Thus far, I’ve been relatively captivated by the first version of Amazing Race Australia. Tonight’s episode was, however, quite a disappointment.
This is probably the first time any version of the Amazing Race ever brought its contestants to Israel. I don’t recall it happening in either TAR or TAR Asia. There were lots of stunning visuals, but that was about all that this episode had going for it.
You can tell almost for certain that this would be a non-elimination leg due to its placement, but it’s also apt since there were no moments of bunching during the entire leg – which meant that Sam and Renae could only have made up their time lag if another team made a severe mistake. There was no real possibility of making up time just by doing the tasks well as the tasks were relatively straightforward, requiring either brute strength, patience or the ability to recognise symbols and ‘decode’ them. None of these tasks caused any severe problems for any teams. The 3 male teams were so physically fit that carrying that 80kg cross didn’t really cause them any significant delays. The most boring part of the episode was that the teams ended off in the same order that they started in. That is usually the sign of a bad leg.
This episode with the final 4 teams failed to really showcase the strengths of any of the teams and seemed to focus more on the follies of the various teams. I really don’t think the surfer boys are that great. They have just been lucky through the race thus far, and of course, being young, male and fit helps with all the physical tasks in this version of the race.
I’m surprised that at this stage teams still want to cooperate, which was what Jeff and Nathan chose to do at the Roadblock. That makes for very boring television, though decoding Hebrew text isn’t exactly the most ‘exciting’ task too.
Just as well that this was a non-elimination leg, I would have been disappointed to see Sam and Renae go due to such a boring leg. They weren’t exactly racing excellently too (too slow to find clues at winter palace, tripping), but they made no major mistakes and yet couldn’t have caught up because of the nature of the leg and tasks. Not a good leg – let’s hope the next leg in Sri Lanka will be exciting again!