Recap: The Amazing Race 21, Episode 7 – “Barely know these girls and we have to have our legs on top of each other.”

Recap: The Amazing Race 21, Episode 7 – Off to See the Wizard

The Leg

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It’s off to the airport to try and find the best flight to Moscow.  First place Trey & Lexi have trouble even finding the right airline, so they decide on a Popeye lunch while they wait for the Twins.  Natalie & Nadiya’s taxi driver, Papa, gives them some chips on the way.

Trey & Lexi let the Twinnies do all the flight work and find a flight on Turkish Airlines to Munich connecting to Aeroflot that gets them in Munich at 4am.

Meanwhile, James & Abba and Jaymes & James hop on the earliest arriving flight on KLM through Amsterdam that gets them in at 2am.  

Abbie & Ryan look on the internet, while Josh & Brent go to a travel agent.  The Beekmans flip a coin to decide whether to go through Frankfurt or Athens and Frankfurt wins.

That’s the same flight Abbie & Ryan are taking, but as the other teams set off, their flight is delayed one hour in Istanbul.  And they only have a one hour window to make their connection in Frankfurt.  Needless to say, they don’t make it.  There are no flights left tonight, so they have to wait for a flight via Warsaw that gets them into Moscow at 3:10pm, almost half a day after the other four teams.

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Once in Moscow, teams must head to the Zurab Tsereteli Sculpture Park for their next clue.  With an Hours of Operation at 9:30am, all four teams meet up and they wonder where the other two are.

Upon entering the park and passing by huge statues, they find the cluebox and are told to go to Moskvoretsky Most where they’ll look for Ivan the Terrible’s guards who will hand them next clue.

James & Abba take a taxi, while Texas, the Chippies and the Twinnies run together. 

The Rockers get clue first and find it’s the Detour.
In Alphatbetize, teams head to the Russian State Library where they will be given a list of books, four of which they must find using the card catalog that’s in Cryllic.  After they find the four books, they’ll get their next clue.
In Synchronize, teams must perform a synchronized swimming routine with the next generation of the national team to the satisfaction of the Olympic team coach in order to receive their next clue.

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James & Abba and Trey & Lexi choose the library while Jaymes & James and Natalie & Nadiya choose swimming.

The Chippendales arrive at the pool first and find it isn’t as easy they thought.  They miss the timing and are out of sync on every attempt so far.  Meanwhile at the library, James & Abba get a headstart as Trey & Lexi arrive, but it doesn’t help, so they decide to switch Detours while Trey & Lexi decide to stick with it.

Meanwhile, in Warsaw, Ryan & Abbie and Josh & Brent make a pact to Race this leg together.  They’re down and pretty much think they’re out, so they promise to stay together the rest of the Leg.

At the pool, Natalie & Nadiya start learning the routine, but their young teacher doesn’t speak any English.  When they go through it once, they fail and Coach gets angry.  They consider using the Express Pass, but Jaymes & James convinces them not to.

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Back at the library, Trey & Lexi have found the call numbers for their four books and now must search through the stacks to find the actual books.  After navigating the maze, they head to the librarian who checks their books and gives them the next clue.

Teams must now head to the Luzhkov Most and find the Trees of Love where they’ll find the next clue.

At the pool, Jaymes & James go through the performance one more time and they finally get the thumbs up from the coach. 

Across town, Trey & Lexi find the Trees of Love and the Road Block.

In this Road Block, teams must figure out how to unlock a Race ribbon from the Trees of Love.  Once they’ve opened the 10 locks, their next clue will be inside; a Russian ruble note with a picture of their next destination on it.

Jaymes & James arrive, but Trey finishes and they head to the Pit Stop, the Bolshoi Theatre where they officially step on the Mat first and win a trip to Maui.

Natalie & Nadiya join the Chippies at the Road Block.  But Jaymes & James finish before them and head to the Pit Stop to claim 2nd.  Natalie & Nadiya finish 3rd, but are disappointed by their “crappy” leg.

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Josh & Brent and Ryan & Abbie finally arrive in Moscow and stick together.  They find the Detour and want to do the library, but it closes at 4, so they go swimming.

At the pool James & Abba struggle, but finally get the clue.  Later, Ryan & Abbie and Josh & Brent get started, but it’s a struggle for them too.

At the Road Block, James & Abba get started, but realize they should take their bags from the taxi and release him since they might be a while.  But when they go back to him, he’s gone.  They decide to go finish the Road Block, but when they do, the driver is still missing.  And Abba doesn’t have his passport. They decide to go to the Pit Stop anyway.

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Ryan & Abbie get through the Detour, but still stick around to wait for Josh & Brent.  Brent is struggling and Coach is angry again.

At the Mat, James & Abba check-in.  Phil asks them if they have their passports, but they say no.  Phil says they need to produce the passports.



Episode Thoughts
Wow!  A To Be Continued and it’s not even a double super leg.  That’s a first.  And it prompt interesting speculation as to what happens next week.

Which is what they were hoping for I guess.  So, I actually didn’t expect their taxi driver to really drive off with their bags.  I thought it’d be one of those, “Oh, he just drove around the block” situations.  So I was shocked when they actually stepped on the Mat without having found their stuff.

Now the next question, why didn’t James & Abba keep their passports with them?  They should always be in their all important Race Pouch which is supposed to be always with them, even if they leave their backpacks someplace.

So what’ll happen next week?  If James & Abba are eliminated, why not have just included it this week.  If only to create a cliffhanger for next week, I don’t know.  It better have a big, dramatic conclusion.  A completely different outcome than Zev & Justin or Toni & Dallas. 

The episode itself did feel a little prolonged, if that’s the right word.  And I guess we know why.  The tasks were alright.  The Detour was good.  Who would’ve thought it be easier to use a library catalog in Cyrillic than synchronized swimming.  Or not, I probably couldn’t have done the swimming lol.  And that Coach was awesome.  She was both scary and hilarious at the same time.  The Librarian looked like she could take on the Coach too. lol

I appreciate the Road Block for having the money be the next clue.  We’ve had less and less of those kinds of clues.

So who knows what happens next week.  Ryan & Abbie are apparently safe.  So what could that mean for James & Abba and Josh & Brent? 

Savarona next to Kuruçeşme Cemil Topuzlu Parkı


Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Munich, Germany
Frankfurt, Germany
Warsaw, Germany

Moscow, Russia

Zurab Tsereteli Sculpture Park

Moskvoretsky Most

Trud Sports Complex

Russian State Library

Luzhkov Most, Vodootvodny Canal – Trees of Love

Bolshoi Theatre


Lok Shilpa Jadughar

James & Abba  8:30am
Abbie & Ryan 11:04am
Natalie & Nadiya 12:10pm
Rob & Kelley 12:31pm
Trey & Lexi 12:53pm
Jaymes & James 1:30pm
Josh & Brent 3:04pm




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

Who did the Road Block?
Who’s ready to unlock the future?

In order of completion; Italics indicate who did the Road Block
4 Trey   Lexi 4
4 Jaymes   James 4
4 Natalie   Nadiya 4
3 James   Abba 4

Not yet arrived
3 Abbie   Ryan 4
3 Josh Brent 4

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

Bolshoi Theatre

1st Trey & Lexi =
2nd Jaymes & James +3
3rd Natalie & Nadiya +1
? James & Abba
? Ryan & Abbie
? Josh & Brent

Trey & Alexis Trey & Lexi – They are definitely stepping it up at the right time.  They are well-positioning themselves for a sprint to the Finish Line.  And they’re keeping their down home Texas personalities in tact (save for moneygate last week, but that seems to be old news now apparently).  They aced that Detour when maybe not many people thought they could.  So they’re both physically and mentally strong.  That bodes very well.
Jaymes & James Jaymes & James – They’re keeping themselves in the Race and sometimes that’s all one needs to do.  They’re definitely going to have to step it up more, but they’re doing okay.  They’re also keeping up their happy personalities and have become very likeable over the last few legs.  Kudos to them being the voice of reason for the Twins about their Express Pass.  
Natalie & Nadiya Natalie & Nadiya – No money stealing for them this week, but there was them wanting to give up the swimming Detour even though they knew there was a huge chance two other teams were far, far behind. Good thing the Chippies were there to convince them not to use it.  But if they want to make it to the end, they can’t be having other teams making their decisions for them (even if they are the right decisons).
James & Mark James & Abba – They jump to the front of the pack with the Fast Forward but have had a rough go these last few legs.  Some big hurdles and this one now could be the end of the line for them.  If they end up getting their passports back next week, they’re going to have a huge amount of casual fan support.  I hope I can stay away from that because I do like them and I don’t want to have to not like them because of crazy fans, yeah?
Abbie & Ryan Abbie & Ryan – One wrong decision.  That’s all it takes.  They’re certainly not out yet as the preview showed.  So they still have a good chance of recovering and bouncing back.  I didn’t get their pact with Josh & Brent though.  Very noble of them, but that didn’t really serve any purpose for either team.  Would they have jumped on the Mat together at the end and have gotten eliminated together? 
Josh & Brent Josh & Brent – They haven’t really had a strong Race so far.  And if they do survive next week, they’re going to have to do a lot to stay in the Race.  The other teams have been reasonably consistent so far while they’ve narrowly escaped elimination already as well as get saved by a non-elim.  
Quotes from Episode 21.07

Nadiya: “It’s cold and wet, this is so, like, Russia, dreary and dark and gloomy.”
Natalie: “Isn’t that like Seattle?
Nadiya: “No, it’s Russia.”

Nadiya: “Nobody wanted to give us a ride in Russia.  I swear man, it’s because we’re brown.  In Bangladesh and Indonesia, we were the first ones, VIP service everywhere.”

Nadiya: “Barely know these girls and we have to have our legs on top of each other.”

Jaymes: “Which club you going to?  That’s Moscow, Club gear at 3:00 in the afternoon.  

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