Oh my oh my. How do I even begin to write a recap again after such a nice long holiday weekend? I guess I’ll start one keystroke at a time. Luckily, The Amazing Race will make it somewhat easy for me because Sunday night’s episode was so damn exciting (ending notwithstanding). I mean, everything kept changing — people in the front wound up in the back and then at the front again and then in the back. It was all an amazing mess. Plus, our old friend The Yield popped up for the first time this season. But was it worth it? Is it ever?
Find out after the jump!This week’s show began with teams learning they’d have to fly from Kiev to Morocco where they’d then have to find an antiques shop in the Kasbah district and choose a necklace — one of which was a good luck charm that would yield many rewards at the Pit Stop! It sounded cool and all, but whither the cumbersome Travelocity roaming gnome? I’ve become very attached to my product placement. I need it back!
Anyway, the models left first without incident, and on their heels, as always, were the beauty queens, who were extremely excited about their upcoming adventures. “I wrote a paper in college on Morocco!” Dustin said happily, perhaps assuming that the entire rest of the leg would focus around historical facts and figures.
Nevertheless, the models had a lead on the girls, but they struggled as they searched for the airport. I was shocked they didn’t run into the Cho Brothers, still on the side of the road asking for directions on how to get home to the United States.
Kimberob emerged from the Pit Stop third, and Rob told us, “Sometimes I need to really breathe and calm down.” Other things he could work on: not being an idiot every second of the day.
Well, at the airport, the BQs booked a connection to Casablanca through Milan, but it was ever so tight. So tight that the they were treated to the Slo-Mo of DOOM. Methinks they won’t make their connecting flight! Tyler and James, meanwhile, arrived second at the airport (much to their chagrin) and discovered there were no more seats from Milan to Casablanca. This meant they’d have to find other means to get to Morocco (Casablanca wasn’t even the final destination. I forget the name of the city they were headed to — hopefully it wasn’t the same dusty village that screwed over Andre and Damon on season three).
Anyway, adding onto all the flight chaos were Kimberob who soon showed up and tried to figure out what sort of flights they’d be looking for. They also tried to work the art of subterfuge with the beauty queens as Rob lied and said they managed to book a flight that was arriving in Morocco in the afternoon. Amazingly, the girls fell for this trick — and to think, Rob didn’t even have Godwin’s fake cell phone!
Rob then told us, “The blondes race with a certain amount of arrogance.” Yes, but at least they’re not burdened with debilitating stupidity.
“So wait — there’s a cure for bed head?”
The Great Kimberob Punk’ng of 2006 didn’t last long, however, as Rob eventually revealed that it was all a joke. Laughs were had by all, and then it was off to more airport intrigue. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t totally confused by the plans. I needed an airport diagram badly. The long and the short of it was that the blondies were heading to Casablanca via Milan whereas everyone else (including Lyn/Lyn who had surfaced amidst all this) was heading there via Paris. All teams needed to catch a 10:55 flight.
Well, the girls left first for Milan, and when they arrived, they raced to make their connection, but alas. They had missed it. “I said the flight is closed!” a testy ticketing agent told them. Grrowl! We knew the girls were screwed, but they couldn’t have been that screwed. Otherwise this would have certainly merited a commercial break, which we did not get.
As for the other teams, Kimberob and the junkie models flew off to Casablanca where they waited around for their 10:55 flight, letting their brains continue to atrophy. Meanwhile Karlyn and Lyn, who had a later flight to Casablanca, actually made the most of their down time and studied maps. What a novel idea! Eventually, the moms met up with the models and Kimberob, causing Rob to reflect about how “hardcore” this all was. But where were the Beauty Queens. No one had seen them!
Well, we don’t know how they did it, but somehow, Dustin and Kandice magically appeared in Casablanca, and even better, they nabbed seats on the flight before anyone else. When the other teams sauntered onto the plane, they were devastated to see the girls. “I was literally crushed,” Rob said. “I was hoping the way they played the game would be their fatal mistake.” He then explained how his only hope was that the girls had been protein deprived on their layover, leading to sudden brain shrinkage.
Anyway, after all the airport intrigue was over, Phil treated us to a nifty diagram, and then it was off to Morocco where everyone continued to hate on the blondes. Of course, the more everyone hated them, the more I liked them. Amusingly, as everyone emerged from the airport terminal, Dustin and Kandice managed to speed off, causing Tyler to complain, “The blondes tried to sneak out of the airport before everybody.” Well, what else were they supposed to do? Just hang out and wait? Sounds like somebody got to used to the Chos.
Well, Kimberob and the Models (two teams whose alliance should have some awful nickname) happily hitched their cart onto the beauty queens’ horse as they followed the girls to the next destination. Sadly, Dustin and Kandice had no idea where they were going; so this makeshift caravan came to a complete halt as the women asked for directions. Meanwhile, since ‘Bama had already studied their map, they knew exactly what they were supposed to do, and the two mothers simply plowed past the other teams without hesitation. They arrived at the antiques shops, chose a pendant, and learned that they must now travel to a Moroccan studio backlot where such films as Cleopatra and Galdiator were filmed. Oh, and one more thing: YIELD AHEAD. The Yield always excites me for the drama it brews up, but for once I’d like it to not be on a nonelimination leg. I mean, what’s the point? I guess the producers just like to make teams angry and have that pass over into future episodes. This time I was hoping Bertram Van Munster would buck the trend and add some real consequences to this underutilized twist.
Over at the caravan of idiocy, the locals had emerged from wherever to instill fear into the hearts of the whiteys. Everyone hopped back into their cars as a small mob descended on the scene, and while Dustin and Kandice panicked at first, they soon relented. “I think they’re harmless,” Dustin said, as if the people were a pack of roving kittens. The girls then abducted some random dude to be their guide, commenting, “It feels weird in the middle of the night taking a kid.” Yes, that’s because in most places, it’s illegal.
Good to see that everyone’s having a blast.
Anyway, the teams all then made their way to the antiques shop, amusingly assuming that ‘Bama was following somewhere in the back. Even better was that once the teams actually showed up, when they saw that one necklace had already been taken, they simply assumed again that the blondes had taken it. Little did Kimberob and the models realize that Dustin and Kandice had actually gone to the wrong place, thanks to their unhappy, captive local. This all spelled doom and gloom for the girls. With a yield ahead and three teams that hated them, they knew they’d be stuck in last place. Or would they?
Sure enough, ‘Bama arrived at the movie studio first, only to discover that it didn’t open until the next morning. Dammit. The one time that they’re in first place…
The other teams soon showed up as well, and when they discovered that ‘Bama had beaten them there, they were all in shock. “I can’t believe that ‘Bama beat us!” Tyler said, adding, “Uncool ugly people aren’t supposed to excel!”
Well, the next morning, all four teams lined up at the gates of the studio, and when the time came, they bolted towards the Yield. Tyler and James reached it first, but chose not to exercise it. Surprisingly enough, Kimberob also passed up this opportunity to yield the beauty queens, but that might have been because they simply didn’t know what the word “Yield” meant. Dustin and Kandice, however, happily used the Yield on poor Lyn/Lyn, who didn’t even seem to try to run for it. Man, from first to last. Sucks for them.
Anyway, after the Yield, teams encountered this week’s Roadblock (as well as a prolonged view of the PhilPackage™). In this challenge, teammates had to “experience thrills and chills of being a gladiator” (without all that gooey death stuff). Basically, they had to race around the stadium in a chariot, pulling down two flags matching their horse color along the way.
I immediately began praying that Rob would fall out of his chariot (and we knew someone would fall because it’d been shown nonstop on the previews all week long). Unfortunately, someone did take a spill, but it was a trained professional, simply trying to up the realism of the moment. And the answer is yes, CBS is quite shady for bamboozling us out of some real injury drama.
At one point, Dustin told us, “I felt like a legitimate gladiator!” Hmm. Maybe she’s ready to square off against an angry lion? Yay blood!
Give Dustin your tired, your hungry, your poor. Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.
Meanwhile, on the sidelines, Karlyn grumbled incessantly about the Yield while Kimberly cheered on her boy, saying, “Get a flag, babe! Get a flag!” I’m shocked he didn’t yell out from the chariot, “BABE! I’M TRYING TO!!! JUST LET ME THINK, BABE!!!!”
Truth was that grabbing the flags was incredibly easy — for everyone but James, that is. He missed, causing Tyler to smile with haughty disapproval. Dustin and Rob, on the other hand, finished the task, and as the beauty queens left, Karlyn flicked them off. It was pretty rude and Michael Vick-ish, but luckily Lyn, the more sensible of the two, reprimanded her little sidekick. Surely such boorish behavior would not be tolerated, especially anything associated with Phil Keoghan!
Anyway, the teams learned they had to now travel to a café in a place called Idelsson, which had me hopeful that we’d get an eating challenge — something we’ve seen very little of this season. Before we could figure out what mysteries lurked in this café, however, our teams had to first get there — a task that proved entirely too difficult for Kimberob who once again wound up with car troubles. The two had a flat tire, and for a while, the beauty queens debated whether or not to inform their rivals of this problem. Normally, I’d say that was awful of them, but since this was Kimberob, I loved it.
Well, soon Rob and Kimberly pulled over (and the beauty queens did tell them they had a flat), but things went from bad to worse for the automotively-impaired team. Not only did they have a flat, but there appeared to be no jack in the car either. I began to cackle triumphantly in my seat, but sadly, Rob eventually found said missing jack. Of course, just because he found it didn’t mean he could use it. The jack was stuck, causing even more cursing and frustration. PERFECT. And did I mention that this delay allowed ‘Bama to surpass them? That’s right, the team that was in butt-last place had passed Kimberob. DOUBLE PERFECT.
Of course, this setback was nothing a commercial break couldn’t fix, and when we returned, some friendly locals (like the harmless ones from the night prior) decided to pull over and lend a hand. Meanwhile, over at the cafe, the first teams arrived and found the next Detour: Throw It or Grind It. In “Throw It,” teams had to findi a marked pottery shop, use a wheel and throw two pots (as in, make two pots). In “Grind It,” teams had to find a horse ranch, use an olive mill, grind 77 pounds of olives, and then fill two pressing sleeves with the resultant tapenade-ish goo. The catch with this Detour was that each option only had three work stations, which meant first come, first serve was more important than ever.
A second PhilPackage™ in one episode? My my!
Well, the beauty queens decided to grind it, and surprisingly, James and Tyler opted to indulge their more feminine side by choosing the pottery option. They quickly changed their minds, however, when they discovered that throwing pots meant they were actually making pottery, not arbitrarily throwing two pots at a wall. Idiots (of course, it’s been so long since I’ve done anything pottery related that I’m sure I probably would have made the same mistake).
Anyway, ‘Bama also decided to do Grind It, which meant that all three work stations would be filled once they arrived at the horse ranch. That was more bad news for Kimberob, who had finally fixed their tire, arrived at the Detour, and were now heading off to grind some olives. That’s right: they’d have to wait. EXCELLENT. Best leg ever!
But wait! Dustin and Kandice somehow got lost en route to the horse farm, which meant that as the models and ‘Bama toiled with the olives, there was still one last open work statoin. Who would get it? Kimberob or the Beauty Queens? Please let it be Dustin and Kandice. Please let it be Dustin and Kandice.
It was Kimberob.
Yes, Kimberly and Rob managed to sneak back into third place, and in some divine cosmic justice, the beauty queens wound up stuck in last, two spots behind the team they had Yielded earlier. This could not be good. Luckily for them, I had a feeling tonight would be non-elimination, simply because next week isn’t the finale, which means we should still have four teams around. But there’s no fun in overanalyzing. You never know what’ll happen.
Anyway, the junkie models finished the Detour first, which meant Dustin and Kandice could begin crushing their olives. Next destination for the boys: the Pit Stop. Yes, teams now had to find a marked boulder on the side of the road, drive into the desert, park their cars, and run to Phil, who was standing by a nomadic encampment. Yes, ladies and gentlemen. Behold the Philmad™.
Looks like somebody pitched a tent.
As the guys trotted off, poor Rob lamented the lack of fresh bread to go with his homemade olive spread. An avid olive fan myself, I empathized with his plight for the first time ever, but then I laughed because I knew he was miserable all the same. I was just sad Rob didn’t yell, “Babe, I need some fresh bread! FOCACCIA, BABE! JUST GET ME FOCACCIA!!!!”
Bread be damned. Kimberob finished without a problem (although they still trailed the models and ‘Bama, who had also completed the task amidst all this). This meant that only the Beauty Queens were left at the Detour. Meanwhile, up ahead, Tyler and James found the marked stone and pulled into the parking lot first. Dammit. They soon went running towards Phil, but wait a second! They forgot their lucky pendant! As the two guys turned around, ‘Bama just happened to pull in and go running towards Phil. That’s right people, WE HAD A FOOT RACE!!!! It would have been a miracle if the mothers could out run the boys, but they did have a considerable lead. Hurry! Hurry! This was so damn exciting, I couldn’t even tell you. So what if both teams were safe. I just wanted the single moms to beat out those cocky models.
Unfortunately, the women were simply not fast enough. Tyler and James eventually eclipsed them and took first place. Even worse, their pendant was the “lucky” one, which meant they won a mysterious prize: a Treo with one year’s worth of service. Oh. Okay. That’s cool, I guess. I’m just glad the guys didn’t win some extravagant prize like two Ferraris or anything ridiculous like that.
Well, Lyn and Karlyn arrived second, which was still a major improvement for them (then again, being two from the bottom isn’t anything new to them either). As for Kimberly and Rob, they were lost in Morocco, trying to find the Pit Stop. I figured this was just misdirection, especially when we then saw Dustin and Kandice immediately finish up the Detour and hit the road. Nevertheless, I’m a sucker for crafty editing, and I soon couldn’t help but think that maybe the beauty queens might catch up. Making the situation even more exciting was that when Kimberob did eventually show up at the parking area, they wandered off in the wrong direction, which had me thinking that a) the Beauty Queens might sneak in, or b) we might be in store for a much more satisfying version of Gerry (small movie. Only watch it if you’re stoned).
Anyway, Dustin and Kandice did pull into the parking lot, but not soon enough. Rob and Kimberly got their bearings and checked in third. That meant the girls were stuck with last place, but guess what? It was non-elimination! Who would have thunk it? Once again, the Yield employed unnecessarily. Although, with this whole “Marked for Elimination” twist, I can’t say that a Yield on a non-elimination leg is totally worthless.
What did you think about this episode? Will the queens be able to overcome this setback? Who goes home next? Will the karma boomerang strike again?