Sunday, March 11, 2007

The Amazing Race: How do you spell "defeat"?

"Amazing Race" spoilers coming right up, with talk of the elimination at the top, so tread lightly, RSS readers...

I briefly toyed with titling this post "I hope you're all happy now (again)," but realized that would make the elimination too obvious. But CBS' suggestion that this would be the finish everyone would be talking about sure hinted that Rob and Ambuh would be taking a major, major humble, and they did.

While the prospect of the two of them winning leg after leg was going to grow tiring, and while Rob brought this defeat 100 percent on himself, I'm not jumping with joy over the result. Frankly, I'd rather have Romber, cockiness and all, around over Charla and (especially) Mirna, who are two of the most loathsome people I've ever watched on a reality show. So much to hate: Mirna complaining about her partner's "shortcomings," Mirna yelling at Charla during the signpost task as if Charla were a mentally defective child, Mirna's juvenile (and not even properly-phrased) "See you! Wouldn't want to be you!" taunt to Rob, and both of them calling Amber a bitch. They can't get off my TV fast enough. It's a measure of how much the other teams dislike them, I think, that everybody found Amber's "Got it!" misdirection so funny, even though everyone usually resents Rob and Amber's antics.

At the same time, though, I'm glad that if Rob had to lose early, it wouldn't be a loss he could blame on a broken-down car or any other kind of bad luck (which shows how much I know), but on the inexplicable disappearance of what had until now been a great Racing mind. First he screwed up with his choice of the signpost Detour, which sounded way the hell too complicated when Phil described it, then he misspelled Philippines (now spelled correctly by me) and failed to notice it and worst of all, he refused to listen to Amber when she told him it was time to give up and switch to the other task. It's rare that he's let stubborn pride get in the way of a smart Racing decision, but he buried them on that one and then finished off their fate by insisting on doing the Roadblock, even though he doesn't have the patience for a detail-oriented task like the mail-sorting. Not only did Charla and Mirna lap them on the task, but they must have done it by a wide margin, because there's no way Rob and Amber lose a footrace to them even if Charla has a small headstart.

So they're gone, and now things get interesting. Uchenna and Eric are left as physically strong racers, but neither of their partners are great at that side of the competition. The Cha-Chas, Guidos and Teri and Ian (who needs to watch those tantrums or he'll lose all this new goodwill) are the savviest travelers but are older and/or less in shape than some of the other teams, the beauty queens have no outstanding strengths but no major weaknesses, and Charla and Mirna... well... they're probably due for a non-elimination leg next week, I fear.

What did everybody else think? And is anyone else as eager as I am to watch this week's "Elimination Station" episode on CBS.com to see how grouchy Rob is in sequester?

27 comments:

Jennifer Jaroch said...

Alan, I don't have much to post b/c everything you said about Roba nd Amber's defeat as well as your comments on Mirna/Charla, but mostly, Mirna are EXACTLY what i think. That "shortcomings" line couldn't have been more disgusting and outrageous to hear coming from her.

I really do not think CBS and the producers put enough thought and effort into this seasn of All-Stars. I know they've always been reticent to do an All-Stars and it shows. A friend of mine had a great idea that what would have been really fun to watch would be a contest between all 2nd place finishers. That would make for great racing! :)

Anonymous said...

Psst...you spelled "Philippines" wrong, too. ;)

Ron Templeton said...

Hello Alan...

Actually, it's spelled "Philippines" (1 L, 2 P's), but you were a lot closer than Rob :)

I share your thoughts on this episode. Despite the Romber arrogance, they didn't quite stoop to the level of the Mirnas, and made the race interesting by shifting the strategy of the game. It's amazing how the other teams were always nervous about what they were up to. "Where are Rob and Amber? Maybe they found an earlier flight...let's check with the ticket agent." Teams just couldn't stop thinking about them.

I like Uchenna and Joyce, but they've already won. Beyond them, it's hard to pick a favorite. The gay teams are interesting, but make me cringe sometimes (PLEASE don't kiss on camera like that). The Mirnas are hateful. Eric can be quite vulgar. So on and so on...

This was probably the most entertaining episode yet...and not necessarily because Romber finished last. I just hope that the show continues to be interesting without them. I hate to admit that as much as I was getting tired of seeing them dominate the field and hearing those increasingly arrogant remarks, I kind of wish they were still around.

Mirna needs to go...

Erin said...

Hey!

I completely agree with your assessment. I'm torn about Rob and Amber gone. While they did it to themselves this leg, they are usually a better team than most of the teams left. I guess it just shows how unforgiving the Race can be.

There are so many good teams left though! Once Charla and Mirna get what they deserve (hopefully death, but that is a bit extreme! A next episode elimination will do just fine!), it should be a wide open field! I don't know who to cheer for....

Shelby said...

UGH I am SOOOOO incredibly sad/dissapointed/infuriated/depressed that Romber got eliminated. WHY WHY WHY couldn't it have been a non-elimination round?! If only Rob could spell... *SOB* This show just lost some ratings....well, they lost ME anyhow.


PS - its Philippines.

floretbroccoli said...

The first three legs were edited as the Rob and Amber show, so much so that, at their elimination, my first thought was that the show would be dull now.

It only took me a few seconds to realize that there are still likable and fun teams to root for. Well, at least Ozzy and Danny are still there.

Ted F. said...

"worst of all, he refused to listen to Amber when she told him it was time to give up and switch to the other task."

This is bad teamsmanship, but it was irrelevant: a team that didn't do the signs task perfectly had no chance of getting on the first flight, and it doesn't matter whether they were fifth or seventh going into that partial bunch.

BF said...

The highlight for me? Getting to see the replay of Lance's drive-by "Bitch!"-ing. Cracks me up every time. Also made Mirna's "bitch"-fest towards Amber that much more hypocritical.

Also nice to see the BQ's give credit and (seemingly) genuine thanks to Lyn for the letter.

Not that surprising to see that Patrick's letter to Rob & Amber was filled with the same hate & vitriol that characterized his experience. Grow up, Patrick!

Alan Sepinwall said...

Ted, they were destined for plane #2 no matter what, but they also wound up further back in the plane and therefore had to wait around for a cab to show up.

Then again, Dustin & Kandice should have been sitting near them and they got the first cab out so what do I know? It could just be that his meltdown on the signpost task, coupled with the long layover, really messed with Rob's head and sapped some of his killer instinct.

Adam said...

Rob just screwed up the mail-sorting, throwing things on the ground and showing no kind of patience or plan.

Did they deserve to lose this leg? Yes. Am I happy they're gone? No.

dez said...

The gay teams are interesting, but make me cringe sometimes (PLEASE don't kiss on camera like that).

Why shouldn't they kiss, especially the Guidos, who are long-time partners? Do you say the same thing about the straight couples? Jeez.

I've always thought Romber didn't belong on the Race the first time, let alone now, so I'm glad they're gone early and by Rob's own stubborn jackassery, too. You know I was doing the Snoopy dance during that elimination :-) Gonna watch this ep a few times and savor it (while ff-ing through all of Mirna's shrieking idiocy, of course!). So satisfying!

Jon Delfin said...

I actually found myself hoping this would be a non-elimination leg at the end, even though I know that would have made the Internet explode.

Pete said...

Picking the sign task really didn't matter. They were on that flight with 4 other teams. Not getting the taxi in Argentina with the first bunch sealed their fate as did Rob's insistence to do the roadblock. Those needle in a haystack challenges always involve more luck than skill and their luck ran out.

I am not sad to see them go and it was great to see Rob hoisted on his own petard. And a Red Sox fan going down? What's not to like?

I don't know why anyone would have chosen the sign task. You had a map. It would have been one thing if it was one of those crazy markets with little in the way of directions but with a map to guide you it should have been (and apparently was) easy.

Now we will get a chance to see the other teams. I was sick of the Rob & Amber Hour that the show was the first three weeks.

The Elimination Show on the CBS website was not as interesting as I thought. I did not realize that Romber was not as disliked by the other teams as much as they are the viewing public.

Taleena said...

I can not wait for Charla and Snarla (thanks TWoP!) to get eliminated. I enjoyed watching Rob and Amber because they were good racers. In their first appearence in Amazing Race I laughed my head off when Rob convinced the other teams to skip the same roadblock he was unable to finish. So I am not in the same Hate Romber fan club as some.

On the other hand, I wouldn't have minded their elimination because they have mad etheir million on TV. Same with Uchenna and Joyce and the Guidos.

I find myself cheering Danny and Oswald (as I did their season) and Teri and Ian! and the Beauty Queens! neither of whom I particularly liked in their season.

Eric and Danielle are just weirdly the worst kind of stereotypes of chauvinist and ditz.

Michaela said...

On Regis they said they were about 10 minutes behind at the end. I like them as a team, but watching them win every single leg was getting uncomfortable (like watching the Himbos last season) -- bring us some suspense, kiddos!

Go Chas.

dez said...

On the other hand, I wouldn't have minded their elimination because they have mad etheir million on TV. Same with Uchenna and Joyce and the Guidos.

Did the Guidos make a million off being on the Race? Because they didn't win their season (they were in the wrong state while Rob & Brennan were jumping on the mat for the win).

BF said...

Team Guido did indeed come in 3rd during their season. I guess toasting yourselves with Champagne during the credit sequence leads you to believe they don't need the money.

Kristin said...

Well, I for one, am definitely glad Romber's gone. And I'm glad it was not a by-the-skin-of-their-teeth or some dumb thing like a flat tire on a taxi. They left because they played that last round poorly.

I know everyone on here seems to hate Mirna/Charla...I don't like Mirna either. But Charla? She won my heart the first time they played the game and she carried a SIDE OF BEEF. That little person kicks ass.

In this particular epsiode, when Mirna was being terrible to her, Charla managed to carry a HUGE POLE all by herself and a can in the other hand.

Too bad Charla has to be with her mean-spirited cousin.

I like Ozzy and Danny or Uchenna and Joyce as the winners this time. I still can't get over the first race when Joyce shaved her head! Now that's dedication!

Taleena said...

I thought the Guidos had won their season, I stand corrected.

Last time I admired Charla's grit and I still do. BUT she and her cousin have had the most annoying self-righteous, the-world-owes-me kind of attitude and it drives me nuts.

Ted F. said...

I don't see how they ended up "further back" on the plane. It was a charter flight, and there isn't any evidence that they seated teams according to their earlier finish. (Rob & Amber were sixth to the check-in counter, and seventh to the taxis.)

Alan Sepinwall said...

Rob said in one of his interviews yesterday that they got hung up in Customs for a few minutes, which is why they got out so much later than Guido and the beauty queens. (And, to his credit, he didn't try to blame that for the loss, since it's something that could have happened to anybody.)

I do think that his meltdown on the signpost task really messed with his head. The Rob of season 7 and the first three episodes here wouldn't have insisted on taking this Roadblock, and even if he had, he wouldn't have been so sloppy at it.

Matt said...

I don't think it was just the signpost screw-up. It was that Rob had a long time to just stew in it because of how the leg was structured with the long layover the middle. Had he kept on racing at that point, adrenaline and the like could have played--instead, he was left with nothing to do but berate himself.

Jaynee said...

I'm devastated that Rob and Amber are gone - they were the ones I was rooting for. However at least I can root for the Cha Cha Chas, whom I also love. As for Mirna and Schmirna (they're old TWoP nicknames) - I can't wait for them to be booted. And only because of Mirna. She's despicable. I laughed out loud at her line, "I'm a lawyer and I know when someone is lying," and I thought, "How on earth will you EVER get a client after this show airs?"

dez said...

As for Mirna and Schmirna (they're old TWoP nicknames)

I believe their fellow Racers gave them those appellations, not TWoPpers. Just because you see it on TWoP doesn't mean they invented it :-)

Nate said...

(First visit to the blog, like what I see so far.)

In my opinion, Rob would have insisted on doing the Roadblock no matter what type of task it was. He knew they were on the brink of elimination and I think he HAD to be in control of the situation ... win or lose, it was going to be on him.

I don't want to sound like too much of a Romber partisan, because I'm glad to see they won't be winning and their smugness was getting grating, and I realize they edit out a lot of fluff, but did it seem to you like Rob and ... Joyce(?) had been sorting for a lot less than 20 minutes when Charla and Mirna arrived?

Roadtrippers said...

I'm so sad about this, but I totally watched their departure on the elimination station http://www.cbs.com/primetime/amazing_race11/elimination.php !

-Cheers guys

Anonymous said...

Mirna and Schmirna are the biggest pieces of turds I've ever seen, next to Omagrossa. The only reason they don't come in last every leg is because of luck (flights).
If I were one of the other contestants I would have put Mirna in her place (the hospital, preferebly).