The Wife:

That is an excellent question, Kelly and Christy, one I have to ask myself every day in an alternate universe where I a. wear sports bras on a regular basis and b. hang them on ledges to dry. I mean, I hate Starr, too, but I sincerely doubt that she had time to break into your room without you noticing and knock a sports bra off the ledge. Hey, let’s even say that Starr and her brother were in the room next to you and they thought to themselves, “Hey, let’s knock them thar sports bras off that thar ledge with this here makeshift poking device we created from coat hangers and Blong candy.” That would take a lot more physical ingenuity than either Starr or Nick could come up with. They’re much better at mental scheming.

Like the mental scheming they’ve pulled on me as I realized only a few hours ago that I had been calling Starr’s brother Ryan instead of Nick. You know, like Ryan Starr from American Idol season 1. Or from The Surreal Life. I do not know why my brain did that. But I think this does not bode well for Nick, as he is clearly not interesting enough to make me remember his real name. Bad news bears.

In any case, Kelly and Christy blaming Nick and Starr for the Great Sports Bra incident is yet more evidence piling up against them in the Reasons They Are Divorced category: extremely paranoid and quick to lay blame for blameless things. (You know who I think pushed the sports bra off the ledge? The fucking wind.)

The sports bra, my friends, is blowin in the wind . . .

The sports bra, my friends, is blowin' in the wind . . .

Unsolved Sports Bra Mysteries aside, actual racing happened, too. The teams had to fly from Fortelaza, Brazil to La Paz, Bolivia where they would have to adjust to the 13K altitude and find the statue of Simone Bolivar. Once there, they would wait for the local paper to be delivered so they could find their next clue in the classifieds. Once found, the clue directed teams to Naravez Hat Shop in Plaza Morito, where they would have to purchase a traditional Andean chapeau.

The Frat Boys found the ad first, but Terrence and Sarah beat them to the hat shop when their cab got caught in traffic. Sarah, like her boyfriend Terrence, gave us our second TAR utterance regarding the status of friendship on reality television when she declared that this race was not a popularity contest. That, to me, translates to: “I’m not here to make friends.”

Once the teams purchased their hats, they were given their Detour for this leg of the race. In Musical March, teams had to travel between plazas on foot to collect musicians and return the 5 piece marching band to their bandleader, located elsewhere in the city. In Bumpy Ride, the teams had to travel through the city on rickety-ass handmade wooden bicycles. At the end of their Detour, teams were given the option to U-Turn another team.

Unfortunately for this leg of the race, my least favorite Divorcees were not the ones having trouble reading directions. Terrence the Almighty Douchenozzle and His Browbeaten Girlfriend Sarah misread that both challenges had to be done entirely on foot, but caught their mistake in time and went back to the hat shop to correct their mistake. Geeks Mark and Bill also missed that their challenges had to be completed on foot, but didn’t catch their mistake until they were on the way to the Pit Stop at the end of the race. Mark and Bill doomed themselves right there by not catching their mistake in time, but they also doomed themselves by being nice guys and not taking the time to U-Turn another team, which would have bought them more than enough time to keep them in the race.

I cant tell if this looks fun or not. But the hats are definitely hot.

I can't tell if this looks fun or not. But the hats are definitely hot.

After completing the Detour, teams taxied to Los Titanos Del Ring, where the most interesting challenge this season took place. At this Road Block, one member from each team had to learn wrestling moves from the toughest broads in the Andes, the Fighting Cholitas. Each racer learned 6 moves in a choreographed routine from their Cholita and had to perform it perfectly or be doomed to repeat it until they got it right. The luchador outfits the racers had to wear were my favorite part of the race so far, aside from the chicken feather helmets they had to wear on the wooden bikes and, of course, Blong candy.

This is where Mark and Bill truly experienced their downfall, as Geek Mark attempted to enter the ring in his Geek physical state and at such an altitude. Mark made mistakes in the ring on his first attempt, and had to return to training, only to fail a second time and be put on hits of oxygen before finally getting the routine right on his third attempt. I felt so bad for him, for at that point I knew they were not going to finish this week’s race anywhere near King of the Lab status.

Finally! A place where beating up girls is sanctioned!

Finally! A place where beating up girls is sanctioned!

After the luchador bout, teams had to taxi to the Pit Stop at Mirador el Monticulo. Not surprisingly, Ken and Tina came in first place and this time snagged themselves a week in Cabo San Lucas as a prize. Mother and son team Toni and Dallas came in second, followed by Terrence the Almighty Douchenozzle and His Browbeaten Girlfriend Sarah, who are not here to make friends at all. Amazingly, Team Elle Woods came in fourth place followed by Aja and Ty, who were stalled for a bit with a busted cab. A slightly less diabolical Nick and Starr came in sixth this week, followed by Team AEPi. Mark and Bill arrived thereafter and were forced to wait out their 30-minute penalty as the Divorcees arrived to edge my beloved geeks out of the race.

Adieu, my friends from Comic-Con. You were Phileminated far too soon. Too soon.

The Husband:

I’m honestly surprised at the ouster of Geeks Mark and Bill. Not because they messed up the road block (which they did) and that they sometimes didn’t have enough of a driving force (which they did not), because both of those are true. But misreading a clue in the sense that it would incur a penalty is something, without doing any research, I can only remember happening four other times. Maybe five. One was when a team accidentally skipped an entire challenge. A couple where the team forgot to hold onto their cards and needed to return for them. One (I think it was in Spain) where two young soccer moms took a taxi to a Pit Stop when the clue specifically demanded that they walk. (And I don’t think it was referred to as “on foot” in that early season, but literally “walk to the fucking Pit Stop, you morons.”)

(I think that winners and Bay Area Hippies BJ & Tyler incurred their own 30-minute penalty near the end of their season, but I could be getting that wrong.)

You would think that this many seasons into TAR that even though editing takes it out, the teams read the clues through and through before they act, because on a show like this, you cannot make any mistakes. This is why I get angry at jury members on Survivor who in their turn get angry at other contestants who fucked them over and got them voted off the island/compound/fucking prairie, because if they signed up for the show, then they’ve freakin’ watched the show and know that getting fucked over is exactly what they’re signing up for. Seriously, Mark and Bill, you missed two words and it really messed you up.

The U-Turn is another point of contention, because while it is too early in the competition for most teams to begin turning on each other – save for Nick and Starr trying to convince Aja and Ty to U-Turn the Divorcees – we know now that it’s finally never really too early. Niceness isn’t going to get you too far on TAR, because while banding with another team may help you a couple times, it’s not worth the energy you would be wasting on loyalty as opposed to, say, just going forth and doing the damned best you can. The Geeks, after having failed twice already at the wrestling challenge, should have known that they had to be late in the team lineup and that in order to survive, they would have to use their U-Turn, even if it meant being unable to do it later in the competition. They wouldn’t have known with 100% certainty as to which team was behind them, sure, but they saw the Divorcees behind them at the wrestling arena and should have turned ruthless.

TAR knows no mercy, nosiree.