Amazing Race

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M. Giant: B | Grade It Now!
…And the Horse That Rode in on You
In a hurry? Read the recaplet for a nutshell description!

This recap, like the episode, is preceded by a shout-out to Chile. Although I think you can probably find other resources for helping out beyond just the CBS website.

And then we're in Chile itself, namely Puerto Varas. Phil talks about the "pristine lakes and snow-capped volcanoes," calling it "a picturesque town of monuments and parks like Gruta de la Virgen." Which was also the second Pit Stop, by a remarkable coincidence. Jet and Cord, who arrived first, are leaving at 11:20 PM. Which is not to say they arrived at 11:20 AM. Their clue begins, "Find the Gnome in the Wall Gang." Getting back to that non sequitur in a moment, it looks like they're facing another cross-country bus ride. But it doesn't sound as bad as the ride here from Santiago; this time it's "only" six hours, and they'll be traveling through the scenic Andes mountains. After they cross into Argentina, they'll have to drive to a place called "El Boliche Viejo," which sounds a lot more exotic than its English translation, "The Old Joint." It also happens to be where Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid hid out when they were in that country, and we even get to see a photo of the five members of the actual Hole in the Wall Gang (not the Gnome in the Wall Gang), with the leaders highlighted. They don't really look that much like Newman and Redford in this context. In keeping with this saloon's august history, Travelocity gnomes are now seated at tables with card dealers, with flat-brimmed hats impaled over their pointy red ones. So yes, it's this season's designated gnome-toting leg, but this time, the racers will also have to beat the gnomes at a hand of five card stud. So at least the gnomes are taking a more active role now. As Jet and Cord leave the Pit Stop, they talk about how their bus leaves at 8:30 AM. Cord interviews about Jet's intelligence, again saying, "Don't let the cowboy hat fool you." And again, I'm not, but you're going to have a hard time convincing me that the clear plastic condom stretched over said hat during that interview is not as dumb as it looks. When they look at the old photograph included in the clue, they recognize it on sight, having seen the movie anywhere from 20 to 100 times (I hear that on the 101st viewing, they get away in the end). They don't so much recognize the gnome that's been Photoshopped in, however. "The thing is we don't have to run like scalded dogs," Jet says.

Joe and Heidi are leaving the Pit Stop at 11:55. They also learn that only the first three teams will make it onto that first bus at 8:30. Carol and Brandy, who arrived at the mat at the same time, are leaving in third place, also at 11:55. They interview how their relationship is only five months in, so they're still learning things about each other. And bickering about what Carol calls "the stupidest stuff." Then we see them bickering about which way is north, which in the context of the race is not such a minor issue.

Jet and Cord walk into a low-ceilinged tavern to do a little research. They're lucky enough to find a young woman who not only speaks English, not only lived in Argentina for years, but has actually been to El Boliche Viejo. They take notes and take off.

At 1:20 AM, Brent and Caite are supposed to be leaving, but they're still in their room at the Hotel Cumbres. And instead of our introduction to Caite this week being her and Brent opening their clue and taking off from the Pit Stop, it's Brent listening outside the bathroom door while she shouts groceries. In other words, the racer who first became famous for verbally vomiting on national television is now doing it literally. Apparently she woke up sick, and Brent suspects it's food poisoning, especially now that he's having similar symptoms. They get up, get dressed, and decide to go to the hospital. "We should be leaving now, but now we're just gonna try and get better," Brent says. In the taxi to the hospital, Brent blames it on dehydration, and she hopes it doesn't pull them out of the race. After all, how many different kinds of painful elimination can one person endure in one day?

Monique and Shawne, who have become the new fourth-place team by default, open their clue at 1:22 AM and learn they have 48 dollars for this leg. They talk about being here to set an example for their kids. So that means they'll give back the money if they win, right?

Brent and Caite arrive at the "Ingreso Urgencia" ("emergency room," according to the subtitles, even if "ingreso" looks more like a word for "entrance") at 1:30, which the subtitle helpfully informs us is "10 Minutes after Scheduled Departure." The hospital must be mighty close to the hotel, then. Brent's two thoughts that he shares with Caite are "Let's get you well" and "We could be out of it right now." But don't let worrying about that second thing interfere with the first.

Jordan and Jeff are leaving in fifth place at 2:01 AM. "Let's dance," Jeff says. I do like how this show makes them just another team. The temptation to Romberize them must have been powerful. But then, it's still early.

It's 2:20 at the emergency room, or "1 hour after scheduled departure." at least according to the increasingly unreliable timestamp that's following them around. Caite is already lying on a gurney getting an IV in her arm. She says they might be in the worst situation possible. And the hospital lights are making her look pale, too.

Steve and Allie are leaving in sixth place, at 2:23 AM. Then Dan and Jordan take off at 2:25 AM, in seventh place. He-Jordan pronounces their destination country as "Are-yentina!" Louie and Michael leave at 3:12 AM in eighth place, and apparently Louie is a poker player. He should be able to beat a hunk of plaster, then. We learn from them that the second bus leaves at 8:50, 20 minutes after the first one, and they decide to hit the hotel for some free internet.

Caite emerges from the emergency room at what the timestamp would have us believe is 4:20 AM, three hours after they were supposed to be leaving the Pit Stop. She says she still feels weak. "We were delayed trying to get back to the race," Brent understates. Caite says they worried about being able to catch up. But just wait until you see how the next five minutes goes for them.

At the hotel, Louie and Michael are getting some help from the desk clerk looking up El Boliche Viejo on Google Maps when the models return. "The dads are right there," Caite says as they get out of their cab, displaying a not unsurprising ignorance of what the other team's gimmick is. Obviously the "dads" are surprised to see them slouch back into the lobby, and seem genuinely concerned about them. But that concern proves misplaced, as Brent and Caite go back up to their room, get their stuff out of it, and get back to the Pit Stop mat in time to open their clue at 4:25 -- five minutes after leaving the hospital. If they can maintain that pace, they're on track to reach the Pit Stop before the first commercial break.

The sun rises over the Del Salvador Bus Terminal the next morning. Carol and Brandy enter to find Jet and Cord already there, and immediately start grilling them about how they got ahead of everyone else in the last leg. The Cowboys just stand there, not even getting a chance to answer any of the questions being fired at them at a machine-gun pace, and not necessarily inclined to answer any of them if they did. "They've got tricks up their sleeves, and their tricks have tricks up their sleeves!" Brandy interviews, which is a pretty generous observation from someone who two legs ago was right behind them when they tried to buy a Chilean bus ticket with Brazilian money.

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Amazing Race




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