Recap: The Amazing Race 21, Episode 3 – “I think I must have made out with like 947 Indonesian people today.”

Recap: The Amazing Race 21, Episode 3 – There’s No Crying in Baseball

The Leg

The leg with the threat of a Double U-Turn begins with the first four teams. Natalie & Nadiya, Trey & Lexi, Jaymes & James and Abbie & Ryan, running around the market like chickens with their heads cut off, not knowing how to get to the first Route Marker at Antika Jaya Padang Restaurant.  They try to work together, until the Twins find out they need to take a taxi.

Unfortunately for them, they get the bad taxi driver, allowing the other three teams plus Josh & Brent to arrive at the restaurant first where they open the Road Block.

In this Road Block, teams must serve 20 plates of Padang food all at once to a waiting table of patrons.  If they drop any of the plates, they’ll have to start over.

Jaymes and Ryan finish first with Lexi and Brent close behind.  James & Abba manage to finish and leave even before Natalie & Nadiya arrive.  Brittany & Caitlin catch up and the twins leave just as Rob & Kelley arrive at the restaurant.

Meanwhile, the first five teams head to the Surabaya Gubang Train Station where they must hop on a train for Bangil.  The train leaves at 7:36am and the Natalie & Nadiya just miss it.  Now they and the other three teams must wait for a train that departs at 10:50am.

On the train to Bangil, teams must spot vendors who will hand them their next clue.  Once in Bangil, teams must take a Becha to Alun-Alun park for the Detour.

In this Detour, teams choose between two Indonesian art forms.
In Egg Head, teams will take part in a traditional Indonesian mystic art known as Debus.  First, teams must take a Becha to pick up four eggs and bring it back to the park.  There, a coconut will be lit on fire on top of their heads to fry the eggs before they will have to eat them. 
In Lion’s Head, teams will take part in a traditional Javanese procession known as Reog.  Putting on costumes and a 40 pound lion mask, teams will join the procession while making stops along the way to perform certain moves.  

Trey & Lexi, Jaymes & James, Abbie & Ryan and James & Abba choose Lion’s Head, while Josh & Brent go for Egg Head.  They all finish before the other teams even leave Surabaya.  Teams must not head to Perliman POS I.

Here teams find the Blind Double U-Turn.  But none of the first five teams use it.  They saunter on to the Pit Stop at SMA Negeri 1 High School where Abbie & Ryan finish 1st and win a trip to Fiji.

Trey & Lexi, Jaymes & James, James & Abba and Josh & Brent finish 2nd through 5th respectively.

The “stragglers” arrive in Bangil and Gary & Will are left behind at the station.  At Alun-Alun, Caitlin & Brittany struggle to pay their Becha driver.  All teams choose Lion’s Head.

Natalie & Nadiya finish the Detour first, head to the U-Turn, smash their face into the camera and hurry to the Pit Stop to officially finish Team #6. 

Rob & Kelley arrive at the U-Turn and wanting a cushion before the Pit Stop, choose to U-Turn Gary & Will.  The monster truckers take 7th.

Brittany & Caitlin finish the Detour and hop on a Becha, but their driver has no idea where Perliman POS is.  Gary & Will manage to find the U-Turn first, but decide to U-Turn Rob & Kelley.  They head back to the park to do the Egg Detour.

Brittany & Caitlin also return to the park and see Gary & Will.  They continue looking for the U-Turn at the park and eventually decide to just look for the Route Marker on the way.  Gary & Will finish the Detour.

The girls finally find the U-Turn and the cluebox, but their Becha driver again goes the wrong way.  Gary & Will arrive at Perliman POS and grab the Pit Stop clue and head off.  Brittany & Caitlin turn around and see them and tell their driver to follow them.  They stay quiet until they are seen and they pass the guys. 

They speed up, but at an intersection, the girls go left and the guys go right. 

 Turns out right was right and Gary & Will escape elimination by checking in 8th.  Brittany & Caitlin arrive just behind them to finish 9th and are eliminated.

Episode Thoughts
What an odd leg. 

Now first, the tasks themselves… all three of them, were cool on their own.  Incredibly easy, but nice.  Breaking plates is always fun, the head frying was interesting and anything that has to do with local culture like the procession is great.

But the leg design was one of the simplest yet for this era of TAR.  Not to mention that 3 and a half hour difference between trains.  You had teams finishing the leg before the other teams even left the other city.  We all know Departure Times are whenever Bert & Co. want them to be these days.  No more 12-hour Pit Stops.  And we know they scout every single logistical aspect of the legs.  So either they didn’t know the trains left so far apart from each other or they intentionally had teams begin the leg at times when they knew they’d be able to make the first train.

If so, then… WHY!?  Separating already strong teams from teams already in the back by three hours?  Come on now.  That totally diminishes any excitement, even from an ending as unprecedented as this one was.

They could have easily started teams at say, 7am which would have meant all teams would’ve taken the 10:50 train.  Not only would everyone have been equalized, the Detour would have been a lot more frenzied and the Race to the U-Turn more dramatic and tense.

Instead, half the teams finished the leg before the halfway point of the episode.  So bad that having the U-Turn right before the Pit Stop, which is the worst possible place to put a U-Turn, doesn’t even compare to that horrible train equalizer.

When the teams got that Pit Stop clue at 8:30, I was all “OMG, they didn’t even do anything this leg.”

Probably one of the most poorly designed legs of TAR I’ve ever seen.

Pasar Pabean Market


Antika Jaya Padang Restaurant

Train from Surabaya Gubang Station to Bangil


Perliman POS I

SMA Negeri 1 High School


Pasar Pabean Market

Natalie & Nadiya 6:07am
Trey & Lexi  6:12am
Jaymes & James 6:16am
Abbie & Ryan 6:19am
Josh & Brent 6:26am
James & Abba 6:34am
Caitlin & Brittany 7:08am
Rob & Kelley 7:22am
Gary & Will 7:32am





In order of completion
> or < indicates team switched Detours.

Who did the Road Block?
Who wants to serve a balanced meal?

In order of completion; Italics indicate who did the Road Block
3 Jaymes   James 1
2 Abbie   Ryan 2
1 Trey   Lexi 3
2 Josh Brent 2
2 James   Abba 2
1 Natalie   Nadiya 3
2 Caitlin   Brittany 2
3 Rob Kelley 1
2 Gary   Will 2

2 Amy   Daniel 1
1 Rob   Shiela 1

SMA Negeri 1
Bangil, Indonesia

1st Abbie & Ryan +3
2nd Trey & Lexi =
3rd Jaymes & James =
4th James & Abba +2
5th Josh & Brent =
6th Natalie & Nadiya -5
7th Rob & Kelley +1
8th Gary & Will +1
Eliminated Caitlin & Brittany -2

Natalie & Nadiya Natalie & Nadiya – Definitely bad luck for them this leg.  A poor taxi driver can always make a huge difference and for them it was a 3-hour difference.  Still, they backed up their talk from the train and at the very least took 1st amongst the “stragglers.”  At least they were still hilarious.  I replayed the scene of them at the U-Turn a couple of times.  lol
Trey & Alexis Trey & Lexi – A good leg for them.  They are getting it done and are doing very well whether or not they’re working with another team.  They are quietly on their way to a strong, dominant run.
Jaymes & James Jaymes & James – A good, solid leg for them.  They’re definitely more than capable of Racing hard and Racing well. Jaymes is fun, but he could probably tone it down a bit before he gets too annoying, yes?
Abbie & Ryan Abbie & Ryan – Definitely a good leg for them, benefiting from the train equalizer sure.  But they’re doing very well.  Winning 2 legs out of 3, I hope we don’t have another Rachel & Dave in the making though. 
Gary & Will Gary & Will – Maybe not as bad as last week, but another rough leg for them.  They’ve got Caitlin & Brittany’s horrible driver to thank for surviving another week, that’s for sure.  I’ve got to root for any team that are actual TAR fans, but they’re not doing themselves any favors.  They have to step it up. 
Caitlin & Brittany Caitlin & Brittany – They pretty much collapsed the 2nd half of the leg.  Their horrible drivers definitely didn’t help, but who knows how much time they wasted wandering around the park after they were taken in a circle.  What were they doing?  It seemed like they didn’t even know they were back at the Detour location.  They could saved a lot of time, in spite of their drivers, if they hadn’t wasted to so much back at the park.  A tough elimination for them.
Josh & Brent Josh & Brent – Another quiet, but solid leg for them.  They’re moving along fine, but if they’re going to go far, they’re going to need to step it up a little bit. 
James & Mark James & Abba – Going their own way is certainly not a bad Race strategy.  They seem to have what it takes to do things on their own.  Okay Race so far for them.
Rob & Kelley Rob & Kelley – An okay leg for them, considering being able to stay reasonably ahead in the 2nd group.  It looks like, however, frustration will return next week.  So we’ll see  if they can handle things a little better.  
Quotes from Episode 21.03

Jaymes: “I think I must have made out with like 947 Indonesian people today alone just by putting that in my mouth.  You just tasted Indonesian.  I’m tasting years of culture right there, in my mouth.  It was not pleasant.”

Brittany: “You just cost us the Race, bro.”

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