LAST EDITED ON 07-24-04 AT 10:18 AM (EST)
Roving Report Summary, The
Great Amazing Race, Part 3
If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Patagonia
or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love This Bomb
Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis Peter Sellers
Another Wacky Group of
11 10 9 Dynamic Duos
Hi Everyone! Ra and SunnyBunny reporting to you from the third leg of The Amazing Race. Um ... perhaps we should explain why we are here.
The short version: MB got mad at our obvious distaste for All Star Survivors, and saw the out-take where Ra told me to sleep with The Donald so we could get reassigned to The Apprentice. After a few phone calls to other networks, we found ourselves blacklisted and being told that the only way we could cover Survivor Cannibalism was if we agreed to report on the Amazing Race, or Big Brother. After careful consideration, we decided that traveling the world with stupid people was far more interesting than being stuck in a house with a bunch of sexed-up stupid people for weeks. We also decided that this time around we would trade off reporter/cameraperson duties, in an effort to appear less biased. (Actually, the real reason is because Ra figures that the half-dressed babe element prevalent in Survivor will be less likely in this game, and he will grow bored if forced to film all the time.)
So let us join the contestants in what we have already deemed The Tour de Farce. Actually now I'm thinking I'd like to have the camera back, and ride along on a motorcycle like at the real Tour de France. Dear reader, please don't get confused by the multiple personality of this report, at least we know which one of us is talking. Perhaps the royal we is in order. Bunny waves so well, ya know.
Previously on Amazing Race
Episode 1: You know its going to be a long haul when you arrive at California’s Santa Monica Pier and people are wearing winter coats. Before relocating to the Temple, I lived in California. At no time of year do you need a true winter coat in Santa Monica. (Unless of course, you are a flasher.) From the moment we saw the contestants, we knew we were in trouble. Ra has a hard enough time remembering individual names in Survivor tribes, now he has to know couples as well? He has started devising fiendishly clever ways to associate the couples' names. In any case, some nondescript couple finished last and got the heave ho. (Upon review of the opening credits, I notice that that some couple was Dennis and Erika.) Yes, it was that exciting.... NOT.
Episode 2: The Osmonds Donnie and Marie, er, Alison, in a pathetic reunion attempt, discover that dating your sibling is a bad idea, and break up immediately after the camera shuts off when they arrive last at the Rancho del Buckhorse. Alas, 'twas not meant to be.
This Week's Share of the 80-Day Adventure
Phil sets the scene: "We start in Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. Just outside the city in the lush countryside is La Conteńa, a traditional Argentine estate, the second Pit Stop." Thanks for that geography lesson, Phil. We begin with questions. Will Chip and Kim and the Twins remain enemies? Blah blah blah. Finally the starting gun/traditional Argentine coyote-o howling at at the moon sounds. Brandon and Nicole get the dubious benefit of TAR's FIFO policy -- first in, first out. The starting order is staggered for time of arrival, too; what will they do if some teams ever come in a day behind? Brandon enunciates the destination veeerrryyy slooowwwllly. I think he's really Hansel from Zoolander. They have to drive to Buenos Aires in the dark of night and fly to San Carlos De Bariloche, "a picturesque village at the base of the Andes," Phil intones, and find the mayor for the next envelope. I wonder if the mayor is like Mayor E.B. Farnum of Deadwood, complete with tattered dress. Since no planes fly until well after dawn, this FIFO policy really gives the first-place team an advantage, eh?
Marsha's proud she and Jim went "from last place to first place?" I thought The Blue Lagoon team were in first place. Correction, Marsha said "third place." Ah, still, its nice to see that delusions of grandeur are not exclusively Survivor-owned.
Long Distance romance by Brandon and Nikky? The saga continues: now they're together, just traveling long distances. Charla and Mirna hit the road, too. Mirna seems to be trying to convince herself as she ponders on "God-fearing people like us who will stick to their word," to wit, Brandon and Nicole. But why one should fear God is a curious proposition to me, and if one did, how that would help in a game like this. Aha! Cruel wrath of the Race God's at least cometh as Brandon and Nicole get stuck in the mud instead. So, there are alliances, maybe. When you call AAA in Argentina, they send you a tractor! Why the heck are Gidget and Midget hanging around for this? To get electrocuted!? They sure do treat you like cattle when you travel, eh?
Yogi Berra said when you see a fork in the road, take it. Charla continues to amaze with her midget-brain, and sends them straight through the intersection -- in the wrong direction. Brandon, very traffic-sensitive now, signals a left turn from the passenger seat and slaps Nicole in the face. Yes, that's his story, and he is sticking to it.
One of the Bowling Moms, Linda or Karen, Linda I think (they'are as hard to tell apart as the Twins), says her "middle name is Mario Andretti," which is actually two names. She's trying to win the Nextel Cup, or the Baja 500, which is more mixed racing metaphors or circuits than I can take. Bob and Joyce use a clueless questioning voice when pronouncing their the destination -- usually a bad sign. The Moms are having a mud-road blast! Bob and Joyce look stressed, despite what Joyce phlisophizes about handling stress and figuring out where to go. We have a few suggestions, just not ones you can air on network television.
Charla goes into pantomime mode and asks the gas station attendant for directional help, "De plane, boss, de plane!" complete with sound effects. When did you Yanks decide that talking slowly in English or, worse, bad Spanish, would result in better foreign relations?
Brandon and Nicole hit the airport first. I think we know now who dominated the "long distance romance" phone calls, as Nicole takes over communication duties with the airline, learning that the earlier flights are sold out, the 10:30 flight is the first with available seats.
Now begins our newest game within the game: Count the "Duh" Points. Marshall and Lance head off. Lance, in a gross understatement, says they' don't have bodybuilder bodies, but we're not 'girlie men' either. Certainly the shape you're in will have an effect on how you play the game." Certainly. These statements constitute deep thoughts from the pizza man. This car chase stuff reminds me of Lance Link, Secret Chimp. I can't wait for them to get to ride a bicycle, so we can get some pointers from Lance Armstrong.
Which brings us to our game within the roving report summary: Which of the following Lances has the better chance of winning The Amazing Race?
Overnight at the airport. Hard chairs, and backpacks, and waiting! Oh Joy! If I'm lucky, I can get a shot of them drooling.
Call triple A again for The Fat Boyz, they have a flat.
Chip and Kim get their turn. Kami and Karli finally get going on the Duh game. They're "feeling pretty anxious right now, because we're dead last.... We have to stay focused and think about what we're doing." Well, no, why don't you get distracted by your cell phone instead, Kami, and find the muddy ditch just like Nicole did.
And we get a gratuitous fat jewish manual labor joke from the Texa
cos Star Team. Not a good one mind you, but a joke none the less. They won't be playing in the Catskills this summer.
First lie of the day apparently goes to Brandon and Nikky, telling the Twins they waited for them on the road, according to Kami. Hmm, I may be confusing Mirna with one of the Twins. In any case, next week there will be two less to worry about identifying. You will probably come to notice that whenever one of the Twins talks, I'm calling her Kami. Pretend they're trading places like those Big Brother twins. Gosh, I wish we could do that Ra, two of you might be fun!
Marshall is negotiating at the counter. The 9:40 flight has seats available. "Mirna and Schmirna" will drive Lance to drinking Smirnoff, I think. Arguments abound about the need-to-know basis of who's buying the rounds.
Jim and Marsha are buying tickets all around as Brandon and Nikky bolt the alliance. Boy are the Twins pi$$ed. Bald-faced lies abound here at the airport, with everyone saying "are you going to believe me, or your lieing eyes and ears?"
Note to Kami, if you want to do a Miller commercial to compete with Bud's "The Twins", you'll have to drop the nose-pierce thing.
Brandon thinks they're at the roulette table; he's covering the 9:10, the 9:30, the 10:30, and the red-eye. How did Jim and Marsha screw this up already? Marsha was booking different flights when they have to travel together? They're on standby for 10:30. Collin and Kristie, Charla and Mirna make the 9:10, mostly because of the lie of the day in Charla's Spanglish (just talk slow and add an "o"). Seems the regular doctors in Buenos Aires can't cure her ills, so she's going to the Andes where the doctoros prescribe coca leaf. In either an act of poetic justice or the continuing fear-of-God factor (I can mix reality shows as well as metaphors), the alliance rats get bumped down to 9:30. Marshall and Lance are with them too. Linda and Karen, Bob & Joyce, Chip and Kim, and Kami and Karli are the third grouping. Oh no, this looks bad for Pop and Mop, they'll be the last off the ground. This choke point at the airport will probably determine the order of finish, doncha think?
Ooooh, yes, a satellite view with graphics showing the air leg of the groups. Too bad it's not nearly as good as AMD's graphics that Outdoor Life Network is using for the Tour de France. We even get side-views and 3-D rotations of each stage's route from OLN. At least CBS's budget is a step up from a globe with a little model airplane on a stickpin.
Brandon, thinking he's on a roll, demonstrates his newly discovered road savvy: "This one has good tires." Yeah, they're round and full of air. Good call, B. So is this a Duh, or a huh point?
Time to enjoy some scenery. "Look at that lake!" says Colin. Charla, the consummate traveling connoiseuer, takes time to stop and smell the roses. I mean, "stop for one second and look at the pretty mountains."
The mayor's handing out Golden Tickets for a visit to the chocolate factory two blocks away. Hey, it's Willie Wonka's Chocolate Factory, complete with Oompa Loompa. Charla will feel right at home. Phil gets to talk again, using his best Carl Sagan voice: "In the bbbbiiilllions and bbbiiillions of chocolates in the universe, only 20 have white centers, thus proving that there must be life after cavities." To move on, a member of each team has to find life forms in one of the white-centered candies, after which the Oompa Loompa will hand over the next envelope. I wonder if Chip and Dip are gonna have problems with the symbolism of this challenge? Or should we merely consider this TAR's version of Survivor's gross food challenge. (Wait, I think that actually comes up next week, pun intended.)
Mirna, remembering her bolemic diet plan, screeches out instructions, "Spit it out, spit it out! You don't have to eat them!" Christie gags on one of the bon bons as she laughs. I think she looks like Lucy in that I Love Lucy scene, especially with the hairnet. Next instruction: drive yourselves to the Villa Catedral. We're given rather unappealing barren mountainside shots of the place, which looks like it's still under construction.
Gear-jammer Kami continues demonstrating her driving expertise. She must have been taught how to drive by Paris and Nicole.
The second and third waves of our intrepid dynamic duos descend on the factory. It's as much a madhouse as the kitchen of The Restaurant. (Second game within the summary: count the reality-tv show references.) For some reason Brandon thinks the master Oompa chef is a cowboy, bowing quickly with a "Gracias Caballero."
In a rare intelligence sighting on this show, Bob and Joyce get to their car, and they formulate a plan. It would've jazzed the scene up better if, after asking the taxi driver to lead them, Bob had quickly jumped into the car and shouted "Follow that Cab!"
Marshall's not doing so well finding a white center. Lance moans to the Twins, "We've been here for an hour!" I think his brother is eating them, which will obviously slow you down. And the Twins go slip sliding away past the Brothers. The Bowlers throw a strike. Well, your foreshadowing comment about your strategy that you made earlier, Boyz, is gonna come true. You will only have to beat Jim and Marsha.
Oompa Loompa, doompadee does
If you are wise, you’ll listen to us
Oompa Loompa, doompadee don
We know you won't, you're such a moron
What do you do when you're searching for white?
Scarfing it down like a barnyard pig might?
Won’t take a breath as you shovel it in?
We know exactly who. won’t. win.
Two disgusting fat boys!
Oompa Loompa, doompadee dah
If you’re not stupid you will go far
no such luck; watch mocking ensue
Like the Oompa Loompa
Colin races Charla to the
whipping message post. So he does "beat the midget." Ain't he proud of hisself? But there's a decision to be made now, so Colin has to wait for Christie. The teams choose how to get back down the mountain: smooth sailing or rough riding? (Insert your own appropriate off-color joke here.) Charla can only ride those circus bikes, so it's the silks by default.
Weeeee, parasailing! Colin and Christie take off first. Charla and Mirna are close behind. Marsha's hoping that someone gets lost. Now, THAT's a plan, at least, since we see Marshall and Lance ineptly asking for directions. The first two land. Don't you think they had some instructions given off camera? It seems they have their own personal chaffeaurs doing the para-driving. Charla does a cartwheel! She's an all around girl. The rest of the groups plod through. Linda may be chickening out on the parasail idea. Maybe it's all that dust blowing into her face. Wow, that sure looks fun, doesnt it 'bun? Bun?! "Well," I yell to her as her little tail glides off, "at least get a cool shot of the male gliders losing any hope of procreative activity for the remainder of the race!" Chip's package contents seem to have settled during shipping.
Phil describes the lake and Pit Stop for this episode. Not with any emotion or panache mind you, but he does describe it. Oh Ra ... how I miss Jeffy!
One measely shot of the cable-gondola ride up the mountain to the Villa for Jim and Marsha. Well how many bloody Mountain shots do you need in one show? Marsha seems resolved to their fate: "We may as well do something fun." "Never give up, never surrender," says the military dad. Good advice. It worked well for Custer, didn't it? A better plan might be to parasail all the way to Phil's little island.
It's an easy wade over to Phil and his little
p- island for Colin and Christie, where they're greeted in harmony by a trio of de riguer native children in traditional costume: "Recepción a Patagonia! *giggle* *giggle*" The duo fluently responds with unsure smiles, "Ah, ... Urg."
Christie tells us that she and Colin "have really figured out how this game is played." Uh-oh, that's a sure sign they won't win. Charla and Mirna place. Brandon gives Nicole a piggyback ride for show, showing how to keep his damsel's feet dry. If there was any remaining doubt, it's gone -- we know who has the whip hand on this thoroughbred team. Bob and Joyce are next.
The Twins strip down to their bikinis, dive off the cliff and swim over to the island. Hee hee, and YOU thought you wouldnt see skin in this game, Ra. Maybe they're secretly auditioning for a twins version of Survivor. Phil demonstrates his humorous side, chuckling, "That was quite an entrance you made. Everybody else just walked acrosss the shallow water there." I know Jeff Probst, Phil, and you're no Jeff Probst. Although a shirt modeling competition between you two might become interesting. Maybe you should try a little Dr. Phil schtick.
Linda and Karen make it as team #6. "Chip and Kim, you're team #7," Phil says in as low a voice as he can manage after a dramatic pause. Chip celebrates moving up a notch, not quite realizing that they're still finishing two places up from last. Marshall and Lance waddle in next.
Cue the sentimental music because it's a love fest now for the Old Man and the Sea and his tuna. "John." "Marsha." "Joooohhhnn." "Maaarrrsha." Don't worry, though, Jim and Marsha, we're pround of you two, too.
And remember, nobody actually gets dropped from The Amazing Race, they just become lost luggage.
Spanning the globe to bring you the thrill of victory and the agony of defeet.