The Amazing Race returns to CBS for 22nd season
Published: Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, February 20, 2013 05:02
The 22nd season of The Amazing Race premiered Sunday night, and although the show has been on the air for over a decade, producers are still finding ways to keep viewers interested. More than 9.5 million viewers tuned in for the season opener.
Beginning at the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, the 11 teams raced to the airport where they caught a flight to the tropical island of Bora Bora – a first time destination for The Amazing Race. Their first challenge upon arriving to the island was skydiving from a helicopter 10,000 feet in the air.
Then things turned from fast-paced and exciting to tedious and excruciating. Each of the teams had to dig through a field of hundreds of sand castles looking for their next clue. The catch was that each sand castle had to be rebuilt after it was knocked down.
Some teams spent hours in the baking sand and sun before finding their clues and in the end, the last three teams agreed to take a four-hour penalty and skip to the next task.
In the last task of this leg, teams had to fashion a canoe and paddle it over a mile to the finish line.
Jessica and John were the first team to reach the finish line, where they received two "express passes." John, 27, with his bleach blonde hair, and Jessica, 26, have been dating for four years and are reminiscent of Meghan and Cheyne, who won the race a few seasons ago. The couple is from southern California and of course, they love to surf.
Anthony and Bates Battaglia are two professional hockey-playing brothers from North Carolina, and after a second place finish, they seem to be one of the strongest teams on the show so far.
Dave and Connor are a father/son combo who finished third in this leg of the race. This team is easily the most "feel-good" story of the season. Both father and son have recently overcome cancer. No doubt they will have many viewers pulling for them to win.
South Carolina firefighters Matt and Daniel thought they had a good shot at winning the canoe race and securing their spot in the next round, but they were sadly mistaken. The friends were the last team to reach the finish line and the first team to be eliminated from the race.
Somewhere in the middle of the pack was Chuck and Wynona McCall. The McCall’s are from Daphne, Ala., and are by far the most colorful team in this race. Chuck is a lovable, mullet-sporting redneck who has a passion for taxidermy and never seems to stop smiling. Wynona is a wife, mother and hairdresser who seems excited to be on the show, but nearly loses it while looking through sand castles for a clue.
On the other hand, there’s Katie and Max, two newlyweds from Buffalo, N.Y. Having been married for less than a month, the race could put stress on the brand new marriage. However, they seem to be working in evil harmony to win it all. Already they have admitted that they are not in the race to make friends and will do anything to win. This team is sure to cause some drama in future episodes.
After watching the premiere of this season’s race, it’s clear that the producers have some tricks left up their sleeves to keep this thing interesting. New destinations, incentives and twists will definitely be involved in season 22.
All new episodes of The Amazing Race air Sundays at 8 p.m. on CBS.