Recap: The Amazing Race 21, Episode 5 – “Chill out, freak!”

Recap: The Amazing Race 21, Episode 5 – Chill Out, Freak

The Leg
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Before the Pit Start, James receives a call from home.  His wife tells him his father has Stage 4 cancer.  Using it as extra motivation for the Race, James & Abba set off from the Pit Stop.  They must first find a taxi stand on foot, then head to Jatrabari Market and look for a man selling begun, or eggplant, who will give them their next clue.

Maintaining their lead, James & Abba get the next clue saying they’ll find the cluebox under the bridge at Ferry Ghat Road while Abbie & Ryan and Natalie & Nadiya leave the Pit Stop together.

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At Ferry Ghat Road, James & Abba find the Road Block.

In this Road Block, teams will have to build a scale using bamboo, rope and an example provided, then collect enough wood to equal the weight of four stones. 

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James decides to do the Road Block and they finish before any other team arrives.  Back at the Pit Stop, Josh & Brent are lost looking for the taxi stand, allowing Rob & Kelley and Jaymes & James to leave before them and Trey & Lexi to catch up to them.

James & Abba finish the Road Block and open the next clue for the Detour.
In Straw Dogs, teams will head to a factory where they will first help women transfer bundles of jute from a riverboat to inside the factory. They will then prepare 20 bundles of unprocessed jute but whipping them onto a board of giant nails to untangle the fibers.  They will then transport them to the machines and head to the end of the production line to retrieve their finished jute bag with a picture of their next clue.
In Bamboo Jungle, teams must collect 40 pieces of bamboo of various lengths, load them onto a freight rickshaw, and deliver them to a construction site to receive a piece of bamboo with a picture of their next clue.

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James & Abba choose Bamboo Jungle.  Across town, Abbie and Nadiya get started on the Road Block and both teams seem to be hilariously annoyed by each other.  Nadiya finishes first and they head to the Detour.  Abbie is close behind as the other teams arrive and get started with the Road Block.

At the Bamboo, James & Abba deliver their bamboo and receive their next clue, a drawing of the Pit Stop, Lok Shilpa Jadughar.  They head over and officially claim their 2nd leg win in a row and a trip to Malaysia.

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Natalie & Nadiya get started at the bamboo while Abbie & Ryan choose the jute.  Back at the Road Block, Jaymes, Trey, and Kelley finish, but Brent is struggling, not knowing the position of his pin at the top of the scale is in the wrong position.

Natalie & Nadiya are just leaving the bamboo yard when the “Chipmunks,” “Texas,” and the monster truckers arrive and get started.  Abbie & Ryan, meanwhile, manage to finish the jute Detour before the Twins at the bamboo and they head to the Pit Stop to finish 2nd.

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Natalie & Nadiya settle for 3rd.

At the Bamboo, as Rob & Kelley, leave, Jaymes & James are starting to struggle.  They toss some of their bamboo back on the ground next to Trey & Lexi to try and secure them onto the rickshaw better.  But when they leave, they don’t realize they’ve left three pieces on the ground, which Trey & Lexi notice.  At the construction site, they are turned back.

Rob & Kelley and Trey & Lexi step on the Mat 4th and 5th respectively.

Jaymes & James push themselves through the Detour.  They head to the Pit Stop, Jaymes does a faceplant and they officially finish as Team #6.

Josh & Brent keep their heads up and when they meet Phil, they get good news.  This is a non-elimination leg.

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Episode Thoughts
An overall good leg.  It is great, and frankly, surprising to see such physical tasks on current era TAR.  Both the Road Block and Detours were rough going and I guess the best place for them was on a non-elimination leg.

Would’ve been nice to see an equalizer though.  Good for James & Abba to maintain their lead, but they had a 2-hour advantage over the other teams and likely finished before half the teams even left the Pit Stop.

Still, it was great to see tasks that were actually challenging for once.  Reminded me a lot of TAR10, the most physically demanding season ever.  Kudos to all the women left in the Race, showing they could easily handle no matter what kinds of challenges were thrown their way.

And how hilarious was the slapstick comedy provided by the bamboo eh?

This was also the 2nd time the teams only got a dollar at the start of the leg.  Should be interesting to see if money will become a problem for the teams in the future.  (Let’s hope!)  That’s also surprising, since TAR’s been wanting to make things easy for teams lately.  Maybe Bert & Co. are trying to challenge the teams a little more this season.  That is definitely welcome. 

Shambazaar Chan Mia Ghat
Old Dhaka


Sadhar Ghat
Old Dhaka

Jatrabari Boro Bazar

Ferry Ghat Road under Demra Bridge

Bamboo Market, Tarabo Bazar

Latif Bawani Jute Mill

Lok Shilpa Jadughar


Shambazaar Chan Mia Ghat
Old Dhaka

James & Abba 7:39am
Abbie & Ryan 9:41am
Natalie & Nadiya 9:42am
Josh & Brent 10:53am
Rob & Kelley 10:59am
Jaymes & James 11:10am
Trey & Lexi 11:34am



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

Who did the Road Block?
It Ain’t Heavy, It’s a Road Block

In order of completion; Italics indicate who did the Road Block
3 James   Abba 2
2 Natalie   Nadiya 4
3 Abbie   Ryan 3
4 Jaymes   James 2
3 Trey   Lexi 3
4 Rob Kelley 2
3 Josh Brent 3

3 Gary   Will 2
2 Caitlin   Brittany 2
2 Amy   Daniel 1
1 Rob   Shiela 1

Lok Shilpa Jadughar

James & Abba =
2nd Abbie & Ryan =
3rd Natalie & Nadiya =
4th Rob & Kelley +1
5th Trey & Lexi +2
6th Jaymes & James =
7th Josh & Brent -3

Natalie & Nadiya Natalie & Nadiya – A great leg for them.  They are definitely a strong team.  They’re motivated, determined and best of all, still fun and hilarious.  I think they are definitely contenders.
Trey & Alexis Trey & Lexi – An okay leg for them, but I was definitely impressed by Lexi.  I know many women would’ve whined or collapsed during that Detour, but she was a soldier and powered through it like it was nothing.  Much kudos.
Jaymes & James Jaymes & James – A little bit of a rough leg for them.  The rigors of the Race must take a bigger toll on big guys like them, since like they said, they’ve been careful with their money.  Still, they didn’t let frustration get them and they’ve shown in the past that they can recover quickly on the next leg.
Abbie & Ryan Abbie & Ryan – It’s great that Abbie & Ryan are motivated to break Davechel’s record, but that doesn’t mean I’d want them to do it.  I think it would not be good for the Race.  But anyway, they are definitely making a strong case for themselves
James & Mark James & Abba – A very good leg for them, maintaining their lead and pushing through both injury and tough news from home.  I’m definitely warming up to them.  They’ve run a solid Race so far.
Josh & Brent Josh & Brent – That was a rough leg for them.  It’s all about the details on the Race; from them wandering around for half an hour looking for the taxi stall to the critical piece at the Road Block.  Regardless, they still pushed through and finished and are by no means out of the Race just yet.
Rob & Kelley Rob & Kelley – Not as crazy this leg, so that’s good.  Kudos to Kelley for doing well at the Road Block.    
Quotes from Episode 21.05

James: “I can assure you though, through the 80s, I was no boy scout.”

Ryan: “Next time someone says ‘Go to hell,’ you say ‘Oh, you mean somewhere in Dhaka?'”

Nadiya: “Yeah Abbie, I’ve made a bloody third-world scale in the back of my garden before.  What do you think?  Like, are you insane?”

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