This week’s episode opens with Jisela perched on the edge of the cliff
cussing out her teammates and insulting the people who hold her life in their
hands. Will she make it down the cliff? Will they vote her off? Will –
excuse me? She did? They did? Really?
Okay I’ve just been informed that something new actually happened this
week. I thought I could just do a cut-and-paste job from any of the last three
summaries. Well, leave it to Barely Moving Plotlines to ruin my night. Hold
on, won’t you, while I go check the videotape!
All right, I’m back. In the suspense-filled days leading up to this
episode, we’ve been consumed with the following burning questions:
- Will Ellen, after her humiliations on the zip line and the swimming
challenge, act appropriately humbled?
- Will ADDam be manic or depressive today?
- Will Steve get a storyline?
- Will Sophia adjust to life without her soulmate Jisela?
- Will the kids accept Jisela’s replacement?
- And who will that new cast member be? Who could it be? Man, that’s a
I’ll save you the trouble of reading further. The answers are:
- Well, she does nothing especially despicable this episode, but she’s
been getting a free ride lately relative to Jisela’s hysteria and Addam’s
idiocy, and we’re praying she’ll return to her old ways soon enough.
- Manic to the max!
- Of course not, what were you thinking?
- Not without plenty of tears!
- Not until she’s been suitably "tried by fire!"
- What do you know, it’s the same girl who’s been appearing in American
Eagle promotional photos all season – Katie. And don’t forget, her father
The episode begins with the kids brooding over Jisela’s departure.
They’re really sad! Let’s listen in:
Adam: "The place is so empty."
Ellen: "I actually miss her."
Blair: "I’m worried"
Sophia: "Damn, I almost got into her pants!"
Then we get to see that frightening clip again of Sophia in the hooded
sweatshirt bawling her eyes out. Yikes!
Yeah, the place just isn’t the same without ol’ Jisela. For one thing,
it’s a lot quieter. Nobody’s cursing at them in Spanish (well, nobody in
the RV, that is). And their phone bill has dropped precipitously.
According to Adam, Jisela’s replacement will have "two strikes against
her, because she can’t fill her shoes." Two strikes. Hmmmm. Oh, I get it,
Adam, two shoes = two strikes! Tune in next week when Adam accurately counts a
pile of spilled toothpicks: "274 toothpicks, definitely 274 – uh, oh, time
for Wapner!" Adam IS the Rainman!
So the kids get together to plan a fun, creative way to "initiate" the
new cast-member. The meeting goes like this:
Blair: So who’s got a great idea for hazing the new kid?
Adam: (raises hand)
Blair: I mean an idea NOT involving chasing her with the RV and blaring the
horn while she talks long distance on a cell phone!
Adam: (lowers his hand)
Actually, this little brainstorm is Adam’s very own creation, with an
assist from Sophia and mostly vacant stares from the rest of the crew.
Adam’s idea: make her sleep out under the stars … in a pile of (bleep)!
Adam, I bet your zany antics just killed at the Phi Delt house!
Sophia doesn’t think the new person should be allowed to come in all
"happy pappy." No, Sophia, didn’t you get the memo? It’s not
"happy-pappy," it’s "chilly-willy-will." For chrissakes, get with
Ellen does a confessional that makes her face looks so swollen and huge
that I can’t even catch what she said after multiple playbacks, but I think
she’s having second thoughts about the initiation ritual. And she’s
sitting 3 inches in front of the camera lens.
The scene fades to black as Adam, utterly delighted with himself, can’t
suppress his staccato Beavis & Butthead-style laugh: Huh, huh-huh,
The next morning brings a knock at the Winnie door. All the kids are
sleeping (it is only half past noon, after all), so Steve, desperate for a
storyline, decides to open the door. Why, it’s a representative of MTV, and
she’s offering Steve a suitcase full of cash to leave the show early –
Actually, it’s Katie, who is a tad too perky for the late-rising RRers.
She makes a great first impression by busting past Steve and accosting
everyone in their bunks, calling them lazy, telling them they suck and doling
out nicknames like she’s George Dubya. She calls Blair "knapsack," Adam
"droopy pants," and – I thought this one was a little extreme – she
calls Sophia "carpet-muncher!" Now, that ain’t right.
Katie arrives bearing the crest marked "endurance" (boy are they gonna
need it), a high-pitched squeal, and a major attitude. "I walk in like
I’ve been there the whole time, and that’s the way I am," she explains.
Well, it’s about time we had someone on one of these shows who’s just
keepin’ it real and tellin’ it like it is and not frontin’ all the
time!! Am I right, peeps?!?
Adam uncharacteristically dispenses with the pleasantries and introduces
Katie to her first "mission" – sleeping under the STAIRS. Just like that
Bad Ronald guy. Unfortunately for her it’s actually STARS, and she’s,
like, TOTALLY afraid of the DARK! Good thing it’s not last season, because
the Roadmaster would definitely have a field day with that little neurosis!
When it’s explained that it’s not really an official mission but
Adam’s own little brainchild (okay, brain-embryo, or brain-stem-cell, if you
will), we see a quick flash of hostility from Katie, definitely the makings of
some delicious catfights to come! Roowwwr!
Adam/Rainman offers Katie a substitute mission: "spend 15 minutes in the
bathroom after I drop a hoose." (Uh-oh, fart – definitely farted –
Hoose? (According to close caption.) What is that, Canadian?
Finally the kids make it to what has to be their second, maybe third
mission of the season (is the blistering pace killing you, too?) and it’s:
"Base Diving!" Now, I know what you’re thinking – you’re thinking
this looks an awful lot like bungie jumping. Well, that’s where you’re
wrong. Because instead of plunging straight down, they SWING down in an arc!
And just to add some spice, they have to go through FIRE on the way down.
Now, again, I’m way ahead of you and you’re probably saying to yourself,
"this sounds a lot like the ring of fire they went through the last couple
of seasons." No, actually, this is a WALL of fire – totally different
concept. Man, are you dense.
Their mission mayor is a giant potato-headed German named Stefan,
representing Sports Unlimited (Company motto: "For the last time, it’s NOT
bungie jumping, dammit!")
Stefan says, "You ah heah to get your cwest of couwage … and vee are
heah to PUMP (clap) you UUUUP!"
Now here is where my VCR started cutting out, so I only caught snippets of
dialogue (all snippets certified 100% accurate):
"Everything’s really tight … I’m not going to slip out … smear
Vaseline all over … safe … trust me." All right, I guess we’re going
back to one of Adam’s missions!
Adam is picked to go first because he’s the "most courageous"
(meaning he has the least to live for). And he asks this season’s version of
"Has anyone ever died-died-died doing this?"
As usual with recent seasons, the mission is the most predictable and least
interesting part of the show, so we’ll just cut to the chase: nobody dies!
AND – get this – nobody catches on fire either!!
So they plunge, they swing, they scream, they cuss they cry,
blah-blah-blah. Someone does another reality show cross-promotion by
mentioning the "fear factor." Ellen does that squeal that she usually
reserves for extreme emergencies like when she steps in bird guano or sees
someone wearing a brown purse with black shoes.
So now we come to all the obligatory foreshadowing that they like to pound
into our skulls like we’re a bunch of 11-year-old dimwits that really are
their target audience come to think of it … why are we here again?
Basically all the little morons question whether Katie’s gonna come
through for the team, can she "prove herself," will she
"fail" the mission, etc. Um, exactly how do you fail at falling?
They just unhook you and you fall, right? Anyway, she’s about to go and –
oops, CONTINUED NEXT WEEK? Oh, no!
Actually no, it looks like they’re going to finish this one in a single
episode. So Katie goes (whew!) and they win their damned courage. Now if
scarecrow – I mean, Adam – can only win a brain …
Back on the Winnie, Katie tries to make peace with Sophia, who’s
obviously still missing Jisela. Or is she? This excerpt from her autobiography
on the MTV sites suggests otherwise, and I am not making this up: "never
trust a big butt and a smile." Naah, can’t be talking about Jisela –
she never smiled!
On an unrelated tangent (as most tangents are), I give you this second
excerpt: "Hey, wuz up everybody? It's the straight-up crazy-bananas chick
with the ever-changing, illmatic afro named Sophia." Now let me get this
straight, she named her afro Sophia? Doesn’t that get confusing around the
Mom: Sophia, please pass the salt.
Sophia: Are you talking to me or to my illmatic Afro?
Moving on, Katie quickly demonstrates her astute observational powers by
noting that Adam is a "jerk." She picks this up as Adam continues his
subtle seduction of Ellen by calling her a "dork" and a "slut" and
doing that Beavis/Butthead laugh. Well, Ellen, Katie’s figured it out in 24
hours – how much longer before Adam crosses that Maginot line of yours?
Next thing we know, Adam’s at the wheel and he goes and runs over a
Spaniard! This causes Katie to almost spill the ever-present big gulp in her
hand and to lash out at Adam’s (bleep) driving. "Shut the (bleep) up,"
Adam/Rainman says. "I’m an excellent driver! Excellent. K-Mart Sucks!"
Later on, Adam refuses to let go of the initiation thing. Who says the
kid’s got ADD? Sounds more like OCD.
He keeps suggesting various initiation rituals, but I think he takes it too
far when he comes out of the bathroom with a toilet brush in his hand. No,
Adam, this is the initiation of Katie. You’re thinking of "The Initiation
of Sara," the vastly underrated 1970s made-for-television movie starring the
estimable Miss Linda Blair in a tour de force performance as an innocent girl
who suffers at the hands of her tormentors in a brutal and vaguely erotic
girls’ reform school.
As he continues to harangue Katie, the rest of the crew dissolves into the
woodwork. Except for Steve – he IS the woodwork. They ultimately abandon
their support for Adam’s Cool Idea, leaving him groping for an appropriate
division of the handsome reward between Katie and his new best friend, Jisela.
Katie and Adam take it to the roof of the Winnie and it’s a true meeting
of the minds. Adam's a regular Truman at Potsdam. Always a good sign, Adam
begins referring to himself in the third person. (Okay, what now – multiple
personality disorder?) Katie feels Adam has changed since those heady days of
dressing him up in drag during the casting special. She feels he picks on the
girls. For his part, Adam wants Katie to know he’s not the asshole he’s
been (not "seemed to be," mind you, or "came across as," but, yes, the
asshole he has "been!") Thank you, Adam!
After an extended period of the usual nonsensical blather, everything gets
tied up in a nice, neat bow. Conflict resolved! Adam admits that Katie
deserves her spot here, she’s part of the group now, and she’s earned his
respect. Katie suggests they go for a beer. Oh, happy day!
The verdict on Katie? She has much potential – possibly combining the
over-aggressive, grating personality of last year’s Kathryn and the
sneakiness of a Veronica. We can only hope.
Next week: (News Flash!) Adam treats Ellen like dirt!
Archive > Television > Road Rules > Season 10: The Quest