Sunday’s episode of The Amazing Race saw the six remaining teams leave India and head to the land that produced two of the biggest badasses in history – Mozart and The Terminator. Willkommen in Österreich! That’s “Welcome to Austria!” for those who never took German or who are too lazy to use Google Translate.
Five teams boarded an early flight route to Vienna, Austria, while the cowboys decided to take a later flight route that had fewer layovers, believing that less layovers was the safer option. Unfortunately for the Cowboys, there were no heart attacks or engine hiccups on the earlier flight route, so they were dead last upon arrival.
When the teams landed, they were asked to jump into a – surprise, surprise – Ford Focus and drive in reverse to retrieve the next clue. The letters on the ground spelled out Schloss Schallaburg, which, based on the sheer number of consonants, proved to be a long reverse out of the parking garage. Well at least the teams weren’t in Iceland, because they would still be in reverse.
The teams drove off to Schloss Schallaburg castle, where a nice lady in a pointy hat gave them a huge dusty book with directions to the national library in Vienna, where they picked up the clue to the Detour challenge.
The descriptions of the Detour challenges were deceptive: “Quick and Easy Meal” and “Long Hard Walk.” Quick and Easy Meal required the teams to pick up a weinerschnitzel and a chocolate cake, bring it to a gondola on the Ferris wheel featured in The Third Man, and scarf everything down during one 12-minute rotation. The Long Hard Walk required the teams to carry a psychotherapist’s couch a mile to the University of Vienna, home base of Sigmund Freud. Mmm, schnitzel and chocolate. Sounds tasty. A no brainer, right? Wrong.
The Detour should have been called Feed the Id or Feed the Ego, as the Long Hard Walk appealed to the ego in that it was a realistic way to benefit the id’s drive in the long run. On the other hand, the Quick and Easy Meal appealed purely to the id, in this case the basic drive encapsulated by Fat Bastard’s famous quote in Austin Powers – The Spy who Shagged Me: “Get in my belly!” When a grown adult seeks only to feed the id, it can only lead to grief and destruction – or in this case, indigestion and having to carry a large piece of furniture a mile while suffering from food coma. None of the teams that attempted Quick and Easy Meal – Kisha and Jen, Gary and Mallory, Zev and Justin – were able to complete it. There was simply too much schnitzel and sweets, and all three teams, full of food and failure, raced off to complete The Long Hard Walk instead.
Next, the teams were off to Salzburg, where the next challenge required one team member from each team to dress up like a penguin with a top hat and clean a chimney with a heavy, bulbous contraption. The bickering between Kent and Vyxsin went from Goth to Emo to Screamo on the way to Salzburg, with Vyxsin finally yelling at Kent, “I cannot deal with your psycho behavior!” This is, of course, the puppet calling the muppet pink, as Vyxsin’s behavior over the course of the season has been less than even keeled. Recall the epic meltdown at Spruce Meadow in China and the perplexing leap into the polluted Ganges River in India?
The Globetrotters finished the chimney sweep challenge first but got lost on the way to the pit stop, the real Von Trapp family home, allowing Zev and Justin to come in first. Each would receive a 2012 Ford Focus. Hello, product placement! Well, I suppose a new car is much better than receiving 2012 bottles of Snapple. The Squabbling Goths came in third and decided to make up by hugging it out. Kisha and Jen came in fourth, and the Cowboys came in fifth. Gary and Mallory rolled up last to Villa Trapp, but the hills were alive with the sound of benevolent clucks from merciful television producers, because Herr Phil told them that this leg was a non-elimination round. Gary and Mallory, I guess it isn’t time to say “adieu, adieu” to yieu and yieu just yet.
This brings us to the end of episode eight. So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, good night!