Celebrity Mole: Yucatan
2/4/04 episode recap -- "Up the Noses of the World"
Hello, my precious mole detectives. I see you've taken the business of culling out the mole to a new level--journal numbers, dates on tequila bottles, facial expressions, and the kind of logical reasoning that any lawyer on methamphetamines would surely congratulate. My proverbial pencil has been driven down to its nub. Several contestants pretend to be the mole; are they the mole pretending to be the mole, or are they pretending to be the mole pretending to be the mole? I'm reminded of that "Battle of Wits" scene in The Princess Bride: would you put the iocaine powder in your cup, or would you put the iocaine powder in my cup? Now, a clever man would put the poison into his own goblet, because he would know that only a great fool would reach for what he was given. I am not a great fool, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of you. But you must have known I was not a great fool, you would have counted on it, so I can clearly not choose the wine in front of me.
Sadly, Vizzini kicked the big death bucket. Westley had developed an immunity to iocaine powder, so he put the poison in both goblets. It was not unlike getting an exemption, and Westley advanced to the next round, the fire swamp.
The producers choose a fine collection of opening commentary, the contestants illuminated with Ghost Story At Camp lighting (TM). Angie tells us that "after tonight, if I don't get executed, I'm in." This is the kind of logic that would make me buy a fifth of malt liquor and sit in your bedroom and weep. If Angie doesn't get executed, then she remains in the game--yes, please, tell me your point. Blinking through drizzling black mascara, I watch Mark betokening the kind of split personality disorder that only his momma would love. He re-enacts some sort of drama, and I have no pop culture reference for it. In a booming overlord voice, he tells himself "you will win. You will not stop."
Dennis plays the game of the mole like an athlete. He's just here to "be a good sport." Tracey plays the game of the mole like a forsaken and fallen she-demon: today is her "Judgment Day," she says.
Quit Staring at My Ass
The camera crew travels to the perpetually full moon for this shot. They view the big blue-green spaceship we call "home," unless you're E.T., and manage a hyper-closeup on the Yucatan Peninsula. We see Xcaret, a roving SUV bearing the stars we all know and love. We see Scorpio, the Scorpion, Draco, the Dragon, Cygnus, the Swan, Spasta, the Spastic Bandanna-ed Sportscaster, and Doofus, the Perverted Doofus.
"The next game is called 'Donkey Rally,'" says Ahmad. The contestants are to pair up and collect items for their donkey carts. The pairs are divided into "brains" and "brawns." The brainy-act rides the donkey and uses the Spanish/English dictionary, and the musclemen put items in the cart. They are to travel through a mocked up "Little Mexico" and visit four vendors, their signs bearing instructions written in Spanish riddles. Mark spontaneously starts to bray, such that Ahmad dubs him a Mule Whisperer. Angie trods over to her donkey and tells Dennis, "You said you wanted to see my ass."
The first pair of Dennis and Tracey, Team Pepe, stop off at a chihuahua vendor. The chihuahuas are numbered, and Dennis lifts one up in his palm. Tracey remarks, "When Dennis picked up the chihuahua, it was the scariest thing I've ever seen." Indeed the little dog fit just into his big palm. Up on the top floor of Dennis, the chihuahuas must've looked like ants. Their riddle: Two of man's best friend equal lucky thirteen. Now, seriously, can you imagine Dennis calling up his best friend, a little yapping chihuahua, and saying, "Hey, man. Let's go shoot some pool"? Anyway, Angie and Mark, Team Paco, arrive at the vendor, at which Angie doesn't even bother with logistics and/or the dictionary and chooses the #7 dog, since her lucky number and her journal are both sevens.
Tracey bounces along down the sandy path on her ass. They reach the next vendor, beans. Their riddle: The musical fruit is red. Take 10 pounds. They do, flatulating all the while.
Next Team Pepe comes upon a fruit stand and a canasta de aguacates. Their riddle: Basket of avocados. Taking something from this cart is tragic. Tracey translates that to mean "it would be tragic not to." They erroneously take fruit.
Mark confesses that it was so hot that he saw a bird walking. *rimshot*
The last stand is Custer's, and it is also a stand bearing octopi, known endearingly to the contestants as octopuses. At this vendor they are to pick up five octopi (eight-legged) and place them in the cart. I had to stifle a giggle listening to Tracey's Spanish. She pronounced "ocho," or eight, like "OH-CHOH," with long o's and emphases on both syllables. Spanish for People Who Chew Gum. Anyway, Tracey confesses that, when Dennis picked up the octopi, they dripped on her, and that she'll have a "seriously hard time eating calamari again."
At four minutes left, they reach the fish stand, and they are to choose 5 "rubia" ones. They all call the fish "blond," when another translation for rubia is "light" or "fair." I was half-expecting a fish with long curly tresses and an hourglass figure.
Before their time is up and they meet Ahmad again, the teams Pepe and Paco wait to hear whether or not they won money for the pot. For each stand in which they retrieve the items correctly, they earn $10,000. Both teams fail to procure the correct amount of chihuahuas. Mark bemoans that he didn't have the dictionary, and that he couldn't understand the signs. Team Paco retrieves the incorrect amount of beans, 8.5, while Team Pepe correctly retrieves 10 pounds.
Ahmad informs them that they shouldn't have taken any fruit. Mark utters, "Yes, we have no fruit," saving us from the horrors of the obvious "Yes, we have no bananas" joke, which I have thankfully saved you from. Ahmad notices that he did take a banana. Mark retorts that he took it only to feed the donkey, not to put in his cart. Ahmad doesn't believe him, and Mark pleads unfairness. He confesses that he was "framed" and that the donkey did "look suspicious."
In the game of picking up five octopi with eight legs (as opposed to those sorry octopi with prosthetic tentacles), Tracey and Dennis correctly fulfilled the instructions, and they earn $10,000 for the pot. We then see a few buxom blond fish, all of them standing over subway grates, their skirts billowing up from the hot Mexican air.
Next Ahmad fines both teams for not following the rules. Both teams led their donkeys, which went against instructions. Angie confesses later that she believes Mark sabotaged the challenge, what with that mysterious banana appearance and all. Angie, dear, that wasn't a banana in his pocket.
ABC Back to School Special
The sun sets behind the palm trees. A wind blows. This scene opens in a miniature classroom, cartoon-like with red hues and teeny tiny desks. The four contestants sit in the back of the classroom, their knees reaching their chins. Ahmad has written "Mr. Rashad" on the chalkboard behind where he governs his domain from the classic boxy teacher's desk. Tracey confesses that she didn't do well in school and fears being "the person left behind."
Mr. Rashad welcomes them to "Celebrity Mole Night School." He tells them they have all earned $40,000 just for their perfect attendance. Dennis goofily says, "Thank you, teacher." Mr. Rashad will quiz the students based on questions from textbooks, grade 2 through 6. Each time they choose correctly, they move one desk forward toward the front of the class. Each time they choose incorrectly, they lose $1000 from their pot. The first player which reaches the front will secure the winning money. Each contestant can use a "hold back" card to keep someone else from moving forward. That said, let the embarrassment begin.
The first question asks how many continents there are. The correct answer is 7. Mark and Angie write "7" on their little slates. Tracey writes "5." Next, on which continent would you find the South Pole? The correct answer is Antarctica. Tracey writes, "Greenland." Dennis writes, "Don't know." But when asked what 1/4 of 60 is, Tracey is the only one to get it right. Frankly, I'm glad these individuals have jobs.
Fifth question: what is the capital of New Jersey. Mark writes, "New Brunswick." Tracey and Dennis correctly write "Trenton." Sixth, what is the longest river in the world? Mark writes, "Mississippi." Angie writes, "Colorado." Tracey and Dennis correctly write "Nile." Tracey uses her "hold back" card and chooses Angie, whose confession is voiceovered: "I wonder why she chose me and not Mark." Ahmad stumps them with the saying "Make a mountain out of a blank hill." I "ay carumba" with all of you. I drink three shots of Cuervo, remove my tassles, and call it a night.
I return, for I can not leave my little pepitos hanging. Mr. Rashad asks them "Which general, born in 1741, committed treason before serving in the British Army?" Mark writes, "George Washington." I sigh and curse our nation's educational system. I curse myself for being an educator. Tracey correctly writes, "Benedict Arnold." Angie confesses that "it's not fun to look stupid on TV." Finally, Mr. Rashad asks, "Which two well-known explorers began an expedition across the American West?" Mark: "Ashford and Simpson." Angie: "Mr. Rashad and his brother." Tracey: "Lewis and Clark." She is correct. Dennis stands up, a silly grin on his face. He has written "John Wayne" on his slate. TV has educated our children--there is no doubt. I watch on as the textbook writers from McGraw-Hill collectively drink their Kool-aid.
Tracey wins the game and she is called the "star student." At this point she is met with a tough decision. She can keep her exemption and put $5000 in the pot. Or she can keep the $5000. If she pockets the money, she must give the exemption to another player. While she considers her choice, Ahmad elevates the amount to $10,000. Tracey pockets the money, and she gives her exemption to Dennis. Tracey confesses that this was the hardest moment in the game: she went from the "high of getting an exemption to the low of no exemption."
Ahmad tells us that if she waited a bit longer, he would have increased her pocket money to $20,000. Tracey makes a few requisite "hindsight" comments. The others comment on Tracey's choice of Dennis. Mark, ever the pervert, confesses that "deep down inside Tracey lusts for muy alto black man." C'mon, Mark. Who doesn't? I love Dennis Rodman. I wouldn't trust him to balance his own checkbook, but you gotta love the guy. And so does everyone. Angie comments that Dennis "has played us all really smooth." Mark tells us that Dennis Rodman is the mole. Dennis confesses that Tracey is "too soft-hearted."
In the SUV, Angie jokingly calls Tracey a bitch for not giving her the exemption. Tracey tells Angie that she's "more convinced that either one of them is the mole, and you and I are fighting it out."
Pick the Right Nose
In the final challenge of the day, the contestants must look at a panel of six nose photographs and choose which nose belongs to which celebrity.
The first nose belongs to Jennifer Lopez. Angie points to what will be the correct nose picture. Dennis convinces her to choose a different nose. They agree and they are incorrect. Angie confesses that Dennis "sabotages everything." I wish I'd have kept a count on how many times Angie has said that someone has sabotaged something. To her, everyone is the mole. It's a lot like people who say, "You're all crazy and I'm the only normal one here."
Dennis confesses that he was not "up to date on the noses around the world."
In the last few panels, both Tracey and Angie take over the game. They correctly guess Hugh Grant's nose, Brittney Spears's nose, John Malkovich's nose, Catherine Zeta-Jones's nose, and finally Stephen Baldwin's nose. Angie points out that Stephen's nose is "the one with a zit on it." Ahmad mutters something about OG Wonderbread, and I wish the producers would've, in an earlier episode, given us a clip explaining this bizarre white-boy moniker. Mark says, "I ain't never looked at the man before in my life," and he opts out of choosing which nose belongs to Stephen. He later confesses that if the game was about picking whose butt was whose, he'd have done well. "Janet Jackson, Tyra Banks. . .Laura Ingalls Wilder from Little House on the Prairie--I could tell her butt from anywhere."
The players meet again over dinner, and they toast the soon-to-be-fallen. Ahmad wishes them "Good luck" and flatly says, "I'll miss one of you tomorrow." They get toasted and file out to the quiz-taking location.
The Most Surprising Execution Ever
The light of the big, bright moon shines on the lagoon outside the hotel. The players sit, in sequence, before the laptop bearing the quiz questions. The producers treat us to the players thoughts, voiceovered while they select their responses. Angie again suspects Mark for sabotage efforts during "Donkey Rally," for leading the donkey when he wasn't supposed to, for taking a banana. Mark confesses that Angie hasn't once received an exemption. He tells us that she is the mole.
The surf washes up on a distant Xcaret shore, and the players take their seats in the wooden folding chairs. Ahmad intones that they have been entertaining. He will be sorry to see anyone go. Tracey wants a moment to catch her breath, and she requests that Ahmad enters Dennis's name first. Mark says, "I'm gonna go." Angie nervously licks her lips, flutters her eyes. Dennis sits back, confidently. Tracey's name is entered into the computer. Her thumbprint display shines red. Dennis tells her something like, "You're gonna be here, baby." Tracey puts her hand over her heart. She tells Dennis, whom she thought thought she was the mole, "You were wrong." She hugs everyone.
Ahmad leads her through the hotel lobby while Tracey hums the funeral march. The cast remembers her. Angie says that Tracey always made her laugh and that she was a "fun, little girl." I'm sure Tracey will be contacting you, Angie, after the show. Grown women love to be called that. Like Rudy, will Tracey be similarly remembered for her "Growing Pains"? What ever the case, the little Seaver girl has grown up, and she will never know if she could've won the Mole, had she kept her exemption this round. Angie informs us that Tracey took the "best notes." We see another clip of the dodge balls hitting Tracey's head as she tried to cross the lagoon. Ding, ding, ding, like a cashier ringing up groceries.
At El Taxi Loco, Tracey says that there is one thing she wants to say to the others. She looks back to the camera and says, "I hate you all." She smiles. "Have fun, not too much fun without me. I hope you miss me." Ahmad lovingly tells her that he will miss her. He kisses her hand, the gallant gentleman that he is. Tracey's taxi loco drives off into the moonset, after which she'll probably get deposited around the corner, where she'll probably retreat back to her hotel room for the night. They can't fly her off tonight. What about all the shopping bags she'll have to pack?
Back at Execution Grounds, Mark suggests that the game has gotten tougher. "Somebody here's not my friend." He forecasts wearing a cape tomorrow. In the next episode's highlights, we're given clips of "Mr. Danger," Mark in a big red Superman cape. Also, we're shown the three leftover celebrities standing over what appears to be laptops. "A rule-breaker gets busted." Did someone cheat?
The answers to these questions and more will be revealed next Wednesday on Celebrity Mole: Yucatan. Who is the mole? Who is the guaca? Stay tuned to this forum as your friendly FoRT members try to sleuth out the real double-agent.
No chihuahuas were harmed in the making of this recap.
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