The Amazing Race Recap
By Daron Aldridge
October 29, 2012
Bangladesh must be so nice that the Amazing Race decided to stay there twice. The next leg continues in Bangladesh and that ups the possibility for more Ugly Americanism, given the lifestyles these folks are accustomed to and embrace. The racers are probably not going to be as culturally open-minded.
As I mentioned in this week’s rankings, I am pegging this week as the first non-elimination leg, so this whole episode is possibly an exercise in wheel-spinning. Let’s get this under way and see if I am correct and how badly Natalie & Nadiaya will annoy me.
The show immediately addresses the family situation hinted at in the preview for James of Headbangers’ Ball (James & Abba). Two hours before they get to leave in first place, thanks to the Fast Forward, James finds out that the cancer diagnosis for his father has come back Stage 4 with no chance of remission. Instead of just bailing on the race (which would have been completely understandable), James says that he will use his dad as motivation to win the race.
At 7:30, James & Abba rip into their clue and are being pointed to the Jatrabari Market for the next clue in the hands of an eggplant vendor. As the rocker and the lawyer are looking for the market, about two hours after the leaders, dating divorcees Abbie & Ryan and nails-on-a-chalkboard twins Natalie & Nadiaya leave. Ryan explains that aside from the large amount of prize money (remember they are still playing for $2 million), he wants the distinction of being the most dominant team ever. But they have a long way to go to match the record eight wins. It’s good to have goals and all but you’re just getting greedy now, Ryan.
James & Abba are at the next clue box and it is the Roadblock. Here’s what they have to do: build a balance scale and then measure out a stack of wood that is equal to the weight of four stones. On the last leg during their search for rats Fast Forward, Abbie tweaked his knee, so James happily takes this Roadblock for their team.
On his first attempt at assembling the scale, James explains that the three bamboo pole structure of the scale is very much like what we often had to use to build things in the Boy Scouts but with a devilish smirk, he adds the disclaimer that during the ‘80s (and White Lion’s heyday), he was no Boy Scout. Oh those randy ‘80s.
Back to the task, his assembly gets shot down by the judge on the first time because he used the wrong ropes to secure the poles together. His overlooking the small, lashing ropes hanging above where the judge is sitting gives divorcees and twins the chance to narrow the gap between them. These two teams are now at the Roadblock clue box. That means there appears to be an hour travel time between the Pit Stop starting point and Roadblock or in other words, a heck of a long cab ride in hot, sweaty Bangladesh.
The twins give us a bit of a language lesson. They urge their cabbie to beat the “goras” (Abbie & Ryan). What is a “gora”? Natalie & Nadiaya say it means “bad white people” but then try to deflect the possible connotations of the word by saying, “it’s not derogatory. It means the color white…kinda.” Basically, it’s the girls trying to rationalize the use of potentially inflammatory language to get a slight advantage. They are even more despicable in my opinion now. Meanwhile in his cab, the heat and chaos of traffic seems to be pushing Ryan to the brink of an anxiety attack.
As both teams arrive at the clue box, Team Beekman Josh & Brent, monster truckers Rob & Kelley and Team Beefcake Jaymes & James are leaving the mat within a span of 13 minutes.
Metal James has perfected his scale at this point and finally gets the rocks to balance with enough wood to get their clue before any of the other teams arrive at the task. The clue takes them immediately into the Detour. This leg is moving at quite a clip and one team hasn’t even left the mat yet. This fact gives me more justification for thinking it will be a non-elimination leg.