So teams leave Jasper by bus (Gord will wonder why bus and not driving but whatever, man, move on...) and as I note arrive in Calgary. First stop is city hall where Mayor Naheed Nenshi is handing out clues. Find the big head sculpture downtown, which is in front of the Bow, the 2nd tallest building in town, not far from city hall. It's The Exes, followed by the Softball Daters (Steph and Kristen), and then the Quebeckers, Stephane and Antoine (I think. Remember the soup for kid thing?). And by Mr. Big Head (yeah I know this public art has another name but I'm not looking it up), it's a clue for a Roadblock. Something about control which is actually just a rappel down the Calgary Tower. Based on the clue, Gord might have done that but if I did that, I'd be shouting "Ma, I can see your house from here." Yep, my mom still lives in Calgary.
Anyway, Emmett, Kristen and Antoine rappel. It's a long way down so it probably takes a lot of time but it's not that tough a task. Although a couple to teams complained about the wedgie aspect about the harness so that was probably uncomfortable. Meanwhile, other teams have left Jasper and based on the times people left the pitstop, the first bus probably arrived in Calgary as teams were just leaving. Anyway, teams arrive into Calgary, meet the mayor and rappel.
Following the rappel, it's off to find the the Beatnik bus. But you have to use social media to do so. Very interesting task; might be the first time a race (at least an English one) has gotten teams to use social media for a task. Of course, the Exes and the Softball Daters form an alliance but don't realize the bus ain't hanging on for long. Once the song's over, it's heading to another part of downtown. And then another. I found it hilarious that once Rita and Yvette got to this task, they thought the Beatnik bus was part of Calgary Transit and used the CTS sort-of emergency system to ask for help. Thumbs up to the CTS employee who actually helped them. However, I must chastise these two fellow Edmontonians for having trouble finding the Calgary Tower. Sure, there's that whole Battle of Alberta thing but even so, you gotta know what the Calgary Tower looks like.
Anyway, once you catch up to the Beatnik bus, your clue has an extra note in it. If you head to the Canada Boy recording printing plant and do a task, you could find the Express Passes, one to keep, one to give away. The alliance of the top 2 teams decides to go for these and make a deal; whomever gets the Express Passes will give the other one to the other team. Sounds fair so off they go into different cabs. But the Exes realize that there is also a Detour in this clue. Sim or Swim. In Swim, you have to head a fish hatchery, corral a bunch of fish in a tank and then transfer those fish into holding cages. In a way it's a very Calgary type task, rounding up animals but instead of cows or horses, which you'd expect in Cowtown, it's fish, which you don't. I like that kind of thinking. Great job producers if this was part of your thinking.
In Sim, you head to the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology and using a crane simulator, each team has to transfer a weight through a path and back in less than six minutes. I'm thinking that's more of a Gord and Wayne thing cause it involves sitting down and a TV. I wonder if those simulators have a beer holder? Hmmm. But I'd mostly pick this task because I studied journalism at SAIT. And ss the show goes on, we see that each of these tasks are both difficult but in different ways. Which is one thing I really like about the Canada race. There's been a tendency in the US one to have one detour task be much harder than the other, which sucks.
Because of the Detour, the Exes decide forget their deal with Steph and Kristen, skip the Express Pass search and head to the Swim task. It's one of those decisions that might make sense, but also might hurt them sometime later in the race. It pays off but for now, that's only in the short term. As we see, it takes Steph and Kristen a long time but they do get the Express Passes. And any deal they may have had with Exes, is now toast. Methinks they aren't getting the pass. And it's not a good idea to make and break a deal with another team so early. Remember what happened to the Kayakers in Season 1? But Jillian and Emmett are a strong team, finishing the Swim task relatively quickly, and arriving at the pitstop, the new Calgary Music Centre, first. Their second first place finish and it's only Episode 2. Sure, they argue sometimes but you can't deny their abilities. The trip to Paris is also nice.
I'm pretty sure the fish task also needed a lot of patience cause those fish were slippery suckers. It looked like one team was done but nope, there would be a fish under the cage, or hiding by one of those fence thingys, or just swimming like the way fish do. I really enjoyed Julie and Lowell attitude during this and other tasks. It seemed tough but they kept positive, throwing out puns left and right, literally him from the right and she from the left. So far, these guys are another of my fav teams because of this and the fact they also work very well together. Kudos also go to Frankie and Amy for kicking ass on this task. Those two have spunk and could be a dark horse team this season.
All the other teams hit the mat, including Steph and Kristen, who not only added another task to this day but also switched Detours. Tough day for them but they pushed through it. At the back of the pack were Kate and Kelly, who seem to talk too much about fitness, and Rita and Yvette, who just have to step it up a notch to stay in. Come on Edmonton, you can do it. Both finish that fish task pretty close and it's race with the cabs. Rita and Yvette's cabbie goes the extra mile (take note Edmonton taxi drivers), passes K and K. And it's a race into the building, and up the stairs. The teams are literally seconds apart but Kate and Kelly are the last team to arrive. And yes they were the ones you fans chose as the eliminated team in our recent poll. Tied for first in this elimination poll was Stephane and Antoine. But they came in second, so suck on that all you non-believers. Teams with old guys can do very good! Third in our poll was Anne and Tanya, and fourth was Non-Elimination.
And that's what it was, a non-elim. Kate and Kelly are saved again, they get to stay another leg. So there will be no team interview this week. And due to the Euro Cup, we won't be heading to the Druid for a video blog. We're gonna do it old school, back at one of our original locations, Gord's back yard. So watch for that.
Overall, an excellent episode, not as great as episode 1 but man, that was one of the best so it's hard to top or even match that one. Still, this was a solid follow up, great drama, some excellent storytelling this time around. Next week looks to continue that momentum as teams head to Vietnam. Awesome choice for a leg, faraway, exotic, language issues, team issues in some serious heat and humidity. Should be fun.