None of these people can BELIEVE they’re going to the Arctic Circle, even though most of them are well-prepared with super cute knit headbands for the chilly temps. “Is the Artcic Circle never not freezing?” wonder-bums Nicole. Toughen up, lady! There’s a rainbow there!
A middle-of-the-night start of the leg levels the playing field: Everyone’s on the same flight (for the first time this season) to Bodo, Norway, where “the sun never sunsets,” according to Ally. We all have a lot to learn from Ally.
Upon arrival in Norway, Brandon and Adam plan to fish off the group’s ferry during a three-hour ride. (Is this Survivor? Aren’t they getting fed?) Friends since junior high, the Beards like to become one with the land wherever they may be. No one asked what the beards are for, but self-proclaimed “man scout” Adam wants to clarify: “They’re great, they’re easy, they’re low maintenance — and who doesn’t want a mustache?” Good point. Everyone does want a mustache.
Pink Hair Terror spends the ferry ride naming everyone who won’t get the Express Pass she’s guarding in the safe in her stone-cold heart, namely the Afghanimals, who are a “bunch of jerks.” (Just two of them are a bunch. Makes sense; they’re pretty much constantly ululating at this point, as if they’re summoning an entire army of camera-mugging minions. But to be fair, Leo and Jamal aren’t that annoying during this ep.)
Svolvaer, Norway — DETOUR: Hang Your Heads or Hammer of the Cods. In Hang Your Heads, teams must string together six bundles comprised of 10 fish heads each, then transport them to enormous drying racks. But Hammer of the Cods could have been called Hang Your Heads as well, because poor Nicky’s neck is about to snap off (she claims) as she waits for Kim to ascend some sort of fish-drying jungle gym/horror show as they must collect 15 neck-destroyers of cod, then make a kilo of fish jerky.
Also, it’s 11 p.m. but the sun’s still out, disorienting the contestants. Of course there’s no taxis; they’re in, like, this serene, modernistic, supremely functional fantasy Norwegian neighborhood where no one ever needs anything. The teams fret over whether to jog to the challenge or find a taxi. The Beards surge ahead on foot, and oooooh, DAMN, this looks like one of the most gorgeous runs I’ve never taken. Vikings might come running down the mountain at any time?! How cool. I don’t know how anyone sleeps up there. (Travelocity.com face masks.)
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