Amazing Race Canada recap: Faster, fiercer and far from over -

Amazing Race Canada recap: Faster, fiercer and far from over

Week 3, Spoiler Alert: Coal mining, line dancing and back stabbing


Everything I need to know about marriage, I’m currently learning on The Amazing Race Canada. It’s only costing me a basic cable package.

This week, the seven remaining teams travelled to Calgary from Vancouver to partake in the traditional Albertan activities of line dancing, dinosaur assembly, and coal mining. (The lessons about provincial pastimes are included free.)

The series is getting faster and fiercer each week. But it was easily the show’s two married couples — Body Break icons Hal and Joanne, and Montreal doctors Holly and Brett — who made it must-watch TV on Monday.

If the last time you saw Hal and Joanne was in a TV spot about how to choose a gym when you were just trying to choose Full House, it’s hard to convey … no, never mind, it isn’t. Their relationship is as solid as their upper bodies. There. Now you know.

Here’s a small sampling of their exchanges in episode three:

  • Hal hails a cab. Joanne enthuses, “Good thinking on the whistle!”
  • Joanne completes the line-dancing challenge. Hal marvels, “Jo, you looked fantastic. You looked really good. You did a fantastic job.”

When times got tough, as they do when a reality show requires you to shovel coal in the Alberta badlands after you’ve just exhausted yourself line dancing, Joanne didn’t complain. Far from it.

“Wow! This is a great workout. Upper body, lower body. No wonder the coal miners are fit,” she said, carrying right on shoveling with Hal.

After flawless co-operation the entire episode, Hal and Joanne finished first this week, and won a bonus trip anywhere in the United States.

Meanwhile, Montreal doctors Holly and Brett fell from first to last place during a single day, recovering to finish sixth only because Tim Sr. and Tim Jr. got lost en route to the pit stop.

What went wrong for the couple is basically the same stuff that gets you uninvited to the neighbourhood board game night.

At the line dancing roadblock, Holly took multiple tries to get the moves down, while Brett paced the stands complaining about being unaccustomed to losing. From those exact same stands, Hal had hollered to Joanne that she looked good (in cutoffs, a plaid shirt, cowboy boots and a cowboy hat).

Besides not being excellent at line dancing, Holly and Brett’s own nastiness began to catch up with them this week. Hippies Kristen and Darren decided to break their alliance with the doctors and hand their extra express pass to sisters Vanessa and Celina instead, reasoning that the doctors couldn’t be trusted.

They were probably correct. Minutes earlier, Holly and Brett hid all of the Alberta maps at the airport so the other teams wouldn’t be able to consult them.

This stunt made the doctors’ holier-than-thou reaction to the broken alliance particularly rich.

“I’ll be honest,” Brett said to Kristen when she explained their decision. “We’re pediatricians. We work with families. Our word is worth something.”

Somewhere, former Public Safety Minister Vic Toews applauded this logic.

This doesn’t mean you should count Holly and Brett out of the race. Becoming the show’s villains actually means they’re more likely (through the magic of reality TV) to be in this until the very end. This week turned out to be a non-elimination round, meaning that even when it looked like the end was nigh, it really wasn’t.

But it’s hard to imagine one of them not cracking in the coming weeks. Even after they assembled the dinosaur skeleton and were on their way to the pit stop, all Holly could do was panic that they were about to be eliminated and all Brett could do was shout, “Hol, don’t talk about it! I don’t want to hear about it again!”

At the same stage in the race, Hal and Joanne thanked the coal miner who had supervised their digging, and embraced him in a group hug, before getting into their truck to head to the pit stop.

They’ve been together for 25 years and I bet they get more board game night invitations than they can possibly accept.


Amazing Race Canada recap: Faster, fiercer and far from over

  1. Not a single contestant from east of Ontario….What’s with that?

    • omg are people STILL complaining about that? Get over it already! They took the best people of who applied, regardless of where they were from.

      • That’s BS.
        Don’t know who did the choosing, but they obviously had an agenda, that didn’t include applicants from the East Coast ( maybe because the Canadian version of Big Brother had a Nova Scotian winner, by mistake)
        But this group of people really represent American stereotypes – the colored sisters, the doctors, the gay guys, the aging fitness commercial actors, the wannabe hippies, the father/son, the boyfriends, the girlfriends…
        Shame they couldn’t have followed some of the Canadian sterotypes- the unemployed Acadian fish plant worker from New Brunswick; the fiddleing Scotsman from Cape Breton; the Asian superacheiver from Vancouver; the drag queen gay pride promotor from Toronto, the cowboy rednecks from Alberta, ; the “naive” gullible Newfoundland seal clubber; the Bud the Spud potato farmer from Pei ( & maybe the Anne look-a-like). Nanook dog sledder from northern Canada, and so on.(couldn’t come up with a stereotype from Saskatchewan or Manitoba- they seem to fall in with Alberta for some reason)

        • It is a shame they didn’t get people from every part of the country. You have to admit though that an American audience wouldn’t even understand or appreciate “Canadian stereotypes”. They also might not understand much of what a Newfoundlander from outside St. John’s was saying.
          Did you ever see Jim Carrey’s Newfoundlander Captain in the movie “A Series of Unfortunate Events”? Awesome!

    • isnt montreal east of ontario?

    • Check your map – the two pediatricians are from Montreal!!
      And, why does it matter where the participants are from? Isn’t it better to get the best participants or those whom the producers think will make a good show. Aren’t you Canadian? Or, do you just go by your province or town? If they had a team from each province and each territory – well, guess what, you’d need a longer show as you’d have too many teams. And then, imagine all the complaints about being ‘politically correct’. We don’t need that.

    • The twin girls are from Ottawa.

  2. Love Hal and Joanne for the same reasons you do. They get the job done without complaining, and they look like they are having fun. Like all good athletes, they both want to win, but they are also enjoying the journey.

    • Hal and Joanne have a huge advantage. They have worked together in front of a camera forever so they are used to being together 24/7 and they are used to being on tv.