After 13 seasons (only 1 of which I watched I think), The Amazing Racehas me inexplicably hooked. I don’t know why I did it but the other day I just had to watch the first episode of the season on Now here I am, 2 days and 8 episodes later, waiting anxiously for Sunday’s new episode. I’d forgotten how much fun this show is, and I can always afford to watch yet another show! You already know about my love for Nick and Starr if you read this week’s obsessions list, but here’s where I stand on the rest of this year’s runners:

I’m not sure whether I just prefer people who chose to run the race with family (seeing as the siblings are my favourite team) but I absolutely love mother/son combo Toni and Dallas. Toni is incredibly impressive not only running the race at her age but keeping up with her super-athletic son. She’s tough and together and willing to try anything. And Dallas! 1) he gets serious points just for running with his mother, not to mention singing her praises and telling her how proud he is every other minute. 2) he’s got a crush on Starr (easily the most deserving of all the girls), which is adorable. This dark horse team has definite winning potential, coming in close to the top every single week. If the show doesn’t end with a predictable Nick and Starr win, I’d really love to see these 2 take the prize home (a distinct possibility, remember that power couple Rob and Amber didn’t win).

I also really liked the nerdy best friends who were eliminated week 3. Some of the smartest contestants, Mark & Bill made their only stupid mistake and misread a clue, resulting in a game-ending 30 minute time penalty.

Misreading the rules seem to be a common theme in this season. My absolute least favourite team, Kelly and Christy, misread them all the time, making stupid mistakes while talking non-stop about how smart and resourceful they are. Their proudest achievements are their divorces and they always talked about how their ex-husbands used to make them iron tablecloths. They called frat boy team Andrew and Dan “Dandrew”, wore short shorts to religious nations, yelled at cab drivers for not speaking English and accused Starr of having sabotaged their sports bras. Your basic “God, do I have to watch these people?” nightmare.

Other morons include overly competitive and irrational Sarah and her abusive hippy boyfriend Terence, the kind of people who accuse the other players of being rude for not stopping to say hi but then show absolutely no respect for cab drivers, shop clerks and other members of the service industry in countries that they visit. They also called each other “babe” incessantly, which drove me nuts.

And in the “You are annoying and or dumb but well-meaning so I don’t mind as much” category are southern belles Marisa and Brooke, frat boys Andrew and Dan and separated couple Ken and Tina.

And the couples I have no opinion about because they weren’t around long and/or were boring when they were: Aja and Ty, Anthony and Stephanie, and Anita and Arthur.

The good news is that with this week’s episode marking (finally) the elimination of Terence and Sarah, the only people still in the race are a) my favourites and b) people who I don’t mind one bit.

4 teams remain. Bumbling frat boys Andrew and Dan won’t last much longer, leaving only flawed but functional separated couple Ken and Tina standing in the way of one of my favourite teams winning the million dollars. I’m hoping that it comes down to Toni and Dallas vs. Nick and Starr, at which point the later will probably win (deservedly so) but I kind of wish the former would, ’tis poetical.