Amazing Race
Quit Following Us

Episode Report Card
M. Giant: B- | 1 USERS: A+
Hysterical Landmarks

The sun rises on the slave statue, and on the teams waiting quietly to go inside. The door opens. Kris and Jon go first, placing their rose and taking the time to say a prayer. The other teams follow, one at a time. It's not treated like a task, or even as part of the race. It's more like an interlude. One by one, the teams walk solemnly through the house, place their roses, stand there for a respectful moment, and walk back. This is all underscored by dramatic music and intercut with shots of the slave statue, particularly the broken chain links. Gus is particularly moved; he calls a halt inside the house, and sobs openly while Hera waits, patient and quietly supportive, until he's ready to proceed. Sorry, all of my jokes about African-Americans who are emotionally overwhelmed by forceful reminders of the history of slavery are on back-order. Don and MJ are the last to leave, and he also looks deeply affected as he takes their clue envelope.

On the way to the ferry off the island, Gus tries to apologize to Hera for "embarrassing" her, but no such thought appears to have occurred to her. They're sweet. He didn't cry at his parents' funerals, he says, but he felt a rare connection to a part of himself in the Slave House, and he voices-over the hope that the others realize the "magnitude of the human experience that's incorporated in this race we run." I'm sure Rebecca in particular gave special thought to all those people who had escaped. Bye, slave statue!

Kris reads the next clue out loud. Now the teams are off to Berlin -- specifically, the remains of the Berlin Wall. Phil explains how they're going to get there -- a three-thousand-mile flight followed by a train ride -- as we see one of the few sections of the Wall that are still standing. It's now covered with murals, which I support completely. I'm sure the people of Berlin will be relieved to hear that. But, man, first the Slave House and now this? What is this, "Great Downers in History" week? Kris is happy and excited. I love Kris's relentlessly positive attitude, but typing "Kris is happy and excited" is going to get old in a hurry and I'm not going to be covering this show long enough to program a macro. So just assume that whatever I say about Kris's emotional displays from here on out, I really mean that Kris is happy and excited.

Kris and Jon, Lori and Bolo, and Jonathan and Victoria get to the dock just in time to see the ferry departing. The next one leaves at 9:30, which is plenty of time for even Don and MJ to catch up. While waiting for the ferry, Don and MJ look around themselves at the residents of Goree Island, part of one of the poorest nations in the world, and they just can't bring themselves to ask the locals for money. Yeah, I feel them there. You do that, and you're never going to be able to look Pernell Roberts in the eye again. So they start hitting up the other teams instead. To Don and MJ's credit, their competitors cough up what they can spare rather than kicking them back to the locals. Rebecca, after discussing it with El Hornio, even brings over a fiver without being asked. Jonathan, of course, instantaneously burns off all of his credit and more by condescendingly snapping a twenty at them, all "Go get yourselves something nice." After all the teams have kicked in, Don and MJ have a quiet conference: "We have more than some of the other people. Don't tell anybody how much money we have." Heh. And good for them.

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Amazing Race




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