I don't know if anybody who reads this has been watching the best reality show on television this season, but Amazing Race 5 has had some great moments so far this year. Whatever show would have a commonplace sceneario like this: start the episode in New Zealand, where a contestant has to climb (for safety, tethered to a rope themselves) a 70 foot rope ladder hanging under a bridge across a river. Once done, traverse across a couple of steel girders under same bridge, then throw themselves off the bridge to the boat waiting below. Then scurry off to Manila where you have to decorate a specialized vehicle, then take that vehicle to a farm where you must use an ox and plow to search for a clue tied to a rope. Finally, race to the 'pit stop' where you may or may not be eliminated.
And it's like that every episode. Fantastic.
Early on in the season, L'il Churna and Smirnoff, the midget and motormouth, were the team you loves to hate. So happy to see them go, so sorry to not have them around anymore to hate (fortunately, someone took their place on the hate plate). There are not many opportunities on television for "little people" to be represented as something other than circus performers or oddities (Kramer's friend on Seinfeld was the only other example I could think of), so it was nice to see Smurna (don't remember her name) being so "normal". Too bad she was saddled with such a bitchy-bitch. Spurna the Taller was an awful person and the little one was seen as awful mostly by association. Get her on a team with a more civilised person and she'd be loved by all, I'm sure. I loved when the cripple-creek brothers yelled "Bitch" in one episode as the devil and her minion drove by. Cut to their car: "Did someone just call me a bitch?!" Priceless.
Now there are four teams remaining as the 2 hour finale looms next week. Last night's episode had me hooting and hollering for joy at the television as perhaps the most ignorant, mean, selfish, petulant reality show player ever finally got a bit of comeuppance. "Oh my god...I hate you" exhaled Colin, defeated, to an ox and/or his mentally abused (and rather useless) girlfriend. To see him trudging through the mud, screaming and lost and desperate and psychotic...that was a wonderful few moments of television. The episode where he almost got arrested because he (wrongly) (arrogantly) refuesed to pay a cabbie the moeny he agreed was classic. I hope they don't win. He is a Total Asshole.
As awful as Colin is, humanity's redemption is shown in the presence of Chip. He's gotta be the perfect reality show contestant. He's a good player of the game, but his (wonderful) personality keeps getting in the way of his success. Kind and generous to a fault, smart, fun, entertaining, empathetic, it's obvious he fully understands what is important in his life, and he won't (can't) let the game ruin his outlook. More than any other contestant, he is taking full advantage of the wonderful opportunities this game provides him. He is respectful of his surroundings and is genuinely thrilled to be wherever he is. His wife Kim seems to have a nice outlook as well, but she's a useless tit as far as her participation in the team effort. I hope they win.
The Bowling Moms, as they're called, are inexplicably still in contention. They are, without question, the most boring team going. I still have no idea who or what they are. They are Fly-Under-The-Radar people, I guess. They're the "oh, are you still here" people at a party. They are vacant of personality, unless you define personality as shrieks and whines and bemoaning of their poor lot in the game. To get to the final four, they haven't so much succeeded as they've not failed as much as the teams that have lost before them. I hope they don't win. If they do, it will most likely be by default, rather than by anything special they do.
The Christian models are a puzzle. They seem genuinely nice, but their faith in the lord really bugs me. I don't understand the logic of someone who claims they'll succeed because God has given them the tools to succeed. Are they saying God gave you the tools, but not Chip and Kim? Why did He refuse those tools to Chip and Kim, or to the Moms? I also got angry at their vanity a couple of weeks ago when they refused (even though it meant they'd likely lose the game) to get their hair cut off. Are you kidding? Still, they're likable enough and if Chip and Kim don't win, I hope they do. Let's pray that they do, shall we?.
I expect Colin and Christie (Miss Christie, you make good victim) will win. But I so don't want them to.
What a great show.