Amazing Race
It Was Like Being Dropped on Planet Mars

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In a hurry? Read the recaplet for a nutshell description!

Phil welcomes us back to the Mekong Delta. "During the Vietnam war, it was a place to be feared as intense fighting between the Americans and the Vietcong led to thousands of American soldiers losing their lives." As opposed to the Vietcong, who simply respawned like it was a video game. "But today, it is a place of beauty and simple living." Hence all the boats being rowed up and down the river by the Vietnamese equivalents of Paris and Nicole. "And traveling down the now-peaceful waters," Phil bellows over the racket of the diesel engines that are clearly deafening him to the irony, "the Bassic III. This local riverboat was the second Pit Stop in a race around the world."

And then a totally awesome thing happens: the Pit Stop moves! Phil explains that the boat pulled anchor and sailed from Cai Be to My Tho, "a destination unknown to the teams." It looks to be about 25 miles along the river, or just far enough to mess everyone up. Poker players Maria|Tiffany and father/son team Gary and Matt interview separately from the boat's deck about how their Pit Stop is moving and they don't know where to. This is kind of a fun little twist, isn't it? Suddenly it's not so much a Pit Stop as a Pit Cruise.

The briefest of clips showing the moon passing across the screen indicates that it's the next day, as we see Gary and Matt leaving the now-docked boat at 5:45 AM. You'd think that would be the ass-crack of dawn, but it's already full daylight. "Make your way to Ho Chi Minh City," Gary reads. Phil tells us that the racers have a long taxi ride ahead of them to get to Vietnam's largest city. There, they'll have to find the "Golden Dragon Water Puppet Theater," (which also sounds like the name of a Chinese buffet in New Jersey) and grab their next clue from the mouth of one of the dragon puppets wiggling around in a pool. Gary and Matt run out to the main road, but have trouble deciding which way to go once they get there. In a joint interview, Gary says Matt is proving himself, but it's tough to let go. "Pick a direction, Dad, let's go," Matt says impatiently, rather undercutting Gary's point. In turn, Matt says he gets annoyed when his dad plays the dad card, and hopes he'll see him as an adult. Well, there's a first time for everything, right? Oh, wait, that happens every season. There's also a last time for everything, though, and perhaps we've already seen it. Then when Gary and Matt arrive at their last Pit Stop or the Finish Line, Gary can sigh wearily, "Goddamn, Phil, I'm gonna be taking care of this little punk for the rest of my life." Whatever the case, they seem to find a cab pretty quickly.

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Amazing Race

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