Amazing Race
It Was Like Being Dropped on Planet Mars

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Out in the street, the Globetrotters get the name of the place from a local, who in terms of directions tells them, "Ask taxi." That's exactly what they do, hopping into one. It's possible to be helpful without being knowledgeable. In fact, that's kind of my day job.

Gary and Matt get to the theater next, and Matt nabs the clue. But Gary's the one who figures out that they have to go to the building in the picture. Fortunately all the locals seem to know what the Main Post office looks like. Or maybe that's just the only thing that goes on postage stamps in Vietnam. I can't imagine it has anything to do with the fact that the structure was built by some chump named Gustave Eiffel. Pinky and the Brain are still getting info when Zev and Justin rush past on their way in. After hearing that it's a kilometer away, Matt wants to run it to save cash. Now that's a man who's confident in his lead.

Inside the theater, Justin is clue-fishing, but Zev's damp t-shirt indicates that he took a few passes at it as well. Once Justin retrieves the clue, they know exactly what to do. Meanwhile, Gary and Matt are learning that one kilometer is a lot longer when you don't know exactly where you're going. Or rather, Matt is. It doesn't seem to be as much of a revelation for Gary.

By this time, Flight Time and Big Easy are already at the clue box, positioned in the center of the vast stone courtyard in front of the Main Post Office, and they open it to discover that it's the first Detour of the season: Child's Play or Word Play. Suddenly Phil's at a park, walking past one of those parade dragons like you see at Chinese New Year, except that instead of having human beings inside it appears to be operated by dancing cymbals. Phil tells us that this is a choice between a noisy city park or noisy city streets. What, no quiet option? For Child's Play, the teams go to the park and pick out one of the concrete animals from a kiosk. "They must then transport this heavy and unwieldy animal along the bumpy pathways of the park," Phil adds over footage of production assistants struggling to load their animal on what amounts to a wheeled pallet, and then negotiating bumps and curbs (this is a very large park) while collecting five different-colored balloons from vendors. Once they get their animals and balloons to the children's playground, they get their next clue. Which I guess they can then try to use to make their toes grow back after having crushed them during the task.

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Amazing Race

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