Finding a Lock in a Haystack-TAR Kills Two Teams Chances

By: Adam Mortensen

The Show-The Amazing Race 6
The Participants-The producers, Lena & Kristy, Adam & Rebecca, Hayden & Aaron
What Happened?-The producers took two teams (effectively three) out of the running via luck challenges
"Awards"-The "Book of Bad Ideas" for Producer Mistakes

The Amazing Race 6 was littered with bad casting decisions (*cough* Jonathan *cough*) and production mistakes. After a brilliantly casted and produced fifth season, this was incredibly disappointing. They gave us jerks like Jonathan and Kendra and pretty much eliminated two teams by luck alone.

The first time one of these luck challenges showed up was episode three. Just before the pit stop, the teams were asked to roll several bales of hay in pursuit of a clue. There were well over two hundred of them which made it even worse. Lena (pictured top left) and Kristy had arrived at this challenge in third place. By the time they were done, they were eliminated. There is no way they would have been eliminated had this roadblock not popped up. They were a strong team that easily could have contended for the $1 million prize.

Luck challenges do have a place in almost every show. I really don't mind a little luck to my challenges. Forcing a team to maybe unravel 10-15 bales of hay would have been fine. It would have had the potential to knock some teams down a few places but it probably wouldn't have unfairly eliminated a team. However, making teams roll (potentially) up to two hundred bales of hay was way too much. Luck should not be the sole basis for an elimination. Having this roadblock right before the pit stop gave teams no chance to recover and spelled doom for one team (a well-liked team at that). In addition, rolling hay for that long could have caused some nasty hand injuries (and did).

The producers obviously didn't learn from this situation as they decided to throw yet another luck based challenge right before the SECOND-TO-LAST PIT STOP! Actually, this effectively took two teams out of the race. Obviously, Hayden and Aaron were eliminated for being the last team to reach the pit stop. It also took out Adam and Rebecca (making it a two team race to the end-not good for television) as they were way too far behind to catch up. This time the chosen members had to try to unlock one of 3,000 locks. This challenge was even worse for the hands of the contestants. Rebecca even said she expected her battered and bloodied hands to stay that way for good. The roadblock was so bad that it might have been a better idea to just take a penalty and head straight to the pit stop.

The producers of The Amazing Race are generally very good at making this show happen. It is probably the most well-produced reality show. However, they definitely deserve this hall of shame entry for their poor judgement in episode three as well as their inability to learn from their mistakes. Let's hope they learn their lesson and we will have much "fairer" luck-based challenges in the upcoming season seven.

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