Amazing Race

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M. Giant: A- | Grade It Now!
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Huger than Huge

Brent and Caite stop to look at a map outside a visitor's center for directions, sniping at each other angrily. And this is when the Cowboys pass them. That's not a moment that determines the outcome of the race, but there are so few changes in rank this episode that I feel the need to highlight them.

The brothers, meanwhile, flag down a bicyclist and get about halfway through reading the clue to him before he says, "Coit Tower." Dude wants to get back to his ride. Back in the cab, Jordan declares, "People who ride bicycles are smart. It's a general rule." I was not aware of that rule. I was aware of the rule that bicyclists meet certain standards of balance and coordination, but now that I know they are Google on two wheels, I have no reason to buy an iPhone. Back at the visitor's center, the models' cabbie has joined them to decode the map, which doesn't help with their frustration level. "This is why I ___wanted somebody who could speak English," Caite carps. I think it is more valid to complain about a language barrier in one's home country. Which is not to say it's valid to put oneself in a position where one has to deal with a language barrier in one's home country in the first place. The Cowboys are the next to find the clue leading them to Coit Tower. Luckily, they bought The Smart Guide to San Francisco in the Shanghai airport, and the description rings a bell. Even better, their cabbie knows where Coit Tower is. Well played, Cowboys. And boo, Amazing Race. This is what happens when you make people sit in an airport for so long that they have nothing to do for hours but research the next destination.

"Why are we in America and nobody is speaking English?" Brent wonders almost idly. And then their driver comes up to a closed gate, so it's pretty clear they've taken a wrong turn somewhere. The Cowboys pass them again coming back, telling their driver not to slow down to give the models' driver directions. And he's getting even more lost, with Brent and Caite yelling at him, and Brent yelling at Caite to shut up. "Now we're gonna lose because of this dumb-ass," Caite whines, looking like she wants to commit battery cabdriver.

After the ads and a nice establishing shot of the Golden Gate Bridge, the models are still so lost that the subtitle reading "Currently in last place" almost seems like piling on. And yet, paradoxically, the "Currently" seems almost generous. Caite orders their driver to go back to the 101. So they're starting over? "Well, this has already screwed us," Brent says. One of those rare occasions where his commentary goes beyond the level of simple narrative.

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Amazing Race

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