June 20, 2011

Australia 1x05: Cape Town, South Africa

Previously on Focus, Believe, And LEAVE: Last week. Also: Nine teams flew from Macau to Port Elizabeth, where Bitchard and Jenius ended up bogged, bloodied, and booted, becoming the second team of "married entrepreneurs" to get booted because of a task involving transporting animals from Over Here to Over There. For the remaining eight teams we'll be discussing for the rest of this recap, there was a completely pointless six hundred kilometre drive to a hill and back, before a Detour choice between whacking things into place or knocking other things out of place. Momos continued to not do very well, but they managed to stay out of last place after Wallace and Grommet undid a large amount of the hatred they'd earned for their physics-defying hairstyles by forcing FBA to U-Turn and increase their suffering a little bit more. People got thrown off of a bridge, but unfortunately Bambi went instead of Asshole and unfortunately Dave was attached to a rope. Goats very briefly replaced Alana as the butt of Mel's humour, but there was something about the task she couldn't quite put her finger on. The farmers and Hallmark and the Lucys were all pretty much just window dressing, but what fine window dressing some of them were. Eight teams are still in the hunt. Who will become a wall-mounted trophy... TONIGHT?

Credits. Wait, where do Giggle and Cackle work again? [CLEAN-UP IN BOMPWEAR.]

Commercials. To all the people offended by me mocking the show's homoerotic undertones in the absence of actual gay racers, I offer you some lyrics from one of the finest musical comedy songs ever written: When correctly viewed / EVERYthing is lewd / I could tell you things about Peter Pan / And the Wizard of Oz? There's a dirty old man!

African chanting and a herd (horde?) of elephants welcome us back to the Addo Elephant National Park, located on the outskirts of Bairnsdale. Except not, 'cause we is in the Africa and stuff. They'd show you some black people in loincloths to prove it, but apparently the elephants have eaten them all. Grant and his too-small shirt explain that it was the fourth Pit Stop of the race, but he makes no attempt to wonder about what will happen to the teams on this leg of the race. Probably because the race is over and he already knows what happened. (And they're doing a stunning job keeping the ending of this one a secret too -- past US seasons have managed to have the entire finishing order from first to last worked out before the show even began, but if I recall correctly we only had knowledge of three teams even making it out of South Africa before this episode aired.)

Wallace and Grommet and the farmers "arrived at 4:09pm", and will be departing at the previously non-existent time of 4:09am. But more importantly, where did everyone lose so much fucking time during the last leg? The Detour opened at 7:00am, and even with the bog most teams would probably have been in and out of there by 10:00am, but surely nobody took six hours to bungy jump and drag a goat. The clue says to fly to Cape Town. Sigh. Remember when the first clue of a leg used to occasionally start with something other than the words "Fly to..."? It used to be so unpredictable. It's just getting repetitive now. Anyway, when they land (probably not actually flying so close to the side of Table Mountain as suggested here), they'll have to take a cab to Dolphin Beach, where the next cluebox is getting a nice tan. As they leave, Matt wonders whether the airport is going to be open at this ungodly hour. In a confessional, they explain that Wallace and Grommet and themselves have a kind of "cat and mouse" thing going on, which I suppose means that whichever one is supposed to be the mouse will lose to whichever one is supposed to be the cat, but that whichever one is supposed to be the cat will lose to one of the many bitches in the remainder of the cast. Grommet enjoys being "toe-to-toe" with the farmers -- not "cowboys", can't you read the little subtitle graphic -- because "they're really talented people, you know, they don't just round up sheep" (they also handle cocks, it seems), but Wallace bemoans the fact that the continued presence of their hats in the race is distracting people from his wonderful hairdo or something.

Hey, look, a departure board that actually shows flights to the right destination! Noting that the first flight to Cape Town leaves at 7:40am, Wallace posits that everyone will catch up.

At 4:26am, Asshole and Bambi depart. In their car, Asshole (driving) tells Bambi (navigating), "You just tell me what to do". And there's Foreshadowing, whacking us over the head with its giant foam mallet again. As they struggle to get anywhere, he voices over, "We probably shouldn't be fighting, but we tend to get like that pretty quickly, and that could be our downfall". Wait, fighting is bad? WHO LIED TO ME?! With a noticeable shift in volume, suggesting it's not from the same confessional, we hear and later see them bicker some more about, basically, how they both know one of them needs to shut up and listen sometimes, but that neither of them is actually willing to. They both seem to be fairly smart people (despite the misogynistic undertones to their relationship), but the stress of their race is really not helping them come across as enjoyable people to be around. In other news, the confessional in which all this happens shows Chris with severe bags under his eyes and the beginnings of a bad goatee, while she's remarkably uninterested, so it's pretty clearly this week's Asshole & Bambi Clip From A Future Leg.

Ten minutes later, Hallmark (and their twatty headlamps) set off, Luke explaining that they're not arguing nearly as much as they or the casting people expected. He believes that "early on, we might have been defintiely seen as an older team that maybe wasn't as serious competitors". Okay, firstly, there is no way in hell anybody wouldn't have considered the team with two strong, well-spoken, sociable guys as threats. Secondly, YOU ARE THIRTY-TWO YEARS OLD. And your father definitely isn't anywhere near being three days older than kerosene, either. I really didn't want to be this sort of guy when I started recapping this show, but: Just shut up and take your shirt off already.

It's 5:03am, and the Lucys have the beginnings of a new day in the background as they leave. Renae tries to ignore their frequent unexplained trips to the arse end of the pack and claim they're "still a strong team", which is enough reason to stop underestimating their prettiness already. They teleport to the airport, where they charm Wesley the ticketing agent into getting them tickets at the front of the plane. I suspect Wesley just likes blondes though, since he's certainly not ugly enough to be overwhelmed by the shock of two mildly attractive women flirting with him. Wallace and Grommet fake incredulity at their antics, because only men may act like brazen hussies without it being strategic enough to make them threats. Or something. Everyone still waiting in line gets tickets.

5:32am. Dave & Kelly, who have correctly decided that Kelly is the right person to do all the "hard thinking stuff".

At 5:48am, Melana leave, Mel telling us, "I don't want to be the older sister any more and I've had to be on this race. I would like to see her use initiative and take control." Which I suspect would be somewhat easier were you not too busy being the older sister to listen to what she's saying. (Lotto numbers: 1, 27, 6, 40, 34, 38, 7, and 11. Hee, 7 11.) Alana explains that she feels "like an inconvenience" because while Mel loves her by nature of being her sister and all, she doesn't actually like her. I kind of enjoy their dynamic, because they're not actually the typical "two halves of the same seed" relationship most family-based teams on this show seem to be. It's quite refreshing to see actual dysfunction between two people while still managing to like both of them, you know? They also manage to get tickets.

Last to depart at 5:54am are Momos, who somehow manage to mispronounce the incredibly challenging word "Cape" when reading the clue. Yeah, that's not so promising. Mo tries to claim that "this race is this beast and it's being kind to us", and that if they were to be a Bond film, they'd be Die Another Day. Huh. I would have totally had them pegged as Never Say Never Again. Or maybe The Living Daylights.

So all eight teams are on the same flight to Cape Town, which a plane and the Amazing Red Ribbon help explain to us. The Ribbon seems slightly less bouncy this time for some reason. Maybe it got stomped by an elephant at the last Pit Stop. Hopefully it'll be rejuvenated by the colourful stock footage and African chanting that introduces us to this week's location. Even the "Welcome to Cape Town!" sign at the airport that gets conveniently and hilariously placed at the end of the montage is bright and inviting.

The teams run out of the airport and get into cabs. So, cab race, pretty much. The only team we actually see in their cab is Melana, who once again remind us it's Alana's turn to do the Road Block. Yeah, whatever. A whole batch of teams -- the usual suspects, naturally, plus Melana themselves -- rock up at the beach together and read the clue, which is this week's Road Block. Well, of course it is. This time, the "task that only one team member can perform" seems to have mutated into a task that only one team member can perform and a meaningless piece of filler that the other team member must perform in their partner's absence. Put simply, both team members will get into a waiting car and drive to the Some South African Name Airstrip, where the team member whose performance in this task will actually be counted (the one who wanted "a birds-eye view of Cape Town") will head up in a plane to about 9,000 feet above sea level. From there, the task is simple: Land before the plane does. To assist them, they'll be given a parachute, an expert skydiver, and more harnesses than there are in Tom's porn stash; while the team member who isn't plummeting to the ground will use flares to try and guide them to the landing site. Because the bigass red-and-yellow X marking the spot just isn't enough.

Jeff, Matt, Alana, one of the surfers, and either Asshole or Bambi are doing it. (Mel is presumably silently pissed about having to do something even when it's not her Road Block.) In the farmermobile, Matt explains he's "always wanted to go skydiving", while Tom laughs in what may or may not be jealousy about how Matt's going to be belted to a guy's chest. Mel expresses sheer childish glee that Alana will be punished for not doing a Road Block before now by being hurled out of a perfectly good plane.

Two of the three remaining teams manage to arrive at the right part of the beach to get the clue quickly, with Renae and Dave take it. Mo & Mos, on the other hand, seem to have arrived at a different part of the beach and have to hike to the cluebox. They quickly realise it'd be easier to head back up to the road than to try and run along the beach. Nice plan.

The farmers, the surfers, and Asshole & Bambi have all arrived and the Road Blockers (now confirmed to include Bambi) are off. Wallace and Grommet hug as closely as two probably-heterosexual men can while exactly one of them is wearing skydiving gear. Matt tells his jumpmaster that he wants to go as fast as possible. This may explain how his face sometimes looks like he forgot to open his parachute in certain shots. As Grommet's instructor explains they'll be freefalling for about thirty seconds before they even try to open their parachute, he begins practicing the most important part of any skydive: The protracted "Ohhhhhh, shhiiiiiiiiit!" yell. Bambi struts to the plane she'll soon be leaving, confident she can at least escape from Asshole's yelling for a few minutes. The first plane takes off, while Hallmark and Melana arrive. After some quick Travel Porn, it soon becomes clear that nobody on the ground (Tom, Wallace, and Asshole) actually understands why they are needed. To be honest, neither do I. None of the past skydiving tasks (there have been three skydiving Detours and three skydiving Road Blocks, all on the American version) have required anything of the sort, so there's no real reason to have people standing around using flares. Just before jumping out of the plane, Matt explains in a confessional that his main rason for doing the task is that Tom's already done three Road Blocks, which is as good a reason as any -- after this task, all eight teams have one team member with three Road Blocks to their name while the other has two. Except Melana, of course.

So... yeah. The three leaders all jump without an issue, but with Grommet's yell in tact. The two men confessional about how wonderful and magical it was, but Bambi does not get to speak yet.

By the time Momos manage to get to the cluebox at Dolphin Beach, the tide has come in and almost covers the base of the cluebox. That's not good. Mo explains that he "saw it, [he] kind of wished that [they'd] never found the envelope". And why is that? Well, because there's a "maximum weight restriction" on this challenge. And guess which team has someone heavier than the specified 105kg limit? Mo soliloquizes, "I'm not happy about this!" as they get in their car, where he claims he's "absolutely soiling [himself] right now". Thank Allah their car has windows.

Matt approaches, while Tom giggles from the sidelines with both of their hats perched on their heads. As one does. When he actually does land, Tom snarks that if they were going to aim for a giant X on the ground, the least they could have done is actually landed on it. They are told to drive themselves to Nobel Square at the V&A Waterfront. Grant explains, with a giant statue made of what looks like a bunch of Coke cans and a bunch of dancing shirtless men in the background (SETTLE DOWN, TOM), that there's going to be an Intersection waiting for them. Oh, joy. Have we run out of lame twists that don't work yet? This is that one that's worked approximately never and which requires teams to basically wait around until someone else shows up, then do the next task together. Or, in other words, glorified bunching, since the tasks themselves have never actually required four people to complete them. The farmers leave, Matt telling us, "That was awesome. Oh my God. Never done anything like that before." Perhaps one day he might actually speak in complete sentences.

Grommet lands within about a metre of the X. Oooh. So close, yet so far. (I have this sinking feeling that's going to wind up being another piece of Foreshadowing by the end of the season.) Hair akimbo, they leave. Bambi lands right in the centre of the X. Asshole decides to thank her jumpmaster "for letting her live". There was an option? Reading the clue, Bambi becomes the only person aside from Grant who will correctly pronounce "Nobel" (SPOILER!).

In what is always a bad sign, Jeff's jumpmaster asks him, "What could possibly go wrong?" Oh, don't tempt fate, dude. At least not until Dave arrives. Alana explains in a spot interview that her fear of heights is trumped only by how much she wants to tell Mel to "shut the hell up" about having done all the Road Blocks. That's the spirit. She tells her jumpmaster to take his time putting the safety gear on, and the guy responds, "I thought you were in a race." Yes, but broken bones are going to be kind of a hindrance at some point. Mel confessionals yet AGAIN about how Alana needs to "step up".

Jeff is up in their while Luke sort of waves his flare around like it's 2:00am and I Will Survive is playing. Complete with bowlegged stance. (Again, SETTLE DOWN, TOM.) Jeff jumps. With his arms up to show off his biceps and... whatever those muscles on the side of your chest right near your armpits are called, Luke tells us he hopes Jeff is "enjoying that view". I know I am. There is landing, and there is another Hallmark confessional about how Old People Can Do Anything! (I'll be back in a minute, I'm just getting my barf bucket. Now with a crudely-drawn FBA caricature on the side!) When Jeff is unharnessed, he runs over to Luke, who picks him up like he's got plenty of experience lifting guys in the air. The jumpmaster gives them the clue, as though he actually had it on his person the entire time they were jumping. Right, show. Whatever you say.

Dave strokes his beard when told to relax, then gets in the plane, saying he's "never been so anxious to race to [his] death". Well, that's comforting. The Lucys arrive as Dave's plane takes off, and Renae is busy freaking out about the concept of a two-thousand-seven-hundred-metre fall. Understandable. As she leaves, Sam yells out, "I love you!", and... seriously, how is Seven managing enough restraint to avoid advertising this? Usually they'd be all over girl-on-girl stuff. Is it because the show is sponsored by the being-gay-is-a-choice fundamentalists at Gloria Jean's? Because that's just shameless pandering, much like how there's no (out) gay contestants here, and it's ridiculously offensive. Yes, that's right, Seven has somehow managed to make it offensive to avoid glorifying faux-lesbian antics. How did that happen?

On the ground and out of earshot, Mel tells us, "I would be very surprised if I see her come down, because I really don't think she can do it, but I'll be so proud if she can." Don't quote me on this, but I'm beginning to see exactly why Alana isn't "pulling her weight and doing some stuff". While Alana confirms she's actually attached to her jumpmaster, Mel points out that if she doesn't jump there's no way they can recover. Dun-dun-DUN!

Commercials. Is it wrong that my first thought about the riots in Vancouver because of the Stanley Cup loss was, "Wait a second. Canadians like ice hockey?"

Alana jumps. Crisis averted. She lands, and immmediately wants to throw up. Mel confirms in a solo confessional, in different clothes than she's currently wearing, that she is indeed proud of her sister. In their car on the way to Nobel Square, Mel tells Alana, "I'm proud of you, nerdface." Awww, can you feel the love? It's kind of squelchy.

Dave explains that he "was white as a sheet" before he jumps. Yeah, he doesn't seem to be the sort of person who'd take well to spray tan. He screams and screams and screams some more before landing, at which point the little sheet of tarp lands in such a way it almost looks like an adult diaper. Clue!

Momos arrive, at which point Mo promptly needs to... um, evacuate the dancefloor. But because he's not throwing up on a boat or anything, we don't have to endure closeups of the door. Thank the deity of one's personal choice. Mos explains that Mo has to suck it up and face his fears.

Glary sun.

Renae tells us her main motivation for coming on the race was to conquer her fear of heights. Really? Not "see the world", not "win money", not even "use this as a springboard into a media career"? Sam stands right on the edge of the X to light her flare, which is probably the one place she can guarantee she won't get hit, as Renae jumps. The new and most definitely not improved Horns of Perseverence play as she lands, complete with a kiss from Sam. Awww.

Mo is done and returns to the hangar, where he is told that they're headed straight to the plane. He points out that, due to the fact that they can't really yell over a toilet cubicle door to do it, he hasn't yet received the safety instruction. The jumpmaster says they'll do it on the way to the plane, which surely means it's going to amount to "when I push you out, don't try and come back in" and "don't undo the harness on the way down".

We splitscreen to the Intersection, where the dancers are still performing, and the farmers are now arriving. They realise that they'll have to "wait for another team to rock up" before they can leave, and have a very quick dance (and I use the term loosely) with the performers before sitting down at some point before Asshole and Bambi arrive. I like that they actually bothered to come up with something for the teams to do while they're waiting. There's never usually that much forethought put into the Intersection (or into which tasks it is combined with), to the point where one team wound up waiting for four hours, in the middle of the night, in a Polish winter for another to arrive. Here, it seems like it's a nice day and there's something to do, so it doesn't seem like a meaningless penalty for the teams who get there before there's anyone for them to join with. Matt, Tom, Asshole (SETTLE DOWN, TOM), and Bambi all pretend this isn't the lamest thing they've ever had to do as they agree to work together, before ripping the clue open. It tells them to drive their cars to the Kargo warehouse, attach two cage trailers to their vehicles, load them up with a waiting set of toys and groceries each, then drive to the Intyatyambo Orphanage to deliver them, at which point one of the little potential adoptees will give them the clue. Of course, the pearl clutchers among us are probably going to start complaining about how this is child labour or something.

...How is this a task that requires two teams to work together? They're driving themselves, hooking a trailer to their own car, are delivering the same items in each trailer, and one team's pretty much going to just be following the other to the warehouse and to the orphanage. At the very least, make one member of each team ride in each car or something, just for the potential for conflict over different racing styles or of actual individual character development or something. This is just a pointless waste of time.

On their way out, the farmers, Asshole, and Bambi (let's call them The Farmer Wants A Wife) all pass the incoming Wallace and Grommet, and Asshole can't resist pointing out they're going to have to wait. As though they wouldn't have found out in twenty-six seconds anyway. Wallace and Grommet reach the sign, almost flopping about in the light breeze because this show is so cheap (hell, last week's U-Turn sign looked like it was held out with masking tape), and wonder who's going to be next, and whether they'll work together.

You know who's not coming next? Momos. Mo is busy freaking out and carrying on like a toddler, so much so that we wind up having to go to another set of...

Commercials. Hey, look, a monkey!

Mo jumps, and he takes so long to land in spite of his weight that the network decides that, since everybody's already figured out that the commercials are over, and that the monkey was in fact Leo Sayer, it's a good point to distract us all with the lotto results again. In a confessional, Mos kisses him for doing it, and Mo points out that that's his "second greatest fear in life". At this point, I'm so glad my second greatest fear in life is a world without lube.

Hallmark arrive at the Intersection, where Wallace and Grommet have apparently been waiting for "a half-hour", and they unsurprisingly decide to work together (let's call them Bondi Rescue).

The Farmer Wants A Wife are now at the trailer park, or at least the place where they've parked the trailers, and begin loading their supplies. They've decided to leave Bambi in charge of reading while they do all the grunt work, including asking whether it matters what colour the beanbags they deliver are. Really, Asshole? They leave right as Bondi Rescue arrive, and thanks to their strategy of having Wallace and Jeff stand in the sealed trailers while Grommet and Luke throw supplies at them, they appear to be done in seconds. It helps that the trailers are, what, a quarter full? Charity or not, it doesn't look like they're actually donating that much. Were it not for the clamshell wading pools or the plastic tables, I doubt they'd even need the trailer. They could probably just fit it all into the backs of their cars with their bags.

Melana arrive at the Intersection and sit down to wait. As Dave & Kelly amble up at the slowest speed possible by creatures without shells, Mel decides she and Alana both need to go potty, and run off in search of a toilet. Dave & Kelly arrive and he has a very minor whining fit over being in last place, but it's nothing compared to how he yells incredulously after learning the girls were already here. They team up (naturally becoming The Biggest Loser), but not before he whines in a confessional and Mel tells Alana they're both going to rely on "adult nappies from now on". After a perfect pregnant pause, in which Alana looks at her like she's an idiot and the music comes to a complete stop, Mel looks back with one last little toot from the music. Hee! Dave tells Melana they'll go back to where their car is parked and wait on a nearby road for Melana. Yeah, that'll happen.

The Lucys arrive at the Intersection and quickly realise their going to have to wait for Momos. And if you think Mo's inability to keep it in is going to result in them being called Toddlers & Tiaras for the next little bit, you just earned yourselves five points. As Renae points out to Sam, "It means we're probably going home unless we bust our bums with these boys."

Apparently after a bit of a wait, Momos walk up until the Lucys spot them and yell out for them to "hurry up". As one of the Lucys tell them that "there'll be none of that walkin' either", they leave, Mo daring to wonder whether they're in last place. I wonder what could have possibly made him think that.

Dave & Kelly wait in their car, while Melana realise they're clear on the other side of the (apparently enormous) car park. While Dave sits in his car and bitches some more instead of, say, getting out and trying to look for Melana, the latter decide it would be productive to honk their horn loudly and then have Mel climb onto the car's roof and yell. Because that won't be offensive in a city known for apartheid at ALL.

Toddlers & Tiaras, with the Lucys in front, realise they're lost and somehow end up at a big ferris wheel. At an intersection (a genuine one, not a hokey reality-TV one), they pull up behind a cop, allowing Renae to get out and start begging the cops to lead them to the warehouse. The editors try to convince us the car has the South African equivalent of Inspector Rex in it, while she continues to beg and plead, almost kneeling on the roadside. Mo explains in a confessional that they now "know how they've been winning the race so much", ignoring the fact that the first three legs all took place in taxis and chauffeured jeeps, and that they kind of sucked last week. With the cop realising he's now about to have to give himself a ticket for impeding traffic, he agrees to take them to the warehouse. While Sam thinks "it was very cool", the editors stupidly recycle a soundbite of Mo or Mos saying "this is amazing" twice in a matter of seconds.

Dave and Kelly have suddenly found Melana. As The Biggest Loser heads off, Mel sums up the situation in their car thusly: "Dave's a man. I'm half a man. Alana's a weakling. She's sick. So we've kinda got a two-man team we're working with." And Kelly is a shell of a human being who isn't even worth discussing, it seems. Alana points out, "I jumped out of a plane, I can load a trailer." They're all suddenly at the warehouse, where Kelly takes charge of yelling, Dave and Mel load the supplies, and Alana... appears to be doing little more than make sure nothing's getting crushed by the pool.

Foreboding music and a shot of a bathtub tilted on the roadside welcome us to the impoverished village where the orphanage is, and where The Farmer Wants A Wife have just arrived. Tom points out that people have "literally got shops and houses and everything in shipping containers", while Asshole decides to prove he can read Wikipedia by ignoring the sights in front of him and claiming that "all these poor kids have HIV", which Bambi deems "so sad". Which it would be, if it were factually accurate. Yeah, South Africa has a HUGE problem with the virus and all, but even then it's not THAT bad. They get to the orphanage and begin unloading, the editors including a couple of shots of the kids looking through the fence to make it look all prison-y. While Asshole and Bambi have a quick play with the kids, proving that Chris (it's been so long, was that his actual name?) really isn't much of an Asshole when he's not yelling, while the farmers just sort of stand to the side with their hands on their hips all, "HURRY UP SO WE CAN GET OUR CLUE!" And I realise it's completely the wrong situation in which to point this out, but... either he's stuffed a sock down there, or he's got a really nice bulge. (SETTLE DOWN, TOM.)

Tom calls the experience "a real eye-opener", because apparently Queensland hasn't yet heard about how we no longer deal with children losing their parents by reuniting them in the afterlife. I blame Joh Bjelke-Petersen. Matt says... something, but he's mumbling worse than usual... before a pair of little girls hand Tom and Chris a clue each. (The yellow walls behind them, by the way, were painted by contestants on The Amazing Race Asia a few years back.) While the farmers make their excuses and leave, apparently no longer intersected, Chris and Bambi stay for a few minutes more. Bambi seems to kiss every kid in sight, while Chris lifts one up and marvels about how he wants to take him home. Might be hard smuggling him through Customs, but sure. Just make sure Bambi's in charge of the actual parenting. Chris explains in a confessional that the most shocking part wasn't the living conditions but the kids' happiness. Well, they did just get a crapload of free toys.

Commercials. Hurry up and release the last seasons of Sliders and Kyle XY, DVD industry. I want to pretend to care and actually care about how they end, respectively.

The group formerly known as The Farmer Wants A Wife read the next clue, which confirms they can split up in order to tackle one of the two tasks (each with pros and cons) in this week's Detour. Grant stands in the middle of a vineyard as he explains that this week two tasks, fairly obvious things to do right after visiting an orphanage, are Guns and Rosé. In Guns, you drive to the Valley Gun Club and use rifles to go skeet shooting, hitting nine clay birds before getting the clue. It's less physical, but... you know, GUNS. In Rosé, you drive to a winery, transport a bulky wine barrel up to a storage shed, and use metal buckets and a funnel to fill it with red wine. It's more physical, but the only guns involved will be those between your shoulders and your elbows. There's a bit of Tortoise/Hare in this Detour, with the shooting as the Hare and the wine as the Tortoise, but it's really closer to being the third of the three different types of Detour: Reckless/Chicken. Guns are scary, but it's clearly the faster option (ie. Reckless), while wine is safe, but clearly the slower option (ie. Chicken). In other news, I think we've just surpassed "Russian Bride" and "Russian Snowplow" as the stupidest Detour task titles ever.

We don't see either team actually pick their task, but Bondi Rescue arrive and begin handing out their... oh, dear, this is a Hallmark moment waiting to happen, isn't it? Wallace calls it "overwhelming" how welcome he felt, and Luke tells us he "felt really blessed" to give something to "a community that clearly needed it". Happy Mother's Day, kids! Luke continues about how spending five minutes standing around being mobbed by little kids is going to make him "a better dad" to his son. Good to hear. Both of these teams decide to pick Guns, because you know what makes you a good dad? Shooting things.

The Biggest Loser are finally leaving the warehouse, just in time to see Toddlers & Tiaras and their police escort arriving. While Dave yells out asking if he can get an escort, not realising he's the sort of person more likely to be in the back seat of a cop car rather than being helped by the police, the Lucys begin hitching their trailer, while Momos do the same. It soon becomes clear that the Lucys seem to be falling behind mostly because they can't navigate to save their lives, while Momos seem to be just generally kind of slow and not necessarily very good at anything, to the point they seem to somehow detach not only their trailer but the little knobby thing on the back of their car it attaches to. While she waits in their car at a red light or something, Sam says of Momos, "They're not the sharpest tools in the shed, which is fine. They've got other fantastic qualities." Have we seen them actually be good at anything, aside from making friends and eating fortune cookies?

We've apparently run out of African chanting music we can use, so The Biggest Loser will have to do with the same music from the Cape Town introductory footage as they arrive at the orphanage. They help increase the population density in the cramped yard space by dumping their supplies on the ground. Naturally. Dave confessionals, "The poor little buggers have got absolutely nothing. Uh, they were just over the moon that someone cared enough that someone actually cared enough to so something for 'em." Oh, please. You're the third batch of people today. I'm pretty sure they're over the surprise of being given nappies and plastic tables by now. As he and Mel are given the Detour clue and everyone leaves, he tells one of the kids, "You're my hero!" Oh, gag me. Even Hallmark managed to refrain from that. They both pick the wine task, Melana mostly because they don't have to actually do any of their own navigating.

Loud obnoxious horns assault our eardrums as we cut to the farmers, Matt telling us he hasn't "shot a bloody gun for 20 days or something" and is ready to get out some anger. Tom is so ready he's even taken off his Akubra. Commence man-flailing, Luke. (SETTLE DOWN, TOM.) They're kind of in the middle of nowhere, which is understandable given what they're about to do, but more confusing is why they (and everyone) will be keeping their trailers with them for the remainder of the leg. Wallace and Grommet are just getting out of their car as Hallmark pull in. Matt explains that they've "both been shooting since [they] were about four", while Tom adds, "We had to shoot our feeds before we went off the breast, really." That long ago, huh?

With all that experience, you'd expect them to be doing pretty well, right? Aaaand... miss. And miss. And miss. He blames the gun for being "crooked at the end of it". Oh, please. There are no bent rifles, just bent shooters. Tom manages to get one target shot before he has to switch over to Matt, so that's nice, if a little underwhelming. Wallace tells us he's "never shot at clay targets before, or really shot a gun, so I was a bit hesitant". I somehow suspect he's the sort of guy whose experience with shooting is limited to whatever's in, like, Crash Bandicoot. And yet he still manages to hit four targets. Nice. Meanwhile, Hallmark are about to start. Jeff explains that because he's such a super dad, he was able to explain to Luke how to shoot. Isn't shooting just basically the ultimate point-and-click exercise, though? Especially when you're not loading the gun yourself. As Luke misses a shot, SuperDad tells him to "settle down" (YOU HEARD THE MAN, TOM), and the advice helps him to nail three shots.

At the vineyard we're using for the other Detour task, a bunch of big wooden barrels sit next to a much smaller metal keg with a raceflag on it. Helpfully, the producers have also put a sign there confirming it's the Barrel Collection Point, so that means we won't have people get lost. Probably. Chris and Bambi have arrived (meaning I can't make a "buck shot" pun at her expense), and while she's busy giving a confessional explaining that they needed to roll the barrel up the hill to fill it, he just lifts it up above his head and begins walking. None of this Sisyphus stuff for him, he wants to be Atlas. They get it up there by the time the editors cut to the next shot, for the second part of this challenge. Now, since the barrel's already balanced on its set of stocks or whatever they're called, the only thing left to do is to start filling. To do so, Bambi puts her bucket underneath a big tap at the base of a giant metal vat and turns the tap on, but, as you would expect when you have a huge amount of liquid that's basically pressurised trying to get out, it kind of rushes out in a big spurt, and knocks the poorly-placed bucket over in the process. At this point, the only thing she's really done wrong is put the bucket about an inch to the right of where it shoud be, pretty much. With the huge amount of pressure being released, she struggles to turn the tap back off. He tries to justify his behaviour in this upcoming scene by blaming her for not listening to him, but... yeah, no. He manages to turn the tap off, but not before there's more red on the ground than at that big Spanish tomato fight, and suddenly screams at her, "I SAID WAIT! AND I MEANT IT!" To her credit, she immediately tells him to shut the fuck up, and he walks off to calm down.

They're soon arguing some more, though, and she gets fed up and tells Asshole to do it all himself if he's going to continue to be a pissy little bitch. Fair enough. He does at least acknowledge that yelling some more isn't going to help the situation, and does begin to do the job himself. On the other hand, he starts in with that dead-eyed monotonous voice that's kind of just as bad, quietly berating her for being the only person he's ever met who doesn't listen to him. Well, there was that time with Tom and Luke, but... you know. He tells her, "The reason why that tap flowed like that is NOT because you're an idiot, it's karma," and... seriously, I would be shocked if Seven didn't get at least one complaint for the way they misled the audience in the commercials by cutting out the emphasised "not" in that quote, yet leaving the rest perfectly intact. They didn't even really try and hide the obvious audio jump. He's fairly clearly trying not to be That Guy Who Calls His Girlfriend Names On The Race, for which I can't help but respect him a little, even if the rest of his toolish behaviour makes me want to feed his breeding parts to a dingo. She tells us in a confessional that "he didn't need to scream", while he sits next to her and counters that she didn't need to sit down and do nothing. Back at the winery, he tries to tell her she's not equal to him unless she can carry a wine barrel up that hill. Oh, great. He probably thinks women not being able to do as much work is why communism failed. While the editors are busy recycling that "Your daddy never spanked you when he should have" soundbite from The Argument That Continuity Forgot, we have more important things to do.

Commercials. You know the surefire way to tell if someone is sick instead of faking it? They find Married... With Children entertaining.

We return to Asshole asking Bambi who she's benefiting by sitting on the sidelines instead of getting into a screaming match or helping him. He's... I don't want to agree with him, but if she was doing this for the sake of feminism she should have grabbed a bucket of wine and made him look like Carrie at her prom. He then tries to tell her she needs to apologise for trying to help before he apologises for screaming. In a confessional, she notifies him that they're "not living in the 1920's", and she'll do whatever it takes to help them get the clue faster. As long as he doesn't yell at her, apparently. He wonders what the '20s have to do with anything, and... does he not understand how society works? Times change, people change. Unfortunately, he's still stuck in that Missing Link phase. After yet more arguing about how she doesn't "have the womanness [sic]" to apologise to him, she explains once again why she decided to let him fill the barrel by himself, while he looks around at everything he can possibly see, kind of like he's high.

All that over turning a fucking tap on?

Back at the gun range, Tom hits four targets in a row before missing the last one. I can think of something he can shoot. While waiting for SuperDad to finish, Luke sits atop a lifeguard seat and watches, confessionaling to the extent of "My Daddy Is Teh Gr8est!!1!1!" And SuperDad, too. Luke and Grommet both race to shoot their teams' last targets without any success, but after Wallace and SuperDad take over they get it pretty quickly, as does Tom, getting the clue from a lady with impressively bad frizzy hair. The clue tells them to drive to the Atlantis Dunes (which Grant calls the "Cape Town Dunes"), choose a quadbike each, and ride it along a marked course. Along the way there's fifteen baskets upside down on the course, and once you reach one you can turn it over to find the next clue. The catch? There's only three with clues, while all the rest have hourglasses of various sizes and shapes. If you find a clue, you can go; if you find an hourglass, you've got to wait for the sand to run out before riding to another basket. Blecch. The task wasn't even good the first time they did it (in the second season of The Amazing Race Asia). Did they really need to recycle it? Especially on a leg where the planning has pretty much already guaranteed teams will be pretty close together, and thus that the random luck task has eliminated the need for the Intersection? As they leave, Luke comments that there's "nothin' like a shootout to bring people closer together".

And there's nothing like wine to drive people apart. Asshole and Bambi (or just Asshole) are done filling their barrel, and also get the dune clue. Their drive is silent, until Asshole demands to know what Bambi wants. The more this couple argues, the more I'm thinking the answer is "a vibrator". He explains that while he knows he shouldn't have screamed, Bambi doesn't know where she went wrong. See, there's his problem. What exactly did she do wrong? Turn on a tap? You were going to have to turn the tap on in ten seconds anyway. Shut up, douchebag. Bambi closes the argument by telling us Asshole thinks he's always right, and explaining that it couldn't be further from the truth. She's got a point, but I stopped caring about this argument about five hundred words ago, so.

Oprhanage. Toddlers & Tiaras donate their supplies. Mo explains that his mother died when he was a kid, but that that doesn't compare to being a poor orphan with AIDS. Wow, Classy Muslims! The kids all swarm for hugs as the teams get their clues, causing the Lucys to start crying. I would have thought they'd have been used to charity work, what with being pageant people and all? Having not noticed the dilapidated conditions around them beforehand, Sam comments on them in voiceover as they leave, complete with more background chanting.

A car and its trailer speed down the holiday ro-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-oad. We learn that Dave & Kelly are inside it, but that their map is not. Oh, dear. The moment Dave finds out the map is gone, he tells Kelly they "might as well go home". Good luck getting a replacement vehicle at the bottom of the Indian Ocean. Kelly puts a positive spin on the event in a confessional, telling us she decided to donate it to the orphanage, while Dave complains some more in the car, wondering whether there's somewhere they can get "an ice cream and a coffee". If only they had a map, they could find somewhere. I'm torn. On the one hand, Dave's a whiny tool who gives up at the first sign of trouble. On the other, even Asshole is able to realise that there are two people on the team to share the blame for non-existent drama. Hard to tell which is the lesser of two weevils.

Commercials. No, I'm sorry. Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, and some random gymnast guy don't make me want to buy Proactiv. Although I would like to see the gymnast in a tuck position on my hi-- THE high bar. The.

We return with some out-of-place accordion music to see Dave sitting parked in their car, yelling at Kelly to "get a bloody move on" getting directions from a local supermarket. Is it wrong to notice it looks much, much cleaner than supermarkets around here? Because if it is, I don't want to be right. We get to relive her comment about losing the map, while Dave honks his horn and drives all the other customers away from Crazy Vaclav's Place of Automobiles. Beneath all the honking and yelling (PUT IT IN H!), and having to apologise for her dickhead of a husband, I think she gets directions to travel out past Stellenbosch (home to the Lanzerac Manor, a former Pit Stop). As she returns to the car, he moans some more about being in last, and when Kelly snarks that the only way she can hurry up is if they leave without getting directions, Dave snaps that everyone else left "ten bloody minutes ago". Of course, everyone except Melana and Toddlers & Tiaras was already significantly ahead of him, so it's a moot point and he's a twit. But we all knew that already. She tells him that getting directions was his idea and he can't blame her for doing what he told her to do. Naturally, he tells her, "Shut your hole!", having no recourse and no reason to compare this situation to Hitler. She explains in a confessional that "he yells and he yells and he yells and he yells", and I never would have been able to guess that without her explanation, so thanks.

Their car continues driving as we fade to the dunes, where even a bird of prey is like, "Hmmm... no." The surfers and Hallmark are both at the dunes, and basically there's a bunch of riding and re-explaining the task and it's all very boring. The farmers also arrive. The basic deal here is that the first two teams can pretty much alternate baskets -- one sits out their penalty while the other passes them to the next one, and so on -- but the farmers have no way to narrow down the choices except to stop at every single one. Or to put it another way, it's a penalty for daring to run their own race instead of driving to the dunes with the other two teams. Bad planning, producers.

A splitscreen shows us that Dave & Kelly have somehow beaten Melana to the winery, even with their total balls-up, and they begin rolling their barrel. He explains that they chose the task "because [they're] both pretty good with a bit of red." He does know they're not supposed to drink the entire barrel, right? Melana get there while they're still rolling, and with how slow and awkward it is, it seems to me they should try one of two strategies. Either get it on its side, pick up an edge each, and carry it, or take the fucking cork out and roll it normally. It's not that hard. Dave & Kelly continue their lead to the warehouse, where they begin filling. He feels the need to explain that the producers weren't going to actively encourage drinking and driving, just in case we were all (dare I say it) bloody idiots. Melana arrive and take the filling station closest to where they'd come from, which just happens to be the one that's also farthest away from the wine vats, which Dave deems "pretty silly". Like driving off without directions? As they remove their cork it makes a popping sound, prompting Alana to claim, "Our thing farted!" And here I was, beginning to think she wasn't related to Mel at all.

Dunes. SuperDad & Luke find another hourglass. Luke tells us it's hard to watch the thing when "there's a couple of spankin' Hondas there that you want to hammer round on". I really hope that if this show gets sold internationally, they provide little pop-up subtitles that explain the Aussie slang. And Matt, but that's beside the point right now. Tom suggests they just ride all the way past the other teams, knowing that they've probably already checked the next few baskets already, which doesn't seem like it's a bad idea. More hourglasses for the surfers.

In the Momosmobile, Mo explains that since "the Muslim thing and, uh, alcohol don't really go well together", they're instead headed to the shooting range. Well, of course. The Qu'ran says nothing about shooting being bad, but DON'T YOU DARE BE TIPSY WHEN YOU DO IT! As they arrive, he explains that they get five shots each before they have to switch, which still doesn't help him correct his poor aim. Mos, on the other hand, hits three in a row with his first three shots. Ever. I have no idea whether to be happy for him or concerned that al-Qaeda's going to try and recruit him.

Dave & Kelly are done with the wine, and head off for the dunes. Melana are done not long after, so apparently being farther away from the vats didn't disadvantage them any. They leave, and the Lucys arrive, vowing to "smash it". I thought we left all the lame motivational stuff behind last week? Damn it. They start arguing while moving the barrel, which makes their decision to do this task because the other won't help them Achieve World Peace a little bit ironic. Once they actually get it to the top, though, they miraculously learn to work together.

Dunes. Hallmark manage to find a gigantic hourglass that does not seem to want to empty itself. Damn. Meanwhile, Wallace and Grommet nearly second-guess themselves out of a clue, and the farmers also succeed. Yay, Tom! And the other three too, I suppose! The clue tells them to drive to the Pit Stop at the Rhodes Memorial. Grant explains that it's a memorial for some guy named Rhodes (helpful as always), before adding that "the last team to arrive here MAY be eliminated". The camera guy manages to perform a quick zoom in to Grant's face as he finishes the last bit of his explanation, but since it's not nearly as abrupt as how they've done Phil's explanations of the same bit over the last couple of seasons, it's not nearly as annoying.

The farmers apparently choose to ride back past Hallmark to get to their cars, while Wallace and Grommet continue forwards, but they both return to the carpark at about the same time. Wallace explains that when he saw Matt & Tom, he "just went into greyhound mode". Oh, dear, I've been calling the wrong one Grommet this whole time. Wallace, Grommet, and Matt all seem to sprint ahead of poor Tom, but he catches up by the time they actually get to their vehicles. Tom explains that "it's a lot of fun" with Wallace and Grommet to play with. Oh, my. As both teams rush to leave, Matt very nearly crashes into the surfers, but Tom correctly tells him to settle down (OH, THE IRONY), before explaining in a confessional that "it's definitely more competitive" than it was earlier on. Wallace snidely tells us, "I think [the farmers have] got a U-Turn or a Yield coming their way". Is that our first confirmation there's going to be a Yield at some point in the race? And where do I line up to hug the producers for not making it another U-Turn?

Hallmark themselves are done with their giant hourglass and continue on, skipping the next two baskets. Meanwhile, Asshole and Bambi arrive at the ATVs, where Asshole incredulously says, "I think we're first! Are you kidding? We had the worst day of our lives!" Not yet, you haven't. The first basket is a little tiny hourglass, and at least he seems to have mellowed out enough to be optimistic. Maybe they snuck a few sips on their way out. Kelly & Dave have also turned up at some point, and she could not look less comfortable on her ATV. They find one of the small timers as well.

Momos finish shooting. Clue! Mo comments that they "seemed pretty natural at it" (aside from all the early sucking, I suppose) and Mos blames their "Arab-iness". I... yeah.

Hallmark have found a clue, and are off to see the Wizard. By which I mean Grant, who can't actually give Dave a heart or Alana courage or FBA a brain. Luke comments that he "wouldn't'a wished that timer on anybody else". But since someone else has to get stung by it, why not make it Asshole and Bambi? Asshole yells "Look at the size of that!", happy to finally have an excuse to say those words about anything that wasn't metaphorical, and they begin waiting. Dave & Kelly ride right past, calling themselves "fortunate" that they didn't have to wait for it. Especially since the very next basket contains a bunch of clues.

A couple of dogs watch the Lucys finish. As they head out, the trailer manages to swival around while they're reversing, smashing right into the back corner of their car. Luckily it hits between the fuel tank and the lights, so the damage is only superficial, but still. They basically work out there's nothing they can do except get back in and try again. I wonder whether they would have been made to attach a trailer to a replacement vehicle if the accident had been more severe.

Asshole and Bambi are still waiting at their penalty, Chris voicing over "you can't get any worse luck [sic]". Except for the fact that he's only just realised he's also lost his keys. In a gigantic sandpit. She looks in the surrounding area, being unable to stray too far from the hourglass until it runs out, but he's just kind of moping around. Sitting back on his ATV, he desperately yells out, "How could someone lose a key, man? What's wrong with me?" So much for karma. I almost want to reach through the screen and hug him. Which makes a nice change of wanting to reach through the screen and smother him.

Commercials. In which products of various kinds are advertised.

Bambi uses the chance to point out her lack of screaming at Chris to her advantage, while Chris apologises back at the dunes for losing the keys. He's bleeped for saying "fucking", which is really the one thing in this episode we shouldn't be exposing our kids to. Not his earlier yelling, or Dave's hissy fits, or Alana's "nerdface", but once someone swears? THINK OF THE CHILDREN!

Momos have managed to beat both of the all-female teams to the winery, which makes me think that in addition to being a faster task, the gun range was much closer to the dunes than the winery is. It doesn't stop Melana from arriving very shortly thereafter, though. Melana have a very cute exchange where Alana exclaims, "I'm riding a quad bike!" and Mel responds, "How fun is it? Go faster, though," but for some reason the editors decide to cut to whichever team member is not currently talking, almost as if to make it seem this rare moment of cohesion is happening entirely within their heads. Unfortunately for Alana, the bit where she makes a "Vrrrrrrrrm!" noise isn't taking place in her psyche. They get a tiny hourglass first off. Momos decide to check the first five baskets, then alternate from that point on. As they themselves put it, "Worst. Strategy. Ever." A fly or something crawls across the camera lens as they find the Giant Hourglass of Doom. Meanwhile, Asshole and Bambi ride up to Melana in search of their keys. Alana tells them to keep up the "positive thinking" (which they'd totally been doing all afternoon) and hope it's a non-elimination leg, or that the Lucys are actually lost instead of somehow ahead of everyone still here. Okay, that last one really doesn't require much positive thinking. Mo snarks on how useless hourglasses actually are, right before Melana and then Asshole & Bambi ride past. They both sombrely celebrate there being "no way they're gonna find their keys in this desert".

Elsewhere, Matt and Tom can see the group of giant race flags conspicuously highlighting the Rhodes Memorial, but can't figure out how to get to them. Matt tells us that he'd "just ride [his] bike clean up that bloody hill". Wallace and Grommet are also lost, blaming "the signage", but they manage to get a guy to lead them to it. The farmers also have a guide, which means it's pretty much going to come down to another race between these two for the lead. Again. Wow, this is getting repetitive.

A car parks. A rapid zoom makes sure Grant and the very pretty woman filling the role as this week's greeter are awake and standing behind the mat. The surfers run up and Wallace gives Grommet a hug as the greeter lady welcomes them to Cape Town. Being Team Number One, they also win this week's prize, a "state-of-the-art home entertainment system". So, basically, a $5000 TV. Grommet confessionals, happy to have beaten the cowboys. They're right behind in second, just in case that wasn't an automatic conclusion to make. And you never know, with some of these contestants. But not the farmers. They're not slow, but they're also not fast, if you get my drift. They shake each other's hands, because anything else would just be GAY.

Dunes. The Lucys. Whee! They speed straight up to and past Momos, who actually ARE in last place now. They've decided on the "checking our lucky numbers" strategy. Oh, great, they've somehow managed to turn this into Deal or No Deal. They get an hourglass first off, but Melana's next basket contains a clue. Mel calls her and Alana "comeback queens", which would be relevant if only they'd ever really been in danger at any point in this leg. You know who's a real comeback queen? Asshole, who's just found his car key, conveniently with the Honda logo still visible. Well, he's got the "comeback" part downpat, but he might need some alone time with Tom and Luke to work on the "queen" bit. Bambi goes over to hug him and he tells her he loves her, which totally makes it okay that he was about ready to bash her before or something. Because they're in LOVE. He explains that it was his mistake that brought them together, which is ironic because it was her mistake that led to them becoming a couple. They continue off in search of the clue, which should be the easy part now.

Hallmark arrive at the Pit Stop in third place. You know, it's great that they haven't ignored casting "Alpha Male" teams out of fear they'll dominate, but this is ridiculous. Between Hallmark, the farmers, and Wallace & Grommet, none of them have ever finished a leg outside the top six teams. The way the cast is getting stratified is getting boring. At the moment, you've got these three teams at the head of the pack; Dave & Kelly and Asshole & Bambi in the middle; and the Lucys and Momos at the back; with only Melana really varying to any great degree. If this show gets another season -- and while the ratings are consistently good, Seven's gotta be concerned that Australia's Got Talent is getting two million every week and this isn't -- they've really got to work better at casting all-male teams in particular. Momos are fun but obvious cannon fodder, the surfers are ciphers, and the other two teams are so one-note that the homoeroticism is the only thing really keeping them interesting at this point. There's got to be a way to cast male teams without making them locks for the final three or obvious early boots -- and remember, Momos have really only made it this far because of a string of luck: the Lombok non-elimination, the Detour switchers in Vietnam, Giggle & Cackle's penalty, and FBA's U-Turn. That's not to say they can't cast teams made up of strong men or fat guys respectively, but they've got to have a balance of strengths and weaknesses, the same way co-ed teams and female teams do. You could have two strong guys who suck at working together, or two guys with great social skills but poor navigational ability, or whatever, but it's telling that we're yet to really see any of these three teams come across something they haven't been good at. The closest we've come is Hallmark at the throwing challenge last week, but even then they were able to switch to a task they were brilliant at and left the Detour in fourth place.

Speaking of fourth place? Dave & Kelly.

Asshole and Bambi are riding along, and she suddenly decides that, because she can see a flag at the top of a steep dune, the best thing she could do is go "full pelt" to the top of it and try to turn it into a jump. I suppose the good news for the show is that there are no sharks nearby. She completely ignores Asshole's pleas for her to slow down, and... promptly crashes her vehicle so badly the front-mounted camera is showing... pretty much just sand and a piece of ATV handle. Chris rides over the hill significantly slower and with much less falling, while we hear Chris and an unknown crew member yell out for a medic. Because they can hear you in the middle of all the sand dunes. Off the revelation that there is indeed a fourth wall in television...

Commercials. Hey, look! This episode's going to get finished before the next one airs! That hasn't happened since the first week! Won't get uploaded until the day after, but whatever!

Bambi goes over the hill and crashes AGAIN. What are the odds? Chris rushes to the ATV and manages to get it on its side instead of completely upside-down, which apparently allows Bambi to free herself or something. But the next shot we see shows her a couple of feet away from the bike, so I'm not sure. Maybe they moved her away to stop it from falling on top of her again? I don't think she genuinely managed to land so far away from her quad bike. He asks her, "You okay, my love?", and... seriously, he's not a bad guy. He just needs to drown his short fuse in a wading pool somewhere (SETTLE DOWN, TOM) and learn about the differences between women and couches. As he voices over about how she wouldn't have crashed if she didn't rush ahead, we get two more flashbacks of the crash, and this better not be our Guilin bitchfight. He kneels down besides her and begins to cry about how he loves her and I'M ONLY HUMAN, PEOPLE.

Momos are done with their giant hourglass, but luckily still have Asshole & Bambi and the Lucys searching the dunes as well. And they'd want to be quick, there's only four minutes of episode left!

The medic explains that despite all the drama the crash has generated now and will continue to do for the rest of the season, she's only got a tiny cut on her lip. So shut up about it, because we've already had an annoying lady injure her own face in South Africa, and she didn't complain even once. Before leaving, she and Chris make out a little while wearing their helmets (as you do), and he tells her to let him crash first next time.

The Lucys have a clue, and scream. Chris and Bambi have also found one, so... this is going to turn out as we've been expecting every week to since about Vietnam. Chris and Bambi explain that, pretty much, they're already on the point of Killer Fatigue, which is as welcome as it is unsurprising. Not just because I don't want them to win (though I could certainly handle them winning more than Dave & Kelly), but more so because we haven't really had any major Killer Fatigue since the first All-Stars season. It's more fun when you can see how hard and epic and Amazing the race is than it is when you're wondering whether the producers can come up with any more lame twists to try and hide the fact that it's basically turned into The Amazing Taxi Ride. (Not that there haven't been plenty of lame twists this season, but they're more irritating side-trips rather than the focus of entire episodes, you know?)

Momos also have a clue. Hooray!

It seems the fall out of Chris's pocket has somehow damaged the car keys, so they're not going anywhere for a little while longer. At least not until the Lucys come back and help them get the key working again. Great product placement, Honda! Renae justifies it by pointing out that Momos are still behind them, but in this instance they really shouldn't be helping anybody. I mean, Chris & Bambi have basically given up after today (much like I've given up calling him Asshole again, because the point's already been made) and Momos seem to have a collection of horseshoes and rabbit feet wedged inside them, but still. Momos get to the cars after both teams have left, and note that the situation "is not good, not good at all".


Melana arrive with a hazy purple sky as the backdrop for their being told they're Team Number Five, and Alana does a little jig in celebration. The editors try to get us to believe that the three remaining teams are all racing to the Pit Stop at the same time, and that it's close, but when you get Chris & Bambi and the Lucys both talking about a footrace in decent sunlight and Momos getting lost when it's significantly darker, it's not really close at all. In the end, Sam's smart decision to have Renae grab the bags from behind her before they got to the Pit Stop is the clincher, and they beat Chris & Bambi up the flight of stairs (which Cackle would be complaining about right now) to finish in sixth. This makes Chris & Bambi seventh, which they already know due to alternating between seventh and third since the beginning. Grant's pretty much decorative at this point, it seems. Except for when someone comes last. This week it's Momos, and they are finally eliminated. And as much as the editors tried to make it seem tight, this week was really more about whether it was a non-elimination or not, and whether a team could manage to hit upon two non-eliminations. It's happened before, but it's not happening here. Not tonight. They're experiencing "a hollow feeling" about being booted, "especially after having such a great day". Hiking along the beach is great! Breaking trailers is great! Hourglasses are great! Mo is happy to have conquered his fear of being thrown out of aircraft for being Muslim. Congratulations! They explain in their final confessional that they never gave up (except for that one time) and hope to have busted some of those stereotypes. Now, if you'll excuse them, they have 72 cherries to pop.

Next week: "The teams hit Europe", assuming the race's version of Europe is slightly different from the stock shot of some old buildings with a clearly CGI bike in front of it. "Romance is in the air", which I suppose means it's a good thing Chris is good with a bow and arrow, because then he can dress up as Cupid and get Tom and Luke to finally kiss already. (SETTLE DOWN, TOM.)


  1. "Wallace and Grommet and the farmers "arrived at 4:09pm", and will be departing at the previously non-existent time of 4:09am. But more importantly, where did everyone lose so much fucking time during the last leg?"

    I don't think it was a 12-hour pit stop, more likely, a 14-hour to 15-hour pit stop (unless teams were really bogged down by the mud)

  2. I do wish Mos and Mo hadn't been eliminated, even if they did put the "mosey" into the competition.

    That shrieking by Chris was just astonishing- she was doing the most logical thing! Why on earth would you wait for your partner to tell you when to fill the bucket? I was completely with Anastasia refusing to help with the detour after that, and I'd have cheered if she'd upended the bucket on his head.

    Dave was being such a tool with all that honking. What exactly was he going to do if she came out with no directions? Drive around in circles? I like him, but he grates on me.

    Didn't like the sand dunes task at all. And really, a 45 minute hourglass? Stuff that! Just have them all at 5 minutes!

    Great recap, do keep them coming!