No elimination this week as #Krodie stays hot.
April 20, 2016 by Simon Pollock in Opinion with 0 comments
Katie: Okay, let’s do it Dubai.
Zach and Rachel are in the lead, and nobody is excited about it. Korey and Tyler are in last place, and the world is enraged. Blodie is dead. The Alabama family is somehow still alive. Now they’re headed to the one place Cole fears most: the Middle East.
Simon: Yeah, about that. I need to get something off my chest. [Walks solemnly to lectern.]
Friends, Ultiworld readers, Amazing Race fans, and distinguished guests, it’s not yet been two weeks since a brilliant flame in our lives was abruptly and unceremoniously snuffed out. We are gathered here today to remember and celebrate not just the beauty of #BLODIE itself, but everything –nope, wasting my time. Check out Brodie Smith, YouTube Frisbee Trick Shot Star, wearing what his best friend dubbed a Space Hat.
Katie: The #BLODIE romance was way overplayed. All they did was awkwardly hug goodbye. I don’t think that was our generation’s Romeo and Juliet love tale.
Daniel: Well this promises to be an enthralling episode. Last week was absolutely nuts. Our boys fell off the pace a bit for the first time. Will they be able to bounce back? How will Brodie handle the loss of Blair? So many questions that I need answered.
Since the balance of power was finally upset last week, I’ll bring back my first and last place predictions this week. There are only six teams left at this point and a more clear power ranking is beginning to emerge. For my money, Cole and Sheri are the obvious weakest team remaining. Cole seems pretty useless and Sheri – for all of her chutzpah and want to – doesn’t really have the physical ability to keep handling all of these challenges. I think this is their final week in the race. Sorry, Katie.
As for a winner, I’m going to go with the dark horse pick of Dana and Matt. This pick makes me hate myself a bit, but not as much as I hate Dana. Last week they showed their prowess in the dance competition and their confidence is building. It may just be kind editing, but Dana seems to want to murder Matt less as well. Our (least) favorite dancing couple seem to be finding their groove and I could easily see them turning that into a first place finish this week.
Simon: The arrival in Dubai and scenes on the highway are some of the first that don’t involve #TeamKrodie jockeying for the lead. I’m confused. They’re in limbo between teams that know how to follow directions and Sheri, who’s probably looking her Starbucks instead of the correct exit.
Patrick: Burnie enjoys getting to say “kilometers” a little bit too much.
Simon: Burnie and Ashley call for the mid-detour switch, just in time for her to start dry-heaving in the car. We haven’t talked about this much yet, but what the flip is the diet of a TAR contestant?
Daniel: That’s something I’ve wondered about as well. And what is the sleeping situation? Do contestants get put up in nice hotels? Everyone generally seems fairly well rested in spite of having to leave super early to catch flights and then putting themselves through physically exhausting challenges. This is when it hits me that I would be a truly horrendous TAR contestant.
And right on cue, the first challenge this week is racing camels on bikes on the Arabian Desert.
Simon: In what might physically be the most exhausting detour, Kurt immediately sets Brodie up to draft him. We’re using to seeing Kurt take over the point and do it all himself, but this is both leading and actively helping at the same time. That shit is plain hard. Sidenote: If we get a shot of a camel spitting on Dana while she drags it over a dune, I will be very, very pleased. That won’t happen because of the camel muzzle, but a boy can dream.
Daniel: “Babe, stop acting like you’re not struggling. It’s annoying. You’re wearing a FREAKING FLANNEL in the desert.” – Dana, who is wearing all black and pants in the desert.
Simon: I hope they make Dana chew qat until she actually loses all sense of direction.
Daniel: In a photo finish our boys beat the camels first try, which is the single most impressive thing in The Race so far. I know they’re athletes, but half of the other teams that tried this competition gave up after one try and Korey and Tyler and Sheri and Cole were not close to winning before the second attempt head start. #TeamKrodie jumps out to where they belong – first place.
Daniel: Okay, what would happen if someone got attacked by a shark in this challenge? TAR’s insurance premiums must be astronomical.
Patrick: That’s just not really what a puzzle is, right?
Simon: BRODIE, INDENTION IS NOT-ah…excuse me. Somebody give him back the space helmet.
Katie: Of course he’s wearing compression shorts under the gold panties. Note: Brodie has done 100% of the challenges that involve swimming and shirtlessness.
Daniel: Brodie is unable to complete the weird letter water puzzle and our boys use their press pass to maintain first place. I’m still undecided if that was the right choice or not, but it’s also hard to know how big of a lead they had in the first place. The more I see other teams struggle with it though, it seems like it was a fair decision.
“I kinda felt like I might start to melt down, because I am that kind of person.” Really, Dana? You don’t say.
Simon: There’s a weird calculus involved in trying to watch this show and objectively know which teams are exactly all-around talented, mostly because when teams cover long distances, the TAR editing teams takes over to build drama instead of showing us in real time how long it takes to drive from the airport the camel track. (That’s fine, because who the heck actually wants to watch teams drive the highways of the UAE?) But you have to figure one of the biggest challenges of being on this show is simply following directions and actively paying attention. That’s how we know that Sheri and Cole are here by the grace of the race only. Cole’s inability to give directions is a death sentence for his generation.
Daniel: Our boys take first! And Brodie wins a trip that he can take Blair on! Romantics everywhere, rejoice.
Simon: The meltdown we’ve all been anxiously awaiting started with three magical words.
Simon: I need Tiina right now. Why, oh why, are Sheri and Cole allowed to go forward? I understand the speedbump next episode and everything, but just…fuck. I wish Dana and Matt and Sheri and Cole had both gotten the boot. Has there been a double elimination episode before?
Daniel: You all know how I feel about the random cut/not cut decisions. I’m glad you’re starting to see it my way. What I would like to know though is how frequently do couples like Dana and Matt come around? They genuinely seem to hate each other at times and it’s amazing. You may want them gone, Simon, but I selfishly want them around for the rest of the show. It’s only going to get more intense for them as the season goes on.
Daniel: Okay, now it’s time for this week’s winners and losers. My winner this week is Burnie. I’ll admit I was a bit prejudice in my assessment of him. His background and attire kinda screamed geek, but he crushed they bike race and actually pulled off that ridiculous bathing suit everyone had to wear, am I right, ladies? I think all of America was #FeelingTheBurn this week.
And instead of a loser this week, I’m picking a second winner – Google Maps. Hot damn, if we learned anything this episode it’s that people today are completely incapable of reading old fashioned directions and reading maps. Remember when MapQuest was a thing before we all had smart phones and how incredibly convenient it was? That was just a few years ago and pretty much all of the teams were unable to follow directions of that nature without making a couple of mistakes. Think about how different this episode would have been if all the teams had GPS. Dana and Matt don’t even get in that fight. The world is completely different because of you, Google Maps. Thank you.
Simon: MapQuest, we hardly knew ye. I just poured one out for whoever rubbed crisco over Burnie’s stomach and told him to clench when he walked into the frame. Somebody send that TAR crewmember a bottle of liquor and a framed This Week’s Winner certificate from me.
Also, as much as I hate her guts, shoutout to Dana for wearing that golden excuse for a top all the way through those wardrobe malfunctions. She almost had me liking her there.
Katie: I love #TeamAlabama so much. But also, WHAT THE FUCK HOW ARE THEY NOT OUT. … does this show last forever??
Patrick: Let’s just be thankful they were able to find their way back to the race at all after appearing to be just straight up lost out in the desert. For a second there it looked like the show was going to take a really dark turn. It’s not inconceivable to me that they could end up going 400 miles in the wrong direction and get embroiled in the Yemeni Civil War. Add “Cole and Sherri stumble into a warzone” to my TAR wishlist.
Katie: I’m going to pinch hit with this week’s power rankings:
Contestants in their swimwear, ranked. Because if I do it, it feels slightly less sexist.
Brodie. Ugh I hate giving him the top spot when he so obviously struggled with the “puzzle,” but in this contest, brawn beats brains.
Matt. We forget that they’re professional dancers because of our blinding hatred for their relationship, but Matt looked great.
Kurt. Second in swimwear, first in our hearts.
Dana. Props again for overcoming a nip slip on national TV. You survived every woman’s swimming nightmare.
Ashley. Apparently running online forums for gamers is a much better workout than I thought. Damn.
Cole. Whatever he’s 19. “Staying in shape” just means skipping pizza one night a week.
Burnie. Burnie stepped out of the race and into a 1970s erotica film. He and Ashley are taking that gold swim set home with them for sure.
Sheri. Sheri is so damn game for ANYTHING, and that includes squeezing into a gold lame bikini that most women wouldn’t wear, let alone mothers in their forties. And she didn’t look half bad.
Everyone squeezed into their ridiculous swimsuits… except Rachel, who wore this:
I can’t tell if she’s a genius for layering or just a wet blanket. Either way, it’s time to suck it up and suck it in, Rachel. TAR is only getting harder from here.