany see their faces on the Speed Bump. Phil explains that they must find a soup stand and order ingredients for a traditional Vietnamese soup known as fa.

vietnam soup

Fa.

– They must then return to the dock and combine the soup to the dock master’s liking to receive their next clue.
vietnam soup 2

I feel bad for the guy starving in the distance.

– And yes, this Speed Bump sounds really easy.

– Megan explains her and Cheyne are currently ahead of the pack. Lots of yelling over the loud motors between every team. Plenty of cheering. Canaan admits he does not have a fear of water.

MIKA: I have a little fear of water.
CANAAN: A little bit?
MIKA: I am just learning how to swim so I’m doing everything I can to overcome it.

vietnam mika canaan 2

Hint: She won’t do everything she can to overcome it.

– Dogs bark at Maria & Tiffany as they run to the soup stand. The brawn would do the physical labour, yes?
vietnam maria tiffany 4

Yep. Maria is the brawn of the team too. The 24-style split screen also creates a timer on the bottom of the screen. How odd.

– Megan & Cheyne jump out of the boat. Well, Cheyne jumps out first. Instead of choosing to land on the wooden platform, he chooses to jump into the mud.

vietnam cheyne whitney

And boy oh boy, he is stuck.

– They eventually get out and start scooping mud. The problem is that they cannot figure out how to step out of the mud pit.

– Marcy is next to jump out of the boat. Ron follows without squeezing her butt in the process.

– Garrett & Jessica jump out of the boat in third. Jessica narrates that the task is working out. There is an awkward pause after she finishes her confessional. It is like producers are waiting for more.

– Speed Bump progress: It is practically done. Because Maria is Vietnamese (well, she doesn’t say she is Vietnamese but anyone with the last name Ho, Tran, or Nguyen is Vietnamese to me) and she served the fa because she eats fa in her every day life.

vietnam dock 3

Mikey Nguyen–he likes it.

– They have their clue. The brawn, brains, boobs, and cook of the team completed it quickly. The person who does not have those roles on the team. . .

vietnam maria tiffany 5
Not a top fifteen gymnast.

– Cheyne says they have embraced getting down and dirty and are “rocking it”.

vietnam megan cheyne 2

Clearly they do not rinse off the mud for quite a while.

– Lance says the task is disgusting. Garrett is slipping. Matt helps Cheyne stand up as Cheyne thinks taking his shoes off will help him. Brian thinks the mud is like concrete.

ERICKA: The mud was nice.
BRIAN: I liked it.
ERICKA: It was. . .(swinging her shoulders) sensual.

vietnam brian ericka

Anything to save a relationship and hold off divorce for one more year.

– I am glad that the production crew does not pick bizarre looking individuals for the purposes of comedy like they did in the premiere or farming tasks in other seasons. Such a refreshing change.

vietnam local

vietnam local 2

I knew it was too good to be true.

– Gary & Matt say they do this in the country because it is like baking a cake. Garrett accidentally splashes Jessica’s face with mud. Canaan wants Mika to transport the mud but finds it heavy.

– Megan & Cheyne complete the task. They must ride their boat back to the boat and walk on foot to Cai Be Field.

– Maria & Tiffany are now last to the mud boats. Tiffany slips again.

– Garrett & Jessica finish the task in second place. Brian & Ericka’s yellow thong finish the task in third. Gary & Matt done in fourth. Globetrotters finish in fifth. Sam & Dan sixth.

vietnam route info

The route info is tiny.

– TIFFANY: Girls in mud. So sexy.

Yes, girls in mud is disgusting. . .unless it involves wrestling.

– The teams all have to yell out “Farmer check!” to be approved. Marcy & Ron are seventh. Team Boston/Lance & Keri are eighth. Zev & Justin are ninth. Justin tries entering the boat to retrieve their pouch.

vietnam justin kanew

vietnam justin kanew 2

vietnam justin kanew 3

vietnam local 3
Not a good day for them.

And it’s about to get worse.

vietnam clue

I guess that route info shown on the bottom is not the current clue. Zev also asked if it fell out of Justin’s pockets when he bailed.

– Mika & Canaan finish the task in tenth place. A physical task shall doom Maria & Tiffany for good.

– Commercial..

– We resume. Zev & Justin still do not have their clue. They tell the driver to turn around. Zev asks Justin to check his pockets some more. Mika & Canaan are now ahead.

– Justin finds the clue back in the mud boat. Maria & Tiffany are finished and prepare to leave. Tiffany proves her role as the brawn to get Maria back on the boat.
vietnam maria tiffany 6

In Tiffany’s strength, we trust.

– Maria instead swims back to the platform and enters the boat on her own.

– Megan & Cheyne share a muddy kiss upon reaching shore. They notice a festival is going on.
vietnam dog duck

Oooh! A dog! And ducks!

vietnam band

What the man on the far left is playing is beyond me.

vietnam band 2

Seriously, what is that?

– Cheyne comments on the beauty of the Vietnamese singer’s talents.

vietnam lady

I wonder what song she is singing? Eh, it doesn’t matter. Viewers are never upset with Vietnamese music on The Amazing Race.


vietnam song

Ah. Right.

vietnam song 2

The J-Pop costumes get me every time.

vietnam song 3

Believe it or not, you are looking at the biggest all stars of all time in this photo!

vietnam duck

That would be one really long game of Duck, Duck, Goose.

ROADBLOCK: Who is feeling just ducky?
land before time ducky

She is. Yep, yep, yep.


.
.
.
.
jon cryer duckie

Oh please. Nobody cares about you Jon Cryer.

PHIL: In Vietnam, farmers use hungry ducks to rid their rice patties  of damaging insects. Teams will need to learn how to get and keep their ducks in a row. . .literally.

vietnam phil

Duck off with those puns, Phil. Only Allan Wu may do puns.

– One team member will join in a local farmer’s festival. Using only a couple flags as a guide, they will have ten minutes to herd a flock of 150 ducks over a bridge and back again then return them to their pen. If they do not complete the task within the time limit, they will relinquish their spot in the lineup and wait for another turn. If they finish in less than ten, they will receive their next clue.

vietnam farmer 2

Between TAR Asia 3 and TAR 3, 10, and 15, we are getting acquainted with Vietnamese farmers quite well.

– Megan is doing the Roadblock.

vietnam duck 2

That is embarrassing.

– Megan is having a tough time with flags so far.

vietnam globetrotters 2

vietnam megan rickey

FLags, Globetrotters. Flags. With an ‘L’. No need to act so horrified.

– Garrett & Jessica are second to the Roadblock. Jessica responds to the beautiful music, but Garrett yells at her to focus and make her way to the clue box. Garrett volunteers Jessica for it.

GARRETT: Who is feeling ducky? You are.
JESSICA (super squeaky voice): I am!

bilal denial

All that is left is for her to say that it wasn’t a pIT STOP!

– Garrett wants her to begin right away but she is reading the clue first. Cheyne and Garrett are finding the task amusing.

– Brian & Ericka are third to the Roadblock. Ericka is doing it.

BRIAN: I knew she could do it. I would kill one of those ducks.

vietnam brian kleinschmidt

Needless to say I believe him.

heathers

I hung out with Brian, and he was more than willing to hunt down and prepare this EXCELLENT pate.

ERICKA: Work it out! Everybody shake a duckfeather.

vietnam ericka dunlap
shake ya tailfeather

Yeah. Too much Nelly for her when she was growing up in the early 2000s. Trust me. This song was outdated by 2009.

– Matt, Sam, and Flight Time are all doing the Roadblock.

– Megan and Jessica are both struggling.

– Matt uses duck noises to get them over the bridge. All of the male players are getting the ducks over the bridge by the looks of it. I think there are six pens set up for teams. A lone duck escapes Sam.

vietnam duck 3

vietnam duck 4
Escape, my duckfeathered friend. This is your only chance!

– Sam returns the duck to the herd. Impressive.

– Lance volunteers Keri for it. Mika and Marcy are both doing it too.

– Megan’s time expired. She failed her first attempt. Will Jessica succeed?

vietnam jessica stout 2

“If you join the herd, I will buy you ice cream.”

vietnam garrett paul 2
undertaker

Garrett pulls out the Undertaker eyes. Now he is mad.

– Do you know how the last quote from Ericka was a Nelly song? Well, from an African-American rap artist, we now go to an African-American Motown group.

ERICKA: Stop in the name of love!

vietnam ericka dunlap 2
The chances of her referencing The Offspring or Theory of a Dead Man are about as high as her pulling up her pants.

– Brian yells that the ducks can understand how she feels. Cheyne and Jessica are both exhausted. Garrett is silent as he breaks into a confessional where he informs us that Jessica is a quick fuse who can be tough to deal with.

vietnam guess

Who knew Guess had a Vietnam fan base.

– Sam finishes the Roadblock first. He reads that they merely have to continue walking. And what do ya know, it’s a pit stop. They must search for the Cai Be Market and find the Bassac III Riverboat on the Mekong River.

I wish there was a Detour, but because of the shortened round due to the 2-hour premiere, we sadly go a second round in a row without a Detour.

– Matt is done the task in second. He cites being on the farm as the reason for his success. Ericka exits towards the bridge but forgot to close the pen. All of the ducks escaped.

– Maria & Tiffany are tenth to the Roadblock. Tiffany is doing it, and you will not believe why.

TIFFANY: I had ducks growing up. I knew if we could be proficient and so fast, we could make up a lot of ground.

vietnam maria tiffany 7

Wow. Production gave her literally the only task she could do. Unless they have the final leg in Las Vegas for the first time in history and have a task involving poker chips.

– Lots of screaming from teams on the sidelines. Flight Time finishes the task in third. Keri is done in fourth. Mika refuses to bend her knees when using the flags.

– Zev sees the other team members freaking out. Tranquil music begins to play.

ZEV: When we first arrived, I saw everybody freaking out a little bit. I was like “you don’t need to do that. Just relax.”

vietnam zev justin 2

JUSTIN: You’re the duck whisperer. Who knew?
ZEV: Even I didn’t know.

Zev even has his hands in a meditating position.

– Justin crowns him the duck whisperer as Megan & Cheyne are amazed by Zev’s herding abilities. Teams are following Zev’s lead of being calm. Brian is calming down a bit. Canaan and Mika continue to scream and whine. Mika stomps her feet when time expires.

vietnam canaan smith 2

You wouldn’t be the first country singer to do that to a loved one.

– Canaan pulls her aside to tell her she can do this, and if they don’t they will be eliminated.

vietnam mika canaan 3
But he may have gone too far.

– Sam & Dan are learning that both want to take the leadership role. Both fight about their differing ideas. Dan is in a huge rush as they call each other morons. Something about canals and asking locals to help. Flight Time is too tired to run. Gary & Matt are operating well. Flight Time sees the brothers from Kansas City. A marked flag is seen. Who will be first?

vietnam pit stop greeter

Nice beard.

vietnam gary matt

FIRST PLACE: GARY & MATT

vietnam gary matt 2

They are excited because father-son teams always have a horrible time on The Amazing Race.

dave o' leary crutches funny

Yeah. Remember this is 2009. Gary hasn’t ruptured his achilles, and this is not 2014 yet. Back then you had teams like Dennis & Andrew, Mel & Mike, and Steve & Josh as the only father-son representatives. Tougher times back then.

– Their prize? They have each won a kayak. Gary feels great and that it is priceless because it has brought them closer together than they ever have been in years.

– Scramble on the streets as three teams are running.
vietnam finish
SECOND PLACE: SAM & DAN

THIRD PLACE: HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS

– Phil refers to the Globetrotters as Herb & Nate.

vietnam phil 2

“Flight Time? Big Easy? Unless CBS orders me to do so, I will just call them Herb and Nate thank you very much.”

– I like how the music keeps up in tempo but drops the second Lance & Keri hit the mat as Phil merely says “you are team number four”.

FOURTH PLACE: LANCE & KERI

Yeah. They don’t even get referred to by name. I guess the final cut decided to drop .5 seconds where Phil says “Lance and Keri. . .”.

– Zev finishes the Roadblock in fifth. Guess who finishes the task in sixth?
vietnam maria tiffany 8

Heaven is freezing over as we speak.

– Megan is finished the task in seventh. Cheyne cheers. They start running. Canaan screams encouragement at Mika until she finishes. Currently in eighth. His laugh sounds psychotic.

– Marcy is finishes the task in ninth. She utters a very Mario-like “yahoo” quietly. They run off.

– A showdown between Ericka and Jessica. The other nine teams have all finished. Brian comments on the showdown. Garrett tells Jessica to do it up and down. He hates she can never calm her down and assumes Jessica is shutting down from him. Such a healthy relationship.

BRIAN: These ducks are killing us!
GARRETT: Jessi! Like this!
JESSI: Stawwwwwp.
GARRETT: Jessi is struggling. She does not want to hear it from me. She shut off. That’s the biggest problem with us. I can never calm her down.
BRIAN: Er! Get some of them in so they follow each other.
ERICKA: This isn’t easy, Brian! Don’t you dare be disappointed with me!

vietnam brian kleinschmidt 2

He is not disappointed, but that doesn’t save us from the sight looking like a two year old diva pouting.

– Jessica has time expire once again.  Ericka fails too. Dating couples bickering and doing awful in a task that requires you to be calm.

– Commercial.

– Jessica returns to her not wanting to talk to Garrett. She reminds herself to be calm. Jessica starts sweet-talking the ducks. Brian advises Ericka to be calm too.

BRIAN: Only two teams left and we need to at least get a bronze medal here.

vietnam podium

If only the model of the Brian Kleinschmidt Podium caught on.

FIFTH PLACE: ZEV & JUSTIN

– Zev wants to do well and wants to show people he can do normal things. Then he mocks his own speech with a fist pump into the air yelling “yeah!”.

Zev is awesome.

SIXTH PLACE: MEGAN & CHEYNE

SEVENTH PLACE: MARIA & TIFFANY

They hug each other as Megan & Cheyne stand aside.

EIGHTH PLACE: MIKA & CANAAN

They step aside for the next team.

NINTH PLACE: MARCY & RON

Ron keeps it an honest hug.

– Ericka corners the ducks. She calls them suckers and taunts them that she is eating their friends for tonight. Jessica is only a few ducks away from finishing. Brian calls her Noah. Ericka begs them to go into the pen. Brian wants her to turn them. It works.

ERICKA: I’m eating duck for dinner.

This task did so well to promote the ethical treatment of animals.

– Jessica is shown finishing seconds later in the same frame. It is a foot race. Brian & Ericka are running. Garrett begs Jessica to run but Jessica’s running is. . .well, not exactly running.

TENTH PLACE: BRIAN & ERICKA

Once again, Brian & Ericka save themselves at the last second after a disastrous Roadblock.

LAST PLACE: GARRETT & JESSICA

PHIL: Garrett & Jessica, this is the end of your amazing race. I am sorry to tell you you are the last team to arrive. I am sorry to tell you that you have been eliminated from the race.

Phil surprisingly went off script here.

vietnam garrett jessica 2

The most electrifying elimination in reality entertainment.

Do you recall how Garrett hates that Jessica has a fiery temper which cannot be controlled because of her Colombian roots?

vietnam garrett jessica 3

Garrett starts roaring in anger as he tries his hardest to rip off the roof from the boat. Phil begins to worry.

PHIL: Does he normally get angry like this all the time?

vietnam phil 3

“And does he know that this boat rental expires at five o’ clock, and if that roof breaks we will not get our safety deposit back which is reserved to boost the budget for TAR 24?”

– Jessica agrees and says this is something that they wanted to do this together as a team. Garrett believes they are stronger than what their placing shows.

GARRETT: I think Jessica kept a really cool head most of the time on the race, and that’s what I look for in a life partner. Somebody who can keep a cool head and be calm through life’s criseses. So, I don’t know if we’re closer to marriage. You never know.

Yes, he said criseses.

vietnam garrett jessica 4

Before they can marry, Garrett really needs to reveal that he is The Undertaker in disguise. Look at those eyes!
vietnam garrett jessica 5

She is better off finding out that he is really Michael Jackson’s Thriller in disguise at the end of the episode instead.

Next Time on TAR: Zev & Justin get smashed. And Lance unleashes.

And that concludes the final day where I never missed an episode of The Amazing Race (the first two rounds were crammed into a two-hour season premiere). I am now entering relatively unknown territory.

CONFESSIONAL COUNT

BRIAN.ERICKA 5.3
LANCE.KERI 2.1
MARIA.TIFFANY 3.6
ZEV.JUSTIN 6.4
MIKA.CANAAN 2.3
FLIGHT TIME.BIG EASY 2.1
SAM.DAN 4.2
GARY.MATT 3.3
GARRETT.JESSICA 4.4
MARCY.RON 2.1
MEGAN.CHEYNE 3.2

Team Averages

Bulls— Round One/Starting Line Eliminations
Eric & Lisa N/A
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 Neena & Amit 10.0
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.)
11th Garrett & Jessica 9.5
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 Isaac & William 7.5
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’. :/)
–D minus–
8th Tom & Terry 7.0
8th Dave & Margaretta 7.0 R.I.P. Margaretta
9th Lena & Kristy 7.0
10th Hope & Norm 7.0
7th Niroo & Kapil 6.75
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
8th Pailin & Natalie 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
–D+–
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
–C minus–
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
6th Mai & Oliver 4.8 – In a car
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
–B minus–
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
4th A.D. & Fuzzie 3.90 – U-Turned
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
–B+–
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
3rd Ida & Tania 3.54
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
–A minus–
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 Geoff 26 & Tisha 31 – Used Yield and U-Turn
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–
5th Henry & Bernie/Bunn-Eh 2.75 – Yielded
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 Vince & Sam 2.45 FF
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 Legs

1) Tokyo, Japan -> Cai Be, Vietnam

Producers must have known it was going to be a two-hour two round season premiere beforehand, because there are very few tasks this round.

Placing mud against fruit trees, walking to a farmer’s festival to herd ducks, and walking to the pit stop were the only things they did.

Yes, there was a flight and bus scramble, but none of that mattered as all teams were on the same plane and all teams were equalized at the docks.

The best part about this round is that editors went back to traditional TAR 1 style of editing. There were few tasks, and were crammed into the end of the episode. Their focus was instead on ten of the eleven teams. I say ten because Marcy & Ron were rarely shown for the whole episode.

A surprising amount of focus was on Maria & Tiffany and Sam & Dan. The Globetrotters may go on to play three times, but they were really near the bottom for airtime. Zev & Justin stole the show for their rollercoaster ride as Justin choked with losing the clue but Zev not only gave away his jacket to a stranger but made up a ton of time at the duck herding task.

Maria & Tiffany could have been the first team in TAR history to play two rounds of TAR and finish with a 11.0 average, but the Roadblock being a duck herding task which Tiffany did when she was a kid may be the biggest miracle they could have hoped for.

We learn about Tiffany’s identity because, well, she flat out revealed it to a stranger with teams within earshot, and made the episode about her. God she’s so selfish.

Oh, and the Speed Bump was super easy as usual. People have been complaining that the Country Singers had it too easy with Speed Bumps in TAR 24, but viewers forget that easy Speed Bumps date all the way back to TAR 15. Serving soup or transporting a typewriter?

Even with the faults of this round, it was still ten times the first round. Because instead of it being a cheap game show, this round truly felt like we were watching The Amazing Race.

Oh, and Garrett & Jessica were eliminated. How tragic.

2) Los Angeles, USA -> Tokyo, Japan

Oh god. Where to begin? The design for this round is worse than I remembered. I fully understand now why I quit watching TAR until TAR 20 after this episode aired.

Nothing makes sense. I know this world cannot function without a few idiots in the mix, but did all of them need to be working on the design for The Amazing Race 15?

Every decision they made needs to be followed by a chorus of “Why?!”

Why did they need to eliminate the first team at the starting line?

Why did we need a task at the starting line? What does searching for license plates have to do with the city of Los Angeles or Tokyo?

Why not let teams drive to LAX and determine their own order for flights?

Why do a task at the starting line when you can only do two tasks in Japan?

When the starting line task is essentially in a studio, why did we need the Tokyo task to be in a studio too? What does a game show inside of  a Japanese studio have to do with Japanese culture?

Why make it an equalizer at the Roadblock to negate any reason for putting teams on separate flights?

Why make it a randomized order of who eats the wasabi rolls rather than the order of when they arrived?

Why have those unique graphics that make it look like they are meant for a Nickelodeon or YTV game show?

Why have the pit stop immediately after the Roadblock?

Why couldn’t Maria & Tiffany keep track of their tourists?

Why have a non-elimination in a round where you eliminated somebody at the starting line? That is extraordinarily insulting to Eric & Lisa.

What a waste for an awesome location like Tokyo.

I will go on record to say that this is the worst leg design in the history of The Amazing Race. It was awful from start to finish.

P.S. Not only did Eric & Lisa skip out on Elimination Station, but they also refused to be at the Finish Line. It was their stance against putting up with this awful twist which prevented it from appearing ever again.

Rank the Teams

1) Eric & Lisa

Perhaps the only team from California this season that may have been cast as mactors, but had a worthy enough personality that you can understand why they have been cast.

You can see they thought being eliminated was as dumb as we all assessed it to be too.

I can only imagine how they watched from home seeing teams get approved by luck alone. . .and see a team be saved by non-elimination in the very first round.

If only they could have been numero freakin’ uno. They join Bilal & Sa’eed in the Super Duper Screwed teams in TAR history. Both teams would have been interesting to see go further, and both were robbed of a journey they worked so hard for.

Oh well.

2) Garrett & Jessica

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ.

That’s what you would be saying if it were not for my blog. I tried my best to make Garrett & Jessica entertaining for you. The most electrifying team in reality entertainment, Jessica as Colombiana, and Garrett’s Undertaker eyes.

They could not be a more boring team. Okay, maybe not as boring as Kris & Jon from The Amazing Race 14. . .wait, is that their real names? Ah, fudge it.

If I were a producer, these two would never be cast. Garrett sucks the energy out of a confessional. Jessica is not a great speaker either. If I was the person interviewing them in casting and after both pit stops, I would question my reason for living. I would beg to interview any other team.

Heck, I would beg to interview a blade of grass. I would hate to know who was the 13th team cut in favour of Garrett & Jessica to be on the show.

Garrett proposes to Jessica at Elimination Station. You can tell how healthy that marriage turned out.

In any event, you’re welcome, Garrett & Jessica. Because if it were not for me, nobody on the planet would remember you on The Amazing Race.

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