November 29, 2012

Amazing Race 21, "Fishy Kiss"

When did The Amazing Race become Survivor? The leaders basically voted Abbie and Ryan out by removing the “double” part of the Double U-Turn. While losing an arrogant team usually is refreshing, they still get a raw deal. Even without the flight delays, there is little chance that Abbie and Ryan could survive. Jaymes and James do the official U-Turn on them, but Trey and Lexi really seal the deal. Instead of picking the goat farmers or skipping it, they purposely choose a team ahead of them. It’s a smart plan that removes a strong team, yet it still leaves a hollow feeling. Blaming the players isn’t fair since they’re just using the devices in place. Old-school fans like me don’t enjoy these methods, particularly when they remove the drama. Instead of having Abbie and Ryan battle Josh and Brent for the last spot, it’s an anticlimactic finish that leaves the survivors questioning whether they want to stay in the game. For more details, check out my review for Sound on Sight.

Here are some other interesting points that I didn't address in my review:
  • This is one of the roughest weeks for a team in the show's recent history. When Abbie and Ryan finally arrive at the Organ Grind, they're stuck in the rain. Getting tips from locals is impossible, but a friendly woman saves the day. Abbie's genuine thankfulness towards her makes me feel for them, at least for a little while.
  • The goat farmers' (especially Josh) inability to truly compete is growing old quickly. I'm hoping they'll keep the race for the final three exciting now that their buddies Abbie and Ryan are gone. I understand why they were working together prior to the U-Turn, but their hesitation afterwards is just stunning.
  • I like the idea of the Switchback tasks from past seasons, but the ditch vaulting is not an exciting choice. It didn't look particularly hard or exciting, so bringing it back a second time feels unnecessary.
  • It's great to have a well-deserved two-hour finale on the way, though it makes next week seem less necessary. There's no guarantee that it's a non-elimination, but that feels like the most likely scenario. 

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