There was an impressive comeback on The Amazing Race 33 episode 6, and it was given the most attention in the edit and on the mat, too, but there was a second: Arun and Natalia went from last place, and 15 minutes behind everyone else, to placing fourth.
Sure, that may not be as impressive as Ryan and Dusty going from last to third and then stripping off their life jackets 🥵 in celebration.
But it was a significant comeback for a team that has struggled most legs.
This was a leg that did not involve any self-driving—perhaps an advantage for Arun and Natalia, a team that has continually struggled to navigate and drive—but that also meant there was very little opportunity to get ahead. It was just clue → Detour → Roadblock → paddle → Pit Stop
The leg began with the teams boarding a charter plane—though interestingly, it did not seem to be this charter plane, which had The Amazing Race’s logo on its side.
The “destination unknown,” as Phil Keoghan told the teams, was Corsica, and the teams started at an “ancient Roman bridge,” which did not appear to be adjacent to an airport, so they were transported there off-camera.
From the start line, a group left every 15 minutes:
- Ryan and Dusty, Lulu and Lala
- Kim and Penn, Raquel and Cayla, Akbar and Sheri
- Arun and Natalia
That 15-minute penalty seemed to be Arun and Natalia’s only penalty for arriving last during last week’s non-elimination leg; there was no Speedbump task, or at least, we didn’t see it, and I cannot imagine they’d have had time to do something else with their placement.
Next episode, there will be just two departure times. Teams #1 and 2 are Kim and Penn, and Raquel and Cayla, while every other team will leave in the second group.
After departing, the teams were transported to the Detour, and to the Roadblock; the only self-transportation was an upstream paddle in a kayak to the pit stop. The vans and little Jeep/golf carts appeared to be production vehicles, driven by masked people who spoke English, and were certainly not taxis.
The Detour locations were practically next to each other, and that’s where Ryan and Dusty fell far behind—not because they chose the wrong Detour, but because they were not following directions as they attempted to make three baskets of cheese.
Many teams opted for cheese over the other task, saddling and leading a mule down a path, but the mules weren’t the problem on that option, it was the harnessing of them. The distance seemed quite short—literally just to the other Detour location.
Ryan and Dusty ended up doing both, bailing on the cheese after 40-something minutes. That allowed every other team to leapfrog them, but Ryan managed to leapfrog Akbar during the Roadblock, a super-fun looking task of “canyoning,” which Phil described as having to “slip and slide their way down this one-and-a-half mile river.”
Ultimately, Sheri and Akbar were eliminated, and that was entirely on Akbar, whose slowness during the river challenge allowed Ryan to pass him. I’d normally not point that out except even in this leg, he berated Sheri for her slowness, but Sheri has always come through, overcoming her fears multiple times, and never caused them to be eliminated.
At least Akbar admitted that “it was me today, Phil.” Before the leg began, he said, “for us, the game plan is to be more in sync.” He was right: bye bye bye!
Here are some other things that happened during the episode:
- At the start of the leg, Penn said he’d “sized up” the other teams, and determined “Dusty and Ryan are physical specimens.” If only he’d been at the Pit Stop during the striptease.
- Kim provided the foreshadowing: “There’s no way we can stop Dusty and Ryan. Dusty and Ryan have to stop themselves,” she said, and that’s exactly what (almost) happened.
- Dusty shared this metaphor: “I would have to think that the birds are chirping on the tree branches. What those birds don’t know is that I’m a sneaky little tomcat, I’m gonna climb up in there and eat all their little eggs and them.” I don’t really understand what it refers to, but it did scare me.
- “Slow and steady,” Akbar said, as if slow has been his preferred speed all race. Then minutes later he told Sheri, “Come on! I am walking because you are going slow.”
- “This is a new Kim,” Kim said. I thought old Kim was pretty great, too, and I admit that Kim and Penn are a fun team to watch, and not just because they seem to have the best chance of beating Ryan and Dusty. Perhaps I have low expectations for “Internet Personalities,” typed the far-less-famous Internet Personality.
- Cayla and Raquel joined Kim and Penn with the mule because “four minds are better than two,” they said. I’d say over the course of The Amazing Race’s 33 seasons, two mule minds would quite often be better than four team minds.
- Ryan and Dusty chose the cheese Detour because Dusty was an experienced cheese-maker, and Ryan said, “basically, we’ve got to trust Dusty’s instinct, because he’s the only one who’s done it.” But when Dusty wanted to change tasks, Ryan decided that Dusty’s instinct was flawed: “I feel like it’s smarter just to stay.”
- While leading his mule, Penn said, “our horse is getting slightly over us.” Maybe because you called it a horse?
- Raquel and Cayla named their mule with a portmanteau of their boyfriends’ names: “Coltony.”
- If there was any moment that indicated how this leg’s tasks were relatively tame, it was Kim identifying a challenge: “To inflate a watercraft was a little intimidating,” she said.
- Lulu and Lala came in fifth, and likely would have easily been ahead of Arun and Natalia had they not screwed up and carried their backpacks to the river. “We should have read the clue,” one of them said. I need a clue to tell me the difference between them.
- Dusty arrived at the pit stop grunting, which Phil described as “a lot of emotion there,” but there was something else they were more interested in displaying. As Raquel said, as Ryan and Dusty flung their life jackets aside, “they want to show their muscles.”