March 24, 2013 10:43 PM by Stephanie Gustafson
I don’t know how I’ll be able to continue watching this season of The Amazing Race, what with my favorite team (Dave and Connor) having voluntarily taken themselves out of the running. But the good news is, there’s plenty of juicy drama to keep the show exciting! Tonight, the two main alliances continue to bicker their way through
If you live on the East Coast or in the Midwest and missed out on The Amazing Race, you also missed out on a lot of confusion. The show was delayed due to the NCAA tournament, but hey, at least it wasn’t canceled outright!
If anything impacts viewership tonight, it will be less an effect of the changed time and more a result of anger surrounding last week’s episode. A number of viewers were offended by the inclusion of a scene in which the Communist Party of Vietnam performed for the contestants…plus, the less than respectful visit of a B-52 memorial site. Those who took issue with last week’s episode will be glad to know that the beginning of tonight’s show included an apology targeted at veterans and their loved ones.
But back to business. This week, the remaining contestants go on a safari of sorts, flying all the way from Hanoi to the landlocked nation of Botswana. First though, they need to figure out that Botswana actually is their destination, as they are only given the name of their target city — Maun — and not the country in which it is located. In order to enter the travel agency, racers must first figure out that Maun is in Botswana. There’s a lot of cheating involved in this little challenge, but it’s Wynnona and Chuck’s attempt that proves the most entertaining. After guessing Kenya, Wynona displays her geographical ignorance and guesses everything from Turkey to Paraguay. It’s obvious she’s going through a list of this season’s destinations, because after a ton of seemingly random guesses, she guesses Botswana.
The teams all end up on the same flight to Botswana, but once they make it there, they are separated onto four different safari flights. It’s a cool experience, obviously, but some racers have more fun than others. The first flight is a pleasant one, with flirtatious buddies Bates, Anthony, Caroline and Jennifer getting nice and cozy on the plane. On the other hand, flight number two with Max, Katie, Meghan and Joey is decidedly awkward, since the two teams clearly can’t stand each other.
The hockey/country singer alliance arrives at the Road Block first. They are required to solicit the help of bushmen in order to find scorpions. Along the way, Caroline and her bushmen buddies encounter a lion — except that Caroline doesn’t actually notice the lion and makes a bit of a fool when the guys climb in a tree to hide…and she compliments them for being good climbers! That being said, she does have plenty of experience with scorpions and isn’t afraid to dig with her hands if necessary. The same can’t be said for YouTuber Joey, who is absolutely terrified of scorpions. He starts to panic at the sight of the critter but ultimately manages to get it in the jar.
Once the teams have finished the Road Block, they are instructed to take their bushmen friends along for Fire or Fowl. In Fire they must use elephant dung to, well, make a fire. For the Fowl challenge, they are required to help set up a trap in order to catch a local bird. Most of the teams decide that they prefer the fire option, but this challenge is a bit trickier than they expect. Bates and Anthony have the benefit of brawn on their side and end up finishing the challenge first…and arriving at the Pit Stop first!
Pam and Winnie have done their research (aka, watching lots of reality television) and know that starting a fire by hand is exceptionally difficult. So they make a wise choice and go for the Fowl option. Chuck and Wynona do the same, for Chuck figures it shouldn’t be that much different than hunting back in Alabama. And he must be right, for as much as I make fun of this team’s inability to carry out the more academic challenges, I have to admit that Chuck sure can set up a great trap! Choosing Fowl before trying the fire is a winning tactic in this leg of the race, for Pam and Winnie arrive in second place and Chuck and Wynona are (gasp) third!
Soon, these two teams are followed by Caroline, Jennifer, Mona, Beth, Meghan and Joey, all of whom decide that creating fire is not in their immediate future. But Max and Katie are stubborn as usual and decide to stick it out a bit longer. Because, you know, that approach worked so well for Jessica and John. Finally, Max and Katie realize how much it would suck to end up like their enemies and decide to switch over to trap building. But while they were stubbornly trying to make a fire, the teams that switched earlier were already completing their traps. They’re lucky though, because it’s a non-elimination leg of the race.
Next week, the teams continue their African adventures. But their ability to avoid elimination will be completely dependent on how well they can control…donkeys!
Photo Credit: CBS