The Amazing Race 12 Episode 1

Donkeys Have Souls, Too

By Reagen Sulewski

November 7, 2007

We were certain that our awesome head kerchiefs would carry us to the win!

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Ari and Staella, co-workers from LA. Although they're not specific about this, Ari's pretty obviously gay and apparently still in the stage where he thinks that it's outrageous that he's a big queen. Note to gay men – listen, it's great that you're gay, but we've all seen this before. It's 2007 – we're not really shocked by bitchy behavior from gay dudes anymore. These two seem to be seeking out villain status.

Shana and Jennifer, friends from Los Angeles (they certainly cast their net wide for teams this time). I think we can go ahead and dub them Team Hilton, as the two bottle-blondes are apparently all about the clothes. They, like Marianna and Julia, plan to flirt their way through the race, and somewhere Gloria Steinem is weeping. But just because this strategy has failed for every other all-female team before is no reason to think it can't work now, right?

Finally, TK and Rachel, a couple from the LA area (did they just grab people walking by the studio??). TK may call himself that, but he's actually Axl Rose ca. 1992 and still has hopes of releasing Chinese Democracy while he's still relevant.

The race starts at the Playboy Mansion – which I wouldn't be surprised to find out that Shana and Jennifer have been to before – though it could really just be any other estate for all they use it for. Phil sends them off and it's the mad dash to their bags and the first clue, which sends them to Shannon, Ireland.


There's a small logistical problem, as all the vehicles are parked in a one-lane driveway, and Nicolas and Donald are in the first one, taking their sweet time, counting their money and blocking the path. That's a good way to make friends right off the bat. Nicolas, the big dork, doesn't even seem to realize that the other teams are honking their horns at him, and starts honking back in "celebration". Finally they get a clue and the turtle race gets going.

The first secret task is as always to not get lost on the way to the first airport, which leads to our first split in teams, as about half go the wrong way, including some of the LA teams. Really, there's not a lot of drama in this, but it does lead to a clip where Kynt uses the phrase "Oh my Goth", so that's something right there.

The teams are given two flights to catch, the first on British Airways, and the second on Aer Lingus. The scramble and general chaos to get there puts Lorena and Jason, Shana and Jennifer, Kate and Pat, Nathan and Jennifer and Marianna and Julia on the BA flight, which leaves first and gives those teams a 45 minute lead. There are a few teams that had a really shaky start in this, the simplest of tasks they'll have all race, and really need to pull their acts together to survive. Shedding time in the airport parking lot is bad news.

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