The Amazing Race Season 17, Episode 11
By Daron Aldridge
December 6, 2010
Last week, Nick & Vicki kicked off reality show Quitters’ Week on CBS by bailing on a Detour. Just like NaOnka and Purple Kelly who followed suit and quit Survivor but still get to be on the jury, the tattooed twosome are still around but with three BIG disadvantages. Of course, I am talking about the six-hour penalty, the hours behind the third place team and an impending Speedbump. Here’s hoping that this episode isn’t one anti-climatic snoozefest.
Well, that’s enough of that. We are off to the races to see who will be in next week’s final leg.
It’s 4:37 p.m. and we check in with Nat & Kat in first place. The teams will be leaving Hong Kong for Seoul, South Korea. To add to the drama/anxiety, upon landing, the teams have to drive themselves to the demilitarized zone near the North Korean border to find a bridge. Yikes. Kat then apparently reads another important part of the clue: “Do not cross the border.” Maybe this clue was written by Laura Ling and Euna Lee.
Next, Jill & Thomas leave in second place at 4:47 p.m. and Thomas compliments the doctors and Team HSN as being strong teams. Of course, the qualifier that they are women seems to turn this into a chauvinistic back-handed compliment.
Team HSN is in third and leaving at 5:25 p.m. They are equally as taken aback by their destination task and in true fashion, Brook tries to be funny in pronouncing the name of the bridge but it only comes across as borderline offensive. Displaying some race savvy that is more valuable that costume jewelry hocked on a basic cable channel, the girls head to a hotel to arrange a flight there instead of the airport. Not knowing what flights are available and being nearly an hour behind Nat & Kat, this seems to be the prudent choice.
The doctors and Jill & Thomas arrive at the airport together and both secure seats on the first direct flight to Seoul at 12:25 a.m. It looks as if bottom dwellers Nick & Vicki will potentially catch up and be on the same flight. This is bummer in my eyes because I don’t think they deserve to be in contention. At least, Nick doesn’t deserve it. Vicki should get to finish the race on her own.
Nat & Kat employ the femininity card in a way that makes sense (i.e. not Brook & Claire’s kiss count) by asking a man at the airport to buy them a travel guide of South Korea. Obviously, this works and the fellow even inscribes it as if he was the Birnbaum employee who wrote it.
We get a shot of nighttime in Hong Kong and Nick & Vicki’s onscreen text only says “Last to Depart.” There is no time listed, so I am just left to assume that the producers wanted the drama of "will they or won’t they" make the flight. By my math, in the best case scenario of them only being a few minutes behind Team HSN (which we know isn’t true), the six-hour penalty alone would have meant they could even leave the pitstop until 11:26 p.m. In their confessional, Nick’s greatest hits…er…tantrums and insults are played and he once again, says he promised he wouldn’t treat her that way again. Hopefully, the third, fourth, or fifth time’s the charm. (I honestly lost track of his hollow promises.)