Expedition Impossible: Trimming the Fat

First of all, my apologies to those of you who’ve been following my Expedition Impossible reviews (all ten of you! just kidding! sort of!) – I missed reviewing the show last week. But for good reason! I just moved into my first own apartment, and getting things like Internet and digital cable set up are, unfortunately, less than a piece of cake. Especially when you live in an old building. And telling the cable guy that you write a TV blog and reeeeaaaallly need your shows back doesn’t seem to make them set it up any faster. And they forgot to give me a DVR! But I’m rambling.

Anyway, lucky for me last week’s episode of Expedition Impossible was, shall I say…only slightly more exciting than watching a guy try to feed a cable wire underneath my carpet. But this week’s episode was better, so let’s talk about it!

Third Guy Blind

I have to say, if it weren’t for Eric this show wouldn’t be nearly as entertaining. Yeah, the tasks are rather difficult for everyone – hiking on rough terrain, jumping off cliffs, zip-lining, kayaking on rapids, these are all things that cater to adrenaline junkies. But doing all of those things in the freakin’ dark? I cannot believe how amazing Eric is. He’s a superhero!

OK, so this week we saw the Fab 3 start off in the lead, but by the end of the episode the Gypsies had regained their rightful place on top. Those guys are going to be really hard to beat, and rightfully so. They’re well-traveled, adventurous, outdoorsy guys. They don’t waste time arguing. They’re sharp, they wear cool scarves and they rock mustaches. They’re so cool, I’m kind of bummed they’ve been wasted on a summertime show. I can totally see them dumping whoever the weakest link is and obliterating the competition on The Amazing Race, BJ and Tyler style.

The Fab 3 could be a strong team, but their team dynamic sucks. They lost a huge lead in the first task, where teams had to search through piles of carpets for one that had five holes that could line up to reveal a clue. Even though they made up enough ground to finish in second place, I wouldn’t be surprised if they make it near the end of the expedition and lose because they can’t cooperate with one another.

The other teams that could challenge the Gypsies for a win are No Limits, who came in third this week, and the Football Players, who placed fourth. These teams have been leading the pack all along, but I’m not sure they’ll be able to outdo the Gypsies in the end. The Football Players have trouble in water, and Eric is obviously at a serious disadvantage, even though he’s a rock star.

Go Fish

Teams that are just waiting to be eliminated are the Country Boys (5th place), the California Girls and the Cops (they arrived sixth and seventh, simultaneously). The California Girls are doing an impressive job as the last all-female team standing, but they’ve been squeaking by for a few weeks and have an obvious weak link.

One task that seemed easy but proved to be more difficult this week came toward the end, when one team member had to swim into a cave to retrieve a key marked with a symbol that matched the one on the lock. It looked easy enough – they were all animals, so you presumably just had to remember “monkey”, “scorpion”, etc. But once in the cave, there were four options for each animal – you had to know which way the animal was facing, how a tail curved, etc. Smart teams like the Gypsies shouted back and forth to get the correct information. Lucky teams like Fab 3 just happened to grab the right one. Stupid teams like the Cops barely looked at the symbol, randomly grabbed one hoping it would fit, and had to swim back a second time to retrieve the correct key. I mean, come on! You guys are cops, you’re supposed to have good attention to detail!

Despite the Cops struggling with the key challenge and the Cali Girls struggling with the kayaking, both teams managed to stay ahead of the Fishermen. The Gloucester boys just weren’t in it to win it – one actually wanted to take the slower rappelling route rather than jump off a cliff into the ocean! Look dude, I get it – I wouldn’t want to risk my life for whatever measly prize the show is offering either. But everyone else has already done it, and they survived. And I don’t think the show would ask you to jump off the cliff if there were sharp, treacherous rocks waiting below to smash up your skull. So man up.

Now that we’re past the halfway point, I’m looking forward to seeing the stronger teams step it up. I’m worried that the challenges are getting a bit repetitive though, so I’m hoping the expedition will start to get more and more difficult. Are you still watching? Comment with your thoughts! And if you missed the show, don’t forget that if you’re in the US you can watch it online.



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