Saturday, March 03, 2007

TAR Stars: Frats All, Folks

Q. What's worse that watching one of your favorite teams become the first team eliminated?

A. Watching one of your favorite teams get eliminated in one extremely painful episode.

Back during TAR1, Kevin & Drew were the "it" team of the season. Yeah, Rob & Brennan seemed nice, and Frank & Margarita's relationship made for compelling drama, but the Frats were funny, savy and successful. Their feud with Team Guido felt like a battle between good and evil, right up until their final fight in the streets of Beijing, where the Guidos pulled victory from the jaws of defeat. At that time, TAR fans figured there couldn't be a worse elimination scene.

Cut to last Sunday. Drew had fallen down in the previous leg. He suffered altitude sickness, requiring oxygen treatment during the twelve-hour eat/sleep/mingle period. There was a report that Drew had been hurt in his job as a court officer when he got involved in a brawl. So there he is at the pit stop mat, walking away from Phil as the host was ready to drop the elimination boot. All Drew wanted was something to cover his head. Given the two legs he and Kevin had run, he might have wanted a paper bag instead.

In the last few weeks, the TAR-based threads on Television Without Pity's forums have been peppered with cries of "Why did they go on the show if Drew wasn't healthy?" and "I never saw the first season...what did people see in these jokers?" I can forgive those posters...TAR1 was a great time, and I can't recommend getting the DVD enough, even if it means waiting until it was half-off like I did. But as the Frats tried to claw their way to the middle of an increasingly dysfunctional pack, they shot themselves in the foot. The worst part was Kevin driving 40 kilometers per hour. That wasn't so bad, but they had missed the sign saying that they could increase their speed. While other teams whizzed past them, the Frats were sizing them up for time penalties. The worst part was the editors going back to a "50 kph" sign over and over. It's a tact used to make teams look stupid, and it's like hitting a bad puppy with a rolled-up newspaper.'s the Frats getting smacked. That just feels wrong to me. I'm biased as hell towards the Frats, so I can never be impartial.

Since I hate myself, I watched Lynn & Alex's commentary on Reality Remix. They were outraged...OUTRAGED!...that Drew walked away. Along with host Kennedy (yeah, she's still around), they bayed for Drew to show some respect. At the end of the segment, they pointed out how Kevin & Drew cheated on the Roadblock. "When you cheat and lose," one of them snarked, "you suck!" I agree, but I have a few corrections:

1. The Roadblock was performed by Kevin, not Kevin & Drew.

2. Kevin didn't intentionally cheat...when Mary gave her answer to the guy handing out the clues, she actually said the correct answer out loud. The thing with Mary is that neither she nor husband David are smart Racers. While I argue with the notion that they are to TAR what Rupert Boneham was to Survivor, I agree that these two should never have been invited back.

3. Lynn & Alex couldn't carry Drew's jock. They're scumbags. They all but accused Amber of having anorexia, and now they're praising Ramber's racing skills. Are they hypocrites, or are they following orders since Ramber has a show on Fox Reality? They gave shit to the lovely organizers of TARCon. And the worst offense? I heard they made fun of Carissa Gaghan trying to hold back the tears when her family got eliminated in TAR8. And now they're misrepresenting what happened just to be vicious. I'd tell them both to go to hell, but since they're on Fox Reality, I'd say they're already there.

Wow...I guess I disagreed with the analysis after all.

I have the right to be cranky. Not only did I see another nice team go, but now Danielle is the only Staten Islander left...and she didn't deserve to be running in the first place. Also, David & Mary continue to suck, Mirna is back to being a shrill harpy, and even Charla had a huge fit. Over what? I don't remember. All I remember was they were following a cab, Dustin & Kandice were following them, and next thing I know, Charla and Mirna are screaming at the cabbie and genuflecting like crazy. If they're not out in the next two episodes, I will be shocked.

And yes, freakin' Ramber won another leg...I think they're the first team to win the first two legs. On the bright side, Oswald & Danny finished a strong second again. A few weeks ago, I pointed out how players who won all-star editions of Big Brother and Survivor hailed from the second seasons of their respective shows. Now chew on this: Kevin & Drew were fan favorites from the first season of TAR, and they were the second team eliminated. Rudy Boesch was the fan favorite of the original Survivor, and he was the second person eliminated. Hey, with my two favorite teams gone, I have to take whatever joy I can get.