As I mentioned in the first post, I'm rewatching TAR and started from the second season. The producers decided to follow the successful formula from the premiere season, eleven teams of two with pre-existing relationships. And having to travel to different locations by solving clues in sealed envelopes.
Just like in the first season, we had a gay couple, a mother-daughter team, a married couple trying to work things out, an older team, an alpha male team, but unlike the first season, we had twins, a brother-sister team and annoying buddies.
I did like the mix of countries this season. Starting out in the Nevada desert, the teams went to my favorite international city, Rio de Janeiro, Iguaçu Falls, South Africa, Namibia, Bangkok, Hong Kong, the Australian Outback, New Zealand, then Alaska and finally San Francisco.
And the teams. The teams. What about the teams?Deidre & Hillary:
Mother and daughter team that was not in the race long enough to make a distinct impression. Teams that are the first to be eliminated rarely make an impression and this is the case with this team. They showed guts rappelling down the face of Sugar Loaf Mountain, but they were beaten by the Gutsy Grannies. Again, not much to go on because of their very brief stay on TAR.Hope & Norm:
The same goes here for Hope & Norm. Yeah, they're married. Yes, they get along. No, they hardly argued. But they were again beaten by the Gutsy Grannies and Blake & Paige to the mat in the jungle of Iguaçu Falls.Peggy & Claire:
They were indeed gutsy. They couldn't run. They couldn't climb or rappel, but what they couldn't do physically, they made up in gumption. Who knows how long they could have gone had they not had airport troubles in London. They were well liked and unfortunately, got the mercy clue by the time they made it to Nelson Mandela's jail cell.Shola & Doyin:
They got stuck in the sand in Namibia, then could not do a task because the park was closed and then were eliminated. This could have been a big threat to the other teams because they were physically fit and strong. However, they drove off the beaten path in the desert and that was their downfall. Plus, having a taxi run over your foot back in Rio didn't help matters either. Ouch!Cyndi & Russell:
I did not think I was going to like the married preachers, but they ended up being a likable team. Plus, at one of the pitstops where Wil got drunk, it was Russell who put him in his place. Anyone who could make Wil shut up, I automatically like. And Cyndi was just a saint for going into the batcave in Thailand amid guano and disease. By that time, their fate had pretty much been sealed and when they hit the mat, it was time for them to go, but not before making me like them a lot. Mary & Peach:
Sisters to the end, Peach was quite spoiled and Mary made us quite aware of that, but I liked this team. While Peach would make faces about the smells she encountered or the tasks she had to do, she was a trouper. My favorite part about this team was in South Africa when a native said one of my all time favorite lines, "They will take all this ... and they will keeeeellll you!" I laugh every time I hear that. Knowing that they had to forge ahead, Peach finds the experience in the township not as bad as she thought, plus her giving sunglasses to the little kids was a very tender moment in the race. Mary was a tough girl. Peach was someone who needed a push and Mary was there to give it to her. Yes, Peach quit, but by the time she and Mary reached Hong Kong, you knew they weren't long for the race. I also found myself strangely attracted to Mary when I watched this on GSN. Don't know why. I don't endorse quitting the race, but if you're going to go out, have lunch in a great Hong Kong restaurant and then get eliminated. Nothing wrong with that. Itchy & Scratchy:
Annoying, annoying, annoying. Yes, I know they were Gary & Dave, but Itchy & Scratchy was perfect for them. There were times when I thought they were funny, but overall, Gary would not stop talking and was just a pain in my a**. Even Dave yelled at Gary to shut up. It's too bad they didn't reach New Zealand because I would have loved for the bungy jump company to cut their cord. Even when Phil tried to eliminate them, Gary had to make it a Hollywood production. It's not Dave's fault that Gary was annoying, but I can't say too many nice things about this team.Danny & Oswald:
Team Cha Cha Cha. Who couldn't love this team? My favorite scene was their shopping spree in Hong Kong while the other teams are stressing out trying to get their confirmed flights to Australia. While the other teams were battling for position at the airport, Danny & Oswald not only find a travel agent in a five star hotel, but they get an hour to shop, plus they get a Mercedes to take them to the airport! Shopping for perfume, going to Starbucks, who could not love that? And their discovery of Fern in Bangkok gave us the term for locals who help out the racers. Yes, Ozzie didn't like being out of his element, but overall, he did the tasks with a smile. Danny got his glitter shirt dirty in the last task before their elimination, but they had fun and always had style. And who couldn't love them chasing Phil around the mat in All Stars? You can easily put this team in my Top 5 Teams of All Time. Eliminated in fourth place in both TAR2 and All Stars, I would have loved to see them go for the top spot in either season.Blake & Paige:
Brother & Sister team, I found them to be a bit creepy. When in Australia, Blake says he wants to marry a woman just like Paige. Ewwww. Yes, I love my sisters, but not in the way Blake does. I was uncomfortable watching her ask him to give her a backrub. And they touch each other in a way... never mind. Even with the creep factor, I was still rooting for this team to win the race because Wil & Tara was just an unlikable team and I wanted someone other than an Alpha Male team come in first. I have to admire their guts because they were mostly in the back in the pack until Australia when they played golf in a confusing layout and in triple digit temperatures. And who couldn't root for Blake and he and Wil were having it out early on? Now, Blake is part of Toms Shoes
that is trying to give new shoes to impoverished children. I find that totally admirable. Plus, after looking for his niche, he's totally found himself. Good on ya, Blake. Wil & Tara:
One of the first really unlikable teams in the history of the race. Yes, Joe & Bill, Team Guido were the first "villains", but you knew they weren't as bad as they were edited. Wil & Tara were just unlikable from the get-go. Wil yelled at every opportunity. Tara flirted with Alex every chance she got. What type of teamwork is that? Wil was a jerk from the start. Yes, you want to win the race, but at the same time, there's a right way to treat people and a wrong way. Unfortunately, Wil paved the way for Jonathan in TAR7. And when he lost the clue in Hawaii, there wasn't a single viewer who was sympathetic. When both Blake & Paige and Chris & Alex refused to give them their clue, I was really hoping that this team was going to get the boot. But they came close to winning the race. You could say justice prevailed in the end. Or you could say Chris & Alex won despite themselves. All I know is that Wil deserved everything bad that happened to him on the race. Not a nice guy and Tara didn't come off too well in my eyes, either.
Chris & Alex:
From my home region of New England, they spoke with stereotypical Boston accents and they were always chewing gum. When they gave confessionals or talked on their way to the mat, they were always chomping away at their gum. I found that quite annoying. Maybe you didn't notice that, but after viewing this race over the last week and a half, you start to notice these things. How they won is beyond me, they were always getting lost and even when they seemingly had a leg in the bag, they would find a way to finish last. In the first two seasons, I don't think another team had as poor a sense of direction as Chris & Alex. They were saved twice by non-eliminations. I was glad they won because I didn't want Wil & Tara to win. However, I would have preferred another team hitting the final mat first.
So my final thoughts on this season:MOST ANNOYING TEAM
- Gary & Dave. Hands down.TEAM ELIMINATED TOO SOON
- Danny & Oswald. I would have loved two more episodes of this team.TEAM THAT SHOULD HAVE WON
- Blake & PaigeTEAM THAT DESERVED ELIMINATION
- Mary & Peach. Peach had had enough.MOST ANNOYING INDIVIDUAL
- Wil. He was such a jerk. MOST ANNOYING INDIVIDUAL NOT NAMED WIL OR GARY
- Tara. Her yelling was grating especially in the mine. "I'm not a miner!" "I know! You're an idiot!" What is that?THE TEAM WHO AWARD
- Named in honor of Jeff and Dave, a team so devoid of personality, that the snarks at Television Without Pity named them Team Who, this season's Team Who is Deidre & Hillary only because they were in one episode. BEST LOCATION NAME
- Christchurch, New Zealand. BEST TASK
- Herding the SheepWORST TASK
- Meet the Bats. How no one contracted a disease in that cave is unbeknownst to me.
That's it. I'm watching TAR3. When I'm done, I'll post my thoughts. Do you agree? Disagree? What are your thoughts?