Linzes and Blacks on the way to the pit stop. They're following each other at first, but then they break apart and take different routes. In the Linz car, Megan isn't sure they did the right thing, because she thinks they should have just stayed with the other team. "That's right, we're not about supporting each other," Nick says from the front (I think). "We're also not about listening to each other," Megan says pointedly. I have a feeling she gets outvoted a lot.
Blacks and Linzes. The tension mounts. We see both teams pull into the pit stop and run. And then, running up to the mat, it's...the Linzes. Booooo! I actually booed out loud in the basement of M. Giant's house, which I figured meant that at least I cared, which is more than I can say for some other opening legs. I didn't dislike the Linzes on second viewing as much as on first viewing, but I still am very suspicious of the boys in particular. The Linzes high-five each other, and Phil rags them about getting beaten by children.
Speaking of children, but not of beating the Linzes, here come the Blacks. And Phil Philiminates them, and that's just...not fun. Austin stares ahead severely. "You know, sometimes you win and sometimes you don't," Reggie says, "but as long as you give your best effort, you can feel like I'm feeling right now. I'm very proud of my family, and nobody quit. I'm sad, but I'm not disappointed." Interesting distinction. Mama Black strokes Austin's head. "And I can never be disappointed in my family," Reggie continues. Phil offers special condolences to the kids. "This is tough on anybody, doesn't matter how old you are," he says. "But to know that your mom and dad are proud of you, does that mean a lot?" Kenneth nods seriously. Phil grins and proceeds to say exactly the right thing to Kenneth, for which I will love him forever: "And you looked after your brother pretty well, I understand." This is precisely, exactly what Kenneth needs, to be snapped back into big-brother mode rather than little-sad-kid mode. "He kept up running with us and never gave up," Kenneth says more brightly. Phil tells them they should be proud, and that their parents are proud. Reggie agrees. Mama Black interviews that the race let them see their kids "step out" and do great things. Reggie still says it was the "experience of a lifetime." Awwww.
Verdict? This isn't the season I would have chosen, but I enjoyed it. Except for the Paolos, who are another very frustrating casting breakdown, in my eyes.