Alison and Donny are here because CBS is infested with nitwits who don't know the difference between good and bad shows, or don't understand that it might be nice to occasionally try to make the latter more like the former, rather than the other way around. They're also a Young Dating Couple, and you may remember her from her performance as the most obnoxious thing about Big Brother 4, which is remarkable, considering that there was practically no one in that entire season who didn't richly deserve a sound thrashing with a cricket bat. She's generally mean to Donny, and she's already humiliated him by dicking around with other guys on television, but here they are anyway, because what the hell? This show only won an Emmy. Why wouldn't you look for ways to marry it to the biggest piece of cheap-ass, bottom-feeding crap CBS has in its entire lineup? I mean, people who like well-made shows aren't a desirable demographic. You can't advertise to them. They don't buy soda and cars and sneakers and stuff. What you have to do in order to make money is push the envelope on voyeuristic, emotionally vacant train wrecks, because you know what the people who like that stuff are, television-wise? They are underserved. They are neglected. There should be a show for them! There should be something for them to watch! Sigh.
Donny says that they "fight a lot" and "break up a lot," and he's not sure why they're still together.
The teams stroll across the sand as Phil gives his traditional speech in which he says that we'll have to see which team has the combination of "brains, brawn, and teamwork" necessary to win. And as always, it's hard for me to believe those words apply to anyone involved. Back on the boat, Phil says that these questions await us as we get ready to start...The Amazing Race. Aw, I think I just teared up a little.
We glide over to find our teams at the end of the Santa Monica Pier, all lined up in their traditional cantaloupe shape, like they're a college a cappella group preparing to sing "Is She Really Going Out With Him?" Phil lectures the teams that of the thirteen legs, there will be eight elimination points. He explains about how they have to pay for everything but plane tickets with their own money, and adds that even in the non-elimination legs, you won't want to be last, because it will make your life difficult in a way that he's not going to specify just yet. Phil tells them that their first clue is waiting with their luggage up the pier a bit, and when he gives the word, they can go. They'll get their clues and then head for one of the marked cars waiting in the parking lot. He mentions the million-dollar prize again, and they all clap, like, "Yay, money!" I think they forgot all about the money. And now for Phil's traditional sendoff: "The world is waiting for you. Good luck. Travel safe." He raises his arm and gives a massive eyebrow pop, which I am taking as a shout-out. "GO!"