Monday, September 21, 2015

TAR 27 Recap BONUS, 9-21-15

Welcome to Leg . . . well, now, we don’t have The Amazing Race to enjoy right now, do we? So, we (Toyouke, me, and the rest of us) were realizing that we hadn’t spent any time recently ranking anything in the history of The Amazing Race, and figured it might be about that time again. And as we were deciding on a topic, we realized that we had enough seasons, so why not rank the best seasons ever? As a result, here are our picks for the 11 most memorable TAR Seasons EVER. (click for more)

Now, I’m going to use a little ranking system. Putting together this list was difficult, but not impossible when thinking about how a season is laid out. When considering these however, it comes down to SIX criteria: the AGE of the season, the number of ALL-STAR teams involved, the number of RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, the number of CONTINENTS AND COUNTRIES visited, the number of RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, and the number of DEFINING MOMENTS. Most of these criteria were met simply through counting up teams, countries and tasks, but even some of those numbers were subjective, depending on the number of times we went “Oh, I totally remember that!” which means your numbers could have been different than our numbers. So, without further ado, here’s what we came up with.HONORABLE MENTION) The Amazing Race Season 10: Just before we got our very first season of TAR All Stars, we get season 10 in the fall of 2006. It’s notable for having the introduction of the Intersection (which lasted a total of two seasons) and the first double elimination inside a leg. It also was the season where the non-elimination penalty changed from Robber Barron Phil taking all your possessions away to the ridiculous “Marked for Elimination” time penalty. When Toyouke and I were going through this season, we realized we somehow remembered it for being after season 9, but all of season 9 and 10 blended, so when it was all said and done, the two seasons separately weren’t as memorable as we thought they were. Memorability factor: AGE, 9 years; ALL-STARS, 2 (Dustin & Kandice, David & Mary); RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 8; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 17 (4 + 13); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 10; DEFINING MOMENTS, 2; TOTAL SCORE, 48.

11) The Amazing Race Season 15: Season 15 introduced us to Flight Time and Big Easy, the Harlem Globetrotters, leading to the procurement of “Sweet Georgia Brown” for airing purposes, and the first of three seasons in which we got to deal with these goofballs. We also were subjected to the first elimination at the starting line, as well as the very first Switchback, the ever popular Swedish Roulette, involving unrolling hay bales with clues. You may also recall the waterslide in UAE in which Mika of Mika and Canaan would under no circumstance go down, leading to their elimination. Memorability factor: AGE, 6 years; ALL-STARS, 2 (Flight Time & Big Easy, Zev & Justin); RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 5; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 12 (3 + 9); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 18; DEFINING MOMENTS, 6; TOTAL SCORE, 49.

10) The Amazing Race Season 25: The youngest of the seasons on this list makes the cut mostly because it is so recent. It also featured the first time we had a final four in the last leg of the race, which led to the victory of Amy and Maya. It was also the introduction and demise of The Save pass, which would have allowed a team to save themselves from elimination; however, the only time that Misti and Jim could have used it was a non-elimination leg. PTHBBT. Also, I remember this because I was in New York City the night they left for the race, sleeping in a hotel 13 blocks away. Not that I’m bitter or anything. Memorability factor: AGE, 1 year; ALL-STARS, 0; RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 8; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 13 (4 + 9); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 22; DEFINING MOMENTS, 8; TOTAL SCORE, 52.

9) The Amazing Race Season 14: So the fact that there are five All-Star teams alone should make this season memorable in itself. But then, of course, the introduction of the Blind U-Turn and the first season in which no team ever took a Fast Forward adds to that memorability. Then there were cheese sleds and an underwear run with hot boys and where were we again? This was also a very LGBT friendly race with at least four people on the spectrum in some way. Oh, and this was the season with the self proclaimed MOST MEMORABLE PIT STOP EVER, but that’s addressed in acompletely different article. Memorability factor: AGE, 6 years; ALL-STARS, 5 (Jaime and Cara, Margie and Luke, Kisha and Jen, Mel and Mike, Amanda and Kris); RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 5; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 12 (3 + 9); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 20; DEFINING MOMENTS, 5; TOTAL SCORE, 53.

8) The Amazing Race Season 11: The first All-Star season return many of our favorite teams from the first 10 seasons to our television screen, and they wouldn’t be on an All-Stars season if all the teams weren’t memorable in the first place. But in other memorability factors, this is the last season to feature both the Yield and the Intersection. It’s also slightly annoying in that it was won by the first team that was never a team in its original season: Eric and Danielle, who met on the race, but ultimately on different teams. Sure, we got to see Danny and Oswald fangirl again, and the Guidos be “villainous” and Romber taking an early exit, but what else is there? Oh, Charla in a suit of armor. That was fun. Memorability factor: AGE, 9 years; ALL-STARS, 0; RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 11; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 15 (6 + 9); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 19; DEFINING MOMENTS, 3; TOTAL SCORE, 57.

7) The Amazing Race Season 22: Goodness, where to start with this season? Dave and Connor, obviously, because how many other teams would get injured and then compete for two more legs without being eliminated? John, being an asshat for not using the Express Pass to stay in the race and instead gets eliminated holding it. And then there was that communist propaganda song in Vietnam. And of course, the Spy Games switchback from TAR 8. But I think the real reason for the high ranking here is if I mentioned any of the teams, including the All-Stars, I could immediately tell you something about their performance, and for a late season like this, that’s impressive. Memorability factor: AGE, 2 years; ALL-STARS, 4 (Caroline & Jennifer, Joey & Meghan, Dave & Connor, Jessica & John); RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 10; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 14 (5 + 9); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 22; DEFINING MOMENTS, 6; TOTAL SCORE, 58.

6) The Amazing Race Season 18: The second All-Star season, dubbed “Unfinished Business” was really a chance for our favorite teams from past seasons to run the race again and as a result, we recognized all of them. It produced the second all-female team to win the race (Kisha & Jen), and was the first season when there were legs with potentially no rest period between them. But it’s really the memorability of the teams that put them this high up, and the fact that a number of these teams still got on ANOTHER All-Star season later on in the series run. Memorability factor: AGE, 4 years; ALL-STARS, 3.5 (Flight Time & Big Easy, Jet & Cord, Margie & Luke, Mallory); RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 11; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 14 (5 + 9); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 23; DEFINING MOMENTS, 3; TOTAL SCORE, 58.5.

5) The Amazing Race Season 4: Ah, the early seasons. TAR 4 brought us Kelly and Jon, who would pretty much get naked for any task, Reichen and Chip, the first “Married” gay couple on reality TV, and Chillie, the 12 year virgins. This was the last race to allow ties at the mat, after a three way first place finish on the first leg. Some fantastic tasks, nut bunches, the over abundance of Fast Forwards, and the energy of all the teams made for one exciting episode after another. Memorability factor: AGE, 12 years; ALL-STARS, 0 ; RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 8; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 13 (4 + 9); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 25; DEFINING MOMENTS, 4; TOTAL SCORE, 62.

4) The Amazing Race Season 6: A lot of firsts this season. This was the first season of equitable distribution of Roadblocks, the first double leg, and the first task to become a Switchback: Swedish Roulette. But there were also crazy teams, like Gus and Hera and the beer coasters, Jonathan and Victoria and the Brandenburg Gate fiasco, and Adam (Hornboy) and Rebecca breaking down every leg. A true cast of characters with some great spontaneous moments led to a truly memorable race. Memorability factor: AGE, 11 years; ALL-STARS, 0 ; RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 8; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 15 (4 + 11); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 27; DEFINING MOMENTS, 6; TOTAL SCORE, 67.

3) The Amazing Race Season 5: One word defines this season: Colin. Sure, there’s Charla carrying a giant slab of meat on her back for her unruly cousin, Kami and Karli swimming across a pool for no reason, Marshall and Lance quitting because it was too hard, and Jim getting injured but not wanting to disappoint his daughter. But Colin was the star. From his ox being broken, to him packing it in cement molds to almost getting arrested by Tanzanian police, this one was for the record books. And who couldn’t get excited for Chip and Kim for the win? This season also introduced the Yield and Non-Elimination penalties. But really? Colin. Memorability factor: AGE, 11 years; ALL-STARS, 1 (Charla & Mirna); RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 8; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 18 (6 + 12); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 27; DEFINING MOMENTS, 5; TOTAL SCORE, 70.

2) The Amazing Race Season 3: This season ties with TAR 5 in points, but gets the #2 slot for being older. So many wonderful things happened this season. Ian, the original Asshat, berating his wife Teri, even while she performs a caber toss in Scotland. Flo, Floing all over the place, made everyone love her teammate Zack that much more. The twins Derek and Drew. Yum. Heave, and the “Walk to the Pit Stop” clue. Dieselgate and the calamity it caused for so many teams. And of course, the first Final Challenge clue in race history. So many great moments created a season that can still be remembered to this day without rewatching a single episode. Memorability factor: AGE, 13 years; ALL-STARS, 2 (Teri & Ian, John Vito & Jill); RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 10; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 17 (4 + 13); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 20; DEFINING MOMENTS, 8; TOTAL SCORE, 70.

And the most memorable season ever?

1) The Amazing Race Season 7: I wasn’t sure how a season could beat TAR 3, but this one takes it. Memorable teams like Uchenna and Joyce, who shaved her head for the cause. Rob and Amber, using Survivor techniques to get multiple teams to quit the meat eating Roadblock. FREE RON! And Meredith and Gretchen, the most memorable and adorable old couple ever. But the big kicker was the final leg, when an airplane appeared to be pulled back to the gate to pick up Uchenna and Joyce and lead to them winning the entire race. Now that makes for a memorable season. Memorability factor: AGE, 10 years; ALL-STARS, 2 (Uchenna & Joyce, Rob & Amber); RECOGNIZABLE TEAMS, 9; CONTINENTS & COUNTRIES, 15 (5 + 10); RECOGNIZABLE TASKS, 28; DEFINING MOMENTS, 7; TOTAL SCORE, 71.

And that’s our list! What would you add or delete? Let us know! We’re excited about Season 27, premiering September 25 at 7 pm CDT! We’ll see you next time on the Amazing Race!

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