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'The Amazing Race' Season 17, Episode 3 Recap

by Jackie Schnoop, posted Oct 11th 2010 6:20AM
Uh-oh, a geography quiz on 'The Amazing Race'['The Amazing Race' - 'In Phil We Trust']

OK, teams ... who's ready for a geography quiz? Not just any old quiz, but one on African geography. Any takers? After all, you are on the continent. The very least we'd expect is that you have an inkling about where you might be.

No, don't try to turn this on us. We're not on the show. If we're totally ignorant regarding what country is where on the African continent, the world won't see our epic failure and mock us. For the price of a map, perhaps the kingdom will be lost.

Although the race never left Ghana tonight, we saw treasured glimpses into the culture and people, once again making this the best show ever for vicariously traveling to strange lands. Perhaps that's why 'The Amazing Race' has won so many Emmy Awards. It's not just a typical reality show: The local people take part in it and, unless there are the "Ugly American" team nastiness, it can only be a goodwill ambassador.

Once set loose from the Pit Stop with only about a half-hour between the first and last teams, it was off to a boxing academy. For some the trip was easier than for others. Bad cabbies abound no matter the country. Of course, New York City cabs don't have to deal with herds of yak crossing the road, but Ghana is a different world. Yet boxing seems pretty similar all over the map. In the boxing Roadblock, one team member had to first tape their hands to specification, then hit a speed bag and jump rope, both for 60 seconds.

Chad might have had a rather obnoxious first leg, but he's redeemed himself. Oh, well, that is until he tried to show off jumping the rope and had to start all over! Brook and Claire continued their Superwomen personas and blasted through the boxing. It wasn't the most challenging task ever, but it was interesting to see how the teams approached it.

Before each season, the teams need to repeat to themselves: "Read. The. Clue." They should greet each other in the morning with, "Read the clue." Yep, once again, not reading clues cost teams time. After the boxing the teams had specific directions to deliver supplies to a local primary school. How many in a pair? Apparently one according to many of the teams. They were instructed to take a pair of wheelbarrows with other supplies, but half the teams took only one wheelbarrow. Yikes! "Read the clue!"

The lack of paying attention ("Read the clue!") caused some of the teams to lose ground before they made it to the Detour. While I originally liked the Dumb Ones (Nick & Vicki), his reactions tonight were over the edge. He was the only racer to blame his teammate for making the supplies error. Boo, bad boy, boo -- bad style.

The geography lesson was embarrassing for many. The Princeton boys took their failure in their stride and laughed at themselves, as they may have been the worst of all at locating Ghana on the map. However, what they didn't do in the geography quiz was overshadowed by their success at the Detour -- a choice between "Bicycle Parts" or "Language Arts." The bicycle one, rolling a rim with a stick, looked incredibly tough in the heat. The language one was more cerebral, but easily solved if you read the clue and figured out that the huge decoder on the side of a building gave you all the symbols you need to solve what ended up being a word search puzzle.

The boys sailed through that one and seemed to make incredible time, coming in first at the Pit Stop. The other teams all struggled by not seeing the decoder and switched to the bicycle tire rim task, thus giving Nick the opportunity to blame Vicki a bit more, then catch himself and realize he was being a jerk when her asthma acted up.

There were two very touching moments in tonight's leg. The first had to do with the Ghanaian children. They touched the hearts of all of the teams and their simple games hearkened back to days gone by in our own fast lane technological world. The teams will return to the school after staying overnight at the Pit Stop and work on renovations. Good for the show! Even though simply going through a country helps support local economies, this is one step further.

The second touching moment was Kevin's support of his father as Michael struggled in the bicycle tire rim rolling. Medics had to be called as Michael all but collapsed. The bond between this father and son is amazing. Kevin is the youngest on the race while Michael is the oldest. Kevin encouraged Michael to go on, but he seemed so concerned and went every step of the way with him. If I had to pick a team I want to win (who probably won't), it would be those two. Thankfully, it was the rather standard third leg non-Philimination leg, so they're still in it.

'The Amazing Race' airs Sun., 8PM ET on CBS.

Has Chad redeemed himself?
Yes, he acted like a creep in the first leg but is doing okay now.31 (13.8%)
Nick took his place as the obnoxious one.121 (53.8%)
The jury is still out73 (32.4%)

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10 Comments

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Licia

I pretty much agree with everyone so far. The Ivy League singers also impressed me by being cordial to Samson, which not every team did. Although I'm still rooting for Michael and Kevin; I'd really like to see them make a comeback.

October 11 2010 at 8:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Edward

still can't stand the singing Ivy Leaguers

October 11 2010 at 12:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Edward's comment
steve

the singing is funny edward, thats what they love to do, im hoping they win i went to high school with john

October 11 2010 at 3:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Couchtime With Jill

Nick's a jerk, I hope she dumps him when they finish the race. I've got my money on Team Volleyball since I'd like to see an all-girl team win and they're very strong. But I also love the father/son team and the father/daughter team. Check out my full review of the episode here: http://www.couchtimewithjill.com/

October 11 2010 at 12:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
monica.aikman

Why does everyone keep calling a herd of cows yaks? Have you ever actually seen a yak?

October 11 2010 at 12:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mike

Yeah, Nick's a classic abuser... a jerk until he sees an injury or actual impact from his actions, then it's all, "so sorry, never do it again, etc." She should see the signs and get out now.

October 11 2010 at 11:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mike

No she didn't... I guess you forgot to read the whole entry...

While I do like Kevin and Michael, another team won my alliegence tonight, which surprises me.

Until tonight I was rather annoyed by the Princeton boys and their singing... tonight, I still didn't dig the singing, but when they asked Samson his name, was nice to him, and dealt with him as a human, they won me over. They made the time to save the time, if you know what I mean... it not only is nice and cordial which showcases our country in a positive, but it actually helped their gameplay by connecting with their driver. How many of the "bad cabbies" in this show are a result of some unseen comment or interaction from the teams that cause their driver to screw them? I bet it's happened... more than we know... It didn't cost those boys a thing to be nice, so it was nice to see.

October 11 2010 at 9:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Mike's comment
Chris

I couldn't agree with you more.

As for Nick, I don't care that he apologized when his Girlfriend's asthma started to act up, he was just an a$$hole to her and it was brutal the way her verbally abused her. People make mistakes, gee wiz.

October 11 2010 at 11:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sassy

I agree, Mike. I think those Princeton boys are polite young men and that can get a person a lot of kindness in return. I think a cabbie could screw things up for someone just like a server can ruin a dinner by serving it late and cold, and for the same reasons!

Nick was a complete jerk and it seemed his girlfriend was used to that kind of behavior from him. Red flag!

Great writeup, Jackie.

October 11 2010 at 11:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Edward

you forgot that they will be spending a day fixing the school!

October 11 2010 at 9:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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