Monday, October 1, 2012

Doug Reviews The Amazing Race

I’m so glad The Amazing Race is back!

The Amazing Race is my favorite game show. I love how they basically take the concept of the physical challenges from Double Dare and turn them into a race around the world. If you are among the millions who want to go on the show, pick a partner and evaluate your relationship. In order to qualify, the two of you must fall into one or more of the following ten categories:

Meathead Couple- CBS usually shows us this couple doing various workout routines during the introduction bio. The guys are always wearing those strange lady tank tops, and the girls wear yoga pant and STRICTLY YOGA PANTS! This team is always a safe bet to take in your office pool to win it all.

The challenges are made for them, because they typically require basic repetition of the same tedious activity over and over again, which is perfect for people who track their sets and reps. Plus, since this team is in peak physical condition, they are usually in at least the final three (however, they are prone to leaving backpacks/passports/jackets behind, costing them the race).

Lifelong Friends Nerd Couple-  A fairly broad category. I use ‘nerd’ in the title, but really it’s anything that makes the pair social outcasts: Band geeks, choir boys, hillbillies, comic book experts, and medieval war re-enactors. Basically, anything that CBS wants us to point and laugh at fits into this category (this is usually a pretty strong team, and is probably a good pick for top three).  

Siblings Couple- This team can be two brothers, two sisters, or one of each. They usually fight a lot, but tend to do well because they've been on the real life amazing race with each other their whole lives. My favorite version of this couple is always the half and half version. The producers (I assume intentionally) always seem to pick a brother/sister combo with weird sexual tension. You know, the kind that “used to wrestle each other a lot when they were teenagers?” (Usually a top three finisher)

Sob Story Couple- Does your partner have a nose for an ear? Are you having trouble getting over the loss of a distant relative that you never met? Have you been self-diagnosed with an imaginary handicap?  Are you comfortable exploiting that handicap? If so, you might be a perfect contestant for The Amazing Race

Alternative Couple- I like how people with tattoos and piercings still think their appearance has any sort of shock value to the public. One of the members of this team will say, “All these people are gonna see us and make a judgment, they’re gonna totally underestimate us. They won’t realize we can read maps and drive cars. We have the advantage!”

Every time I hear that I giggle. Do these people think its 1983? Do they know the rest of us have been in public in the last 20 years? Do they know we have internet?  Yeah, we get it, you read Kurt Vonnegut and you’re a super hip nihilist. We don’t care, leave us alone.

Divorcees Couple- This is usually two catty women who have recently been through a divorce. They are uncomfortably self-absorbed and insecure, and they like to pretend they don’t feel as lonely and fragile as they clearly are.

Token Gay Couple- Look, enough already. We know, gay guys have high pitched voices and like to wave both hands in front of them and say witty things in a sing song way, like “I don’t know if that cowboy needs a new saddle but I’d sure like him to tan my hide!” and “Oh Bruce…you’re so bad!”

Give me a break. Can’t we just get some normal people who happen to be gay rather than trotting out the same faggy Richard Simmons impersonator each season?

Token Black Couple- CBS always makes sure to include a black couple, just to make sure we all know how progressive of a network CBS is (but don’t get nervous, there’s usually only one black team. I mean, CBS still wants ratings, amirite?).

Vaguely Familiar Couple- If you’re not a big enough Celebrity to go on Celebrity Boot CampDancing with the StarsThe Surreal LifeThe Celebrity Apprentice, Hollywood Squares or The Steve Harvey Show, but you still need some money and you miss the brief limelight you once glimpsed, hey, maybe The Amazing Race is hiring!

Old Couple- The old couple is always my favorite. Every season, during the first episode bios, the old couple will talk about how vibrant and young they feel, and they usually say something like “these younger teams better watch out! We’re here to show them a thing or two!”

They usually follow this statement by immediately being eliminated first from the race. And look, I’m not here to judge, but it’s almost always because they were either too old and confused or too old and weak to complete a challenge.

Think you can cut it? The competition is tough, but I love it. Nothing is more brutal than watching a team eat a slop bucket filled with fried monkey turds and then cheering them on as they wade through a river of cow’s blood to the checkpoint in last place. You can feel the will to live escape from their body as Phil states, “I’m sorry, but you have bean eliminated from the race.” (I love how Phil says “been”)

If you are up for the challenge, and you still feel like you've got what it takes, head on over to for your chance to be on The Amazing Race! 

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