I have finally watched the episode!
It's cool to have teams go from Dar Es Salaam to Zanzibar by boat. It gives off some TAR11 vibes, but that one took about 12 hours per boat for some reason.
Tara & Joey U-turning Seth & Olive was a very strategic move! It's surprising to see Joey & Tara leading. Tara picking Joey and making them both underdogs paid off in a way that they don't seem like a threat to others. In contrast to that, Seth & Olive proved how strong they were as a team, from SLT to Leg 1, even to Leg 2 and also the Leg 3 detour. Seth & Olive finishing the detour first shows how strong of a team they are!
In contrast to the strategic U-turn, a personal U-turn also happened this leg.
The 1st 2 teams made some use of the Blind W-turn at least. I don't mind seeing the W-turn in front of the detour, but I do agree that having it at the end of the detour shows that the team has earned the right to be there first, whereas the one before the detour is usually based on luck. TAR27 had a U-turn before the detour, and that leg was somewhat linear since it was held in the same country as the previous leg. This one is right from the boat ride to the Blind W-turn, so it was also luck-based. I'm fine with the W-turn being placed in front, I just think there are better ways to position it.
Back to the personal U-turn drama, I honestly don't like Ashton making a big fuss out of this, but I get why she wants to use the U-turn. Vanck was much funnier, and I find him the most entertaining part of the drama. He's like the 4th wheel in a tricycle.
Redmond: "You should be scared."
Vanck: "Uh... okay."
It's cool how we got to see some more backstory from London, like how we saw the one from Tara last leg. It sucks how weaving with palm leaves made LoLo switch detours though.
It's nice to add the 4 local language phrases at the end of the build detour, but I wish it was a switchback from TAR12 instead. Ever saw other franchises that had an ARI mid-leg alongside a detour and a roadblock? That's what I wish they could've done for the 4 local phrases. It's not a big deal for me. This leg still delivered. If it was a bit longer like that though, then I'd most likely like the leg even more.
Shamir & Sara got into each other's nerves again, but at least it wasn't as bad as last time. They could do really well as I see potential in them as a team. It just so happened that a building task wasn't fit for them for some reason.
I like the detour this leg. Both tasks require attention to detail, but the difference is on the large- or small-scale making of the product. The tasks are more similar in nature than contrasting. I think it's only the size that makes a difference. It's also cool how the Build detour helped the community in Zanzibar. I'm guessing the Weave detour did too, but maybe I just didn't see how.
As for the roadblock, I like it too. It's a nice way to spice things up by having the list be in a different language from English, and the leg money being needed for the task. I like the dramatic parts wherein the teams don't have enough money by the time they got to the roadblock. Even I wouldn't expect having to use leg money for a required (non-fast-forward) task. The task is more of getting help from the locals, thanks to the list being in a local language. Despite help from locals, some teams still couldn't get everything done as soon as possible.
Back to Matt & Red and Vanck & Ashton, I like how the former made a big comeback after finishing both sides of the detour. That's not something anybody usually sees, especially in the US version. It's also cool how they finished the detour in 7th, and not in last. From there, it's nice how Matt & Red passed 3 teams during the roadblock. It's so funny how Vanck & Ashton's confessional happened before Matt & Red's arrival to the pit stop.
That was so awkward, yet it showed how Matt & Red proved to Vanck & Ashton that they can't be taken down by a U-turn.
That was such an amazing comeback by Matt & Red!
Redmond: "I like Vanck, but I don't like Ashton." <-- Me right now on their drama.
That sudden lost passport was a plot twist.
One moment we see 2 teams fighting for last at the roadblock. The next moment, another team is not yet done with the leg because of a missing passport. It's nice to see #TeamFun still survive, but the change of the mood from that sudden heart attack was not so nice to see. At least they survived!
Seth & Olive being eliminated this leg and this early was a total shocker!
All it takes is one U-turn!? I thought they could make a comeback like Matt & Red, but what happened!? I now wonder how long they took at the Weave detour. The U-turn choice by Tara was still strategic, as it would put them behind from the front, but I didn't expect them to be booted out by it.
I thought they would have some other trouble aside from the U-turn that got them eliminated, but I am really surprised that the U-turn was the only reason they were eliminated. There is no way avoiding it, as they got to the Blind W-turn in 8th place from the ferry terminal. It was like a Trez & Lou case from TARA5. There was almost no way of surviving the leg based on that design and that position. It's sad to see a strong team like Seth & Olive go.
To the other racers though, that is one big threat down! Tara played the game very well, from picking the partner and now to this very strategic U-turn move.
I'm thinking Seth & Olive could've survived the leg had they done the weaving before the building.
I can see this from comparing it with Matt & Red's performance. On their respective 1st detours, both were in a hurry in finishing the respective tasks, but when they got to the other detour, it's a different feeling. Matt & Red getting to the 2nd detour and still seeing teams there lightened them up, knowing that they are not last and still have a chance in catching up. Eventually, they did beat one team on the same side of the detour. Meanwhile, Seth & Olive might have thought that they have 1 detour down, so they probably relaxed a bit since the other side of the detour that they have to do is already done. But even if they do not have that way of thinking though, there were no teams on the weaving side, so they could not tell how fast they should work to stay away from last place. This is unlike Matt & Red case wherein they could see compare their progress to Sara & Shamir's at the very least. I'm no psychologist; this is just my analysis. If Seth & Olive weren't U-turned, I don't think they will surely check in for 1st place, because they had issues with the Brazilian currency, but the Blind W-turn changed their game.
P.S. I'm still bothered by the fact that I do not know whether they had won something for winning Leg 1 or not.
Overall, this was a really nice leg!
I'm excited for the next double episode!