The Amazing Race 4: Impressions Left from the Eliminated Teamsby Phil Kural -- 08/16/2003
I must admit that this has probably been the toughest season of The Amazing Race. The roadblocks and detours seemed very detailed and required more than just brawn this time around. However, wrapped up in all this chaos we have three teams that are still left in the race. Kelly & Jon: the engaged couple who I picked to win, Reichen & Chip: the married gay couple who donít fit into the whole ďgay stereotypeĒ scenario, and Dave & Jeff: the best friends who always seem to get lost. But what about the other teams that were eliminated from the race? What kind of impressions did they leave? Letís take a look at the teams that didnít make it to the end of the race and see if they really deserved to depart when they did.
Debra & Steve Ė Well, I have to admit that they were sentimental favorites. These two tried so hard. Really, it was some bad luck that did them in. First, they were stuck on the last plane to leave San Diego. Then, they got a crappy bus to the next route marker. Couple that with them not really being in the best physical shape, and you have an elimination. Debra & Steve were great people. I liked them because you could tell they were very much in love. Steve catered to every one of Debraís needs and emotionally, Debra was right there for Steve as well. Itís a shame they didnít make it further in the race.
Amanda & Chris Ė Hmm, Iím not really sure how I feel about this team. Amanda sure did have a potty mouth and Chris was a little demanding sometimes Ė or at least it seemed that way. However, what I liked most about them was that they were real. They both showed their true personalities and it was apparent that the stress of the race was putting too much tension on their relationship. Their elimination came courtesy of Chris taking forever at a roadblock which dealt with matching up masks at a masquerade ball. This team went from first place to being eliminated. Strange how a team can fall in this race and thatís what makes it so exciting.
Cindy & Russell Ė Cindy & Russell were friends who ďmay dateĒ or something to that degree. They were eliminated when they bought train tickets to the wrong city and didnít realize it until it was too late. I look back now and realize that Russell was really too hard on Cindy. Cindy said it best in her interview that I had with her Ė once the race started, Russell was a different person that what she was used too. The race can do that to you though. Iím sure it was Russell being competitive, but I donít think he realized how much he cut Cindy out of the planning. If he hasnít already, I think he owes her an apology.
Steve & Josh Ė Itís still a mystery as to how Steve & Josh were eliminated. First they were with the rest of the pack, next thing we know they were the last to the mat and were eliminated! They never got back to me when I contacted them about how they were eliminated so I guess we wonít know until I actually get to see and ask them. I know that when the race first started I was not that fond of this team. I finally warmed up to them during the episode they were eliminated. I thought Josh was kind of sneaky and that Steve was being a little too pushy. Then, I realized they remind me of myself and my dad. Even though they were total opposites, the love was still there. I came to really enjoy their relationship.
Steve & Dave Ė The ďold headsĒ this time around were air traffic controllers Steve & Dave. There was so much that led to their elimination it would take me forever to list them. These two kept me laughing with their upbeat attitudes. Even at their elimination they made a few jokes. I think Dave and his bum knee were one of the main factors that lead to elimination. Both of these guys were not in the best of shape and their age gap with many of the other teams was a hindrance as well. Basically, they were plagued by injury. They had fun until the end though, realized it was not a big deal to win and seemed to get along with everyone. I was sad to see them go.
Monica & Sheree Ė I could go on and on about how much I loved The Supremes Ė as they came to be known. Monica & Sheree had the guts and drive to win the race. Missing one bus really cost them the entire race. Since everyone else made the bus they were left in the dust. Since they went for the fast forward early, the option wasnít available for them to use. I loved these girls and they were definitely sentimental favorites. I think itís easy to say that they proved that two girls can do this race with class. I mean, Nancy & Emily did it as well, but The Supremes did in a way that had them looking like divas, and I loved it!
Tian & Jaree Ė The two models were eliminated after they took a little too much time at a roadblock and forgot to load cargo on an elephant at a detour. Like Josh & Steve, I wasnít all that fond of the models when the race first started. I thought Jaree was lazy and Tian was too bossy. I then realized that is why their friendship works. Apparently, it must since they have been friends for a good while. I wish they had made it further. They finally got themselves together as a team and were working well when they got eliminated. Iím not saying they didnít deserve to, because they did. However, I think if they had gotten to the next leg they really would have had the drive to make it until the end.
Millie & Chuck Ė Well, I came to know them as Chillie. Anyway, Chillie had the teamwork in the beginning, but by the time they were eliminated they were so fatigued and in shambles that I thought it was for the best that they were done. Arch rivals of my favorite team, Jon & Kelly, Chillie showed that the race can break down a couple that has been dating for many years. This is another team that had bad luck the leg they were eliminated. Both didnít realize they were headed in the wrong direction for a route marker and by the time they did, another team had caught up and passed them. I liked Chillie in the end and I hope they stay together. The only thing I want to say is: Chuck, propose, or for the love of God, at least be intimate!
Jon & Al Ė How could anyone not love these two? Some (like me) feel they should definitely be in the final three. The funny thing is, most of the time they would sit there forever looking for better flights. The one time they didnít, it cost them. I would say that everyone liked the clowns because they never fought with the other teams, always had a positive attitude and raced with the best of them. Even when they were stressed out in the airport in Korea they broke out the clown noses and started to entertain the crowd. These two were definitely a class act and kind of got the shaft. Thatís okay though, it always seems to happen that way on this show. The teams we love always come in fourth.
So there you have it Ė my impressions of the teams that have been eliminated. Itís funny to see that several of the teams I really disliked in the beginning of the race ended up becoming some of my favorites, and this especially pertains to Tian & Jaree. They had spunk; it just took me some time to realize it. Anyway, with only three teams left it will be crucial not to make any more mistakes. Jeff & Dave screw up all the time so that will be interesting to watch. Reichen & Chip sometimes lose their patience and that tends to set them back. Kelly & Jon have a tendency to bicker. I know one thing; this is going to be one heck of a finish. I wonder if my opinions of any of the final teams will change. I guess weíll have to see!
Phil Kural is a senior at Temple University, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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