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The Amazing Race recap: How Do You Spell Failure?

A word jumble derails one team while Dan and Sam continue their bickering ways

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Amazing Race Dan Sam
Monty Brinton/CBS

The Amazing Race

TV Show
Reality TV
run date:
Phil Keoghan
Jerry Bruckheimer
Current Status:
In Season

Gregor Samsa, as many of you recall, is the protagonist in Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis. He’s a traveling salesman who just wants to provide for his family, until he turns into an insect and everything falls apart. Big Easy had something in common with Gregor Samsa in last night’s kind of awesome episode: He too just wanted to provide for himself and Flight Time. But instead of turning into an insect, he turned into the BIGGEST MORON ON THE PLANET. Seriously, dude? A four-hour penalty because you can’t figure out that 5 letters spell a word? I need a moment to let the rage settle. Let’s focus on something else.

Okay. Phil started the episode by giving a voice-over about how teams had to make it to Prague’s oldest synagogue, and then further explained, ”a Jewish house of prayer.” Thanks for the explanation, Phil. When I saw Brian and Ericka’s picture next to the Speed Bump sign, I was a little nervous about what they were going to have to do. Go into the synagogue and pray? Eat some schmaltz with Manischewitz Extra Heavy Malaga? (I’m Jewish! I can mock my people’s food!) Alas, team by team found the synagogue and got their clue and moved on. Brian and Ericka got there and found out they had to go to the M1 Bar and make absinthe. Phil described absinthe as a drink ”known for its high alcohol content.” Um, way to sugarcoat it, Keoghan. That’s like saying the death penalty is known for being a way to get one last great meal of your choosing. Actually, absinthe was illegal in the U.S. and most of Europe for much of the 20th century and plenty of people still believe it has addictive qualities that make you crazy, psycho, and completely bonkers. Enjoy your speed bump, Brian and Ericka, if you survive! Alas, I’m guessing what they drank was Amstel Light of absinthe since Brian and Ericka managed to get it down pretty quickly and move on. Incidentally, I’m still scarred from seeing that M1 bar with all the Czech women dancing around in bikini tops like they were trying to open a Prague branch of Hogs and Heffers. All I could imagine was an Amazing Race producer going up to pretty women and telling them that if they’d all-but-strip and gyrate on a bar counter they could become famous on American TV. Ericka made some comment to Brian about how he could get in trouble there from looking at all those women, but her tone didn’t really bother me for once. It was a cute and playful and of course, she needn’t worry about Brian. That guy is head over heels in love with his former pageant queen. Oddly enough, I’m starting to understand what he sees in her. Hell, I downright loved Ericka this episode. But we’ll get back to that.

NEXT: Five letters, sounds like…