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The Amazing Race 9 - Episode 4 Summary

' Hit Him Again, Hit Him Again, Harder, Harder!' By Estee
Original Airdate: March 21, 2006

You're sure it's safe? Honest? We're outside the United States? North America is far behind us? And we're probably not heading back until the final leg? You promise? Because I've been hurt before. I've had some really bad dreams, and most of them involve shrieking. And clucking. Lots and lots of clucking. If we're back to the real Race, to the biggest factor being the IQ of your taxi driver, to teams paying for their own gas, to this little thing called 'Weaver? That's the chicken, right?', then maybe, maybe, we can all start to heal.

Okay. I'll try to do this. But I swear, if I hear one person celebrating their own methane production, this car is going over the first available cliff...

So: previously on Teams of two? What a concept!, ARNutz stands ready to give you the details -- but if your mouse is on its last ball, here's the quasi-short version. The Race twisted, contorted, and bent over backwards in many unnatural ways in order to do the one thing necessary on every version of the course: get Phil's zipline-owning cousin his lone contract of the last six months. Eric & Jeremy tried to get the phone numbers of all the previous women who had slid down it from the zipline, because anyone who would go down on anything is just their kind of partner. This did not work. BJ & Tyler tried to smoke the zipline. This did not work. Michelle tried to cut the zipline and send Lake to his screaming-slightly-less-loudly-than-usual death. This also did not work, but we were all rooting for her. By the way, in the local language, 'zip-pe-de-do-dah' translates directly to 'triple bunch point': once at the Save Phil's Cousin From Dining On His Own Fingernails Charity Fund, once at a bus station with three departure times available, and finally at an airport with -- gasp! -- one departure time available! That's right, everyone wound up on the same flight to Moscow! They wasted the first twenty minutes of the episode getting to the Really Big Nine-Way Tie! No one ever saw that coming!

Once in Moscow, our teams had to face the Roadblock, which challenged one person with several hard questions. These included 'Why don't you know how to swim?', 'Did you think not being on Survivor would let you avoid the swimsuit quota?' and, just for Wanda, 'We understand that you're afraid of putting your head into any water deeper than six inches, but how do you feel about letting your daughter hold your head under?' Eric & Jeremy's attempt to join the -12 Degrees Taxi Club was aborted when Dani & Danielle, who've been racing around the world on their accents, figures, and streaked hair, ran into that whole 'brains' issue again by leaving their clue pack at the pool. This broke up the horny happy foursome, but don't worry: Girls Gone Wild With Idiots: International Edition will be coming soon to an E! infomercial near you.

This mini-breakup took place in the middle of searching for the Detour, which offered two options. Really. Two options. You were expecting six? It's the ninth season, people: adjust. The teams could try to find a Russian trolley depot that was originally classified as Super-Ultra-Top-Secret-No-Kidding-You-Could-Die-Just-For-Reading-This, which meant their only chance was to first locate one of the six deposed regime generals now working as a taxi driver, and no one liked those odds. Still, it had to be better than the other branch, which challenged Racers to open up to 1,489 kachina dolls, working their way to the interior until they found the one containing Charla, who would give them their next clue. And they had to do this while ignoring Russian music. And Russian dancing. And Lake, who, according to Linda, is currently located just outside Kansas City. Eric & Jeremy continued to show that luck knows no bounds, reason, or taste by finding the clue first and racing to Red Square, where they were supposed to meet Phil. Of course, this is a team whose reading comprehension score on anything that doesn't contain measurements, turn-ons, and the words 'two dollars for the first minute and a dollar-fifty each additional minute' is just about zero, so they failed to notice that all they were doing was -- meeting Phil. This is Phil. Isn't he a nice guy? Don't you pity him for having to deal with this crew? How do you feel about what he's been doing with his hair? And are you still on the Gus Pledge? I am. Let's watch Phil as Eric & Jeremy approach, quietly happy in his certain joy that he won't have to deal with them for more than a few seconds before sending them away. Don't you wish you could say the same thing? You can't. We've got them for the whole episode. But Phil is about to be happy, and let's not keep him waiting for his joy any longer than we have to. After all, this poor man had to deal with the Weavers. He's earned something.

The odds of getting everyone else's lingering karma settled in the next hour-minus of broadcast time are really, really low. Roll opening credits.

And here come Eric & Jeremy. Don't they look happy? They're happy because they think they're in first place. They're happy because they think Red Square is the name of a Russian-founded group sex act. They're happy because they've noticed there's no greeter standing next to Phil, and that means they have their favorite be-yotch all to themselves. They're happy because if they keep winning trips, they're going to wind up going to a country where prostitution is legal, which means that if they can just work out that whole 'man vs. woman' identification issue, their sex lives will finally exist at the low rate of two dollars for the first minute and no discounts for finishing in less than that. And they're happy because ignorance is bliss and that gives them the kind of permanent high most people only experience in two-second bursts from a really good dark chocolate truffle.

They reach Phil, and Phil's happy too! Because -- look! Over at the mat! Slower than Nick's plot arc! More obvious than which minicorp is going to win the current task! Able to completely waste a whole episode in forty-eight excruciating minutes! It's Suuuuuuuperleg! Yes, it's Superleg, unwelcome returnee from a previous season, blessed with story-halting powers beyond those of mortal FOX executives, able to render every action prior to its revelation pointless in the single whip-out of a clue. Superleg, waging a never-ending battle against pacing, elimination episodes, and the mere concept of anything having a point. Superleg, whose appearance means everything that happened in the previous episode, and probably most of what's going to happen in this one, was just there to waste our time.

Phil brings out the clue, and Superleg laughs before taking flight. Slow, pointless flight.

And where is Superleg going? Glad you used. The Racers have to head back to the airport and catch a plane to Frankfurt, Germany. Once they arrive, it's an additional hundred miles by train and taxi hop to the world's premiere Mercedes-Benz factory in the city of Stuttgart, where they'll assemble munitions by hand that will be used to slaughter those of lesser races receive their next clue. So that's one bunch point at the airport, probably another for the train, and a third for the factory. Superleg's been working overtime. But if we're very lucky, the clue might contain the words 'crash test dummies', and since there's just so many things about Eric & Jeremy that either have or should go permanently limp, there's still Hope, which is the second greatest of all treasures. First-greatest would be having Superleg die from a lethal dose of Ratingsovernite.

Eric & Jeremy try to figure out how to get to Frankfurt. After several minutes of careful pondering that was interrupted no more than sixteen times by wondering what a passing Russian woman looks like under her coat, they realize that an airport may be somehow involved. Since there's probably attractive counter attendants who can explain it to them in such a place, they decide to head for one. By the time they agree to check out the big-flying-things place that exists near the city they're actually in, the sun is most of the way down, the earth has slowed on its axis, and the unified field theory has fallen apart from sheer depression. Lake & Michelle arrive a few minutes later, jump several feet in the air when they learn they're the second team there, and then try to pound Phil several feet into the turf when they learn they're leaving again. Fortunately, Phil brought his golf equipment, and Lake is quickly held at the safe six-foot distance for the time it takes him to calm back down to his usual level of incipient mass-murderer. This allows the sun to set the rest of the way before our favorite future police bulletin catches a cab, with Michelle noting that no one else they know can say they've run across Red Square. Not sure, Michelle. Some weird things happen behind closed Southern doors, and if we're very lucky, none of them involve Eric & Jeremy.

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