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The Amazing Race 9: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, Episode 4: Horse Feathersby Mike DeGeorge -- 03/28/2006
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As it turned out, the teams who did the random “killer” task finished well ahead of those who did the “easier” washing task. Of course, getting lost and various other problems faced by the trolley teams probably contributed, but I don’t think it was a coincidence.
We’re On a Roll: Three elimination weeks, my three least favorite teams eliminated. This is a decided twist from last season, where the Linzes were the only team I liked after the midway point.
Of course, this will mean I am cursed next week. I hope the previews aren’t indicative, but then again, last week’s previews had me convinced that Frankenberry were going home.
Lucky Dogs: That was some streak of luck the Frat Boys were on early in the episode – catching the flight to Germany right away, and then getting the train the second they got there? Too bad it didn’t help them at all.
The Wall of Death: Normally I dislike the tasks where the teams don’t actually have to do anything, but I’ll make an exception in this case. The task seemed exceptionally cool – it looked like a bobsled ride! Did you see Tyler’s face as they entered the wall?
No Place Like Gnome: A lot of people probably had flashbacks to the “unrolling bales of hay” roadblock this week, but again, I don’t see a problem with it at all. It seemed to be a huge field, with hundreds of gnomes, but it seems like all the teams (except Bouriqua, the last team, which would make sense) found a gnome without much trouble.
It’s a Smash Smash Smash!: The bottle-smashing task is one of those challenges that makes me want to try out for this show. It just looked like a lot of fun, which, again, the Hippies provided. And was I the only one who thought Tyler in his lederhosen (see the pic at the top of the article) looked like the great Harpo Marx?
Yet Again: Yes, time for me to bitch about the equalizer again. I think the problem was this time that the producers didn’t expect anyone to get to Germany that night.
I’m starting to think that, in the case of an equalizer, they could have an alternate task set up. Three equalizers in four weeks is just getting insane. I can’t imagine that these guys are racing that much better than expected!
Not Really Coming Attractions: While I’m thrilled that Frankenberry didn’t have much trouble with the dance detour, I am fairly ticked that the previews made it look like it would cause them to lose. I’ve said it before – there’s plenty of drama in reality TV, particularly this race. Why are the producers so bound and determined to create it?
Stereotype: The Double Ds are out to defy the “hot blonde” stereotypes. So far, they’ve proven their intelligence, but they’ve yet to prove they are good at directions. They almost were eliminated due to getting lost on the way to the pit stop!
They can’t read a map, they followed Wanda & Desiree with no independent thought of their own, they leave things behind, and they get giggly over the Frat Boys. They’ve yet to convince me totally.
The Real You: “The Frat Boys are trying too hard to act straight.” “The Hippies are acting silly for the camera.” I’m getting emails like this again. Look, I’ve said it before countless times, but I’m going to say it again here.
I’ve talked to dozens of reality show participants, and there is one thing about reality shows, one universal constant. I don’t care how much careful editing or creative doctoring goes into the episode, the one thing the producers simply cannot change is the way someone acts. I had one producer tell me that they can make a good guy into a saint, or a bad guy into evil incarnate, but there’s no way in heaven or hell they can make a nice guy look like Lake, or make a jerk look like Dave. It just can’t be done.
When the race is on and the stress is high, that’s when you see how someone really is. Lake is an aggressive, semi-violent creep? The Frat Boys are goofy man-whores? The Hippies love to joke and have fun? This is going to seem like a wild concept, but 999 times out of 1000, it’s because that’s the kind of people they are. Hell, this may even explain why I go, “Wait, who is that again?” every time Mojo appears on my screen.
Maybe the Frat Boys are so deep in the closet they have hanger burns. But if so, that’s the way they are in real life. Show me the person who can go through the ordeal of this race while keeping up a front this good, and I’ll show you a thousand talent agencies that are dying to sign them up.
Just so we’re clear – I’m not saying they’re NOT. I’m just saying they’re not ACTING. The goofiness might be turned up, thanks to the stress of the race and being on camera 24/7, but that’s who they are. And I love them for it.
Mike DeGeorge is an Accountant from St. Louis and is also Associate Editor for RealityNewsOnline. You can reach Mike at email@example.com.
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