Production and Contestants Make The Amazing Race Must-See TV
by Susan Schechter
From the breathtaking views to the various pairs of players, the production of The Amazing Race has excelled at almost every level. It has everything for riveting TV watching and is truly must-see TV.
Jerry Bruckheimer is an amazing man. Not only is he the executive producer of CSI and Pearl Harbor, but he is also the father of Hollywood producer Michael Bay. The best place to see all the amazing things he has done is to check out his listing in the IMDB.
As you can see, he has done The Rock, Days of Thunder, and American Gigolo. He is also the executive producer of CBS’s new reality show, The Amazing Race. And I have come to the conclusion that while I do not care for his movies, this guy is brilliant on the small screen. And let me tell you, being a work-aholic, it takes a great TV show to keep my interest! This is a standout wonderful winner in a TV world saturated by reality show wannabes. All the mistakes he seems to have made with his latest film (casting, bad script, etc.) are erased by this wonderful show.
I make a point when I start watching a new show, not to know anything about it. I also do this for movies. If a coming attraction on TV gets me, then I will give it my time. If it’s good I will watch it. If it is terrible, well, I won’t watch it again. Yes, that might make me a schmuck, but I find that its better to go into something with no expectations, so I won’t be upset if it does not live up to expectations. So when I heard about this show, I thought of a movie I remember watching as a child with Natalie Wood and Peter Falk. I loved that movie. And I must confess, I really like this show. It has action. It has conflict. The editing is flawless. The cast members are interesting with the various aspects of human dynamics being played out. And the scenery is gorgeous. What more do you want in a reality TV show? The only thing missing is a great theme song, like the Survivor song. Maybe they can add that for Race 2.
Take the first few episodes aired. The second one was better than the first. The third was better than the second, and the forth was wonderful… I just did not want that team eliminated! This is good, it’s going to keep people watching. We, the viewers, got a feel for the teams, the players stopped being two-dimensional and are becoming easier to relate to. Whoever did the casting for this show should get an Emmy. The contestants are diverse, from two couples who want to get married, to a couple who have been married two score years. And the friendships… you have a team of working moms who are best friends, lawyers who are best friends, and frat brothers who are best friends. Family is important in this show. These people are real, and easy to relate to. I have decided who I want to win, (the grandparents team were my sentimental favorites and I am upset they are gone, but they handled their dismissal with grace, and even the host seemed sad to say they were eliminated; but my real favorite is the frat boys from the Big Apple). The team that will most likely win, IMHO are life partners, who have become downright annoying; even though they are playing brilliantly I no longer want them to win. I want to grab the mother/daughter team and shake the daughter to be more respectful of her mom. I want Margarita, part of the separated couple, to tell her ex, Frank, to “get stuffed.” He annoys me constantly. If their relationship should not survive this race, then he should start dating Jerri Manthey from Survivor 2; this way they can argue about who the bigger bitch is. The only good thing about these two is that Frank is starting to mellow and be nice. As I said earlier, I am keeping my fingers crossed for Kevin and Drew, but if they should not win, they should take this act on the road and appear at Carolines in New York. Give me the date, I’ll be there with bells on, for no other reason that these guys really make me laugh. And their befriending of some of the weaker teams like the mother/daughter is real, not just for the cameras.
The cinematography is something out of a foreign film. Magnificent. The African wildlife shots were gorgeous. The shots of Victoria Falls, wow. And the show keeps getting better! The views of France and Tunis should be featured on tourist brochures. I have decided my next European trip should be in Paris next year based on the footage. Hear that CBS? I hope during the finale, when the team has to go back to the Big Apple, they will show some great shots and get people to start coming again. I know we need the tourism!
In a nutshell, this show has everything for riveting TV watching, and Mr. Bruckheimer should be congratulated for coming up with this show, hiring the casting people and the editors, and doing a whiz bang job making the best reality show since Survivor. I really take comfort in knowing there will be an Amazing Race 2 next year. If you have not seen the show, its on Wednesday night at 9:00 EST on CBS. I highly recommend it. It’s really that good.