Normally with The Amazing Race, the teams line up at a starting line somewhere in the United States and they all stand there with bated breath as they wait for the show’s host, Phil, to say, “Go.” However, because this is the social media season and all of the racers are social media stars or their relatives, they all started in their own homes and received video messages from Phil detailing that the race was starting now and announcing where the first destination was located.
The Amazing Race is a reality TV show where eleven pairs race around the world for the chance to win a million dollars. They travel to different countries and are expected to complete different tasks that test their communication, physical endurance and mental abilities, all while incorporating the culture of the country they are in. Most of the tasks are everyday activities that the locals have to perform during their daily routines and the racers get to experience these cultures while completing these tasks and racing to beat their fellow competitors.
I’ve watched The Amazing Race since I was 13-years-old and I’ve watched Tyler Oakley’s videos for three years. Now, with the 28th season of The Race social media stars will be racing around the world for the chance to win a million dollars. I always like when The Race has special seasons, like the blind date season, or any of the All Star seasons, because it adds a new twist to the show. While I like the show, sometimes it gets a little repetitive unless there’s a twist.
There have been four episodes of this season so far and as a dedicated fan of the show, I’m going to share my opinions on each of the teams.
Names: Tyler Oakley and Korey Kuhl
Social Media: YouTubers
Relationship: Best friends
Ranks Each Leg: 2nd, 1st, 2nd, 2nd
Background and opinion: Who? I’ve never heard of them. They’re really the only team I knew outside of the show, so of course I’m going to be rooting for them. But going into the show I wasn’t really sure how well they would actually do. I knew they would be entertaining and fun, as shown in the second episode when Tyler started dancing on the beach when they finished a challenge, but I didn’t know they were going to do so well. Usually on their channel, they often talk about how lazy they are, possibly to seem relatable, but they are both doing really well physically and their communication is among the best of all the teams. They’re definitely the ones to beat this season so far.
Names: Kurt Gibson and Brodie Smith
Social Media: Pro Frisbee Players/YouTubers
Relationship: Best friends
Ranks Each Leg: 5th, 2nd, 1st, 1st
Background and opinion: I go back and forth every episode with them. I think they’re really strong contenders, and the third episode they definitely showed their professional frisbee player skills when they had to play Tejo, a traditional Colombian sport where you hurl a disk at a small exploding target containing gun powder that blows up when you hit it. Sometimes I find their personalities a bit annoying, but I do think they could potentially go all the way to end, so I’m curious to see how they’ll do.
Social Media: Runners and co-hosts of RoosterTeeth on YouTube
Ranks Each Leg: 6th, 3rd, 3rd, 4th
Background and opinion: I kind of knew who they were before the season started, because my friend watches Rooster Teeth and when the cast was announced I remember how she said she wanted to watch the show for them. I think they’re going to be really strong as well. They got off to a bit of a rocky start the first leg, but their communication has been really good throughout. I always look at which teams fight as the show goes on, because that often affects their performance if they’re constantly fighting. Luckily for these two, they are constantly kissing and supporting each other and I think they can be a very strong team.
Social Media: Dancers/YouTubers
Ranks Each Leg: 1st, 4th, 4th, 3rd
Background and opinion: Every season there is always a couple that gets the drama edit. The couple that is always shown fighting and yelling. So far, they have been this couple, which honestly stinks. I always take a lot of the drama with a grain of salt because I know that it’s all edited and not completely indicative of how they actually are in real life. Also, it hasn’t really affected their performance too much because they’re still towards the top of the pack. I hope that they can work out their differences in the future and become even stronger.
Names: Sheri and Cole LaBrant
Social Media: Vine (Cole)
Relationship: Mother and son
Ranks Each Leg: 9th, 8th, 6th, 7th
Background and opinion: Cole can be a little loud and obnoxious at times, but I think he and his mother have a really great relationship. She’s super sweet and willing to work with and help a lot of the other teams, and I always love seeing great sportsmanship like that. They’ve been doing better than they did in the first two legs, so I’m hoping they’ll continue on this upward spiral.
Names: Zach and Rachel King
Social Media: Vine (Zach)
Ranks Each Leg: 3rd, 6th, 9th, 5th
Background and opinion: Zach is one of the more famous personalities on the show and it’s really cool to see him get recognized almost everywhere they go. In a challenge where they needed to get people to go on a bus and collect pesos from them, Zach was able to get people simply because they recognized him. In the third episode, Rachel messed up with the bus challenge and counted the money wrong, so they had to go back to the challenge and finish. He could have gotten really mad and yelled at her, but he was very calm and I find that admirable.
Social Media: YouTube Hosts for Clevver
Ranks Each Leg: 10th, 5th, 7th, 6th
Background and opinion: I thought they were a little annoying at first, but their enthusiasm is a lot of fun to watch. They seem to have a lot of potential, they just need to be able to find challenges they can excel at. Erin is really claustrophobic and there were two moments where they had to be in small spaces and I could tell that it was really hard for her. Anyone who can overcome fears like that is always really strong in my book. I also love seeing strong all-female teams and I think they have the potential to be one.
Names: Scott and Blair Fowler
Social Media: YouTube (Blair)
Relationship: Father and daughter
Ranks Each Leg: 11th (non-elimination), 9th, 8th, 8th
Background and opinion: Blair was the only other YouTuber I kind of knew first-hand before the show, and unfortunately, my impression wasn’t a positive one. She just never gave me a good feeling and it’s only gotten worse on the show. I think she’s sweet and her father is really nice, but she’s always yelling and it’s hard to have a good opinion about someone who is getting a lot of screen time and practically always yelling. Also, on the third episode she stood by as another team, Cameron and Darius, looked for a clue to a task. She knew where it was and wouldn’t tell them. I know it’s a competition, but they ultimately got eliminated for it, and I thought it was really poor sportsmanship on her part.
There would have been four teams eliminated, but for the first time in the history of The Race the first leg was a non-elimination which saved Scott and Blair. Marty and Hagan, a mother and daughter team, were eliminated because they failed to keep their cab around at a task and had to run to the pit stop. This allowed brothers Darius and Cameron, who were eliminated the next episode, to beat them to the pit stop. Darius and Cameron were very strong competitors, but trouble getting a flight in the second episode lost them a lead they were never able to get back. Brittany and Jessica came in fifth in the third episode, but because of trouble with the tasks they ended up getting eliminated in the fourth episode.
As with every season of The Amazing Race, I always enjoy watching and seeing how the teams grow and interact with each other as the season goes on. This season is no different and it definitely has an added feeling of excitement with all of the fans from social media joining to watch this season. It’s definitely fierce competition this season and I’m curious to see how it plays out.