The Amazing Race 6: Episode 9
Previously, Adam Ant's testicles shrunk about five sizes smaller at the end of the leg. In other news, the Templates are still cheery and dull, the STDs are still screaming at each other, and Hayden self-destructs and drags Aaron down with her, only to be granted a reprieve because it was a non-elimination leg. That means we have only one more non-elimination leg in the future, no more Fast Forwards, and who knows how many Yields left. I hope they have at least two, because someone needs to show the increasingly obnoxious and infantile Goth-Nots a little payback. They are begging for one at the end of this leg. Oh, and there were bunchings as usual.
Credits. I know the Mormodels are long gone from the show but what are the show people thinking when they have the sisters spraying water at each other? The whole scene looks like a corny attempt at making a Mormon Girls Gone Wild show.
Philo comes out wearing something he's probably pilfered from his ex-colleague Jeff Probiscis and explains that the beautiful scenery the camera is showing me is the Pit Stop of the previous leg of the Race, the La Pietra at the "French island of Corsica". Philo wonders whether Hayden and Aaron can do anything now that they have no money after handing the cash to Philo at the end of the previous episode. Since all the cashless Teams in the past have no problems at all in rebounding, excuse me if I am not jumping up and down in my seat in suspense about Aaron and Hayden. Philo also wonders how Hayden and Aaron can rebound from last place. That depends, really. What time will the first stop that the Teams have to go to open? 11:00 am?
12:12 am. The Goth-Nots stand at the starting line and study their clue. Philo comes out to explain that Teams must take a ferry to Nice and locate the next clue in the famous public garden of the city. Rebecca points out the obvious to Adam Ant as they leave, saying that the ferry will not be in operation at the moment. They decide to check out the exact departure time of the ferry at some hotel, which may or may not be the hotel when the Teams stayed for their rest period. Rebecca tells the camera that the Teams have had some good and bad times. I'm sorry, but did she say bad times? They could have fooled me! At the hotel, they learn that the first ferry departs at 11:30 am to Nice. Do the maths - that's a little more than ten hours from now. Hayden and Aaron could have traveled all the way from Corsica to Nice and back in the last episode and still catch up with everyone else today even if they made six hundred toilet stops along the way. Maybe we should reconsider the "Race" part of this show since it's becoming more and more irrelevant with each episode.
2:03 am. The Fre&Ks are ready to go when they could have stayed in until 8:00 am and still have plenty of time to catch a ferry. They count their money and it turns out that all Teams barring the Mollywoods receive $143 for this leg of the Race. Since they use credit cards given to them to purchase seats on airplanes, I don't know why all of a sudden these Teams are given so much money. Are cab fares in France really that expensive all of a sudden? Freddy is wearing geek glasses and sporting a stubble, looking admitted worse for wear. Then again, he's not the only one. All those bunchings and still the Teams are looking worse for wear. Maybe that explains the need for so many bunchings this Season - the Teams actually are composed of anemics and they need breaks in between arduous physical activities. The Fre&Ks also check out the departure time of the ferry from the hotel and learn that they have plenty of time to kill until 11:30 am.
2:13 am. The Superdumbos charge out of the gates. The Tick pronounces "Nice" as nice, as in "Hayden is not a nice person to be with in a small car on a six-thousand mile journey". They also head on back to the hotel and learn of the 11:30 am ferry. The Tick tells the camera that he has lost twenty pounds on this Race. I will try not to think about steroid withdrawal symptoms. The dear has said previously that he doesn't take steroids. Why shouldn't I believe him?
2:14 am. Good morning, Stepford Barbie and Ken. I hope the batteries are recharged for the new leg. Kris has another scintillating tell-all confessional for the camera as they get into their vehicle - the Templates want to stay focused on the Race and not be influenced by other Teams! Gawd, this Team. I want so badly to like them but these two have the vocabulary, wit, and personality of inane seaside paintings gracing the wall of a typical restaurant.
The more this show tries to force the concept that the Templates are All That Is Good And Holy on the Race, the more I wish that the show has done this more interestingly than by flattening any personality of these two people into pancakes. Not to get ahead of myself, really, but when the STDs are gone, there will be no more obvious foils, apart from Kendra and Hayden, for the Templates and they will be even more bland than before.
2:18 am. The STDs are here. Pornathan is not wearing a shirt. Since this is the last recap I have to write with the word "Pornathan" in it, I shall be kind and just say that he really needs to put a shirt on before he gets a chill and die of pneumonia. We don't want that to happen now, do we? As they do their thing, Pornathan yammers to the camera something about going back to basics and other nonsense that make absolutely no sense. It's a good thing that I don't care about what he has to say because otherwise, I would have to spend a long time trying to figure out what he is trying to say.
2:51 am. The Mollywoods get ready to leave. Aaron sighs dryly and says that they have no money. How does he do that - saying such things in such a tone that makes me shiver involuntary with delight? Hayden, thankfully, doesn't say anything at all. She does tell the camera that the Mollywoods will try to remain "positive" from now on because she doesn't want a repeat of the drama of the previous leg. Even now, Hayden still insists that she and Aaron must remain calm when it has been clear all along that the only person blooming psychotic in the Mollywoods is her. Well, at least she has half of a revelation this morning. They return to the hotel where they learn from the Fre&Ks that the Mollywoods will need 120 Euros for the ferry.
All the Teams spent their time at the hotel until it is time to leave for the ferry terminal. The Mollywoods have to separate from the pack in order to find money. Hayden says that they must "bag" for money and Aaron, just because he can, irritates her by correcting her accented manner of saying the word "beg". She tells him to stop being an ass. He's an ass because she makes it too easy for him to be one. The montage of them begging proves one thing: the people in Corsica are stingy like Scrooge. They hand over coins and those who aren't so charitable show the Mollywoods their palms. Beg at the hand, baby! I love that woman who asks the Mollywoods why two able-bodied young people are begging for money so early in the day and what all those cameras following the Mollywoods are for. Hayden stammers and stumbles as she awkwardly tries to explain to the lady that she and Aaron are on the Race. She makes The Amazing Race come off like an escape attempt by crazies from a loonybin so needless to say, the lady doesn't want to give the Mollywoods a single penny. But in the end, they manage to get enough money for the ferry. They catch the ferry in the nick of time so the Teams start the day on equal ground, everything they've done in the previous leg rendered irrelevant, null, and void by the simple act of deliberate bunching on the race designers' part.
The Teams reach the Nice pier and quickly try to flag down any cab that can take each Team to the garden. The STDs manage to get a cab first so they reach the garden and get their clue first. Philo says that Teams must now fly 4,500 miles down to Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, and at the airport, sign up for one of two available charter flights that will take them to a location as yet unspecified by Philo. So to recap, we have the ferry, then the airport, and then the charter flights. Three lovely bunchings in the first fifteen minutes of the show. At the rate we are going, a Team will have to accidentally end up in India instead of Ethiopia in order to create any "Omigod, will they really be doomed?" suspense. As the STDs get back into their cab, they wonder whether to use a travel agent. "Wonder" in this case translates as usual to "shrieking". The Superdumbos are next. They seem so excited to go to "Adidas Ababa" (which is how the Tick says the name of the city). Hey, everyone wants a pair of Adidas, right?
The Goth-Nots show up next and Rebecca starts whining about how horrible Ethiopia will be until Adam Ant tells her to shut up and figure out how to get there first before she starts with the whine. Thank you, Adam. The Model Alliance shows up next, with Fre&Ks leading the way (maybe the Mollywoods' cab driver is related to Hayden). They too leave soon after. In their cab, Kendra wonders to the camera why they need to go to "another Third World country" when they have just left one and concludes that Ethiopia will be "depressing". I think Kendra needs a reality TV show of her own, where she will be dropped in the middle of Senegal and have to survive on her own for the next thirty days. And then, when she finally gets home, she will be reconciled with her Senegalese birth mother and gets to go on Oprah a changed and enlightened woman. Won't that be a great show, Jerry Bonghammer?
Finally, the Templates. Not that it matters. Everyone will be bunched at the airport anyway. They decide to go to a travel agent.
Speaking of which, at the travel agent, Pornathan yells at Tori to shut up because he doesn't like anyone to talk when he's working his magic on the person behind the counter. When the lady behind the counter informs him that the computer system is down so the STDs can make any reservations for the time being, Pornathan yells at Tori as the STDs leave because she should have kept her mouth shut back there. Somehow Pornathan the Mental Magician must have figured out that the computer system would still be working if Tori hadn't opened her mouth. After all, whenever Tori opens her mouth, the world changes drastically.
First to the airport are the Superdumbos. They book themselves on a flight via Rome that departs at 6:05 pm. Despite being told by the ticket counter lady that this is the earliest flight available, they begin to look for alternatives. The Goth-Nots show up soon after, book the same flight, and also scour for alternatives. The Fre&Ks show up and Kendra approaches the Air France counter while Freddy works on the Lufthansa counter. The Superdumbos move in on Air France and ignoring Kendra's annoyed exclamation, proceed to get themselves seats on a flight that apparently leaves earlier, only this time the Superdumbos will have to stay overnight in Rome and then leave for Addis Ababa only the next day. They will arrive in Addis Ababa at 10:00 pm. Kendra once more calls the Superdumbos "barbarians" in her confessional, saying that she is sick of their "childish behavior".
Freddy calls Kendra over to him, probably sensing that something is amiss when Kendra is pouting at the camera and pointing fingers at the Superdumbos. Kendra tells him her sad story and he assures her that it will never happen to her anymore now that he is around. Yes, I can easily see Freddy snapping the Tick in two with his powerful strength. I'm there in the front seat with the popcorns if anyone needs me.
The Goth-Nots learn that the Air France flight the Superdumbos have just got themselves seats on is full. Meanwhile, the Fre&Ks will be on a Lufthansa flight that stops at Cairo instead of Rome and lands at Addis Ababa at 3:00 am, some five hours after the Superdumbos. But does it matter? The Fre&Ks can land at 6:00 am and still make the charter flight. The Mollywoods show up next, spot the Fre&Ks, and get the same seats on the same flight as the Fre&Ks. Do take note that the Teams will land at 3:00 am the day after tomorrow. These people will be spending a whole day waiting at airports and I don't envy them one bit.
The Templates show up and get a completely different flight that stops at Zurich and Cairo on the way to Addis Ababa.
The Superdumbos board their flight and the Tick hits his head on the ceiling. Airplanes are not made to accommodate muscle-bound lugheads. Philo steps out and explains that the Superdumbos will spend the night in Rome and catch a flight to Addis Ababa the next morning.
The STDs finally show up and Tori snags them seats on a flight through Rome on Air Italia. They will leave later but they will meet up with the Superdumbos in the flight from Rome to Addis Ababa. Pornathan calls Tori "victorious" for getting those seats and I wonder what he calls her when he sends her out to do other things for his own benefits. At Rome, it is 9:30 pm when the Superdumbos arrive. Unable to afford accommodations at a hotel, they try to make themselves as comfortable as possible as they bed down at the airport for the night.
5:30 am. Wake up, people. I laugh when Hayden opens her eyes and then quickly sits up, her back straight like a plank, and quickly shakes her head as if she has just been awakened from a nightmare where she is running and running but she is not going anywhere and people who look just like Aaron are laughing at her so OH MY GOD MAKE THEM STOP. Adam Ant decides to snoop around and ends up at the Air Italia counter where he learns of the same flight that the STDs will be taking later today and quickly snaps up tickets for his Team. He tells Rebecca this and she runs straight to the Templates to share the good news. She and Kris share a giggle over how it is okay for them as long as they both reach Addis Ababa. Kris should giggle because an idiot who wants so desperately to be their friend has given them an early morning present but I don't know why that idiot Rebecca is grinning.
As the Templates share a kiss - looking truly evil this time, heh - Adam Ant reams out Rebecca for her big mouth. He has a point. Rebecca proves how mature she is by saying how much she hates hanging out with him because, as she tells Adam, he is as "abusive" as Pornathan is to Tori. This explains why Rebecca and the STDs are best friends in real life and how she watches the show with them at their house. In a spliced-together, badly edited segue to a completely different conversation altogether, she guilt-trips him by saying that they are through and she has wasted two years of her life with him. Oh give me a break - I don't think he is forcing her to sleep with him in the past two years, is he? He tries to, er, sit on her lap, I think, and she rebuffs him. She pulls the hood of her sweater over her head, he does the same thing to his own hood, and they both look like really idiotic role-playing gamers attending a conference but unable to afford actual costumes. She starts talking about she hates it when they fight and the scene ends most uncomfortably with the still hooded Adam pressing his forehead to her hand and sobbing because he loves her and he wants to be with her forever. I don't think he is endearing in a bizarre manner anymore. He's pathetic. She's irritating and just as childish as Adam in her own way. They should both seek therapy.
The Model Alliance's plane takes off first. The remaining three Teams leave shortly after and now everyone is on a flight to Nice. At Rome the next day, the Superdumbos are startled from their bleary still-sleepy haze by the appearance of the STDs, the Goth-Nots, and the Templates by their side at the departure gate. I'd like to imagine that Jon is being sarcastic when he expresses surprise at the Superdumbos spending the night in the airport because surely there is nobody so vapid to actually be sincere when he asks the Superdumbos, "Wow, you spent the night at the airport?" He owns a drinking hole. Kris is a go-go dancing waitress. The both of them cannot be that one-dimensionally insipid, surely!
Philo steps out to explain once more the arrangement of flights between the two Teams. Come on, Philo, it's not that complicated. Everything can be summed up concisely in one sentence: "It doesn't matter - the charter flights leave at 8:00 am and 8:30 am."
10:00 pm. Remember, the first charter flight leaves at 8:00 am the next morning. The Teams that arrive run for the charter flight counter. The Goth-Nots manage to locate it first. The counter is open, what a surprise, because I'm half expecting it to be closed until 7:30 am. The Goth-Nots check in on the first charter flight. The STDs sign up for the second seat of seats. Adam Ant calls the Superdumbos over, explaining to the camera that he'd rather help the Superdumbos than the Templates because the Templates are strong and therefore he doesn't want to face the Templates in the final showdown. The Superdumbos take the remaining available seats for the first charter flight, causing Kris to declare that things suck when the Templates have to settle for the second charter flight.
3:30 am. In the shuttle bus, Freddy stands unsteadily and tells the camera that they have just arrived on Cairo. Aaron, also looking sleepy, thinks that the Fre&Ks and the Mollywoods are last. They have five hours to mull over the pain of coming in last as the second charter flight leaves only at 8:30 am.
8:00 am. The first charter flight takes to the air. The Teams seem surprised that Ethiopia isn't littered with bodies of dead babies like one would expect from the pictures of that country in the media. Adam Ant seems surprised at the lush greenery of the world below him. At 8:30 am, the second plane takes to the air as the first plane lands at Lalibela Airport. The Teams on the first plane rush to the car park where they discover the vehicles allocated to them. Stuck behind the windscreen of each vehicle is a clue. The STDs are the first to reach their vehicle and Pornathan reads the clue impatiently. Philo steps out to explain that Teams must now drive themselves to Lewz Village. Pornathan tries to chat up some local guys around the area, hoping to persuade one of them to tag along with them. Tori, proving that Pornathan isn't the only demented "must be first at all costs" psycho in the Team, screams at him to get moving because the second plane is landing. He tells her to shut up because this situation is somehow different from the many times he screams at her to hurry up because the other Teams are catching up with them. How different? Beats me. In the meantime, the Goth-Nots and the Superdumbos get into their vehicles and take off.
The second trio of Teams get into their vehicles and va-voom off. Kendra, who must really love the taste of her own heel, once more stuffs her entire dainty foot into her mouth. She points out that Lalibela is so much nicer than Dakkar because the people here "choose to live this way" in what she calls "a different kind of poverty". It's reassuring to hear that the people of Lalibela deliberately chooses to be poor in order to put up a cutesy pastoral Third World scene for Kendra to enjoy. Kendra happily points out that even the goats in Lalibela aren't as skinny as the goats in Dakkar. Fat goats and happy poor people - it doesn't take much to reassure Kendra that everything is fine with the world, does it?
Elsewhere, the STDs get out of their vehicle when they spot a young man walking alone in the street. Is this how they recruit people for their porno movies back in LA? Pornathan offers the kid some money and pretty much kidnaps him and stuffs him at the back of the vehicle. Tori wonders whether the kid knows where the STDs are supposed to go. Pornathan tells her that it doesn't matter whether the kid knows or not. I'm pretty sure he is making no sense at all. Pornathan tries to tell the kid in slow English (because if you speak slowly, eventually everyone with understand you) while making slow meaningless gestures with his hands that the STDs are in some Race and they need to be quick. Tori sensibly tells Pornathan that the kid doesn't care what kind of Race the STDs are in and asks her husband to tell the kid that they are in hurry. Pornathan snaps at her to "work" with him. The kid looks like he is wondering whether he will be shagging Pornathan or Tori in his adult film debut. Somewhere else down the road, Hayden and Aaron are apparently not following the Fre&Ks this time around as they stop to ask around for directions.
Lewz Village is exactly the idyllic, romantic, and suspiciously artificial-looking traditional village that tourists will love to visit and go, "Ooh! The poor people in Ethiopia are so cute! Here, take my valuable American dollar and take a photo with me. My conscience will be clear for the rest of the decade!" It has adorable wooden huts that look as if they are designed by the same people that worked on the beach chalets in five-star resorts, there are many happy and so-adorable children running around, and yes, the goats are so cute and chubby. In fact, this place in not representative of the rest of the country because this place is especially created to be a tourist attraction. The locals here speak excellent English, the better to charge a very expensive fee for pretty much everything they have to offer the tourists. No wonder Kendra loves it here. But she is very wrong if she assumes that Lewz Village is exactly what "real" Ethiopia is like.
The clue stand is located at a grassy slope and the Goth-Nots are the first to pull up by the road and start running to it. The Superdumbos show up and the Tick does an impressive tumble along the slope until he finally gets back to his feet and rests his hands on his knees while trying to catch his breath. The Goth-Nots discover that it's now time for a Detour.
Philo comes out to explain things to the audience. Teams that choose "Raise the Roof" will have to take part in helping nine locals to carry a roof to a half-finished shack and place the roof over the shack. For "Mud the Hut", Teams will have to dig out mud from a trench and use their hands to cover an entire wall of a hut with the mud they have collected. It should be a no-brainer of a choice because helping nine people carry a roof is probably one of the easiest Detours they have ever introduced in the Race. But the Superdumbos and the STDs decide to play with mud while the Goth-Nots run over to where the roof awaits.
The Superdumbos begin digging. Pornathan decides to strip down to his tight red boxer-briefs for the Detour. Thank you, Pornathan. My life is now complete because I get to see Pornathan in his underwear. Meanwhile, Rebecca hollers to some kids lingering around and manages to get them to carry the roof while she and Adam pretend to help.
The second set of Teams reach the Lewz Village. The Fre&Ks decide to play with mud while the Mollywoods and the Templates wisely choose to raise the roof. When the latter two Teams run for where the roofs are, they encounter this sweet little girl who greets them with a shy "Hello!" and a luminous smile. Hayden doesn't seem to know what to make of this girl and just says hi back without pausing. Freddy and Kendra have gathered enough mud from the trench and they begin flinging mud at the wall of their shack when Freddy cuts his hand. It's a serious wound because blood is flowing profusely down his fingers when the camera zooms in on his wounded hand. Kendra urges him to stop and get first aid but he waves off her concern and tells her that they must keep working.
The Goth-Nots manage to, er, "help" the kids put the roof over a shack but now one of them has to climb a ladder and put a jug at the top of the roof to complete the Detour. Rebecca who has spent enough time calling Adam a girly nincompoop decides that Adam has to be the one to do the climbing. Naturally, she asks him to go faster. I don't know whether she likes making him do things she knows he cannot do well enough to his satisfaction in order to feel superior or to raise more "Look at poor old me! My boyfriend is so useless, wah wah sob sob!" drama that she seems to enjoy so much. Adam tells Rebecca to shut up because he hasn't put a jug on a roof before. What has Adam done and what can he do, exactly? But he manages to place the jug on the roof so as usual, all that drama from the Goth-Nots is just that: drama and nothing else. The Goth-Nots receive their next clue and learn that they must take two donkeys from a farmer in this village to three miles down the road to the Church of St George, a beautiful church built in the shape of a crucifix and carved into the ground. Also known as the Bet Giorgis, legend has it that King Lalibela ordered the creation of 12 rock churches in town at around 1200 AD, of which the Church of St George is the most majestic. Why shouldn't it be? Legend says that King Lalibela dedicated this church to St George after the saint gently rebuked the King for not having a house dedicated to him. St George was said to have supervised the building of this particular church himself. Even a man of God needs to have the biggest house in the land, eh?
Kendra is really worried about Freddy sticking his bleeding hand into the mud. After all, who knows what could be found in the mud, apart from sharp particles that can cut one's hand? The Race isn't keen on seeing any Team fall behind in the pack but it sure doesn't mind drawing blood and making them vomit. Freddy tries to make a joke about the mud being some kind of holy mud. Model humor - I can't say I really understand it myself.
Rebecca is having problems trying to get her donkey moving. "Move your ass, you ass!" she shouts at her donkey and then laughs because she thinks she has cracked a very funny joke. I don't know, really. When you have to laugh at your own joke to show that it's funny, the joke is most likely not funny at all. She wonders whether there is any instructions on donkey-handling that the unamused farmer can give her. How about "Move your ass from here"? I know, I'm as bad as Rebecca. Adam, on the other hand, has not much problems in getting his ass whipped and moving along. Oh, I am really as bad as Rebecca. Adam tells Rebecca to move her ass like a dog would. The Mollywoods and the Templates get their roof set up and they too start on moving their asses. They manage to beat the Goth-Nots to their asses because the Goth-Nots' asses are just not flexible enough to obey instructions and move. Reason #4,671 why Aaron is hot: he smiles at the camera and says that he is good at guiding asses before pointing his crop at Hayden who is of course out of earshot. He says he is kidding. No, he isn't.
The Superdumbos complete their Detour and are now hauling their asses out of the farm. At the ass farm, Jon asks which one of the asses inside will be his. Nobody volunteers to be his ass because he is too boring for words, so he just picks one. He smiles at the camera because he knows he has just made a funny. Kris, of course, laughs loudly because that's what she is programmed to do whenever Jon cracks a joke. She laughs and laughs and laughs. Bah, these two are creepy. As they take off with their asses hanging out behind them, Adam Ant starts beating his own ass with the crop while begging it to keep moving because he doesn't want to hurt his own ass.
Back at the Mud Shacks, Tori suddenly screams and starts jumping up and down as she runs towards some villagers. Has she realized that her marriage to Pornathan is not a dream but actually real? It turns out that she has hurt herself, although from the angle of the camera, she seems to have pricked her finger. Freddy's injury is more serious because blood isn't seeping from Tori's finger. But Tori keeps screaming until Kendra really cannot take the war siren sound and screams at Pornathan to go help his wife. Tori whimpers as some locals look at her finger. "Help her, you asshole!" Kendra screams at Pornathan. Hey, she's quite adept at giving it good to that asshole. Pornathan just stands there and looks at Tori with an expression that is part annoyance and part bewilderment. The concept of checking whether his wife is hurt is apparently alien to him. Kendra cannot believe that Pornathan isn't running to look at the whimpering Tori and tells Freddy this in an outraged tone while they resume their Detour. Tori says tearfully that she will not be eliminated over her wounded hand while Pornathan tells her that this is just a case of mind over matter. While she's quite ridiculous in behaving as if she's just been stabbed in the gut, will it kill him to just stop for a while and check to see whether she's hurt? A few comforting words won't hurt either, right?
The kids say hello when the Superdumbos move their asses past those kids. The Superdumbos say hello back. The kids are really too cute for words. Mom and Dad have really trained them well to coax donations and candies from tourists. The STDs finish their wall and run for the donkeys. The Fre&Ks finally complete the wall. Kendra worries that the Fre&Ks will be Yielded because they are last. So they know and I now know - there is a stupid Yield somewhere ahead.
Ahead, happy smiling children are performing cute tumbles and hops like the human circus clowns they are trained to be as they lead the Mollywoods to the Church of St George. The STDs are screaming and bickering over Tori's screamfest back in the Mud Shacks because screaming about screaming is always productive. The Fre&Ks actually beat the STDs when it comes to hauling ass. Pornathan finally just takes one donkey from the pen - as opposed to two like the clue asked for - and he and the wife keep quarreling, he in his red underwear still, as they walk with one donkey behind them like an unfunny parody of Three's Company. Tori complains that she doesn't understand how the Fre&Ks can overtake them. Pornathan tells her to be quiet. Of course, she never does.
The Mollywoods are in the lead. After they pass their asses to the man waiting for them, they pass the Yield stand. They have to stand on it and declare that they don't want to Yield anyone. Philo steps out to explain what a Yield is and lets it slip that there is one more Yield left in the remaining course of the Race. The Mollywoods now learn that it is time for a Roadblock. The Roadblock asks for a Team member with an eye for detail. In this Roadblock, Philo explains that the Team member must head inside the Church and approach a priest who will hand them a pendant. This Team member must then locate one "worshipper" of the hundred gathered outside the church that is wearing the exact same pendant around his neck. When approached, this "worshipper" will hand the next clue to the Team member. Aaron, thinking of the six Roadblocks per Team member rule, asks Hayden, who can't even read a map to save her life, to do this one. Hayden hesitates but even she knows that she has to do something and it's better this than climbing a mountain or pulling a rock or who-knows-what. She walks into the church, affecting an appropriate air of solemnity, gets the pendant, and starts walking around the grounds outside the church to look for the man wearing the same pendant as her.
Along the way, she tells the camera that she is affected by the "amazing energy"
of the place. How sweet, another model has discovered religion.
The Superdumbos, the Templates, and the Goth-Nots are approaching the Church with their asses. The Fre&Ks are behind them and making good progress when Kendra experiences an asthma attack. She shrieks that she hasn't had one in fifteen years so... Freddy suggests that maybe she's just hyperventilating and asks her to breathe. I can just picture these two in the future when Kendra's water broke and she screams to be taken to the hospital only to be told by Freddy that maybe she can't control her bladder and should start wearing adult diapers. At any means, Kendra still tries to keep going, something which all those people blasting Kendra on message boards for being "useless" should really take note of. Just because they hate someone and take her actions too personally don't mean that they should start making up things to make Kendra seem worse than she already is, after all. Displaying distasteful ignorance and making tastelessly rude remarks about Third World countries are not the same thing as being a baggage to Freddy. Back to Kendra, she seems to recover from her attack soon after. A young man helps her carry her bag, leading Kendra to tell the camera that these local "children" (the young man looks to be in his teens, mind you) are so sweet and helpful, helping her with her backpack and encouraging her on and all that, and she wants to take one home. Good grief.
For some reason, Pornathan is telling Tori to have some self-respect. Since he is in his stained red underwear, he is the one to talk about dignity.
Hayden locates the man with the same pendant as hers and gets her clue. As she runs back to Aaron, a little boy smiles at her and tells Hayden that his name is Balai. Once more, Hayden seems unsure as to how to deal with children and just stammers out a hello as she flees from Balai. She gives the obligatory "the church is great" yammering to the camera. Honestly, who wants to be caught on film saying that the church smells? She and Aaron learn that they can now walk for about one-mile to the Pit Stop of this leg of the Race, the Lalibela Lookout. The kids, professional hustlers that they are, eagerly race to show the Mollywoods where the Lookout is.
The Superdumbos reach the Church and Captain Liberty is deemed the more observant of the two. She gets the pendant from the priest in the Church and then proceeds to walk straight out of the Church grounds altogether! Only after she reads the clue once more when she has gone in a circle a few times does she go duh and head back to the Church grounds. The Templates in the meantime has Kris doing the Roadblock for her Team and she finishes the task without difficulties, as to be expected from this efficient but too-dull Team.
The Goth-Nots and the Fre&Ks are in the meantime blocked by a procession also heading towards the Church. They are not allowed to pass because the person preventing them from going straight ahead insists that the Teams cannot interfere with what he insists to be a "religious ceremony". The nature of this ceremony is not made clear on the show. At any rate, the two Teams have to make a longer detour around the path. Ahead, the STDs have managed to overtake the Fre&Ks (how they do this is not made clear to me in this episode) only to realize when they try to hand over their single donkey to the man in charge that they are one donkey short. Pornathan who read the clue and took one donkey out of the pen blames Tori for being careless. Should I expect anything else from him? Tori says that they are both done for and says that he should have "helped" her read the clue. How nice that she is willing to overlook the fact that he is the one who did the reading back there.
Not that I don't enjoying seeing the STDs in trouble, but can't Tori argue that she has indeed two donkeys with her and they should let her and her husband proceed on the technicality that Pornathan is indeed a donkey in his own right? (Or should that be two donkeys?)
Captain Liberty, after a few false starts, identify the correct man with the same pendant as hers and receive her clue. On hot pursuit of the Templates, the Superdumbos take off for the Pit Stop.
The Goth-Nots are approaching the Church when they meet the STDs, who are going back the way they came for their other donkey. The STDs asks the Goth-Nots to Yield the Fre&Ks who are close behind the Goth-Nots. And next thing I know, Adam Ant is standing at the Yield mat and asking Rebecca to hurry as he tries to locate the photo of the Fre&Ks to pin up at the Yield board. Huh? Adam Ant explains to the camera that Yielding the Fre&Ks is an act of "self-preservation"? Huh? Is he afraid that Pornathan will kick his ass if he doesn't do what Pornathan tells him to? The STDs are going back where they came from. If the Goth-Nots want to Yield someone, they should Yield the Team who has no chance of ever recovering. In this case, they should Yield the STDs. Yielding the Fre&Ks who are just behind them is asking for payback from the Fre&Ks should the Fre&Ks get their hands on the final Yield and the Goth-Nots happen to be trailing behind the Fre&Ks.
Kendra cries out in dismay when she sees what the Goth-Nots are about to do. But she has problems climbing down a slope despite Freddy's urgings for her to get down and race with him past the Goth-Nots before the Goth-Nots succeed in Yielding them. Because of this, the Goth-Nots get to shout that they have Yielded the Fre&Ks before going their sweet merry way. Freddy blames Kendra for causing them to be Yielded. As they stand by the determined spot and wait until the Yield period is over, Kendra goes all "How dare you?" at Freddy's blaming her and they end up seething at each other. She is so sure that they will be eliminated.
Adam will be doing the Roadblock for the Goth-Nots. Rebecca starts to wish him luck at the top of her voice only to catch herself. She tells the camera that she has to watch her volume in this "holy place". Adam gets the medallion from the priest and then wanders off to who-knows-where. Rebecca tries to alert him to the fact that he is wandering off the church grounds but he just proceeds on his merry way. Rebecca tells the camera that she should have never sent a "woman" to do a "man's job". Am I the only one annoyed by how she keeps confusing her ex-boyfriend's ineptness with the characteristics of her own gender? What, is a woman supposed to be useless in doing things? Adam has issues but Rebecca has them too. They both need therapy.
The STDs retrieve the donkey they left behind and make their way back to the Church. Adam Ant merrily chases after his shadow in the woods. Back at the Yield spot, Kendra is determined to exact payback on the Goth-Nots... somehow. Well, if only she knows how karma is sending Adam down the merry lane of lostville, she'll be a happier woman. Rebecca certainly isn't happy.
The Mollywoods happily greet Philo and the VIP. Philo announces that they are the first Team to arrive and therefore they have won a trip to "exotic Mexico". The Mediterranean is romantic, Europe is exciting, and Mexico is... exotic? Philo tells them that he was getting worried about those two when they came in last in the previous week. Ahem, Philo, may I remind everyone in the house that I have first dibs on Aaron? Stop flirting with him, hussy! Hayden says that coming in last the previous time was a "little kick in the pants" for them to keep going. She hopes that they will continue to do well in this Race. She can try, I suppose. Oh, and if all else fails, maybe she can try gagging herself for the rest of the Race too.
The Superdumbos manage to beat the Templates to the Finishing Mat. How, since Kris completed the Roadblock first, you ask? Don't ask me. The show doesn't care about pertinent details, just the bunchings. Philo tells the Superdumbos that they don't smell too good and Captain Liberty immediately offers to hug Philo. She can have Philo while I take Aaron. That's fair, right? Oh, and the Templates are team number three. They kiss like they always do. Young lovers, so sweet, so idealistic, so freaking boring, sigh.
Adam Ant returns to Rebecca all confused and lost and when she points out where he should've gone, he goes on a mini-breakdown that is best described as Rain Man. I understand how frustrating it is to try and do something so hard only to realize that you've screwed it up anyway but I would be more sympathetic if Adam Ant doesn't act like a doormat all the time, an inept one to boot. I don't mind dorky people but somewhere between the last episode and this one, Adam Ant has stopped being dorky and being instead whiny, immature, and cringe-inducingly emotionally needy. When Adam runs into the church, the Fre&Ks are freed to keep going. It is an uncomfortable moment as Kendra and Rebecca stand side by side as they watch their men run into the church. Maybe it's because Freddy towers over Kendra, but I've never realized how tall Kendra is until I see how much she towers over Rebecca. Kendra gives Rebecca an icy glance and asks her why the Goth-Nots Yield the Fre&Ks and not the STDs. Rebecca, trying not to reveal that she is just a silly chit doing what Pornathan tells her to, tries to be smart by saying in deliberate vagueness, "So many questions!"
Actually I do have a question. Why would Rebecca help a man whom she has described as being "abusive" to his wife? When Adam Ant rightfully ripped her a new one for stupidly helping the Templates, she compared Adam's "abusive" ways to Pornathan's treatment of his wife. The mind boggles as to how she and Adam then happily proceed to jump and do Pornathan's bidding.
Freddy collects his medallion from the priest. Now he and Adam are wandering around the grounds, staring at men intently. Freddy finds the correct man first and he can't resist throwing his arms around the man and nearly buries his face in the man's shoulders. He has a nice, if dramatic, way to expressing his relief, I must say. Adam, on the other hand, is becoming frustrated. So many men, so little time, poor baby. The triumphant Fre&Ks don't tell Rebecca "Take that, missy!" but their backs to Rebecca as they take off to the Pit Stop first will convey the message just as nicely. The STDs have reached the Church and Tori will be doing the Roadblock. The Church will collapse in its foundation should Pornathan attempts to walk into its doors. Tori wisely chooses not to court the wrath of divinity by asking a nearby kid for a shirt that she can wear to cover her upper body. As she walks into the Church, Adam gets his man and returns to Rebecca while complaining all the time that the clue is under his nose. He sounds exactly like a petulant little baby. Rebecca tells him to take it easy because they aren't the last time but he just keeps complaining until he suddenly stops and asks himself, "Who am I shouting at?" He then shuts up and his face becomes a mask of complete serenity. Yup, these two need therapy, lots of therapy. Tori gets her man too shortly after (or the editing would like me to believe) and take off with Pornathan.
The Fre&Ks step on the Finishing Mat as team number four. Kendra comments that the Fre&Ks know how whom to trust on this Race while expressing relief that they are not going home today.
Knowing that all is lost but intending to go out in flair, Pornathan asks his contingent of local kiddies to do some sort of cheer and punch their fists in the air as the STDs walk to the Pit Stop. The show tries to create suspense by presenting a showdown between the STDs and the Goth-Nots, but I've too disenchanted by so many bunchings on this episode alone that I am beyond being excited by this show's tricks. The Goth-Nots are team number five.
So at last, finally, the STDs step in last and this is, woo-hoo, an elimination round. Pornathan must be hoping that he would look like some hero surrounded by kids and a weeping wife by his side but come on, he is dirty, he is wearing his underwear, and he is a creepy old bastard. While I still think that this exit is too dignified for this jerk - I'd prefer mud and blood all over him as he crawls on his stomach to the mat, his body covered by wasp stings and snake bites - I'm so happy to see him and Tori gone that I'd take anything I can get. Philo tells the STDs that they are eliminated and I tell them for him, "Yeah, yeah, now get the hell out of here and don't come back, assholes!" Tori weeps. She really wants to win, poor dear. She says that she loves every minute of the Race (especially the moment when he shoves her in front of the camera and she falls, I bet) and they smooch on the roadside like I bloody care to see them smooch. JUST GET LOST ALREADY. SCRAM!
Phew. They're gone. At last.
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