Amazing Race
Beacon of Hope

Episode Report Card
M. Giant: B- | 2 USERS: A
D.C. Follies
In a hurry? Read the recaplet for a nutshell description!

We get the standard season finale's ultra-long previouslies reintroducing us to the final four teams, as though this show has a huge audience that only watches the last week, which it probably doesn't. And if it did, the ultra-long previouslies are likely to put a stop to that.

"Edinburgh has been the capital city of Scotland since the fifteenth century," Phil narrates over visuals of the place, "and is divided into two distinctive areas: New Town and Old Town, a world heritage site." Of course we mostly see Old Town, and the bridge that connects the two segments, until we join Phil at the location of the previous leg's Pit Stop: the narrow alley known as Niddry Street. He also says that's the start of the eleventh leg in a race around the world, but once again the leg is not starting quite where the previous one ended. Instead, it's on some other local street next to a couple of the U.K.'s iconic red phone booths, in clear view of Edinburgh Castle, which looms on the hilltop overhead. Max & Katie, who again won the previous leg, are starting this one at 4:07 PM, when it's already dusk. Too bad they don't have time to head up to the castle and check out the haggis buffet.

Max reads from the leg's first clue that they're heading to the capital of Northern Ireland. For further clarification, Phil narrates that the teams will take a train to Stranraer, Scotland, then board a ferry (a big one, by the looks of it) that will take them across the Irish Sea to Belfast. After disembarking, they'll have to locate a warehouse where product-placed vehicles are waiting for them so they can drive themselves to Peatlands Park for their next clue. Max & Katie start searching for a cab. The weather in Edinburgh isn't so great today, so they're doing a pre-leg interview with the hoods up on their electric-blue rain jackets as Max says that after winning the last two legs, he feels like they're "the hot team heating up." He's confident about their chances to make the final three. Considering who one of the other teams is, I don't entirely blame him.

It's even darker when Bates & Anthony open their clue in second place, at 4:15 PM, but not completely dark; more like the color of the sky at 11 PM when I was there one May. In other words, there's clearly a big difference between the longest and shortest days there. They're having a little more trouble flagging down a cab in the rain than Team Newlywed did. Before starting the leg, they interview that Mona & Beth have to go, being the strongest competitors left in the race. "Including ourselves," Bates says with false modesty. I think this has more to do with alliances than strategy, as so many of this season's allegedly strategic decisions have been. Back in the race, they pause to look at a street sign and decide they might be within walking range. Which tends to get further when no cabs are stopping anyway.

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Amazing Race




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