Quick thoughts on "The Amazing Race" season finale -- but really, thoughts about the difficulty of sticking with a reality competition show once the player/team you like is eliminated -- coming up just as soon as I change clothes in the back of a taxi...
Victor and Tammy won, which seemed the right outcome based on what I watched of this season. Victor could be overbearing and/or a weasel, but after his meltdown in Transylvania, he worked much better with his sister, and they tended to race harder and smarter than the competition.
Now, I say "based on what I watched" because my interest in the season dropped rapidly after Mel and Mike were eliminated. I'd put on each successive episode, sometimes make it to the end, sometimes not, and find it harder and harder to care, because I lacked either an emotional investment in another team or an admiration for them as pure Racers. (Tammy and Victor were good, but they weren't memorably good, or inventive; they just kept their mistakes, other than Transylvania, to a minimum.)
And that's become an increasing problem for me with virtually every reality show I used to follow more closely. The novelty of the genre in general and these formats in particular is long gone. So unless the show itself is irresistible in some way -- as, I hate to admit it, "American Idol" is for me, and as "Race" has (as it's focused more on character arcs and less on cool challenges and other tests of good vs. bad Racing) stopped being for me -- I have to develop some kind of allegiance to a contestant or team, and they have to last a long way, for me to keep watching. And the more of these shows I watch, the clearer it becomes that the chances of someone I like lasting to the end, let alone winning, are too small to make the time investment in the season as a whole.
"Survivor" already lost me as a concept where I'd seen every iteration I needed to see, and I thought "Race" had as well, until the casting of Mike White got me to give it another try. And for a few weeks, thanks to Mike and Mel, and to some legs that were better-designed than what we got as the season moved along, I got back into the franchise.
But barring the unlikelihood of the show casting another quasi-celebrity whose work and personality I've liked in the past, I suspect this will be the last season I watch on even a semi-regular basis.
What did everybody else think of the finale, and the season as a whole?