The Amazing Race, Ep. 23.9: “Part Like the Red Sea” And pray to God the editors like you

TAR S23E09 promo pic 2

The Amazing Race, Season 23, Episode 9: “Part Like the Red Sea”
Aired Sundays at 8pm (ET) on CBS

Abu Dhabi is the start of 9th leg, but soon everyone must fly from the land where political correctness has been king, to Bandung, Indonesia, where racers can ask “Are the people there Chinese or Indian?” and it can make it to air. On the way to the airport, Mr. and Mrs. Dr. surprise no one by ramping their self-righteous attitudes up a notch from last episode, saying they aim to be beacon for God’s light in the race, unlike those filthy, lying Afghanimals. The Afghanimals counter in their car by saying things like “all gloves are off,” and “no more playing nice,” and “we didn’t come here to make friends,” (OK, thank God not that last one). Meanwhile, Marie is sick of feeling bad for ordering Tim around so much, so has now decided to order him around even more. Never change, Marie.

Indonesia! Rams await! After long, traffic-y car rides, all teams make it to the animals, which they are supposed to take to a special cheering circle and wait for to butt heads. We miss the next scene where the locals make the rams fight to the death and eat their entrails. But no, it’s actually cute. And as Mr. Dr. tells, us, 100% safe! (I enjoy how they make the doctor say that line).

Mr. and Mrs. Dr. and the Ice Girls make it out first, and the Ice Girls remark that this is the first time they are actually not in the back half, and able to race with the big dogs. They make the first train back to town, along with… of course, the Afghanimals! Cut to them saying evil lies once again, with Leo screaming his go-to line of “My wife is pregnant!” to get the train to depart. Mr. and Mrs. Dr. shake their heads, yet happily accept the train ride, leaving Jason and Amy behind to go head to head with their enemies, Tim and Marie, on the second train—one hour behind.

Detour: For the Elephants or For the Birds. Basically, transporting food from a market to a zoo with a cab and hand trolleys, or picking up lovebirds, delivering them to a Grand Prix, and making them squawk. Ice queens aren’t sure which one to do as Ashley’s afraid the food delivery might be heavy. And yes, it took me this episode to finally say something about an individual Ice Girl. Ally pushes for elephants, however, and that’s what they do… in a manner of speaking. The proceeding ten minutes are a comedy of errors for them, wherein they head to the zoo first by accident, finally make it to the market, but then can’t put all the food in their car. They have such a horrible time that the two teams from the late train zip past them at the zoo. It’s sad; and leads to the first fight between the girls, making them a little human for once, but also dead meat, as everyone else finishes before they do.

Roadblock: Who has an inkling for anklung? One member of each team must assemble an Indonesian instrument that then plays a proper octave. Mr. and Mrs. Dr. get there first, as usual, but what’s not usual is the absolute confusion that ensues for Mrs. Dr., who is not as musical as her oh-so-perfect husband. The Afghanimals get crazy happy in the arena with the kids, however, and it’s a battle between the two teams once again: gleeful devilishness vs. hard-working godliness. Soon enough, the devil wins as Leo gets his first while Mrs. Dr. continues to flounder.

It’s then that Jamal resorts to double negatives, screaming at his partner to destroy his instrument, and to not let no one see. This all perfectly culminates in giving Mrs. Dr. the idea to run over and do exactly that. She goes to the judging area and chases around Leo, who hides his instrument with his body until finally taking it apart. It’s hilariously childish, especially with the editors showing the Doctors’ hypocrisy, cutting to an interview saying they want to set a good example for their kids. Mr. Dr. is ultimately not amused and says he’s embarrassed. But it seems it’s not really over his wife’s behavior, but more over her incompetence at the challenge, adding another layer of bad gamesmanship to this “perfect” couple.

In the end, Amy helps Mrs. Dr. with her instrument just as the Ice Girls arrive so that their friends don’t lose, and all teams eventually make it to Bosscha Observatory, the next Pit Stop. The Afghanimals win $7500 each. Their race wives are ejected from the competition. The girls say that they are happy that they’ve now been to 7 countries, and that they will be lifelong friends with Afghanimals. They then do a jinx, back to being one entity like it was always meant to be.



By Michael

Michael Narkunski should have had an NYC accent, but watched too much Brady Bunch growing up, so sounds like he's from California. His very favorite TV shows often have titles taken from their main female characters: Buffy, Roseanne, Felicity, Xena, Daria. He will create one of his own once he finds a name not too weird and not too common (most likely Ursula). Also, Michael remains an undying fan of Todd Solondz, Mike Leigh, Stanley Kubrick, Charlie Kaufman and anyone else who spun their Jewish straw into a uniquely tortured gold.

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