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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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The teams that were led astray are split between the ferry that's a half hour behind and the one that's 90 minutes behind, which seems like an actual penalty for once in these kinds of things. All in all, it's been an apparently trying day for all these teams – but for the teams in this last pack, it's only ten and a half legs or less to go for you! I'm betting less.

The next morning sees the teams heading back to the mainland, where they then have to navigate themselves around the Irish countryside to a far. The first three teams decide to work as a pack to get directions, and then Jason decides that he's going to lone wolf it. One problem: he and Lorena didn't get the actual directions. Lorena begs him to turn around and follow the teams that know where they're going, which seems like a reasonable request, until she starts to put some whiiiiiiiiine in it. Suddenly I'm flashing back to Flo, which, I know, strong words, but it's just not a pretty moment for her.

The two leading teams that didn't decide to just go for a drive around Ireland reach the far, where they're told to ride a bike to the next clue box. Kynt and Vyxsen lead the way, and while I hate to give these guys the attention they so desperately crave, they're already on my TV, and pink-clad "Goths" riding a bike in the middle of Ireland is just about the most damned surreal thing you can get on a network like CBS these days. I can hardly wait for these guys to get to Africa. Also a mitigating factor – they're damned solid racers so far and can deal with adversity. When the chain on their bike breaks, they don't fall apart and just decide to carry it. That's good hustle.

This puts TK and Rachel into first place at the cluebox, the first Roadblock of the race. This has them performing a bit of a high wire act, pedalling a bike across a canyon on a wire, while their partner hangs below on a pole. Suddenly it's Cirque du Soleil, and if they ask the teams to open a jar of rainbows, I'm calling shenanigans.




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This isn't particularly challenging as roadblocks go, but it does require a bit of nerve, and it's good to get these teams into full adrenaline mode as much as possible, to test their decision making skills under stress.

TK powers across with ease and this gets them to the next task, which has them lead a donkey carrying peat blocks down a path to the next clue box. Donkeys aren't the most pliable animals ever, so this has a pretty good chance for a "My Ox is Broken" moment. Fingers crossed, you know.

Azaria and Hendekea get some luck with their donkey, which seems to want to race, while Ari and Staella and Nathan and Jennifer find the ones that just want to sit put on the pathway. This just goes to show that donkeys can sense evil. Amazingly, these two teams resort to the "yank as hard as you can" method, falling right into the cliché trap. Nathan morphs into Napoleon Dynamite right in front of our eyes, yelling "GOSH!" repeatedly – if he starts dancing to Jamiroquai, I'm outta here.


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