“Koala Lumpurs, and Pole Positions”
MALAYSIA – SRI LANKA – PHILIPPINES – NEW ZEALAND – AUSTRALIA – INDONESIA – SOUTH KOREA – SINGAPORE
Previously on TAR Asia: Six teams set off from Coronet Peak in the snowy mountains of New Zealand where things immediately went downhill. In the battle of the cunning, Michelle & Claire were outfoxed by a flock of sheep.
Tearful messages were sent home to loved ones.
Teams flew to Sydney, Australia. While most teams left the trapeze triumphant, Hussein decided to quit the challenge and their team took the four hour penalty.
As Jess & Lani raced to the pit stop, they discovered it was no time for rest.
Six teams remain; Wu will be eliminated next?
TEAMS MENTIONED IN THE PREVIOUSLY ON SEGMENT TALLY
SUNAINA & DIMPLE: 3
Yes, this is the first time the Richards are not specifically mentioned in the ‘Previously on’ segment.
– Intro time.
– Jess & Lani read that they must fly north to Brisbane, Australia. The largest city in Queensland. Both are pissed that they did not win this leg at the moment. They are determined to get to Brisbane by nightfall.
JESS: I wanted to win.
LANI: I wanted ter win toooooooooooooooooooooooooo.
lol, Lani’s voice when she whines never fails to make me laugh.
Ah, good ol’ Qantas. My favourite airline that omits the letter ‘U’.
Have you seen the cars for this leg that teams will be driving in Brisbane?
They are wicked!
Don’t you mean “Wucked”?
– The cars are designed in traditional Aborigine artwork. This is where teams will find their next clue.
And this is not long before we suffer from season after season of Ford’s automatic parking or fuel efficiency related tasks.
Also, what is Wicked teaming up with TAR Asia, anyway? What are they going to do? Perform a musical where one of the numbers is called “The Internet is for TAR?”
– Richards are depressed after finding out they are on team number two.
It is as if finishing in any position worse than first is a big ol failure for them by this point.
ALLAN: Enjoying this leg?
HARDIN: I’ve got a feeling it’s gonna keep going.
See. Richards are much sharper than Jess & Lani.
They get to win a clue that was originally attached to Wu’s face as a mwustache!
– You know what is something awesome about TAR Asia 4 that you do not get to see in any other season?
Keep on Racing legs display departure times! As opposed to newer US seasons which go out of their way to not display departure or announce arrival times.
– Hardin respects any team who can get in front of them, and does not hold a grudge against them.
– Jess & Lani show up to the airport. They find out the last flight of the day leaves at 9:30pm. In other words, nada. Richards find out the first flight tomorrow is at 6:05am.
The words on Jess’ shirt would never ever ever be applied to Hussein.
Actually, just cut out the “110% OR” part of “110% OR NOTHING” and you have Hussein’s motto.
– Michelle & Claire are third to the pit stop at 10:38pm. They depart third at 10:38pm. Heh, I wanted to say that. Michelle wants to keep racing to get it over and done with it.
– Ethan & Khairie are fourth ones there at 11:00pm. Ethan reads they have US $190 dollars for this leg of the race. Khairie is ecstatic to see that much money. Ethan is not tired.
– Sunaina & Dimple show up much later at 11:41pm. Big spread between teams. They receive their clue.
– Ethan & Khairie ask if there are cheap hotels near the airport. You’re not going to expect this answer.
You mean there is a cheap hotel in Sydney that are full of beds in the shape of race cars that five or six year olds typically sleep in? Sweeeeet! Formula 1 beds here they come! Ethan shotguns the red one!
– Sunaina & Dimple search for a hotel. Michelle & Claire enter a room for the night. All of the teams are expected to be there together.
****FOUR HOURS LATER****
Yes. Even them. Sigh.
“Ohhhh, Logan gonna cry cause some old Asian guy is saved by a twist? Want to go pout in a corner? Need a blanket? Logan need his juice box? Wah wah.”
Shut up, Wu.
– Allan informs they are last, but reveals the crucial piece of information.
Look at how pissed Allan is that he had to stay up an additional four hours waiting for Hussein & Natasha. It is 4:10am and will presumably be on the 6:05am flight with the other teams.
Hussein shrieks and covers his eyes in terror. He thought the nightmare known as The Amazing Race Asia 4 was over.
What is he hiding beneath that blue blanket, anyway?
– Natasha hopes the other teams have not left yet. They show up at 5:00am and see all of the teams are there.
This is what I always hated about DLL/KOR rounds in TAR since they debuted in TAR 6. Nobody ever receives a NEL penalty except for a very rare occasion, and teams are typically bunched up immediately making the previous round pointless. Heck, this scenario did not even provide the winning team with a cool prize for the round.
A rare instance of lame design by the TAR Asian production crew.
– Teams fly to Brisbane and land instantly.
HERRERA: We didn’t want to take the Pansy Strategy and follow the Aussie girls around.
“Because you don’t want to see what we do to pansies in the PBA!”
– Jess & Lani find the Wicked car and the clue.
LANI: “Make my day!” Make your way by car to the Southport Indoor Pistol Club in Southport. I have been there!
a) They are going to a specific building that a racer has visited before. This is probably a first since the finale of TAR 1.
b) . . . .
Whoever designed the clue is a big fan of Dirty Harry.
As opposed to Dirty Heath Herring.
– I wonder if Lani has to fill out Form 33 again.
I for one am worried if this is Lani’s favourite place to hang out in Brisbane.
– Each team member must shoot the red target with a .44 Magnum before they can receive their next clue. If you ask me they look like a freakin’ robot face.
Yes. Care to shoot the robot from Mario Paint, kids?
Lani’s roommate in college will hand them their next clue.
– Sunaina & Dimple are second to the clue. Richards are third. Hussein & Natasha are fourth. Ethan & Khairie are fifth. Michelle & Claire are last.
– Is using the .44 Magnum gun optional?
Nope. Mandatory. And here I wanted to use a .43.
By the way, is the additional info specifically telling them which highway to take to Southport? Do you see how the words ‘we suggest’ in there? Suddenly racers are getting recommendations for how to drive themselves by producers? That pretty much goes against the whole idea of self-drive legs if you ask me.
I can see special rules if you are driving across a border, or if you are in a politically unstable region, but this is f–king Australia. What dangers could possibly lurk around Brisbane? A deadly gang of guerrilla kangaroos trying to take back their homeland? It can’t be any Aborigine-based protests like we see in North America because the teams are driving Aborigine inspired cars.
This is mind-boggling. Just let the damn racers do their own damn race.
– Sunaina curses Dimple for not driving on the left side of the road right away. Herrera knows Jess & Lani will be fast because of their transparent confidence.
JESS: We know we’re going to the Southport pistol club! We don’t even have to look at a map!
ETHAN: It’ll be fun to fire a real gun.
Run Khairie. Ethan has never been in such a good mood on the race.
MICHELLE: Southport! Right thurr!
CLAIRE: Right thurr.
MICHELLE: Right thurr, right thurr, right thurr.
Geez, producers go from referencing Dirty Harry films to referencing the two-hit wonder known as Chingy? You know, that rapper from St. Louis who had two hit singles in the early 2000s, and disappeared almost immediately?
I vaguely referenced him during the TAR 16 blog during the Detour where teams had to balance a chingay on their nose, because there was no other opportunity to reference Chingy in this blog.
But here it is. I may as well tell you about Chingy since he has come up for a second time, and this occasion is much more obvious.
Right Thurr is from 2003. Did the single really take seven years to get to Singapore for Michelle and Claire to know about it?
If you can make it through this song here in 2014, I’d be impressed.
Let’s take a quick look at the lyrics that made Chingy famous:
“I like the way you do that right thurr
Swing your hips when you’re walkin, let down your hurr
I like the way you do that right thurr
Lick your lips when you’re talkin, that makes me sturr
I like that
I like that
I like that”
Also he rhymes ‘stacked’ with ‘that’ and ‘back’ on about three or four other occasions throughout the song.
But thankfully, he is not the most unbearable person in this blog because I still have Hussein to deal with this round.
– James Bond music (or is it late season 24 season five music?) as Jess & Lani enter the building.
Lani does her Single Ladies dance when the doors open.
JESS: We’ve both been shooting quite a few times together. We both kinda knew what’s our stance and what to expect in the kickback.
I never thought Jess would go at lengths to discuss shooting without it being preceded by the word ‘skeet’.
Er, nevermind. Thinking of somebody else.
– Jess shoots it on her first try. She is super bummed because she does not get to shoot the gun anymore.
Bummed that you completed a fun task so quickly on TAR that you have a big lead? That’s called #firstplaceproblems my friends.
If that target as a whole was a man, Jess just shot where the left testicle would be. Is anyone else bothered by this?
LANI: Too good, Jess.
JESS: Biggest gun I think we have ever shot.
LANI: I’ve shot machine guns and stuff.
JESS: She wishes.
So size does matter.
– Dimple is overwhelmed. Cars are honking at her. She is confused by roundabouts. She has never seen a roundabout in her life before.
As my folks and I say here on the west coast of Canada, it is a “roundaboot”.
– Natasha is screaming at her dad to go right. She thinks they are far away from the pistol club. Their lack of sleep is affecting them according to Nat.
Yes, some people named Natasha are nicknamed Nat. Usually the nickname is reserved for people named Natalie.
But yet people still use the nickname Nat for Natashas despite being completely wrong and going against all logic.
– Lani nails the target too.
Ow, my right arm.
The shooting range instructor is probably keeping the clue concealed.
No, actually. In a relief to viewers, he does not make Jess & Lani fish the clue for him out of his back pocket. That would have been weird.
– Jess & Lani read the clue.
LANI: You’ll need an eagle eye for this one.
Dirty Harry to Chingy to Michael & Louie of TAR 16 to inevitably grabbing the .44 Magnum and blowing my brains out?
This is the worst! Why do we need to be reminded of F–KING MICHAEL AND LOUIE!!!!
– Teams must drive to Dreamworld Theme Park and ride the highest freefall in the world–The Giant Drop (an appropriate name). Once they’ve risen 128 metres, teams must use a Sony Cybershot camera to capture a photograph of the race flag being waved by a knockoff Chuck-E-Cheese mascot known as the Giant Koala. They will only have a limited time to complete the task before falling to speeds of 135 kilometres per hour. If the image cannot be seen on the Sony Broadband TV, they must repeat the challenge.
He was the extra cut from K’naan’s greatest music video.
As if a task involving letters to home with a camcorder was not enough product placement for Sony.
The ultimate punishment? This is a superfan who applied to be on all four seasons of TAR Asia. She was hired to watch other teams do the tasks that she wished to complete while following the TAR franchise over the past ten years. That’s just cruel.
Not to be confused with the Casa de Charmin in Exile Island after Bob Dawg enjoyed his reward.
– Lani volunteers to drive. Richards enter as Jess & Lani exit. They tease Richards that they are heading to the Gold Coast. Lani is impressed with how quick the Richards were.
– Ethan & Khairie and Dominatrix made up good time as they follow the Richards in there. Everyone is amazed by the kickback.
ETHAN: Years of practice with computer games has proven useful.
Yes, Ethan. Social misfit edit. I know.
If Ethan got all of this practice with guns through computer games, then it is only fair that the targets re-spawn.
– Hardin is next to hit the target.
Everybody loves hitting the shoulders.
– Claire is not ready for the kickback. Michelle aims wildly. Herrera has the best shot with a bullseye. Khairie nicks the top of the target.
– Claire barely hits it. Very close to where Ethan connected too. Michelle lands on the bottom of the target.
– Hardin confirms with Herrera that Sunaina & Dimple and Hussein & Natasha have yet to be seen since landing in Brisbane.
– Sunaina & Dimple park at the Pistol Club as Sunaina yells at Dimple for taking too long to lock the driver’s side door.
I think Hayden from TAR 6 had an easier time operating keys than Dimple.
– Sunaina supposedly gets it on her first shot. Now Dimple gets to take two turns. Three. Four. Now she has it. They open the clue and repeat the silly eagle eye hint.
– Lani pulls the ‘1’ tag at Giant Drop, and proceed to enter the contraption.
But first, Jess & Lani send a message to their friendly competitors: Suck it.
Bad idea, ladies. I saw what happened to Monica’s arm when she raised it while driving in a racecar on the Le Mans speed track.
– Lani spots the koala on the ground. She starts cursing as she struggles to operate the camera. She luckily gets the shot, and hangs onto it during the freefall.
They’re free. . .
Minus the pre-Tony Hawk skateboarding montage, Calgary Flames hats, and that guy chewing bubble gum as if he watched Beyonce Knowles’ Crazy in Love music video one too many times.
Just to add insult to douchery, we’ve got 1980s Baylor Wilson from Survivor San Juan Del Sur.
I personally prefer Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Total Ree. . .Reecallin.
JESS: How many did you take?
LANI: One of my hand and that one.
Heh, at least Lani was honest.
– They are approved and receive their clue. InstaRoadblock.
HINT: Who is the most driven?
Teams must drive themselves to the WRX (who the hell knows what that stands for) Experience Rally Circuit. One team member must complete one lap in under 1 minute and 42 seconds to receive their next clue.
You were right.
– I should note Lani referred to the woman in the green shirt as Judge Judy. I noticed it on a quick re-watch of this scene.
ALLAN: Teams that can keep the pedal to the metal on the slippery course, will slide right into the pole position.
Did Allan really use the term ‘pole position’ on a leg where Jess was in first place of all people? Apparently I am not the only one oversaturating this season with jokes about Jess’ current occupation.
It reminds me a bit of how the map for Yoshi Valley on Mario Kart 64 appears.
– And Jess is indeed volunteering herself to go into pole position. Classic. She warns Lani to not spin out the van en route to the next route marker.
– Hussein & Natasha are last to the shooting range. I really wish Hussein was the target.
– Hussein is shocked by the kickback. Country music plays for some reason. Hussein misses three times. Natasha is next and asks if it is hard. Hussein gives her the usual silent unhelpful treatment. She shoots and the kickback stuns her.
Kickback? More like blowback!
– Things get much worse for Natasha.
Natasha’s home is definitely not on the range as she needs a new pair of pants. I think the camera and sound operator stuck with her are assessing a four hour time penalty just for that.
Now for the next shot and–
Geez! Another pair of pants, Nat? Seriously?
– Ethan & Khairie are at Dreamworld. Richards are strapped into the Giant Drop and go up. No time for selfies, sadly. Herrera sees the flag at the last second. He thinks the mascot is a big mouse too. Heh. Chuck-E-Cheese was his first thought as well.
– Herrera describes Hardin’s voice during the job as a pig squealing and its head exploded. I agree with his description.
Looks like the pig is pulling a Natasha Sutadisastra if you ask me.
– Richards are awarded with their clue. Ethan & Khairie congratulate them. For some reason we get a zoom in of the Roadblock clue.
Just in case you thought Jess & Lani lied about the Roadblock hint.
– Hussein finally gets a shot. Natasha connects with hers too. They receive their clue.
– Ethan & Khairie prepare to strap in.
KHAIRIE: On the way he was like ‘oh my god, a free fall’ and told him ‘you already did the bungee jumping’.
It’s funny how the race can turn into a big blur. Ethan supposedly conquered his fear three days earlier, but forgot about it all.
– Ethan points out the giant koala on top. Khairie takes the picture. They fall. They scream. Ethan squeals. That’s it. They submit the photo, and cannot figure out what the animal is. The clue is awarded regardless.
– Dominatrix parks their Wicked van and arrive on the scene.
Rocky Balboa is a source of inspiration for Aborigine vehicle art. Or maybe that guy is one of Jessica Liese’s sparring partners. Who knows.
Next boxing reference is scheduled to be Ricky I followed by the boxing coach from The Wire.
– Claire is scared but is only thinking of finding the stupid flag. She and Michelle find nothing. The first team to fail at this.
– Sunaina & Dimple ask for directions to Dreamworld. They get good directions we assume.
– Dominatrix go back up for a second time and fail.
CLAIRE: First time I came down shaking. Second time I came down trembling.
So back up they go for a third ride. They are tying the number of free falls taken by the other three teams combined thus far.
Cheer up Claire. You get to bypass the long lines for The Giant Drop. Why, I have never seen such short rides than Transwonderland located in Nigeria. The book I had to read about it in university did not exactly bring in the tourism for it.
– Jess & Lani do not brag about grabbing the ‘1’ tag quite as much as previous times. Turns out Lani is the one doing the Roadblock. So much for my pole position joke.
– Claire sees the flag on the third time. She points it out to Michelle who snaps the picture with less than a second to go. That could have been dangerous.
Forcing people to ride The Giant Drop against their wishes finally ends for this man. He would make everybody that is fearful of heights to do this ten times per day if he was allowed.
– We hear people screaming in the background as Dominatrix reads the clue. Claire refers to the koala as a sneaky little twit.
– Lani completes a lap in 01:44. Two seconds off. She is the Maya of car racing. Except unlike Maya’s Go-Kart, this car is legit.
– Hardin is doing the Roadblock.
JESS: Richard Hardin took off like a grandpa.
HERRERA: If he drives that car anything like the camper van, we are in big trouble.
I live in a retirement resort town. We would all be dead if grandpas drove like race car drivers.
– Lani’s second attempt: 01:40.
Something tells me Grandpa Hardin will not beat that time.
Shooting guns and driving fast cars? Please never change, Lani.
– Herrera is annoyed that Jess & Lani are a step ahead of them as they take off. He also says that Hardin had his brake lights on for most of the lap.
– Jess & Lani read that teams must drive to Kurrawa Beach. There are clues buried within a large marked area.
ALLAN: Another needle in the haystack challenge. This search could see some teams buried under the pressure.
Are you kidding me?
We’re revisiting the task from TAR Asia 1 that was pure luck, and just eliminated a team who refused to do it after digging for hours and hours?
“Another needle in the haystack?” How about “another needle in the f–king face”, Allan.
Hay bales in American TAR; Sandy beaches in Asian TAR. I wish they at least received a hint or a riddle or a compass to use to help locate it.
– Ethan & Khairie are third to pull a tag. Ethan is doing the Roadblock.
HARDIN’s 1st attempt: 02:15
– Commercial break. We resume.
Psssst. Something is wrong with your camera.
– HARDIN’s 2nd attempt: 01:41
ETHAN’s 1st attempt: 01:40
– Ethan is annoyed with the Wicked van because he it is too slow by comparison. Wish he would try driving it like a race car.
– Michelle is fourth to the Roadblock.
Surprise seat adjustment!
– Sunaina is sarcastically encouraged by seeing her and Dimple are fifth to Dreamworld. Hussein & Natasha are at Dreamworld too. Sunaina & Dimple see nothing on their first attempt. Dimple sprains her neck when capturing the photo on the second shot. They succeed.
– Dimple wants to do the Roadblock.
SUNAINA: The clue says ‘who is the most driven’ and she cannot drive.
Well that’s dumb. You know what the hint was.
Those are the exact words Sunaina has written on her hand.
– Michelle spins a bit, and gets to the end of the course.
MICHELLE’S 1st attempt: 01:43
Yep. Missed it by one second.
– Hussein & Natasha are last to Dreamworld. Hussein spots the flag, and take it on the first attempt. Some time has been made up. Natasha decides to do the Roadblock. Probably wise since Hussein quit the last Roadblock, and there are no more NELs to play around with for the rest of the race.
– MICHELLE’s 2nd attempt: 01:39
MICHELLE: Drive yourselves to Koala Beach.
– Jess & Lani are at the beach. Lani complains how small the shovels are.
JESS: May as well be digging with our pinkies.
In TAR Asia 1 teams had to wait FOUR HOURS before being allowed to use shovels.
These TAR Asia 4ans have no idea how good they have it.
Ungratefulness of youth.
– Sunaina & Dimple are fifth to the race track. Dimple is inside.
Moar product placement, moar!
– We get a real cool shot of a ton of mud being kicked into the camera.
“It’s snowing dirt!”
DIMPLE’s 1st attempt: 01:46
Missed it by four seconds. She gives it another go.
DIMPLE’s 2nd attempt: 01:41
– Hussein & Natasha are gearing up as Sunaina & Dimple exit. Natasha wants to make the best of them being in last at the moment.
– Jess wants to tell other teams that there are local animals in the sand which will eat them. Lani demonstrates the different measurements for digging.
One unit of “This Deep”.
Or two units of “This Deep”.
Or three units of “This Deep”.
Or four minutes of Mobb Deep.
JESS: Maybe it got washed away overnight.
– Lani finds the clue, and Jess exaggerates that her life is saved. She prays for a pit stop.
– Her prayers are not answered as Lani reveals it is a Detour.
– ALLAN: In this Detour, teams will paint their faces Aboriginal style and choose between two traditional practices.
Am I the only one who thinks this would be really offensive in any other context? “Paint your faces like an Aboriginal person?”
Imagine if, say, teams were in an African village and told to paint it in the local Aboriginal style. I think the last time somebody got away with that was the film The Jazz Singer.
I dunno how producers did it, but the face painting appears to be honouring the local peoples. A truly amazing feat to pull off.
Just as long as Allan does not refer to the guys on the left as his “Didgeridudes”, we should be okay for puns.
Also, anyone notice the guy on the right who looks a lot like King Hippo from Mike Tyson’s Punchout!!? All he needs to do is change is belly button into the letter ‘x’ and he is good to go.
For some reason we get to see this kid dance for a few seconds. He has rhythm, I tells ya.
– In Bush Chucker, teams must master the art of boomerang throwing (Jerri Manthey style) and have it land back within the marked circle.
ALLAN: Only teams who master this iconic weapon could have a throwback into the winner’s circle.
Is he really. . .
Yep. Standing inside of an actual circle.
– In Bush Hunter, teams must throw traditional hunting spears until they hit the hay bale. One team member must then eat a traditional Aboriginal delicacy, the witchetty grub, to receive their next clue.
ALLAN: Teams will really need to focus their aim if they hope to spearhead the competition.
He practically turned his hair into a temporary spear.
She seems bored by the grub.
The most acceptable use of hay bales in TAR history.
– LANI: We’re going to do Bush Huntuh.
– Richards are at the beach. Both complain about the tiny shovels and the task in general.
HARDIN: Maybe I’m not going deep enough.
That’s what he said! Ay-oooh!
– Ethan & Khairie join Richards at the beach. Khairie realizes it could take forever. More digging. Hardin has it.
Here’s an aerial view of a boring task.
– Ethan finds the clue. Khairie believes the Richards accidentally unearthed most of the clue.
Clearly this needle in the haystack is a large needle in a smaller haystack. If Ethan & Khairie are out of there before Dominatrix even showed up then it could not have taken very long.
– Dominatrix are now at the beach. They admit they do not have much luck with chance challenges throughout the season.
And that to me looks like a storm is brewing.
– Sunaina & Dimple are lost. There is nowhere for them to stop and realize they go kilometres in the wrong direction. Music starts getting slower. TAR 3 Dieselgate music. This is not good. We witness a montage of Sunaina handing the clue to several locals.
I should note that Dimple tried to pull over locals on the road, but her voice is about as commanding as Sawaka’s from TAR Asia 2.
This man does not know Kurrawa Beach. Perhaps he is too fixated on his ice cream sandwich.
MAN: Geez, never heard of it.
– On their third attempt they finally get some help at a store.
This store is Pimpama. Not to be confused with the strip club that Jess manages called “Pimpmama”.
MAN: Kurrawa Beach! Miles!
SUNAINA: Yes. Which way?
MAN: Kurrawa Beach. Jesus! Long way away. Hour. Hour and a half.
– Commercial break. We resume. Sunaina recaps the original directions from the guy at the race track that they were told two different directions which sent them the wrong way. So they drove 90 minutes in the wrong direction, and must drive another 90 to get back on course.
– Jess & Lani are painting each other’s faces.
– CLAIRE: HOLY F–K!
Yes. She found the clue.
– Jess & Lani are at the Bush Hunter Detour. They watch the demonstration and think it is hard. Lani requests the hay bale be moved closer. Richards ask for directions from a local on the road.
Who knew one of the Richards was capable of wearing a normal hat.
– Ethan & Khairie are second to the Detour. The Social Misfits are a surprisingly strong team. Jess & Lani switch to Bush Chucker. Still nothin’.
– Ethan & Khairie are at Bush Hunter. Jess gets close on one of the boomerang tosses. It is a showdown for first. Lani succeeds with the boomerang toss.
Allan did not explain this, but the wichetty grub must be consumed regardless of your Detour choice.
– JESS: One of us had to eat it. That’s when I looked at Lani when I realized she was my best friend for life.
“I really don’t want to do this. . .”
“Hey there buddy old pal. . .”
“Not gonna do it!”
This is how Lani eats every meal, by the way.
– Lani is freaking out. Jess encourages her. The Aboriginal people are laughing at her (tm Margie Adams). Lani chews a piece. Drops the other half on the mat. Lots of coughing. She swears it is moving before struggling to eat the other half. Lani can succeed because she is not Niroo or Kapil.
Lani creates a freakin’ snorkel when eating gross food apparently.
Ew, you ate floor grub!
– Jess & Lani read that they must drive to Kangaroo Point in a suburb along the Brisbane River. Excellent. I was afraid the pit stop would be a half mile walk away.
JESS: I would not be able to do that. You’ve got guts literally!
He was allowed to be there even without eating the witchetty grub.
– Hussein & Natasha show up to the windy beach. Hussein asks Natasha to use her hands.
NATASHA: As usual there was nobody there and everything had been dug up.
Heh. A pleasant surprise for Natasha.
– Richards pull into the Detour and notice Ethan & Khairie are there. It is starting to pour rain as Ethan & Khairie switch to Bush Chucker. The Richards are the third team to make the mistake of throwing the spear. Hardin notes that the boomerang looks like a frisbee.
– A long montage of watching Malaysians throw a boomerang and Filipino dudes throwing spears.
Ethan’s focus in the pouring rain. He will become a Boomerang Tossing Samurai.
He will be wearing a green tunic in no time.
Hardin really straining on that toss.
– Hussein & Natasha are still on the beach. Please start raining on Hussein.
– Dominatrix are fourth to the Detour. Ethan lands the boomerang inside of the circle. Khairie decides to eat the grub. It is a lot less eventful than Lani eating it. He claims this makes him smarter than Ethan.
I like how Michelle & Claire are not racing off to do the Detour. They just want to watch and be grossed out by Khairie eating the wichetty grub. Did they receive a memo that Sunaina & Dimple are several hours behind?
– Ethan & Khairie read their clue.
– Sunaina & Dimple are at the beach.
DIMPLE: After two hours of driving–
DIMPLE: By then all of the teams had gone home, slept, and probably left for the next leg.
Wow. They have -zero- concept of basic math.
By Dimple’s thoughts, that means teams arrived at the pit stop nine hours before they reached Kurrawa Beach. She cannot drive nor do math.
While Sunaina cannot do math nor dig in sand.
– Dominatrix follow Ethan & Khairie by doing boomerang. Originally they were going to throw spears.
– Hardin hits the hay bale. Herrera is stuck with eating the grub. Hardin probably would have cried or something.
HARDIN: Like gummy bears? Gummy worms? I say gummy worms.
More like a snake drooling in his mouth.
– Michelle whines about her boomerang refusing to come back. Herrera eats the grub and receives the clue.
– Sunaina & Dimple are digging. Tide rises to the point that it is entering the marked area. This is a sign that producers were not expecting a team to be there this late. We see it is around sunset.
See? You would think this task is easier as the water will probably loosen up the remaining clue.
– Commercial break. We resume. Dimple is losing her will to keep digging. But she sticks to it and eventually has it. Sunaina thought they would have been there forever.
Luckily Little Miss Stubborn was there to force her to keep digging.
– Jess & Lani enter the pit stop.
JESS: About time.
I don’t think the first place team that is at least five hours ahead of Sunaina & Dimple is allowed to say that.
For the first time ever, a team arrives early enough to be present for production’s afternoon barbeque. Usually all evidence is taken away by the time teams show up to the mat.
Jess twirls her hair at the sight of the attractive male Aussie greeter.
FIRST PLACE: JESS & LANI
– Allan reveals they have won a four-day ski package in Japan’s premiere mountain snow resort worth a total of $6, 000 US Dollars.
Jess is the only person in TAR Asia history to be excited about a ski trip.
Although she is probably not excited about the skiing, but rather excited about something else in this ski “package”.
Don’t worry Jess & Lani, your secret is safe with me.
ALLAN: It has been a wicked leg for you two. Congratulations.
Wicked? Was that supposed to be a pun on the vans they drove this round, Al?
Since when did Allan ever go with subtle puns?
– Claire successfully throws the boomerang back into the circle. They get to the grub. Michelle requests a smaller grub. Not gonna happen. Neither want to do it. Michelle inquires if the grub is still alive.
This is fantastic.
“F–k you, Logan.”
Michelle starts jumping like the Masai.
Claire preparing to vomit. Michelle is sadly our best option for the team.
CLAIRE: I owe you one for this.
– Michelle starts jumping some more and screams ‘Mommy’ in the funniest voice possible.
– Claire counts down from ‘5’ for Michelle to eat it. Michelle shoves it into her mouth. A lot of jumping around until she swallows it. Claire and the crowd applauds. Michelle cannot stop jumping. This is ADHD to an extreme.
Something is wrong with that woman.
– Sunaina says they “only overshot the route marker by ninety kilometres”.
That is a ton of time to make up.
– Hussein & Natasha are throwing the spear. Hussein considers it hopeless and switches to the boomerang.
– Ethan & Khairie are lost and convince a local to join them. Richards hope Ethan & Khairie are glad Ethan & Khairie turned earlier and pass em.
But miss out on this fashionable stranger!
This is a HORRIBLE day for a barbeque. First time in 245 rounds that there is a BBQ at the mat, and it is in the freakin’ pouring rain. Bummer.
SECOND PLACE: RICHARD & RICHARD
ALLAN: Well congratulations you two–
(RICHARDS walk away.)
That was a weird edit. Either Richards pulled a Pierre & Michel and left mat chat early, or editors made an awkward cut.
Or maybe they’ve got a beef with Wu, who knows.
He must have accidentally clarified for Hardin that he never played a game in the PBA for the Talk n Texters. It is a rough subject for Hardin to this day.
THIRD PLACE: ETHAN & KHAIRIE
– Allan informs them of the bed-making challenge from last round. They had the fastest time in the bed-making challenge, and received a free upgrade to an executive suite for the next time they stay at the Hilton.
Yes, this challenge. One of the least memorable tasks for the whole season. Thank goodness editors gave us a flashback to it.
– So that means Ethan & Khairie have to book a room at the Hilton before receiving the suite. I doubt this prize will be used.
– Suspenseful music plays as Hussein & Natasha toss a boomerang. We only see it from behind Hussein & Natasha, but Hussein lands a successful toss.
This guy cannot even smile when Hussein does well at something. I like this guy.
– Hussein decides to eat the grub. For the first time this race people like that Hussein moves his mouth. He eats it expressionless and without making any comments.
FOURTH PLACE: MICHELLE & CLAIRE
All they do is pant the whole time. I think I make out Claire saying ‘thank you’, but not entirely sure.
Daytime: Where teams finish the leg that did well.
Night time: Where teams finish the leg that did poorly.
– Hussein & Natasha are once again expecting to hear they are last. Both look tired, weak, and exhausted.
– Then Allan gives them the news. After all, Hussein & Natasha have not seen another team since Dreamworld.
NATASHA: NO WAY! Are you serious? Are you serious?!
ALLAN: . . .
NATASHA (Jessie from Toy Story 2 voice): Team five?! You do not know what we have been through today, Allan.
ALLAN: . . .You’re still in the race.
Hussein is secretly sad that he must continue doing this race for his daughter. I know it.
The guy on the left is freaking me out a bit.
– Natasha’s reaction to being 5th place for this leg was made by Pixar.
Thankfully I was able to screencap it.
– We cut to the moon coming out. Sunaina recalls seeing the moon and the stars.
There was something in the air that night, the stars were bright. . .for Dimple.
It is so late in the night that Allan is wearing his Sushi Chef outfit.
Presumably borrowed from Jonas of Survivor: One World.
– ALLAN: Dimple & Sunaina. . .you have been summoned to the pit stop mat because all five remaining teams have checked in.
Dang. They were that far behind? But something does not add up.
They are very clearly wearing face paint from the Detour task. This was the last task to perform before coming to the pit stop.
This means the following:
a) They made it to the Detour probably just after Hussein & Natasha checked in.
b) They must have been struggling with the boomerang and/or spear long enough for production to intervene and tell them “skip the wichetty grub, just go straight to the mat”.
Yes, they got to do every fun thing this round, and were the only ones to avoid the grub. Missing the grub is the rub of being in last.
SUNAINA: If I had to choose between her or 100, 000 dollars, I’d choose her any day. Any day.
lol Dimple doesn’t get any final words.
DIMPLE’S EDITED OUT FINAL WORDS: If I had to choose between Sunaina or 100 grand, I’d probably go with the money. I like money.
But that did not quite fit the narrative.
Next Time on TAR Asia: Ethan & Khairie set out to bury the competition, but will this prove to be a grave mistake. While some teams lose their head, others let their old failures haunt them.
NOTE: Sunaina & Dimple did in fact complete the Detour. I guess producers did not want Sunaina & Dimple to get lost for over three hours again. Or rather, they probably started driving the wrong way when the sound operator called producers to request permission to be saved for the night.
Below is a list of all teams from seasons I have blogged to date, ranked by racing average.
e.g. Don & Mary Jean finished 9th, 8th, 8th, 8th, and 8th. Add up the numbers and divide it by the number of legs they have played.
Therefore their average is 8.2.
Bulls— Round One/Starting Line Eliminations
Eric & Lisa N/A
Bilal & Sa’eed N/A
— F minus–
12th Debra & Steve 12.0 TAR 4
12th Gina & Sylvia 12.0 TAR 3
11th Adrian & Dana 11.0 TAR 16
11th Preston & Jennifer 11.0 TAR 14
11th Anita & Arthur 11.0 TAR 13
11th Ari & Staella 11.0 TAR 12
11th John Vito & Jill All Stars 11.0 TAR 11
11th Vipul & Arti 11.0 TAR 10
11th John & Scott 11.0 TAR 9
11th Ryan & Chuck 11.0 TAR 7
11th Team Seinfeld/Avi & Joe 11.0 TAR 6
11th Dennis & Erika 11.0 TAR 5
11th Deidre & Hilary 11.0 TAR 2
11th Matt & Ana 11.0 TAR 1
10th Edwin & Monica 10.0 Only team to finish last for the first two rounds of the race TAR Asia 3
10th Yani & Nadine 10.0 Would have survived round two, but were marked for elimination and thus officially finished in last both rounds TAR Asia 4
10th Jody & Shannon 10.0 TAR Adventure 16
10th Lisa & Joni 10.0 TAR 9
10th Kevin & Drew All Stars 10.0 TAR 11
10th Neena & Amit 10.0 TAR Asia 3
10th A Black Family 10.0 TAR 8
— F +–
10th Steve & Linda 9.4 TAR 14
10th Anthony & Stephanie 9.5 (Why them?????) TAR 13
10th Megan & Heidi 9.5 (Wow. They sucked.) TAR 7
11th Garrett & Jessica 9.5 TAR 15
10th Kate & Pat 9.0 TAR 12
9th David & Mary All Stars 9.0 TAR 11
9th Peggy & Claire 9.0 May or may not be gutsy. TAR 2
10th Meredith & Maria 9.0 TAR 6
10th Dennis & Andrew 9.0 FF TAR 3
9th Marianna & Julia 8.33 TAR 12
10th Russell & Cindy 8.33 TAR 4
8th Don & Mary Jean 8.2 Saved by NEL once TAR 6
10th Kellie & Jamie 8.0 TAR 10
10th Kim & Leslie 8.0 TAR 1
8th Danielle & Dani 7.8 Yielded TAR 9
8th Marisa & Brooke 7.75 Sucked. TAR 13
7th Mika & Canaan 7.67 Why the heck did they sign up? TAR 15
9th Marcy & Ron 7.67 Bald. TAR 15
9th Isaac & William 7.5 TAR Asia 3
9th Jim & Marsha 7.33 TAR 5
9th Alan & Wendy 7.25 Saved by NEL once TAR Asia 4
8th Manas & Sahil 7.0 TAR Asia 4
8th Singaporean Sophie & French Born Aurelia 7.0 (French Born Aurelia sadly does not know the English words for ‘team averages’. :/) TAR Asia 2
8th Aiello Family 7.0 TAR 8
8th Tom & Terry 7.0 TAR 10
8th Dave & Margaretta 7.0 R.I.P. Margaretta TAR 1
9th Lena & Kristy 7.0 Producers refused to hay bail them. TAR 6
10th Hope & Norm 7.0 TAR 2
7th Christie & Jodi 6.67 Saved by NEL–Became the Devil of Casting Later TAR 14
9th Brad & Victoria 6.67 TAR 14
7th Niroo & Kapil 6.75 TAR Asia 3
6th Maria & Tiffany 6.57 Saved by NEL once and Justin’s blunder again TAR 15
9th Rogers Family 6.5 R.I.P. Renee. TAR 8
8th Susan & Patrick 6.5 TAR 7
6th Henry & Terri 6.44 Used Their Yield; saved by a non-elimination round THREE times. R.I.P. Henry. TAR Asia 2
6th Lenny & Karyn 6.43 Saved by NEL once TAR 1
9th Brett & Kinar 6.33 Rocky finish. TAR Asia 2
9th Aubrey & Jacqueline 6.33 TAR Asia 1
8th Pailin & Natalie 6.33 TAR Asia 3
9th Wanda & Desiree 6.25 TAR 9
7th Aja & Cabbie 6.2 TAR 13
7th Paul & Amie 6.2 TAR 1
8th Steve & Dave 6.2 FF TAR 4
6th David &Mary 6.13 FF Saved by NEL once TAR 10
8th Lance & Keri 6.0 TAR 15
9th Zev & Justin 6.0 Passport lost. TAR 15
10th Ernie & Jeena 6.0 TAR Asia 1
11th Amanda & Chris 6.0 TAR 4
6th Andre & Damon 5.86 TAR 3
7th Daichi & Sawaka 5.83 TAR Asia 2
7th Dave & Lori 5.83 Saved by NEL once TAR 9
5th Kami & Karli 5.8 Saved by NEL once TAR 5
8th Michael & Kathy 5.8 TAR 3
7th Cyndi & Russell 5.8 TAR 2
7th Shana & Jennifer 5.8 Used U-Turn TAR 12
9th Heather & Eve 5.75 Legal team beaten by rule book. TAR 3
5th Nancy & Emily 5.67 R.I.P. Nancy. Saved by NEL once. TAR 1
7th Jeff & Jordan 5.67. Saved by a stupid Blind U-Turn once but dead next day. TAR 16
6th Gaghan Family 5.5 TAR 8
10th Alison & Donny 5.5 TAR 5
6th Tian & Jaree 5.43 FF TAR 4
8th Sahil & Prashant 5.4 FF. Beaten by a bunch of rules. TAR Asia 1
4th Meredith & Gretchen 5.36 Saved by NEL twice TAR 7
7th Monica & Sheree 5.33 FF TAR 4
7th Marshall & Lance 5.33 TAR 5
9th Monique & Shawne 5.33 TAR 16. Praise Jesus.
9th Debbie & Bianca 5.33 TAR 7
7th Gus & Hera 5.29 TAR 6
6th Joe & Bill All Stars 5.25 Saved by NEL once TAR 11
8th Bob & Joyce 5.25 TAR 5
8th Lorena & Jason 5.25 U-Turned TAR 12
5th Mark & Michael 5.22 Saved by NEL once but came up just short TAR 14
3rd Andrew & Dan 5.18 Saved by NEL once TAR 13
7th Silver & Gold/ Wil & Grace 5.17 TAR 3
6th Kelly & Christy 5.14 TAR 13
7th Ray & Deana 5.0 FF TAR 7
7th Melody & Sharon 5.0. Screwed over by weird penalty for another team. TAR Asia 1
9th Steve & Josh 5.0 FF TAR 4
9th Pat & Brenda 5.0 FF TAR 1
9th Mark & Bill 5.0 Wah. TAR 13
5th Fran & Barry 4.89 TAR 9
6th Howard & Sahran 4.88 TAR Asia 1
–C + —
3rd Lyn & Karlyn 4.85 – Yielded TAR 10
7th Ivan & Hilda 4.83 TAR Asia 4
5th John Vito & Jill 4.8 – FF and saved by NEL once TAR 3
6th Mai & Oliver 4.8 In a car TAR Asia 3
7th Teri & Ian All Stars 4.83 TAR 11
7th Schroeder Family 4.75 TAR 8
6th Lake & Michelle 4.71 – Used Yield TAR 9
6th Brian & Greg 4.71 TAR 7
5th Erwin & Godwin 4.70 TAR 10
3rd Adam & Rebecca 4.69 FF and Used Yield and Yielded, saved by NEL once TAR 6
9th Duke & Lauren 4.67 TAR 10
5th Lori & Bolo 4.6 – FF, saved by NEL once TAR 6
2nd Teri & Ian 4.53 – FF TAR 3
8th Kris & Jo–er, Amanda 4.50 U-Turned TAR 14
5th Paula & Natasha 4.45 saved by NEL once TAR Asia 2
4th Louie & Michael 4.36 saved by NEL once, used U-Turn. & trained wolf cubs TAR 16
5th Uchenna & Joyce All Stars 4.33 – FF, saved by NEL once TAR 11
8th Joe & Heidi 4.40 – Blind U-Turned with Injured Knee; TAR 16
1st Dan & Jordan 4.33 – FF once TAR 16
3rd Brent & Caite 4.33 – Used U-Turn TAR 16
4th Kisha & Jen 4.27 Saved by NEL once, U-Turned once TAR 14
3rd Brian & Ericka 4.25 saved by NEL once TAR 15
8th Shola & Doyin 4.25 – FF TAR 2
3rd Ray & Yolanda 4.23 saved by NEL once TAR 9
5th Gary & Matt 4.22 saved by NEL once and c—blocked once in Saunabuss TAR 15
3rd Nicolas & Donald 4.18 FF and U-Turned TAR 12
4th Linda & Karen 4.17 Saved by NEL once TAR 5
3rd Charla & Mirna All Stars 4.15 TAR 11
6th Mary & Peach 4.14 (Two failed FF attempts.) TAR 2
5th Paolo Family 4.13 FF and Used Yield TAR 8
5th Lynn & Alex 4.11 TAR 7
5th Andy & Laura 4.00 – Yielded TAR Asia 1
5th Carol & Brandy 4.00 – U-Turned. May or May Not Be Mean. TAR 16
3rd David & Jeff 4.00 – FF, saved by NEL, grew goatees TAR 4
4th Oswald & Danny 4.00 – FF, saved by NEL once TAR 2
2nd Jaime & Cara 3.92 TAR 14
2nd Pamela & Vanessa 3.92 TAR Asia 2
4th A.D. & Fuzzie 3.90 – U-Turned and saved by NEL once TAR Asia 3
5th Gary & Dave 3.89 – FF TAR 2
6th Sunaina & Dimple 3.875 – Used Yield, U-Turned TAR Asia 4
2nd Kelly & Jon 3.85 Saved by NEL twice TAR 4
1st Zabrina & Joe Jer 3.77 saved by NEL once TAR Asia 1
2nd Sandy & Francesca 3.77 – Used Yield, saved by NEL once TAR Asia 1
4th Diane & Ann 3.75 – Yielded TAR Asia 2
4th Jon & Al 3.73 TAR 4
6th Charla & Mirna 3.71 TAR 5
3rd Blake & Paige 3.69 – FF, saved by NEL once TAR 2
5th Millie & Chuck 3.67 FF TAR 4
5th Kynt & Vyxsin 3.63 Used Yield, saved by NEL once TAR 12
1st Eric & Danielle All Stars 3.62 – Yielded Twice, saved by NEL once TAR 11
4th Mardy & Marsio 3.58 FF, saved by NEL once TAR Asia 1
6th Mel & Mike 3.57 TAR 14
6th Jonathan & Victoria 3.56 TAR 6
3rd Ida & Tania 3.54 Saved by NEL twice TAR Asia 3
4th Joseph & Monica 3.50 – Yielded TAR 9
3rd Andrew & Syeon 3.46 TAR Asia 1
1st Freddy & Kendra 3.46 – Used Yield and Yielded TAR 6
2nd Ronald & Christina 3.45 TAR 12
4th Nathan & Jennifer 3.40 – Never finished in 1st TAR 12
1st Chris & Alex 3.38 – FF, saved by NEL twice TAR 2
1st Chip & Kim 3.38 – Used Yield TAR 5
6th Steve & Allie 3.38 – TAR 16, and ain’t got no clothes.
4th Kevin & Drew 3.36 – FF TAR 1
3rd Brandon & Nicole 3.31 Saved by NEL once TAR 5
5th Terence & Sarah 3.25 TAR 13
1st TK & Rachel 3.18 Saved by NEL once TAR 12
4th Godlewski Family 3.18 Saved by NEL once TAR 8
4th Dustin & Kandice 3.17 – Used Yield, saved by NEL once
2nd Sam & Dan 3.17 U-Turned Pointlessly TAR 15
7th Peter & Sarah 3.17 TAR 10
3rd Weaver Family 3.15 – Yielded Twice, saved by NEL twice TAR 8
1st Reichen & DK 3.15 – FF TAR 4
1st Uchenna & Joyce 3.15 FF, saved by NEL once TAR 7
4th Toni & Dallas 3.10 Still in Russia TAR 13
4th Derek & Drew 3.10 – FF TAR 3
2nd Geoff 26 & Tisha 31 3.09 Used Yield and U-Turn TAR Asia 3
4th Herb & Nate a.k.a. Flight Time & Big Easy 3.09 TAR 15. Znarf!
2nd Rob & Kim 3.08 – FF TAR 10
3rd Ron & Kelly 3.00 – Yielded, saved by NEL once TAR 7
6th Azaria & Hendekea 3.00 – TAR 12
4th Hayden & Aaron 2.92 – Saved by NEL onceTAR 6
2nd Dustin & Kandice All Stars 2.92 – Used Yield TAR 10
2nd Bransen Family 2.85 – Saved by NEL onceTAR 8
1st Linz Family 2.77 – Used Yield TAR 8
3rd Joe & Bill 2.76 – FF, saved by NEL twice TAR 1
–BEST OF THE BEST–
3rd Margie & Luke 2.75 Used U-Turn once TAR 14
5th Henry & Bernie/Bunn-Eh 2.75 – Yielded TAR Asia 3
8th Rob & Amber All Stars 2.75 – Used Yield, Choked TAR 11
1st Flo & Zach 2.69 – FF, saved by NEL twice TAR 3
3rd Ken & Gerard 2.69 – FF TAR 3
4th Oswald & Danny All Stars 2.67 FF x2, Used Yield, saved by NEL once TAR 11
2nd Ken & Tina 2.64 – FF, saved by NEL once TAR 13
2nd Jet & Cord 2.58 – Saved by NEL once TAR 16.
2nd Colin & Christie 2.54 – FF, Yielded, and saved by NEL once TAR 5
2nd Tara & Wil 2.53 – FF TAR 2
1st Rob & Brennan – 2.46 FF TAR 1
1st BJ & Tyler – 2.46 FF, Used Yield, and saved by NEL twice TAR 9
1st Vince & Sam 2.45 FF TAR Asia 3
1st Nick & Starr 2.45 FF TAR 13
1st Tyler & James – 2.38 FF TAR 10
2nd Frank & Margarita 2.38 – FF TAR 1
2nd Kris & Jon 2.38 TAR 6
1st Tammy & Victor 2.33 Used U-Turn Once TAR 14
2nd Rob & Amber 2.31 TAR 7
1st Adrian & Collin 2.23 FF TAR Asia 2
1st Meghan & Cheyne 2.00 FF TAR 15
2nd Eric & Jeremy 1.69 FF TAR 9
lol 3rd Marc & Rovilson 1.46 Used Yield and Yielded TAR Asia 2
Combined Team Averages (Repeats Only)
11 legs David & Mary 6.91 FF, saved by NEL twice TAR 10 + 11
11 legs John Vito & Jill 5.36 FF, saved by NEL once TAR 3 + 11
18 legs Danielle 4.78 yielded, saved by NEL once TAR 9 + 11
19 legs Teri & Ian 4.63 FF TAR 3 + 11
13 legs Kevin & Drew 4.38 FF TAR 1 + 11
20 legs Charla & Mirna 4.00 TAR 5 + 11
21 legs Joe & Bill 3.71 FF, saved by NEL thrice TAR 1 + 11
22 legs Uchenna & Joyce 3.64 FF x2, saved by NEL twice TAR 7 + 11
*31 legs Eric & Danielle 3.48 FF, yielded x3, saved by NEL once TAR 9 + 11
23 legs Oswald & Danny 3.30 FF x3, used Yield, saved by NEL twice TAR 2 + 11
25 legs Dustin & Kandice 3.04 used Yield twice, saved by NEL once TAR 10 + 11
26 legs Eric 2.65 FF, yielded x2, saved by NEL once TAR 9 + 11
17 legs Rob & Amber 2.41 Used Yield TAR 7 + 11
* I determined Eric & Danielle’s average in this last section by adding up all of their individual points from TAR 9, then adding up their total points in All Stars and dividing it by 31.
Rank the Teams
1) Ivan & Hilda
I think Ivan & Hilda were pretty close to a top tier team in terms of entertainment value. Initially I thought they were Henry & Terri Lite, but they clearly have their own unique set of qualities.
For one, Terri doesn’t study dragon culture for a living. It sounds like a made-up occupation from Coach on Survivor, but it isn’t. She is like somebody who watched too much Game of Thrones and made a profession out of it.
Secondly, they have a sense of humour. A lot of jokes and remarks would go way over Henry & Terri’s heads. If Ivan & Hilda had all of their money taken away at a Non-Elimination, I doubt they would challenge producers and get into a verbal argument with Allan Wu.
Furthermore, Ivan is a Eastern European professor working and living in Malaysia. Henry never had that nerdy quality to him–he was a strict military guy spending his fortune in the Philippines.
In addition, Hilda never personally took out her emotions on Ivan. Their jabs at each other were passive. It was not like Henry & Terri where they personally accused the other of being the devil on a weekly basis.
Hilda just had a tough time with most tasks. This became evident from when she sprained her ankle at the opening task, needed to be carried down, but then was miraculously healed.
Okay, Hilda was not completely useless. I exaggerated it a bit for comedic effect, and when you compare to the notorious reputation of strong women in the TAR Asia franchise (minus Natalie Glebova and Monica Low who are half-Canadian coincidentally), of course she will be weak.
But would Flo, Kendra, or Mika ever cut off two pieces from a log alone? Absolutely not.
Compared to females within some American dating couples on TAR, Hilda is much stronger.
Ivan is a gentle giant. I loved it whenever he tried to act intimidating to motivate his wife. You knew not to take it seriously, and would back down and apologize if it had the opposite effect. Also, Ivan never felt more -alive- throughout the race. These are big differences compared to Henry.
The largest difference of all: The other competitors really liked Ivan & Hilda. They were easy to get along with, and could actually win a leg and do well.
I am satisfied with the amount of content we got from Ivan & Hilda during their six-round run. Too bad Hilda never got a confessional during her boot episode, though.
2) Yani & Nadine
In seasons prior to Asia 4, we suffered through weak Speed Bumps that had already aired between seasons twelve and sixteen of the American version. With the twenty-fifth season currently airing, Speed Bumps are openly mocked by all fans.
But seeing the Asian format continue on with Marked for Elimination is refreshing. The penalty puts you in a crappy spot. Particularly when an equalizer halfway through the round makes it nearly impossible for you to beat anyone by much of any time, let alone thirty whole minutes.
Nadine really screwed up the first Roadblock on the cruise ship which earned them that penalty.
Furthermore, Yani failing at the underwater puzzle and being one of five teams to be assessed the four hour penalty put the nail in the coffin.
As I said earlier, they are not the worst team ever. They did beat Jess & Lani and Hussein & Natasha if the thirty minute penalty was erased. Edwin & Monica checked in dead last both legs before the marked for elimination penalty was even factored in.
Their love for Indonesia did not do much to rival with their supposed hatred of Malaysia as they could not do much of anything for two legs. Why, Yani nearly quit over the anaconda task. If Nadine was told by producers to not use physical force, they would have been out right then and there.
In other words, they both contributed to a poorly organized team. They sucked at directions, they sucked at tasks, and could have survived this leg if they could have chosen Rapid Fire as opposed to Rapid Water. So they were bad at decisions too.
Hussein & Natasha choosing Rapid Fire truly made the difference.
Outside of their performance, I thought Yani & Nadine were alright as characters. It appeared they enjoyed their experience for the most part, and got along well. We have seen a lot of mactors in the past do awful in the American and Asian seasons in terms of possessing zero competitive willpower or an interest in the adventure.
So let’s salute what little the second worst statistical team in TAR Asia history were able to accomplish!
3) Sunaina & Dimple
Better than Manas & Sahil overall in terms of character development, skill, and entertainment value? Sunaina is, but not Dimple.
Since I am ever the optimist, I have chosen to judge them from Sunaina’s perspective, so above Manas & Sahil they go.
Sunaina was a fun narrator at times. Just the fast-paced goofy way that she narrated every situation is what was particularly entertaining.
Perhaps the second most entertaining thing about them other than trying to ski.
They engaged in the only true rivalry of this season, and also happened to be a rivalry that tragically stopped halfway through the season.
Dominatrix sabotages Sunaina & Dimple at the airport.
Sunaina & Dimple Yield Dominatrix a round later.
Dominatrix U-Turn Sunaina & Dimple a couple rounds after that.
Ethan & Khairie join in a super tight alliance with Dominatrix, and think Sunaina & Dimple are the most suspicious people on the planet. . .yet Dominatrix started (and ended) this whole feud.
If it weren’t for them, there wouldn’t be any conflict other than Jess & Lani’s conflict with men at airports or who they leave in the middle of the streets.
Sunaina & Dimple even won a leg of the race, and did fairly well. In the last couple legs they certainly lost steam with lower finishes. Sadly Brisbane was not the final NEL as opposed to Sydney, and losing over three hours while driving in the wrong direction as opposed to Hussein who was saved by four hours of incompetence, and given an additional equalizer to catch up to Sunaina & Dimple.
What I liked most about Sunaina & Dimple is that they were game for just about anything. Few teams have said ‘no’ during the race as rarely as Sunaina & Dimple.
Okay, maybe Dimple said ‘no’ to a few tasks but the sound operator did not hear her.
Dimple is the mactress of the team, but yet she was shown the least of anyone this season. I wonder if she was pissed when watching the episodes from home. All we learned abotu Dimple is that she is a crappy driver.
Overall, the team of Sunaina & Whoever That Other Person Was will go down as a fun team for this season.
4) Manas & Sahil
An East Indian all-male team who goes early? Who saw that one coming? Their average is right around the absolute worst for a team to finish in eighth (7.0 after five rounds of play). Even Sahil & Prashant did well a couple of times. Niroo & Kapil had one good round to pull off a 6.75 round.
They might be in the running for worst all-male team in their 20s. In fact, they are. I just looked at the Team Averages. I cannot help but feel sympathy for them that they were beaten by Hussein & Natasha repeatedly who suck overall.
But seriously, they were the first all-male East Indian team to not act like complete divas in TAR Asia. They were also the first ones to not be completely bitter about their eliminations. I think after finishing near the bottom a few times that they knew their days were numbered. Five rounds and being the third team out was a longer life expectancy than anticipated.
They delivered some great moments in their elimination round. Well, it started off with Manas shaving his head for no reason right after the Richards did it for a Fast Forward. They picked a plane rather than a bus knowing the bus is scheduled to arrive earlier than the plane. Sahil completely messes up the pinata game and chucks the stick across the field, and nearly hit a kid in the head. Manas & Sahil were given a miracle thanks to the Intersection due to ditching Pig and the Jig. They went on to screw that up too as they slowed Hussein & Natasha down at stick collecting. Lastly, Manas’ good luck shave did not pay off at the Roadblock, and
Also, begging money from other teams to pay off a cab driver before Alan & Wendy showed up ten minutes later was an unprecedented move. It bought them an elimination.
Manas is better off finding success with the next season of The Bachelor India. Sahil will just go back to depression. I guess.
5) Alan & Wendy
A bickering couple is so rare to find on TAR!!!!!!
They fought a lot by Asian standards not named Mai and Oliver. I am amazed both enjoyed the experience, but Alan was fed up when it came to certain elements of the race.
You need to have some level of cooperation on TAR, and that was certainly not the case with them. Alan screwed up the Roadblock in leg two, they switched Detours and fell behind in leg three, and found themselves with a solid lead this leg but blew it by not understanding the bus system.
However, something tells me the other teams were lucky to be on the express buses rather than knowing they were avoiding the one that was “pulling all the stops”.
The best part about Alan is that his last name is Luk. Everybody in TAR Asia needs to get in on the puns.
Wendy was definitely the better person out of the two, mainly because she was not super jealous all the time and was the only one capable of narrating. Alan was good for the occasional laugh, but hey, there are other characters who provided good laughs too.
I am not saying Alan was bad. . .it is just that his good moments are sprinkled here and there. If anything his Hong Kong English dialect is what made him funnier than what most people would expect from his personality.
Rank the Legs
1) Legazpi, Philippines -> Queenstown, Mount Coronet, New Zealand
This is the first round where we were spared from a sponsour-related task. The worst of it was a Caltex station or an Axiata jersey. No route markers or direct promotional tasks, thankfully.
Also, this was the first self-drive leg of the season. It was about freakin’ time. Watching Ethan & Khairie get pulled over for driving TOO SLOW was hilarious, and seeing them be punished for running too fast on the rugby pitch. New Zealand traffic issues are too common in TAR.
I enjoyed watching Jess & Lani cry after they begged for tickets in the airport. Sure, an equalizer and Ivan’s slow driving spared them at the lumberjack route marker, but that initial doubt as teams had a big lead on them was fun.
Finding a fisherman hours from the airport was good for a route marker, I guess. The lumberjack was physically demanding, the Detour/Switchback fusion was a classic thrillseeker’s TAR staple, the rugby task was highly improved from TAR Asia 3, and the avalanche locator Roadblock required great mental agility.
I just wish teams had to work a bit harder to find the pit stop on their own. -_-
Plus how often do we see snow outdoors in the TAR Asia franchise? It is quite the rarity.
Who can forget Hussein trolling his own daughter at the lumberjack task? And not quitting a task on his own for once? Somehow they beat five other teams this round.
Lastly, the U-Turn marked a rare time where direct payback for an earlier Yield/U-Turn occurred. Dominatrix punished Sunaina & Dimple, but Sunaina & Dimple became the first to survive a Detour.
In short, I loved the balance of this round.
2) Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia -> Colombo, Sri Lanka
Yes, round three is our first clean round of the season.
What was with the Axiata route marker in Kuala Lumpur before heading to Colombo? Was it just a way for the trailing teams to have additional time to catch up and show up to Colombo together? But the temple was an equalizer anyway.
Yeah, this had to be just for the sponsour money.
Other than that the only complaint is that the Detour had a counting task which we already saw in the premiere. It is a bit too early to cycle through similar tasks in a season. TAR 16 had a few counting tasks too so I really am getting sick of them.
I enjoyed seeing the Yield revived. I dunno why but I like it when vintage twists are acknowledged by the franchise.
The ice carry (in Sri Lanka of all places), the sewing Roadblock, and selling peanuts were all good tasks. Also the task of surviving the lethally fast taxi drivers or the lethally priced fares for the cab rides.
Watching Manas & Sahil’s approach of asking other teams to pay their own cab was intriguing to watch because that had not happened since the mugging non-elimination penalties in the American version. Yes, Asia 2 used that penalty but Henry & Terri somehow did not need money from other teams after they protested at the mat.
Also, I wish I had Jess & Lani with me whenever someone tried to rip me off.
My favourite part is how surprised I was that it was a non-elimination round. Outside of TAR Asia 1, TAR 3, TAR 5, and TAR 6, this is the first time in a while where a non-elimination surprised me. Nobody had opened the season with two of their three non-elimination legs being used in the first three rounds.
It means teams will be eliminated rapid fire for the remainder of the season. And that’s not such a bad thing compared to other American ones.
In conclusion, the Yield did nothing and Hussein is a sewing beast. The end.
3) Sydney, Australia -> Brisbane, Australia
An equalizer at the airport meant that the previous leg served no purpose. Oh well. Definitely not the first time in TAR history that this has been done.
This allowed for Hussein & Natasha to not only catch up with their four hour penalty, but make it onto a flight with less than an hour to spare while everyone else had to wait and wait and wait wondering why the heck they were moving so fast in the previous round.
I like that we had another self-drive round here. At least that made up for the blatant equalizer. There was lots of driving which ensured that teams from first to last would be quite spread out.
On the other hand, the tasks were all quite fast. The pistol club, even if you missed a few shots, would be over rather quickly. Jess would have fired off all of the rounds if she knew there was a big enough lead for her at that point.
The Giant Drop seemed to be about two or three minutes between each attempt. That is not much time being gained or lost.
Each attempt at the racing Roadblock is a lap estimated to be 1 minute and 42 seconds or less. Therefore, you only lose a couple minutes per lap.
The beach digging did not take as much time as other infamous beach digs in TAR Asia, but I bet it still took a while regardless. At least they were given shovels for this one. Not the absolute worst task ever, I s’pose.
The Detour was good. Good ol’ fashioned face painting before throwing spears or boomerangs. Oh, and somebody has to be sacrificed by eating a wichetty grub if you want that next clue. It appeared whoever landed with the spear or boomerang would make their partner eat the grub.
Except for Hussein who did both. Yes, I am giving Hussein credit. He and Natasha barely survived elimination once again, and could not be more shocked that somebody else screwed up worse than they did in their super duper fatigued state.
Overall, solid round design. I would make a couple changes, but glad to see classic “drive in the wrong direction for hours and hours” result in someone’s elimination rather than some long time gimmicky task.
4) Galle, Sri Lanka -> Legazpi, Philippines
The most expensive leg in TAR Asia history. Planes, buses, Jeepneys, boats, kayaks, tuk-tuks, jet skis, and Jeeps. That is truly an adventure.
The Detour of catching pigs or doing a dance becomes an international TAR staple whenever Legazpi is a destination.
I -love- that teams were able to decide between traveling by bus domestically or by plane. That had never been done in TAR before. Two teams knowingly made the wrong decision while six teams all took a bus into the lead, and guaranteed to survive the round.
It was also a truly great episode for comedy. Proper pig catching techniques, people dissing Manas & Sahil’s racing abilities, Hilda’s tambourine usage or lack thereof, Manas shaving his head for good luck only to be ousted, and the amusing Jeepney designs.
Oh, and what TAR Asia leg would be complete without an easy Caltex task that has nothing to do with actual racing? Well, to make it ridiculous you turn it into an Intersection of course! I did not like how close the Intersection was to the end of the leg because it served as a minor equalizer, and the only task after the Intersection was a Roadblock dependent upon luck. Producers put as much effort into that Roadblock as Manas did into catching pigs.
The Legazpi environment was great, though. It is a bummer they are suffering from major storms at the moment here as 2014 comes to an end.
By the way, where were Sunaina & Dimple this round? They were rarely shown.
And how the heck did Hussein & Natasha survive again?
5) Queenstown, New Zealand -> Sydney, Australia
***BEGINNING OF REPEATING MYSELF***
Wow. A season of TAR burned through all three NELs before the sixth place team was eliminated. We effectively went from Final Three to being the final NEL for most seasons to Final Four being the new standard and then. . .Final Six?
In the first four seasons of TAR US, NELs did not even -begin- until six teams remained. Heck, TAR 3 and 4 did not use any of them until five freakin’ teams were left.
I prefer NELs being later on because it does the following:
a) builds up rivalries
b) great times to start showing how fatiguing the race truly is, especially in earlier seasons where the filming schedule would be as long as 39 days.
c) ensures the stronger teams survive to the end rather than a really weak team becoming a Cassandra Franklin-like goat and having no chance to win at the end.
But there have since been cons:
a) Super predictable if you stick rigidly to it. Viewers will skip the episode if they know nobody is going home.
b) Super predictable for the players too. Teams stop caring about rushing to the mat if they know it is a NEL. This is evident even in later seasons where Final Four becomes the new standard for having a final NEL.
So naturally, producers starting in TAR 3 started throwing curveballs. They experimented with back-to-back NELs, and in later seasons would have a NEL earlier and earlier and earlier. Heck, TAR Asia 1 used one on the very first leg in Asia 1, 2, and 4.
Unpredictability is pretty much the only reason to have early NELs anymore. You never want your teams to become too comfortable and race in a safe manner. We saw this in round ten of TAR 25 where the Wrestlers were indifferent to being told they were last.
The other benefit to early NELs is that momentum does not stop for the viewer later on in the season.
In short, the benefits for early NELs are:
a) Unpredictability for viewers and teams.
b) Second half of the season carries a lot more momentum.
Obvious cons are:
a) Saves a team who doesn’t really need saving (Lila Abu Lughod reference?) like Don & Mary Jean.
b) Goes against the classic structure.
c) Prevents an underdog come-from-behind win at the end of the season that will inevitably be talked about for a long time.
d) A stronger team ends up having more enemies as they have more teams to compete against heading into various twists.
Yes, I understand why early NELs are necessary and love that all of them are used here in TAR Asia 4, but we must point out why they were not ideal to do in the first place.
***END OF REPEATING MYSELF***
For a NEL, this was a fun round. Particularly watching Asians trying to ski for the first time. Between this and those who did the trapeze, there was a lot of bruising for people like Dimple and Hussein. So many epic crashes. I swear some of the instructors threw banana peels onto the course. It was ambitious for producers to force non-skiiers to do a full on skiing task. Yeah, it would be really easy for most, but they knew full well how brutal it would be.
I loved the Detour where they did a twist on herding sheep. Herding ‘x’ number of sheep is simply not enough. You need to isolate specifically marked sheep and herd them into a pen. Nobody is allowed inside. Jess killed one, and one took a nap on Ethan and Khairie. Heck, Michelle and Claire even switched.
Kiwi crushing like in TAR 13? No, we’ve moved onto grapes as the alternative is to transport wine. It was time consuming and very physically demanding.
Between all of this, there was a lot of self-drive with the same camper from the previous leg.
The only downside to this round is the blatant inclusion of sponsours. Every team delivering their Sony Handicam message to the post office, and the only task truly deemed impossible in TAR history known as the Hilton Hotel Bed Making Challenge really eats up a ton of airtime.
And yes, I am listing the cheesy crying (I am looking at you Rich Hardin and Michelle Ng) as a negative for this round.
Plus it is BS that Jess & Lani did not even receive a prize for coming in first. Even Jaime & Cara won a prize for winning a leg involving a Virtual Pit Stop. It truly was a slap to the face of Jess & Lani.
But on the other hand, I got to hear Jess say ‘murderuh’ and Lani’s over-the-top ‘oh nooooooooo’.
Searching for the bald man with an umbrella is a bit of a needle in the haystack, but I like that teams did full laps without spotting the guy. It was amusing for them to ask random strangers if they have a clue about the weather, and witnessing their confused reactions.
Lastly, we have the trapeze task. Sure, a copy of the TAR 8 task in Montreal, but hey, it has not really been repeated since. Not exactly being repetitive considering how many rounds of TAR we have seen over the years.
The biggest knock against this round is that the teams do not really interact with other teams outside of sympathy over Hussein’s lack of flexibility to perform the trapeze task.
Also, if you hate NELs then you will love every round after this because we will go on to witness team after team after team being eliminated.
Overall, it was a fun round.
6) Colombo, Sri Lanka -> Galle, Sri Lanka
I love that this round goes from plane to train to walking on foot to bus to tuk-tuk to crossing on a tightrope.
That is a lot of modes of transportation in one round, and this is not even the round notorious for the extensive transportation used.
The equalizer was at the beginning, and the route doesn’t mess around for the remainder of the leg. I like how Alan & Wendy start off with a strong lead, but completely screw up by not researching the bus system properly. Vintage TAR at its finest.
Compared to the previous Sri Lanka round, there is very little crossover with other franchises. Sure, it was unoriginal that there was another lock-based task just two rounds since Kota Kinabalu, or that the coconut rope course was nearly identical to TAR 6, but I do not want to be greedy.
Wait. TAR 12’s Learn Ten Words was the other side of this Detour.
And TAR 4’s Match a Mask with a Performer was an active route info.
And the Fast Forward was a head shaving task which we have seen at least three or four times by this point, and was the first offered outside of India.
And Dialog’s sponsourship was already used two rounds ago, and Hilton just one round ago.
And searching through a pile of cell phones for the clue was identical to searching through a pile of Blu-Rays for a clue, but far less time-consuming.
In other words, nothing was all that original about this leg other than the constant struggle with transportation.
I loved Jess & Lani witnessing somebody vomiting, Alan praying for a car crash, and Hussein nearly falling to his death. Lastly, nothing says a good time like having traffic cops laugh at your passport photo.
That was fun.
P.S. There was an original component to one of the tasks. The treasure chest could only be unlocked if you knew Sri Lanka’s history.
7) Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia -> George Town, Penang, Malaysia
Running backwards up a narrow staircase at the starting line? Counting steps at Batu Caves? Driving yourself to a route marker that was aired just a few months ago in the US version, and directly acknowledging it?
Refusing to properly explain a soccer penalty shootout task?
Creating a Detour where ten teams all pick the same Detour where one member pretended to clean a window and the other took a picture?
All of the teams finishing within an hour of each other?
Sorry, that was Bethany Hamilton ranking this leg.
I am glad nobody was eliminated because nothing really happened this round. I applaud producers for trying two unique tasks and a unique visual for the starting line, but re-using Kuala Lumpur and Penang so soon again made it feel stale.
Not to mention my ears burn from hearing Amazing Grace. By the way, did teams ever start forming relationships with each other? I feel like we learned almost nothing about everyone other than a few occupations and country of origin.
Nothing very laugh out loud funny either other than Hilda becoming the new Terri and Jess picking up locals that do NOT like being used.
Losing in your home town is always fun to watch, but seeing you finish in first place for that round comes off as boring as Tammy & Victor. Sorry Ethan & Khairie.
Maybe I just have something against having any more rounds in that whole peninsula. Los Angeles, northeastern China, and the Malay peninsula will always be under fire in these blogs.
I will praise them for doing a Roadblock and a Detour in the season premiere. Lots of tasks squished into one episode, come to think of it.
8) George Town, Penang, Malaysia -> Kampung, Malaysia
What a dumb round design.
An equalizer halfway through the leg?
Give a lousy twenty minute advantage for a team eating 275 chicken balls knowing that failure to complete one of the tasks will automatically give five teams a four hour penalty?
Petting the anaconda looked dangerous.
The underwater puzzle Roadblock was complicated.
The Detour was on par with most tasks in TAR history. Adventure task versus coordination.
Self-drive legs are always what TAR is all about.
But a four hour penalty for a team failing to complete the underwater puzzle Roadblock within ten minutes? Four hour penalties should only be assessed if a team QUITS a task.
WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?!
Allan never explains this crucial detail before the task starts. We just see Claire be led out of the water being told time is up fifteen minutes later, and the screen displays a four hour penalty for her. Viewers are led to believe that producers made up this penalty on the spot, but we know there is no way this can be true.
Maybe Allan said it aloud and producers replied “no, when you say it aloud, the twist sounds stupid”.
Well, if it sounded dumb when Allan says it then maybe the idea is REALLY STUPID IN THE FIRST PLACE!
Following TAR 16’s unnecessarily high levels of nastiness towards each other, it is nice to watch a season where everybody gets along. The closest thing to a rivalry is Sunaina & Dimple simultaneously hating and loving Michelle & Claire who they nicknamed Dominatrix.
Lastly, the Richards should be given ten bucks just for spooking Hilda twenty feet from the pit stop mat. Classic.
And screw you TAR 24 for copying half of the round and ruining any good task that occurred for this leg. Shame on you.
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