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Amazing Race 16 – Ep. 2 Commentary – San Jose. H-O-S-E.


Okay, Amazing Race. We have been friends for a long, long time. I have watched every episode of your series starting with the very first episode and the “smoke that thunders.” We got through some rocky times through near cancellation, Jonathan and Victoria, the Family Edition and the suggestion that Danielle should have been an All-Star based on her 8th place finish (I know she won, so what, she still shouldn’t have been there).

However, very rarely have you ever put out an episode where nothing happened. Nada. Zilch. I am never bored during this show and I found myself wondering what new App I could download. Let’s recap quickly – bus terminals, Llama Llama Red Pajama, and German pastry preparation. And elimination so obvious that they might as well have been wearing red shirts.

A moment on Jody and Shannon … I have never been so wrong about the potential talent of someone based on what they looked like on paper since I thought Rick Ankiel was going to be the next great left-handed starter. I had high hopes for this team – grandma is a friggin triathlete – and they were so lackluster they barely got an edit. If not for Adrian and the tightrope last week, they would have been dead in the water. This week, they were just sauntering through Chile. It was as if they signed on simply to have a CBS-paid-for vacation in Sequesterville.

If I were ranking the truly poorest displays by teams in AR history, Dana/Adrian and Jody/Shannon would be in the discussion. That does not bode well for this season.

Hopefully, the remaining nine will get their act together, stop doing stupid things and turn the season around, but so far, I am underwhelmed by my favorite show which doesn’t involve a thought Smoke Monster.

Travel – No airports this week as teams remain in Chile. However, we have some very interesting bus station developments. First, the non-issue of the line jumping. This has been going on since the beginnings of the show – teams join together and cut lines. It happens. It rarely makes a difference in anything. Alliances in the Amazing Race don’t last, and rarely work. Teams work together in some settings and at some points in the Race, but mostly, alliances don’t help much. Sharing information in the beginning legs is helpful, but as mentioned before, this ain’t Survivor.

So, Joe/Heidi and Carol/Brandy (Crandy from now on) have teamed up and pissed off the Cops for cutting the line. Big deal. As it turns out, that wasn’t even the best bus. Cowboys Jet/Cord figured out – as did Jeff/Jordan and Brent/Caite – that taking a bus to another city provided better options. However, the intellectually challenged co-ed teams never bothered to notice their bus connected through another bus station, so they missed it. Then compounded it by leaving far too late to get to that station, and by the time they returned, they missed getting on the Cowboys’ bus. Kudos to the Boys for keeping that info under their … umm … hats.

Speaking of their hats – why such concern for the rain? Aren’t you guys cowboys? Don’t your hats get wet while you’re doing cowboy things? Isn’t that an outside profession? Why so metrosexual all of a sudden?

Meanwhile, Jody/Shannon wind up on the last slow bus to Isla Margarita (anyone else singing old Madonna songs in their head?). A somewhat analogous mode of transportation with their whole Race persona.

Detour – Rope a Llama or Condor Consternation – Teams either go into a pen and dress a llama in a saddle and scarf for a bizarre ceremony, or even more strangely don a condor costume and “fly” into the water. To me, the infinitely more fun task would be to put on the goofy condor costume, however most teams do the llama task.

Clearly, the Cowboys have it made in the shade here. Since roping herd animals is sort of in the job description. They smartly bribe the animal with food. Again Joe struggles with a task he brags will be easy and gets kicked in the shin (not even the worst animal kicking incident of the episode) and spit on, and Crandy obviously struggled with anything that didn’t involve a spa treatment. Joe just wore out the llamas so much that one of them took a nap enabling him to complete the task.

The Cops Louie and Michael use sticks in some weird semaphore method and make an unfortunate comment about the “sistas” passing them by. I hope the Claires are calling themselves the “sistas” the way Team Bama was back in AR12 (this is the reason the BQs kept calling them that). Shannon actually suggests they go even slower because that was this team’s problem …hastiness.


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