The Amazing Race Season 27 - Episode 6 Recap
My Tongue Doesn't Even Twist That Way
By Kim Hollis and David Mumpower
November 2, 2015

There's something so baller about the fact that Kelsey is wearing a Kelsey hat.

Previously on The Amazing Race, #TheGreenTeam almost noticed that a team was feuding with them, #TeamTexas discovered that it’s unsatisfying to feud with a team that is unaware of your ire, and #TeamAlabama learned that if you give them a free pass to drive to the finish mat, they can beat #TheGreenTeam by almost 50 steps.

Meanwhile, every other team that wasn’t #TheReporters performed so poorly that a three-team elimination would have been completely valid. It was legitimately one of the worst run legs in the history of the show, and that’s really saying something. We can’t remember a recent season where so many teams struggled so much with such simple tasks. Suffice to say that if you aren’t in Green, aren’t from Texas, and aren’t a news anchor, you’re not going to win this year.

Well, you might, but you won’t deserve it.

We begin tonight’s leg at beautiful Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe. Our first question is whether #TeamAlabama is delusional enough to feel like they achieved something by getting first place. Normally, teams will talk about how big of a threat they are while never quite realizing that they owe it all to dumb luck.

James Earl, or as we like to call him, “The Good One,” pleasantly surprises us by saying that he believes they owe it all to being kind to other people. His mother tempts fate by point blank asking Josh of #TeamTexas why they gave her and James Earl the Express Pass. He politely mumbles something about connections and getting along and whatever. She expresses relief, because she had feared that it was because she was old. Josh accepts her hug while quietly thinking it was exactly for that reason, and also because she and James Earl are terrible at the Race.

Anyway, Denise & James Earl will be the first team to start at 5:40 a.m., and the clue doesn’t send them to a new location. Instead, we’ll begin with a Roadblock – “Who wants to get their heart pumping?” At this point, any change in the Race format is good, but on the other hand, watching a bunch of these teams bungle through a challenge first thing in the morning does not inspire a lot of confidence or excitement.

One person will have to jump from the Victoria Falls Bridge. When they have completed the jump, they’ll check their heart rate on their Fitbit and write it down to turn in. Ordinarily, we detest this sort of product placement, but we like our own Fitbits so much that we’ll overlook this one. Also, it’s a much more natural placement than many others we’ve seen. Apparently, we’re just now learning that they’re doing this throughout each leg of the race, and will use this information at some point later on (probably the Final 3, we’re guessing).

And… we pretty quickly realize that it doesn’t matter what time anyone is leaving, because the Falls don’t open until 7 a.m. Denise & James Earl say that everyone will catch up to them by the time the rope drops.

Of the first three teams, Denise, Diana and Tanner will take on the challenge for their teams. Denise seems fine with it, Diana is excited and Tanner is white-knuckle terrified. “I’m going to cry,” he says. We’ve learned in earlier legs that he is deathly afraid of heights, so it’s going to be a brutal Roadblock for him.

Soon, even the braver Diana says that she thinks she might “pee herself.” When we see the distance to the bottom from a bird’s eye view, it definitely looks… daunting. We’re reminded that she’s electing to do these challenges because she wants to overcome her own fear of heights.

Denise’s heart rate jumps from 93 to 135, which tells us she definitely got a thrill from it even if her face was sour the whole way down. With the fear factor portion of the show out of the way, #TeamAlabama’s next clue directs them to fly to Paris, France. Once there, they’ll need to make their way to Aérodrome Museé Volant Salis.

We’ll give Tanner credit and say that he actually handled the jump like a champ. Joey, Krista, Rick and Chris all do the jump for their respective teams. After Chris goes, Logan notes that – whew! – Chris is still alive. She’d had some sort of vision or something that he wouldn’t make it and it was freaking her out. She apparently really does care whether he lives or dies (but probably still wants him to shut up).

All seven teams are on the same flight to Paris, so that Roadblock was completely useless. Upon arrival at the airport, Justin & Diana are the first team off the plane and sprint to the train that will take them to their destination. They are the only team to make the train, which means they’re going to have a 20-minute lead. Rick from #ChacAttack laments this turn of events, which might seem whiny until you think about the fact that he never gets to be in the lead group.

At the Aérodrome Museé, they receive yet another Roadblock clue that asks, “Who’s feeling Revolutionary?” Team members will go up in an awesome-looking Boeing Stearman plane. While flying over the countryside, they’ll have to look for the three words that best represent the 1789 French Revolution. Of course, if you know your history, you’ll know without even seeing the clues that these words are “Liberté, égalité and fraternité.” The plane will go for a loop, so it’s going to be super exciting.

The clue also says that the person who previously did the Victoria Falls jump cannot do this Roadblock. That means Justin gets to go up, and he has the time of his life while obviously having no trouble whatsoever sighting his three French Revolutionary words. While he’s up in the air, the other teams are arriving from the train station, and Joey is griping at Kelsey to run. She… does not.

If you’re wondering how long it would take for one of Logan or Chris to say “shut up,” we actually manage to make it 13 whole minutes into the episode before Logan barks it at Chris.

Now that #TheGreenTeam has flown, the next clue directs them to go to Square Louise Michel, which the camera shows us is right in front of the famous landmark Sacré Coeur.

It’s probably significant that when Kelsey reads her clue, she notes that you only have one chance to say the three French Revolution words correctly. If you miss them, you have to fly again. We’re guessing someone messes this up – probably Logan or Tiffany, though it could be foreshadowing for our first ever Kelsey slip-up.

Only three people can go up at a time, so Logan, Tiffany and Josh are in the air, while James Earl, Cindy and Kelsey are waiting their turn.

And, lo and behold, Logan is unable to find her third word. Right about now is where we note that Chris was trying to tell her to be really careful and watch for her clues when she told him to shut up. You know how great couples bring out the best in each other? We now know what the opposite of that is.

Hoping to achieve a little separation, Justin & Diana try a cab to their next location, but soon realize it won’t work for them. Their cab driver dumps them on the side of the road and they have to wait for another one to come pick them up.

Tiffany and Josh have no trouble getting their next clue (although Tiffany butchers the French language), but Logan… well, at least she’s sheepish. “Chris is going to kill me,” she says. She now has to wait for three teams to go ahead of her, so yeah. He may do just that.

Now that they’re back at the train station, Justin & Diana are arguing about the taxi problem. It’s the first time they’ve shown any signs of strife, and we wonder if Diana might still be feeling stressed out from the jump from the Falls. Perhaps she just needs a moment to get over it.

#TheCheerleaders and #TeamTexas go the wrong direction for the train, so #TheGreenTeam’s lead is perfectly comfortable. Kelsey, James Earl and Cindy have no trouble with their French Revolution clues, so all five of them will be on the next train together. Logan has put herself and Chris way behind – and in fact, they miss the train the other teams have boarded.

Now that they’ve gotten to their next location, Justin & Diana do indeed seem to have settled down, which is good because it’s time for them to do their Detour. They’ll choose between “Drops Mic” or “Bust a Crab.” For “Drops Mic,” we’re told that Paris has a robust hip-hop community. Teams will have to perform a rap from legendary artist Posse (we think – closed captioning calls him Possum). Teams will be judged on pronunciation, rhythm and vibe. If they can “master” all three, they’ll receive their next clue.

La Coupole is the world’s most famous brasserie, best known for the royal platter, which includes an awful lot of complicated seafood. Teams have to shuck, crack and decorate the various types of seafood correctly. Seems kind of hard, but then again rapping might not be in a lot of teams’ skillset (*cough cough Denise & James Earl cough cough*).

Diana wants to do the seafood challenge, but Justin says they should go with rap. She’s still a little petulant even as she admits that Mic is totally in his wheelhouse. She snipes at him a little bit more, but he doesn’t seem too phased.

None of the other teams seem to realize that the Fantome Blanc they need to find in the square is a man, as they all run right past him. In the meantime, Justin & Diana have reached the rappers and argue the whole way through the learning of the tune. Diana doesn’t feel like she can get the French lyrics right, but she also thinks it’s a bad move to leave. Basically, she just wants to be mad at Justin. They’re in first place, but she’s having a bad day. Up to now, she’s been the level-headed person who keeps her team on an even keel.

Tanner & Josh are the first to find the fantome, and the other teams follow. #TeamTexas and #ChacAttack choose the seafood challenge, while the others choose rap. Logan & Chris are only just now boarding their train to take them to the square.

With their first attempt at their rap, Diana seems like she’s starting to have a little fun at least, but she does mess up. Then again, when Posse/Possum criticizes her rhythm, she backslides into pout mode. They miss again on their second try, but it’s super close (and probably overly picky). “I’m a white girl – I don’t have vibes!” Diana tells Posse/Possum. The third try gets it done, and Posse/Possum hands them a postcard with their clue.

Tanner & Josh are learning how to shuck oysters, while Kelsey & Joey and Tiffany & Krista get started with their rap. Denise & James Earl… seem to be lost.

#ChacAttack have also arrived at the restaurant to start the seafood challenge, and Rick says, “I’ve never done this before, but you know, controlling a knife isn’t too different whether it’s oysters or people. I’ve gotta be more accurate with people.” We’re sure all his patients are feeling really comfortable after hearing that remark.

Justin & Diana pick up their clue as we gaze on the Eiffel Tower (la Tour Eiffel, if you prefer) in the distance. It tells them to search for Phil “across from the monument where the first team will ‘triumph.’” Obviously, Phil’s going to be standing near the Arc de Triomphe. This episode is where having a minor in French really pays off!

We’re back at the rap challenge, where Kelsey is destroying the French language so much it makes our ears hurt. Then, Krista and Tiffany step up to the stage and reveal that it does in fact seem to be Posse that we’re dealing with. They are shockingly amazing at this and get it on their first try. #TheReporters are demoralized, as well they should be, because they’re allowing the worst team in the race to beat them.

#TeamAlabama is still wandering the streets of France aimlessly.

Speaking of demoralized, Tanner & Josh are aggravated when Cindy & Rick finish the seafood challenge ahead of them. The guys say that they’re not detail-oriented, while the fact that Rick is a doctor means he must be. It gets worse, though, because when the guys turn in their seafood display, they’re told to try again.

Logan & Chris are headed to their Detour, and Denise & James Earl are about to completely lose the lead they had on that last-place team.

On their eighth try, Kelsey & Joey complete their rap (though still not very well). “I’m never rapping again,” says Joey. He’s way too funny and likes animals too much to be with Kelsey, we think.

At last, Denise & James Earl have found the bridge where they will rap. “The words – they were just funky words!” says Denise. These French people should speak the English language like the good Lord intended.

Tanner & Josh figure out their mistake and are allowed to proceed. They’re walking out just as Logan & Chris are arriving.

We get a tiny bit more bickering from Justin & Diana while they search for Phil, and the editing adorably tries to make it seem as if someone besides them might finish in first.

It’s Denise & James Earl’s first attempt at the rap and they fail hard. But they’re okay for now because Logan & Chris can’t get it right, either.

Actually, if you like montages of people being terrible at rap, this portion of the episode is totally for you. Most people, including us, do not, so it’s actually quite excruciating.

Logan & Chris get their seafood tray right on the second try while they mumble something about details, something that isn’t their strong suit so far.

The show finally gives up the pretense that anyone other than #TheGreenTeam will finish in first place, and they are checked in as Team #1. Phil sucks completely, because instead of giving them a prize, he tells them they’re starting the next leg of the race. And we know now that we’re looking at a “to be continued” once again. We haven’t even had a non-elimination leg yet, but really, the “to be continueds” are far, far more annoying.

Phil does tell Justin & Diana to keep their heart rate cards handy because they will need them in the next leg of the race. He also tells Justin to be nice to Diana, who says he will and apologizes.

Against all odds, #TheCheerleaders are Team #2. They’re thrilled about it and thrilled to still be racing.

The fact that Phil mentions the heart rate cards again to Kelsey & Joey means that some team isn’t going to have theirs in the next leg of the race. Logan & Chris, we’re looking at you.

Denise & James Earl are on their 15th attempt, but what does it matter? They’ll still be racing after they check in with Phil.

What a useless leg.