Race Around the World…(Commentary on The Amazing Race from Jonathan Baker and Steve Coogan)

The Amazing Illusion

Magician Wayne Kawamoto defines an illusion as: “Any magical effect that to the spectator looks impossible, but is accomplished through real-world means. Illusion is often applied to the large stage magic tricks-the kinds with boxes where people are made to disappear, sawed in half, levitated and more.”

How about the editing in The Amazing Race? Could the editing be considered a large scale magic trick?

After all, since what ended up being the first of a two-part episode of The Amazing Race was remarkably boring, the viewers had a good chance to check out the players a little more and the dialogue between them all.

And by watching, you could draw the conclusion that Rob and Amber are the dirtiest players in the history of The Amazing Race.

Or could you? Jonathan and I talked about it and couldn’t really tell. Was it the editing?

After all, the way Lynn and Alex constantly behave toward and scheme against Rob and Amber, you’d think that the happy Survivor couple were sent by Lucifer himself to ruin the game for all those involved. Lynn and Alex constantly explain practically gritting their teeth in disdain how much they hate Rob and Amber. They see themselves as the ultimate rivals to Rob and Amber (even though Rob and Amber don’t care about them at all).

Their actions at the airport in Botswana, basically pulling Uchenna and Joyce and Meredith and Gretchen aside and calling their magical travel agent to get them to India sooner couldn’t have drawn the line in the sand any clearer. Meredith even asked Lynn why they were doing what they were doing (since Lynn and Alex were doing all the work in getting the tickets). Lynn’s response was simple:

“Because we want you in the finals with us,” he said.

Meanwhile, Rob and Amber worked with Ron and Kelly to get their own tickets and pretty much minded their own business in the process. Sure, he threw his own jab in about not wanting the other teams to get their tickets, but are they really as bad as Lynn and Alex are making them out to be? If you believe them and the editing in their favor, then that’s 100 percent true.

Or is it? Maybe it’s just an illusion…

What have Rob and Amber done over the last few weeks that have made them such “dirty” players? Sure, there were a couple of incidents at the beginning of the race that might be construed as “dirty.” But as Jonathan noted, they really just “think outside of the box” where most of the other teams are stuck inside that box…locked with a pad lock. They simply follow the rules of the game…there just isn’t that many rules the players have to follow exactly.

But look at the last few weeks. They are constantly finishing first or second in these legs of the race and are just doing their thing in the process. They are remaining focused, calm, cool and are just running a good race to this point.

Rob and Amber haven’t really needed to resort to any sort of “dirty tricks” (or more accurately “thinking out of the box”) to get to where they have. The other teams appear to have glaring weaknesses that hold them back. After all, Uchenna and Joyce don’t follow directions well; Ron and Kelly bicker a bit too much and that slight loss of focus slows them down; Meredith and Gretchen move as fast as they can, but that isn’t very fast; Lynn and Alex appear to get too caught up in the drama of the race and often worry about others instead of themselves.

So, Rob and Amber have really run a “clean” game because they haven’t had to do anything else.

Or have they? Maybe it’s one of those magical (editing) effects?

Maybe some of Rob’s tricks haven’t really popped up in the editing. Maybe he’s adapted such a slick strategy from his past reality TV days, that not only are the other teams not picking up on it, it’s not really showing up in the eyes of those producing and editing.

Also consider that as this thing goes on further to the end, Rob will surely pull some tricks out of his sleeve and he definitely won’t be afraid to use them. So, it might appear that Rob has played a game void of the tactics that might be considered “questionable” at best before, but that could certainly change.

Or will it? It’s hard to really know what’s real and what’s an illusion.

Like Phil Keoghan for example…

Wasn’t it weird to see him tell Rob and Amber: “I have your next clue…” instead of saying “You’re Team Number 1!” to them?

Was it an illusion?

Was Phil a hologram?

Did we see it right?

Did he really say that they were going to keep on racing?

To be Continued…

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Where were Jonathan and Victoria last week? Check out JonathanBakerandVictoriaFuller.com to find out. You WON’T be disappointed…In fact, I’m sure you’ll be quite pleased you checked it out!

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