Amazing Race
Flipped Out

Episode Report Card
admin: B | 1 USERS: B
YOU GRADE IT
Too Much of a Good Thing
In a hurry? Read the recaplet for a nutshell description!

Phil kicks off the 22nd (!) season by intoning, "This is Los Angeles." As if it would be anywhere else. Over b-roll of famous landmarks like the Santa Monica Pier and the Pacific Ocean -- not technically a landmark, I know -- he goes on, "Once a desolate valley, it is now the most populated county in the United States." Not that this stops parts of it from being a desolate valley anyway. "And in the hills surrounding this City of Angels, world-famous tourist attractions. Including the Griffith Observatory, a window to the stars." See what Phil did there? We see him on the grounds outside the familiar (to me at least, having not only been there, but also having seen Yes Man) domed structure as he concludes, "Built in the 1930s, this cultural and scientific icon will now serve as the starting line in a race around the world." Good, because with all the smog and light pollution from the city below, I can't imagine it's worth a damn as an observatory any more.

On cue, the copter-cam swings around and down the hill to zero in on this season's teams, getting themselves to the Starting Line under their own steam for once. They're jogging up the dirt path to the observatory in pairs as Phil goes on, "These eleven new teams now have their chance to win one million dollars and The Amazing Race." As they're on the final climb, which will take on Sisyphean dimensions over the course of the sequence that's about to begin, Phil starts introducing the teams. "Chuck and Wynona, married fifteen years from Daphne, Alabama." Chuck is rocking a gigantic curly mullet in 2012, which is even more amazing given that his wife is a hairdresser. Letting him leave the house like that is tantamount to malpractice. Footage of the two of them hanging out in their driveway with ATVs and alligator skins does nothing to dispel his claim that they're "a cross between redneck and country." What a study in contrasts they must be. She supposedly cuts his hair in the same driveway, as he claims that his "Samson hair" is the source of his power. He'd better be pretty powerful, then, because he looks ridiculous. Furthermore, the interior of their home proves to be full of dead animals, as Chuck is something of an obsessive taxidermist who has covered every square inch of wall with the mortal remains of living creatures he has killed, eaten, mounted and presumably shat out. Okay, so maybe he's kind of powerful.

Bates and Anthony are brothers and pro hockey players from North Carolina. Getting all the hockey hair guys out of the way early, I see. They interview that playing hockey requires one to be mentally and physically ready for anything, just like the race does. I predict they finish eighth. "Plus we're super good-looking, too," grins Anthony, the one with shorter hair, as he shows off a big old gap where his front teeth used to be. The Amazing Editors emphasize this striking feature with an ironic tooth-twinkle effect lest you miss it, which you wouldn't have.

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Amazing Race

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