I make no bones about the fact that I’m a reality TV show junkie. But for all the Survivors and Big Brothers and Hell’s Kitchens out there, The Amazing Race is still my favourite (although Top Chef is getting pretty close), so the season premiere is something that I always look forward to. Join in the celebration with me, Amazing Race fans…it’s the Return of the Eyebrow!
To the returning readers, Welcome back! It’s nice to see you again. And for those of you new to my blog and my Amazing Race Recaps, a hearty welcome as well, and a couple of things you should know: a) the recaps should be up within 15 minutes (often less) of when the show ends on the East Coast, b) the pictures will all have hidden captions underneath, so make sure to mouse over them if you want to see them, and c) I love Comments, so let’s all get involved in the Comments section for this season.
For tonight's premiere post, instead of the traditional ‘Random Thoughts’ format (like I will be doing for the rest of the season), I’ll be going with my First Impressions of the new Racers, based on tonight’s episode alone.
My First Impressions:
Andie and Jenna – Newly reunited birth mother and daughter. If you had been given an opportunity to re-connect with the mother/daughter you never knew, would you do it on The Amazing Race? They said this was only the third time they had ever seen each other. Was the second time the day they shot those horrible ‘Mom and Daughter playing billiards’ vignettes we saw at the beginning?
Brooke and Claire – TV shopping channel hosts who “could sell ice to an Eskimo.” Or as I like to call them, the Watermelon Team. More on that below.
Chad and Stephanie – Boyfriend and Girlfriend, with Chad declaring that he was going to propose to Stephanie on the Race. Weren’t you hoping that they got eliminated first after hearing that? Seriously, seeing Phil tell them they were the first team out, and Chad drops to a knee right there on the mat? In their intro video, we saw them pushing each other as they jogged on the beach…then we saw former football player Chad’s bouts of rage throughout the first leg. I’m calling it now…these two have disaster written all over them.
Connor and Jonathan – Team Glee told us that they’re “going to sing to make the other teams like us.” If by “like us”, they mean “make the other teams and every viewer (who isn’t a gay teen) hate us”, then I would agree.
Gary and Mallory – Father and daughter, who just happens to be a former Miss Kentucky and “the boy he always wanted.” She is painfully perky, despite the candid father-daughter footage of them driving ATVs and hunting together.
Jill and Thomas – Boyfriend and Girlfriend: Notre dame grad and hairstylist. Yawn.
Katie and Rachel - Now, I’m going to have to be honest…I’m a red-blooded heterosexual male who thinks that women’s beach volleyball is the best spectator sport in the world, so I’m going to have a hard time rooting against these two. Remember a couple of seasons ago when the producers kept giving the Racers challenges that made them strip down to their underwear? Fingers crossed…
Michael and Kevin – Father and Son who were labelled as “internet sensations”, which may be the best billing in the history of the Amazing Race.
Nat and Kat – Doctors and BFF. Let’s be honest, you two got on the show because of your spiffy rhyming names and the fact that the casting agents obviously referred to you as “The Hot Docs.”
Nick and Vicki – Boyfriend and girlfriend from Las Vegas. More combined ink than the previous 16 seasons of The Amazing Race put together. Frankly, I’m getting really sick of CBS reality shows having contestants that are listed as Bartenders from Las Vegas. Are the casting agents just hanging out in Sin City getting hammered in the clubs looking for new contestants?
Ron and Tony - Best friends and Musical Theatre performers for 22 years. Do we really need two different teams inspired by Glee? I loved how they specified that as black, musical theatre actors, they met in a production of The Wiz…just in case you thought they might have been cast as Danny and Kenickie in a school production of Grease.
And a Few Random Thoughts:
- I like the Express Pass concept. I’m glad that there is an expiry date on when you can use it (up until the end of the 8th leg), similar to the Hidden Immunity Idol on Survivor. I can’t think that they would be able to use the Express Pass on the last leg. That’s way too much of an advantage.
- Ron and Tony told us about Tony’s two separate University degrees, which apparently showed us that he was able to read a map…wrong. First place to last place in a heartbeat.
- Doctor Nat is a Diabetic, and Doctor Kat told us that “she is an excellent example for diabetics.” The beautiful irony of that statement is that Kat said this while Nat was doing a Finger Prick to check her blood while driving with no hands! Great example, indeed.
- A note for Team Glee: if you’re going to stop and make sure everyone is ok whenever you see another team having car trouble, you’re going to be singing your way right out of this race really early. And Jonathan…we understand that you really do bear a resemblance to Harry Potter, but if you keep referring to things as “magical”, it’s going to be pretty transparent.
- Let’s talk about the watermelon shot for a moment, shall we? I’ve watched the clip of that watermelon smashing into Claire’s face about 50 times already (it was posted here on the blog last week), but it was still just as unbelievable watching it on the show. How was she not more seriously injured? That thing absolutely exploded into her face. Amazing.
- Gary on Michael and Kevin trying to cross the river: “They looked like a couple of carnies in a dunking booth.” That was actually pretty bang on.
- Andie and Jenna told us that the fact that they didn’t really know each other worked both as an advantage and a disadvantage for them. Personally, I’d love to hear how not knowing your teammate could possibly be an advantage.
- Nick and Vicki are painfully dumb. Painfully.
- Mallory the beauty queen is going to be very difficult to watch. With her squeaky, excited, baby-talk, screaming, shouting, and cheering throughout this episode, I’m praying that her and her dad get eliminated next week. It’s just too over the top.
- I love when people yell redundant things to their teammates while they are working on a challenge. Nuggets of wisdom like “Aim!” when they are shooting watermelons, or “Don’t let it sink” when they were trying to cross in the boat.
- After being the first team on the first flight, Ron and Tony’s map inadequacies in the U.K. put them too far behind to recover…and they were eliminated first. Aren’t you glad that you talked about how awesome you were with directions back in Massachusetts because you had (gasp) a COMPASS! Looks like it’s back to Summer Stock for you two.
Next week: Car Trouble in Ghana.
All in all, I thought it was pretty good, and this cast looks like they have the chance to give us some really entertaining TV for the next few weeks.
What did you think? Who's the favourite this season? Was the watermelon shot as awesome as it would have been if we hadn't seen it in promo media for the last month? How fast will the A Cappella thing get old and make you want to rip your own ears off? Let’s hear from you in the Comments section.
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Ratings News - 26th April 2017
1 hour ago