AUSTRALIA – JAPAN – CHINA – INDIA – AUSTRIA – LIECHTENSTEIN – SWITZERLAND – BRAZIL – UNITED STATES
Previously on TAR: Eleven teams returned for a chance to settle some Unfinished Business, but the opportunity came at a steep cost during the Starting Line Challenge.
The last team will receive an Automatic U-Turn–a challenge where a team must complete both sides of the first Detour.
Dating couple Amanda & Kris floundered in the field of planes, and suffered the U-Turn penalty.
KRIS: It’s our own fault.
NOTE: Actually, it is production’s fault for implementing a redux of the TAR 15 twist, but okay.
In Sydney, teams dove underwater and then sailed across the water. Father-daughter Gary & Mallory were first to arrive and won an “important” prize, but received some shocking news.
Tonight, as ten teams continue forward, last place team Jet & Cord are tied up at the Roadblock. Will the ultra douchey homophobic cowboys be able to get back in the saddle?
NOTE: Jesus. “Get back in the saddle”? TAR loves this phrase way too much.
– Intro time.
– Now we return to Jet trying to figure out the word puzzle. He is panting and sweating.
Who the hell is he?
Mini Me? Eeeee. Eeeeee. Get down from there, Mini Me!
Whatever you do Jet, don’t launch into a confessional about how they only have one cryptogram in Oklahoma and it’s only one letter.
– Jet recaps the task for us in a confessional. He is stumped.
JET: Son of a buck. Shhhhh.
Jet would curse right now, but doesn’t wish to do so because the cameras are on him.
– We cut to Shelly Beach.
TENTH PLACE (pre surfer butt slap): KENT & VYXSIN
KENT: Make your way back to Sydney and get To Sail To Stop.
Vyxsin is too dehydrated to listen.
Okay. Now she is ready to listen.
– Phil jumps in to tell us that To Sail To Stop is leading teams to an anchor.
That is a tiny anchor. Ingrid is not much for extravagant artwork is she?
WHOA! In Cambodia, they refer to this as Anchor Wat.
– The anchor is beside City Town Hall. Here, they will find a sign up for one of two charter flights.
“Our heart is in the country–our assholes are in the city.”
Barring any more heart attacks, six teams will indeed have a thirty minute lead over the other five teams. It will be the first flight that actually matters this season.
– The charter flights will take them to Broken Hill.
Which is exactly what occurred after the town started listening to Brother Anthony. The other alternative was Empress Hill.
– But seriously, Broken Hill is a small mining town 684 miles from Sydney.
Australia’s answer to Sudbury–if only there was a lake for Trebek to paddle across.
Tim & Danny are highly aroused right now.
– Gary & Mallory enter a cab. Unfortunately, their driver is about to try his hardest to troll them.
MALLORY: Do you know anywhere we would sign up for charter flights?
DRIVER: I don’t know. Heheheheheh. Sydney’s a very big area–so like? Where are you going? I don’t know.
Gary & Mallory are having all sorts of regrets entering this taxi. He is making them feel like Kentucky Knuckleheads.
DRIVER: Where’s ‘Sail to Stop’?
GARY: It’s a place where we get charter planes.
Spending the next thirty minutes being mocked by the driver sounds like fun.
– Amanda & Kris recap their U-Turn from last season.
– Kisha & Jen enter a cab.
– Justin believes teams underestimate them because Zev has Asperger’s, and isn’t seen as a team that can win.
Well, as long as opening trunks is not the final Roadblock of the season.
– We go back to Jet. Any progress?
JET: Son of a buck. I have no idea what I’m doing.
Man. Cord has held the same pose for consecutive episodes. He should be a trophy statue model.
– Flight Time & Big Easy discuss what they have in common.
FLIGHT TIME: We both have two kids. We both play basketball. We both live in Louisiana.
BIG EASY: We both love crow fish. We’re different in a lot of other ways. I have tattoos, he don’t. He has piercings, I don’t.
Where that piercing is cannot be aired on cable.
FLIGHT TIME: He’s tall, I’m short. He’s ugly I look good.
We learned more about Flight Time & Big Easy in two seconds than we did about Jazmine & Danielle in five full episodes.
– Globetrotters decide to go on a ferry because a taxi will take too long. The other four teams thus far are taking a taxi. We’ll see how it plays out.
– Jaime & Cara also agree to take a ferry. The same goes for Margie & Luke. This leads into the millionth confessional about how much Jaime & Cara love working with Margie & Luke.
I love how Jaime & Cara have two modes when being edited on TV:
1) Be complete and utter assholes to locals because of Jaime’s temper/aggressivity.
2) Win over a bit of the audience because they are Margie & Luke’s best friends.
If Margie & Luke weren’t on TAR 14 or 18, Jaime & Cara could have possibly gone down as one of the most unpopular teams ever. I know Margie & Luke do not receive praise on this blog pretty much ever, but I do like they took a team under their wing who really needed to be saved from the vitriol of casual viewers.
The ferry is proving to be so much faster than a taxi.
– We get a flashback to the final Roadblock where Margie suggests to Luke to work with Jaime. I feel like it’s been a TAR 14 clip show thus far.
– What does Luke feel about his bon with Jaime & Cara?
Whoa. Editors cut to Cara’s reaction.
What the f-ck? Cara is giving Luke the sexy eyes.
Seriously, it’s one of the strangest/creepiest editing cuts in a while.
Because editors have yet to mention this about Luke after fourteen episodes, the joke they are secretly going for is that Luke is gay. It will never happen that Jaime & Cara can be his girlfriends.
But since 99% of the audience isn’t privy to that information, they think there is some genuine attraction there and Luke is acting as a ladies’ man.
Editors always love doing stuff like this which appeals to the one percent.
– Ron & Christina are arguing.
RON: There’s the only way to get out of this island is by ferry.
CHRISTINA: Alright then WE are going by ferry.
“WE are going by ferry, and any team not from season fourteen will be bright enough to take a taxi.”
– Christina says it is very difficult for a parent-child team on the race because of their pitfalls and pushing each other’s buttons.
NOTE: Steve & Allie, Margie & Luke, Gary & Mallory, Mel & Mike, and Toni & Dallas have all gotten along perfectly fine since TAR 12.
Hell, even Andie & Jenna got along, and they only met for about twenty minutes before the race began.
So, it might just be you and Ron, Christina.
– And yes, we get another goddamn flashback. This time to Ron & Christina’s infamous run in Amsterdam.
I love how Ron has a blank look in the flashback. He couldn’t have less of a reaction to Christina’s tears.
RON: In the environment of sleep deprivation, I may refer to some of my impatient bad habits.
Oh c’mon, Ron. That was the Old You. The Hernia You.
– We see them enter the ferry terminal.
RON: Be satisfied rather than nagging me to death! Ugh!
Miyagi is back, ladies and gentlemen.
– Jet & Cord are still at the Roadblock.
Waiting for the inevitable four hour penalty.
– Jet thinks he has it. He and cord start running once more to the captain. Jet doesn’t know if it will be correct. He sounds doubtful.
Jesus, Cord. Just because it is a -little- bit windy doesn’t mean you have to make the silly gesture of holding onto your ridiculous hat. Don’t worry, we know how much of a cowboy you try to be. We are already aware of the hat’s presence. You don’t need to emphasize it more than you have to.
– Did they get it?
– We go back to Gary & Mallory’s taxi.
I think Gary & Mallory were kinda hoping you would know, Mr. Driver.
MALLORY: We have to find out where the place is.
No kidding. They jump out of the cab instantly.
MALLORY: Dad, please I want you to make a decision right this very second!
Mallory points at this very second.
GARY: We’re gonna hop in this cab and–
MALLORY (excited/blown away): WHOOOOA.
Just imagine how much bigger Mallory’s reaction would be if her dad told her they were going out for ice cream.
– Kris wants to walk out on the streets. Amanda agrees to humour him.
– The taxi driver claims Kisha & Jen are now at the Sail to Stop.
JENN: Are you sure, Phillip?
“Are you REALLY sure, Phillip?”
– They take Phillip’s word and exit the cab. Kisha & Jen ask a man on the street if this is the right place.
Haha. Phillip just screwed ya.
– The man directs them to a nearby information centre. Zev & Justin join them where Jen has been allowed to use a computer.
Jen doesn’t need anyone’s company.
We’re working “together”.
Has there ever been such an audience for somebody using Google?
Did a Pacman game appear on the home page?
Or the Mario ‘?’ block with the coin sound effect?
– Justin describes the situation.
JUSTIN: We caught up with Kisha and Jen. We started Googling.
ZEV: That sounds very dirty.
“We started to Google then we moved straight onto Binging each other. I could have sworn one of them yelled ‘Yahoo!'”
– The screen must have large font because Kisha thinks it is the anchor at Town Hall.
Meanwhile, I for one am very curious what Vagaboo is in the bottom right corner.
Justin is too. It might be time to leave Sydney, Justin.
– Justin says Town Hall is in walking distance and they go together.
– We cut to Mel & Mike. Mel lives up to the expectations of TAR 14.
MIKE: Did you hear that, Dad? Not a pit stop.
MEL: I’ll never make it, Mike. Sorry.
If it weren’t for the people on the beach, Mel could pretend like he is passing out in the middle of the Arabian desert like some of his favourite classic films.
MIKE: Dad, you just gotta–
MEL: No, I’m going to try Mike but let’s not push it–
MIKE: But Dad, I’m serious. I fear for you.
MIKE (confessional): Physically, it sure feels like the race is more difficult this time.
Not for the guy to the left who is barefoot and in skin-tight jeans!
But seriously, why is Mike surprised by this? Am I the only person who recalls how much of a tough time Mel had in TAR 14? The guy was a wreck from the beginning, and that was in colder climates until the India round.
– Now things start to get simultaneously hilarious and scary as Mel approaches a ‘one way’ sign.
MEL: My legs! JESUS!
(Pause as he stands still.)
MEL (full body twitch): GOHHHHH!
Who are you trying to be, Mel?
– Mel yelling when he has the leg cramp is a really funny piece of audio. I have replayed it multiple times. The race is currently winning with their plan of casting somebody who they know has a forty percent chance of dying before the pit stop.
MIKE: After the faux pit stop, it was a rude awakening as to how tough this race is gonna be.
. . .For injury prone seventy year olds.
– Kent points out there are taxis. Vyxsin insists they are getting on the boat.
Who knew locals in first world countries have an easier time accepting people who look like Kent than Syrian refugees.
– The situation with Mel gets scarier as they board the ferry. Margie & Luke are there with him.
Margie is a nurse. It only makes sense she would jump in.
– They try sitting Mel down on a seat.
The lady sitting by the window must be very bewildered as to what’s going on. Here she is hoping to take a smooth ferry ride to Sydney when she is bombarded by American contestants, a camera crew, and likely some medics off-screen.
“That’s not how you sit in a chair!”
Mel looks even worse than Mike Jumba did in Ghana last season.
– Mike starts crying.
MIKE (crying through clenched teeth): What are we supposed to do? Dad, Jesus.
Geez, producers. Bring in the damn medics and take him to a hospital already! He looks like he is dead!
“The Amazing Race is supposed to be fun!”
– Mel (eventually) completes the physically demanding task of sitting upright in a chair.
And Margie is the epitome of fun!
You’re harshing her mellow, Mr. White.
MIKE: Dad, you push yourself so hard today. I don’t wanna kill you just for some joyride.
If the expression “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” applies to TAR, Mel should be freakin’ Superman by now.
MEL: Okay. . .Let’s do this. . .I’ll be responsible. . .for my decision.
Mel. . .it. . .took you. . .twenty seconds. . .to utter a. . .simple sentence.
Mel is responsible for his own decision, anyway. Do you know how many waivers he had to sign which he was agreeing to free any third party of any fault of what happens to him?
– Let’s get away from dark comedy and on to. . .Jet & Cord.
We get it. You guys are good ol’ Oklahoma boys who don’t cuss n’ such.
– Jet says sailing isn’t his thing.
Nor is it for people in New Mexico.
– Maybe Jet & Cord just don’t know they will be avid sailors yet.
“Oh my wavy.”
The water is about to invent its own sport.
Jet Skiing–see how long it can be on top of Jet before he can get back up.
He is not happy. In fact, I think he is ready to spit his own little Jet Stream at the lady for dunking him in the water.
– Back on the ferry, Margie & Luke find a helpful woman on board. They use her laptop to Google the location of the anchor.
“I’ll just sign you guys up for CBS All Access. If I get enough referrals, you might just see me back on the show again in three years.”
– Margie & Luke pass on the news to Jaime & Cara.
– Kisha & Jen and Zev & Justin run to the anchor.
JEN: There it is!
Did somebody who played competitive basketball just yell “There it is!”?
– Kisha & Jen and Zev & Justin celebrate when they see nobody has made it to the sign-up sheet.
Zev says Googling is dirty, but I think whatever Kisha is doing to that board might be worse.
Zev gets nearly slapped in the face.
So much for the “second” flight having the advantage. Zev & Justin beat out both Gary & Mallory and that other team to the sign-up board. And most importantly, Kisha & Jen are at the top.
Well, until four other teams show up for Flight #1, but still.
– Yes, Kisha does her trademark laugh in celebration.
KISHA LAUGH COUNT: 2
Hey Justin, I know you want to slap Kisha on the head for it, but it is not necessary. We have all come to embrace it.
– Margie kisses Mike on the cheek as the ferry anchors in Sydney.
MARGIE: Take good care of your dad.
MIKE: I will. Thank you, Margie.
This exchange reminds me of a Thanksgiving dinner when an aunt is talking to the child of an ailing family member.
It’s like Margie is pretty much assuming she will be ahead of Mel & Mike for the remainder of the season, and this is their farewell.
– Mel & Mike, Globetrotters, Kent & Vyxsin, Margie & Luke, and Jaime & Cara are ether asking locals or places with Internet for help.
But first, Flight Time is signing his autograph.
– Kent & Vyxsin are in a store with a bunch of gossip magazines.
I have never heard of What’s On. Is that an Aussie answer to TVGuide? And who is that on the cover? Is it a prominent American figure or does Australia have their own set of national stars in the media? I for one am curious.
NOTE: Thanks to Australian readers/co-hosts of YATNcast Ben and Michelle, and reader/TAR epert David, What’s On is a free magazine designed for tourists entering the city.
Now let’s continue.
Could the camera operator not get a better shot of Kent & Vyxsin? We’re just going to rely on the glare from the computer screen?
– Big Easy asks the women to look him up when he comes back to play.
Why does she have a tiny ponytail on her head?
Wait, it’s not even a ponytail. It is just some weird pink thing stuck in her hair. What type of accessory is that?
– Jet & Cord are approaching the buoy. They have a good plan.
JET: Just run me right into it if you don’t mind.
Here. . .
We. . .
I think indoor cats and Jen can handle water better than Jet.
– Cord offers Jet one bit of reassurance.
Yes, that is correct. Jet is in a tie with Mel in terms of his current physical state.
– Jaime & Cara and Margie & Luke are 3rd and 4th on the charter flight.
– They are VERY excited.
All four of them including Luke couldn’t be more excited.
It’s the TAR equivalent of Joe Carter hitting a home run in game 6 of the World Series, but if he had instead done so and celebrated like that after winning the fourth game of the regular season.
All that’s missing is the shower of Gatorade.
– Gary & Mallory are on the street.
GARY: We don’t know where we’re going. Listen to me.
MALLORY: I’m listening. I’ve been listening to you all day.
“Excuse ME? That is NO WAY to talk to your father, young lady! You’re grounded. No cell phone. No computer. And you’re not going to go to that party with that new boyfriend of yours! Josh is a bad influence on you, Mall!”
Gary’s response wasn’t shown on screen, but I assume this is how it normally goes down when they’re at home in Kentucky.
– Mallory stops with the lippy tone (that’s a misogynistic word if I’ve ever heard of one, but probably one plenty of viewers were using to describe how Mallory talked back), and wants her dad to make a decision because she is counting on him. He chooses a direction for them to walk.
This is the part where Gary pulls a Blair and forces Mallory to make the decision. But hey, that’s not how they do things in Kentucky, so the power continues to be placed in Gary’s hands.
NOTE: I don’t know if Mallory met a “super cute boy” named Josh and started dating him prior to TAR 18. It sure sounds like something that would happen to her, eh?
ANOTHER NOTE: Yes, Mallory was disciplined with The Strap once they flew home after the race was over.
– Ron & Christina run into Mallory. The two father-daughter teams finally link up. Not before an interruption, though.
What is this?
Mallory was just given the bird.
This is the first time I have seen a bird photobomb on The Amazing Race.
– Mallory claims they have been looking for Sail to Stop for hours. Amanda & Kris are standing by a cab not knowing what to do either. They hear some screaming.
These RFF fanatics are really getting out of hand!
Oh, it’s just Mallory.
– Mallory and Amanda & Kris agree they are all lost. Amanda & Kris decide to follow them and Ron & Christina.
– A lady tells Christina where to go.
Heh. Amanda & Kris couldn’t even make it into this group shot. Hilarious.
– Who is the fifth team on the first charter flight?
Or the other teams just really suck.
– And who snags the final spot?
Wow. A seventy year old man who nearly died a few hours earlier on a ferry, and a couple who barely survived multiple panic attacks are on the first flight.
– We cut to Jet & Cord.
Eleven minutes into the following episode and they are just finishing the first round of play.
Now that is some TAR (1) flashbacks right there.
PHIL: Jet & Cord, you’re the last team to arrive.
CORD: We know.
Yeah, they probably had an easy time figuring that one out.
“But production just slipped this into my pocket which means you are still in the race!”
“Oh my gravy! We have another round to throw whoever we hate under the bus!”
PHIL: Read that thang! Don’t waste your time standing here talking to me!
“Because I am doing my facial exercises at the moment! Scram! A Maori Warrior showed me this on my last visit to Christchurch!”
– Yeah, the Cowboy theme is playing. Lots of cowboyesque noises are made.
– Fliight Time & Big Easy are bummed when they sign up on the second charter. A lot of locals are now standing around. Ron nearly knocks one over.
It’s a sharp corner, guys!
– Ron & Christina are eighth to the board, Gary & Mallory are ninth, and Amanda & Kris are tenth. Amanda & Kris not only finished last at the paper plane task, and now lost to everybody except Jet & Cord in the race to the sign-up board.
– Jet & Cord begin their quest to find To Sail To Stop.
WOMAN: I have no idea.
JET: I don’t either.
CORD: Oh my gravy.
OH MY GRAVY COUNT: 1
CORD: We’re out of ideas.
JET: We are out of ideas.
“Nice view of the opera house, though.”
NOTE: Reader and YATNcast co-host Michelle Pearce-Denovan was in the area for when the TAR 18 teams were traveling through (she high fived Justin during the day along the race course). Geographically, she says it makes absolutely zero sense for Jet & Cord to be anywhere near the Opera House while racing. Even if they were super lost.
We concluded that producers probably forced Jet & Cord to run by the Opera House just because it would be a great shot for television.
Jet & Cord are on the verge of riding into the sunset.
– It’s night time as Mel & Mike show up at the domestic airport. Everybody is there.
JAIME: I haven’t seen the cowboys all day. Haven’t seen them at all, actually.
How late is it? The first flight departs at 6:00am, but people are already standing around in line.
They’re better off just covering downtown Sydney in a grid-like pattern until they stumble upon the City Town Hall by chance.
– Commercial break. We resume. They ask a cab driver.
Well that was solved quickly.
– It could still be dark at 6:30am depending on when the season was filmed. Do they make the flight?
CORD: Long day today, but in this one instance, we are very glad there are other teams on this flight.
Who is following who now, bitch?
– Jet says they should go straight to the airport. Cord agrees.
Things just aren’t going the way Jet & Cord were expecting it to in a second stint where they probably thought they had Final Three on lockdown.
– It’s daytime. Kisha interacts with Mel.
MEL: Thank you. Seeing you makes it twice as better.
Well. . .
Seeing how he is not yelling ‘GOHHH!’, I would say it is a better start.
– The first flight prepares to depart.
FIRST FLIGHT (6:00AM): Kisha & Jen; Zev & Justin; Margie & Luke; Jaime & Cara; Mel & Mike; Kent & Vyxsin.
And Mel goes back to playing dead. I have no idea what the hell Mike is eating, but the man behind him really wants it.
SECOND FLIGHT: (6:30AM FLIGHT): Flight Time & Big Easy; Gary & Mallory; Ron & Christina; Amanda & Kris; Jet & Cord
– The first flight lands in Broken Hill. They find the marked cars and open the clue.
Yeast Lords? Mel & Mike are Yeast Lords? I think if I wanted to be the Lord of anything, Yeast would be on the absolute bottom of my list. That’s disgusting, Mike.
– Teams must now drive themselves to The Living Desert. It is a vast barren landscape in Australia’s Outback. This is where they will find their next clue.
The only thing that’s alive there are about a dozen animals that can probably kill you.
– Jaime asks Margie & Luke if they should get directions first before driving.
DIRECTIONS: Drive on that one road. Keep going. Then stop.
Who could possibly screw up driving on a one-way road?
Well, other than Meredith & Maria.
– Zev points out The Living Desert on Justin’s map. In another vehicle, Kisha laughs.
KISHA LAUGH COUNT: 3
– Mel & Mike also hit the road.
MIKE: How are you doing, Dad?
“Dad? Dad? Dad!”
MEL: I feel much better.
ZEV: We’re in the Outback.
JUSTIN: This is the Outback.
ZEV: There’s not a lot of Steakhouses.
– Mel & Mike are driving behind Kisha & Jen.
MEL: Kisha is a very slow driver. C’mon Kisha. A kangaroo can run faster than your driving, Kiiiishaaa!
Mel has two modes: Dead Grandpa and Angry Grandpa.
– Margie & Luke, Kisha & Jen, and Kent & Vyxsin take the slow approach as they all enter a gas station together.
Protect your PIN, lady! The camera operator is over your shoulder.
MAN: Turn on Adelaide to the right.
Those are some complex directions.
– The three teams scramble back to their vehicles.
From driving golf carts to SUVs in the Outback, Luke is really coming into his own.
– Kent says that he is caravanning with Jaime & Cara and Margie & Luke while adding that the other flight should be landing.
Are you serious, Kent? You wasted thirty minutes asking locals for a clue that should be relatively easy to find?
– Second flight does indeed land.
I like how instead of choosing a stereotypical animal to name their airlines after, they decide to name themselves Rex. Yeah, because remember how the Australian Outback is known for dinosaurs?
– Mallory is cheering and smiling while everyone else is intense.
– Mallory already knows exactly where the Living Desert is. They are in seventh. Amanda & Kris are eighth. Globetrotters are ninth. Cowboys are tenth. This means Ron & Christina are in last.
– Ron & Christina talk about where they are going.
CHRISTINA: Make sure you see where the other cars are going.
RON: Where is it?
CHRISTINA: It’s to the right.
“Where. . .?”
“I wonder what Shana & Jennifer are doing in Lithuania right now. . ”
“That car nearly hit us!”
CHRISTINA: Dad! Dad! Wrong side!
RON: Oh my goodness.
The hernia was close to being the least of his problems.
– Zev & Justin, Mel & Mike, and Kisha & Jen, who all were perfectly capable of finding the clue without extra help, all pull out at the clue box. It’s a Detour. If you thought it was going to involve Aboriginal traditions like TAR 2 and TAR 9, you’d be right.
“I love Leapfrog!”
This guy just took facepalming to a whole new level.
Actually, these are all Dream Teamers hired by producers. They aren’t Aboriginal people.
Phil has hired his own Didgeridoo player to follow him everywhere he goes. I am curious if he can play the TAR theme for us.
– Teams must choose between Spirit World and Natural World.
– In Spirit World, teams use traditional material to create an Aboriginal ground mosaic that matches the example. Once completed, they must perform a dance on top of their mosaic to raise their ancestral spirits.
And to also raise the roof! The didgeridoo player is making this party bumpin’.
This example seems like it would take a while.
So much chalk.
Mallory won’t even complete the example. She’ll just start drawing outlines of flowers and the sun shining when she sees the chalk.
I know what Detour option Debb Eaton is choosing.
Tyler & James are going to be disappointed the mound of white stuff is chalk upon closer inspection.
– In Natural World, teams create a series of original territory markers.
This guy is lonely.
Although apparently he has a miniature lizard and miniature kangaroo with him.
– Using a natural paint made from water and a clay-like pigment, teams must put the paint into their mouth and spit the substance on the stencil to create four images.
They really don’t have much in the Outback.
Ew! He just spat all over his own hands!
At least he didn’t spit on somebody else’s hands or face, but still.
– If they foam, er, form the images correctly, they will receive their next clue.
P.S. Your clue is covered in spit and clay.
– Justin decides to do Spirit World. He explains why.
JUSTIN: Zev, he is very artistic.
ZEV: And autistic.
. . .
Justin was not expecting that zinger.
JUSTIN: He makes art projects at home so he’d feel right at home with the mosaics.
There is one problem, though.
ZEV: I’m not good at dancing.
JUSTIN: It’s okay. Everybody wants to see you dance.
And you’ve got dance instructors who can show you the moves!
Drop that beat! He’s the best Didgeridoo Jockey in the biz.
In all seriousness, these tasks are kinda cool as well as inspired.
– Kisha & Jen and Zev & Justin begin working on the mosaic.
KISHA: Alright. Let’s get ‘er done.
Brace yourselves as a handful of Americans unintentionally insult thousands of years worth of Aboriginal tradition.
– All three teams begin the outline except for Mel who goes after “the brown ones”.
Mel is off to a helpful start.
– Mike tells Mel he will bring the stuff over back and forth as Mel just has to start filling it in.
– Kent & Vyxsin, Margie & Luke, and Kent & Vyxsin are all doing Spirit World.
– Mallory sings the name of the route marker as she is joined by Amanda & Kris. They have been glued together since the first minute.
I am amazed producers remembered Amanda & Kris to put them at the bottom of the note. Having to do anything because of a paper plane in Palm Springs is ridiculous.
– Gary observes the other teams.
GARY: They’ve got their shirts off.
As in “only Zev & Justin”.
“You’re not the only one in shape, boys.”
– Jet & Cord are ninth to the clue. They decide to do Spirit World too. Same with Flight Time & Big Easy. Big Easy always loves to dance.
– Ron & Christina are last to the clue. Ron prefers the Spirit World.
Christina has to remind Ron about Amanda & Kris’ U-Turn.
– That’s right. All eleven teams are working at the Spirit World task simultaneously. Given it is a limited area, everybody is in tight quarters. Everything except for a paper plane has been meaningless up to this point.
There is no room for teams to relax.
GARY: It was bedlam. Every team was there.
MIKE: There were teams to the left of us. Teams to the right of us. It was stressful to be trying to do your mosaic with ten other teams at the same time.
A mosaic shall determine everyone’s fate.
– Mel tries his hand at transporting some of the material.
He is doing what he can manage.
MIKE: Good job, Dad.
MEL: Same to you, son.
MEL: My legs!
He can’t hold it in any longer!
It’s spilling everywhere!
He is still struggling with holding that last little bit in.
MEL: GEEZ! Just got a cramp.
“And I’ve made a bit of a mess down there.”
The guy only needs one hand to play the didgeridoo. Impressive.
– The women are chanting.
BIG EASY: Sing it girls, sing it!
That command doesn’t quite work out as well here on The Amazing Race.
Especially when compared to that command being issued by Mystikal.
BIG EASY (nodding his head towards the women): UH HUH! YEAH! UH HUH!
Sorry, “Bleasy”. His shirt got scrunched.
And that girl could not be any less impressed by Big Easy getting involved. Maybe a middle school was hired to participate in this and she -really- wanted to stay home today.
CHRISTINA: Uh huh. Yeah.
You know times have changed when somebody is following Big Easy’s actions instead of the other way around.
Oh, and here’s a shot of a kangaroo. Because, you know, Australia.
BIG EASY: Now break it down! UH!
“Go back to your mosaic, Big Easy.”
The kids only want to interact with you if you are spinning a basketball on your fingertip.
– Kisha & Jen think have it done.
WOMAN (harsh tone): N-now.
“And I will keep saying ‘no’ until my hair turns grey.”
JEN: I am really dumbfounded.
– Kent & Vyxsin present their mosaic proudly. It is approved.
Who knew in a task called ‘Spirit World’, the Goths would be first to finish.
– Vyxsin realizes they have a dance to do, but first we check in with Mel.
MEL: This is so much nicer on my knees breathing.
You know Mel is in rough shape if this is the most comfortable position he has been in all day.
– Per usual, Kent & Vyxsin panic once again.
KENT: Vyxsin, come help me! Come get children!
Margie is one of the children?
KENT: Go get the children!
“The Outback Human Trafficking Ring isn’t going to jumpstart itself!”
KENT: I need you to go get children!
JAIME: “I need you to get me some children.” That’s hilarious.
Jaime is not impressed.
KENT: Vyxsin, please get me children.
“And also some pants that fit me in a more appropriate manner.”
– Jen is trying to figure out what she is missing. Meanwhile, Kent thinks he is missing children.
KENT: Children, let’s go dance together!
If their parents were present, something tells me Kent would have been arrested by now.
VYXSIN: They don’t seem to know what we’re doing.
KENT: No, but they’re going to dance with us.
And Vyxsin is the reluctant accomplice.
– Kent announces he is ready to perform.
– Zev & Justin ask for approval.
The Moustache says yes.
– Margie & Luke are also approved by the same man. Margie reaches out assuming she will receive a clue.
He mocks her with silence.
JEN: I am super dumbfounded.
It won’t be long until she is ultra dumbfounded.
– Kent leads the kids in a dance around the mosaic. Apparently nobody knows what to do after the mosaic is done.
“Follow me kids as I lead you in the Michael Jackson Thriller Dance.”
It needs a bit more work, Kent.
– Zev & Justin figure out what to do.
ZEV: We need them to dance!
JUSTIN: Maybe we don’t need them.
“Maybe producers didn’t want us to abduct over one hundred Broken Hill youths for the purpose of finishing this Detour.”
Wise call, Justin.
– Justin is onto something.
Hopefully Justin isn’t distracted enough that he runs into the didgeridoo player who unwisely positions himself in the middle of all of the traffic.
– Margie notes the instructions too. She does the most momlike dance in history. All she does is hop onto the mosaic, make some offensive First Nations WOO-WOO-WOO sound, and wave her hands in the air.
Margie O’ Donnell breaking it down on the dance floor!
– Zev & Justin end up walking in a circle doing The Claw.
I totally thought Zev of all people would be the one who would twerk on the mosaic.
– Jen asks Kisha where the bigger rocks would be.
Who did take the big rocks?
Oh. That makes sense. Outback Cocaine is a helluva drug.
– Kent seeks validation.
KENT: Do you like our dance, my dear?
And the answer he gets does not beat around the Outback bush.
“And the people who lived on this land ten thousand years ago had an easier time covering their butt crack than you fools.”
– Justin asks if their dance is satisfactory. It is. Now they get their clue.
It should be noted that most of these shots have visible camera and audio crew (the guys on the left). There are many times where the cameras are clearly visible.
A bit tough to conceal them when you have twenty-two contestants + twenty-two audio/camera crew members + twenty kids + a dozen locals + producers overseeing what is going on confined to a small area.
– Justin reads they must drive themselves back to Broken Hill and find “The Home of the Magpies”.
Which, of course, has to reference a soccer team. The middle of the pitch is where they will find their next clue. This marks the third season in a row where a clue has been located at a soccer pitch.
– Margie & Luke finish the Detour in second.
– Mel & Mike are dancing. Mike does the same cringeworthy WOO-WOOing that Margie did.
This is just sad.
– Kent has a new plan.
KENT: Now children, now you go back.
“Mr. Kaliber didn’t even give us any candy.”
– Kent has ditched the kids as him and Vyxsin go solo.
Vyxsin perfects The Elephant. . .even if it’s the wrong continent.
How the f–k do Mel & Mike keep doing this? A man who has been legally dead twice this round should NOT be in third place kicking everyone else’s ass.
– The judge does not approve of Kent & Vyxsin’s dance.
So Vyxsin switches it up from The Elephant to an Irish River Dance.
KENT: Maybe we’re supposed to do it on top of the sculpture.
But not your beautiful work, Kent! It’ll be ruined!
And why are they doing The Claw too? Are they merely following Zev & Justin’s lead?
– Kent & Vyxsin are done the Detour in 4th. Kisha & Jen finish in 5th.
– After a ten minute routine on top of the mosaic with lots of twists, dips, and turns, Jaime & Cara complete the Detour in 6th.
– Ron gets angry.
RON: What do you need? You tell me–you’re the director. Tell me what I–
CHRISTINA: Lighter coloured rocks.
RON: Lighter coloured? Just tell me. You don’t have to do that. Just be the artistic young master.
I think Christina also needs to help Ron with being the fashion sense young master.
RON: These are the river rocks–
And what we get next is rather amusing.
Ron does the most stereotypical Asian movie dubbed laugh ever. You have to go back to this clip to hear it.
And does Ron seriously have an apple lying on the ground? Is he going to pick it up and eat it later?
Wow. Speaking in Cantonese did absolutely nothing to help them strategize for this task. Unless Ron picking up his hat was vital.
– Justin calls Zev “The Big Dog” after he clues in they are in first place. They get help from a man in a suburb.
I hear if you stick around any longer, he will start telling you stories about his grandkids.
– The man did indeed give them the correct information regarding the Magpies being a football club, and off Zev & Justin go.
– Amanda & Kris dance outside of the mosaic. Jet pulls Cord onto the mosaic. Flight Time orders Big Easy to be on top of it as well.
Jet & Cord are not happy to do this dance.
CORD: I’m a dancing son of a bug.
Okay. Just Jet.
Cord apparently gave Jet some tips.
– Jet & Cord finish the task in seventh. They race each other to the car.
Why can’t Jet & Cord be like this more often rather than repulsive douchebags?
– Gary & Mallory complete the Detour in 8th.
– The Harlem Globetrotters finish it in 9th.
– Ron & Christina’s mosaic is rejected. Amanda & Kris are done Spirit World in 10th, but still have to do Natural World.
– Ron examines their mosaic.
RON: We’ve got this all screwed up. Man, this is really weird. I messed this up for us I think.
CHRISTINA: Oh my gosh. Are you kidding me?
No, he isn’t. Christina is not impressed.
– Commercial break. We resume. Amanda & Kris watch a man spit.
It’s for good luck just like in Zambia.
Except without viewers assuming the man is giving himself HIV.
– Ron complains about his knees then says “we’re almost done” in Cantonese. Nobody else is present.
– Amanda is sucking at blowing and spraying. Her fiance of all people has to teach her how to perfect the technique.
– Ron & Christina have finished re-arranging the mosaic. They observe the dance they must perform.
CHRISTINA: We have to go on top of it.
RON: On top of my work? And ruin it?
“I bet we could’ve sold this for one hundred dollars.”
– Kris tells Amanda to spray it like she is playing a trumpet.
– Ron dances in a more stiff manner than Mel.
RON: This is a guy with back surgery.
Because they lived in Hong Kong for eight years, Ron & Christina adapt the Aborigine dance into some sort of Kung Fu pose.
You can’t see it, but there is a mosaic beneath them.
– The dance is approved. They go to collect their things and Ron sees a problem.
RON: Oh Lord. This is messy.
Christina had everything neatly folded during the task. Ron? Not so much.
In fact, Ron’s stuff is scattered like a dad whose wife just travelled out of town for the weekend for a funeral, and left her husband at home to try and “look after the house”.
– Christina is about to walk past him but stops to see the mess.
CHRISTINA: Oh my goodness. What is this?
“A Detour clue, an apple, two water bottles, a pencil, a ticket for the 1976 World Fair. . .”
RON: This is my stuff from my jacket! I thought I–
CHRISTINA: Goodness! Daddy! We have a freakin’ market here.
“We even still have that Lithuanian pastry you forgot to eat from the last time we played.”
– Amanda & Kris, according to the magic of editing, are shown finishing Natural World seconds later.
– There is no time to sort everything as Christina clusters together all of Ron’s belongings.
I think grabbing Ron’s things can be a task on its own.
CHRISTINA: Let’s go, Daddy. C’mon.
RON: Where’s my hat? You’ve got my hat?!
CHRISTINA: I’ve got it.
RON: I’ve got my hat?!
A hat? A hat?
A kingdom for a hat!
– Amanda & Kris say the Natural World task was faster than Spirit World.
– Zev & Justin are first to the Magpie Football Club. They open the clue.
JUSTIN: Time for a ROOd awakening.
Let’s hear the task from Phil.
PHIL: Teams are about to face a task which will challenge their memory of high school Chemistry.
A periodic table? That might be the least stereotypical task TAR producers have ever designed in an Outback leg. Mendelev wants his royalties!
PHIL: But they’re going to have to do it dressed as kangaroos.
I take that back.
Apparently Phil is okay with running in his underwear, but not in a Roo suit.
Watching Kangaroo Jack probably turned him off the idea.
PHIL: After suiting up as Australia’s national symbol, teams will have to figure out where to go next with nothing in their hands but the periodic table of elements.
Screw the Swiss Army Knife. I can go into any survival situation and get by with the Periodic Table.
Survivorman has been doing it wrong all these years.
PHIL: In this mining town, teams must figure out many streets are named after the elements of the periodic table.
“That isn’t proper footwear! What a boron!”
As The Simpsons would say, you can’t live without Zinc!
– Teams must figure out the two elements highlighted on their Periodic Table are the only two which cross each other in town.
Which appears to be. . .mercury and whatever Bi is.
Personally I think I would have figured out what Hg is if you put this picture on the Periodic Table instead, but that’s just me.
Meanwhile this would have thrown me off track.
Oh right. Bismuth. Who can forget Bismuth.
I love the increased visual aid for viewers who do not understand this task whatsoever.
– Anyways, the intersection is where they will find their next clue.
I guess the clue box prevents teams from going inside.
– Zev & Justin head into the tunnel.
Gear up, boys! It’s the big game! Where’s Rudy?
– Zev & Justin enter the locker room.
JUSTIN: Oh beautiful.
ZEV: What is this?
It looks like the citizens of Broken Hill are prepared for the Roopocalypse.
If Zev had an Express Pass, I think he’d use it.
– Tires screech as Luke is driving. Him and Margie are second to the football club. Zev & Justin finish gearing up.
ZEV: I think we’ve found my Halloween costume.
And he loves it!
But it’s alright, Zev. You can borrow my Tuxedo Mask costume for next year. It may or may not reek of fruity vodka drinks, jell-o shots and Old Milwaukee, though.
– Kent & Vyxsin are third to the pitch.
KENT: Who is in for a roooooooooooooood awakening.
Wow, Kent really embraced that pun.
Why is there an apostrophe in “Roo’d”?
And I swear Kent looks more and more like Marilyn Manson the more stressed he gets.
– Margie & Luke begin running in their costume.
MARGIE: I don’t have very good balance.
You’ll adjust, Margie.
Like a certain animal, dare I say a kangaroo?
YOU JUST GOT ROO’D!
MARGIE: This is ridiculous.
Don’t you mean ROOdiculous? Eh? Eh? Anyone?
lol. Sad Maroogie might be my favourite thing ever. Look how depressed she is. It’s hilarious.
Why does Logan gotta be so rood?
Oh shut up, Nasri. Nobody cared about you until two years ago. Has everyone forgotten that Nasri struggled as a Canadian musician for nearly fifteen years in his solo career? Clearly he is not capable of succeeding on his own.
And if I would’ve made a celebrity rood pun, I would have photoshopped a kangaroo outfit on this guy and call it Ravishing Rick Rood. Get out, Nasri. Get out.
I bet Margie wish she could go back in time and throw at least one of those shoes at me if she could.
– Mel & Mike are fourth to the pitch.
– Margie doesn’t understand the task. Zev & Justin meet them.
ZEV: Margie, you look great.
Zev would hit that kangass if he could. Eh? Eh? Anyone?
Kanga ass! Watch rooself! Show me what’cha working with!
MARGIE: Is this something we can do together?
I love the one man on the sidelines who refuses to look at the kangaroos.
– Justin explains the task to Margie.
Don’t be silly, Margie. Kangaroos don’t wear glasses.
– Justin encourages everyone to jog.
MARGIE: WHOA! WHOA! WHOA!
It seems like Margie is not comfortable with bouncing.
She would be awful at dancing to the Ignition Remix.
– Jaime & Cara see the two teams dressed up as kangaroos. They are fifth to the football club. Jet & Cord are sixth.
JET: Cord, what is Hg and Bi?
CORD: I don’t know, Jet. You watch way more Discovery Channel than I do.
Ha. Get it? Because Discovery Channel is slightly off-topic when it comes to discussing the Periodic Table. Oh, those Cowboys!
– Globetrotters are seventh.
FLIGHT TIME: Have you seen this clue? You’re going to lose your mind. The periodic table.
In all fairness to Big Easy, Hg and Bi are only four letters total compared to five.
– We now present another example of how much I hate the growth of technology on The Amazing Race.
They ask a lady with a smartphone to research the elements. I am surprised none of them knew that Hg is Mercury. If I had to rank the top ten elements people could name off the top of their head, Mercury would be it.
– Kisha & Jen drive by the four kangaroos.
JEN: Holy f—.
Heh. Producers had to censor her on that one.
“Looking for a good time?”
The sex trade has taken an interesting turn in the Outback. Is this what people are into? And why are four of them approaching the same vehicle. Perhaps there is a group discount?
– I guess the lady didn’t know her elements either as she realizes they are the local street names. She gives them directions and our kangaroo duos bounce.
– Kisha & Jen are eighth to the clue box.
JEN: We just gotta get our outfits.
KISHA: Do we grab it off of here?
Oh mai Thai.
“Oh my gravy.”
– Mike informs Kisha the women’s locker room is down the hall.
JEN: My bad!
MIKE: Always trying to get in the men’s locker room.
JEN: Shut up.
– Really cheesy cartoon music plays. Margie complains about the heat. Justin is happy he doesn’t have to carry Zev in his pouch yet.
ZEV: I’m going!
“Americans be stereotyping us once again, mate. This boils my dingo.”
– Kisha & Jen are in the correct locker room with Jaime & Cara. So we have two athletes and cheerleaders, including one who is a nude model.
And the results aren’t as exciting as you’d expect it to be.
JAIME: This is not the type of animal I usually dress up as.
So this is the type of pictorials from PlayBoy that we should expect once spring rolls around.
JAIME: This is a far cry from my little green bunny suit.
Well, that effectively killed any boner Mark & Michael had in TAR 14.
Only a conversation over the phone on a special hotline can get it back up.
– Gary & Mallory are in ninth as they make it to the clue box.
– Jaime & Cara and Kent & Vyxsin team up, but one does all of the work.
KENT: Hg is Mercury, and Bi is. . .Bismuth?
Don’t act as if it is a guess, Kent. You clearly are certain about it.
VYXSIN: Whoa, look at you! Who knows that?
KENT: I got an ‘A’ in Chemistry. I’m glad it finally came in handy.
VYXSIN: Brains and beauty.
CARA: Go Kent!
Now he just needs the brawn.
– Cara sees teams behind her. They have an unlikely leader.
“Charge, ye whippersnappers!”
MIKE: Dad! Slow down you Kangaroo Jack.
Sorry Mike. I’ve already referenced that movie twice in my blog over the years.
MIKE: I think my dad and I need those bouncers. We need them for the rest of the race.
The same guys standing outside from earlier are still there watching a rather bewildering sight.
Big Easy looks awkward as a kangaroo.
KISHA: I never looked so foolish in my whole entire life. *cue Kisha laugh*
KISHA LAUGH COUNT: 4.
This group looks a bit unrooly.
– The camera pans to a particular vehicle on the road.
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAA okay we freakin’ get it, producers.
This brings back awful memories.
– Ron & Christina are tenth to the clue box. Amanda & Kris are behind them.
Ron & Christina are still carrying all of their loose stuff. That’s great.
– A car honks at them. Margie slightly stumbles.
ZEV: They dropped their foot thing.
I hear a kangaroo’s foot brings you bad luck. If only they dressed up as rabbits.
– Margie notices it a few seconds later. Luke wants to keep going but Margie says they have to find it.
Margie is making the same pose as Robb did in Survivor: Thailand when lying about being in the attack zone.
How disappointed is Luke that first place is slipping away?
It’s a Charlie Broown moment.
– Justin laughs hysterically when Zev tells him that Margie & Luke have to go all the way back.
– Zev & Justin have the clue. They must drive to Junction Mine. It was built in 1884 and used to be a silver (Ag) mine.
An abandoned mine is the location of the pit stop?
JUSTIN: You will want to put on other shoes before driving away.
Which poses a problem because Zev is trying to change shoes.
JUSTIN: Here, Zev–
ZEV: I got it, I got it!
– Editors throw in a ridiculous popping sound effect.
“Watch your fingers!”
. . .And tail.
ZEV: Ow! I slammed my tail in the door!
You cursed tail!
– Zev & Justin ask a guy with the most stereotypical Aussie accent I have heard.
I like how Justin isn’t interested in the guy wearing red who is pointing in a different direction.
– They listen to the striped shirt man and drive away.
JUSTIN: Let’s go win something, Zev. And we get to keep it this time.
Man, Phil told them about the prize last time and everything. Brutal.
– Remember in the TAR 24 podcasts with YATNcast how I made fun of the season for being ridiculous with having short rounds that keep teams clustered together?
Well, TAR 18 may be pioneering it for returnee seasons.
– Mel (somehow bends down and) picks up Margie’s shoe cover and hands it to her.
You’re out of the family, Mike. The sinister deaf kid is your old man’s favourite, now!
– In exchange, Margie provides Mel & Mike with the information as to where they need to go.
Margie is like a freakin’ basketball coach right now.
This time they have traded in their monkey suit for a kangaroo costume.
Surprisingly, it’s the man on the left who is the one that hasn’t showered over the past three days.
Zev is yet another victim of Hayley’s headgear wearing abilities.
PHIL: Zev & Justin, I’ll give you the bad news. You look ridiculous. Mayor, what do you think o’ that?
You mean that greased up miner is the mayor of Broken Hill? Is he attempting the approach of doing physical labour to appeal to the working class?
Just because it worked for Vicente Fox doesn’t mean it will win over the residents of Broken Hill.
– The mayor/miner has an observation.
MAYOR (points at JUSTIN): You’re the female.
JUSTIN: As long as we’re in first, I’ll be the female all day long.
Oh, please Justin. You can’t even name ALL FOUR women who star in Sex and the City. And it doesn’t count if you can only get the character’s name right but not the actress, or the other way around.
FIRST PLACE: ZEV & JUSTIN
The TAR 14 fodder continue to suck it.
– Phil informs them they have won a trip to Cancun at the presidential suite in the Fiesta Americana de Condessa Cancun. Hearing Phil try to pronounce that is funny including the word spa.
Cool glasses, bro.
Those binoculars aren’t meant for gnomes!
– Justin says they are definitely in the race for the long haul.
ZEV: I just want to go take a nap.
Justin gets all Italian.
– Globetrotters are second to the clue box as they point it out to everyone. Kisha & Jen are third. Margie & Luke fourth. Mel & Mike fifth. Kent & Vyxsin sixth. Jaime & Cara seventh. Jet & Cord are eighth.
– Big Easy asks a man named Herb where they are going. Who the hell is Herb?
– Kisha & Jen are in the car. Kisha wants Jen to gather their stuff.
JEN: I don’t really exactly know how to do that. I have a kangaroo suit on. I can’t move.
Jen is unable to move?
Is there an invisible Onyx binding her?
– Luke does some weird roll into the driver’s seat as he tosses his shoe in the backseat.
MARGIE: You only need one shoe off to drive. Now go. Go.
One shoe off is fine.
But a second shoe off is definitely not okay.
Luke’s defensive pose is killing me.
– Kent & Vyxsin are having equally fun times.
KENT: Help me take my shoes off, Vyxsin. I need help!
VYXSIN (takes KENT’s shoe off): Good job.
Yes, Kent did a wonderful job of lifting up his own leg. Now you’re on your own, Vyxsin.
SECOND PLACE: FLIGHT TIME & BIG EASY
– Flight Time wants his baby to give him some good news.
PHIL (to MAYOR): Have you seen a kangaroo that size?
The mayor is not amused.
But Big Easy is, and that’s what counts.
– Mallory proposes an alliance to Christina just to beat one team. Ron is more helpful than ever.
RON: I haven’t read the thing. I’ve been trying just to get hydrated.
Oh my god. Those are the exact words someone says when they trying to play Cards Against Humanity after too many drinks.
Ron is drunk right now. Drunk Ron is the best Ron, and he has been acting like it all day. It explains a lot for this round.
a) The random fits of emotion
b) A lack of attention to detail when performing simple tasks like copying a shape on the ground
c) The uncoordinated dance moves
d) Throwing his stuff everywhere on the floor knowing someone else will pick it up.
All four things have happened during this leg. Ron is drunk.
– Amanda & Kris are running as well.
– Christina and Mallory try to get a sense of where they are.
RON: Okay. Let’s read the clues collectively and smart.
CHRISTINA: Daddy, I’ve read it.
RON: We cannot just meander.
Mallory has spent a total of approximately twenty minutes with Ron and is already irritated by him.
Ron doesn’t give a sh-t what the state of Kentucky thinks about him.
MALLORY: They were all running this way.
RON: Uh, we don’t follow the crowd, Mallory! We have to think why they are going that way–
MALLORY: It’s this way. C’mon.
Oh god. Mallory’s puppy-like excitement does not mix with Ron’s cerebral and calculating nature. There is no way Ron and Mallory could ever combine to be a team on the race.
If you thought Mark trying to keep up with Mallory was a disaster, try Ron in Mark’s place.
RON: Why are we following them? They don’t know.
RON: What the hell are you going!
CHRISTINA: Do you know where you are going?
MALLORY: They were all running this way!
RON: What? She’s–she’s hysterical.
Ron’s military background and structured upbringing as well as being a strict parent has likely never encountered anyone like Mallory before, and thinks someone like her is very eccentric and odd.
And Gary is just along for the ride.
– Kisha & Jen are approaching the mine.
The good news for Jen is if she needs to pee she can go in the suit just like the astronauts.
– Jet & Cord pull into the parking lot seconds later.
There is no way athletes like Kisha & Jen are going to lose their lead on foot to a couple of cowboys from Oklahoma.
I take that back. Jen doesn’t have a good history of close finishes to the pit stop.
THIRD PLACE: JET & CORD
FOURTH PLACE: KISHA & JEN
Jet & Cord congratulate Kisha & Jen on their finish. The first bit of sportsmanship we have seen from him in a long time. This is their least douchiest leg ever.
Until they find out a certain piece of information about Kisha, obviously.
– Kisha laughs but it is not quite her trademark laugh. Therefore, it doesn’t count.
– Kris gets directions from a local.
– Now back to two teams that are far more interesting.
Subtitles are required in case you cannot figure out the men and women beneath the suit.
CHRISTINA: If you guys see Mercury: Shout!
RON: Okay, it’s Mercury, huh? What’s the Pb then stand for?
CHRISTINA: It’s not Pb; it’s Bi guys. Mercury and Bismuth.
RON: What’s Bi? Bitonium?
CHRISTINA: No. Bismuth.
Oh my word. Ron, where have you been the past six seasons? And why couldn’t you return for TAR 24?
I bet all of Christina’s periodic table knowledge came from her future husband.
NOTE: You know what is funny about Ron thinking one of the elements was Pb? That’s the element Lead. Lead, which happens to be the exact opposite position that Ron & Christina are in at the moment.
– I wonder how many times the words Mercury and Bismuth have been uttered in the past fifteen minutes. This is getting extreme.
It’s the two elements
Few of these teams are highly competitive
Only Ron is classy and elegant
Christina turns her back on Ron so she can focus on the clue. They are at the same corner where Amanda & Kris were minutes earlier (Galena and Quarry if that matters to you).
CHRISTINA: Okay. Let’s hurry. We can’t hurry in the wrong direction.
RON (to MALLORY): Don’t shout because your voice carries.
He says this to Mallory directly in front of her father. Oh god. This is getting better and better.
CHRISTINA: Okay, we’re going the wrong way.
RON: Ah geez.
Ron took that shockingly well.
Is that a Ford vehicle in the background?
– Commercial break. We resume.
– Christina cusses out her dad saying she just needs to know what street they are on.
CHRISTINA: We can’t just guess guys!
MALLORY: Left, right?
Thank you for your confusing as hell contribution, Mallory.
– Kris tries to motivate Amanda. They see two teams ahead.
– Mallory sees the clue box.
MALLORY (super high pitched puppy voice or like some sort of baby owl): Clue! Clue!
Pb the way, Sparky!
– Ron & Christina and Gary & Mallory read the clue.
Which Ron skips out on doing once again.
MALLORY: Guys! Our map says where this is!
Which is exactly what she needs. Being one minute ahead of last place with an Express Pass in hand then getting lost would be an embarrassing way to go out.
– Ron is in the driver’s seat but needs Christina to take off his shoe.
Which nearly sends Christina flying back on her butt, but instead makes her the first kangaroo back catcher in baseball history.
– Ron & Christina discuss what to do.
CHRISTINA: They said perfect directions. Follow them.
RON: Mallory. She doesn’t know where it is.
You may need to take a chance with Amanda & Kris right there. The camera operator shows Amanda & Kris grabbing the clue while an unknown vehicle is driving away (presumably Ron & Christina’s).
MALLORY: Quick, quick! Dad! We’ve got to book it! BOOK IT BOOK IT BOOK IT!
Does. . .Gary need to book it?
CHRISTINA: Gary and Mallory are nice people. They just don’t know where they are going.
RON: I think we’re going to get lost again. She’s uh very impulsive.
**Cut to Mallory.**
Some people put their fingers into their armpits and then sniff them when stressed. Mallory on the other hand shoves pieces of paper into her mouth.
– Ron & Christina deviate from Gary & Mallory.
Christina’s hair did not cooperate with the costume. Ron doesn’t have to worry about having the same problem.
FIFTH PLACE: MARGIE & LUKE
– Extreme Makeover sentimental music plays as Mel & Mike check in.
SIXTH PLACE: MEL & MIKE
Not only are they still alive in the race, but Mel is still alive period.
MIKE: I’m really proud of us because my dad has been such a trooper, and for him to come out here at seventy and muscle it out. Dad, you’re my hero.
MEL: Oh, Mikey!
Since when did they turn Italian?
– Amanda & Kris ask for directions. Ron & Christina are on the wrong road.
Tears are fast approaching.
– Kent decides to be a showoff.
He gets more air than a Harlem Globetrotter.
Even on the mat he can’t stop bouncing.
SEVENTH PLACE: KENT & VYXSIN
Vyxsin shoves Kent after hearing their placement.
Ron & Christina aren’t the only TAR 12 team that can deliver.
EIGHTH PLACE: JAIME & CARA
PHIL: Best looking kangaroos to roll into town.
JAIME & CARA: Thank you.
PHIL: Or should I say HOP into town?
Jaime & Cara are flattered.
That’s what happens when Phil has all day at the pit stop and only a select few magazines at his disposal. He may or may not have busted a kiwi. New Zealanders are known for their lack of self-respect.
Phil has a preference for redheads, but clearly his dad prefers blondes.
– Gary sees the mine. Mallory starts chanting like an opera singer.
The opera house is on the other side of the country, Mallory.
– Mallory runs onto the mat.
Two seasons in a row and Phil has yet to figure out what to make of Mallory.
MALLORY (English accent): I’m so hoppy to be here.
PHIL: Gary & Mallory. . .
(Classic TAR horror soundtrack plays.)
You’re scaring the kids, Mallory.
NINTH PLACE: GARY & MALLORY
You could put the kangaroo nose in Mallory’s mouth and I bet she wouldn’t notice.
– Christina asks for directions. It’s a turn to the right. Amanda & Kris also see the mine. Both teams are supposedly out of their vehicles and running to the mat.
– Ron & Christina hit the mat.
RON: Give us good news, Bill.
“You are team number–wait?”
“Did this f-cker just call me Bill?”
PHIL: Ron, did you just call me Bill?
“What? Me? No. That was the sound guy. Hey, why did you call him Bill, Steve?”
“My name is Craig, asshole!”
RON: No, no. Phil. Phil.
Wow. Ron really needs to sober up by the next leg.
PHIL: You’re definitely Ron, though.
RON: I’m definitely Ron.
PHIL: And you’re definitely Christina, is that correct?
“And I’m definitely going to kick you in the shin the second the camera turns off, correct?
TENTH PLACE: RON & CHRISTINA
– Christina says they have stuff to figure out between the two of them.
RON: Sometimes in the heat of the moment it’s still difficult for me to not get too domineering.
Man. A second-to-last place finish in a disastrous second round, and they talk about how they need to fix Ron’s attitude in future rounds?
This really is a carbon copy of the second round of TAR 12. If the pattern holds up, they will start kicking ass for the rest of the season.
LAST PLACE: Amanda & Kris.
– They are eliminated, and nobody cared.
KRIS: We essentially won the lottery twice. It is the opportunity of a lifetime twice. I would do it over again in a heartbeat.
And people still won’t remember who the f–k you two are.
Let’s find people more interesting who can talk about Amanda & Kris’ exit.
Old school legacy
New school fools
Cast o’ TAR 18 keep it jumpin’ like kangaroos
Skew it on Ken and Barbie
It’s like they were trying to lose
They weren’t supposed to play but Bertram said
“They’re Luke’s enemies so goddammit I’m going to change the rules.”
Next Time on TAR: Teams are steeped in Japanese tradition. And Jaime & Cara suffer a game-changing setback.
FLIGHT TIME.BIG EASY 2.2
Rank the Legs
1) Manly, Australia -> Broken Hill, Australia
Ron & Christina’s interactions with everyone else and Mel nearly dying made this round hilarious.
The kangaroo outfit entertained producers way too much. I didn’t find it that funny.
Bunching all eleven teams at the Detour was dumb. Was there any degree of separation between the teams?
The clue being in the form of a periodic table and referring to street names was neat. It was creative.
Too many stupid cartoon sound effects.
Amanda & Kris going home was 2nd best case scenario. I never thought they could be more dull than they were the first time. I have nothing else to add.
It truly was a huge stroke of luck for producers that Amanda & Kris were the ones to receive the Automatic U-Turn. Considering how clustered the teams were in this round, it was nearly impossible for anyone to survive this scenario.
I think calling it a Kangaroo Court was completely accurate. Amanda & Kris essentially took one for the team, because if anyone else received the Automatic U-Turn, fans would have been extremely upset.
2) Palm Springs, California, US -> Manly, Australia
We go from the TAR 17 premiere. . .to this. -_-
It is one thing to cast a bunch of teams from an unpopular season and your one-dimensional homophobic fan favourites thinking they will deliver. However, it is another thing if they all pretty much fall flat and you rely on the other five teams to be interesting for the audience right out of the gate. It has been a long time since so many characters could be written off after one episode.
Furthermore, it was a stupid decision by producers to essentially model this round after the disastrous TAR 15 season premiere. A Starting Line task which gobbles up more than a third of the airtime? Hitting a team with such a tough penalty in the second round that they may as well give up? Not eliminating anybody in the season premiere just because producers were too scare to lose any of their favourites in an upset heading into the race?
I don’t get it. The Express Pass, while a twist which needs to go away badly, is understandable to present. Just because a minor twist didn’t work the first time is not enough evidence it will fall equally hard in a second appearance. One could argue the Express Pass has as much unfinished business as the other contestants.
Let’s talk about the tasks. The paper planes task was neat in concept. I love how it ended up being an anti-reward where eight teams were suddenly in an 8-way tie for last because of some dark comedy in the form of a heart attack taking place on their plane.
It is a shame the dash to the airport did not matter because the paper planes task determined everything. This is also the reason why none of the teams were shown interacting with each other. All of that valuable airtime was assigned to the paper planes, tragically.
With all eleven teams so close together in Sydney, there appeared to be a tiny time gap in terms of when everyone finished the round (except for Jet & Cord). Even the top three teams on the “second” plane saw all of the other teams entering Oceanworld while solving the Roadblock, and likely had only a fifteen to twenty minute lead on them at most. Meanwhile the other seven teams were neck-and-neck due to mass alliances and not having a chance to separate themselves from the pack.
I personally loved the Roadblock. They took the shark tank Roadblock from TAR 4 (Reichen was much more afraid than Jon was!) and supersized it with a word puzzle as well as a secondary location to find. Sure, the location seemed to be very close by, but eh, it was a valiant effort.
The skiff task was alright. I wish it wasn’t so close to Oceanworld, though. It made for an easy round of navigation for teams.
This round showcased how none of the teams have really changed. Alliances were predictable, Jet & Cord said everybody was following them, Kent & Vyxsin are the most flustered team, Kisha & Jen still can’t swim, Mallory was ridiculously upbeat, and Zev & Justin laugh at everyone else’s personalities. Unfortunately there wasn’t that comedic moment which never really stuck out.
I feel like I am forgetting somebody. Does anyone know who?
Rank the Teams
1) Amanda & Kris
Holy shit they are boring. My parents and my sister forgot who they were less than one week after their elimination for a second time. Enough said. Well, other than the fact that producers were responsible for screwing them over, but whatever.
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.
Because of how long this list has become, I only show the relevant section where the eliminated team from this episode has fallen amongst the ranks of what TAR history has to offer.
Therefore their average is 8.2.
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
11th Amanda & Kris 6.5 TAR 18 Automatic U-Turned.
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
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
6 legs (lol) Amanda & Kris 5.17 U-Turned twice TAR 14 + 18
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.