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Scare Tactics, October 24 – Zombies and Bloody Walls, Just Another Day

 

So it’s zombie meets crazy people on tonight’s episode of Scare Tactics as the show does what it does best and scares the life out of people. The show features a victim, an accomplice and the freakout that tends to do more than just freak some people out.

On tonight’s episode, we start off with Leah who wants to scare her friend Kristie and put her outside of her comfort zone. In true “Scare Tactics” style, they have something quite obscure planned for Kristie. Why do these folks accept these crazy jobs? Are there no normal jobs? Kristie is led into a room, assisted by Lauren. THe room looks condemned, and a random vagrant shows up advising Kristie that it is a portal to a domain. Lauren tells Kristie there is black mold or maybe the plague. It could happen, right?

Blood begins coming out the wall, and Kristie stands there with her clipboard looking rather dumbfounded, as a construction worker advises in a CSI tone that blood is coming out of the wall. The crazy man enters the room, a pentagram is lit on fire, and Kristie is being offered up as a sacrifice. The crazy man watches the walls bleed, and Kristie is shaking while he asks if she is scared, because he wants to put her on Scare Tactics.

You watch these people enter these strange rooms that resemble something out of a Hostel film and they just go along with it. Scare Tactics makes the scenarios entertaining, but also teaches you what not to do. For instance don’t go with strangers and don’t accept a job in a room with walls that bleed; it should be a simple rule of thumb.

Our next victim is Gil, with his friend Giovanni entering him in Scare Tactics as a lab worker who will be testing medication that makes the male organ increase by five inches. So gullible, poor Gil, he should have run right out of the room. Bridgette enters the room, and Gil and Nathan are asked to give their arousal level as they look at random strange pictures of fruit and vegetables. Brigitte removes her lab coat to show a revealing ensemble and then a bikini. Really? Why don’t Gil and Nathan get up there and strip? Nathan begins to whine in pain while watching Bridgette strip.

Nathan keels over in pain, and blood is running down his legs. Gil begins flipping out, advising that he did not sign any papers. The lab tech tells him that the same thing will happen to him unless she does one thing and that is to put him on Scare Tactics. Gil seems freaked out as he watches Nathan on the floor bleeding. He is a good sport, though, despite this problematic situation for him.

We have exploding organs, strange rooms, and people in lab coats who sound more like actors than real doctors, and yet no one questions anything. Remind me not to trust my friends if they offer me a job!

Halloween always brings out the best in people, so adding a few zombies to the show is always a plus. Jeffrey is next, and his cousin Emily is putting him on the show to get back at him. Jeffrey believes in the supernatural and has a love of law enforcement. The crime being committed here is by zombies. Why do they always have to blame the zombies?

Jeffrey arrives at the makeshift crime scene, and a waitress comes out and begins crying, telling them how unreal and crazy it was. There was fighting, and now they need the crime scene unit to come in. Jeffrey and the cop find what looks like ribs, but I am not so sure. Where is Dr. Hannibal Lector or George Romero when you need them? The cop finds a drooling man who looks a little walking dead-ish and begins to attack and bite the cop while Jeffrey and the waitress stand there.

Jeffrey is just going over details of what the zombies are doing with a slight smirk on his face, and the zombies begin to ask if he is scared. He says yes! The zombies inform him he is on Scare Tactics. He takes it with a grain of salt, but advises he will be getting Emily back, so watch out Emily!

The next victim is Joey who does not trust the government (does anyone really?). His friend Ashley is setting him up to appear in an abandoned military warehouse to film TRUTHISODES, because the government is lying!

Joey happily volunteers and is joined by a cameraman and an interviewer. They start in the strange-looking elevator. Joey discovers pictures of bloody babies. It looks like a place you should not even go into without the military. Joey winds up in the dark and mentions right away that he is scared. They discover a new room with what appears to be a dead body, and the interviewer announces they are finding things they are not supposed to find.

Project Runway 9, Season Finale – Triumph from Trinidad


Last week, on Project Runway, the four finalists went to their respective homes to prepare for Fashion Week. When Tim visited them, he found that Kimberly and Viktor appeared to be making good progress, but that Anya and Josh both had serious problems. The four designers then returned to New York City to complete their preparations for Fashion Week. They also had to display a mini-collection to the judges, who were considering sending someone else home. After examining the mini-collections, the judges changed their minds and sent everybody on to Fashion Week, instead.

Back at the Hudson Hotel penthouse, Anya and Kimberly talk about the upcoming show. Anya admits she didn’t show her best work. Josh is upset that there are still three other designers left, as that reduces his chances of winning. Viktor tells us that all of his pieces are complete, he just needs to edit his collection to get the desired results.

The designers then head to their spacious workshop. It’s just two days before the big show. Anya tells us that she’d had an “identity crisis” with her collection, as in should she stick with her Caribbean roots or try for a more mainstream look? Or should she meet somewhere in the middle? She agrees with the judges that her mini-collection was a disaster and decides to rework and restyle her clothes to enhance her Caribbean vibe.

Tim arrives and tells the designers that he’d disagreed with a lot of what the judges said, but advises the designers to heed their instructions anyway. On a happier note, he has come to give everybody $500.00 for a shopping trip at Mood. The designers also have the traditional 30 minutes to sketch some designs. Kimberly wants to make a black version of her magenta bubble skirt. (Seriously? The judges hated it!) Josh wants to rework his jumper, as the front was fine, but the back was horrible. Anya has a few vague ideas, but nothing definite. Viktor would like to make another gown.

At Mood, Anya simply picks out whichever patterned fabrics strike her fancy. Josh picks out some neon green fabric and is happy to have his calmest shopping experience yet. Viktor chooses some sheer black fabric.

Back at the workroom, Tim gives everybody until midnight. Anya has chosen several prints and wants to make three new looks, as she’s already decided to ditch the black swimsuit and its cover-up. Kimberly makes a skirt. When the designers go for their hair consultation, they all describe the judges’ critiques. Anya, for instance, had been told that her styling had made the models look old, and so asks the stylist for more youthful ‘dos. Back in the workroom, Josh asserts that he can make shorts and a tank-top in under an hour. He’s also using the neon green fabric for the shorts. Viktor thinks Josh is getting too scattered.

Speaking of Josh, he has a breakdown and starts crying. He says he’s come so far that failure doesn’t feel like an option. He’s frustrated that he still has so much work to do and that there are only two days left before the show. Anya tries to comfort him, telling him that she’s feeling the pressure, too. Josh tells her that he doesn’t have any back-up: he’s unemployed. He notes that crying isn’t going to accomplish anything and that he needs to get back to work.

The next day, the designers get back to work. Viktor is making a tank-top. The designers and models then have make-up consultations with Collier Strong. Afterwards, Tim comes in to make his rounds and he starts with Kimberly. She plans to revise one of her skirts, but isn’t sure how. Tim tells her that she needs to figure it out, pronto. Anya admits to feeling nervous and to simply buying prints she liked, without any real game plan. Tim advises her to spice up her collection. Viktor shows off his new black gown, and tells Tim that he’s going to focus more on silhouettes. Finally, Tim stops by Josh, and thinks the green shorts look peculiar. He tells Josh that his mini-collection had looked it had belonged to a sophisticated woman, while the shorts and some other pieces look far less sophisticated.

Josh later tells us that he was “confused” by Tim’s critique. and simply plans to “go with his gut.” Four hours to go, and Kimberly tells us she still has a lot of work to do. Anya is making some new pieces; she has more than ten looks already, but isn’t happy with some of them. She wants ten looks she can confidently show at Fashion Week. She’s sticking with her Caribbean theme, since the judges see her that way. Viktor talks about how he’s learned to edit and not get too emotionally attached to his designs.

The models come in for their fittings. These seem to go well for Josh and Anya, both of whom feel much more confident after the fittings. Viktor is similarly confident and can’t wait to show off his work. On that note, the designers go home.

On the “day” of the show, the designers get up at 3 in the morning and get ready for the big day. Anya tells Kimberly that she began designing after her brother died. Viktor tells Josh that he’s nervous about addressing the crowd. Even so, he’s still happy and excited to be going to Fashion Week. Josh is proud of his collection and thinks he’s grown over the season.


The Amazing Race, Oct. 30 – Time to Cut the Hay


I was finally put out of my misery last week with the elimination of Liz and Marie. Not that I didn’t like them as a team, as I did. It was just impossible to tell them apart. Actually, there aren’t really any teams this season that I don’t like. It’s an fun season.

The first team to leave Bangkok, Thailand, are Amani and Marcus at 7:22 AM. Their clue tells them fly to Lilongwe, Malawi, in Africa, where they’ll head to a Tobacco Warehouse to get their next clue. Marcus mentions the patience he needs at home with their special needs child. Amani knows this is how they have learned to appreciate even the smallest of milestones. He wants to be able to show their daughter to never give up. They’re very excited to be headed to Africa.

One minute later, Bill and Cathi are the next team to leave. She calls Africa just fabulous. One more minute later, Ernie and Cindy leave. She notes they have made a mistake in every single leg, except for the first one. They want to try and minimize those. Justin and Jennifer leave at 7:29 AM. She teaches Special Ed., and says she would do almost anything for her students. and that’s how she feels about this race. It’s her baby. Andy and Tommy leave at 8:06 AM, and Laurence and Zac leave one minute after that. Jeremy and Sandy are the last to leave at 9:22 AM. They’ve been dating for about eight months, but had a strong friendship beforehand. 

Amani and Marcus hit the airport first, but find there is only one flight out to Malawi, and everyone will end up on the same flight. One of the racers notes they’ll all be together like “one big freaking family.”

Once they hit Malawi, the teams flag down taxis to take them to the Tobacco Warehouse. Jennifer explains they’ve never been to Africa, so they’re just going to try and relax and take it all in. Cindy uses the opportunity to expound on some of the trivia she learned about Malawi. Over sixty percent of the country’s income comes from the sale of tobacco leaves. Tommy mentions the reason he’s never been to this country is because there’s no snow there. And apparently he doesn’t have use for buying tobacco leaves. Bill and Cathi get out of the airport in last place. She tells the driver that as farmers they love this country, as it’s very spacious.

The first team to arrive at the warehouse are Jeremy and Sandy. They find a Roadblock. One person from each team will don a worker’s uniform and steer massive bales of tobacco through a maze-like warehouse using a short-handled dolly. Once they’ve transported ten bales, they’ll get the next clue.

Sandy requests that Jeremy do this task, as to her it looks really hard to do this amidst a lot of chaos. Ernie and Cindy arrive next, followed by Justin and Jennifer. Both of the guys will be doing the heavy lifting here. Jeremy states the obviously, that moving these two-hundred pound bales is a lot of work.Not only are they heavy, but everyone is running into each other and their bales. Sandy says the workers are getting in their way. Hmm, they might think it’s the other way around.

Laurence and Zac arrive next, and the senior member of this team will be performing this task, interestingly enough. Andy and Tommy arrive just after with Tommy agreeing to do this Roadblock. Amani and Marcus are caught in traffic that resembles a parade, and Bill and Cathi are just behind them, resigned to making up this time somehow. Both teams are very frustrated.

While the racers continue to transport the bales of tobacco, Cindy notes that the people here have so much energy. Everyone is so happy and vibrant, singing and dancing. They sing and dance and cheer the whole time while they’re watching the others move around the bales.Andy seems to be enjoying it.

Amani and Marcus arrive at Gate No. 7, but don’t see the cluebox, so continue on. Bill and Cathi get out of the car and reach the cluebox. Bill will be transporting the tobacco. She knows with Amani and Marcus behind them that there’s no way she could make up any time moving these heavy bales. He spent a couple years behind hand trucks, and explains, “When it’s time to cut the hay, it’s time to cut the hay.”

Amani and Marcus finally find the cluebox, and he wisely decides to do this Roadblock. She just laughs at him in his orange outfit. Justin is starting to have a hard time breathing with all the tobacco all over, but Jennifer thinks it smells like her dad, as he’s been smoking her whole life. It’s like a piece of home to her. Laurence is really tired, but he’s moving. Marcus feels like an NFL rookie all over again. 

The first to finish delivering his bales is Jeremy. He and Sandy get a clue telling them to make their way to Memorial Tower and search the area for their next clue. Ernie is the next to finish, followed by Justin. He talks about Marcus struggling, and says none of them have ever done this before, except for possibly Bill on the farm. Tommy finishes next.


Top Chef: Just Desserts 2 – Ep 10 – Stop! Hammer Time!


Steph continues to stand alone. Another Top Chef season, another male winner. Although, Macho did come very close this time – I honestly think that she barely missed out and wound up in second place, based on the judges’ comments. However, it was not enough and the decision seemed to come down to a simple question – is it better to have received too much help or to have done it yourself but with flaws?

Hammer gets the win, and to be honest, he pretty much deserved it. If you think back through the season, Hammer (and his name is Chris Hanmer, but Hammer is much funnier) was almost always near the top and seemed to dominate much of the quality cooking. I think it would have been cool for Macho to pull it off just because it’s getting ridiculous that women can’t seem to win Top Chef. It took The Amazing Race 17 races to have an all-woman team win, but women had been part of co-ed wins. Women win Project Runway. Women have won several Survivors, and a bunch of American Idols. They’ve dominated America’s Next Top Model…but perhaps that’s a bad example.

But they can’t do it in the kitchen. Steph still stands alone, and probably only does because Blais fumbled the ball at the goal line. Thirteen seasons of Top Chef shows and 12 men have won. I didn’t like Macho a whole lot, but she is very talented and could have won. But she didn’t.

I think the difference came from a decision she made that (as Matt actually verbalized) anyone other than Hammer would have made. And perhaps that’s why he deserved to win. When presented with the booted chefs as sous chefs, Macho got the first selection slot. They got two sous chefs, the first was random and the second was schoolyard pick. For her pick, she instantly chose Orlando for his showpiece skills. A very wise selection, except she used him too much. That final challenge entry was three parts Macho, one part Orlando. And it was obvious. The other guys were four parts Hammer and Matt. They used their team’s talents, but they didn’t completely rely upon them. I think this perception that this challenge was too big for her really caused Macho to lose.

The other thing that won it for Hammer was something Elvis said – his plated dish was the only one that the judges completely finished. Taste goes a long way.

The challenge was a good one, if a bit uninspired. Chefs had to make a display table – with a showpiece, an entremet, a bread, and a bon bon. They also had to make a dessert base on their source of inspiration – each of them chose family. It’s a good challenge in that it covers a wide array of baking and cooking skills. The showpiece takes a lot of creativity and technical skills. Cake is a pastry chef staple, and entremet take great skill to make. A bon bon is a way to pack a lot of flavor in a small package. At their core, pastry chefs are bakers too, and all good bakers need to make bread. And the last dish is a free range creative dish. It was a solid challenge, which had about 200 judges and guest tasters.

The challenge also had fun surprises like having three of the top MOF chefs serve as mentors/sous chefs during the first day of preparation. Not Monsters of Fashion, or Mullets on Fish, or Muppets over Finns, or Bad MoF . MOF is a title given to the best of the best – Best Craftsman of France. The chefs geeked out and the MOFs (Jacques Torres, Sebastian Canonne, and Stephane Treand) had some fun. The next part brought in the ousted chefs to help. Randomly, Macho got Vanarin (who?), Matt got Megan and Hammer got Rebecca. Then Macho chose Orlando, Matt chose Carlos, and Hammer chose Amanda. So at least we got to see Amanda and Megan one last time – thanks Show.

And I guarantee that they were all praying to the God of Marshmallow Fluff that Baby Hands would stay on the sidelines. So say we all!


What's Hot on TV Tonight – Better Late Than Never

Yes, I know that in most places, what’s hot on TV tonight has come and gone. I couldn’t let this go without posting it. I had a family emergency that prevented me from posting this, but with it all prepared, I just had to get it out there and post it. Check out your other favorite shows at TV-Links.

1. The Talk. The guests today are Ana Gasteyer and Martina McBride. 1:00 PM CT CBS

2. The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Will Arnett, Anton Yelchin and Felicity JOnes, Lady Antebellum, and Landon Donovan are the guests today. Syndicated, check local listings.

3. 2011 World Series. Texas Rangers at St. Louis Cardinals. 6:30 PM CT Fox

4. Survivor: South Pacific One tribe makes an attempt at changing the way the game is going for them, and a contestant takes a big risk that shocks the others.. 7:00 PM CT CBS

5. The Middle. She looks for advice from Mike when she wears am embarrassing costume to a Halloween party, Frankie takes Brick’s social skills group trick-or-treating, and Axl and his friends want to pull of a prank. 7:00 PM CT ABC

6. Oprah’s Lifeclass. Maya Angelou is the guest tonight. 7:00 PM CT OWN

7. College Football. Connecticut at Pittsburgh. 7:00 PM CT ESPN

8. Suburgatory. Tessa’s costume reminds others of a recently departed neighbor, George tries to get Dallas to see that Halloween is supposed to be fun, and Dallas’ husband comes back home from a business trip. 7:30 PM CT ABC

9. America’s Next Top Model. The models come up with their own signature fragrance that they launch while posing in a bathtub at a public event, and tension is up during a photo shoot with the models posting as reality stars. Kathy Griffin guest judges. 8:00 PM CT CW

10. Ghost Hunters. Jason and Grant are investigating with guest star Meredith Vieira (Who Wants To Be a Millionaire?) and they decide they should go down a flight of stairs to get an area where a child was kept. While Jason and Grant’s main concern is connecting with any potential ghosts, Meredith is concerned with the fact that with them being in the basement, someone could lock them in from the upper level. While she is concerned with making sure they have a way out, she also expresses a desire to see the matron that evidently chained her child in the basement. 8:00 PM CT Syfy

11. Work of Art: The Next Great Artist. The prize is something everyone is after, a spread in Entertainment Weekly Magazine, giving the winning artist amazing exposure (11 million readers!). With a great prize, of course comes great risk. A double elimination in this “Pop” challenge has the artists extra nervous this week. 8:00 PM CT Bravo

12. Man v. Food Nation. Adam goes to cattle country for the best cuts of meat, then helps DJ with a Pig Wing challenge. 8:00 PM CT Travel Channel

13. Happy Endings. Brad and Jane housesit in the suburbs, and the others attend a warehouse party. 8:30 PM CT CW

14. Revenge. The Graysons start to not trust their head of security after the surfacing of an incriminating surveillance video, Emily and Tyler’s tension comes to a head, and the Porter boys make their moves. 9:00 PM CT ABC

15. Psych. Shawn and Gust believe Lassiter’s girlfriend committed murder. 9:00 PM CT USA

16. American Horror Story. The between the living and the dead becomes less obvious, and the Harmons get decorating advice from the house’s old residents. 9:00 PM CT FX

17. South Park. Randy and Sharon go to see a hit musical. 9:00 PM CT Comedy Central

18. Fact or Faked. The team is putting together another project right outside of Area 51 and are discussing sling-loads, where military aircraft use a sling below the craft to transport various resources. They’re trying to see if they can create a sling-load to look similar to what they saw in UFO footage. 9:00 PM CT Syfy

19. American Hoggers. In the first half hour, a massive boar terrorizes an elderly woman, and the family doesn’t agree on the method, old or new. In the second half hour, Jerry’s health comes into question during a golf course hog hunt, and a pecan orchard is overrun with hogs. 9:00 PM CT A&E

20. Top Chef: Just Desserts. It’s down to the final three and the competitors that are left are prepared to fight for the $100,000 prize and title of Top Chef. With the last challenge in their sights, the finalists think about what brought them to the competition and why it’s so important that they win. Fierce competitor Chris Hanmer thinks about his wife and baby that he left behind in order to chase his dream. Will all the hard work pay off, making it worth the time? Which chef’testant will be named Top Chef and who will go home defeated? 9:00 PM CT Bravo

21. The Joy Behar Show. Toni Braxton, Michelle Collins, and China Okasi are the guests tonight. 9:00 PM CT HLN

22. The Real World. Sam gets bad news, Zach causes a rift with a comment, Zach and Ashley bond, and the roommates begin working at The House of Blues. 9:00 PM CT MTV

23. Nick Swardson’s Pretend Time. 9:00 PM CT Comedy Central

24. Conan. Jane Lynch, Paul Scheer, and Allen Stone are the guests tonight. 10:00 PM CT TBS

25. Late Show with David Letterman. The guests tonight include Justin Timberlake and The Civil Wars. 10:35 PM CT CBS

Project Runway 9, Episode 11 – Who Will Go to Fashion Week


Last week on Project Runway, the designers faced the final challenge to see who would go on to Fashion Week. They visited Governor’s Island for inspiration. Laura was sent home while the other four were told to make collections and bring them back to New York.

On the runway, Heidi begins by congratulating the four finalists. She then spells out the rules: Everybody will make a collection, but only three will go on to Fashion Week. They will have a budget of $9,000.00 towards a ten-piece collection. They will have five weeks to make said collection.

WHAT?!?!

Five measly weeks?! In earlier seasons, the designers used to get several months to put their collections together. Those months gave the designers time to process everything they’d learned during the earlier competitions, polish existing techniques, learn new ones, and experiment. The experiments weren’t always successful, as witness Season 4’s Chris March and his use of human hair, but they were often interesting.

A five-week prep time just about kills all of that. Five weeks means that the designers will have to crank out two outfits a week. They won’t have time to play around or experiment. In the interest of getting everything done on time, at least some of them will retreat to their comfort zones, so they can make things they know they can make quickly. A short prep time like this also greatly increases the chances of rush jobs.

The designers go back to Atlas to pack up. Anya confides to Kimberly that she didn’t unpack everything because she didn’t expect to stay very long. She’d assumed her inexperience would make her an early casualty. Both she and Kimberly are amazed that they’ve made it this far. All of the designers are excited to be going home and working on their collections.

Three weeks later, Tim starts visiting the designers at their homes. He starts with Kimberly, who lives in White Plains, Maryland. He admires her home and studio. Kimberly tells Tim that she’d grown up in Brooklyn and is thus using Brooklyn– both the Brooklyn of her childhood and the current one– as her inspiration. She’s urban and wants her collection to reflect that. Said collection includes a leather jackets and a lot of brightly-colored clothes. Tim calls the collection “very Kimberly.” He encourages her to take risks and “wow” the judges.

Kimberly then introduces Tim to her sister, her sister’s family, and two close friends. Kimberly’s niece, a toddler, has been going around the house saying, “Tim Gunn. Work.” Kimberly tells us that her sister and friends have been very supportive. She also talks about her late mother, who she believes is the source of her fashion sense. She wants to make her mother proud. Kimberly also notes that if she won, she would be the first Africa-American winner in Project Runway history. (She’s right. The only other minority winner was Season 2’s Chloe Dao, who is of Vietnamese ancestry. Blacks like Mychael Knight of Season 3 and Korto Momolu of Season 5 have made the finals, but have yet to win.)

Then it’s off to Trinidad to see Anya. She takes Tim on a boat ride, and tells how excited she is to show him where she comes from. She then takes him home to meet her two brothers, who are her biggest fans. The brothers tell Tim that when Anya was in pageants, people used to talk about how beautiful she was. Now they talk about how talented she is. Anya had a third brother, who had died at 18. She feels the need to live life fully, since he didn’t get to. She’s named her clothing line after him, Pilar.

Anya then takes Tim to her studio, where she’s hung up pictures of Tobago, which she visited shortly after getting back home. She will use it as her inspiration. Unfortunately, she hasn’t done anything beyond pick out some lovely fabrics as she’s apparently been afflicted with the designer’s equivalent of writer’s block. Oh, not good. Anya’s muse picked a rotten time to desert her. Tim reminds her that she can’t have anybody help her construct the clothes. He advises her to use muslin to play around with shapes and jump-start her creativity.

Tim then heads back to New York to look in on Viktor, who had gone to Guadalajara to honor the anniversary of his brother’s death. This makes it unanimous: all four of the finalists have buried at least one close relative. Viktor’s collection is inspired by Guadalajara. Tim is impressed by the fact that Viktor has a clear vision — but less impressed with some of the pieces, which he doesn’t get. Tim admires a jacket, but dislikes a dress. He warns Viktor not to overthink.

Viktor then introduces Tim to his lover, David. They had met at a bar and were immediately attracted to each other. Tim asks David his opinion of the collection, since he’d also gone to Guadalajara. Viktor tells us that he’s the youngest of seven children, and that his parents had come from Mexico. They’d moved to New York when they were in their 30’s. Viktor feels like he’s getting a chance to fulfill the American Dream.


The Amazing Race, Oct. 23 – Smiling Through Elephant Poop


Last week was a great leg of The Amazing Race. It wasn’t predictable at all, until the last few minutes when it just took on the feel of a non-elimination leg. Twins Liz and Marie survived coming in last place, but will now have to complete a Speed Bump during tonight’s leg of the Race. Whether or not they succeed mainly depends on two things, if there will be some type of equalizer of time, such as a flight out of Thailand, and how great the time difference is between them and the team that came in second to last, Bill and Cathi. 

The first team to leave Ko Panyi, Thailand is once again Andy and Tommy, departing at 10:07 AM. Their clue tells them to use local transportation to a river, then travel by elephant up the river to get their next clue. Andy talks about his faith in God being very important both to himself and to Tommy. On his belt, he has written “Proverbs 19:2,” which he explains is “Do not have zeal without knowledge, or be hasty and miss the way.” Tommy’s reads “I Thes 5:16,” which he explains is “Be joyful always; pray continually.” They want to run the Race with a lot of joy. Andy feels God opened up the door, and they’re just grateful to be there.

Andy and Tommy reach the elephants and ride together on the back of one. Andy never dreamed elephants could be this nimble. When the Race is over, he’d like to buy an elephant, as they can do some serious four-wheeling. 

Justin and Jennifer leave nearly an hour later at 11:01 AM. Jeremy and Sandy leave at 11:44 AM, and Laurence and Zac one minute after that. Laurence is proud of his son and all he’s accomplished at such a young age. Yet he recognizes every young person wants to be seen as wise beyond their years, but they don’t always have the wisdom for that. He knows as the father, that Zac will always heed what he says. This doesn’t bode well for this leg. Either Zac will refuse to listen, or Laurence is going to be wrong. He tells Zac now they have to be sure they stick to the clue and travel by local transport. This is after they messed up the clue and received a penalty a few weeks earlier.

Jennifer is happy to be riding on the elephant and says, “I feel like I’m in the circus.” Ernie and Cindy leave at 11:52 AM. She knows they grew up in very different environments. Academics just wasn’t pushed as much to him as it was in her family. He went through life being a B student, and wonders why someone like Cindy would even love him as much as she does. He wants to prove during the Race that he can take it to the next level.

Amani and Marcus are the next to leave, one minute later. Andy and Tommy finally reach the next clue while riding on the elephant.  They find a Roadblock. One person from each team will need to follow the sound of the music which will take them to a waterfall with a traditional Thai floutist. They’ll search at the site for their next clue. 

The snowboarders do rock, paper, scissors, and Andy is the loser, meaning he will do this task. He dives into the water and finds the floutist right away, but isn’t sure where to look for the clue. He goes to the spot in the water directly in front of the musician, and finds the clue right away. Wrapped in burlap is a ceramic koi fish that when broken bears a clue telling them to travel to a local shop where they will disassemble a spirit house, then deliver all the pieces to a temple to get the next clue.

Bill and Cathi leave at 12:22 PM, while Justin and Jennifer have reached the next clue on the back of the elephant. The circus is over, as Justin decides to do this Roadblock. Justin pokes around in the water with a stick, saying he’s not finding anything. 

Jeremy/Sandy and Laurence/Zac arrive at the elephants, as Sandy says she loves her Dumbo. I think she means the elephant and not Jeremy. Justin keeps looking for his clue, and finally finds it, while Jennifer appears to be having an intimate moment with the elephant. Ernie/Cindy and Amani/Marcus arrive at the elephants, with Marcus being a little nervous to go up the hills riding atop the elephant’s back.

Andy and Tommy arrive at the local shop and look for a spirit house. They try to take a mental note of how the house is put together in case they end up putting it back together in the end. They get it taken apart quickly and are on their way to deliver it. Sandy is not enjoying the elephant ride, being “a little scared.” 

Andy and Tommy get the next clue and find a second Roadblock. I don’t remember ever seeing a second Roadblock before, but I could be wrong. If you remember one, email me at LauraBelle@realityshack.com and let me know. Whichever team member didn’t do the first Roadblock must reassemble the spirit house, just as the snowboarders were assuming. Tommy must do it this time, which Andy acknowledges is his friend getting stuck with the hard part. Tommy talks about them being Christians, making it interesting for them to work with the Buddhists and their temples. Faith might come into play here, as he has no idea where some of the spirit house pieces go. 


Q and A with Ving Rhames of Syfy’s “Zombie Apocalypse”


Veteran actor Ving Rhames brings his talent to the new Syfy original movie, Zombie Apocalypse. With the success of AMC’s The Walking Dead, the zombie genre is here to stay. You really can’t keep the dead down. Rhames has appeared in over one hundred films including Pulp Fiction, Con Air and many more. He is multi-talented and often portrays a badass in his films. He is very smart and savvy when it comes to choosing great roles that fit his personality. Now Rhames takes on the undead for Syfy. Previously taking on the undead in the film Dawn of The Dead, he is no stranger to the world of zombies. He recently took part in a conference call to discuss his latest roll and his long career in film and television.

Rhames was born in New York City and studied at the Julliard School of Drama, then began his career in New York theatre. His first appearance was on Broadway in the play “The Winter Boys” in 1984. He hit the big time with his first TV role in Go Tell It On the Mountain, and his first film role being in Native Son. He won a Golden Globe winner for his work in the miniseries Don King: Only in America.

“Zombie Apocalypse” takes place after a zombie plague has wiped out ninety percent of the American population. A small group of survivors must fight their way cross-country to a possible refuge on the island of Catalina. Rhames didn’t want to disclose too much about the film or his character, but said there are a few people who do survive this massive catastrophe where Zombies have taken over. The story goes into the characters’ friendships and how they all work together to survive under such stressful circumstances

Rhames received a call from his agent regarding the project. After reading the script, he immediately said that he was in and wanted to do the film. He was attracted to the role because of his previous experience with Dawn of the Dead. He loved bonding with his fellow actors and appreciated that the film combined fantasy-fiction and fun. He felt it was all about chemistry and making a few new friends. He needed to be in sledgehammer-wielding shape, and prepared by working out four to five days a week. Not that he wasn’t already in good shape thanks to his martial arts training, being a black belt in karate.

There were several scenes that Rhames enjoyed filming, and one scene in particular that stood out for him was between him and Lesley-Ann Brandt. He shows a lot of compassion and protects her character throughout the entire film. There was great chemistry between the cast as they dealt with a lot of different conditions in the movie. It’s very different when the characters are humans and zombies.

Rhames has played a variety of diverse characters and over the years and has maintained a fascinating career by taking on different roles to show his versatility. His dream roles would be portraying Dr. Martin Luther King or Paul Robeson. He has battled everything from sharks to zombies, but his most difficult adversaries were piranhas. His character Henry in Zombie Apocalypse will not have to take on any piranhas, but will do some serious battling with the undead. He takes on the role of the protector and enforcer in the movie.

Rhames still applies what he has learned at Julliard to each one of his roles. His includes that in his advice to future actors. He feels it’s important to make sure they receive the proper training. He grew up watching Dustin Hoffman, Al Pacino and Robert DeNiro, and considers them to be the best.

Rhames appreciates his fans and works with a group called Developing Options, which helps with gang intervention. He believes he is doing what he is meant to be doing with his life. He continues to grow and studies his craft by working.

Catch Rhames take on the zombies of the world in Syfy’s original movie, Zombie Apocalypse, premiering October 29 at 9/8c.

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Scare Tactics, October 17 – Maggots and Flesh Eating Plants


As always, Scare Tactics features an accomplice, a victim and the infamous freak-out, as well as host Tracy Morgan who offers the comedy and fun witty commentary for the show. The first prank this week features Rama, who believes he is being featured on a random show called “Clean My Crib,” in which the house features a creepy butler. His friend Joel is happy to set him up, because he believes that Rama is worried about everything from Global warming to life in general, so why not scare the hell out of him?

As Rama and the producer examine the house, they are free to walk around after butler Egore releases them. Rama runs into a room they believe a spirit is in, yet it looks more like a tornado went through it. There are maggots on the floor. They should call Mary Maids or ever maybe contact Hoarders. As the butler reappears, he wants them to meet his deceased master, Rama and the producer freak out. While the butler talks to his master, he begins shouting, “Are you scared?” Rama tries to jump out a window. Joel finally comes out, and Rama calms down a bit and realizes he has been set up for Scare Tactics.”

The next prank features a brother and sister; you have to love those brothers and sisters. Kayla is setting her brother up, yet brother Danny is setting her up at the same time. They all go into a lab and prepare to investigate a strange plant, and the so-called scientist is giving both brother and sister directions.

It makes you wonder why these people would not seek out new friends. The producer is giving Kayla advice, and Danny is receiving advice as well. Kayla and Danny are preparing to be attacked by a fake alien named Crista along with a death rod. Do aliens even have death rods? The scientist is trying to get them to communicate with the aliens. Kayla is being too nonchalant and silly; I would not have believed her at all.

The scientist freaks out and goes over some more information and they get tied up. Kayla begins screaming, and her brother comes running in, as well as the fake alien who her brother attacks and then stabs, or does he? Of course not, because he is on Scare Tactics. While the fake alien lays bleeding to death, both sister and brother realize in frustration that they are both on Scare Tactics. They ought to make a Christmas card for their friends and family!

You don’t want to drink the blue juice; you never want to even consider drinking the blue foaming or smoking blue juice. Tarek is next. His friend Naail got him a job as a doorman in an exclusive club, and they are always the worst! Tarek watches the strange bottles sit on the counter, and also people moving around the club.

This secret club influenced The Stepford Wives, yet they make a Cocoon reference. His boss takes him into the back room and ask just how old he thinks he is. Are we filming Death Becomes Her? Tarek makes a run for it and literally goes through the wall shouting, “Are you crazy?”

The last one features Giancarlo and Marco who was asked if he wanted to prank his brother, and of course he said yes! Giancarlo is taken into a makeshift lab and Giancarlo and Carissa the lab assistant help him put the seeds into his future alien flesh-eating plant! What a wonderful world. Of course Carissa is one of the nosy people who have to touch everything and look at everything, so now she is contaminated.

Carissa’s lungs are burning, and she is turning red. So why is Giancarlo still standing there? Run like hell! Carissa is talking away, as the scientist gives some advice to Giancarlo that the plant is a flesh-eating one. He looks upset, very upset, he and his fellow co-worker. Tony, one of the lab techs, gives Carissa a shot, and she drops over. Carissa is red and blotchy as she drops with her make-believe flesh-eating disease.

The lab tech suggests ending it, saying his life is over. She then announces how she is ending it, by telling him she is going to put him on Scare Tactics. His fear number is all the way to a forty.

As usual, the people fall for this insanity, but it is funny and smart. Tracy Morgan makes for a great host, and he announces before the show ends to make sure the audience watches their backs, and to be sure they can trust their sneaky friends. Happy Hauntings. Make sure to watch next week’s all new episode of Scare Tactics on the Syfy channel, Monday at 9/8c. And see if Tracy Morgan is coming for you.

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