Let's see. Give me a minute. Elvis-O-Rama, the Tupperware Museum, the Boll Weevil Monument, Cranberry World, The Shuffleboard Hall Of Fame, Poodle Dog Rock, the Mecca Of Albino Squirrelsâ¦ghost towns, theme parks, wax museums, the place where you can drive through the middle of a treeâ¦alligator farms, tarantula ranchesâ¦nope. Never heard of the World's Biggest Office Chair. But that's where the teams start off this week, before heading to Talladega for a moment that the Weavers can only call, as we would around here, "Un! Comfortable!" But because the racetrack "task" only involves bikes (whuh?), it's not as bad as it could have been. Then it's on to a mobile home park, and then an unsatisfying Detour, and then New Orleans, and again with the awkwardness as the hometown Schroeders are eliminated. It's good that they're gone, particularly because both boneheaded Papa and boo-hooing Stassi are quite ready to go, but that's several more layers of sad than I really look for on a Tuesday night. In other news, a Linz brother is legitimately funny for the very first time, we meet a Tonya Gone Wild, the Gaghans pull their fannies out of the fire again, and Phil wears another ugly shirt. Things are going downhill fast here, y'all.
Our show begins this week with a sympathy disclaimer of the same type used when the Sri Lanka episode aired after the tsunami. This one explains that this episode was filmed "several weeks" before Hurricane Katrina struck parts of Mississippi and Louisiana. The show this week is "dedicated" to the memory of people who died, and people who are coping. It's a lovely gesture that kind of makes you wish it were a better episode.
Previously on I Got Buttered At Waffle House: Airport "intrigue" barely worthy of a prank-playing segment on an episode of Trading Spaces: Family kicked off a soporific leg that featured splattering mud, delicious waffles, and a guy making out with seafood. People, it's not always a pretty job. A mystery bus ride led to a Roadblock that charged two members of each team with the challenging task of being strapped down and affected by the laws of physics. And at the pit stop, the Aiellos were eliminated, because the world is really hostile that way. On the up side, the Bransens did win free gas for life, along with a 56-page glossary defining "free," "gas," and "life." It's remarkable how lifeless Phil sounds during these particular previouslies. He keeps sounding like he's going to say, " and I'm really very sorry."
Credits. Can I ask what's with the incongruous monkey in the credits? It's like: Paolos doing their scary head-turn by a garbage truck. Horses running. Purple mountains' majesty. Black family doing Tae Kwan Do. "Hyah!" Black family smiling warmly by a river. A plane making a showy dipping maneuver over this land, which is made for you and me. Wally and the Tonyas grinning as they take in suburbia from the comfort of their bikes. Wally and the Tonyas radiating warm togetherness in front of a typical American home. Monkey looking around nervously. Weavers, leading their horses across a field of grass. Aiellos, screwing around in their backyard...do you see what I'm saying? What's the relevance of the monkey? [BOMP.]
Commercials. I would like to register my objection to these "Amazing Achievement" CBS commercials if they're going to continue plotzing over such feats as Reichen and Chip handing some fruit over to a bunch of harmless orangutans. That's not even the most amazing thing that happened in that episode. What happened to Millie going batshit crazy? Now that was amazing.
Rockets! Phil explains that we are at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama, where the teams engaged in bits of local color such as signing on to America Online. He calls it "one of NASA's most prestigious research facilities," and "a living tribute to America's exploration of space." I like the idea that a research facility is "living." Maybe if it's crawling with bacterial samples. And here we are, at the space shuttle Pathfinder, and...don't even ask me what they're doing dressing Phil this week, seriously. It's like as part of the Family Edition bumbledee-doo, they've decided to purchase all of Phil's clothing from the Pasty Tourist Dad Collection. He's wearing hiked-up white pants (GAH!), along with a shirt with wide vertical stripes in green and white. This is what you get if you are forced to improvise an outfit out of nothing but picnic tablecloths. Can I make a request that Phil never wear white pants again? Would that be a hard rule to follow? Is there some contract with the Unflattering Trouser Company that can only be paid off in trade? Is something compelling wardrobe to continue shopping at Irregular Crotches For Men? Because there are times when even clothing that is being sold at a 40 percent markdown should not be purchased, even if you are blowing the rest of the budget on securing that killer Roadblock location at the Kenosha outlet mall. Anyway, Pathfinder -- or, rather, a random stretch of empty ground kind of near Pathfinder -- was the third pit stop. Mandatory rest period to come down from all the blistering excitement, blah blah blah. Phil wonders whether the weird way the Weavers are acting will "further distance them" from everyone else, which hardly seems possible unless it involves simultaneously dancing and witnessing, and whether the Gaghans can drag themselves out of last place.