Recap: The Amazing Race 28, Episode 9 – Salt That Sand
All teams are on the same flight to Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia, arriving at 10pm. Once in Denpasar, they must make their way to Tanah Lot Temple where they will take a number for three morning departure times.
Brodie & Kurt and Sheri & Cole are first to depart at 6:15am. They must deliver two types of offerings to monks at two separate locations: Pura Enjung Galuh Temple and Tanah Lot.
Both teams go to the Tanah Lot with the first offering, but that’s wrong. That allows 6:30am teams Burnie & Ashley and Tyler & Korey to come running toward Sheri & Cole who tell them exactly what to do.
Brodie & Kurt find the first temple was actually right next to where they picked up the first offering. They set it down and the monk hands them the next offering… a snake.
After delivering the snake, teams must find the next clue near Goa Lawah Temple, the Bat Temple.
Here, teams will find the Road Block: Who’s worth their salt?
For this Road Block, teams must collect seawater and pour it onto beds of black volcanic sand to allow the water to evaporate. They will then scrape enough ready salt from hollowed coconut trees to fill four bags.
Kurt, Burnie and Tyler decide to do the Road Block.
Sheri & Cole, meanwhile, find the Speed Bump which has them selling ten breakfast bakso for Rp10,000 and eating one. They seem to be very leery of the bakso meatballs and think it’s testicles. They are disgusted, but are able to eat it.
Back at the Road Block, Rachel decides to do the task which she and Zach immediately regret. Cole and Matt decide to do the Road Block and easily pass her.
After the Road Block, teams must head to Pantai Mertasari. And here, teams will find ANOTHER Road Block.
For this Road Block, teams must help build a huge kite and then fly it.
Ashley and Korey MUST do this Road Block. Brodie arrives next and is lost, so he copies Ashley’s kite. Sheri, Dana and Zach arrive and all six teams are doing the Road Block.
Zach moves quickly, but Korey has finished with Ashley close behind.
Teams can head to Semawang Beach where they must hop into an outrigger which they will row to a traditional Phinisi boat, the Pit Stop.
Tyler & Korey get to the Mat first and win $5000 each. Burnie & Ashley are Team #2, Sheri & Cole are Team #3 and Matt & Dana are Team #4.
It’s down to the last 2 teams. And it’s Brodie & Kurt to finish 5th, leaving Zach & Rachel King last and eliminated.
An interesting episode. Some good things, some bad things.
First, I was surprised to see the first task since TARUS avoids extra, non-Detour, non-Road Block tasks like the plague. Then when it appeared there would be no Detour on this Leg, it made sense. Still, a good task, especially at the start of the Leg. The departure times though are unnecessary, especially on a Leg that ended up as linear and barebones as this one.
The first Road Block was a great physical task and very unique and fresh. It’s great that it was a very local task. The bad part, as always, was putting the cluebox within sight of the task. That allowed teams to see what everyone else was doing and influence their decision. Same thing also with the task at the beginning. Teams saw the snakes so they weren’t shocked when they got to the locations.
The second Road Block was also solid and the first kite flown would’ve been amazing had it not been for the strange, poor editing. Still, it was an above-average task for contemporary TAR.
I think there should’ve been another task in between the two Road Blocks though, if not a Detour.
The rowing to the Pit Stop was okay, but completely inconsequential to the end results. Putting a task earlier would’ve helped prevent the Leg being so linear and in turn, being decided at the beginning of the Leg instead of having teams compete until the end.
The rocking boat was a fun Pit Stop though.
So overall, it was an above-average Leg, especially in oft-visited Indonesia. But a Leg that could’ve been much more full and exciting than it was.
In an extra nitpick: While I love the return of Microgramma for the team IDs on the show, the yellow-green is still weird and the non-capitalized use of the font looks ugly. I was surprised though to see this bonus video use Bank Gothic, but also place “Dubai” centered instead of aligned to the left:
It looks so much better. I think TAR Canada does their locations like this. TAR Australia uses both fonts, but TAR Australia’s graphics always look the best of any TAR franchise.
My Subjective Team Rankings
None of the teams really stood out in a good or bad way this week. That’s not a good thing.
Zach & Rachel were a team with lots of potential; both to Race well and to provide some entertainment. Unfortunately, we only saw flashes of both. They did well in only one Leg and only really meltdown in another. They were sadly invisible the rest of the Race. And Rachel fought through that Road Block, but it wasn’t really a bad decision for her to have done it considering it IS a Road Block. I remember Mary Jean in TAR6 doing the Senegal salt Road Block too. What eliminated them more was the linear Leg not allowing them any area to try and catch-up.
Sheri & Cole started out the Leg strong with Sheri especially having no problem with the snakes while everyone else made a big fuss over them. But then their disgust at the Speed Bump was excessive and uncomfortable. It’s a wonder TAR put so much of that in. And Sheri being so friendly to the other times might ultimately hurt them in the Race. That would be sad.
Dana & Matt were pretty invisible this Leg. Especially compared to their meltdown last week. Burnie & Ashley‘s “always a bridesmaid” storyline will end one of two ways: They win the last, most important Leg. Or they will get eliminated before the Final Leg. Ashley was good at the Road Block though.
Kurt & Brodie using their Express Pass one Leg early was an alright decision. I did not realize Kurt’s been carrying the Road Block load all season. Probably because TAR has been focusing on #Blodie so much, the team became boring and one-note. Then TAR decides to drop in actually interesting things about them (Kurt’s cancer, Brodie failing) on this Episode 9 instead of earlier.
Tyler & Korey just try too hard to play to the camera. Britney or wigs or boyfriends or puns or annoying laughs… it’s all bad shtick.
Zach: “I’m sorry I’m sweating on your kite.”
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