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Freelance entertainment writer, martial arts instructor, and mother of two.

The Amazing Race 17, Nov. 7 – Just Like Guitar Hero


We had yet another non-elimination last night on The Amazing Race. Will we still have a third one around the final four? It was great for Nick and Vicki, giving them a second chance, but tonight the racers will be staying in St. Petersburg and won’t be getting an equalizer like a flight to even them all out again. What will happen to Nick and Vicki?

Jill and Thomas are the first to leave the pit stop by St. Isaac’s Cathedral at 8:30 AM. They get a clue to travel by taxi to Avtovo Circus to get the next clue. Thomas discusses being extremely outspoken and competitive, and Jill agrees that’s an issue, him talking at her and not to her. Brook and Claire leave five minutes later, and Brook is excited, hoping she gets to wear a leotard at the circus. Michael and Kevin leave five minutes after that. Jill and Thomas get to the circus and find it closed. The next two teams arrive, as do Nat and Kat, Chad and Stephanie, Gary and Mallory. Apparently we won’t watch them leave the pit stop.

The gate finally opens and all teams rush in and find a Detour – Circus Band or Circus Clown. In Circus Band, teams will choose an accordion player to teach both of them a Russian folk song. When they can perform it correctly, they’ll get the next clue. In Circus Clown, teams make their way under the big top to learn a plate-spinning routine. If they can keep ten plates spinning simultaneously for at least ten seconds, they’ll get the next clue.

Jill and Thomas decide to do the plates, and while the other teams are thinking which to choose, a clown is making his way around placing rubber noses on everyone. Michael and Kevin decide on spinning plates, as do Brook and Claire. Kevin calls it bizarre with clowns all over the place. They keep breaking plates and having to start over. Brook and Claire were struggling at first as well, but think they finally have it.

Chad, of course, is yelling at Stephanie. Nick and Vicki have arrived, and are doing the task as well. He mentions that his grandma had a clown room that they all had to sleep in as kids, and when they woke up, they’d see a clown first thing. He and his brother were left not liking clowns at all. I can think of several people who do not like clowns who would be understanding. That said, the man in the house next to me growing up had a clown room in his basement. While it was cool back then, I don’t think I would have wanted to wake up there.

On the musical side of things, the Doctors, Nat and Kat, are workng on the accordions. At first they were just trying to follow along, then they realized they’d need some type of numeric code to get this figured out. Nat realizes they’re nerdy side is coming out as they translate music into numbers. They numbered their fingers and started writing down the code as their instructor played. Gary and Mallory are working it as well, as she does it remembering the tune in her head. If she misses a wrong note, she’ll know.

Michael and Kevin are spinning plates and get to nine a few times, but on the tenth one, always break it. Mallory’s method for learning suddenly isn’t working as she is taught the second hafl of the esong. Jill and Thomas get frustrated with the plates and head to the accordions, thinking they might as well try it as long as the two Detours are right next to each other.

Nick and Vicki are working the plates, as are Brook and Claire. Brook thinks there is no challenge they cannot overcome if they just focus and not panic. They finally get their last plate and are the first ones to move on. They get a mystery they must solve to get to the next clue, the Bank Bridge, a canal bridge guarded by four creatures with golden wings. They joke about the plate technique, saying it’s second nature to them and how they spend their free time.

The Doctors are still hard at work on their accordion learning, calling it similar to painting by numbers with their technique. They finally get it and get the next clue, congratulating thmeslves. Gary complains that becaue of the big clown noses they’re forced to wear, they can’t look down to see the keys. Thomas is struggling as well.

Chad can’t do the plates, thinks it’s stupid, and they move on to the accordions. He compares it to Guitar Hero. Nick and Vicki get their plates spun and move on. Thomas can’t believe they have to do three songs on the accordion. Gary and Mallory finally complete it and move on. Michael and Kevin finish their plates as well.

Brook and Claire find the Bank Bridge with the four creatures with wings and get a clue telling them to travel on foot to 1 Vladimirskiy Prospekt Tower. They can ask locals for help, but can’t pay a taxi to lead them. They have to climb up the tower, then figure out that the figurine on the ledge is inviting them to visit a famous building, Church on Spilled Blood, where they’ll find the next clue.


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