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The Amazing Race: Season 25, 8th Leg, Malta, 11/21/14

November 26th, 2014 · No Comments

The Amazing Race Season 25 is down to six teams:  pro surfers Adam/Bethany (she has only one arm), pro wrestlers Brooke/Robbie, young male-male couple Tim and Te Jay (T/T or TNT), female scientists Amy/Maya, female bicycle racers Kym/Alli, and Jim/Misti, the married couple who are both dentists.  As the eighth leg begins they all travel together from Sicily to Malta by ferry.  (This marks a change from the usual routine of going to an airport and flying somewhere.)

When teams get off the ferry, their first task is to serve wine to a tableful of the legendary knights of Malta.  This isn’t a roadblock or detour, just an extra task.  Everyone has to carry a tray, one-handed, balancing a wine bottle and two glasses, from a bar, up 500 steps to the knights’ table.  If anyone drops and breaks their bottle or glasses, the team has to clean up, then go back, replace what they broke, and start again.  Once the two team members serve their wines, the knights hand over the next clue.  Only Kym/Alli and Brooke/Robbie make it on the 1st try.

Next clue instructs teams to make their way (by taxi) to a boathouse.  Brooke/Robbie have trouble finding a taxi and slip to last place.  It’s the middle of the night and the boathouse is closed.  Teams find six Maltese crosses marked with two different starting times for the next morning.  The front three teams grab the 7:30 start time, the other three, the 7:45 start time.

Teams don’t want to get too far away from the boathouse, even though there isn’t any comfortable or convenient place to sleep.  People sleep on benches or the concrete, complaining about rats and bugs.  (If you want to be on TAR, think about this part carefully.)

The next morning, Jim/Misti, Kym/Alli, and T/T start at 7:30.  Brooke/Robbie, Amy/Maya, and Bethany/Adam start at 7:45.   Everyone has clues for a roadblock.  Motorboats take the teams to a grotto–the Blue Grotto–along the coast of Malta.  One team member must rappel down a cliff and into the water.  (How the team members get up the cliff isn’t shown.)  Then the team member has to swim into the Blue Grotto and retrieve their next clue from a small boat hidden there.  Then they can swim back and join their teammates, who are waiting in the motorboats.

Misti, Alli, and Tim are the first racers to complete the rappel.  The second group consists of Robbie, Amy, and Bethany–who has no problem rappelling or swimming with only one arm.  I’d like to see more detail about how she handled it–maybe that’ll be in a DVD extra.

Teams finish the RB in the following order:  Kym/Alli, Misti/Jim, T/T, Bethany/Adam, Amy/Maya, and finally Brooke/Robbie (he’s a slow swimmer).  The clue hidden in the grotto directs them to go to a church.

Kym/Alli are 1st to get to the church. They find a clue box that gives a choice of detours.  However, there’s no explanation of what the options are–only their names, “Flag” or “Shine.”  Teams have to go to the locations to find out more.

Kym/Alli choose “Flag.”  This proves to be a task that would work very well as an immunity challenge on Survivor.  Phil makes a brief appearance to explain this detour is an old Maltese game.  Someone has to run up a greased pole (like a telephone pole) that slants out over the ocean, and grab a flag on the top.

Five teams try this task, and none succeed.  It appears to be a test of speed, balance, and strength.  One slight misstep or hesitation, and you fall in the water.  One teammate has to grab a yellow flag about two-thirds of the way up, which most teams manage.  The other teammate has to grab a red flag at the top, which no one does.

While Alli’s trying to get a flag, T/T and Misti/Jim see her and forget about trying to find the church first.  The run down to the waterfront, start trying to perform the task–then realize, this is a detour and they passed up the clue where they get the options for a detour.

T/T were spared elimination on the seventh leg and now need to perform a speed bump.  They find the church, and find directions for the detour and their speed bump.  They have to paint the Maltese cross on two shields.

Jim/Misti find the church and don’t want to go back to the “Flag” challenge, so they pick the “Shine” detour.  Brooke/Robbie pick the “Shine” detour, too.

For the “Shine” detour, teams have to go to a nearby courtyard and put on helmets and breastplates like what Spanish conquistadors wear in history textbooks.  The armor is rusty and dirty and teammates need to shine up each others’ armor.  It’s drudgery but, unlike the “Flag” challenge, teams can put a clock on it.

When Bethany/Adam reach the detour, they turn in the express pass they won on the second leg.  That makes them the first team to get this leg’s pit stop clue.  They’re first to reach the pit stop, Ft. Manuel, built in the 18th century.  They win the leg and $10,000 each.  The greeter at the mat shows them a Maltese hunting falcon.

T/T finish painting their shields and head back to the “Flag” detour.  Amy/Maya arrive and try the “Flag” detour, but Amy can’t sprint up the pole.  She injured her leg in a workout just before she went on TAR.  The sweet scientists switch detours.

Brooke complains so much about polishing the armor, she and Robbie switch tasks.  She gets the yellow flag but he tries and tries and can’t get the red one.  They switch back.  “We gave it a try.  We wasted about 30 minutes,” Robbie says.

T/T don’t want to switch because they realize they must be in last place by now.  Te Jay got the yellow flag.  Tim’s trying and trying to get the red one but can’t.

Jim/Misti finish polishing their armor, and get their work approved.  They reach the pit stop in 2nd place. Kym/Alli finish the armor.  They place 3rd.  Amy/Maya finish the armor and place 4th.

Two teams are left on course.  Tim gets to the point where he just can’t run up the pole anymore–he’s shaking.  The gay couple give up on the “Flag” detour and switch to “Shine.”  When T/T arrive at the other location, Brooke/Robbie are finishing shining the armor they half-finished before.  The one thing left that may affect the outcome appears to be if Brooke/Robbie have bad taxi luck.

Brooke/Robbie finish their armor and get it approved.  They find a taxi is waiting for T/T.  They try and talk the driver into taking them instead but he refuses.  There’s a bar nearby, and they ask the bartender to call a cab.  One arrives before T/T are finished.

The show tries to create some suspense, but Brooke/Robbie arrive at the pit stop in 5th place.  T/T are 6th and this time there’s no reprieve.  They’re eliminated.

On the next leg, a double U-turn is coming up.  Several teams have agreed to U-turn Kym/Alli if they get a chance.  Then again we saw what happened in Season 24 when several teams agreed to U-turn Brenchel.




Tags: Amazing Race