Kent and Vyxsin, finally eliminated, defend their rule-breaking, call Globetrotters “big cowards”

Sunday’s episode of The Amazing Race had a fantastic ending, and not just because Kent Kaliber and Vyxsin Fiala were finally eliminated after yet another screw-up and in the middle of yet another argument.

It was especially awesome because the penalty they incurred for not reading the clue correctly (it said explicitly to walk; they took a cab) and thus stood by while Zev and Justin, who were well behind the pack, got lost on the way to the mat as the penalty clock ticked by. Although the drama of that moment was edited oddly–they were just suddenly standing on the mat, killing some of the tension–it was wonderful they survived and the annoying goths went home.

While the episode seemed to cover very little geographic ground and had one Detour challenge that was ridiculously more difficult than the other (digging through frozen snow to find a dummy), it was helped by some really funny moments; stunning, high-definition images of snow blowing off the Matterhorn; and drama at a fun challenge featuring chocolate versions of everyone’s favorite Amazing Race product placement, the Kayak roaming gnome. I mean, Tripadvisor. No, Travelocity, that’s it! I forgot since Phil Keoghan only said it about 412 times.

That drama involved Vyxsin, who told Reality TV World that she did not take Flight Time’s chocolate gnome and that the Roadblock took teams about three hours, adding that “Kisha, Mallory — they were all giving me all kinds of grief about it for like hours and hours and hours.” Kent said Big Easy “was absolutely being a bully. There’s no doubt about it. If you go back and watch the footage, Vyxsin clearly didn’t take his stuff. The fact of the matter is, the Globetrotters — when they don’t get their own way, they turn into big babies — behind those jerseys, they’re big cowards.”

Whatever happened, Kent uses that to defend Vyxsin’s behavior during the rest of the leg. “Vyxsin had endured so much abuse from the ['Harlem Globetrotters' Big Easy and Herbert 'Flight Time' Lang] and so much wrath from them, she was in a state where she felt like, ‘We already lost the game,’” he said.

They spend much of the interview defending each other and their behavior, often sounding rational, which contrasts strongly with their actual behavior. For example, Vyxsin said, “We both know that the secret to friendship and love isn’t, ‘Let’s be perfect all the time.’ It’s understanding that we’re human and we’re flawed, and we have moments where we say things and do things that aren’t really what we’re about in the big picture.”

Except that doesn’t explain why, for example, she does things like threaten to never talk to Kent again, or just act terribly toward one another. It’s one thing to get stressed out and say something you don’t mean. It’s another to have a consistently ugly interaction.

The goths were also consistent in their rule-breaking, which never really hurt them until this leg of the race. As to their biggest screw up, which was erased with a lame 30-minute penalty, Kent read out of the show’s rule book during their conversation with Reality TV World, saying, “Should a team take a form of transportation that is not the clue required form of transportation and does not result in a time advantage, the penalty is 30 minutes.”

In other words, while there’s plenty to be irritated about with Kent and Vyxsin, we need to direct our ire at the producers for that one.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.