Amazing Race

Episode Report Card
M. Giant: B- | Grade It Now!
Three Strikes and You're out (And It's About Time Somebody Was)

Ernie is backed into the starting block of the slalom course. A flagman waves the green, the driver mutters, "Go," and Ernie floors it while a timer in the corner of the screen ticks off the tenths of seconds. Ernie swings the wheel hard, making wider turns than he should between the cones and burning up precious time. After passing the cones, the driver directs him to a box painted on the asphalt at the end of the course where he needs to stop -- without hitting the car-shaped balloon positioned right in front of it, like it's high-speed parallel parking. Ernie manages that, but it took him 16.9 seconds, so the flagman gives a thumbs-down and the driver says, "Again. Too slow." Ernie backs up to try again. He looks bummed, but I can think of worse ways to spend sixteen seconds (that's what she said).

Amani and Marcus seem to still be in Brussels, or at least some other similar-looking city. Either way, they're aware of being lost. They stop for directions at a gas station and get some from a guy with a blurry face GPS unit. Off they go. And then, as if to prove the superiority of stationery stores when it comes to getting directions, Jeremy and Sandy are shown already arriving at the Proving Ground in second place. Jeremy is more than happy to take this Roadblock. Sandy's probably happy to let him, because what fun would it be if Jeremy were yelling at her from the sidelines the whole time anyway? Never mind that he can't even see the course from the waiting area. He'd find a way.

Ernie's taking another try. Near the end, the driver calmly predicts, "Here you lose," and sure enough, Ernie bumps the car-shaped balloon. Good thing it's not a real car. "Again," the driver says. Ernie just hits it harder next time. And the next time as well. "Balloon," the driver murmurs laconically, just before Ernie smacks it yet again. Ernie interviews that he was getting frustrated, having to do it fifteen time. The his driver looks frustrated too, but in his completely subdued way that's starting to crack me up.

Jeremy does a perfect job at the speed part, so his driver (with a much fainter accent) directs him to go get in line behind Ernie. Who hits a cone on his latest attempt, and is sent back for another try. But not until Jeremy gets a crack at it, so apparently they get to take turns until one of them finishes. Ernie seems sick at the loss of their substantial lead. His instructor just looks motion-sick. Which is a pretty impressive feat on Ernie's part in its own right, if you think about it.

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Amazing Race




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