More spoilers from CBS
'Laughlin' exit speeds start of new 'Race'
October 31, 2007
CBS last week mercifully pulled the plug on Viva Laughlin.
Who saw that coming? Well . . . besides anyone who remembered the similar fate that befell Steven Bochco's surreal Cop Rock in 1990. That was the last drama that thought it was a good idea to have characters arbitrarily burst into song and dance, and that experiment lasted only 13 weeks.
Those three months must seem like an eternity to the like-minded minds behind Viva Laughlin, which was on the air for just two episodes before CBS said enough.
But this musical mushroom cloud has a silver lining for reality TV fans: CBS is plugging that hole on Sunday nights with the 12th season of The Amazing Race (7 p.m. on CBS 4), which the network previously said wasn't going to make it on the air until 2008.
So get your pretend passports ready for some more virtual globehopping. We break down The Amazing Race by the numbers:
5 consecutive Emmys have gone to The Amazing Race, all for outstanding reality competition series. 2 episodes were axed from this season after producers did away with the nonelimination pit stops to help quicken the pace and ratchet up the suspense. 30,000 miles are covered by the winning team in this year's race. 5 countries where The Amazing Race had never been will be featured in this season's trek, including Ireland, Lithuania and Croatia. Other locales include Burkina Faso, West Africa, and Taiwan.
15 of the 22 contestants are from California.
1 all-male team, which should help level the playing field. Young all- male teams have won the past two races and five of the nine previous races (not counting the seasons that pitted families or all-stars against one another). This year's pair is a grandfather and grandson.
3 all-female teams, which include married lesbian Episcopal ministers, two sisters and a pair of blond friends from Los Angeles. No all-female team has ever won The Amazing Race.
5 teams consist of couples who are married or dating, which always increases the chances for bickering and blow-ups. source