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Welcome back, TAR fans! Is it just me, or have these first few shows been really tough, challenge-wise? When last we left the teams, Duke and Lauren had been eliminated after getting lost in the streets of Vietnam and losing precious time, Tom and Terry earned themselves a 30 minute penalty for not following directions, and Peter proved himself even more of an ass by leaving Sarah to struggle behind him in the rice paddy on the way to the Pit Stop. Sorry, I’ve got no love left for this guy. After last week’s adventures, we’re now down to eight teams. What will cause them trouble this week - ornery animals? Flat tires? Nope, it’s rowboats. Yes, really. Let’s find out what happened this week....

We’re Here To Pick Up Our Dong!
We start out in Hanoi, Vietnam, last week’s Pit Stop. Phil tells us that Rob had a bout of heat exhaustion and had to seek medical attention before going on with the Race. Rob is shown sitting sadly with his feet in a bucket of water, trying to cool down. Kimberly is nowhere to be seen, thankfully. I’m sure they’d be arguing over something if she was there. Mary’s ankle is still bothering her, but she powers on. Being the first team to the Pit Stop last week, Erwin and Godwin get to leave first, at 10:55 pm. They open their clue to find out their next task: teams must travel by taxi 20 miles to Hanoi, and find Ly Thai To Garden to get their next clue. Tyler and James are next to leave, and make some 3rd-grade comments about dong (Vietnamese currency). Har har. Bicker buddies Rob and Kimberly leave soon after, followed by Dustin and Kandice and Peter and Sarah. Sarah makes a few comments about how disappointed she is by certain aspects of Peter’s personality. You and me both, girl. Lyn and Karlyn are next, then David and Mary, who comments that she’s just a couch potato who watches lots of reality tv. (Psst, Mary - come join us!) Tom and Terry bring up the rear, trying to keep their spirits up.

A taxi race ensues, and Tyler and James arrive first. Rob and Kimberly snark on how much Peter bugs them (join the club) as the teams bunch up at the corner, trying to listen to their next clue coming from the speaker. Dustin and Kandice stop on the way to listen to a box of crickets. Why, I don’t know. Maybe one of them speaks cricket. After realizing that the chirping bugs mean nothing, they join the others at the statue and get the next clue: take a taxi across the Red River to Ben Xe Gia Lam, then take a bus to Ben Xe Bai Chay and find the Hydrofoil Harbor. Now, remember - these instructions were given only verbally. I don’t know about you, but I’d have one hell of a time writing down the correct words. Never mind pronouncing them again. Tyler, James, Peter and Sarah all grab their cab drivers and make them listen to the instructions just in case. Rob and Kimberly order their cabbie to follow Tyler and James, and freak out after they lose them. Mary flirts with her cab driver (in Vietnamese!) and David jokes that she can’t take the cabbie home with her. Rob and Kimberly bail on their cab, returning to the corner to get the instructions again. They get a new cab driver, and bail on him after he acts lost. “I’m done talking with foreigners,” says Rob. Nice.

All of the freaking out was for naught, as they find that the bus station doesn’t open til 5. The teams all end up on the same bus, and run to the Hydrofoil Harbor for their next envelope to find:

Roadblock. One person from each team must climb 90 feet up a sheer cliff using mechanical ascenders. Once at the top, they’ll receive their next clue.

Is Stupidity A Handicap?
The teams scramble to get to one of the boats that will take them to the cliff. Just as Lyn and Karlyn prepare to board one of the boats, Dustin and Kandice hop on it. Needless to say, the moms from Alabama were pissed. Karma bites the beauty queens, though, as one of them suffers a nasty gash on her leg. The boats race across the water, with Rob, David, and Terry getting to climb first. Their respective partners cheer them on, and Sarah is worrying about making it up the cliff. Yes, she volunteered, but Peter didn’t even argue the point. As she waits her turn, Peter says “Pull your handicap placard out and tell them you’re next in line!” Oh yes, he did. I have to fight the urge to throw things at the tv. Anyhow, Rob completes the task first, with David and Terry right behind him. Up go Karlyn, Godwin, and Sarah. Sarah really struggles, with little encouragement from the jackass Peter. Tyler and Dustin arrive, and they all finally make it up the cliff to open their next envelope: teams must travel by boat to Sung Sot Cave for their next clue. Rob and Kimberly are first to the cave, finding the clue quickly. They open it to find:

Detour. Over or Under: in Over, teams must fill a rowboat with provisions, deliver them, and return a signed invoice to complete the task. In Under, teams must row out and haul in 30 oyster baskets, then deliver them to the pearl farmer.

Row, Row, Row Your Boat
Rob and Kimberly choose Under, and immediately begin bitching at each other in the rowboat. Apparently rowing the little boat is harder than it looks, because they flounder about in water, nearly capsizing it. I almost wish they had. Tom and Terry fight with the boat (and each other) also, as do David and Mary. All of the teams struggle with the exception of Tyler and James, who row through the wind with relative ease. Lyn and Karlyn are the only ones who have decided to do Over, making their deliveries fairly quickly. Meanwhile, Tom and Terry have made the mistake of drifting too close to Peter’s boat in the oyster fields, and Peter loses his temper, shoving their boat and yelling at them. I really hope Sarah is paying attention to this. He then turns to yell at Sarah, whining about how he wants to give up. “I don’t want to do this anymore!” They finally manage to get their 30 traps delivered, and Sarah tell us on the boat ride back that she’s frustrated with Peter wanting to give up. Does he say anything? Explain himself, or assure her? No, he sits there with a smirk that makes me want to slap him silly, and picks at his elbows.

Enough about that moron. Rob and Kimberly are in the lead, racing to the Pit Stop, but others are still trying unsuccessfully to row back across the bay. Tyler and James make it back, but their captain forgot to pull the boat’s anchor up, slowing them down greatly. They make a few smartassed comments to the crew, but nobody understands them, thankfully. Dustin and Kandice take forever to get the traps pulled up, but they still beat Tom and Terry, leaving them behind. David and Mary, meanwhile, have completed their task and are heading towards the Pit Stop. Mary spies Phil on the shore and exclaims “That’s Phil, in the orange shirt. I know Phil - scrawny, little ol’ gorgeous thing!” Scrawny? Nah. Gorgeous, yes. Kandice and Dustin get confused, thunking that they have to row to the Pit Stop. Apparently, one of them has let the clue get wet and torn so it’s now unreadable. They figure out that they have to ride the boat back, but still argue over the torn clue. Lyn and Karlyn are having great difficulty rowing back, as are Tom and Terry. Tom finally gives up rowing and jumps into the water to pull the rowboat to its dock. Tears are flowing from several teams on the ride in, as they all think they will be last. Here’s how they ended up:

1st - Rob and Kimberly
2nd - Peter and Sarah
3rd - Tyler and James
4th - Erwin and Godwin
5th - David and Mary
6th - Lyn and Karlyn
7th - Dustin and Kandice
Eliminated - Tom and Terry

Arriving at the Pit Stop at dusk, the unambiguously gay duo of Tom and Terry are told by the always-handsome Phil that they have been eliminated. They take the loss well, affirming their love for each other and all of that happy, sappy stuff. Join us next week as the teams wrassle some gators, and Sarah goes off on Peter. I’m just hoping that one of those gators will go off on Peter. See you then!

I don't want to hear 'baby,' 'dude,' or 'sister' one more time! waywyrd@fansofrealitytv.com