Recap: The Amazing Race 32, Episode 12 – Now It’s About Winning
One last look at Manila before teams fly Business Class on Philippine Airlines direct (?!) to New Orleans for the Final Leg. Upon arrival in New Orleans, teams hop into cabs and hurry over to Armstrong Park in the French Quarter.
Teams must now hop onto a float on Bourbon Street and collect 50 red and 50 gold beaded necklaces being thrown from the balconies matching the ones on the grand marshal. Will & James move into first with Hung & Chee seemingly close behind. Riley & Maddison’s taxi gets them lost and puts them far back.
The boyfriends stay in the lead when they open the next clue revealing the Road Block: Who will be left holding the baby? For this Road Block, both team members must put on a washboard and join a band on the way to Café Beignet. There, the team member performing the Road Block must dig through king cakes for a mini baby Jesus. Then both team members must eat six beignets to receive the next clue.
Will gets a head start with the cakes when Chee arrives. Will finds the baby even before Maddison is able to get started. Will & James start with the beignets, but are having some difficulty with the powdery treats. Will feels like vomiting and James has to eat four of the six.
Hung and Riley see Chee’s baby on the table, but he does not. It pains Hung not to be able to help Hung.
Will & James can now make their way to Hall H at New Orleans Convention Center revealing another Road Block: Who wants to take a swing at this Road Block. For this Road Block, teams must climb under the Crescent City Connection Bridge and leap out to grab a clue above the Mississippi River.
James is not happy about heights, but he completes the Road Block. Will & James must now rappel off the bridge and roll a 10-foot ball down the street to Mardi Gras World.
At Mardi Gras World, teams must search the float warehouse to find a crate containing 32 puzzle pieces which they will use to assemble a globe using their balls. They must then perch it atop a float to receive their next clue.
Even though they have to fix their messy completed globe, Will & James eventually get the thumbs up long before Hung & Chee even arrive. They can now make their way to the Superdome, the Finish Line.
Will & James run onto the field and cross the Finish Line where Phil declares them the winners of The Amazing Race 32. James is so touched to have been able to run the Race with Will after having applied many times before with other people. The other teams are so happy for them. But even more so when Will decides to propose to James. Which he accepts of course.
Hung & Chee finish as Team #2 and Riley & Maddison finish as Team #3.
Welp, the season ended just as predictably as it played out. Will & James won the Leg as soon as their taxi passed the other teams at the beginning. It was a pretty processional kind of Leg. Especially when you have the bungee and rappelling right in the middle of it. The teams were already so spread out by the time they reached Bourbon Street that one pseudo-luck task with the beads and the needle in a haystack task with the king cakes wouldn’t be enough to change the outcome by then.
So in that sense, the linear Leg was not very well-designed. Even though a night Leg in New Orleans is an amazing idea.
The tasks on their own were great and certainly a wonderful ad for New Orleans and the fun that you can enjoy there. Together, everything felt very uninspired and flat. That doesn’t have anything to do with the teams. But I don’t think the Leg itself really provided much opportunity for real, exciting competition.
It was indeed hilarious at the first Road Block though with Hung feeling helpless and saying “I can’t help him at all!” when Chee couldn’t see the baby. Well, well. Imagine if you couldn’t help other teams during the Race! Funny stuff.
I thought the bridge jump would be something like TAR28 in Los Angeles when teams had to leap out and grab the clue. But it wasn’t that difficult.
The globe task, however, should’ve been a memory task. Something with geography, flags, locations. Anything. Having a memory task here would’ve been the perfect antidote to maybe spice things up this Final Leg.
Thinking about night Final Legs, TAR30’s Leg in San Francisco definitely trumps this one. And in remembering that, the globe task could’ve been similar to the exciting Final Task in TAR30 that helped decide the Race.
Another possible memory task could’ve been on Bourbon Street with a float of items from the Race or something like that. Or having that memory task from Manila actually take place here in New Orleans and be more difficult. Let’s see teams try to give each other answers here. lol
I think two tasks they could’ve done using the locations they did feature:
1. The Manila music task on Bourbon Street. Have bands scattered throughout the French Quarter playing music from the Race. Teams will still have to identify the countries and flags plus put the music in order. They could even incorporate the beads by having teams catch necklaces with the flags on them. Then using those necklaces to identify the countries.
2. A TAR12 or TAR30-style Final Memory Task at Mardi Gras World. Have teams assemble a float using items, locations, etc representing things from every Leg of the Race.
Anyway, a pretty anticlimactic and predictable finale to an anticlimactic and predictable season. In that sense, I guess it was perfect!
My Subjective Team Rankings
Chee: “It feels good to be back on American soil.”
Will: “I was pushing with all my fingers trying to feel the baby.”
Will: “Every time I would swallow, it would just come right back up.”
James: “What the heck was that?!”