November 19, 2012 12:17 AM by Stephanie Gustafson
Nobody likes a cliffhanger, but that’s exactly what took place on last week’s episode of The Amazing Race. Following a plane mishap and a lost passport, we were left wondering which team would make the cut. But gosh, if Amazing Race is going to force us to endure a cliffhanger, they should take it literally like every other surprise on the show — they should force the contestants to rappel down a cliff. Or something to that effect.
The contestants on The Amazing Race have officially dropped their friendly personas, which means the show is about to get infinitely more entertaining. First though, we need to learn what happened after last week’s obnoxious cliffhanger. It turns out that this is not an elimination leg (yep, we have been misled) and that there is still hope for James and Abba! The two will need to hunt for their passports and also complete all the necessary challenges. It’s an uphill battle, but if there’s a team to root for, this is the one!
James and Abba are not the only team in a bind. After Josh and Brent failed to complete their detour challenge (because the pool had closed), they were assessed a four hour penalty. This puts them ahead of James and Abba (or, as I like to call them, Jabba), because they still have passports and are able to check in. But Josh and Brent’s debacle leaves them even further behind Abbie and Ryan, the other team that had plane troubles last week.
Lexi and Trey are having much better luck, for they were able to snag a win for the latest leg of the race. They head out for the Moscow Agricultural Academy and are followed by the twins and the Chippendales. All three teams have (for a change) amazing taxi drivers. Good thing, because the next challenge requires brainpower, something certain teams (ahem, Chips) often appear to lack. Cooperation is also important, and that’s something another team (ahem, twins) has not used to the best of its ability. Since the possibility of working together on a solution would be too awful too comprehend, Natalie and Nadiya decide to waste their precious Express Pass.
Intelligence and teamwork aside, the best part of this challenge is not the random calculations required to figure out Moscow’s time zone; it’s the monitoring of the teams by the professor of doom. The professor loves to rub it in the faces of the racers when they screw up, but even better is faking them out and then announcing that they do, in fact, possess at least a small amount of problem solving ability.
Detour time! Using yet another lovely cliche, The Amazing Race labels this challenge “Movers and Shakers.” For the movers detour, teams must learn Russian military dancing. After the synchro challenge, it’s hard to say how they’ll manage with this. Of course, the Chips have the clear advantage, what with their dance background. It might be a 100 percent different kind of dance, but hey, they can move. Unfortunately, James still has a sprained ankle, which definitely impedes his usual high-energy dancing. He works through the pain like a champ though, giving a surprisingly good show for someone with what would otherwise be a rather crippling injury in this type of competition. Trey and Lexi are also able to get through the choreography with little difficulty, leaving them neck and neck with the Chips. It’s close, but the Chips are able to stagger in first, sprained ankle and all. After Trey and Lexi come the twins, who clearly wasted their Express Pass in a leg with two pairs of hardcore stragglers.
Josh and Brent have to wait forever to get started, but once their four hour detention is up, they two zip through the two challenges, proving themselves competent in both mind and body. James and Abba do their best to retrieve their passport and get back on track, but as I expected, it’s no use; they’re out of the race. I’m bummed, but also pleasantly surprised to find out that Josh and Brent can accomplish so much when faced with so many challenges.
Photo Credit: CBS