Amazingly stupid people on "The Amazing Race"
Or at least compared to other reality shows that have drawn Channel Surfing's collective interest -- "Top Chef" returns Wednesday, woo-hoo! -- "Race" kind of glides by season after season with a winning premise, but never boasts much in the day-after drama department. It just keeps winning Emmy's -- seven straight -- for "Outstanding Reality Competition," that's all.
But I'd be remiss if I didn't at least comment on the overwhelming glee as Kelly, the Texas divorcee, got pelted in the face with dye and water (see picture below) during Sunday's episode. You see, Kelly and her best gal pal Christy are typical pampered Americans who not only believe the world revolves around them, but love to make fun of people who aren't part of their glamorous social circle back home -- they're ex-cheerleaders/dancers, so you get the drift. They also just ditched (or got ditched by) their husbands, which means they're all "I don't have to iron shirts anymore, ya'll," leading to false feelings of empowerment as they prance around India in sports bras.
Now normally, those qualities wouldn't make Kelly and Christy true reality TV villains. But after Sunday's episode, they proved that not only are they super-insensitive to other cultures -- commenting that India smells bad while in a taxicab won't win you favor with locals who don't sip Mochachinos and go to the spa every weekend -- and other contestants -- ewww, what's grosser than gross, kissing Andrew or Dan? -- they're also really, really, really stupid.
During the episode's roadblock challenge, contestants had to run through a gauntlet of dye-throwing and water-spewing natives celebrating a re-enactment of Holi festival before climbing a ladder and pulling an envelope that read "AMAZING RACE" among a majority marked "TRY AGAIN." Get past that whole paint-in-your-nose nonsense, and it's pretty straightforward stuff, right?
Honestly, it was about as much fun as you're ever going to see on reality TV -- spoiled brats getting pelted in the face with dye and seeing their hair turn all shades of the rainbow while calling fun-loving Indians a bunch of a-holes. But watching the sheer stupidity of Kelly as she whined about getting dye in her mouth, and then climbing the ladder, only to pull down a random envelope instead of one marked AMAZING RACE AMONG A SLEW OF THOSE EMBLAZONED WITH THE WORDS TRY AGAIN only led to hysterical fits of laughter on my couch. This went on three more times until they finally re-read the clue, and naturally, the Texas Twosome found themselves on elimination row.
That these two brain surgeons also misread clues on previous challenges only made the paint-a-palooza that much sweeter to witness. Karma, girls, karma. Act like an ugly American and you'll look like one with purple paint splattered on the side of your dome.
Now go try out for "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader" and show your insensitive ex-husbands what they're really missing!
-- Thomas Rozwadowski, firstname.lastname@example.org