"The Amazing Race" and Natural Disasters

So I don’t usually write about the television shows that I watch here, but I’m a big fan of The Amazing Race. Wasn’t Kynt and Vyxsin’s performance tonight just the worst performance on a leg ever?

But what I was really thinking about as they left Japan was the earthquake/tsunami elsewhere in Japan the other day. Obviously, it occurred weeks after the show was filmed, but just after the episode in Japan was aired. That made me think about how the earthquake in New Zealand corresponded with the airing of the episode that, while it wasn’t set in New Zealand, was about as close as you can get to New Zealand without being either in New Zealand or in the water. Is China next on the natural disasters list? Should rescue teams in China be standing by?

Obviously, this is just coincidence and not something really significant, but sometimes coincidences can be interesting.

6 thoughts on “"The Amazing Race" and Natural Disasters

  1. Danny

    Actually, its not that much of a coincidence. I saw the irony as well, but I took it a step further and researched it. I love the show as well. This is what I found out…

    Amazing Race Season 18: Narita, Japan, episode 3 – third week, coincides with the Narita-area megaquake. Another twist, the name of the episode was “”We Had a Lot of Evil Spirits Apparently”.

    Amazing Race Season 16: Santiago, Chile and Concepcion, Chile, episodes 1, 2, and 3, as the third week was airing coincides with the Concepcion-area megaquake. Episode titled “Run Like Scalded Dogs!” Some of the houses the contestants painted as part of their detour ironically ended up on stock footage on CNN, and the houses were in ruins. Same street, different photographer, landscape forever changed.

    Amazing Race, Season 14: Guangxi, Beijing, China, episodes 9, 10, 11 were the three episodes that aired during the month of May to end the season. A few weeks after the season ended, the area visited by TAR in Guangxi was devastated by an earthquake. Episode titled “No More Mr. Nice Guy”.

    Amazing Race, Season 10: Vietnam: Episode 3 – third week… while it did coincide (the airing and the event) it wasn’t long after filming that Typhoon Xangsane hit the Phillipines and Vietnam; episode titled “”Oh, Wow! It’s Like One of Those Things You See on TV!”

    Amazing Race, Season 9: Darwin, Australia: Episodes 9, 10, 11. Episode 9, filmed in Darwin, aired the same month that part of Australia was stricken with major wildfires. Episode titled: “Do You Know How Much Running I Did Today, Phil?”

    Amazing Race, Season 8: New Orleans, Lousiana, Episodes 4, 5. Aired just after Hurricane Katrina destroyed New Orleans. Episodes titled “Think Like An Office Chair” and “”We’re Getting Out of the Country, Girls”

    Amazing Race, Season 7: London, England: Episodes 10, 11. At the close of the season, and just a few weeks before the London Underground and double decker bus bombings, TAR arrived in London and their adventure in London began with one of their clues being tucked inside an “abandoned” luggage sitting in the train station, unattended. We live in a politically correct world and no that unattended baggage is never a good thing in any transportation station. This was, ironically, how the London bombings occurred -with three bombs being tucked away in unattended luggage sitting in the train stations. Episodes titled “We Got A Gnome! We Got A Gnome!” and “The Devil Made Me Do It”.

    Amazing Race, Season 6: Colombo, Sri Lanka: Episodes 9 and 10, filmed in Sri Lanka, aired just after the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami devastated the coast of Sri Lanka on Boxing Day in 2004. The Episode 9 detour for the episode was inside Fort Galle, which was saved from the devastation of the tsunami, but the city of Galle was destroyed by the tsunami, killing thousands. The Detour in this leg of the race occurred at a coconut plantation in Galle which was erased from the map by the tsunami. Episode 9 was titled “Tell My Mom I Love Her”

    Amazing Race, Season 5: Phillipines: Episodes 11, 12, A series of typhoons hit El Nido, in the Phillipines, the same three week stretch that TAR was airing the episodes filmed in that part of the country. There were a total of 4 typhoons that devastated the country in back to back succession in 2004, with Typhoon Winnie being the worst just after Episode 12, titled “You’ve Just Made Me a Millionaire”

    Amazing Race, Season 4: Mumbai, India: Episode 6, titled “”I Could Have Never Been Prepared For What I’m Looking At Right Now”, aired after the terrorist attacks in Mumbai that killed 52 people with twin bombings. One of the taxi car bombings went off at the Gateway of India, a famous Colonial era arch built by the sea. During that episode, the pit stop for the race was directly beneath the Gateway of India arch, precisely where the car bombing occurred.

    Amazing Race, Season 1: New York City, New York: Episode 1, titled “The Race Begins”, airs the same week of the September 11th terrorist attacks on New York. The race begins in New York’s Central Park, and one of the first scenes in the show involves Phil explaining the premise of this new show with the contestants meeting in Central Park. In several shots, the Twin Towers feature prominently – with cameras panning past them as they focus in on the Amazing Race bus… several shots where Phil is on a roof in Manhattan, explaining the series premise, as several sweeping shots show famous NY landmarks, including the WTC in the background.

    1. James

      Wow, that’s a lot, I didn’t realise there were so many such coincidences. I did remember New Orleans in season 8, but I didn’t know and/or forgot about the rest. Very interesting…

  2. l carter

    also noticed this…. seems like Phil is always doing a piece where he comments on the recent tragedies.

  3. TexarkanaBaby

    Glad to know I am not the only one who’s noticed an eerie connection between The Amazing Race and “events” that have happened at the locations the show has visited! Mighty strange timing for sure!

    I began paying attention to the “connection” between natural disasters and The Amazing Race when Sri Lanka was hit by the Tsunami. I remember hearing about the crowded train that was washed off the tracks and thinking that the contestants had been on that very train. I was thankful that the tsunami didn’t hit while the show was filming. Then came Katrina and TAR had just been there, too! Again I thought, WOW, interesting timing!

    I was only thinking of natural disasters in conjunction with The Amazing Race but now after reading Danny’s post that included terrorists acts connections, I got a chill down my spine and a sick feeling in my stomach.

    And now the latest with Japan! Very strange indeed.

    The Amazing Race is one of my favorite shows. I just hope these “coincidences” do not continue other wise countries might start banning the show all together!

    Be safe and have fun, Phil. I will keep every one connected with TAR in my prayers.

  4. James

    Here’s another one for the list… last week’s show episode was, in part, from Bangkok, and Bangkok now is being threatened with flooding.

  5. Cindy Kirsch

    Ok I too have noticed these WEIRD coincidences between TAR, and natural disasters and terrorists acts over the years, and have joked about them. But I am starting to consider it not so funny…Now March 2014 Malaysia Airlines flight 370 disappears from radar..Now just after a week, since the disapearance, while watching TAR, the teams fly into Kuala Lumpur the exact place where the plane took off from???


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