Romo's World: The Amazing Race Genius

So my column is really late. I know but I have a good excuse. It was St. Patrick’s week after all. Yeah I know most people just give it a day but I am not most people. No sadly I did not spend the whole week drinking green beer and dancing like Michael Flatley but I did have fun on Thursday. Ok it’s not much of an excuse but it is all you are gonna get.

Lately most of my TV watching has revolved around college basketball but because I am so dedicated to my good readers I have done my best to watch other things than sports on TV.

The Amazing Race

Boston Rob is a genius. Unlike what fellow IP writer Cheri Widowski would have you believe Rob is no villain. Unlike every other racer he understands the rules and uses them to his advantage.

Romber have so far been the reason to watch this season. Some people will have you believe that it is not fair for Romber to be on their third reality show. To them I say good TV is good TV. I would rather have 10 “all-stars” on the Amazing Race than 10 crappy teams.

I rarely if ever watch Fear Factor, mostly because I do not find it entertaining but also because Joe Rogan is annoying. The few times I have watched it was because of the gimmick episodes. The one where they brought on swimsuit models pretty much ensured every male from 10-90 would watch, I did not buck the trend. The last time I watched the show had brought on former reality stars. I think Omorosa (Apprentice), Ethan and Jenna (Survivor) and that guy from the Bachelor, Ryan I think, who got married on TV.

Casting makes Reality TV. If the best cast involves celebrities, former reality stars or whomever I do not care as long they pick the best people. No one who has watched this season of The Amazing Race can possibly say that Romber have not been a great addition to the cast.

Let us look at the rest of the cast.

Ryan and Chuck. Sadly we never really got to know them. They seemed to have a lot of potential to entertain and amuse but not much chance of actually winning.

The Barbies. As much as I love eye candy it does not work on The Amazing Race. This type of team is pretty much a waste of a valuable spot. Not only do they have no chance of sticking around very long but these teams really aren’t entertaining to watch regardless of the eye candy factor. It’s not like Survivor where the girls can just sun in bikinis or take off their clothes for peanut butter and chocolate.

The Barbies part 2, Debbie and Bianca. This all-girl team had more potential than Megan and Heidi. Sadly they proved once again that women lack common sense and logic. Driving two hours in the wrong direction is one thing. Not realizing that, “Hey aren’t we supposed to be crossing the Andes, not in flatlands near the coast?” And they say men never ask for directions? Ok perhaps I am being a bit harsh but I really had high hopes for this teams. Plus the redhead was REALLY hot and I did not want to see her gone so early.

Brian and Greg. There must be better brother duos out there than these two. They aren’t THAT bad but there is nothing about them that make me watch the show.

Lynn and Alex. Other than the fact they are pretty much furthering every stereotype “Red America” has of homosexual men this is a good duo. They have made me laugh more than any other team, “We like taking up the rear”, “We like shoes,” and so on. So far I consider this a good choice.

Meredith and Gretchen. Much the same as Brian and Greg I feel like there is a better duo of similar proportions. This team isn’t bad but everyone knows they have no chance of winning. They have done nothing to really set them apart from any other older people duo in the past. I hope one day the producers find an older duo who really can compete.

Ray and Deana. They have not been given too much airtime but I will chalk this up in the “Yeah” category. When they have been on screen I see the potential for entertainment. The fact they allied with Romber shows they are smart. I do not like how the producers are trying to pigeon-hole Ray as the next Jonathan.

Ron and Kelly. For a team that has so much potential, and yes they are contenders to win it all, they are incredibly boring. Nice, yes, exciting, no. But getting a former POW is a coup for the producers so I have to give them credit for that.

Susan and Patrick. A very underrated duo who have provided a great deal of entertainment so far. Patrick is a spoiled brat who acts like a four year old. His mother has more guts and cahones in her little finger than her son. I am still hoping for Patrick to hook up with one of Lynn and Alex. Now THAT would be good TV.

Uchenna and Joyce. Another solid pick by the producers. Uchenna proved that he is an eating machine last week, always a good skill to have in the race. I like their motivation, so they can afford to try and have kids.

So that means I give 4 teams a positive grade. I will be generous and put it at 4.5, giving the half point for Debbie and Bianca. So without Romber that means less than half the teams provide entertainment and are good choices. Take away Romber and this season is not as entertaining. With the improvement of House I may have demoted TAR to taping of the west coast feed.

Now to all the calls of the villainy of Rob Mariano himself. What has he really done? Has he broken the rules? No! Had he actually broken any rules he would have been punished. Did he make any promises to any of the teams to “play fair”? Of course not, and why would he?

Hey if Rob finds an edge, such as when he found the bus ride that would arrive earlier, why would he share it with every other team? Any person who really wants to win should to everything to advance themselves and slow down the others. Bribing that security guard was brilliant. So yeah he got caught and that may backfire but none of those teams were ever going to help Romber. All of the teams were gunning for Rob anyway.

If Rob had come out and played the game cleanly it wouldn’t have mattered. All of the teams would still hate Romber and do whatever they can to stop them from winning. If Rob was not being such a villain the show would also be not as exciting.

Tell me the bribe to get the bus driver not to open the back door was not brilliant. Even if perhaps it did not impact the end result you never know when seconds will count so you have to take every advantage you can get. The people who would complain about this tactic are those who did not think of it first.

Rob one uped himself this past week. He quit the challenge and took a four hour penalty. An incredibly dangerous move that worked out perfectly.

After seeing what happened to those two nice Mormon girls in the hay bailing challenge I asked myself, “What would happen if you quit?”

When I found out that it was a four hour penalty, Hayden quit the lock challenge, I thought why don’t people quit more often?

Had the Mormon girl, Lena I think, I can’t remember, quit the hay bailing challenge she could have easily not finished last. Some challenges do take people over four hours to complete. You just have to be able to judge which challenges they are. Last week Rob knew that he could not do the eating challenge let alone do it in four hours.

To top off his brilliance Rob convinced two other teams to quit. While this was mostly done to ensure Romber would not finish last it did end up saving those teams from elimination. Who is to say if Deana or Meredith could have finished that meal in time to save them from elimination?

As Phil told Rob when they arrived, “That was unprecedented!”

This is the seventh Race and yet no other team seems to have completely read and understand the rules. Blindly following orders and not trying to figure out how to get around them is just stupid.

Rob has added an element to TAR that has been sadly missing from past editions: creativity. So for that alone I say put Boston Rob in whatever reality show he wants to be on as many times as he wants to be in them because I know I will be watching them.

Oh and since I have not talked much about Amber there is nothing wrong with allowing Rob to feel or even be in control. We all know that like in every relationship the woman controls things behind closed doors. So Amber just keep doing what you are doing as well.

Lastly I am going to create my dream all-star teams of former reality stars.

Rudy and Richard

Bring back the duo from the original Survivor and see if they can race around the world together. Ok we know it will be a dismal failure but it would be fun to watch.

Elisabeth and Tim Hasselbeck

Survivor 2 aka Outback cutie Elisabeth has never been toped in my books. So I say bring her and her football playing husband (ok he is not a reality star but he plays for the Washington Redskins and they are my team so I am stretching the rules just like Boston Rob would.)

Johnny Fairplay and Rupert

Ok these two hated each other at the end but tell me you don’t want to see these two back on TV. Fairplay would be awesome on the race and Rupert well he would be great on eating challenges. This team would probably kill each other but it would be fun to watch.

Trista and Ryan

The only couple to actually stay together from The Bachelor/ette series. Let’s see how they do racing around the world together. Will Ryan ever grow a backbone and stand up to Trista? Tune in to find out.

Lex and Angie

The tattoo team! Even though these two probably do not know each other they seem like the perfect duo. I was tempted to put Lex with Ethan but I like this pairing better. Lex is conniving, smart, athletic and paranoid. Plus he has the drive to win. Angie proved her physical toughness in the challenges this year. Imagine Lex and Angie going against Rob and Amber in a tag-team match up. Tell me people wouldn’t pay $29.95 on PPV to see Lex try and get his revenge on Rob or Angie just being Angie and trying to beat up Amber.

Brian Heidik and whomever he wants

An underrated Survivor winner who should have been on All-Stars. The dude is a used-car salesman/porn star. If that does not convince he would be great on TAR nothing will.

Jenna and Heidi

The duo who stripped for chocolate and peanut butter can be on my TV show any day they want. I mean every cab driver around the world will probably just let them ride for free if he gets a little show. That gives them a major advantage over every other team.

Drew and Cowboy

This pair made it to the final two of the last edition of Big Brother. Ok I chose them more because Cowboy made me laugh. Part of the deal would be that he HAS to wear that hat everywhere. Plus I only thought it fair I had some male eye candy, Drew, to compensate for all the female eye candy I have on so far.

Colleen and Greg

The original Survivor couple, even though rumours have it they never actually hooked up and Greg messed around with Jenna instead. These two don’t really have that killer instinct. Even so they would be entertaining. Colleen is super cute, that’s all I really need to convince me of her. I liked how Greg pretty much made Survivor 1 a “pick a number game.” He seemed to relish sticking it to Jeff Probst and CBS in general. I say give him another chance. Which leads me to my last choice.

Jeff Probst and Julie Berry

The newest Survivor couple! Tell me it would not be great to see Jeff actually competing. I loved seeing him on Celebrity Blackjack He got so competitive and thinks he is smarter than everyone else. I say prove it. Plus imagine how great it would be for Phil to Philiminate Probst, “That’s what you get for taking my job, bitch!”

SirLinksalot: Amazing Race


Bonus Team

Boston Rob and Murtz Jaffer

Murtz and Rob can hit all the Cougars all over the world. Rob can get them warmed up and Murtz can finish them off. Just like Romber Rob would be in charge in this pairing. Murtz’s inside knowledge of every past reality star would help him mess with the heads of every other person in the race. This could be the most evil duo since George Dubya and Dick Chaney.

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