Amazing Race ×2 ... again

Just concluded watching the first episode of Amazing Race S12 on AXN and this marks another round of double Amazing Race's for probably the next two months or so (The Amazing Race Asia S3 is coming to its fourth episode this week). I'm a fan of the series and have watched every single season of TAR and TARA and find each version has its own unique thing to offer.

This time round, TARA3 wins hands down in terms of content and can clearly call itself the "toughest race ever" based on first episode impressions. Heck! rumour has it that even the production staff fell ill during the filming of the race due to the stressful conditions.

The first episode of TAR12 was slow, boring, lenghty and didn't really work the competitors so far. The theme of the show felt like "grouping the teams" as each point in the race the teams were being segregated into groups that left for the next portion of the race at different time intervals. The sole challenge of TAR12 episode one is the choice in the detour - to climb down cargo net or crawl up the steps ... kinda lame IMO. It almost felt as if the producers ran out of ideas.
Compare that to the first episode of TARA3 - first challenge at the very start was to devour an entire bowl of bugs (containing fried scorpions, maggots, worms, frogs, grasshoppers etc) which I estimate amounted to maybe 800gms. Then its was to wash an entire two-storey passenger bus (a task which took most of the afternoon and night) followed by a pitch dark hunt for clues on temple grounds. An 18 hour bus ride later, it was the detour to race or rice - racing buggys or pounding rice resulting in muddy bodies or blistering hands. Definately much more exciting - even episode two was an extended length one since the leg lasted over 48 hours!!
Rants? TARA3 is the first season to be filmed entirely in FullHD 1080p but AFAIK, no carrier is actually broadcasting in HD, let alone FullHD - what a waste (but I could be wrong). TAR12 probably has more eye-candy in terms of competitors but TARA3 doesn't lose out by much there (but then Pailin and Natalie were eliminated last week). Competitors on TAR12 seem to be starting of pretty chummy except for one particular moment between Sarah with Nick and Starr. There hasn't been a breakdown in the first episode of TAR12 but Mai and Oliver have already showed their true colours during the end of the first episode of TARA3. Things might change as TAR12 catches up with more episodes, but for now TARA3 gets my vote for the better Amazing Race.

If only I can remember which teams go with which race (same prob last time with TAR12 and TARA2) ...

UPDATE 02102008 : Forgot about this ... whoever the subtitler is in ASTRO is doing a really bad job. Misunderstood words and sentences ("I'm so dumb" actually became something like "Aku sungguh gelap" or I'm so dark) and his/her crazy-ass spelling (why in heck would a simple word like Cyclo be subtitled as Xich Lo?). There is no need to translate and subtitle every single thing on screen, especially when the subs start to intrude into the actual screen action part. I cringe when I read the subs during the second viewing of episodes.
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