TV Time with Bob

Robert Taylor

“The Amazing Race Family Edition”: Meltdown Alert!

CBS, Tuesdays at 9

Well, that Weaver family is crazy, isn’t it? Having a complete mental breakdown because they had to travel on a bus to an unknown destination for eight hours (with a pit stop, no less) is a bit much for me.

They brushed off the fact that their mother got run over by a speeding Amish cart two episodes ago, but an eight-hour bus ride makes them go screaming and singing as they do ballet moves in a gasoline station parking lot? Uh huh.

I might seem like I’m being harsh on the Weavers, but it’s not like the things the teams have to do have been hard. All the previous seasons of “The Amazing Race” have been so fun to watch because, as a viewer, you pick out which detours you would take and which roadblocks you could handle, but here no such luck.

Shelling shrimp? Boring.

Going 3 G’s in NASA’s version of a Ferris wheel? The contestants could still put their hands up. I want to see vomiting!

Logging onto AOL for a special e-mail? Snore.

Where’s the fun? Where’s the excitement? If host Phil Keogan can do the roadblock while introducing it, you know it can’t be that hard!

Another roadblock for viewers is that there are so many contestants to keep track of that you can’t sympathize with any of them until at least halfway through the season. At this point I can’t even identify any of them without checking the CBS Web site, and the fact that they refer to one another by the cities they live in instead of the people they are is both annoying and confusing.


“Desperate Housewives”: The Enemy of My Enemy Is My Friend

ABC, Sundays at 9

Oh, Bree. She’s surrounded by users like Andrew and George, yet she isn’t smart enough to realize that no one around her loves her.

Oh, Susan. Remember when you were the most lovable character on television? Now you are completely unsympathetic because of your lies and deceit and I can’t wait to see you get your comeuppance.

Oh, Lynette. Stop making mountains out of anthills. Your kids will get over the fact that you are at work for eight hours a day in a week, and everyone has imaginary friends.

It’s because of these shortcomings that I am now most sympathetic with Gabrielle, who was always my least favorite housewife in the first season.

At least she’s honest with Carlos with her fears about him and their marriage. At least she is trying to be a better person. At least she doesn’t dwell on every little problem and detail. Who knew that one season later she would be the role model for the rest of the ladies to live up to?

Contact ALL correspondent Robert Taylor at [email protected].