Monday, February 15, 2010

February 15, 2010

Sunday night was the premiere of the 16th season of the Amazing Race, and as I did last season, I will be writing a recap after each episode. Usually they will be up on Sunday night, but with the Olympic excitement last night, I didn't even watch the premiere until Monday. For the opening episode, with so many jumbled thoughts, and not really knowing any of the teams yet (except for Jeff and Jordan), I figured I would just group my thoughts into each team.

Brent and Caite (The Models)
For Caite to describe her Pageant answer as a YouTube Sensation is a bit of an understatement. I've seen and heard it so many times that I can pretty much recite it from memory. I had to laugh at their 'model posing' footage as they were being introduced. It looked like a promo shot for Grease. Who wears a leather jacket on the beach?

At one point, Caite said that she 'almost pooped herself.' For the record, I can't think of a possible situation on The Amazing Race where this would be a good thing.

Jet and Cord (Cowboy Brothers)
Wait a minute, weren't Jet and Cord the names of the two Duke cousins that were brought in on that horrible season of The Dukes of Hazzard when John Schneider and Tom Wopat were in a contract dispute? No...that was Coy and Vance...ahhh...well, close enough.

I love the black hat/white hat that the producers obviously told them to wear. Which is shocking, because they normally like teams to be wearing the same colour all season long. The best part of these two yahoos is the ridiculous music they play whenever Jet and Cord are doing anything. Is that the soundtrack to City Slickers?

Steve and Allie (Father and Daughter)
I'm already stick of Steve padding his baseball credentials, and comparing everything in life to baseball...and that was in the first ten minutes...AND I'm a big baseball fan. Let me give you a couple of facts on Steve Smith: Yes, he was indeed on the coaching staff of the Philadelphia Phillies when they won the World Series back in 2008 (he was the third base coach), but at the end of the season, he was fired, and every other coach on the staff was brought back. He is currently the third base coach for the Cleveland Indians, and how do you think they feel that he didn't mention them, his current employer, and instead mentioned the team that fired him?

I loved that they went in the house and painted the whole area before realizing that it was the wrong place. The best was self-congratulatory Steve talking about how proud of himself he was that he had spotted it. I can just imagine how he got fired from the Phillies. "Yeah, I know he got thrown out at the plate, but I couldn't see the ball in his glove, so I just assumed it was a home run."

That's pretty much all I have on this team so far, except to say that Allie is kind of cute. She'll probably be engaged to a major league ballplayer within two years.

Dana and Adrian (High School Sweethearts)
The footage they show as they're introducing the teams is always so enjoyable, and Dana and Adrian were shown putting together. No, I mean 'PUTTING'...with a golf club! Are you telling me that this is how they golf? With only one hand each on the club as they putt the ball together and smile. Unlikely.

Not sure whey they thought a guy Adrian's size should do a challenge like the walk across the wire, but it certainly didn't work out for them.

Jeff and Jordan (Cute & Dumb)
I loved these two on Big Brother, and I think theyll make for some great TV on The Amazing Race. I love that they are playing up the 'stupid' angle with clips from Big Brother, and then seeing that Jeff and Jordan came first in this opening leg. I will re-state what I said last summer about these two, they will definitely have the best-looking, dumbest kids in school. But I still love 'em, and I hope they do well.

Jody and Shannon (Granny Tri-Athlete and Granddaughter)
Not a lot to say about this team, except that it seems like the producers handed them bunch of green clothes and said "Enjoy the first couple of episodes before you get eliminated."

Although Granny did get the line of the night when explaining why she didn't do the challenge walking across the wire, "I have the balance of a drunken elderly person on stilts."

Louie and Michael (Undercover Detectives)
First of all, if you're an "undercover" detective, you sure as hell don't advertise that before you go on a TV show! There goes your cover. And what are these two guys going undercover as? Based on what I've seen so far, I can't think that their range is very broad. Pretty much always 'tough guy with tattoos, buzz-cut, and horribe moustache'. Is there a big need for this undercover Rhode Island? And just because you're an "undercover" detective, are you always going to wear the camouflage shorts all the time? We can still see you.

The thing that makes me most uneasy about these two is the fact that when they are talking to each other, they always call each other 'Baby.' Really? I can see it on a couple, and I can stretch it to allow a parent and child (while still awkward), but these two rejects from Hill Street Blues, Rhode Island? Very very weird.

Dan and Jordan (Brothers, Half Gay/Half Straight)
It's been a while since The Amazing Race has had an overly swishy gay contestant to give them all of the crowd-pleasing "Oh snap!"-esque soundbites that they love so much. Seems they've got that now, and right from the intro, where Dan (or Jordan, I don't know which one is which yet) declared that "Gay is the only way," I thought to myself, I'm going to count the Clever Gay Lifestyle Ryhmes this season. (CGLR Count - 1) This could be last season's Brian and Ericka's black-and-white marriage token lines.

I also loved in the intro how they showed the gay brother dropping the football, and the straight brother catching the football. What are you telling us, TAR producers? Hmmm???

Joe and Heidi (Asian Parents)
What was with the intro footage of them where Joe keeps hipchecking his wife? When they were riding their bikes along the beach,I almost expected him to knock her off. They tried to bill him as the confrontational one on the race, but we haven't seen much of them yet. Tidbit: their last name is Wang (snicker).

Carol and Brandy (The Lesbians)
I loved the intro footage of them playing with their two dogs, and then cooking lobster. That said to me "We're animal lovers...unless the animals are tasty with drawn butter!" They're clearly billing them as the elitist group always talking about designer clothes, valet parking, and Martha Stewart. It's tired already.

Monique and Shawne (The Lawyers)
These two almost deserve an entire post all their own, I have so much to cover. First of all, with their intro footage...what better way to prove that we are lawyers than to have footage of us walking out of a courthouse? I mean, for all we know, that's the back entrance to a Kinko's, but it looked like a courthouse.

But here's where I got confused. They billed them as the Lawyers, but the first thing you heard them say in person was that they were "Moms that make it happen." And then you saw them on the race with not one, not two, but THREE different Mom-Power slogan T-shirts: 1) Mompreneuer, 2) Mom's Rule, and 3) You Don't Scare Me...I've Got Kids! The third one takes the prize as the worst T-Shirt Slogan I've ever seen, narrowly edging out the leader for the past decade, "Just Give Me My Timmies And No One Gets Hurt."'re not going to promote them as 'The Lawyers', they're going to be 'The Mom's'. All right, I'll get behind that. But now, as they're walking the paint and supplies up to the painting challenge, the one that was carrying the ladder on her shoulders declared, "If Jesus can do this, I can do this. I'm trying to be more like Jesus." So, now they're the Christians??? And I'm pretty sure Jesus wasn't on his way to paint something. It was a little different.

So, are they the Moms, the Lawyers, or the Christians?

And in L.A., when they were trying to find the public transportation to the airport (great twist), they were scrambling around for someone to talk to, and then shouted "Black Person, Go!" when they found a black person to ask. So, they only feel comfortable asking black people for help? And what makes them think that a black person in LA is the expert on public transit...and a black person driving a car no less!

Lawyering, Christian, Racist Moms?

That covers all of the teams, so let's wrap up some other random elements of the race and the episode itself.

Second season in a row that Phil has not given us The Eyebrow to open the race. Come on, Phil!

When they were in Chile, and had to go to Valparaiso, I only thought of one I can't even hear the word Valparaiso without thinking of the following shot from the NCAA tournament in 1998. One of the best NCAA moments ever.

Anybody on this race who ever says "Unbelievable" should be given some sort of time penalty. Last night we heard it with regards to a cab driver not knowing where he was supposed to go. Really? Have you never watched this show before? A lost cab driver is "unbelievable"?

On the challenge walking across the wire, everyone was saying to themselves "I can do this." It was all very 'The Little Engine That Could." I think I can, I think I can...

Why make them carry all these painting supplies to paint a patch that takes 3 minutes to paint? Give them a real task! Like painting inside one of the houses, like Steve and Allie did. And did you notice the painter in the house who was so confused? He was wearing a shirt that said Sudoku...with 9 empty squares. I would LOVE to know the story behind that!

Good to see Jeff and Jordan win the leg, and winning a trip to Vancouver is a pretty cool prize. But you have to think, considering the tragedy on the sliding course on Friday, they may not have wanted to mention that Jeff and Jordan will be doing the skeleton on the course. Just sayin'...

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