This was a fun first episode. I don't watch BB so I don't know any of them except for Rachel from her previous TAR appearances and she's never bothered me much although I might need earplugs for when she and her sister are doing a Talking Head. I also feel bad for any dogs who might be within earshot because good lord are these two ever screechy.
Biggest surprise is that Colin and Christie are still together. I would have guessed those two parted company years ago and never think of the other. But together with two kids and they seem really happy, so good on them. The meditation room made me snort laugh though.
I'm another one who can't remember Art and JJ, but I've found a lot of TAR teams in the last several years to be not memorable so I'm not surprised. I only remember Tyler and Korey as being on the race, but nothing else about them.
I loved Floyd but not Becca on their first season. I don't even remember her being pissy with him when he lost his passport; I only remember that she was really kind and supportive in their last episode when he was dehydrated and couldn't complete the task. So I think she's a good person, but she has an annoying personality. I went back and forth on her in this episode. Right off the bat, she looked directly in the camera and bellowed, "DOOOHKYOOOO JAPAAAAAAN!" and I was like, ugh, she's back, but then she and Floyd were so cute in their TH, joking about dating and what not, so on balance, I like this team.
The Garanimals Afghanimals! I always loved them and now there's an offscreen Pablo the Cat who stands to benefit, so this is the team I'm rooting for to win.
Bret and Chris are okay. They played fairly lackluster games on Survivor and I don't expect much from them here, but they're okay. Oh, I said that already. I can't get excited in any direction about them.
I'm not a Rupert fan by any means, but I feel sort of tender about him now that he's aging and still wearing that terrible shirt and being his consistently mediocre self. In person, I'd cross the street to avoid him so that he couldn't condescendingly explain something to me that I already understand far better than he does, but I don't think he's a bad person. I don't want them to win, but I hope they get far enough into the race that it's not humiliating for him. I could have done without seeing his unpixelated junk in the bodysuit though.
Corrine and Eliza are the only two I don't like. Corrine described herself as "100% that bitch," which is accurate and nothing to be proud of, but people like her always are. Eliza is worse to me, though. On both her Survivor seasons, she was picked on to some extent by the others and I get the feeling that she goes through life like that, but instead of it making her empathetic and kind, it makes her a wannabe mean girl. She's like the kid in school who gets bullied and then the bullies decide to adopt her and make her their minion and she's all for it, picking on the fat kid. Oh! She even did that this episode talking about Rupert having a beer belly, then they cut to a clip of Rupert putting something on his sandwich and asking Laura if she had more mayonnaise. I think this was supposed to make me laugh at Fat Rupert, but instead it made me feel bad for him. It will be fun if Corrine and Eliza turn on each other, then flame out spectacularly.
That was funny to me only because most people in Tokyo speak at least a little English. When I was in Japan, my Japanese was so plodding that the locals would usually take pity on me and start speaking English. Once when I was trying to call the airline to confirm my flight home, I messed up the city code and ended up getting some random person's house and even that person spoke English. However, if I saw a bunch of maniacs running around screaming, "DOES ANYONE SPEAK ENGLISH?" I also would pretend I didn't.
A few years ago, there was an American reality show called I Survived a Japanese Game Show that had Americans living in Japan and competing on a game show. The winning teams got rewards like dinner at a traditional inn or visiting a shrine, but I thought the "punishments" for the losing teams were more fun and would make good tasks for TAR. There were things like working at a pachinko parlor, making mochi, or harvesting seaweed. More day-to-day stuff and not necessarily touristy things.