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The Amazing Race – Season 14 – Episode 1 – Don’t Let The Cheese Hit Me

The first episode of Season 14 of  The Amazing Race started in LA on an army base with the contestants flying in on the choppers to meet host Phil Keoghan and to start the the race. I am presuming the production company paid for the privilege otherwise it was a definite waste of tax payers money.

The teams were the usual mixture of blonde plastic women (the air hostesses), dating couples, cheerleaders, hillbillies and the bright college couple. A few from the norm was a Margie and Luke, mother and son where the son is deaf, and a father and son, Mike and Mel who are both gay.  Mike was also a script writer as he has written School of Rock, and Nacho Libre.

“I think some people will think my dad is Cloris Leechman but he really is McGyver.” Mike said.

The teams had to fly from LA to Locarno Switzland. They had the choice of two flights, one flying to Zurich and the other to Milan. They then had to get a train to get to their destination.

Jennifer  who was racing with her boyfriend Preston  said she had never been to a train station? Huh? Where was she from? This pair looked like they could be another version of the infamous Amazing Race couple Johnathan and Victoria.

When they were being introduced Preston said he knew he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her, but it was not long into the episode where they had their first fight and he said “You need to control your mouth”.

The blonde air hostesses, Christie and Jodie  got some help and swapped to a faster train to get to Locarno first.  Their prize was a 7.15am start time in the morning. By the way the best flight to be on was the Lufthansa flight to Zurich. 

The groups were split into three starting times in the morning 7.15am, 7.30am, and 7.45.

Gee I know that Switzerland is expensive but really getting them to camp out was a bit rough. At the campsite the hillbillies, Steve and Linda, were fighting because she is so unfit and cannot run. She wins the prize of first tears of the race.

The next day started with a roadblock  which was second highest bungee jump in the world Verzasca Dam. It looked incredibly scary jumping between at that height two crevices.

Christie and Jodie the flight attendants were not happy with the challenge, however the one that did it did not baulk and hold the others up. The stunt guy (Mark or Michael) made it look easy.

The next clue told the teams to go to Interlaken and go to Kleine Rugen Wiese to find their next clue.

The choice was to go through Italy or Lucerne. Going through Italy way was quicker. Something fitness freaks married couple Brad and Victoria decided not to tell the blonde flight attendants. This was costly to them and the blondes were the last to arrive at the next challenge.

Once they got there it was not the usual detour but a challenge all teams must complete. And I know why, they wanted to milk the maximum entertainment value out of it. To be honest this is one of the reasons I watch the show. The teams had to transport 200 pounds of cheese to receive their next clue.  They were able to use contraptions which were attached to their backs. Two hundred pounds was four wheels of cheese.

It was hilarious the hill was steep and damp, the contraptions broke and cheese was starting to go everywhere.  The old guy Mel went down on his butt, but then quite a few copied his modus operandi, including Margie and Luke the deaf guy.

If you missed it here is a exerpt from YouTube.

The hillbillies could barely get up the hill and you thought they were gone but the husband worked out to use the contraption as a sled, and put three of their wheels on it. Something that crossed my mind when I first saw the challenge.

They ended up losing time looking for the pitstop.

After that task it was a race to the pit stop in Stechlberg where they must listen for a group of yodlers to lead them to the mat. Ironic considering one of the contestants was deaf. And Phil Keoghan showed he is such a nice guy that he had learnt sign language to Margie and Luke who were team number one.  Also it appeared Phil’s other new talent this season is the one eyebrow raise. Victor and Tammy, the sibling lawyers were second and Mark and Michael the stunt guys were third.

Fighting it out for last place were Christie and Jodi( the hosties ) and Jennifer and Preston.  When the Christie and Jodi arrived on the mat  one of them closed their with eyes as if to say “Please God let us not be last to arrive”, when standing behind them were Preston and Jennifer who were eliminated. I was disappointed about Jennifer and Preston arriving last, as they looked like they would have given great reality TV with the combination of low IQ and constant bickering.

Here is an interview with Jennifer and Preston on Reality Wanted where they reveal they actually got to the pitstop ahead of Christie and Jodie but because they did not have enough money for the taxi they were given a 30 minute time penalty.

Weird The Amazing Race Fact: Most of the episodes are named after quotes people have said in the episode.


1 Philsgirlfriend { 07.24.09 at 12:35 am }

I love love love the amazing race. By far the best show on teeve. I just read that this is the 14th season? Has it really been around that long?? Wow times flys when you are having fun. I have decided that moving to Switzerland and carting cheese for a living is definately something I should be looking into. The Mother and Son combo are so far my favourites, but I’m sure I will flip and flop throughout the entire season.
Thankyou RR for opening up The Amazing Race for commentary

2 par3182 { 07.24.09 at 2:18 am }

that’s not a new talent – phil’s been doing the eyebrow pop since season one

3 Wurstsemmel { 07.24.09 at 8:07 am }

Just love this show. There’s something delightedly wicked about watching the way some Americans interact with world. Like those hosties urging their Italian taxi drivers on in Spanish. Duh. The cheese wheel task was hilarious. I thought the Hillbillies were a goner because of her fitness – can’t believe she would pass the medical for such a demanding show – but kudos to the husband for thinking outside of the square and using the cheese carrier as a sled to carry the cheese. Chosen team currently are the two lawyers who came in second but at this stage of the game that can easily change. Got to love Phil and his old eyebrow trick. Looking forward to next week when teams seem to confuse Austria with Australia. Could be some detour!

4 seepi { 07.24.09 at 11:42 am }

Great show. They seem to have stepped it up a level this series. I was a bit concerned a few would go out with injuries coming down cheese mountain.

I am sad that Jennifer and Preston have gone too – is that bad :)

5 Culinary Boner { 07.24.09 at 1:28 pm }

I wonder if Phil has employed the one eye brow raise to crack a move on any women. Doubtful it’d be sucessful though.

6 Injera { 07.24.09 at 6:34 pm }

Phil has been popping the eyebrow for ever, but he must have been working on it because I’ve never seen it go so high before. Missed the beginning so didn’t get the intros or the chopper-in-Probst-style but I’m so glad Wurstsemmel noticed the Spanish. I was very confused for a few minutes as I thought I’d caught up geographically, then… mas importante? Huh?

That cheese challenge was one of the funniest things I’ve seen for a long time. I’m glad I know where I can now see it over and over again.

Was also surprised by the Hillbillies’ fitness, but even more so by Jennifer who, on reaching the top of the hill, was all “that is the hardest thing I’ve ever done”. What? She and Preston did look as though they’d be very entertaining, but I’m not sorry that they’re gone. One Jonathon/Victoria in a TV show’s lifetime is enough for me.

Phil’s signing on the mat made me cry. I heart Phil.

And… Ned Schneebly!

7 Wurstsemmel { 07.24.09 at 9:53 pm }

You know, Injera, we should really be impressed. Shouting at foreigners in an incorrect foreign language so they’ll understand is still a step up from shouting louder in English

8 Jacqui { 07.24.09 at 10:05 pm }

Finally watched the 2nd half of this episode! The cheese task was hilarious! Didn’t they used to make the first episode one and a half hours though instead of one?

9 Reality Raver { 07.24.09 at 10:06 pm }

Wurstsemmel – LOL, so true the about the shouting and the fact they were speaking in Spanish. One of those blondes (sorry still getting a handle on whose who) has had so much plastic surgery.

par3182 – I have not noticed the eyebrow before, but will be much more observant from now on.

Culinary boner – I suspect there would be a lot of women who would love Phil raising the one eyebrow to them.

Injera – I thought Jennifer would be sportier. It is a pity about that pair going. I am sure they would have been very amusing. But hopefully Mike or Ned to you will come out with some zippy one liners. I seriously cannot see them topping the cheese challenge this series.

10 sourkraut { 07.25.09 at 12:35 am }

Ho Ho Ho
Gauche Americans abroad. Can Barack obama make up for these people? GOOD LUCK
love the communication. To a taxi driver “choochoo” OMG this is the nation that sets their watches by the train timetable, speaking of which, don’t they exist in the anointed states?

glad to see ALL swiss yodel all day long and wear monumentally oversized cow bells. that ought to suck the tourists in.
Cheesus! Why did it take so long to figure out to use the stupid back pack frames as sleds for sliding the chsddars on/
patronise the deaf guy? (but seemed to hear perfectly well some of the questions put to him.) Is this the johnny fairplay of Amazing race? (or perhaps my eyes are too tired and i could not keep up with the sign language1
Anyhoo I’ll give it one more week, cause at this stage i dislike them all equally
PS I found it (cunningly disguised as a “THE”)

11 charades { 07.26.09 at 3:25 pm }

I laughed at the drinking Swiss watchers falling about laughing as much as I did the competetors. What a crack up of aN episode.
More of that type of challenge please.

12 sourkraut { 07.26.09 at 6:35 pm }

I believe these clowns are going to Germany next. Cant wait for some Basil Fawlty “don’t mention the war comments”