Amazing Race China Season 3 (Olympics Edition): Athens, Greece

As a person who don’t care about watching the Olympics, I apologize, but at least I’m now doing a recap of the new season of the Amazing Race China Season 3: Olympics Edition, with hopefully great tasks with great difficulty and great locations (which ends in Brazil, the place where the Olympics will be held this year) for celebrities (which unfortunately, not all of the teams consist of an athlete) to compete with great enthusiasm (which won’t be a hurdle to jump after how weak last season was). So, with the grand opening that introduced our host Allan Wu again in this season starting line, the Great Wall of China in China, the place where the Olympics is hosted in Summer 2008, let’s reveal the cast:

Team Broadcasters: Zhang Meixi & Zang Yafei, reporters for Greater China Live in Shenzhen, one of the best intro scene for an Amazing Race Team, I was surprised for a sudden when that news broadcast played in the first time.

Team Hurdle: Liu Xiang & Ji Longxiang: Olympic Gold medallist hurdler & Brother/Cousin who plays discus throw regionally.

Team SNH48: Huang Tingting & Sun Rui: Idols of SNH48, a Chinese version of AKB48 (yeah, there something on my mind wanted to say something about that), which is a good call since people outside of that sphere would get to know you more.

Team Siblings: Vanness Wu & Xiao Fengfeng: Taiwanese Superstar & his sister.

Team Dancer: Jin Xing & Heinz: Transgender contemporary dance founder and her German husband

Team Actors: Zhang Zhehan & Zhang Sifan: Actors

Team Divers: Guo Jingjing & Huo Qigang: Gold Medalist Diver & her husband

Team Returnees: Liu Chang & Jin Dachuan, models who still don’t have their own Wikipedia page, and why the show couldn’t get Li Xiaopeng & Li Anqi instead, they are the athlete team.

That is a really generic intro, but let’s get started.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wblKDL-X7dc

The Journey Climbs For The Flags (Physical to Endurance)

A great opening challenge that has their own kind of complexity with how different are the heights for the steps, & the addition of fireworks is aesthetically nice as well. And the fact that it tires people immediately says a lot of promise.

Roadblock: Flips In The Air (Skill)

Fun challenge that showcase one of the performance acts for Beijing 2008 in that monumental place (Beijing National Station), and it shows how difficult for people who couldn’t finish it in the first try, or people that are not divers.

After a meal and 600 euros provided by Ronald McDonald of all people…teams traveled to Athens, Greece, the place where the Olympics started, hosted in 1896 & 2004, where Liu Xiang & Guo Jingjing earned gold for their fields.

By the way, I found Jin Xing treatment of Heinz is crazy given how they haven’t even left China yet.

(What’s the problem with Amazing Race for rarely going there anyway, China went there twice, while you need to take 20 season to finally have a trip there?)

Now at Athens, with teams being separated by 3 minutes (should be 5, too easy for team to catch), they are now off to their next task.

Detour: Ostomachion (Mental + Physical) or Spartan Warrior (Skill)

Both of the tasks are quite nice, given that Spartan Warrior needs people to do 2 sporting tasks each to grant some additional difficulty and the Ostomachion (the Puzzle of Archimedes) was quite hard with the element of needing to carry your bags together to obtain a hint.

Still, it is quite unbalanced in favour for the people that choose Ostomachion, given that you don’t need to queue for your turn in doing javelins or doing a discus throw and mental puzzle is always easy for teams to form an alliance if team know how to use the stairs gimmick (like Team SNH48 found out and decided to tire themselves).

Also, that javelin thrower who actually missed the shot while demonstrating should told us that javelin throwing is just too difficult for a beginner.

Ridiculous Moments:

  1. Vanness freaking out about the puzzle and convince Fengfeng to switch tasks, for a more difficult task
  2. Zhehan is freaking out about Sifan always stepping outside the line to the point of thinking that as a national offense.
  3. The team that placed last in China, Team Dancer (not helping matters when Heinz had a potty break & Jun Xing being really high maintenance at this stage of the race) actually manages to finish 1st at the Detour (yeah, this leg right now have an insane level of placement shifting).
  4. A child manages to lure Team Returnees to have a picture with them.

And Team SNH48 & Team Returnees talked themselves to have a short term alliance.

Evzones March (Skills)

The only task that showcase the Greek culture, though the task is quite difficult as well.

I have to say it again, Xin Jing is a real bitch to her husband, and this is makes me feel that it wouldn’t be surprisingly when they got divorced if they act this way in the race.

Olympic Trivia (Mental)

While it is nice to relieve those memories of who got gold for Summer Athens 2008 and kept up with the Olympics theme, it’s a bullshit challenge given that there are actual athletes who actually competed there (and actually got their pictures featured), I hope that the show don’t repeat that challenge since it’s really unfair for people who wanted to join the race to travel everywhere & wasn’t really focused on Olympics, and please get more judges for that challenge to give the slower teams a fighting chance in a footrace.

If it the race was all athletes, I would probably praise this given how insane the possible pairings that the board consist, but alas it just turns to luck and alliance puzzle sharing.

Unique pit stop greeter to hammer the Olympic theme: Gold Medallist 100m Breaststroke Swimmer Luo Xuejuan

1st place: Team Returnees, with a nostalgia trip with 2 Express Passes.

Non-eliminated: Team Broadcasters, in a really anticlimactic way.

And so, the great start of this season is finally here to beast out ratings and entertainment. Next Stop: Munich, Germany. Oktoberfest anyone?

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