Recap: The Amazing Race 34, Episode 4 – Everyone’s an Artist
Glenda & Lumumba quickly hurry to try and catch up to the other teams who are driving to the Villa Bardini in Florence. Marcus & Michael maintain their slim lead as they arrive just minutes before Emily & Molly.
They open the next clue revealing the Road Block: Who wants a chiseled body? For this Road Block, teams must use provided tools to chisel out a sculpture hidden inside a block. Marcus and Molly get started. Initially, Marcus thinks he actually has to carve out a sculpture. But Molly is able to figure out that she just has to chisel off the outer plaster to reveal the sculpture inside. Michelle is next to arrive and start, followed by Sharik who has tried to avoid doing any Road Blocks so far because of her anxiety. Abby and Mattie arrive and start as well.
After getting lost, Aubrey and David arrive with Aubrey doing the Road Block. Derek gets a chance to finally do a real Road Block. Glenda & Lumumba arrive before Rich & Dom. Lumumba chooses to do the Road Block.
Marcus and Molly ask for a check. But they have damaged the sculpture so they have to fix it with fresh plaster. After doing so, Molly is first to get the thumbs up.
The twins open the next clue revealing the Detour: Eye for Fashion or Window of Opportunity. In Eye for Fashion, teams must find three fashion shoot locations and memorize details of each model’s outfit. They must then use sketches to identify the correct outfits and actually match them with their corresponding locations. In Window of Opportunity, teams must find three of 150 windows scattered around the city originally used to stop the outbreak of the bubonic plague and recently, COVID, by having people pick up orders of necessities through them. Teams must pick up Tuscan soup, cured meats and biscotti and deliver it to a couple waiting al fresco to get the next clue.
Both sibling teams choose the fashion Detour.
As Marcus & Michael leave, Rich & Dom arrive. Dom decides to do the Road Block. But seeing everyone else’s sculptures, she thinks she has to actually carve it out herself and she doesn’t think she will be able to do it. She tells Dom she would rather take a penalty. But Rich tries to encourage her and asks her to give him 15 minutes to pretend she is a sculptor and give it a try. After a few minutes, Dom re-reads her clue and realizes what she actually has to do.
Sharik asks for a check, but gets the thumbs down. Aubrey, Michelle, Abby and Mattie get the thumbs up though, followed by Derek. Quinton & Mattie and Luis & Michelle decide to work together as they both choose the windows. Abby & Will also choose the windows, but want to run their own Race.
Sharik grows a bit frustrated, but she finally gets her sculpture approved. As they walk to the Detour, Sharik feels like she doesn’t want to do this anymore. “I want to go home,” she says even as Linton tries to encourage her. “We’re not quitters,” Linton says.
Glenda & Lumumba are next to leave the Road Block, leaving Rich & Dom still in last. Dom begins to get emotional.
Meanwhile, the sibling teams run to the sketchbooks and begin matching things up. They both ask for a check. But only Emily & Molly get the thumbs up. They can now make their way on foot to the Pit Stop at Piazza Ognissanti.
Emily & Molly claim their first Leg win as well as enough Expedia points for a five-night stay in Sydney. Marcus & Michael have to settle for 2nd.
As the other teams are busy with the Detour, Sharik continues to repeat that she is just over it all. Abby & Will deliver their food, as do Quinton & Mattie and Luis & Michelle. Aubrey & David get the thumbs up with their sketches. All teams head to the Pit Stop.
Abby & Will are Team #3. Luis & Michelle and Quinton & Mattie are 4th and 5th. Aubrey & David are 6th. Derek & Claire make their delivery and check-in at the Pit Stop as Team #7.
Glenda & Lumumba, who were last at the Mega Leg midpoint, finish the Mega Leg as Team #8.
It’s down to the last two teams. Linton tells Sharik that he understands she is tired. She says she’s not tired, she’s just done with the Race. Rich & Dom get to the sketches, but get the thumbs down on their first attempt. They decide to go back to the shoot locations to double check and realize their mistakes.
As Rich & Dom return to the sketches, Linton & Sharik arrive and deliver their food. They walk to the Pit Stop. Rich & Dom get the thumbs up and they begin running.
Linton & Sharik get to the Mat as Team #9. Sharik again says she wants to go home to New York because her arms hurt. She asks Phil if he’s ever chiseled anything:
— DryedMangoez (@dryedmangoez) October 14, 2022
Phil gives her a choice. Will she keep Racing or will she go home. Sharik asks her father what he wants and of course he wants to stay. Sharik says fine, she’ll keep Racing. But strictly for her father only.
That means Rich & Dom are last and eliminated. They are celebrating their 3rd anniversary today and Phil says it is very meaningful since they went through a difficult day together, but their relationship is stronger than ever.
This was a really great episode. Definitely the best of the four so far this season. But it’s also the most “normal” Leg of TAR I’ve seen in a long time. It was a lot of fun and very refreshing. It also helps that the tasks were pretty great. And all the teams surprisingly delivered as well. Everything just came together. Which is a major accomplishment for TAR in the present day.
Now, my one complaint first though would be that it would’ve been nice to have one extra task in this episode. Even though yes, this is still technically all Leg 3. An extra task would’ve made a great episode even better I think. If only because they did spend a little more time than needed with the Road Block.
Which! The Road Block was actually so good. It was so creative and different. It’s not some recycled or modified version of a typical TAR task. And seeing some teams be horrified at the fact that they might have to chisel out an actual sculpture on their own was great. I assume the clue was vague enough that they didn’t know. So that is also great to see. Sometimes, modern TAR likes to spell things out. Just like the fact that they told teams this was a Mega Leg before it even started.
The Detour was also great. For one, teams were running around Florence and some of the city’s most iconic locations too. Again, very refreshing and so nice to see today. The fashion Detour was a good memorization task. And like the Road Block, it seems as if the clue did not tell teams they needed to memorize the locations? Tricky! I like it!
The window side of the Detour was also fascinating to watch. It’s great to see something, like, a historic part of the city be used or related to in the COVID Era. It’s really a great insight into different experiences around the world during these last few years. The task and connection to COVID was done very naturally too. So it was great to watch.
Elsewhere, editing was also on point this episode. That’s very shocking to me because editing has been a bit all over the place in recent seasons. So again, everything really came together this episode. Well-designed “Leg,” exciting competition, good stuff from the teams. I loved it.
So happy for Emily & Molly and their win! How exciting for them, but even more exciting for me as a fan of theirs. I hope they can continue and maintain this great momentum to the end.
Also so happy for Glenda & Lumumba! I was a little worried for them. But it was great to watch them really step up and fight to stay in.
Derek & Claire were certainly the big names in the first three episodes. But they took a backseat this episode and that’s perfectly fine since we pretty much know who Derek & Claire are. That allowed other teams to step into the spotlight a little more.
I can finally tell the couple teams apart now! lol First, it was so nice to hear Abby & Will say they want to run their own Race. YES PLEASE! That immediately makes me want to root for them. Lol
Seeing Luis & Michelle and Quinton & Mattie work together at the Detour was okay though. That’s not alliance behavior. That was “working together” behavior. They both still had to walk to the locations and collect the food on their own, even if they did it together. That should be the extent of helping one another. Not delivering the food then taking it back from the couple and handing to another team to then deliver as their own. (*COUGHLOUDLY*TAR Australia*COUGHLOUDLY*)
I couldn’t get a good read on Luis’ personality in the first few episodes even though I did notice some of his attempts at humor. I think the first moment where his humor and personality really landed well was at the Detour when he wanted to eat the meats. Lol I thought he was amusing. I’d like to see more of that, I think.
Aubrey & David, meanwhile, are like the solid, “nice” team. I don’t even know how to describe them. But for me, they distinguished themselves from the other teams. So that’s a positive for them as “characters.”
Marcus & Michael are definitely still the top contenders so far. But we’ll see if they can maintain their good Racing. I think they definitely can.
I was shocked by Linton & Sharik this episode. Like, have I not noticed Sharik’s personality in the first three? It was really a big surprise to see her acting like that this episode. And honestly, if she wanted to go, then she should’ve just gone. On one hand, it’s annoying to have someone like that get this opportunity. On the other, it’s quite hilarious to watch her feel like she is being tortured getting a trip around the world. Also, I definitely want Linton to do well and get the opportunity. So maybe Linton could Race by himself. It’s happened on other TARs before! lol I think he might even do better on his own. And so for that odd dynamic, I wouldn’t mind seeing them last longer on the Race. Even though I cringe with Sharik’s whiny attitude.
Finally, Rich & Dom didn’t seem long for the Race. Especially Dom. As we saw this episode, she can get frustrated easily. So it would’ve only been a matter of time before she and Rich just couldn’t pick themselves up at some difficult point. They were definitely an interesting dynamic to watch. But it was their time to go.