We begin this week with another disclaimer from Phil: This episode of the Amazing Race was filmed before Hurricane Katrina and our hearts go out to all those affected by the Hurricane, and we hope that New Orleans becomes the great city it once was…and well you get the picture.
We learn that the Linz’s were mooned by the Bransens, the Gaghans struggled to keep up with the other teams, the Weavers overcame their fear of the racetrack, and that the Schroeders got lost in their own home town, in true The Amazing Race fashion, the Schroeders were Philimated. For a more in depth summary on what happened last week, read Zipperhead’s summary.
We begin this episode in the dead of night with the Bransen family leaving first at 12:40 am and open their clue to discover that they have to fly 2000 miles to Panama City, Panama. When the teams land they have to travel 31 miles to the Smithsonian tropical research Institute and travel by boat across the Panama Canal to an island and have to find some guy named Ricardo Diaz who will give them their next clue.
Their dad is happy because he doesn’t like being equals with his daughters, and feels like they are carrying him and not the other way around. He wants to be more then just a concierge guy and contribute more to the team. But he’s still super proud of them.
The Paolo’s are second to leave at 12:41 am - OK, now I see where the Bransen dad is coming from. I’d feel pretty bad if I was so outta shape that the Paolo family was just a mere minute behind me. The Paolo mom “just wants to have DJ put his arms around her and say I love you ma.” I think this was supposed to be Kodak moment of some kind, but it’s interrupted by them arguing.
The Linz’s leave next at 12:49 am and one of the Linz’s brothers think that they are going on a spring break trip to Panama City, Florida. Who says that you can’t get a quality education at a state university any more, because Meghan tells her brother that he’s an idiot and that they aren’t going to that Panama City……although maybe he just got confused as to what reality show they were on and thought that they somehow got on Mtv’s Road Rules instead of TAR with all these US roadblocks and detours.
We then cue to the teams trying to figure out if they have to go to the airport or not to get to Panama, obviously being stateside so long has affected everyone’s brain. The first 3 teams finally get to the airport only to discover that the gate is closed, and then because they are so excited to finally leave the country some one breaks the granddaddy of all TAR rules: Never, ever, ever, ever, ever and I mean ever tell the other teams what time the airlines are leaving.
And as fast as you can say rapido, rapido we see the Godlewski sisters or as Vols and ARnutz calls them the Gawdawfulooskee team, leaving. They are fighting over directions. Christine says that she may be bossy, but her ideas all always the best…if you say so chickey.
The Weavers leave next, and they say that they have no need for alliances because they are there as there own family unit-not to mention the fact that you killed any chance for an alliance with any of the other teams on the 8 hour bus ride to Huntsville.
Finally we see the Gaghans, or the Gag-ums as I refer to them as leaving at 1:59 am, and Carissa says it best: “It’s better come in second to last then to be Philimated.”
Finally we are back to the TAR we all know and love with the traditional airport bunching. Can you guess what teams made the first flight? That’s right folks, it’s the Bransen’s, Linz’s and the Paolos. They leave at 6:40am and the other teams leave at 9:40am. The best line of the night comes from I think one of the Gawdawfulooskee sisters, who says to DJ: Be nice to your Mom!! Thank goodness, someone finally put that boy in his place
Part Two: Rapido, Rapido, Andale, Andale!
The teams finally arrive at their destination to discover that the Smithsonian Research Institute doesn’t open till 7:00am, so guess what that means? Everyone’s equal again. Tar Bunching-you gotta love it. Everyone grabs a boat, and apparently the Linz’s are the only team not to know the phrase Rapido, Rapido or Andale, Andale because their boat is slower then anything I’ve ever seen before…everyone passes them, except for the Gag-um’s whose boat driver goes to pick up someone else, putting them in last place - again. The Gawdawfulooskee sisters find poor Ricardo first, and before he even has a chance to utter: “yes, I am Ricardo Diaz” they grab the clue and almost knock him off his hammock and into the jungle. They decide not to use the Fast Forward…Before you can say “Andale, Andale” Phil interrupts us to tell us that there is only one Fast Forward this season, and the team that completes the fast forward first can skip all tasks and go directly to the pitstop.
Now it’s time for the detour: Rhythm or Coos. In Rhythm the teams must go to various places and pick up 4 instruments and take them to a local jazz club and put the instruments in their correct cases. In Coos (Insert your own joke here.) the teams must go and find 5 wooden replicas of local birds and circle the ones that they found on a chart. If the birds they saw don’t match the ones they circled, then they must do the task over again. Did I mention that in order to get to their destinations, the teams must take these awful looking red devil buses??
The Bransens and Weavers decide to go bird watching. The Linzs and Gawdawfulooskee sisters go hunt for instruments. The Paolos and Gag-ums decide to go for the fast forward, which is to at two at a time, go bungee jumping. The Gawdawfulooskee sisters ask a scientist where the buses are. He tells them “It’s an island you idiots, there are no buses.” One of the sisters says that she doesn’t believe him. Where on earth did Phil find these geniuses? Did the teams have to fail some sort of geography test in order to be on the family edition of this show? It takes a while, but then the Gawdawfulooskee sisters realize that they took boats to the island, so they probably have to take boats off the island...... The teams race to their boats, and the Weaver mom tells the Linz’s boat driver to go slowly. And they wonder why they don’t have an alliance with anyone??? The sisters pay their driver more money to beat the Weavers, showing that they do have a little smarts after all...
The Paolos and Gag-ums make it to the bungee place, after Carissa gets knocked unconscious after hitting her head on the van, DJ beats her to the stand and grabs the #1 ticket to the top of the bungee jumping thingy. The Paolos argue all the way up. DJ asks if anyone’s ever died doing this before. Once upon time I’d have wished for his to be the first fatality, but somewhere along the way the kid and family have grown on me. I’m actually liking their bantering. Some one please help me. I think I’ve drunk too much TAR kool-aid. Mama Paolos inspirational words to help her son overcome his fear of heights: “if we don’t do this then the family with the little tykes is going to beat us. I’ll kill ya if you don’t do this.” The Gag-ums watching them argue from the ground are hopeful that DJ will wimp out so that they can get the FF. The Dad and other brother go first, loving every minute of it. Above DJ is having second thoughts…but it’s almost as if he heard the Gag-um kids yelling at him not to do it, because before you know he and Mama Paolo have stepped off the platform.
After it’s all said and done Mama Paolo says: “My dream has come true. DJ wrapped his arms around me, and even if he was afraid of dying, it still counts as a hug, and he said that he loved me. My trip is complete.” The Gag-ums have decided that they’ve had enough of this love fest, and head off to complete the Detour. As the Gag-ums leave, Billy says what they all are feeling: Damn it. When I was his age, my mom would have made me bit a bar of soap for using that word, but that was back in the day when I had to walk 5 miles to school, uphill in the snow with no shoes on.
Faster then you can say El Speedo we are back to the teams completing the Detours. The Gawdawfulooskee sisters and the Linzs have decided to form an alliance against the Weavers. They work together to complete the instrument task. (Which really meant having the brothers carry all the instruments.) The Weavers were the first to complete their task and get their next clue, which was taking the red devil buses to Juan Demostenes Arosemena baseball stadium for a Road block.
The Roadblock task was that one family member had to hit have a base run or home run off a little league world series pitcher. The person chosen would have 3 tries to hit a ball, then they would have to let the other teams have a turn. Rolly was first up, and soon struck out. The Linz’s and Gawdawfulooskee sisters arrived next. When one of the sisters told Sharon that she should just flash the pitcher, why did an image of Knockers pop into my mind? When poor Rolly went up to bat again after Beth Bransen got her hit, one of the Linz brothers started shouting “swing, you fat bastard, swing.” Oh wait. That was the Festers from Season one, wasn’t it?
Any way, taunts were made, and Mrs. Weaver pretty much told the Linz brother to shut the hell up, he wasn’t being encouraging enough to her little Rolly….just like she was encouraging to them when she told the Linz’s boat driver to go slow? hmm…reason number 5001 why they don’t have an alliance with another team. The Linz’s and Weaver’s finally hit a ball, but the Gawdawfulooskee sister, Sharon had a little trouble. So much so that the Gag-ums caught up and beat them. Finally after a painfully long time, Sharon managed to hit the ball after one of her sisters told her to “pretend it’s the boss who wouldn’t give you that raise.” He must’ve been a jerk because she practically had a home run. The sisters also win the funniest line of the night award with: “It’s ok to swear in baseball.”
After completing the roadblocks, the teams were told to make their way to the pit stop for this leg of the race, Mira Flores Locks, the Pacific entrance to the Panama Canal. The Paolo team was team number #1, and won a vacation for 4 to a Rainforest hotel on the Panama Canal. Papa Paolo almost knocked Phil over the railing. The Weavers came in second, and just behind them the Bransens and the Linz’s. There was a race to the finish line between the Gag-ums and the Gawdawfulooskee’s. The sisters turned their Red Devil Bus into a shopping mall tossing clothes here there and everywhere in the hopes that it may be a non-elimination round. On the way to see Phil one of the sisters shouts out that they are off to see the Philimator, and in honor of Phil of the wizard of Tar, I present you this little ditty:
We’re off to see the Philimator, The wonderful Wizard of TAR, We hear that he is a Whiz of a Wiz,
If ever a Wiz of TAR there was, If ever, oh ever there was a Wiz of Tar there was, then Phil is the one because, because, of the wonderful things he does.
I think that Phil took pity on the sisters and since they were much cuter then Brian and Gregg, said that it was a non-elimination round.
But he did take all of their money, their bags, however I really don't think they could've had anything left for him to take for all the clothes they were wearing. Which by the way, thanks to Phil I now know that it's illegal in Panama to wear underwear on top of underwear on top of clothes -- or something like that.
Next week on The Amazing Race: Drat. My Dvr cut out. You’ll just have to read next week's summary and find out!