'The Amazing Race: Unfinished Business' ousts Mel and Mike White
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 03/07/2011
The Amazing Race: Unfinished Business eliminated fourteenth-season Racers Mel White and Mike White during Sunday night's broadcast of the CBS reality competition's all-stars edition.
The "Father and Son" team became the second team eliminated from the around-the-world competition after they arrived at the Race's third Pit Stop in the Minamiashigara area of Tokyo, Japan.
"I think we've gotten closer together than we've ever been and that's a pretty good gift to me. He knew he was going to lose the Race by telling me to get out, but he said, 'Get out.' He cared more about me than he cared about the Race and it feels good," Mel said.
"My Dad, he will never give up and that's why sometimes you have to give up for him," Mike added.
The third episode of The Amazing Race: Unfinished Business' second all-stars edition began with the competition's 10 remaining teams leaving the second Pit Stop in Broken Hill, a small town about 675 miles from Sydney, Australia, and taking an overnight train back Sydney.
Since they had been the team to finish in first place at the Pit Stop in Broken Hill, fourteenth-season "Friends" Zev Glassenberg and Justin Kanew were the first team to depart from Sydney at 11:57AM.
They were then followed by fifteenth-season "Harlem Globetrotters" Nathaniel "The Big Easy" Lofton and Herbert "Flight Time" Lang at 12:05PM, sixteenth-season "Cowboys" team of Jet McCoy and his brother Cord McCoy at 12:08PM, fourteenth-season "Sisters" Jennifer Hoffman and LaKisha Hoffman 12:09PM, fourteenth-season "Mother and Son" team of Margie Adams and Luke Adams at 12:10PM, and Mel and Mike at 12:14PM.
Following Mel and Mike were twelfth-season "Dating Goths" Vyxsin Fiala and Kent Kaliber (who was known as Kynt Cothron during his initial Race edition) at 12:16PM, fourteenth-season "Former NFL Cheerleaders" Cara Rosenthal and Jaime Edmondson at 12:24PM, seventeenth-season "Father and Daughter" team of Gary Ervin and Mallory Ervin at 12:26PM, and twelfth-season "Father and Daughter" team of Ronald Hsu and Christina Hsu at 12:28PM.
Upon opening their departure clues, the teams were instructed to fly 5,000 miles from Sydney, Australia to Tokyo, Japan where they would have to make their way to a rotating parking garage and receive their next clue.
Despite their scattered Pit Stop departure times in which Ron and Christina were about one half hour behind Zev and Justin, the teams had an opportunity to catch up with each other at the airport, where most of the teams were told the earliest available flight would be a connector flight, which would get them into Tokyo at 6:00AM.
However, all the teams knew that taking a connector flight would pose the possibility of getting stuck with extra stops or delays, so it was a risky decision that had to be made in order to allow the chance to arrive in Tokyo 15 minutes ahead of the other teams -- who would arrive in Tokyo on the second available flight, which was a direct flight, at 6:15AM.
Mel and Mike and Margie and Luke worked together in attempt to secure the earliest flight, while Flight Time and Big Easy gave Zev and Justin their seats on the connector flight due to land at 6:00AM because Zev and Justin had told them the "I am between the devil and the deep blue sea" clue during a previous leg of the Race. While Zev and Justin were gracious to accept their offer, Flight Time and Big Easy said they didn't even like the idea of taking a connector flight because it could have gotten delayed.
Zev and Justin, Margie and Luke, Mel and Mike, Kent and Vyxsin, and Jaime and Cara all got on the connector flight due to arrive in Tokyo at 6:00AM, while Flight Time and Big Easy, Jet and Cord, Kisha and Jen, Gary and Mallory, and Ron and Christina took the direct flight due to arrive in Tokyo at 6:15AM.
As was expected an feared, there ended up being a problem with the engine on 6:00AM connector flight, so the teams had to face a delay that lasted over an hour. Mike and Mel were experiencing deja vu, as they had also been on the plane in a previous leg of the Race that got delayed because there was a sick passenger onboard that needed immediate medical attention.
"We're not having good luck with planes so far," Mike told Mel.
Meanwhile, the teams on the other plane learned they were the number one flight arriving in Tokyo at 6:15AM and were thrilled with the decision they had made. The connector flight finally arrived in Tokyo at 7:20AM.
Gary and Mallory were the first team to receive their clue at the rotating parking garage, and they were then followed by Flight Time and Big Easy, Kisha and Jen, Ron and Christina, Jet and Cord, Margie and Luke, Mel and Mike, Kent and Vyxsin, Jaime and Cara, and Zev and Justin.
Upon opening their clues, the teams were instructed to drive to the city of Kamakura and then find Tsurugaoka Hachimangu and go to the Yabusame Dojo where they would receive their next clue.
Kisha and Jen, Gary and Mallory and Ron and Christina had a little trouble finding the location but eventually arrived and found the Yabusame Dojo before the other teams, while Jet and Cord got lost and Kent and Vyxsin and Mike and Mel discussed the directions using maps.
In addition, Jaime and Cara were working alone and Jaime was not used to driving on the left-hand side of the road. On their way to Kamakura, the girls drove their car too far to left side and hit the rear-view mirror of another vehicle. The man driving the hit vehicle called the police and reported the accident, despite the girls' offer to just give him money. Therefore, Jaime and Cara had to wait for the police to arrive before they could continue on with the Race.
"I think he made it a lot more dramatic than it needed to be when it was literally just a mirror," Jaime said frustrated because the accident had put them far behind the other teams in last place.
Ron and Christina were the first team to arrive at Tsurugaoka Hachimangu and retrieve the teams' next set of clues, which instructed one member of each team to complete a Roadblock task. They were followed by Gary and Mallory, Flight Time and Big Easy, Kisha and Jen, Zev and Justin, Kent and Vyxsin, Mel and Mike, Margie and Luke, Jet and Cord, and finally Jaime and Cara.
For the Roadblock, one member of each team had to dress as a samurai and learn the proper Yabusame ritual and techniques for shooting a bow and arrow from on top of a wooden horse. The first step required the team members to observe an ongoing demonstration, learn a ritual, and then perform the ritual in front of a master. Once they had performed the ritual correctly, the teams would then be spun on the wooden horse as they attempted to hit a target with their bow and arrow. Upon hitting the target successfully, the teams would then receive their next clue.
Ron opted to do the Roadblock for his team, and he was later joined by Gary, Flight Time, Jen, Justin, Kent, Luke, Mike, Cord, and Jaime.
Many of the team members struggled perform the rituals correctly for the masters, but Jen's good memory and concentration allowed her to finish the task fairly quickly as she and Kisha were the first team to complete the Roadblock task. They were then followed by Zev and Justin, Gary and Mallory, Flight Time and Big Easy, Ron and Christina, Margie and Luke, Jet and Cord, Kent and Vyxsin, Mike and Mel, and Jaime and Cara.
After finishing the Roadblock, the teams were instructed to drive to the Minamiashigara area and find the Kintaro statue near the Daiyuzan Railway Station.
Zev and Justin were the first team to arrive at the Kintaro statue were followed by Gary and Mallory, Flight Time and Big Easy, Ron and Christina, Kisha and Jen, Margie and Luke, Jet and Cord, Kent and Vyxsin, Mel and Mike, and Jaime and Cara.
The teams then learned it was time for them to complete one of two Detour tasks: "Prayer of Purity" or "Frog of Luck."
"Prayer of Purity" required the teams to take part in a Shinto religious cleansing ritual in which they had to put on traditional wardrobe and learn a prayer that is both vocal and physical and then stand under a waterfall coming directly from the snows of Mount Fuji. The teams had to stand under the 45-degree water for one minute in order to receive their next clue.
"Frog of Luck" required the teams to strip down to a bare minimum of clothing and enter an enormous mud pit. They then would be pelted with mud by participants and observers also in the mud pit with them, while searching for a buried frog, a symbol for luck in Japan.
Zev and Justin, Gary and Mallory, Kisha and Jen, Jet and Cord, Kent and Vyxsin, Margie and Luke, Mel and Mike, and Jaime and Cara all opted to do the "Frog of Luck" task, while Flight Time and Big Easy and Ron and Christina chose to attempt the "Prayer of Purity" task.
Zev and Justin were the first team to complete the Detour task, and they were then followed by Gary and Mallory, Flight Time and Big Easy, Ron and Christina, Kisha and Jen, Jet and Cord, Kent and Vyxsin, Margie and Luke, and Jaime and Cara.
Ron and Christina couldn't find their fanny pack after completing the "Prayer of Purity" task, but when they finally discovered it, they realized Flight Time and Big Easy had moved it from its original spot to the men's changing room where they had to waste time looking for it and lost whatever lead they felt they gained.
Mel and Mike were not able to complete the "Frog of Luck" task because they came unbearably cold and sought treatment in a nearby medical van. Mike was worried that it was too much for his Dad and was more concerned about his safety than completing the Detour, allowing Jaime and Cara to move ahead of them in the Race.
"I'd rather die here with you than home in bed," Mel told his son.
After completing their Detour tasks, the teams were instructed to drive themselves to the Pit Stop at Commodore Perrys Landing in Kurihama.
Zev and Justin were the first team to find The Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan at Commodore Perrys Landing in Kurihama, claiming first place. They then learned they won a trip for two to Costa Rica.
Gary and Mallory were the next team to arrive at the Race's third Pit Stop, securing second place. Flight Time and Big Easy then arrived in third place and were followed by Ron and Christina.
However, Ron and Christina told Phil about the incident regarding the missing fanny pack that lost them time in the Race due to Flight Time and Big Easy's confusion and decision making -- resulting in Phil announcing that Flight Time and Big Easy would be assessed a 30-minute penalty for moving their bag, allowing Ron and Christina to finish in third place instead.
Kisha and Jen then arrived in fourth place, and Flight Time and Big Easy ended up in fifth place due to their time penalty. Jet and Cord then followed in sixth place and Kent and Vyxsin secured seventh place. Margie and Luke ended up arriving at the Pit Stop in eighth place.
Jaime and Cara then found Phil and expected to hear their fate that they had been the last team to arrive and would therefore, face elimination. However, they did not know Mel and Mike took a break from the Detour task and were told they arrived in ninth place.
Mike and Mel -- who were not actually shown completing the Detour task -- were the last team to arrive at the Pit Stop and were sad to hear Phil's confirmation they had been eliminated from the Race.
"Mel and Mike, after a valiant effort today, I am sorry to tell you that you are the last team to arrive," Phil told them. "You've both been eliminated from the Race."
"After being able to run it twice, I've realized it's really about this experience that I've had with my Dad. I'm proud of him and I'm grateful for the experience," Mike told Phil.