Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Amazing Race Family Edition update – Southern Fried Racing

Before tonight’s show, Phil came on to announce that the episode was filmed in Louisiana and Mississippi “weeks” before the region was devastated by Hurricane Katrina. I seem to remember that in the last Race, teams had traveled through Indonesia only weeks before the tsunami hit. Could it be that where the Amazing Race goes, disaster follows?

Teams started out from Huntsville, Alabama and needed to find the world’s largest office chair in Anniston, Alabama. Nothing to note (another “go here” diversion) as teams find the chair and receive the next clue: go to the Talladega Speedway. This causes some anxiety among the Weaver family because their father was killed in an accident at the Daytona Motor Speedway in Florida. (The Weavers are characterized as “Widow and kids.”) Once at the speedway, teams need to mount a “party bike” and make a lap around the track; the bikes are sufficiently slow such that the teams leave in the order they arrive, allowing for no suspense. After completing this task, teams needed to head to Hattiesburg, Mississippi and “find the Southern Colonel.” This is a trailer home park and teams search thorough all the homes to find one of three departure times the next morning: 7:20am, 7:40am, or 8am.

Side note: a little nudity on the Race? One of the Powerpuff girls mooned the Linz siblings as they passed by on the way to Talladega. Oh those crazy flirty kids.

After a night in a double-wide, teams left at their designated times to head to…a BP gas station down the road. Subtle product placement, this was not. Teams received a clue at the station which directed them 150 miles south to Madisonville, Louisiana and the Fairview State Park. The Schroeder family is from Louisiana and they recognize this as an advantage for them…immediately before taking a wrong turn.

At the park, teams hit the Detour: Work or Play. Teams may choose to use lumberjack saws and cut four slices from a 12” log or they may take a canoe to a riverboat and play blackjack until each family member wins a hand three times. I thought the better choice was the Work, especially for the younger teams, but who can figure out the teams’ rationale at any given time? The Paolo family, a weak team thus far in the Race, finishes cutting first and heads to the Pit Stop: New Orleans.

For the final sprint in this leg, teams had to drive across Lake Pontchartrain, down the unflooded Esplanade, to a dry French Quarter and Preservation Hall. There seems to be quite a bit of confusion finding the Hall on the mostly empty streets of New Orleans (was it a weekday morning? Probably). Although the Paolo family seemed to have had a sizable lead after the Detour, the Bransen family arrives literally seconds ahead as team #1. Team Nawlens, which seemed allergic to obtaining information in either phone books or maps, fell back to last place and were eliminated in their own backyard.

Final standings

#1 – Bransen family – Team Powerpuff (and Wally) – Travelocity trip to Orlando
#2 – Paolo family – Team Joisey
#3 – Linz family – Team Cincinnati
#4 – Godlewski family – Team Scream
#5 – Weaver family – Team Florida
#6 – Gaghan family – Team Rugrats
#7 – Schroeder family – Team Nawlens – PHIL-LIMINATED

Next week: A flight “to another country.” Must be America Junior Canada.

Last week’s update.

Extra – This space reserved for updates from Dummocrats and Brainster.

26 comments:

Pat said...

Mine's up. I thought the teams didn't use logic on the blackjack situation. They should have held on every hand (rapidly saying hold-hold-hold-hold) and hope for the dealer to bust, which he will about a quarter of the time. And I wondered if the Gaghan parents couldn't have sawed, say half way through on one side, then let their kids finish it off, once it was in the groove.

I also wonder if that bit with the Shroeder's being a little too gleeful at the Weaver's having to face Talladega wasn't an unsubtle hint that they were unworthy.

GreatDarkSpot said...

I also thought that the best thing to do on the Blackjack table was to stay and wait for the dealer to bust. Far better odds than having four hands beat him.
Why is it that whenever people think that they have 'home field advantage' they loose? The producers of the show must love that bit or irony - still, I was glad because the Gaghan's are my favorites and I would have to see them go. They didn't run a great leg - they had a good start by finding a faster way to the ugly chair, but then the freaky Weavers passed them on the way to the race track and they picked the 8AM departure when there was still a 7:40 out there. Switching detours is not always the best thing, either.
I'm guessing that next week will be a non-elimination leg, but I could be wrong on that. I'm still enjoying this show, but I can't wait for them to leave the US already. All this driving around is a tad dull - only the fact that it's a family race is keeping it interesting for me.

Bruce said...

OK, I can see I'm not alone in the "Stand on 12" blackjack theory. Why anyone would take any cards, thereby slowing the game down, makes no sense at all.

Eric said...

I said the same thing last night: stand on anything less than 12 and wait for the dealer to bust. I'm a little surprised the teams didn't figure that out, although at least one of them said: "How do you play this game?"

Also, I don't share Kris's affection for the Schroeder family. I loathed the son who never missed an opportunity to snipe at his step-mother; the father was no prize either. They were unnecessarily nasty at every turn.

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