Sweet Scientists Amy (left) and Maya (right) make their way from the Pit Start at the Fullerton Pavilion in Singapore to the Philippines on Episode 10 of The Amazing Race 25.
Leg 10: Singapore to Philippines
This leg kicked off with one of the things that irk me about The Amazing Race, and that's when everyone has to hustle to get to a place for no reason at all. The front runners bust it to keep their lead, and the rest of the pack try to keep up, only to discover all that wheeling and dealing with the people doling out airplane tickets was for naught, simply because a flea market flower shop doesn't open until 6:30 the following morning.
I'm sure the travel accommodations are crucial, but this much drama should never take place in the offices of a travel agent, especially when the payoff is so minimal -- it's all so much anticlimax in this episode's first four minutes. Meanwhile, the confrontation between the #SweetScientists Amy and Maya and #TheWrestlers Brooke and Robbie following the latter team's dirty tricks in Singapore didn't live up to the show's promotional hype. The pair of UW-Madison grad students simply brushed off the matter.
Add the fact that this ended up being a non-elimination leg, and you know you're headed into a stinker of an episode.
The main thing that I and at least a few other vocal Amazing Race fans took away from this episode was that the Philippines look kinda gross. From the multiple times that Brooke had to cover her mouth and nose to block out the apparently horrible scents around Manila (the episode is titled "Smells Like Dirty Tube Socks," after all), to #TheDentists Misti and Jim breaking down upon seeing so many unattended young children squatting in the filthy streets, this was far from a great ad for the nation’s tourism board.
Amy and Maya, though, weighed in optimistically about their experiences, pondering the busy traffic on a weeknight and comparing the jeepney that took them to Rosario Municipal Plaza with riding in a limo.
The Detour for this leg was a choice between "Catch" and "Coach." In "Catch," the team had to gather about 300 pounds of fish; #TheWrestlers were the only team to choose that task, and they excelled at it. It pushed them into first place ... for a little while, until they got waylaid by the Switchback. But more on that later.
For the "Coach" option, the teams had to assemble and mount a sidecar onto a motorcycle based on minute specifications. #TheDentists got held up, as they did with a similar Detour in Copenhagen, but finally managed to identify a glaring problem that was holding them back. The #SweetScientists wrapped it up handily, though, with Maya reflecting on how she assembled a homogenizer for her ice cream research (it is too a real thing!) to help them get past this obstacle.
What followed was a Switchback, apparently an especially difficult throwback challenge from a previous season. This one involved teams plowing a patch of mud with a water buffalo in search of a buried clue that would take them to the Pit Stop. #TheWrestlers were out front on this one, but for some reason they selected the largest mud patch and landed in last place after #TheDentists and #SweetScientists more or less immediately discovered their clues, ending up in a footrace with the #SoulSurfers Adam and Bethany.
The preview at the end of the episode foretold of some trouble for the #SweetScientists, specifically Amy, who did not look like quite the picture of health even before crashing a bike of some sort into a car. However, #TheWrestlers have a Roadblock to accomplish in the next leg after narrowly dodging getting cut, so there's hope yet for our hometown team.
Keep up with the #SweetScientists and view images of them racing on the team's Facebook page.