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"Amazing Race"

By admin Published: March 22, 2009

Any episode that has a contestant referring to "aggressivity" is going to get some amusement points with me. But overall, it was kind of blah ...

The camel challenge seemed so straighforward, it was interesting only because of the obliviousness of the contestants; Mike and Mel ended up doing well simply because Mel paid attention to his surroundings and the instructions. But there was a lot of loose thinking in tonight's show; why was it so hard to think that the BRIGHT RED phones seemed significant under the tree? And Mark and Michael more than once demonstrated a lack of mastery of the game -- including where to go for a cab -- which makes their continued survival all the more remarkable.

Of course, they had the advantage that Christie and Jodi were at a disadvantage, having to add a speed bump to their other tasks. And it appeared that was all it took to keep them from winning, since even Phil noted they were close behind Mark and Michael at the finish. But Christie and Jodi, in last place again, ended up being sent home.

Tammy and Victor won again and remain a formidable team, but I am not convinced they are unstoppable. This still seems to be a field with a decent number of able competitors, and we have seen Tammy and Victor -- especially Victor -- make mistakes. I'm also interested in the show's indicating a compassion gap between TandV and the other teams. Where we got plenty of shots of other contestants distraught over the conditions they saw in India, Tammy and Victor did not appear to be significantly moved. They were more focused on the game -- while part of the game is the appreciation of different places and people.

Couple of things I wondered about: There was a specific mention of going through Moscow to get to India, but it seemed that the one flight for everyone went through Moscow anyway, since there was no hint that anyone did otherwise. And, on the camel-feeding challenge, if the rules said you had to use traditional implements to gather the hay, shouldn't there have been a penalty for players who didn't for part of the challenge -- or was it simply necessary (and smarter) to use the baskets at some point, even if you didn't for the whole challenge?

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