Recap: The Amazing Race 23, Episode 2 – “Zip It, Bingo”
Teams open their first clues of the 2nd Leg in the early morning hours telling them to go to the deck of the Museo Coberta Esmeralda where the officer of the day will post their next clue.
The ship opens at 7:15am, so all ten teams catch up. While waiting, Marie rubs some teams the wrong way with her overbearing personality.
When the ship opens, the teams rush onto the deck of the ship looking for the clue. The clue tells teams to find out the famous phrase uttered by Chilean National Hero Arturo Prat before the sinking of his ship, the Esmeralda. After repeating the phrase, in Spanish, to the Officer, they will receive their next clue.
Teams hurry around the ship to look for the phrase, but Brandon & Adam and Ally & Ashley go out by the street where they ask a local who tells them the phrase: “¡Al abordaje, muchachos!” or “Charge the ship, men!”
They run back to the deck and tell the Officer who hands them their next clue pointing them towards the Irlanda Salt Mines.
Arriving at the cluebox, they find the first Detour of the Race.
For this Detour, teams need to ride bikes into the Tarapacá Salt Flat, the world’s largest salt supply.
In Brining, teams need to fill a tub of water with enough salt to allow them to comfortably float and read a newspaper by carrying sacks of salt.
In Mining, teams must break open boulders of salt to find the clue inside.
While the other teams head off onto the salt flats, Rowan & Shane’s taxi driver gets them lost and in last.
Brandon & Adam, Leo & Jamal and Ally & Ashley get started on Mining while Chester & Ephraim and Jason & Amy pass Nicole who is having trouble on her bike.
As the NFL guys start with Mining, Ally & Ashley decide to switch to Brining and join Jason & Amy and Nicole & Travis.
Jason strips down to his underwear and Amy gets in her bathing suit and the other teams follow suit.
Brandon & Adam are the first to find their clue in their salt boulder and it tells teams to head back to Iquique to hop on a bus to the capital city of Santiago. They’ll find their next clue at the Plaza de Armas. Leo & Jamal and Chester & Ephraim are close behind.
At the salt baths, Tim & Marie’s bickering is annoying Ally & Ashley while Jason & Amy are the first to float and leave with Nicole & Travis right behind them. Tim & Marie manage to pass other teams while Ally & Ashley and Tim & Danny also finish, leaving Nicky & Kim behind as Rowan & Shane finish the Mining side of the Detour before their salt bath.
At the bus station, Jason & Amy, Nicole & Travis, Brandon & Adam, Chester & Ephraim and Leo & Jamal get on the 1:30pm bus to Santiago. It is a 24-hour bus ride.
The last five teams have to take a 2pm bus. But before it leaves, Rowan & Shane ask the counter about it and they say the bus gets into Santiago at 6pm, which is more than 24 hours. They ask if there’s another bus and the counter says yes, at 4pm. Thinking the bus arrives at 4pm, Rowan & Shane buy tickets and trick the other teams as they drive off on the 2pm bus.
But Rowan & Shane go back to the counter where they find out the bus leaves at 4pm, but arrives in Santiago at 10pm. They find another bus that gets them in around 7pm instead.
It is the next day and the first bus arrives at 1:49pm. Teams head to the Plaza de Armas where they find the Road Block.
In this Road Block, teams must become a local shoe shiner. After polishing the shoes of a waiting customer, they must figure out how to pack up the complicated stand in the correct way then deliver it to the storage area six blocks away to receive their next clue.
While the first bus teams get started with the Road Block, the 2nd bus is still en route. On the ride, Kim asks Tim if he knows her husband and it turns out they played baseball at Rutgers together. They decide to stick close together and Tim & Marie consider giving them the Express Pass as they feel like they can trust them.
Back at the Road Block, Chester & Ephraim and Leo & Jamal finish first and they get the next clue pointing them to the Pit Stop at Cascada de las Animas.
Leo & Jamal arrive at the Pit Stop and hastily give the taxi driver their fare. They run to the Mat, but Phil tells them they need to settle their taxi bill before they can be checked in.
That allows Chester & Ephraim to step on the Mat and officially check-in as Team #1 and win a trip to the Turks & Caicos.
The Afghanimals go back to their taxi driver and pay the full 40,000 pesos and have to settle for 2nd, but they are not happy with each other.
Leo: “Are you an enemy or my partner?”
Jamal: “Right now, enemy.”
Phil: ‘That’s not going to work.”
Brandon & Adam take 3rd, Nicole & Travis are 4th and Jason & Amy finish 5th.
The 2nd bus finally arrives in Santiago at 6:44pm and they hurry to the Road Block. While they start, Rowan & Shane arrive in the city at 7:03pm with a chance to catch up.
But Rowan cannot find the shoe shine stand with the Race colors on it. Instead, he pesters a real shoe shiner and persuades him to take over his stand.
Ally & Ashley finish the Road Block first of the 2nd group with Tim & Danny close behind them.
Nicky and Marie are having trouble with their stands with Nicky missing her carpet which she had left at the plaza. Rowan comes to the storage space just as the girls are there.
Nicky begs Marie for the Express Pass, but she doesn’t give it to them. Rowan begs the shoe shiner to let him take his stand, but the cluegivers tell him it is wrong.
At the Pit Stop, Tim & Danny check-in as Team #6 and Ally & Ashley finish in 7th. Tim & Marie end up in 8th.
While Nicky struggles to look for her carpet, Rowan finally finds the marked stand and gets started with the shoe shine.
It is a (seemingly) close trip to the Pit Stop, but Nicky & Kim get there first and finish as Team #9 while Rowan & Shane check-in last and are eliminated.
Well that was a horrible Leg for Rowan & Shane. Tough way to go out, but an absolutely horrible Leg for them. First the taxi in the first part of the Leg then their dumb decision to switch buses. Then Rowan’s horrible mistake at the Road Block. If even ONE of those things didn’t happen, they would still be in the Race. That’s insane.
The Leg was interesting though. I love the Legs with random, way out of the way clues like them traveling to the salt flats then heading back to Iquique just to take a 24-hour (!) bus ride to Santiago. We haven’t seen that a lot on TARUS in a while, so it was nice to see a Leg not so linear.
The Detour was hilarious. Phil tweeted tha nowhere in the clue did it say to put on bathing suits, so it was hilarious to see the Racers provide some gratuitous skin scenes (I doubt anyone’s complaining). It was hilarious to see them practically naked AND without shoes on carrying huge sacks of salt across the dirt and rocks. So odd and random and hilarious.
The other side of the Detour reminded me of Dani on TARPh smashing her partner Mish’s hand with a sledgehammer trying to bust a huge concrete slab open. Good times.
The Road Block was pretty simple and something we’ve definitely seen before. The needing to pack it up the right way is one of those times when teams can screw up even the simplest tasks.
It was an exciting ending, I have to say. And overall a solid episode.
in subjective order
Jason & Amy didn’t really make a big impression this episode, which is exactly why I think they’re going to go far in the Race. They’re slipping into “the nice couple that goes far” slot I think. Nicole & Travis are looking to prove their blunder last Leg was just a one-time thing and if they do, they are also contenders. Chester & Ephraim are so far turning out to be a more likeable version of the Globetrotters.
Rowan & Shane seemed to have potential, but their two mistakes this Leg coupled with bad luck did them in. Ally & Ashley are doing well for themselves, but I wish they didn’t have to humor Leo & Jamal with all this wifey stuff. It is nauseating. Tim & Danny are chugging along fine as are Brandon & Adam who could go on a James & Abba run pretty soon.
Leo & Jamal are still trying too hard and even their Mat Chat argument felt so forced. “Are you my enemy?” That’s a little overdramatic. Tim & Marie, on the other hand, don’t feel as forced this week and seeing Marie make herself look like “El Diablo” could be fun to watch, but we’ll see.
But worst this Leg has to be Nicky & Kim who went from being a solid team last week to one that begs for an Express Pass after they screwed up. They weren’t Racing well already, lagging at the Detour, but that whole scene at the Road Block was horrible. Then them saying this Leg was the hardest thing ever in their lives. Uhh… okay. The other teams seemed to have no problems.