Amazing Race
The Race Begins

Episode Report Card
Miss Alli: B+ | 3 USERS: A
YOU GRADE IT
Swing, you fat bastard!

Much running through the water. Now the racers have to find their way to Batoka Gorge, which Kevin pronounces "Batoka George," like it's the name of a gun-running mobster, or perhaps Curious George's international cousin. Team Guido is happy to be done with the Knife's Edge, and, as it turns out, is not enjoying how much work it is to stay ahead of Loud Pushy Frank. No, no, Team Guido! Do not become discouraged!

Kevin and Drew now have a conversation about Kevin's irritation over Drew's having bought a map from one of the locals. Drew points out that Kevin TOLD him to get a map, and Kevin counters that he said that when he thought it was going to be free. Drew: "Nothing's free, Kevin! We're in Africa!" Right. Because in Chicago, when you walk around downtown, they give you a hot towel and a bag of peanuts, and they polish your shoes, and they give you a rubdown, and they don’t charge you a thing. Stepping on my perfectly good line, Drew quickly points out the flaw in his own argument, saying, "You go to the Statue of Liberty, is the guy giving these things [maps] away for free? For cryin' out loud! Free!" Exactly. So the line he wanted was not so much "Nothing's free, Kevin! We're in Africa!" but more "Nothing's free, Kevin! We're on Earth!" Drew now proudly points out that at least by buying the map, they have…a map. "Zambia," Drew says, pointing to the map. "That's where we are." Kevin takes the map from him. "That's Namibia, jackass."

Thus officially endeth my resistance to this show. I freakin' give up. "That's Namibia, jackass." Now that's some serious comedy!

Here, Phil tells us that any team can win the right to skip ahead all the way to Songwe Village (bypassing the Silly Stunt portion of our program) by being the first to find the Fast Forward ticket, which they have to find using yet another clue. Most of this segment consists of people saying "Boiling Pot" (the name of the place where the ticket is hidden) over and over again. This is not really interesting at all, so suffice it to say that the lawyers win it, although Margaretta and Davey make a valiant effort. Yay, Team Ensure! I want them to adopt me and take me to the circus. The lawyers, on the other hand, are a total embarrassment, especially when Rob reflects on their success by considering the physical demands of climbing down to where the ticket was and remarking, "I don’t think anybody else could have done that." Yeah. Nobody except the sixty-year-olds, you smarmy little pretty-boy.

As if they're not annoying me enough already, we now get a shot of the lawyers handing out American flags to the local kids. I understand that they mean well, but it's all just a bit presumptuous. Sometimes I think we've all heard a few too many stories about how Russian kids will love you for the rest of their lives if you bring them a Beatles 8-track, and now we're sending people out with the notion that you should approach strangers and give them some little taste of the United States, like, "Hi, I know I'm in your country and don’t speak your language and couldn’t recognize your flag if I used it as my shelter in a pounding rain, but would you like a little four-by-six replica of MY flag?" Ick. As a friend of mine put it, it has an uncomfortable "hello, little street urchins!" sort of quality. They also call themselves "impromptu diplomats." Shut up, lawyers.

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Amazing Race

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