Both The Amazing Race and Survivor ended there seasons this past week. Both had enjoyable seasons and I am already looking forward to the fall when they start again
I really enjoyed the Amazing Race this season. Was a little apprehensive when it was announced that the contestants would consist of team known for their on-line presence (You Tubers, and other On-Line video creators). As mentioned before, I am never a big fan of Celebrity versions of any shows (was what ruined Who Wants to be a Millionaire), and feel the shows are at their best with average everyday people. But was surprised how down to earth and normal this seasons famous contestants were. Found myself really rooting for the them all. Was a bit upset that Dana and Matt won, as I was rooting for the other 2 teams in the final 3 ahead of them. But they ran a great race and deserved to win.
The final was a bit anticlimactic due to the challenge where they needed to jump off a building and grab the clue that was suspends in front of them. I liked the challenge, but felt if separated the teams to much as only one team could go at a time, and once you missed it took a long time to try again. Basically once Matt grabbed the clue, and both Korey and Sheri missed, the race was over. There was no way for the other teams to catch up. Add to that that the teams are now really smart and plan for the final challenge of remembering all the places that have been, and it lost some of the excitement.
Still, its such a fun show to watch as it shows the world in ways not usually portrayed in school or the media. I really believe kids in school (and older folks as well) should be made to watch and be exposed to places that they have hopefully heard of but probably never seen, or have a set perception of. The world is an amazing place and I thank all involved in The Amazing Race (The producers, the crew, the cast, and of course Phil Keoghan) for showing me the the wonders of the world each season
As for Survivor, it was a good, but a bit slow season. Nobody really hit me as a great or memorable contestant. Tai started off strong, but kind of got old to me. Winner Michele Fitzgerald (Congratulations to another winner from the great state of New Jersey- joining Tony Vlachos and Natalie Anderson) started off slow, and was basically a after though until the last few episodes. If I had to vote on the final 3, I probably would have voted for Aubry, as I felt she played the best game, always being aware of what was going on, and making moves and decisions that helped her get the the end. And she was one tough competitor, fighting in every challenge.
I didn’t really like the surprise twits of giving one of the final 3 a chance to vote out one of the jury members. I felt is changed the core of the game (Being able to vote off your tribe mates, while convincing them to vote for you to win). I like when they change the game up (Tribal switches, Exile Island, and even the super idol this season). These things keep the contestants from getting to comfortable with the same patterns at philosophy’s each season. But changing the core of the game seems like a desperate move to create drama that doesn’t need to created. I know Jeff Probst says they review each season for what works and what doesn’t. Hopefully they see that this twist has more down sides than upsides and is not used in future episodes.
Speaking of Jeff Probst, he continues to be one of the best Reality TV hosts, and does a great job with the live Reunion Show. I shiver every time I think of the early seasons when CBS threw Btyant Gumbal out there whit no real connection to the show, and how they made a great decision on letting Jeff become the host for Season 5
Survivor Reunion Show Wiki
Looking forward to next season, and like the idea of pitting Older Generation X Contestants (1961 – 1981, where Average Andy fits) against younger Millennials (1980 – 2000). Should be interesting to see which group is better suited for the setting and challenges of Survivor.
Back to writing about other things in the next few weeks, including my take on Matt Harvey and what the Mets need to do with him. Its more mental than anything. He needs to get rid of Scott Boros, who has messed him up by convincing him he will be the highest paid pitcher of all time and putting to much pressure on him. I think now every time Harvey gives up a run, or loses a game, his main concern is not the Mets, but that he just loss some bargaining power and a few million dollars of his big free agent contract.
He needs to step back and just have fun pitching. He has the talent, and his big payday will come if he pitches like he is capable of.
Pictures of some of the cards I picked up at the Philly Non Sports Card Show next week to come as I am finishing up opening a few boxes of the Star Trek 50th set, and sorting through some of the free prom cards I picked up. It was a fun show as usual