Amazing Race
Off to See the Wizard

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Russian Around

The twins get to the pool and when they get in the water, they discover that their instructor does not speak English. Sure, subtitles appear whenever she talks, but Natalie and Nadiya appear stubbornly unable to read them from their side of the screen. This seems like something that could be a real disadvantage to certain teams. Either all the instructors should speak English or none of them should. "At that point, we realize that we're screwed," one of the twins narrates. And there's nowhere to keep an Express Pass in a swimsuit, either.

At the library, Lexi and Trey have found the fourth card catalog entry they're looking for. So their librarian leads them through a maze of even more card catalog blocks (each of which still looks like an apartment building at 1/10 scale tipped on its side) and into another area of the library -- through shelves, through a printing room, up a stairwell and finally onto a cramped, windowless floor of shelves with aisles stretching almost literally to the vanishing point. "Your books is... here," the librarian says vaguely. Somehow Trey and Lexi don't instantly kill themselves. Instead, they manage to zero in on their first book and start circling in on the second and third, both of which are in a nearby section. It's not too late to pull a The Name of the Rose on this place, you know.

The twins are taking a crack at it with the synchro team, but neither of them appears to have much affinity for counting out when the moves are supposed to take place, which makes synchronization pretty tricky. Plus it's claustrophobic and intense and "we barely know these girls and we have to have our legs on top of each other and stuff in the water." She's saying that like it's a bad thing. They get the fail-buzzer, and the coach tells them in subtitled Russian, "There are big mistakes. The finish..." and she makes a sort of swirly gesture and ululating mouth noise, concluding, "That was bad." I think the only part of that they understood was the ululating. They again debate using the Express Pass, given that the lack of English is making this really hard. Don't any of the Russian synchronized swimmers speak Hindi either? They could at least meet them halfway then.

We come back from the ads in time to see a replay of most of that whole segment. Their instructor suggests, "Once more, okay?" But they decide to use their Express Pass. They call this across the pool to the Chippendales, who I guess have just been waiting to take another turn until after the twins are done. I was wondering what had happened to them. Jaymes tells them not to waste it, and interviews that they're all almost certainly safe given how far behind the other teams are. Out of the pool, the twins ask, "What if Abbie and them are already here?" "They're not here!" Jaymes scoffs, with unmerited confidence, but of course quite accurately. So the twins are shamed into giving it another try rather than feeling like quitters, which is also to the Chippendales advantage, because if the twins use their Express Pass now, they pass Jaymes & James. I seriously don't think that was even Jaymes's main concern, though. He doesn't strike me as that shrewd.

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Amazing Race

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