Amazing Race

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M. Giant: B- | Grade It Now!
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Norway

Chad and Stephanie are climbing ashore, he rushing her along because the volleyball team seems to be closing in behind them. "We're too far behind in the pack to be walking," he says. They get their clue from the lodge keeper and head back. They meet Katie and Rachel in their boat back, which does not bode at all well for Katie and Rachel. Soon both teams are on their respective sides of the fjord, and as he drives to the Pit Stop, Chad says, "The green team is hopefully going down." I'd ding him for his incorrect use of "hopefully," but even though it's not what he means, it's not technically incorrect. Katie and Rachel do remain hopeful.

Nick and Vicki run to the Pit Stop, Nick saying, "I think we're in second, dude." I'd like to think he's kidding, but they haven't really earned the benefit of the doubt with me. Or indeed the aforementioned doubt. Still, they seem pretty happy to learn that they're team number six, meaning that their idiotic small-d detour to the Fast Forward cost them exactly nothing. They're going to end up being one of those teams that seem to be circling the drain for the whole season and then end up in the final three, aren't they? I hate those teams.

Just two teams left. Katie and Rachel finish the hike to the lodge and get their clue, then learn there's nothing left but the Pit Stop. Their optimistic veneer is starting to wear a little thin. They hurry to catch Chad and Stephanie, who have stopped someone on the road for directions. Luckily for the Amazing Editors who want to amp up the suspense, the local is not a fast talker. It's like getting directions from Rowan Atkinson in Love, Actually.Both teams are pretty wound up, and Rachel says, "I might be sick on the mat because I don't want to lose." Chad and Stephanie spot the marina from a distance, and so have Katie and Rachel, but Chad can't visualize how to actually get to it. So which team will arrive next? It's ...Chad and Stephanie, barely still in it as team number seven. Chad interviews, against all evidence, that they're one of the strongest teams. "Now it's time to turn it up a notch." Stephanie adds that they know how quickly things can change. "We can go from last to first." Well, the opposite seems to happen a lot more often.

Katie and Rachel run to the mat, chanting, "Please, God, please God, please God." The greeter welcomes them to Narvik, Norway, and Phil Philiminates them. Thanks for nothing, God. They really didn't do anything wrong this leg; they lost it on that sledding hill back in Sweden. Maybe if some of this leg's tasks were more challenging in different ways to different people, there would have been more shuffling of the ranks than just a swap between third and fifth place, but that's all water under the Skjombrua now. Rachel interviews that Katie was the best partner, and starts to well up. Katie agrees that it was a great experience and she's happy they did it together. Well, they're in first place when it comes to clich├ęs, at least. "I wanted to race forever," Rachel says wistfully. Okay, that's a little poignant.

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Amazing Race

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