'The Amazing Race' hits Champagne country

jordan-jeff-amazing-race-320.jpgOne of the biggest problems with the non-elimination leg of " The Amazing Race" is that it allows teams who are clearly outmatched to live to flail another day.

That is exactly what happened with Jordan & Jeff, a team who was saved from elimination a second week in a row due to another getting U-Turned.

Could lightning strike a third time for team Big Brother? Let's discuss, shall we?

Well, I'll start by telling you that, as you know, teams ended their last leg in France, and they wouldn't be departing the country this week. Instead they were off to Reims, and I couldn't help but get the feeling that maybe the producers were worried about teams being able to make airline flights (what with their lack of intelligence), because they've done very little flying this season.

Steve & Allie made it to the first location, a statue of Joan of Arc, in the lead. The Cowboys actually got there pretty quickly but then, rather than going to what seemed to be a quite nearby winery, opted to drive to Champagne because it was only 40km away. I love the Cowboys, you know I do, but, really?!? It's a mistake no one else made, everyone else went to the correct winery that was nowhere near as far away. There, everyone did the Road Block which required finding a marked bottle of champagne in the winery basement (which they got to by rappelling). Despite it being a needle in a haystack task, it didn't look terribly tough.

Dan & Jordan actually started and finished the bottle hunt first, but then got bad information about their next stop, La Marquetterie Taittinger and went to the wrong place, a location for Taittinger, but not the La Marquetterie location (Steve & Allie, the Cowboys, and Jordan & Jeff all made the same mistake). I can tell you that after seeing it, La Marquetterie may have made my list of places that I have to visit. For the teams however, it was the location of the Detour. Everyone had to either stack 680 champagne glasses into a 15 level tower and fill it with champagne or find a marked set of grapes in the nearly empty vineyard.

Normally I would say you don't do the needle in the haystack, but it might have been easier than the tower. The math wouldn't have bothered me with the champagne glass tower, just the physics. You mess those glasses up just a little on the second level and it all gets magnified by the 15th and then when you pour the champagne... you end up like Brent & Caite, or you don't even get that far like Jordan & Jeff. Most people opted for the grapes, not the glasses. In fact, only Jordan & Dan successfully completed the glass pyramid task, but did fall farther back in the field for having gone that way.

The Detectives were the first team at the Road Block, did the grapes, and ended yet another leg in first place. Those guys are impressive.

For me, more important than the Detectives stellar third first place finish was the fact that the Cowboys, after their disaster of a beginning, got to the Road Block fifth having started the leg in third. Yes, that put them behind where they began, but not last nor next to last. They were next to last by the time they got to the Road Block (because they had gotten lost again), but finished the leg in fourth, passing Dan & Jordan and Brent & Caite.

Remember how I started this recap talking about Jordan & Jeff getting saved two weeks in a row? This week they again started in last place and they stayed there the entire time. It made no difference that Steve & Allie, Dan & Jordan, and Jet & Cord got lost. It didn't even matter that Steve screwed up his team's car going to the wrong Taittinger or that Caite & Brent seemed to again have no clue what they were doing for the entire leg. Team Big Brother had been flailing for too long and there was nothing that was going to save them this week. No, Caite & Brent didn't look terribly good, especially with their trying to skip the Road Block and jump straight to the Pit Stop, and the Cowboys did end up with a bunch of wrong turns, but Jordan & Jeff still spent almost the entire leg alone, only catching up to Brent & Caite after the Models glass pyramid fell. Jordan & Jeff got sent packing this week and I, for one, won't be missing them.

Odds and ends:

  • Was it just me or are a bunch of teams really starting to fray?
  • Did Jordan & Dan really complain that people in France don't speak good English? Did it not strike the team that perhaps they ought to speak the language of the country they are in rather than people in their native land bending over backwards to suit Americans?
  • Joan of Arc carried all the animals? I am not going to miss them. I'm really not, not even for the humor. I'm not going to miss Caite & Brent when they disappear either, because Caite totally thought Joan was Noah too.
  • "If I can find crack in someone's rear end, I can find grapes in a vineyard." I like those Detectives too.
  • So was there no perfect solution for the champagne glass pyramid - the judges accepted both Brent & Caite and Jordan & Dan's version despite the fact that neither looked quite right.

The TV and Film Guy's Reviews - we need to get ourselves a nice chateau.

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