The Amazing Race Season 27 - Episode 2 Recap
Get in There and Think Like a Dog
By Kim Hollis and David Mumpower
October 5, 2015

Farewell to the seemingly most fun team this season. We're sorry we doomed you.

Previously on The Amazing Race, 11 teams started the competition. The least annoying 10 teams advanced. A couple of heinous people who fittingly work at TMZ finished in last place, and there’s a life lesson in there somewhere. They’re too busy obsessing on Kardashians to figure out what it is, though.

The other fascinating part of the first leg involved the team that finished in ninth place, Justin & Diana. In what will be the fairest challenge of the entire race, the self-proclaimed Green Team easily bested all their opponents to earn the only tickets for the first flight out of California. After that, they caught a brutal series of bad breaks.

First, their flight was delayed. Then, the second plane containing everyone else arrived early, switching a half-hour advantage into one that was basically a wash by the time they reached the taxis outside the airport. They still persisted and positioned themselves to win the Express Pass by reaching that challenge ahead of everyone else. There, the local worker informed them that the wind was whipping too much to perform a dangerous aerial task safely.

#TheGreenTeam had to return to where they started, and it’s fairly impressive that after all that, they still finished ahead of two other teams. Justin & Diana may be really good at this game. Alternately, they may have the worst luck of anybody in several seasons. Either way, they look like they’ll make good television. Also, Justin’s a crier, so that’s fun.

The episode begins with #TheGreenTeam taking this opportunity to finally greet the other teams. They had missed getting to know them on the first leg because they were on a separate flight and then so far behind that they didn’t have time. It’s probably a good time to note that Justin & Diana are getting an awful lot of face time so far this season. That’s either a good sign for their longevity in the race or means that we’ll be seeing them eliminated tonight.

Tanner & Josh are going to be first to leave Rio at 9:40 a.m. They teams are now headed to Buenos Aires, home of the current Pope. They offer a few kernels of wisdom. They note that it’s great being in first place – way to go out on a limb, guys. Then, they unironically quote Ricky Bobby, who seems like a strange choice for a life coach.

#TheTrackStars Jazmine & Danielle are just four minutes behind them, followed by Cindy & Rick and then Denise & James Earl. First to fourth place is separated by only 16 minutes, so it should be interesting once they arrive at the airport. James Earl takes this moment to complain about his mother some more, but does note that so far, they’re getting along pretty great.

In the end, the separation of teams doesn’t matter at all, because they’re all going to be bunched at the airport for a plane taking off at 8:25 p.m. While they wait for the plane, they spend their time researching the church where the pope was baptized. Justin & Diana work with Denise & James Earl to determine the answer, and set an agreement to not share the information with anyone else.

Immediately, James Earl goes over to the meatheads and gives him the info, obviously angling for Tanner & Josh’s second half Express Pass. #ThePaparazzi happen to be standing there, too, so they’re also writing it down. Naturally, this really annoys Justin, who was the one who figured out the location in the first place. He then demonstrates his weak point, the social game, by going over and busting James Earl’s chops in front of the other teams. So we have two mistakes going here – James Earl’s inability to keep his word and Justin’s need to be in the face of the other players about it. Tanner & Josh, of course, side with James Earl and say that Justin is annoying.

After the teams land, there is the normal jostling for position, but we bet the church isn’t even going to be open anyway. Still, it matters, because the teams have to take a number upon arrival. Justin & Diana will be admitted to the church first, which irritates the meatheads.

A kindly priest hands the Racers their clues, and they’ll now be doing their Detour. They’ll either go with Carteneros or Fletero. Phil describes the rules for Carteneros first. Ten thousand people collect cardboard around the city each day as a way to make their living, and teams must mimic this activity by picking up 100 kilograms of cardboard and turning it in for their next clue. Fletero requires teams to transport a valuable statue to the other side in the truck. While one teammate directs the driver, the other will be bouncing around in the back of the truck. If the statue arrives at the location intact, it must be displayed at a park to receive their next clue. It sounds like Carteneros is the easier one if more labor intensive.

Moments after receiving their instructions, #ThePaparazzi blow up at each other. Chris wants to do the studio challenge, but Logan… well, we’re not sure what’s bothering her. She’s just angry. He agrees to switch to the cardboard recycling option, but she still mutters something under her breath. Anyway, this may be an early indication of some volatility on the part of Logan. We’ll see.

Kelsey & Joey are the only team that chooses to do the statue challenge. Everyone else is headed over to Carteneros. The catch is that there are only eight carts available, so someone is going to be left on the outs.

Since #TheReporters are the only ones to initially choose the statue challenge, let’s follow them for a few minutes. They arrive to choose their statue, which they dismember (really) and throw in the back of a truck. Then, they run to a nearby business to ask for directions to the park. The guy looks at them for a moment and says, “Uh, Google?” We laugh. Hard. Of course, our Racers aren’t equipped with iPhones, so the smart aleck allows them into his shop to use the computer and seek out their location.

There’s a randomness to the cardboard recycling challenge. The teams are running around to different recycling bins and must pull out only the cardboard from each one. Some bins have a lot of cardboard, while some have next to none. Justin & Diana find a cardboard mother lode, and may be close enough to 100 kilograms to be on their way. #TeamTexas squeezes their cart of cardboard past #TheGreenTeam, and Justin & Diana let it happen. Tanner & Josh may have the lead, they say, but they don’t appear to have enough cardboard. Based on how light the load seems to be, that’s probably correct.

Indeed, when Tanner & Josh have their cardboard weighed, it comes in at only 27 kilograms. They’ll have to go back out on the hunt.

Kelsey & Joey have their directions to the park and talk about how important attention to detail is in their jobs, so they’re going to see that carry through on the Race. That feels like some mean foreshadowing by the editors.

As Tanner & Josh are collecting more cardboard, they see Justin & Diana coming. “Weigh this. It’ll slow them down.” Basically, the meatheads weigh about 10 kilograms worth of stuff just to try to keep Justin & Diana from moving on. We… guess that’s a strategy of some kind? It appears that Tanner & Josh are developing an unhealthy obsession with #TheGreenTeam. This kind of vendetta has proven detrimental to teams in the past.

When Justin & Diana’s cardboard is finally weighed, they have 60 pounds (compared to Tanner & Josh’s 37). The other teams are starting to see their carts fill up as well.

Alex & Adam (#TheCousins) are the last team to get a cart, which means that Jazmine & Danielle will have to go back and do the statue challenge. BUT first they’re going to waste some time by wandering over to the truck to see if more carts are in that area.

While Justin & Diana are pulling cardboard from another jackpot bin, a kindly Argentinian shares a drink with Justin. “Mucho gusto, mi amigo,” he tells the man. Tanner & Josh have gotten themselves up to 85 kilograms.

“We’re definitely getting a tetanus shot after this,” says Jin as they dig in a smelly recycling bin.

With 110 pounds, Justin & Diana have finished the challenge. Their clue tells them to proceed to Bartolome Mitre. Justin wishes the meatheads good luck (in a nice way, not an obnoxious one), but we suppose that’s easy for him to do when he’s out in front.

Tanner & Josh are done next, and Jazmine & Danielle see them, asking them where the carts are. The guys tell them that their cart is down the road, and they can use it. We wonder if this will be considered against the rules. There isn’t any wa-wa music, so perhaps not.

Also away from the Detour are Logan & Chris, but Cindy & Rick are struggling with the challenge at only 59 pounds. Justin & Diana arrive for the first Roadblock, which asks, “Who wants to get sideways?” Diana will be up for this challenge, which is to perform the tango…while harnessed so that she’s dancing on a wall. Tanner takes it for their team, but he isn’t sure why. All he knows how to do is the two-step.

Despite the ominous editing, Kelsey & Joey have arrived at the proper location and will now assemble their statue. Alex & Adam knock over a motorcycle, and we hope it’s not like that scene in Every Which Way but Loose.

With Alex & Adam and Jazmine & Danielle completing the cardboard recycling, all teams are now either at or en route to the Tango on the wall. Diana fails on her first try, but it’s right at the beginning and can be put down to slight confusion about how the dance is supposed to proceed. Tanner fails, too, and Justin says that he’s pretty sure he’d be much better at this than everyone else. So humble, that one.

Logan fails on attempt #1, but Diana has succeeded on her second try. Justin cheers her on, and Tanner once again talks about how much he hates the guy. Unbridled enthusiasm for the Race sucks, man! (Also, we suspect Tanner & Josh are bad losers.)

Justin & Diana are directed to a Pit Stop at the Polo Stadium, and they take the cheerleader’s cab as the girls are arriving at the Tango. Needless to say, Tiffany & Krista are thrilled when they learn that the challenge involves dancing. Tanner has a second (and a third) fail, but Logan completes the dance. After four tries, Tanner succeeds, too. Cindy & Rick are out after she finishes in two attempts.

“For a person that doesn’t dance, that must have been really, really hard,” says cheerleader (and dancer) Krista. Cut to #TheCousins, who are clearly not cut out for this challenge. When Jazmine & Danielle arrive at the location, Denise & James Earl take their taxi to the Pit Stop. “You came out of my belly!” Denise shrieks. Ew.

The first team to arrive at the Pit Stop is Justin & Diana, who are obviously thrilled to win a trip to El Jadita in Morocco. Justin does cry a little, if you were wondering.

#ThePaparazzi, #TeamTexas and #TeamAlabama all arrive at the Polo Stadium at the same time, so it will be a foot race for positioning. Denise & James Earl think they’ve got it in the bag, but Phil yells, “Look behind you!” Josh & Tanner have passed them, but at a cost. Tanner has pulled his hamstring. The creepy mother/son take third place, and Logan & Chris are in fourth.

Krista, Kelsey and Jin all finish the dance on their first try. Nice job, guys. Cindy & Rick are checked in at the Pit Stop.

The final two teams are #TheCousins and #TheTrackStars. He’s struggling hard, but finally finishes the task. Jazmine & Danielle are in last, but they’re right behind the cousins as they finish the dance as well. Three teams are looking for taxis – Ernest & Jin, Alex & Adam and Jazmine & Danielle. There’s some real finish line drama in this leg.

All three are in their taxis at about the same time, while back at the Pit Stop Tiffany & Krista are checked in as team number six, followed quickly by Kelsey & Joey.

Ernest & Jin get a little bit lost in the stadium, but all three teams have arrived. It’s definitely a foot race. Jazmine & Danielle are checked in as team number eight (which means there was no penalty for using another team’s cart). Ernest & Jin are next, and they think they’re in last. Phil lets them cry for a minute, but finally gives them the news that they are still in the race.

That means that Alex & Adam are the last team to arrive, and also have been eliminated from the Race. It’s too bad. They were upbeat, fun guys and we were hoping to see a lot of them.

Next time, it looks like the meatheads will keep right on hating Justin, hopefully to their detriment. Their smug cockiness is getting old already.