The Amazing Race Recap
By Daron Aldridge
March 5, 2012
Last week, we started out with only two married couples (strangely both with a husband named Dave) but would end with one in first and one eliminated. While the South American good fortunes continued for repeat first place finishers Army of Two Rachel & Dave, apparently the continent’s favorite song is “Send [Away] the Clowns” with Ringling Bros.’ own Dave & Cherie in last. Their elimination was unfortunate; but WOOHOO…I was finally right about who would get eliminated on an episode. Wow…clowns really do make people happy.
Anyway, enough of me dancing on their reality game show grave, let’s take a look at how my subjectively determined power rankings look heading into the third episode:
Army of Two Rachel & Dave: Two legs down and two first place finishes. Like I said last week, Blonde Rachel and combat pilot Dave will either dominate through the Race and take home a million bucks (a la Meghan & Cheyne) or dominate through the Race and suffer a heartbreaking, unexpected elimination (a la Team Dude Tommy & Andy). With the Express Pass in their pocket, I think they will continue to dominate; thus, the number one spot in my rankings.
Border Patrol’s Art & JJ: Here’s the team I think I misread the most before the season started. I truly thought they would bicker more but in actuality, they work well and channel any emotional outbursts in the direction of Team Big Brother, which is a healthy exercise in my mind. Also, last week, they gambled by being the only ones to choose the Light my Fire Detour task and it paid off with a second place finish. More of that and Art & JJ are here to stay.
Bopper & Mark: I have to give these proud Kentuckians credit. Last week, they showed glimpses of that "thoroughbred" competitiveness they declared in their introductions, with Mark shining in particular on both the Detour and the Roadblock with its cattle calculations. As a reward, they got to Phil third and couldn’t be happier. More of their strong work on the tasks and less of feeling sorry for Bad Rachel and helping her out, just may push them to the end.
Dating divorcees Vanessa & Ralph: Okay…bear with me on this one. My gut still thinks that Vanessa & Ralph are a team the others should be afraid of. Their seventh place finish last week belies their competitiveness. Their second departing bus had the unfortunate luck of a two hour delay, yet this dating duo still burned through the tasks and was the first team on their bus to hit the mat. But in good conscience, if they have yet another week in the bottom batch of teams due to bad Race luck, I’ll just have to accept that fate is against them. Plus, the previews show that Team Big Brother starts to hate them this week, which means that I am guaranteed to root for Vanessa & Ralph.
Team Un-Fed Nary & Jamie: First, with slightly more screen time this week, Nary & Jamie confirmed their ruse about being Kindergarten teachers. In fact, the others were seen referring to them as such when trying to figure out where everyone was. I like the (possibly) unnecessary act of duplicity because it shows they are approaching the Race strategically.
Kerri & Stacy: Last week, cousins Kerri & Stacy hustled through the tasks and were elated to hear that their bus passed the one with four other teams. Even though they aren’t as strong as some other teams, I am using my heart and not my mind, when I happily give them an edge over…
Team Big Brother Brendon & Rachel: If you haven’t figured out by now my level of disdain for these two, then you clearly skipped my ranking explanations for Bopper & Mark and Vanessa & Ralph. Here’s the recap: I hate that they are on my TV. I would have rather been subjected to a team of Survivor’s Parvati and Coach, which would painful to watch. Because of a departed cab, Bad Rachel turned into a sobbing, blubbering child even though they KNEW they were at worst in fourth place…out of TEN! She is a) that emotionally unbalanced; b) so used to being on camera and crying to get sympathy or c) a combination. I go with "c," which would prove how fake these two are. Meanwhile, her not-so-better half Brendon is an enabling, hot-headed, irrational fool. Please, oh please, let these traits be their early downfall.
Twins Elliot & Andrew: tsk, tsk, tsk. Our twins should be performing better but unlike Vanessa & Ralph, I am not seeing the competitive drive I suspected would be there in the beginning. They were virtually edited out of the entire episode, which I must interpret to mean they did nothing noteworthy. The teased outburst from Andrew in this week’s episode points to a role reversal for the twins who both claim that Andrew is the more levelheaded one. I foresee a breakdown and a near elimination.
Joey "Fitness" & Danny: Just as Blonde Rachel & Dave have two first place finishes, our Jersey Shore mimics have back-to-back second-to-last finishes. I stick with my suspicion that they are in over their heads and that "second-to-last" distinction will finally change to "last." Of course, that means they will be last but this will be a non-elimination round. Just my guess.