Hallo en welkom! Got to start practicing my Dutch in case I ever go to Holland. Here’s my recap of The Amazing Race Season 21, Episode 9, in which the five remaining teams are so close to crossing over the Prime Meridian back into the Western Hemisphere but… don’t actually. But so what, because they are going to the beautiful city of Amsterdam!
Jaymes and James depart first at 7:32 p.m., and the clue comes with a flag of the Netherlands. Trey and Lexi, who leave at 7:49 p.m., initially think the flag represents France. Close, but no cigar, kiddos. Natalie and Nadiya depart in third at 9:15 p.m.
The three teams in front have formed a bond. In this case, the bond means that they’re conspiring and playing dirty. We honestly haven’t had much of that this season. The twins pitch the idea, and the others agree, that if there is a double U-Turn in this leg, the first team who gets there U-Turns Abbie and Ryan, and the second team should use it on the team that U-Turns Abbie and Ryan. That means that Abbie and Ryan would not get a chance to U-Turn any team behind them.
Jaymes and James feel uncomfortable U-Turning Abbie and Ryan because they don’t have any reason to. Do I sense some foreshadowing here?
Abbie and Ryan leave the starting mat in fourth at 5:28 p.m. Wow, these teams are really far apart. They decide to book multiple connecting flights in case they miss one like they did last time. Hmm, is this even more foreshadowing?!
Josh and Brent depart in last place at 8:11 a.m. Wow! They were a whole day apart from the front of the pack. Crazy. They feel like others don’t think they’re a threat.
- The twins somehow convince the flight person to get them on the earliest flight out of all of the groups, due to arrive in Amsterdam via Rome at 11:30 a.m.
- The Chips have a direct flight to Amsterdam that arrives at 12:15 p.m.
- Trey and Lexi arrive in Amsterdam via Larnaca at 1:05 p.m.
- Abbie and Ryan have two connecting flights via Frankfurt that arrive in Amsterdam at 12:45 p.m. and 2:05 p.m. How did they get a flight earlier than Trey and Lexi? Hmm…
- Josh and Brent via Oslo, 4:35pm arrival.
Abbie and Ryan arrive in Frankfurt, but they’re not allowed onto their first connecting flight because the check-in is closed and they didn’t check in because they just got off their plane. So, that’s what the second connecting flight is for! They get on that, but their new flight is having technical difficulties so it can’t take off. Dun dun dun…
Welcome to Amsterdam
The teams travel to Amsterdam Central Station, and the twins are the first ones there.
Fast Forward! Teams go to the Van Gogh Café and board the Flying Dutchman bus. The twins decide to go for it. They board the Flying Dutchman, and the bus takes them into the water! Cool, reminds me of the duck tours in Boston. To win the fast forward, they have seven minutes to eat five raw herring fish each before the ride is over. The twins complete it with a little more than half a minute to spare, and they get kisses from the bus driver. Off to the pit stop they go.
The Chips arrive in Amsterdam in second place. They decide to go for the Fast Forward but realize that the girls already got it after arriving at the Café. Therefore, they have to proceed with their normal route. The Chips get on a boat traveling through a canal with a beautiful view. They get to a dock and find the Poffertjesboot, a boat, for their next clue. They get served some delicious-looking powdered pastries along with their clue.
Trey and Lexi get to Amsterdam in third.
Detour: Back in Time or Organ to Grind
- Back In Time: Now I have that Pitbull song stuck in my head. Teams must recreate Dutch artist Rembrandt’s famous painting “The Night Watch” using live actors dressed up in costumes and place them exactly as Rembrandt painted them.
- Organ to Grind: Teams must find one of three giant street organs. One team member operates the organ while the other collect 30 euros in tips.
The Chips go with Organ to Grind. James grinds out music from the organ, while Jaymes grinds and dances while collecting tips. When the stream of people slow down, they decided to “take all necessary steps” and strip down into their Chippendale costumes with the bowtie and cuffs. No surprises there! No surprises that money pours in easily from then on out. The money mostly comes from guys though. A grandma gives them ten euros to round them out to 30.
Trey and Lexi go with the organ task because Lexi can get people excited. She quickly gets the 30 euros.
Teams proceed Museum Geelvinck where they find a U-Turn mat. It’s a Double U-Turn! The Chips don’t want to play dirty and consider backing out of the previously agreed upon plan. But… *commercial break* they decide to U-Turn Abbie and Ryan anyway. They feel terrible about it, but ultimately they want to win money for their parents and believe that taking out who they consider to be the strongest team will help them win the million dollar prize.
When Trey and Lexi get to the U-Turn mat, they U-Turn the Chippendales, and the plan is complete.
Roadblock: Ditch Vaulting
The teams go to Ransdorp, where they find their Roadblock clue. It’s a Switchback, aka a task that was completed on a previous season of the Race that the producers and viewers enjoyed. One member must vault across a ditch using a pole, collect a pair of wooden shoes with the pitstop location written on them, and vault back. This task was introduced in Season 12, Episode 2.
The teams this season don’t face the same troubles as some racers did back then. James gets it on his first try, as does Trey.
Pit stop: House of Rembrandt’s Mistress
The twins win $5,000 cash each for winning this leg of the race. Jaymes and James come in second, and Trey and Lexi finish in third.
The Stragglers: The Race for Not Last
Since Abbie and Ryan had some serious flight struggles, they end up arriving in Amsterdam at the same time as Josh and Brent.
The two teams decide to go with the paint task. It’s probably for the best that they’re indoors because it has started to pour outside. Kind of reflect s the mood of the teams still racing, eh? Abbie and Ryan get the detour done on their first try. Josh and Brent finish soon after.
When they arrive at the U-Turn mat, Abbie and Ryan realize that they’re doomed, and they have to complete the other detour task. They’re disappointed that it was the Chippendales who U-Turned them.
Josh is considering them helping them do the detour, but ultimately they decide to proceed along in the race without them.
There’s no one outside because it’s raining, and Abbie initially has some trouble getting people to donate. Later on, it seems like she’s getting delirious and decides to force some fun out of the current situation. She dances around with a lady for a while, who then brings her from 24 to 30 euros. She cries into the woman’s shoulder.
(Side note: I initially wrote “delicious” instead of “delirious” in that previous paragraph. Funny how two words can look so similar but have such different meanings. And that’s why you always proofread your work!)
Josh does the Roadblock and trips walking there, hurting his ankle. He gets over on his first try, though! They arrive at the finish mat in fourth.
Ryan messes up a couple of times on the Roadblock but gets over. It’s dark outside and they finally arrive at the pit stop. There, Abbie and Ryan are eliminated. Abbie’s crying. “It’s not once in a lifetime, it’s once in hundred lifetimes,” Ryan says. They wanted to win really badly, and they walk out disappointed. Ryan says he doesn’t feel like he’s accomplished what he set out to accomplish. Well, not much you can do now. Just try to look back on your experience as a good one!
Next week, teams travel to Spain to play tennis (yay!) and go bull-fighting.
Here’s the final order of finish:
- Natalie and Nadiya
- Jaymes and James
- Trey and Lexi
- Josh and Brent
- Abbie and Ryan (ELIMINATED)
Honestly, I don’t think Josh and Brent have much of a chance against the other three consistently strong teams. Next week has got to be a non-elimination leg, though, right? There are two episodes and three legs left in the season. How do you think the rest of the season is going to play out? Can Josh and Brent crack the top three? Let me know in comments!