10-Year Rewatch: TAR1: The Most Daring Competition Ever Attempted
Posted May 23, 2011 @ 11:52 PM
Posted May 25, 2011 @ 1:55 PM
Another question for you...were you surprised after the race that you were the team everyone loved to hate? And were you equally surprised that over the years you became beloved? Were you prepared for reality fame and all that comes with it? Some of the racers from your season (Kim, Leslie, Nancy, Emily) seemed to have disappeared and I've always thought that maybe they weren't prepared for just how intrusive the spotlight can be.
During the Race we were on the overnight ferry from Marseille to Tunis. During that trip we were asked by a producer to go to his stateroom for a confessional type of interview. The 'story editor' as we found out later was asking why we had organized the ticketing in Marseille, and did we know we were considered the 'Bad Boys' of the race. We were new to all of this and how we could be easily manipulated in these interviews. (The footage they showed of me on the first season was when I was boiling mad after repeated questions about how devious we were, I was shown flashing the ticket and saying something about "group Guido". In that same interview we were asked numerous questions about how many years we lived in Paris. Yes, you guessed it, they used all of them.) We had done some things that were considered by the other teams as 'mischevious' but Joe and I felt as long as we were in the boundaries of not breaking any race rules we were OK to race flat out for the million dollar prize. Up until that time we were actually helping Nancy and Emily and other racers wherever we could. Of course, the producers wouldn't show anything nice we did during the legs, but that's what you sign up for before the race starts. The producers can portray you anyway they want. More than anything, we worried about representing the gay community and did not want to come across as 'bad guys' that gave a bad rap to queers. It was tough to watch the show at times, and the way some folks ranted on this thread was pretty severe....I have thick skin so it didn't bother me for long. It was so bad online that Joe has never gone back to any form of blogs or forums since. I decided to stay online because I am such a huge fan of Phil and the show.
We are very happy with our fans and how all of it has turned out. We obviously have embraced our villainous ways (Clink) and are sorry we weren't more agressive in playing the game on All Stars. I was a little star struck myself playing the game with the Beauty Queens and Rob and Amber. The second time around was harder because many of the rules of the game had been altered since that first season. Newer players certainly had an advantage over us because they had played the game more recently. As an example you could purchase many flights as long as they were refundable. At one time in South Africa going to Zanzibar, Joe and I had purchased over $50,000 in tickets. (not exactly a long flight either) It was not possible to do this in the first season.
The aftermath of the attention from our appearance on the show was surreal. It still seems like it happened to someone else. After our first appearance on The Rosie Show we were mobbed on Fifth Avenue by fans. We were actually asked to leave Saks Fifth Avenue because fans taking pictures of us in the store were disrupting shoppers! 10 years later we still get recognized in airports and big city tourist areas like Las Vegas. A unique and interesting thing happened in the year after the first season. A friend called from the east coast and told us he was playing Trivial Pursuit and Team Guido was an answer to a question! (What was the name of the gay duo, Joe and Bill on the first season of The Amazing Race) We could not believe it.
The very best that has happened to us from our appearances has been the teens, moms and dads of gay sons and daughters we have heard from over the years. One teen was at risk, very depressed, we put him in touch with a help line in his home town so he could get counsel from a local agency. We have been moved by this response and happy that, after all, it was a very positive experience.
We were contacted by an author to co-write a book about our lives and our relationship....a very interesting experience...the Book "Gay Reality' is avaiable online at amazon.com.
Kim & Leslie came to our home the same weekend as Nancy & Emily. Kim, Leslie and Emily are all now married! I believe Kim and Leslie could have made it much further in the race and would have probably made good female villains had they lasted. Kim was so much fun! Their race experience was much different than ours and I think being sequestered was a better experience than subsequent seasons. The sequester was Paris. They were allowed to travel away for 2-3 days at a time! Hasn't happened since! We missed Kim and Leslie when they left the race in Paris. Nancy and Emily stayed in the race until Thailand....and we were painfully involved in their elimination. Nancy and Emily have always been very kind to us considering the outcome.
Hope that answers your questions.
Posted May 29, 2011 @ 7:09 PM
I do think that Frank could be overbearing, but I did still like him and Margarita. She was a touch cookie, that one. I also remember liking the older couple, Margaretta and her husband whose name I'm forgetting at the moment. They did quite well for themselves.
I just remember being excited by everything that happened in each episode, and being annoyed by some of the racers. Karyn and her shouting of "Lennnyyyy!!!" got old really fast. I think Lenny was over it, too, which is why he checked out. I always got the impression that he did the show for her and to rove himself to her mother, but he had no idea what he was getting himself into. What I will always recall about the two of them--aside from her shouting his name all the time and yelling at him for giving up at the Notre Dame challenge--was the way she pretty much broke up with him at the pit stop. I was like, "Dayyyyum!"
Posted May 31, 2011 @ 10:22 PM
What I think makes this season so strong, and made the series as a whole a success: the casting. Although the cast as a whole was pretty memorable (aside from maybe a few of the earliest eliminated teams) the final five teams are absolutely a coups of casting that they've never been able to accomplish since. The dynamic at the end, despite the weirdly divided endgame where Frank/Margarita and Rob/Brennan pulled a full day ahead of the pack, was spectacular. Kevin and Drew were completely endearing, and the Guidos made perfect love-to-hate-them antagonists to create some suspense at the end. Although the seventeen seasons that follow have their charms, I think that they captured lightning in a bottle with this season, with memorable locations and good casting. I will have to admit, compared to more recent seasons some of the tasks are a bit more mundane, but the personalities are unequaled. Ten years later, I can still remember the little moments of this season so well. I remember the anxiety I had watching the showdown in Beijing between Kevin and Drew and the Guidos. I remember the twinge of sadness I had when Margarita was clearly full of hope that she'd won this as we watched Rob and Brennan sprint onto the finish line.... and the slam cut to Joe and Bill in Outer Siberia.
Posted May 31, 2011 @ 11:18 PM
Joe & Bill were in Alaska, not Siberia, weren't they?
Geographically, yes. In terms of how far they were from the finish line, surrounded by the snow and whipping winds.... they might as well have been in Siberia (which was not actually visited until season 14).
Posted Nov 3, 2011 @ 4:02 PM
Posted Apr 7, 2012 @ 3:29 PM
I liked this series though the weak point was that some of the tasks where just going from A to B. And even early fast forwards were just finding somewhere and picking it up. I think they were still working out how to make this format work at times and some things like this got better towards the end of the series.
Good cast, though I think I liked those in other high positions more than those who finished in the top 2. The guy who finished second annoyed me too much, I thought he was too loud. He wasn't as bad as the other black guy who was eliminated earlier but having to hear about these people saying they were learning and being calm but actually being shown just shouting all the time was annoying. So I was happy they didn't win and a nice if not that exciting team won. But the bigger characters finished 3/4/5 or so and they really made the series for me.
Edited by starrynight71, Apr 7, 2012 @ 3:29 PM.
Posted Dec 4, 2012 @ 10:10 PM
Posted Dec 7, 2012 @ 10:29 AM
Less bunching & canned travel - Yes, we had a team that didn't get to cross the finish line. But that didn't change the overall quality of the race. So what if a team figures out a way to get way ahead? Go back to the "leaving 12 hours later". It was better. Plus, it seems more common now for the teams to be told, "You must take a taxi", "you must take this flight" when the older years you just didn't know what was going to happen.
The long run to the finish line - I think TPTB are more worried about being spotted now, but the final run to the mat, watching the emotion in Rob & Brennan, and the emotion in Frank & Margarita was television gold. That long run makes me choke up every time.
The cast - This is the gold star in TAR casting. While we had big personalities, the majority of teams seemed like people who might live next door to you. No Cowboys, Chippendales, Clowns, Hippies, Television Hosts, Reality Stars, etc. As far as I know, there was only one pair of actors. Everyone seemed in it for the adventure, not for the attention. Maybe the Guidos can answer this: Were any of the teams recruited or did they all apply? The heavy recruiting now spoils things.
Overall, because of casting and bunching, the show just feels more scripted now. And I agree with those above who said this almost had a documentary feel. The production sucks in parts and that has never ruined it for me. TAR2 - TAR5 slowly lost bits and pieces of this quality, although they retained some classic elements. After that, the races started blending together.
Posted Dec 14, 2012 @ 11:41 AM
Although the production values are much lower (AND WHY IS PHIL NOT AT THE MAT?!?!?!), I'm enjoying it as much this second time around as I did the first, and my husband is LOVING IT. I had forgotten how the tasks back them had such obvious advantages/disadvantages: "Jump off this cliff and get there quicker, or take this really long walk but be safer." Now, it's more like "groom this beard or make this gingerbread house" without any clues as to which one would be more advantageous. I also like to see the teams fretting over money and having to book flights without the advantage of using internet travel sites, like they do now.
I was so sad to see that Nancy passed away last year from ALS. She was only 56, too: so young!
Edited by bluegirl547, Dec 14, 2012 @ 11:41 AM.
Posted Dec 14, 2012 @ 6:51 PM
Posted Dec 19, 2012 @ 8:54 PM
I'm curious if Miss Molly feels the same way about Guido after the airport incident in I want to say Tunisia? The leg they were trying to get to Rome and everyone ended up with wildly different flight plans. Before that I thought they were smart and good racers with only their smugness as a flaw. After that I thought they were assholes who were still insufferably smug. Which didn't change until All-Stars when they were awesome. Also on the forums, though I didn't learn that part of it until later.
Too funny! I just got around to watching a couple more episodes tonight and I'm totally turned off by them. That performance at the airport should have got them arrested. I came here to comment about it and just saw this post.
Also, I didn't know Nancy passed away, that's so sad. I really liked her and Margaretta and they're both gone.
Posted Jan 1, 2013 @ 1:24 AM
One thought I had about, as Miss Alli called it "Departuregategate," is that it would have occured and been filmed in probably FEB/MAR of 2001. When it aired, sadly, it was a different world, which resulted in it being a more serious issue with viewers.
Edited by fester01, Jan 1, 2013 @ 1:24 AM.