The Amazing Race 16 round four rankings

Fourth episode

“This is a Pre-Determined Non-Elimination Leg By Allison Grodner”

COUNTRIES VISITED

CHILE – ARGENTINA – GERMANY – FRANCE – SEYCHELLES – MALAYSIA – SINGAPORE – CHINA – UNITED STATES

Previously on TAR: Seven teams, and two new teams named Steve & Allie and Monique & Shawne who were added to the cast, and crossed the Andes.

Carol & Brandy had their sights on the Cowboys, but when Carol got tangled up at the Roadblock, Jet & Cord lassoed their way into the lead claiming their second consecutive victory.

At the Detour Carol & Brandy duked it out further straining their relationship.

Steer roping had Shawne tied up.

giles 2

“I came up with that one!”

Then the Moms struggled at the polo field. Exhausted, Monique & Shawne came up short.

Seven teams remain; who will be eliminated next?

Number of Episodes Where a Team is Specifically Mentioned in the Previously On. . . Segment

JET & CORD: 2
BRENT & CAITE: 2
HEIDI & JOE: 1
JODY & SHANNON: 1
DAN & JORDAN: 1
JEFF & JORDAN: 1
DANA & ADRIAN: 1
CAROL & BRANDY: 1
MONIQUE & SHAWNE: 1

Although they received ten minutes of airtime for three hours of being delayed due to sickness, Brent & Caite eluded the Previously On segment for the first time all season. Somehow their most intriguing moment was not a major highlight to producers.

– Intro time. Hold up. There’s eight teams. My bad. Steve & Allie are in the cast.

– More Cowboy music plays as Phil introduces us to rugged Patagonia and is like the American West. Scattered with livestock and ranches. Heh, hearing Phil say the name of the pit stop sounds funny and offensive.

– Jet & Cord receive the vacation of a lifetime! A return trip to Patagonia for eleven days from Travelocity!

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Which may or may not include breakfast. . .in bed!

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But because this is not TAR 24, the prize is a step above breakfast in bed for Jet & Cord. Their gnome buddy is now an honourary homophobic cowboy.

– Jet & Cord depart first at 10:57pm. Their arrival time is unknown. They read that they must fly to Frankfurt, Germany. Yep, time to fly over eight thousand miles to Germany. Once there they must catch a train to the city of Hamburg. Once there they must race on foot to the Jungfernstieg Street where they will find their next clue.

germany intersection

And the most random twist in TAR history! The return of the Intersection!

Other TAR franchises use the Intersection twist as an annual event each season. The American franchise is known for running a twist several seasons in a row until it is permanently retired. The only other exception will be the Switchback later on.

But here? The Intersection appears for the first time since its initial experiments for TAR 10 and 11. Producers decide to do nothing meaningful with it for this season too, and the twist never returns in a US season after this episode.

– If you love American Intersections, savour this moment.

– Jet points out the lights in amazement.

CORD: There’s cities all over the world, Jet. We’re from the country if you can’t tell.

germany city

They are flashing more colours than yellow!

– Jet & Cord decide to pull over and ask some people. They find Hayland Travel. The first flight is at 11:10am. Translation: All other teams are bound to catch up. Jet is pissed that there is an eleven hour wait.

Before Jet & Cord arrived at the travel agency, I believe they found the same ladies of the night that Charla & Mirna ran into in South America during TAR 5.

germany women

Once again, they denied having their faces shown.

– JET: It’s going to be a foot race in Frankfurt!

Oh shut yo mouth.

– So we see scenic Patagonia as Jet & Cord head to the airport.

germany moon

germany sun

Wow! Jet & Cord have a seven hour lead on the other seven teams!

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They did it again. For the second time in three episodes, TAR makes the unprecedented move of showing only the first team leaving the pit stop. Obviously if a team other than Brent & Caite, Jet & Cord, or Jeff & Jordan finish first, we will likely see every team make an appearance again.

Last week we saw all nine teams depart because of Brent & Caite’s three hour sickness. Otherwise I bet producers would have not bothered to show the departures at all.

– Caite talks about relating her experiences in the race to a kids’ show.

CAITE: We’re kinda like Even Stevens with everybody.

shia labeouf

That’s right. Once a Shia Labeouf fan, always a Shia Labeouf fan.

I have never seen an episode of Even Stevens. I remember my friend Thomas from elementary school said it was his favourite TV show, and because it aired on the Disney channel, I laughed at him for it.

I still do to this day over twelve years later.
youtube screencap

Oh, and the people who still like Even Stevens are creepy and depressing as hell. Nobody ever liked “if a chicken had lips could it whistle”. One man remembers it as the line being funny.

One man.

And yeah, I don’t know exactly know what the top commenter in the screen cap had in mind.

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But it may have been along the lines of this.

– Louie introduces himself to the Cowboys as brothers from another mother. They discuss their hatred for being at the bottom of the pack.

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Michael has yet to understand how this is possible.

germany airport

New strategy: Leech off of the Cowboys’ airtime by talking to them and aligning with them!

– Brandy says her and Carol did not listen to each other very well last round. Carol adds that two strong women are bound to clash.

CAROL: The word of the day is ‘respectful’.

germany carol brandy

You mean Word of the Minute, don’t you?

– All eight teams are on the plane. Jeff & Jordan have been non-entities since the second round. Dan & Jordan discuss how Dan is strictly doing this race for Jordan because this is the only thing Jordan ever wanted to do. Dan admits he hates traveling.

Who knew there would be a Jordan who would be getting more airtime than Jordan Lloyd in this season.

– All teams are on the same plane to Buenos Aires.

– Michael & Louie and Jet & Cord are flying to Frankfurt via Paris. France. Not to be confused with Paris, Texas.

– Carol & Brandy and Dan & Jordan have a direct flight to Frankfurt.

– Joe & Heidi, Steve & Allie, Brent & Caite, and Jordan & Jeff are flying to Frankfurt via Sao Paolo.

2:35PM: FIRST FLIGHT TO LAND

JET & CORD
MICHAEL & LOUIE

Both teams book tickets onto a 3:37pm train to Hamburg, Germany. Jet says he watched a video of a lady falling on the tracks.

santiago jet cord mccoy

We saw a lady landing on the high voltage, and the electricity made her body flashing yellow.

3:00PM SECOND FLIGHT TO LAND

CAROL & BRANDY
DAN & JORDAN

They run together to pick up the train tickets. Only three minutes remain to board the train. It appears both teams ran together to race to the train. Suspense as to whether or not they will make it. Jordan and Brandy disagree over the directions. Brandy is the one who was right. They miss the train by about twenty seconds. Brandy yells in a Coach-like manner.

germany carol brandy 2

Wow, not even Maria & Tiffany ever forfeited a task that quickly.

3:40PM FINAL FLIGHT

BRENT & CAITE
JEFF & JORDAN
JOE & HEIDI
THAT OTHER TEAM

CAROL (strangest Iago-like voice when the other teams appear): We would have been ahead of them!

Is Carol possessed?

– The four teams meet up with Carol & Brandy and Dan & Jordan. The Rhode Island Rattlesnakes describe it as a relief to see other teams in sight.

– The first train gets into Hamburg.

germany cord mccoy

Cord’s bags are saturated with stetson protectors. He has only one other pair of pants, but he does have twelve pieces of plastic designed specifically to keep his cowboy hat dry.

And if that doesn’t work, he has five cowboy hats in his backpack too.

– Jet & Cord find the Intersection clue in Hamburg. Phil has to refresh our memories for the first time in five seasons. He does not bother telling us what their first task would be.

– Cord calls out Louie’s name. They joke around Michael & Louie for being slow. What is Michael’s reaction to seeing he must work with another team rather than rely on his own abilities?

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“Can we have an Intersection occur on every leg whenever we are riding with the current frontrunners of the season?”

– Michael & Louie must consider their decision carefully. Do they work with the only options available or do they wait to work with Jody & Shannon?
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Louie create his own option of shooting the Cowboys multiple times each despite Jet & Cord shouting “hands up, don’t shoot”. Oh, when will Louie learn.

But seriously, Michael & Louie chose to work with Peggy & Claire after much deliberation.
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Alright, Jet & Cord and Michael & Louie teamed up. I do not understand why it took Louie so long to declare it.

– Each of the past two Intersections were Detours. This time it is a crazy twist where it is a Roadblock.

JET: Who’s ready to reach new heights?

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Hint: Not Louie.

– The newly partnered Roadblockers must take a train together to Hamburg Harbour. Once there they must perform a 150-foot bungee jump tandem in the middle of the city. Once that is done they will receive their next clue and be done with the Intersection for the season.

Again, WHAT A WASTE OF AN INTERSECTION!!!!!! WHAT’S THE F—ING POINT?!

germany phil keoghan

To show off Phil’s fancy new gloves?

– Jet and Michael are doing the Roadblock. Jet informs us that “metro” to him means “city or metropolitan”. He says he would have been screwed if Michael was not there to clarify that.

That’s right. Jet & Cord finished first in the past two cowboy-oriented rounds, but once they enter the city they would have been screwed if not for the only Intersection in the past twenty-four seasons since TAR All Stars.

MICHAEL: City and country is going to work together today.

Oh my god. We get it.

– The six teams hop off of the second train. Let the scramble begin!
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Cord and Louie watch the drama unfold.

– Joe & Heidi and Steve & Allie team up. Guess who gets to commentate on this pairing between the two teams?

germany joe heidi wang

Answer: Not Steve & Allie.

Oddly enough, this is not the first person Jon Gosselin has been in a relationship with who has a hairstyle involving pigtails.

– Allie and Heidi read the clue in odd unison. Steve & Allie found a guy on the train named Klaus who led them to the clue box, and will continue leading them to the train.

germany woman

As for the woman on the left? We will never know her role in helping Joe & Heidi and Steve & Allie.

– Allie is doing the Roadblock with Big Joe Wang. Joe insists for Klaus to follow them to the harbour.

germany klaus

“Why is that man leaving his wife for a younger woman in front of her? Are Americans more Liberal than us Germans?”

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Klaus trying to tell his ride that he’ll be a few more minutes before they can head to the pub for the evening.

– Wasn’t it three o’ clock in the afternoon when the trains left the airport? How is it already dark?

– Dan & Jordan and Carol & Brandy get to the Intersection together.

JORDAN: There is something about my brother and Brandy where they just hit it off.
DAN: But I knew she liked Carol. She’s like the Lesbian aunt I never had.

Dan already has a gay brother, so he may as well have a gay aunt to add to that.

germany carol brandy 3

Can we stop and appreciate this for a second?

Dan is a guy who hates reality TV. He is not part of that flamboyant and/or nerdy and/or middle-aged culture that makes up roughly-nine ninety percent of all reality TV viewers.

Dan is just a young dude from Rhode Island doing a TV show because his brother has been watching it on the couch for years. I bet most of Dan’s time is spent watching sports, drinking beers, and hanging out with his buddies in town.

So he gets on this show. There are a bunch of teams in their 20s. Some are cowboys, some are stars who share Dan’s interests. There are middle-aged cops who get along with the other racers.

There are two other teams who are nice, family-oriented too, and are easy to get along with on the race.

Then there’s the final option remaining. A pair of middle-aged angry Lesbian women who frequently bully other teams.

And this is the team that Dan chooses to be his new BFFs. That kills me. It would be like if one of my three brothers decided to talk to a woman they were not sexually attracted to unless it was a family reunion of sorts. It just doesn’t happen with people like them.

So to see Dan naturally gravitate to Carol & Brandy is awesome. You wouldn’t see this amongst Dan’s demographic in real life.

– Carol volunteers Brandy and Jordan volunteers “Daniel”.

– Brandy said she would handle all heights, but “never ever ever ever” wanted to experience bungee jumping after her first time prior to the race.

germany carol brandy 4

Bungee jumping which is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for most people on The Amazing Race?

Already did that. Bo-ring!

– Dan and Brandy find a local who will lead them to the harbour. Her name is unknown. Dan describes this woman’s “good English” as a big game changer.

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That woman happens to be wearing the same outfit which Phil wore during TAR 4.

phil turtleneck 1

She totally stole it!!!

– The brains of the operation: Jeff & Jordan and Brent & Caite are doing the Intersection together. They decide Caite and Jordan will do it. Jordan has never done traveling like this before and lets Caite lead the way.

germany caite jordan

This could be a long leg for them. Map reading is up to Caite.

– Brent says that Caite will do well at directions because Caite lived in New York for a while.

– Guess what happens two seconds later?

germany caite upton
Caite points in the opposite direction as she learns they are heading the wrong way. Jordan is clueless and thinks the locals are asking about her lucky red hat.

– Commercial break. We resume. Jordan recaps for us that she was told they are heading the wrong way.

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“What do we do? Cast a spell to make the wheels turn around?”

– They jump off the metro and switch lines. Caite says the board in Hamburg is not specific enough.

germany brent caite 2

Now presenting the only Intersection Reminder Graphic used in TAR history!

germany caite upton 2

Caite’s metro skills indicate why she is more Miss North Carolina than she is Miss New York.

– Jet & Michael find the magical red arrow and see the cranes. They must prepare in the tent.

germany purple

According to Michael, real men wear purple.

germany hat

Safety concern. Jet will likely fall off when diving off of the crane and being suspended upside-down above the harbour.

MICHAEL: He says he won’t.
JET: It will stay on.

germany jet mccoy

He is indeed using Oklahoma brand superglue for cowboys. I have a feeling the chemicals are why Cord is already balding.

– Michael describes the adrenalin rush and says it will help him tell his son and daughter to live life forever. I guess his kids are Methusaleh.

germany michael jet
He also said to live life with an extra pair of pants.

– I wish Charla had to do this task with Michael.

– Michael is amazed that Jet’s hat is still on.

JET: Real cowboys keep their hat on.

germany michael jet 2

Cowboys don’t believe in gravity.

– They receive their clue and are told to not open it until they re-join their partner.

– Joe & Heidi are second to emerge from the train station. He admits that his left knee is starting to hurt.

marshall walk

He knows all about that. Things could escalate quickly.

Because Allie does not have a sore knee, she does not receive any airtime.

– Jet & Michael board a train to return to their teams. Dan & Brandy show up to the bungee jump seconds later as they watch Joe and Allie get into the air. Allie screams a lot when they jump.

germany joe allie

Her hair turns into a freakin’ tornado. Where is Klaus, anyway? Does he not get to bungee?

– Brandy freaks out as she sees it is upside-down.

germany brandy snow

Geez, she is threatening to die after quitting the race earlier? All because of missing a train and having to do a bungee jump?
santiago brent caite 6

“Where is BRANDY’s tiara?”

– Joe thinks he should be okay physically after that jump. Jet & Michael return to the Intersection sign. Jet reads that they must find the Statue of Kaiser Wilhelm. Also, the shortest Intersection ever is complete.

– Louie & Michael enter a Mercedes taxi driven by a woman named Edga.

germany edga

A hipster version of the name Edgar. Even she has a look that indicates she could beat Michael & Louie in each of the past three rounds.

– Jet & Cord board another metropolitan train. It is shown to be six degrees Celsius. Brandy complains her legs are shaking but does the ump anyway once called. Dan comforts Brandy as she is crying and whimpering. They are spinning and spinning rapidly which makes the moment hilarious. She describes Dan as chivalrous.

germany brandy snow 2

Instant replay before their 1440 mid-air spins.

– Michael & Louie are first to the Detour.

Soccer or Sauerkraut.

germany detour

Sauerkraut: A meal so unsettling that two people are required to split it along with a violinist and guitarist to comfort you through the awful experience.

PHIL: In a city where food and sports are on everyone’s minds, teams must choose between one of Germany’s two greatest traditions.

A city where food and sports are on everyone’s minds? Pardon me, but isn’t that EVERY city that ever existed on planet Earth?

– You know that soccer task in TAR 24 where everyone automatically scored within the first ten shots against a highly competitive goalie? Well, let’s just say this soccer task is a bit more difficult.

germany soccer

This is exactly how every “shoot a soccer ball on the net” in TAR should be. Zero human element. Even TAR 3 had an easy task where the teams played the role of goalie, and some were awarded a really easy shot to block by one of the amateur players.

Kudos to TAR 16 for designing a proper soccer task. It is time for teams to. . .
super smash bros break the targets

Break the Targets!

– In Sauerkraut, teams head to a restaurant and take a seat at the table. As a band plays the Sauerkraut Polka (nothing like a Weird Al polka), teams must dig into a plate full of sauerkraut and polish it off before the song ends. If they do, they will receive their next clue. If not, their plate will be replenished and take it once again from the top.

Teams must be starving. I bet a team like Sally & Tyson would intentionally fail the first time just to squeeze in additional calories for the day.

– Jet & Cord are still on the Metropolitan train. They realize they are taking the long way to the route marker.

– Joe & Heidi’s cab will follow Steve & Allie’s cab. We see Caite and Jordan doing the jump. Caite said it was a ton of fun.

– Michael & Louie are at the sauerkraut task. They see the plate and Michael thinks it will be easy.

MICHAEL: I have eaten things as big as Jet & Cord.

What. . .an odd analogy.

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If last round was designed for Jet & Cord, this was designed for Michael & Louie. If they cannot eat the plate with those big mouths, nobody stands a chance.

– The polka begins to play.

germany polka

It would be great if they ended the song abruptly after thirty seconds. I wish we knew what the length of the song is supposed to precisely be.

– Louie comments that after two bites he notices Michael has already consumed half of the plate. Michael claims he never looked up from the plate. It would be a task my dad and I could master.

– Michael reads that they must now head to Haifisch Bar. The Shark Bar (there are sharks in Germany?). And share a glass boot full of beer.

germany beer

Are you serious? A glass boot? Das boot?

das boot

DAS BOOOOOOT!

I like how there is always a beer task whenever they go to Germany.

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I bet Gus would love this Das Boot task.

– Michael says it was the best sauerkraut of his life. They re-enter the taxi. No complaints of their stomach. Carol & Brandy and Dan & Jordan have their intersection come to an end.

– Jet & Cord receive directions from a taxi driver once they are back on the streets. They run to the statue. Steve & Allie and Joe & Heidi reach the clue box simultaneously with them.

– Steve & Allie and Joe & Heidi both choose Soccer. Because they showed up in a taxi, they were able to hop back in the taxi. Since Jet & Cord arrived on foot, they need to run around the streets to find a taxi to take them to one of the Detour tasks.

Welcome to The Amazing Race, Jet & Cord.

– Jordan & Jeff and Brent & Caite are reunited. A local shows them to the train. Wow, these two teams have really fallen since the season premiere. Neither team has done well for two rounds now.

– Michael & Louie have a shockingly big lead as they enter the shark bar.
germany beer 2

I like how the sign states “Welcome to Hamburg” as if it is the starting point to visit in the city. The city officials presume your first stop is to drink a large glass boot of beer before you do anything else in town. Even before you eat a hamburger or sauerkraut.

What the hell is sauerkraut anyway? All we know is that it looks like a psuedo-noodle dish.

– Alright, Michael & Louie receive their size ten pitcher of beer. I am curious whose boot the beer is modeled after in the bar.

new zealand al

The boot is closer to his size rather than the bounded foot of a Chinese woman.

– Michael says he does not drink beer, and has a taste.

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cleveland brown

Michael quotes the great Cleveland Brown.

germany louie stravato

Meanwhile Louie is drinking it as if it is a bottle of milk while napping in a crib.

– Steve & Allie find the locker rooms containing their respective outfits. Joe & Heidi join them. Allie delivers a weak kick. Steve is missing. It is a far distance from the net. During FIFA World Cup they seem to be much closer.

– Allie breaks the first target. Joe says his knee is killing him, and cannot get it up.
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WHY NOT SWITCH FEET YOU IDIOT?!

– JOE: I can’t get it up. My knee is killing me.

Wow, this complaint is getting repetitive.

germany joe wang

Yes, someone named Wang is having a tough time “getting it up”.

Why stripping his clothes off is helping him is as much of a mystery to me as it is to you.

– Jet & Cord are just getting into a taxi now. They are losing a ton of time. Jordan & Jeff are fifth to the Detour. Brent & Caite are sixth. That’s right, they passed two teams.

germany detour 2

I really hope the additional route info specifies the size of the bowl, the length of the song, or how far the targets are away. Otherwise this is too vague even for teams to decide which one is easier.

– Brent & Caite choose Soccer. They decide to walk on foot.

JORDAN: What’s a bowl of sauerkraut?
JEFF: It’s like pickled. . .yeah.

Wow. That was close. I would hate for Jeff & Jordan to know something that I do not know.

– Jeff chooses sauerkraut on their behalf.

germany jeff jordan

Jordan is not looking forward to it.

– I am amazed teams did not all take taxis to these route markers. It is a mix of walking, metropolitan metros, and taxi rides.

– We cut back to the soccer task.

germany altona

What is Altona 93?

– We see Steve hit more targets, but of course we hear Joe & Heidi more than Steve & Allie while this occurs. Steve hit the fourth and final targets. Joe commends him a job well done. We only hear Steve & Allie when they read the clue, and proceed to disappear.

Wow. First team to complete the soccer option and could not be quieter. No confessional.

– Steve tells them to never give up. Joe announces they are switching to sauerkraut.

STEVE: No way you’re switching!
JOE: We haven’t hit one yet. Go get first place, dude.

I love how Steve is the cliche baseball coach. “Winners never quit and quitters never win” style of response to Joe’s switch. Classic.

germany joe wang 2

As punishment they must pass by Steve & Allie’s completed net. I will laugh so hard if Joe’s knee bothers him during the sauerkraut task.

– Jet & Cord arrive at the soccer pitch. They took such a long time to get there that Steve & Allie see them while leaving.
germany steve allie

The Cowboys are coming! The Germans are coming!

– Jet & Cord emerge on the field and suddenly the City Slickers theme plays yet freakin’ again. They look ridiculous playing soccer with their cowboy hats on.

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“Get it? They are such cowboys that they do not even take off their hats when playing soccer! What craaaaazy people!”

– Jet hits the first target. Cord gets the second. They run to retrieve their balls.

germany magnum

Free advertising for ice cream! Sneaky little sponsours.

– Jordan & Jeff are told by their driver that the restaurant is just a little further. Jeff hopes they are going the right way.

– Back at the bar, Louie is -still- drinking. Lots of burping.

LOUIE: I used to chug beers back in the day.

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Used to? Is Louie insinuating that he does this in a time other than the present?

– How is the rest of the Shark Bar doing?

germany shark bar

Man down.

– Michael takes care of the sauerkraut and Louie takes the beer. Oh, Louie repeats what I just said like two seconds later. No wonder Michael is the thinner one.

– They receive their next clue. Teams must head to Beatles-Platz. The monument honouring The Beatles who rose their rise to fame playing American pop songs in Hamburg. From there they must run through the famed Red Light District to a bar called the Indra. It was the first place The Beatles played in the city of Hamburg. This is the location of their next pit stop.

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The last team to arrive will hear “I Need Somebody (Help!)” when they enter.
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And didn’t we just have a Beatles tribute recently? There was one Beatles reference in TAR 7. That was it for the first 14 and 11/12 seasons until the finale of TAR 15.
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I know. One Beatles reference in the first 160 episodes or so of TAR US, but here we are with two major Beatles tributes in the span of five episodes.

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I wonder if anybody is able to sneak in there and sleep for the night.

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The Beatles have a more wiry frame than Courtney Yates!

– Michael & Louie re-enter their taxi. Carol & Brandy and Dan & Jordan make it to the route marker together. They both choose the sauerkraut task as they enter taxis. Their lost time is never explained.

– For some reason Brent & Caite are continuing to run the streets of Hamburg.
germany klopstockplatz

And are lost somewhere between Klop, Stock, and Three Smoking Platz Avenue.

Caite, who already resembles Britney Spears, decides to say the word “baby” more than her clone.

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I’d hate to be the editor who had to count the correct number of times “baby” was uttered.

hurricane chris

Not even Hurricane Chris says “baby” that much.

One time in French 12 the teacher was reading out the answers for a quiz. In French, the letters ‘A’ and ‘B’ are pronounced exactly as Hurricane Chris. My friends Braiden and Scott tried to pick a sequence of answers for her to read out where they knew the answer was ‘A’ then ‘B’ then ‘B’.

Needless to say the teacher was confused and could not read it out in the rhythm that my friends Braiden and Scott wished for it to be read.

– Caite is sick of getting lost. She makes it sound like she was never lost on her own just a few minutes ago.

– Jeff asks if they are approaching a hamburger place. The driver says they are in Hamburg. Jeff is convinced they are heading into the wrong direction.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Jeff & Jordan were recognized in Argentina by locals in an unaired segment. Clearly this is not the case in Germany.

– JEFF: Either we’re eating hamburgers or somebody is going to eat us.

. . .Hamburg is home to cannibals?

– Jeff points out the driver’s navigator and how it is a red line that never ends. He tells the driver multiple times that there is no way this could be right.

– Commercial break. We hear the same things being repeated.

germany dave thomas

Since when did Dave Thomas become a German taxi driver?

– The driver catches on that he put in the wrong address into the navigator. He was strictly relying on the navigator all along. He changes the address and now they will be heading to the correct location.

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Oddly enough, Jordan would have made the same error as the driver if she used the navigator.

– JORDAN: We should’ve done the soccer thing.
JEFF: What do you mean? He would’ve punched it into his GPS and we would have been in Switzerland.

You do know the guy is two feet away from you, right?

– Michael & Louie are in a car with Edga. They ask her about the place they are visiting.

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I like how talking about sex shops is what breaks up Edga’s serious demeanour.

MICHAEL & LOUIE: SEX SHOPS?! Ohhohohohoho.

I think their wives are going to receive a souvenir when they get home.

– Michael & Louie find the Indra no problem.

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A Casual Keoghan has his arms folded and sporting a hoodie here in the Red Light District.

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Not actual Beatles.

germany pit stop greeter

The pit stop greeter is sporting a haircut that is identical to most five year olds.

– LOUIE: I am no longer a sheep, brotha. I am a wolf. A-wooooo. Let’s do it me.

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wolf

wolf o donnell

shakira she wolf

rampage howl

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Uhhhhh, what the hell is that? This is the last time we hang out here in the Red Light District.

– FIRST PLACE: LOUIE & MICHAEL

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Their average of 8.66, on track to be the worst ever of a team to finish eighth or higher in a season, has now improved to 6.75. Who’s smilin now?!

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They are so excited and happy that a whole plate of sauerkraut could fit in their mouths right now and they wouldn’t even notice.

germany phil keoghan 3

Phil is just happy he doesn’t have to give prizes to people who only talk about a light that is flashing yellow or constantly referring to Power of Vetoes and Head of Households.

PHIL: You’re looking more like a wolf each day.

I don’t know if that was sarcasm or not.

– They have received a Discover gift card for five thousand. They can use that to buy -whatever- they want.

germany discover

Like five thousand dollars worth of steak, potatoes, wine, and asparagus.

– Louie says they ran like the wind and are no longer making bad decisions. Mike agrees.

– Steve & Allie get to the bar. Allie says her father has kept talking about drinking beer the whole race and that’s all he wants. Now, the task says for teams to share the beer.

STEVE (lifts boot): A toast!

germany steve smith

“Do they offer free refills here?”

germany steve smith 2

We have learned three things about Steve in the span of four rounds.

1) He is a fielding coach
2) He is uncoordinated when it comes to wet grasslands
3) He has a drinking problem, and will be reporting to AA faster than you can say “Dennis Rodman”.

– Jet & Cord are at the soccer pitch. Three targets have been hit. Now four. And a fifth. All in a row. More country music plays. It is a hodown.

CORD: Not bad for two cowboys from Oklahoma. It was my first time on a soccer field.
JET: It was my first time on a soccer field as well.
CORD: Another thing to check off. Check.
*Ding!*

germany jet cord mccoy 3

They even get their own goddamn cheesy sound effects now. God, they have a big enough music library after four rounds that could fill up an entire season’s soundtrack.

germany steve smith 3

Wow. Has Steve put down the glass once yet?
germany allie smith

Oh. He was kind enough to let Allie drink the final 1.2 mL of the two litre boot.

germany bartender
She may have stolen from Mickey & Pete’s stash prior to her shift, but she is conscious enough to give Steve & Allie their next clue.

– How does Steve feel after drinking approximately 1.98 Litres of beer?

germany steve smith 4

He now understands why the clue said to share.

germany sally tyson

Imagine if Tyson had to do this task? He would have to urinate seven times between here and the pit stop.

– Brent & Caite eventually enter a taxi. Wow. About time. Joe & Heidi sit down for a plate of food. Joe asks how long the song is but does not receive a response. Heidi says her and Joe make their own sauerkraut and sausages.

germany joe wang 3

Although something tells me they sit down for a longer meal to consume a handful of sauerkraut.

– Because of the song’s unknown length, they opt to practically inhale the sauerkraut.  This does not strain their knees, and thus the food is complete.

germany joe heidi

Perhaps Joe & Heidi will form their own band and play a song whenever their kids are picky at the dinner table.

“You better finish your f—ing food before the end of my accordion solo Joe Junior, or I’ll bash you over the head with it after I’m done!”

– JEFF: We’re in the middle of nowhere. There’s nothing here. We’re way out of our way.

Wah wah wah.

– Carol & Brandy are next to the sauerkraut. Brandy also asks how long the song will play. The unknown length is really psychologically affecting teams. Carol refuses to speed up her usual pace. She is eating like a Parisian with a latte and a muffin at a cafe.

– Dan & Jordan show up to the soccer task. Apparently Dan was hoping for a soccer challenge before the season would begin. Dan hits a target on the second shot. Jordan strikes a soccer ball about as well as I do.

– We cut back to the sauerkraut task where Brandy is repeatedly licking the plate clean.

germany carol brandy 5

It would be funny if the judge trolls them by pointing out a tiny crumb on the edge of the plate that Brandy forgot to lick.

germany man

Congratulations, you have ensured every waiter working in this restaurant never eats sauerkraut again.

– Carol & Brandy are done. Brandy thanks the Lord for sauerkraut. Away in a taxi they go. Supposedly sauerkraut was Carol’s idea even though she ate little of it.

– Dan & Jordan complete the soccer task. The elder brother must have hit all five targets by himself. They re-enter a taxi. Joe & Heidi see the Cowboys in a taxi slightly ahead. Jet & Cord are pissed to see Joe & Heidi’s cab pull out in front of them.

JET: Oh my gravy, he did not just let that happen.

OH MY GRAVY COUNT: 6

– How did Joe & Heidi’s driver pull that maneuver?

germany man 2

Because he is a single 25-year-old man with nothing to lose.

– Both teams enter the bar and do not see a clue. Jet sees the sign.

JET: I’ve never drank a beer my whole life.

germany jet cord mccoy 4

I did not have my first beer until I was 22. Have you guys done anything in your life besides riding bulls and being mildly homophobic?

I wonder how much faster they would drink it if it was a boot of gravy.

– Steve & Allie enter the bar.

SECOND PLACE: STEVE & ALLIE

Once again. Time for a father-daughter team to win this thing.

– Joe is getting queasy.

germany joe wang 4

How does the boot’s knee feel? Is it affecting Joe?

HEIDI: I’m actually going to burp.

Yes. Heidi says this in a way that makes you think she burps less frequently than when Jerry Seinfeld vomits.

Her last burp was in 1988 after the Space Shuttle Challenger crash.

– Jet burps and Joe vomits. Joe & Heidi finish, but Joe is burping so much when reading the clue that he hands it over to Heidi to read it.

germany joe heidi wang 2

Producers require for you to read each clue aloud, but the camera operator will make an exception very quickly.

germany joe heidi wang 3

Relay, relay, relay!

– Jet & Cord are barely halfway done. Beer may be an acquired taste, but Jet & Cord may get over that in one night as they share two litres of it.

– Jeff & Jordan are seventh to the Detour as they reach the sauerkraut house. Jordan prepares by plugging her nose. Jeff asks for the song to be an hour long. Somehow they are ahead of Brent & Caite.

germany polka 2

“You want us to play an hour long polka? Cue TRAPPED IN THE CLOSCHLAFFHAUSEN!”

– Jordan & Jeff are ready to eat. Ms. Lloyd sadly runs into two obstacles.

germany jeff jordan 3

The taste of the sauerkraut.

germany jordan lloyd

The sound of the music.

maui luke adams 5

And no. I’m not making that joke.

– Brent & Caite make it to the soccer pitch. Caite is excited because she has played soccer since she was five. I have played soccer since I was five too, but have only played it a handful of times since then. Caite’s first shot?

germany soccer 2

germany caite upton 4

Nailed it.

– The song ends for Jeff & Jordan. Did they finish?

germany jeff jordan 4

Barely finished half. They switch tasks after going through all of that trouble of finding the place. Jeff says the task was stupid. Finally something that Jordan & Jeff have in common with something that occurs on this leg.

JORDAN: That was the nastiest stuff ever.

allan wu fear factor 9

allan wu fear factor 11

Allan Wu may disagree.

– JORDAN: Hopefully someone got a penalty.
JEFF: Hopefully someone fell off a bridge with cement shoes.

germany jeff jordan 5

Is he being serious?

– Speaking of penalties, Caite is killing it at penalty kicks.

germany caite upton 5

Well, until this.

– She says that a quick pain went through her thighs. Caite is upset she cannot even kick an easy one.

BRENT: They’re probably really tight from sitting on a plane for fifteen hours, and then we had to run across town.

germany brent horne

Brent is too afraid to laugh at Caite’s hissyfit.

– Commercial. We resume. Feeling any better?

germany brent caite 3

lol no.

bobby the mole 5

She is like Bobby from The Mole. A guy who was a semi-pro soccer player but once on reality TV he struggles to move.

liz the mole 5

Bobby is a sore subject for everyone who had to play with him that season.

– Caite keeps missing kicks and repeats that she would nail the targets if she was feeling better. From hospitalization to mega cramps.
survivor africa lindsey richter

No wonder why Caite has cramps!

– Carol & Brandy see Jet & Cord in the bar. I want to know if they view the Cowboys as their equals in this race. Jet & Cord are not even drinking as they ask Carol & Brandy if they completed the sauerkraut task.

– Joe & Heidi’s taxi drops them off in the Red Light District.

THIRD PLACE: JOE & HEIDI

germany joe heidi wang 4

Where Heidi found that scarf for the pit stop is unknown.

P.S. Joe’s knee hurts.

– The Cowboys are down to the heel. Jet calls out the local who is laughing at their inability to drink.

germany cowboys

germany local

He finds sober cowboys amusing.

– Carol & Brandy handle their liquor better than Jet & Cord. Brandy bids them farewell in a condescending manner as if it was unfair.

JET: Never never in my life do I want another beer.

germany brandy snow 3

Brandy may have a contrasting opinion.

– Carol & Brandy must have made up time. Carol burps loudly. We cut back to the soccer pitch. She coaches Brent on how to kick, but he still sucks. Caite nails down the final target. Brent is proud of Caite’s strength.

CAITE: He had to help me out a little bit, but I still shot three of the penalties. Brent made two.

Heh, I like how she has to bring it up to reinforce that her on her worst day is still better than Brent and Skinny Ryan on their best day.

– Brent & Caite re-enter their taxi. Jordan is queasy as him and Dan enter the Shark Bar. Jordan sees the boot and declares they shall be s— faced.

– Jet & Cord are taken through the Red Light District. Their reaction?

germany taxi driver

And this taxi driver could not be happier to be in the Red Light District. He would probably commit suicide in Oklahoma.

– Jet & Cord slowly walk along the streets of the district. They enter the club.

germany beatles 5

And nothing says illicit, promiscuous, underground, and reckless than The Beatles!

FOURTH PLACE: JET & CORD

They are indifferent to their finish. No Discover cards for them.

– Jeff & Jordan enter the soccer stadium. TAR 4’s Beethoven soundtrack plays. Jordan is the worst soccer player ever. Jeff connects with a target.

JORDAN: What? We have to kick it -through-?

Yes, Jordan. That is indeed the whole point of the Detour task.

germany jeff jordan 6

Jordan has not been playing soccer since she was five.

– Heh, Jordan rotates the boot at the end just like in Beerfest. Awesome.

germany dan jordan pious

Dan is only playing soccer and drinking beer because his brother wanted him to do it.

– Carol spots the Indra club.

FIFTH PLACE: CAROL & BRANDY

Right behind the Cowboys, but ahead of Caite Upton. What weird rivals to have.

– Brent & Caite are at the Shark Bar. America’s legal drinking age is 21. Caite is 20.

germany caite upton 6

But she goes for it like every high school bush party.

germany caite upton 7

But I think Caite is more into coolers.

CAITE: I hate beer. It grosses me out whenever he drinks it, and then I kiss him it’s like “glah!”

germany caite upton 8
miley cyrus

We’ve got a Miley in the making!

– Jordan is amazed by the Red Light District as if he is seeing downtown New York City for the first time. Jordan dances to The Beatles music once he enters the Indra.

germany dan jordan pious 2

Dan and Phil patiently wait for Jordan to stop dancing.

SIXTH PLACE: DAN & JORDAN

Both are surprised that they finished this high. My assumption is they thought they were seventh.

– Jordan’s shot bounces off the post and rolls all the way into the camera.

germany soccer 3

The soccer camera has proven to be a good goalie.

– They break all five targets. Jordan broke the final one. Off to the Shark Bar they go. I am sure it is verified in the GPS.

– Brent is preparing to vomit. He goes into the restroom to throw up. It is a steady stream of liquid vomit. The best part is that their taxi driver has a clear view of it. I can assure you the sound of the vomit on audio is equally pleasant.

germany brent horne 2

Hey, it wouldn’t be a Supa Coo Wacky blog without me capturing every vomiting incident in TAR history!

germany driver

Your fare is doubling if you pull that s— in my car.

– Jeff states the obvious that they should have gone straight for soccer. He beats himself for it, but promises to beat everyone if given a second chance. More sauerkraut is burped.
germany brent horne 3

Luckily for Brent it is more drool than vomit at this point. The driver continues to watch.

germany crowd

The Germans are mocking him.

– Brent begs Caite to chug it like it is the last ounce of the drink from that fountain in the cave from the Half-Blood Prince. She turns down the offer, and Brent finishes it without vomiting. Caite is drinking a Coca Cola in the meantime.

CAITE: We’re in last anyway.
BRENT: We have no shot of getting there before one other team.

germany jeff jordan 7

Brent & Caite are giving Jeff & Jordan the Jody & Shannon treatment by not recognizing their ability to be counted as a real team.

– JEFF: Drink a beer? Hell yeah!

You find sauerkraut disgusting, but you love beer? Talk about a double standard.

– Jeff proclaims himself to be a champion. Jordan decodes Jeff’s love of beer by stating this task was good for them because Jeff loves beer. The entire crowd cheers on Jeff’s efforts. Jordan prays they are not the last team.

– Brent & Caite’s taxi driver calls up directions on foot once in Red Light District on their cell phone. Jeff & Jordan are in the Red Light District too. Caite refuses to walk fast.

JORDAN: C’mon. Let’s ask older people.

My sister loves The Beatles and she is 34. She will not be happy to hear Jordan assume that older people are the only ones knowledgeable of The Beatles.

– Caite & Brent do a slow and steady walk.

JORDAN: Jeff! Let’s ask these old guys!
JEFF: They’re dirty. It’s a strip joint.

germany jeff jordan 8

Around the Red Light District with Jeff & Jordan.

What’s wrong with the crowd who see Exotic Show featuring Lady Lyn?

– Jeff is annoyed that every building is a strip joint. They keep walking.

– Brent & Caite find the club. Onto the mat they slowly walk onto.

PHIL: Expecting bad news?
CAITE: Yes. Very bad news.
PHIL: You’re actually team number seven.

SEVENTH PLACE: BRENT & CAITE

BRENT & CAITE: Are you serious?
PHIL: I am very serious.
CAITE: I’m like speechless.

Caite is not capable o being speechless.

germany brent caite 4
As for Brent. . .well, I don’t know what’s going on with Brent.

– Caite says it is third time the charm with finishing seventh on three consecutive legs.

– The soundtrack drops. The Beatles have stopped playing.

LAST PLACE: JEFF & JORDAN

Jeff tells the greeter that he says Hamburg is beautiful, pleasant, and likes it.

The exact opposite of everything regarding this round minus the beer.

PHIL: This race wasn’t easy for you, was it?

germany phil keoghan 4
Is Phil hinting that he believes Jeff & Jordan were at a disadvantage because they are both mentally handicapped?

And Jeff plays into his hand.

JEFF: I know we could have done better, but it’s gonna haunt for me a little bit. I’m a little sick. I don’t know if it’s the sauerkraut or coming in last.

PHIL: Four legs.

JEFF: Four legs and a boot of beer.

Couldn’t you just say they are eliminated by this point? Get on with it!

germany phil keoghan 5

Hold on a sec, guys. I’m getting a phone call.

allison grodner

“Hey, Phil? I don’t know what crazy laws and regulations you guys have that prevent you from interfering the game at will, but I am officially using the Power of Veto on all state governing bodies. Also, I will hunt you down if you eliminate Jeff & Jordan this early. K thx bai.”

– Suddenly, Phil is pleased to tell them this is the first non-elimination with exactly eight teams remaining for the first time since TAR 6.

germany jeff jordan 9

Jeff is relieved and loves being the underdog. Jordan is confused what non-elimination means.

– Jeff says being down and out is when one’s true personality comes out. Whatever that means.

Next Time on TAR: There was no such preview, but teams head to France. I have a feeling they will not be visiting Place Du Canada.

CONFESSIONAL COUNT

BRENT.CAITE 2.6
CAROL.BRANDY 1.5
JET.CORD 4.2
JOE.HEIDI  4.2
DAN.JORDAN 4.3
JEFF.JORDAN 4.5
MICHAEL.LOUIE 7.6
STEVE.ALLIE 0.3

Number of Episodes Where a Team is Specifically Mentioned in the Next Time On. . . Segment

CAROL & BRANDY: 2
JET & CORD: 2
DAN & JORDAN: 1

Rank the Legs

1) San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina -> Hamburg, Germany

Although it was edited out, the eight remaining teams were split amongst three different flights to Hamburg. Once they landed, they were given further choice by choosing between taxis, metro trains, and walking on foot to each route marker.

Freedom of choice in transportation is what all viewers miss in the TAR universe. Nobody wants to see a linear leg.

The teams were evenly divided between doing the Soccer and Sauerkraut Detour options. It is refreshing to see after an era of everybody completing the same dang option.

I also liked that the pit stop was in the Red Light District. Not every monument in existence is on the perimeter of the city in some fairy tale like landscape. They can be bars or clubs in questionable areas.

However, this round has some faults. The one-time return of the Intersection in the US franchise appeared pointless at best. Watching only one team check out of the pit stop, who also happen to be the stars of the season, really keeps many of the other teams hidden from the viewer.

Watching teams physically drained such as Joe’s knee injury and Caite’s hamstrings prove that the TAR experience is legitimate.

Watching Das Boot from Beerfest directly inspire a task was hilarious. I also appreciated a team being at the bottom of the pack in Nowheresville climbing to a first place finish was a breath of fresh air. Regardless of it being Michael & Louie, seeing a change of pace of “One Team Dominates All” since TAR 13 was good to see.

Yes, there is controversy surrounding the round finishing in the first Round of 8 non-elimination since TAR 6, and the fact it happened to save one of three teams production favoured going into the season.

This is by far the best leg design after four rounds. That is rare for a non-elimination round to beat out the first three elimination rounds.

Lastly, Vomiting Brent and Alcoholic Steve.

2) Valparaiso, Chile -> Puerto Varas, Chile

The “most gruelling season ever” takes a huge step down in difficulty for this round.

Perhaps the biggest obstacle was for the racers to see Jeff & Jordan every twenty seconds. We did not see any of the other nine teams check out of the pit stop. The only drama with them was missing both buses in Temuco, but still being in the middle of the pack for the whole round.

The other obstacle was hearing the City Slickers theme repeatedly as Jet & Cord utter the phrase “oh my gravy” four times. Lone Rangers was uttered three times. References to their hat protectors was out of hand, too. Their sneaky little tactic to be the first bus into town  is when they were the most popular team in TAR at the time.

The initial route marker of making teams two or more buses along with taking a car and a boat was one of the best in TAR history.

However, the tasks and driving to subsequent route markers were very quick. Jump off a pier or put a blanket on a llama? Go around a barn collecting eggs, flour, and milk a cow? Then drive straight for twenty minutes to the pit stop? That is really easy stuff.

I could watch teams get kicked in the body by llamas and cows on repeat. That was the only upside to it.

In short, the five different options teams took to get to the first route markers was great. After that it was ultra easy and simplified. A bit of a letdown, really.

Screw you Jeff Schroeder for helping Michael & Louie to get out of last place to beat Jody & Shannon. If only Jody & Shannon knew to buy tickets for a connecting bus as well.

3) Puerto Varas, Chile -> San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina

Teams are provided with bus tickets at the start of the leg? Wow. That takes a huge part of the adventure away from the show.

Once in Argentina, Jet & Cord were treated to an episode all to themselves because the entire round was a freakin’ cowboy theme. Not since Family Edition have we seen such an extreme cowboy theme at play.

The first task was one hundred percent luck as teams sat in a chair waiting for their clue. All we saw was the dealer giving cards to a team and cards to a GNOME in a poker game. If a team beat the gnome, they received their clue. Some teams were unaware when their hand was better.

Once they had the clue, teams walked one hundred feet to the Roadblock task. They appeared to take anywhere between one minute to twenty minutes at the task.

When that was done they drove a short distance to a set of cliffs where the Detour awaited. This was the only challenging task of the round (unless you were Shawne). They had to choose between counting out steps on a coordinate, dig up a bag, and bring it to the train station or taking swings at a ball and getting it past a certain distance within nine shots.

The number of teams switching from the bag bandit task to the polo task must have been a TAR record for a Detour. In fact, Monique & Shawne switched from the polo task to the bag bandit task. Only Jeff & Jordan and Steve & Allie did not switch out of all nine teams.

Steve rolling in mud, Big Joe Wang falling off a fake horse, Monique exhausted from doing nothing, and Michael & Louie completing the Detour for another team were all hilarious moments.

Also, Michael & Louie have an average of 8.67 after three rounds. Only 7.67 points off the pace for being the best of all time.

And did anyone think it was a bit unfair that Brent & Caite were treated and given care for over three hours as they had plenty of time to catch a bus? Sure, Brent was terrible at directions and only a lasso saved him as Caite demonstrated her stick shift skills, but you can’t help but wonder what Monique & Shawne could have done with a bit of treatment.

Do you remember where you were when Monique & Shawne were eliminated? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

4) Los Angeles, California, USA -> Valparaiso, Chile

Compared to TAR 15’s premiere, this one is ten times better.

But compared to virtually any other premiere, this one is probably sub-par. One hour premieres with eleven teams are truly rushed.

Phil starts out the season with the dreaded “toughest season ever” tagline that we know all too well from TAR Asia 3. However, TAR Asia 3 nearly lived up to that tagline. TAR 16’s premiere? Not so much.

First off, teams were brought in on the same bus. Next? They had to get to LAX using public transit. Therefore, this was the cheapest ride to the airport in TAR history, and obviously meant that several teams would get to the airport simultaneously.

Another pointless twist was that only three teams would be on the first flight, and eight teams on the second flight. That makes zero sense because you are at much more of a disadvantage if eight teams are on the first flight, and only three teams on the second flight. If the first flight suffers any sort of delay, they will be at the biggest disadvantage of all.

And guess what? The first flight was delayed, and all eleven teams were forced to be on the second flight! This is the first time in TAR history that all teams left the United States on the same flight. I can’t get over that.

Thankfully the rest of the stupidity lies with the contestants. Jet & Cord exchanging money for a currency that has nothing to do with Chile, Adrian doing the Roadblock instead of Dana, Brent & Caite refusing to read, Jordan Lloyd beating everyone, Steve & Allie painting the inside of a stranger’s house, and Michael & Louie humiliating themselves.

There was an unaired route marker prior to arriving in Valparaiso. I guess a neat castle was too much for 42 minutes. Instead we needed to listen to Jeff Schroeder’s commentary and laugh at Adrian in the process.

Dana & Adrian were heavy favourites entering the season because not only were they superfans, but viewers thought they would be like Chip & Kim or Uchenna & Joyce. I know. That’s a disturbing way of thinking.

They led most of the way until Adrian decided to do the Roadblock. The first hurdle of the season and they were nowhere close to achieving it. I personally think Dana & Adrian were doomed to go early despite this blunder. Adrian and Dana both sounded fatigued even before the Roadblock. I think him or Dana would have experienced a serious injury within the first couple of legs. They would not have held up physically for twelve legs.

So far “toughest race ever” is proving to be “least expensive race ever” after the premiere.

***

By the way, for the past year I have been a co-host for an Amazing Race recap podcast known as the You Are Team No. ? Podcast. If you want to see my style of commentary but on a season airing after the year of 2010, this would be the perfect place for you.

For some reason I have neglected linking to that podcast in my blog. We have done weekly recaps for TAR 24, TAR Australia 3, and TAR Canada 2.

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