The Amazing Race 15: And They're Off!
- Wednesday, October 07, 2009
And now a quick recap of what happened in the premiere:
For the first time ever, a team was eliminated before the race even left the starting line. Beginning in Los Angeles, the first challenge required teams to identify a license plate (among hundreds, maybe thousand … I wasn't paying that close attention) of the Japanese destination where the teams were headed to for their first leg of the race. Their clue was on the clue. Really! The symbols of the destination were printed at the top of the clue and matched the logo at the top of the correct license plates. There were other Asian license plates mixed in amongst all of the other ones, so many teams selected the wrong ones and were denied when they tried to turn them in to receive their clues.
Ten teams finally figured it out and selected the right license plates and were on their way to Tokyo. The last team left looking at the wall of plates was Team Yogi (Eric and Lisa). And thusly eliminated. Namaste.
Once their flights arrived, the teams followed the clues and found themselves at the taping of a Japanese game show. The studio audience was full of people wearing different colored visors (details to come). The teams lined up around a "Wheel of Fortune" type of contraption where plates of sushi were on display. But wait … there were also Wasabi bombs interspersed between! In order to proceed, one member from each team had to land on a Wasabi bomb, ingest it in under two minutes, open his or her mouth to prove it has been swallowed and then move on.
Two different team members had to ingest the Wasabi bomb TWICE (Maria and Tiffany and Brian and Ericka), as they were unable to finish it in less than two minutes. So I give them each props for that.
One by one, the teams landed on the Wasabi bombs, inhaled and grabbed their clues and a colored flag. The audience members wearing the visors with the same colors had to follow their coordinating team.
The clues lead the teams to a shrine somewhere near a busy intersection in downtown Tokyo (where Phil's narration explained that approximately one million people cross per day). Each team had to guide their audience members (all of them … there were about 20 people following each team) through this congested area and somehow find the shrine.
All teams arrived at the Check-in Mat for that Pit Stop with all of their people in tow, except for Maria and Tiffany who had lost one member in the process and were told they would have to face an upcoming Road Block (later on, they ended up having to find a restaurant which gave them ingredients for a local dish that they had to assemble and serve to someone; they completed this task in good time, plus making up time and staying in the race. These gals have moxie, for sure.). The teams were then given clues that they needed in order to travel to Vietnam. Some made their flight reservations at an Internet café, while others decided to head straight for the airport and try to secure tickets there.
At the ticket counters, Maria and Tiffany were recognized by a poker-playing fan and their secret was out! Sam and Dan seemed a little miffed that someone would lie (the nerve!), but decided that they would continue to keep their own secret of being gay under wraps, especially since it seemed as if Maria and Tiffany were attracted to them. Perhaps they can continue to use this to their advantage. We'll see how long that lasts.
Due to flight availability and who got their tickets first, the teams were dispersed onto two different flights (an hour apart in departure times). The first flight arrived in Vietnam where the rain was pouring like cats and dogs and had caused the waters to rise to a dangerous flood level. The first group of teams crammed into one of the buses to make their way to their destination. And then the other flight landed 30 minutes ahead of schedule. Fun! The second group of teams then proceed to get the second bus to leave ahead of schedule (money talks). And so the tension mounted.
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