Recap: The Amazing Race 2, Episode 8 (Hour 1) – I’m Not a Miner! No, You’re An Idiot!
Original Airdate: April 24, 2002
With $100 in their envelope, Gary & Dave begin the 8th Leg at 4:11am.
Teams must take a sampan back to shore and hop on a bus to Repulse Bay where they must find the statue of Tin Hau.
Chris & Alex depart at 5:43am with Tara & Wil leaving at 5:50am. Tara & Wil consider going for the Fast Forward. To win this Fast Forward, teams must head to the Pi Lin Monastery and climb up 268 steps to the Tian Tan Buddha where they must search for the clue.
After finding out where the monastery is, they wonder if Chris & Alex have decided to go for it. A local person tells them to take any number 6 bus to Repulse Bay. But when the bus that Gary & Dave are already on passes them by, Tara insists they go for the Fast Forward. After hearing Tara told Chris & Alex during the Pit Stop that they would be going for it, Wil is sure they decided to try and go for it ahead of them. Tara and Wil argue.
Chris & Alex manage to get on the same bus as Gary & Dave.
Oswald & Danny start the Leg at 6:29am while Blake & Paige leave last at 6:32am.
Tara & Wil arrive at the ferry terminal to get them to Lantau Island. With the next ferry departing at 6:50am, Wil again second guesses going for the Fast Forward and they ultimately decide not to attempt it. Tara is frustrated, but Wil blames her for blabbing to the boys about their plans.
Tara & Wil end up getting on the same bus to Repulse Bay as Blake & Paige. Oswald & Danny, meanwhile, are walking the streets looking for a “nice” hotel to ask for directions. They finally reach the Mandarin Oriental and ask a concierge for info.
Tara & Wil are relieved to see Chris & Alex at the Tin Hau statue. Wil says he likes the boys, but knows they have to separate sooner rather than later.
Oswald & Danny arrive at the shrine just before opening and all five teams are there when it opens for the next clue. That clue tells teams to find Murray House in Hong Kong. After Wil pushes Gary on the way to the clue, the teams rip open the envelope revealing the Detour: Dragon or Lion. In Dragon, teams must paddle a dragon boat (regularly manned by 12 people) along a 600m marked course. In Lion, teams must carry a ceremonial lion (typically handled by two people) through a marked course through narrow markets and steep stairs that is 2400m long.
Chris & Alex, Gary & Dave and Tara & Wil decide on the dragon boat. Oswald & Danny decide on the lion. Meanwhile, Blake & Paige get lost when they direct their taxi driver to the wrong area. They end up borrowing the driver’s cell phone to call the tourism board to ask for the right directions.
While Oswald & Danny are having fun with the lion, the dragon boat teams are struggling. Except for Chris & Alex who get the next clue telling teams to fly to Sydney, Australia. Oswald & Danny move into 2nd. They stop by someone’s home to ask if they can use his phone to book tickets. They secure standby tickets, so they again go back to Mandarin Oriental to see if they can help get them in touch with a good travel agent. They pass by Gary & Dave at a local store while on the phone. Gary & Dave think Oswald & Danny have some kind of special power to be so relaxed and uppity at them all the time.
Tara & Wil, Chris & Alex and Blake & Paige rush to the airport instead to find tickets. Oswald & Danny get to a travel agency who tell them to give them an hour to find the best flights. Oswald & Danny use that hour to get Starbucks and go shopping for cologne. After their shopping, Oswald & Danny get tickets via Singapore as well as a Mercedes to drive them to the airport.
The other four teams hop on a flight via Bangkok and wonder where Team Cha Cha Cha is.
Well, Oswald & Danny are the first team to arrive in Sydney at 6:25am and hop in a taxi to get them to the Opera House. The other teams arrive at 7am.
The Opera House clue reveals a Road Block. For this Road Block, teams must go on a walking tour of Sydney by deciphering clues written in Australian slang. Teams must find a surfer, a little boy on a bike, a woman in a bikini and a man from the Outback. The task is not over until they receive a clue that tells them to reunite with their partner.
Oswald decides to do the Road Block and gets started. Danny hides around the corner as the other teams arrive. Dave is next to start the Road Block followed by Alex, Blake and Wil. Blake and Wil, not reading the clue correctly, immediately return to their partners after only getting the first clue. Though they are unsure at first, both teams decide they’ve done nothing wrong and continue on according to the first clue received from the surfer. Chris tells Gary that the two teams must have done something wrong because there’s no way “idiot” Blake found a clue first.
Oswald, meanwhile, completes the task correctly and can now reunite with Danny so they can head to the Pit Stop at the rooftop of the Museum of Contemporary Art.
Oswald & Danny officially step on the Mat as Team #1 and win a seven night Royal Caribbean cruise vacation they can enjoy after the Race.
Chris & Alex check-in as Team #2 and Gary & Dave are Team #3.
Tara & Wil and Blake & Paige continue collecting clues together until they get the final clue telling them to return to their partners. Both teams realize they have to do the entire task over again, but correctly this time.
Tara and Paige both agree their partners suck at doing tasks and never read the clues properly.
It’s a taxi Race to the Pit Stop. And it is Tara & Wil who check in as Team #4. Blake & Paige are last, but this is a Non-Elimination Leg.
This 8th Leg was pretty good. For one thing, we got one and a half Legs in Hong Kong! How crazy is that. Usually it’s just one and done. But it was refreshing to see the teams spending a bit longer in Hong Kong. They could’ve had a full 2nd Leg in Hong Kong, to be honest. Instead of splitting it with Sydney.
But anyway, let start at the beginning. We got another one of those moments where teams had a pretty good option on whether to go for the Fast Forward as they waited for the Hours of Operation. Not sure if the Fast Forward would’ve given them enough time to leave Hong Kong early for Sydney. But it’s possible.
The several Route Markers at the beginning were good. You don’t see that these days.
And the Detour was also a balanced pair of tasks as well. Good tasks to have in the morning too.
The episode was definitely made a lot more interesting thanks to the whole storyline about Oswald & Danny having some kind of magic powers that gets them where they need to be without breaking a sweat. And it would seem that way to the other teams. But in the latter half of the hour, it was exactly like that. They got to go shopping while their travel agent got them the best flights AND even got them a nice ride to the airport.
Meanwhile, the Road Block in Sydney was pretty great. First, we don’t usually have teams running around in the rain. So that is good. But it was a good task that needed teams to interact with locals and figure out clues. The bit about only returning to your partner once the clue tells them to was another layer to it.
Even by season two, teams already knew the formula. A Road Block was one simple task and then go back to your partner. Or them knowing when Non-Eliminations would be. But it was also interesting how the teams knew to redo the task on their own.
But the 2nd?! Of 4 Non-Eliminations? This is one of the things that definitely, thankfully, has changed over the years. Spreading out the Non-Eliminations across the 12 Legs instead of having them all at the end is definitely better.
Overall, a pretty good Leg and an exciting episode. I think one of the better hours of the season
My Subjective Team Rankings
At first I was like, what are Oswald & Danny doing? I felt like them just walking around and going to the Mandarin Oriental, of all places, just to get directions was the height of arrogance and laziness. Like, we get you love to be pampered and stuff. But I felt like this was too much. Then they turned things around. Their relaxed nature actually helped them get ahead in the end. AND they got to enjoy their time in Hong Kong too. The fact that the other teams think they just snap their fingers and get to where they need to be is hilarious. And by the time they won the Leg, I was applauding their unorthodox style of Racing lol
Chris & Alex, meanwhile, had a solid Leg. No problems. Just getting the job done and without the help of any other teams. Their unwitting influence on the decline of Tara & Wil‘s relationship is fascinating though. This Leg really starts the downfall of the once-happy couple. And I already know the next Leg will yield one of the most iconic lines of TAR courtesy of them.
Blake & Paige being young and a bit naïve definitely came out in this Leg. They can be nice bumpkins, but at the same time, we know they (especially Blake) can be cutthroat and unforgiving as well. It’s a real interesting dynamic.
Gary & Dave, meanwhile, definitely have overstayed their welcome. Or at least, have overplayed their shtick. They were the most grating they’ve been this Leg. The jokes and asides just felt so forced and off. It wasn’t enjoyable anymore.
Tara: “We’re morons! We’re just morons!”
Danny: “Don’t you feel silly?”
Gary: “I’m booking tickets so shut up!”
Blake: “David and Gary are definitely the ugliest Americans.”