The Amazing Race “Back in Business; Moment of Truth” Review (Season 26 Episode 7-8)

The Amazing Race Back In Business Moment of Truth Season 26 Episode 7-8 01

Look, I like The Amazing Race. I chose to review it, after all. However, two episodes of The Amazing Race in one night is just too much. I don’t know if I was just in a bad mood or something, but I was not overly excited to find out that I had two whole hours to get through this evening.

Unfortunately, “Back in Business” was not a good start to the double feature, as the teams made their way from Monaco to Namibia. Just about every part of this episode was getting me irritated. It starts off with yet another half-hearted date night scene. We had a tiny little glimpse at Laura and Tyler’s date night, which is getting a little tiresome as it goes on. It bothers me that the date nights are randomly won, as opposed to won by the team that came in first, which makes a lot more sense. It’s also bothering me that we just see them enjoying this date night for about 20 seconds, instead of actually letting us know what they’re doing for their date. It’s clearly a half hearted idea that I wish got a little better fleshed out.

The teams were all equalized at the airport, and were all on the same flight to Namibia. The only kinda/sorta unequalizer here was the bush planes that all departed shortly after each other, but it appears that everybody made it to the Road Block at around the same time.

The Road Block was pretty cool, as it gave a nice dose of local flavor and allowed the team members to help the bushmen build some huts. I don’t think there was any real skill involved, because you just had to do what the bushman told you to do. It isn’t like the usual Amazing Race challenge of “Look at this example, and build this thing that looks like it”, which inevitably ends in a team missing a couple details and getting all upset asking “What did I do wrong?!” This was a lot easier, as they had no chance to actually get it wrong. They were basically just helping some guys put together their huts.

The Detour was a choice between Pack or Track, which was the standard Amazing Race choice between hard work and luck. Cutting meat off a wildebeest and throwing it at some dogs wasn’t exactly difficult, but it could have taken a while if you’re bad at carving meat. The Track one could have been really tough, but it also could have been really easy. It must have been controlled somehow by the rangers, like maybe they didn’t allow the elephants to leave a certain area somehow. It would have been pretty lame if the elephants had migrated right in front of the ranger headquarters, and the teams drove a couple hundred feet from the start and found one. On the other hand, it would have been pretty lame if they searched for miles for an elephant and never found one.

The Detour was by far the most frustrating part of the episode for me. This was yet another instance when one side of the Detour was limited in how many teams could do them at once, which I feel like has never happened on this show before. In the past, if you came to the Detour you could pick whichever one you wanted. Now you have to be one of the first teams to show up or you could get saddled with a terrible Detour, like the Track side. This one was clearly way harder than just cutting up some meat and throwing it at dogs, but a couple teams were blocked from it. However, Mike and Rochelle were able to come in last place and they were allowed to do Pack! How is that fair?!

The Olympians were the last to arrive, but more than likely because they had the flat tire and not because they were forced into a crappy Detour. Still, that was super lame. Thankfully they had the reprieve of a non-elimination leg, which is only fair considering they got totally screwed.

This brought us into the second episode of the evening, “Moment of Truth”, as the teams stay in Namibia for another leg. After staying in a sketchy tent in the middle of the desert, the teams made their way to a cute little town. I was thinking they were going to be back in civilization that leg, but then they quickly drove out to the middle of nowhere for the Road Block.

It cracked me up how openly disappointed multiple people were with the Road Block. Hayley, Matt, and a few others kept talking about how lame it was that all they were doing was watching some guy throw a box out of a plane. If you’re going to bring racers to a skydiving company, you can’t have such a bait and switch.

Speaking of disappointment, what happened to Steve and Aly? These two have been one of the strongest teams thus far, but tonight they were like a totally different duo. Not only had Steve become a bumbling loser who gets flat tires and totally loses his dropped box, but Aly also became a huge nag.

It was also a bit of a disappointment how the episode was edited, because it really never felt like Steve and Aly were going to make up the lost time. The end of the last leg was much more suspenseful, because you never knew who was going to clamber up that rock and check in to the pit stop first. This one was decided about half way through.

So a bit of a bummer tonight. Two full hours of Amazing Race, and both of them were a bit of a disappointment. What did you guys think?

Random Thoughts:

– I love that even indigenous Namibian bush people know how to pose for a selfie.

– I’m not sure how people go onto The Amazing Race and not learn how to drive stick. It’s not that hard, you guys.

– The foreman Travelocity gnome was so cute!