Characters: The Amazing Race
Page for the eclectic cast of The Amazing Race
, with teams ranging from endearing and sweet to intense and cutthroat to simply batshit crazy.Warning
: The contestants are listed according to how they placed in the race. Beware spoilers!
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Hosts and Local "Staff"
Phil Keoghan (US Host)
The host of the Amazing Race US series. His main role, aside from exposition, is checking in each team at the end of each leg, with the last team to arrive possibly being Eliminated From The Race
. He is normally impartial to the racers, though every so often, he engages in Witty Banter
with certain teams. Popularly regarded as eye candy by the fanbase.
- Aside Glance: After Jessica & John's idiotic elimination in Season 22 (where they still held their Express Pass) and John's rather carefree Elimination Statement, a rather shocked Phil turns to the camera, shrugs, and says, "Oy vey!"
- Author Appeal: Phil is a biking enthusiast, which helps explain why every season has at least one bicycle challenge. Most notable in the Season 20 premiere, where the teams bike to the Starting Line.
- Call Back: At Season 24's Finish Line, when all the teams were gathered at the mat for the final cast shot, Phil threw Cord's hat, just as Cord had done in the Unfinished Business finale.
- Catch Phrase: Several, including "The last to check in may/will be eliminated" and some variant of "You're the last team to arrive. I'm sorry to tell you you've been Eliminated From The Race", at Pit Stops, and "fell by the wayside," in recaps.
- He used to have several in regards to explaining the tasks, such as,"A Roadblock is a task only one team member can perform," and "A Detour is a choice between two tasks, each with its own pro and cons," though as the exposition was cut down, these stopped being used.
- Character Development: Starting with Season 9, more of Phil's personality was shown, allowing him to be more than just the guy who explained the tasks and greeted teams at the Pit Stop.
- Devil's Advocate: On the mats, especially if you watch the extended Mat Chats online, Phil has a tendency to prod teams with questions and possible moves that might or might not be towards the teams' best interests, but would hypothetically make for a more interesting race.
- Dramatic Pause: Phil does this quite a lot, both in his narration and his appearances at the end of each episode telling contestants whether they're eliminated or not. Multiple teams have actually broken down in giggles in the middle of his pause and told him to just get on with it already.
- Fanservice: His appearance in underwear to announce the Russian underpants run in Season 14 has reached memetic status.
- Fascinating Eyebrow: His most prominent trait, to the point he used it to tell Gary & Mallory in Season 17 that they had finished 2nd. It's become so iconic, it almost could be considered his Signature Move.
- Fun with Subtitles: Season 24, episode 2, seven teams hit the mat within minutes of each othernote . In the middle of it, Phil got messed up and told Dave & Connor they were team number five, and "Dave & Connor, 5th Place" popped up on the bottom of the screen, only to be immediately crossed out, the "4th Place" swept in from the left side of the screen, bumping it aside as the teams corrected Phil.
- Game Show Host
- The Glomp: Phil has had this done to him over the course of several seasons, especially in Season 21 when he was Glomped by a woman covered in fish juices.
- Manly Tears: The only time Phil has broken down on the mat was during Charla's Elimination Statement.
- Mr. Exposition: Only in the early seasons, when much of his dialogue would be spent explaining the rules of the game and the position/what was going on with the teams during the travel portions of the game.
- One Steve Limit: One place where the show does play it straight, as there has not been a single competitor named "Phil" in 25 seasons.
- Recurring Traveler
- The Stoic: Mostly in the early seasons, though this is more of an effort to remain neutral than anything else. However, sometimes his neutrality would break and his emotions and opinions would show through, such as in Season 6, when he cautioned Jonathan to talk to his wife after he shoved her for coming in second at a Pit Stop. By All-Stars, his stoicism was pretty much gone (except when he is checking teams in, and deliberately uses it to freak them out), though his neutrality did remain.
- This Is A Race: Phil will bring this up in interviews all the time. He's actually a proponent of the Yield/U-Turn, and has voiced his wonder that there are teams who don't want to use it to hinder another team.
- Took a Shortcut: He always manages to film various promos at task locations and then still be well ahead of the Racers in order to meet them at each Pit Stop.
- Season 25 changed this, while staying within the trope, as each episode showed him recording promos at task locations while teams were running up to the clue box.
- Wham Line: In-Universe. No team wants to be standing on the mat and hear Phil say, "However..."
- Witty Banter: A way to determine his personal favorite racers, as he will often spend more time discussing the race with them after announcing their positions.
Allan Wu (Asia and China Host)
Host of The Amazing Race Asia
, China Rush
, and China
Grant Bowler (Australia Host)
Host of The Amazing Race Australia
. New Zealand born actor, probably best known for his roles on Australian drama Blue Heelers
and the Syfy
. Formerly the host of the Australian version of The Mole
Jon Montgomery (Canada Host)
Host of The Amazing Race Canada
. He won the gold medal in the men's skeleton the the Winter Olympics in Vancouver in 2010.
Pit Stop Greeters
At the end of each leg, people from the country currently visited will appear alongside the host to welcome the racers to their country. They usually sport an exaggerated wardrobe to emphasize their culture. Has included everything from local celebrities, mayors, and even Phil's own father.
- Call Back: During the Unfinished Business premiere, fans were welcomed to Australia by the town crier who was the Pit Stop Greeter from the show's first visit to Australia back in Season 2.
- The Cameo:
- Paula Taylor from Asia Season 2 appeared as the Greeter on the first leg of Asia 3.
- Melody Chen from Asia Season 1 appeared as the Greeter when Season 25 visited Singapore for their 9th leg.
- Chekhov's Gunman:
- In Season 17, all the greeters were wearing hats. In the finale, identifying the greeters and their hats became the subject of the Final Exam Finale puzzle.
- A similar thing happened in Season 21, when special emphasis was placed on the greeters saying "hello" and "goodbye" in their native languages (with even "hai" getting subtitles) in a way that viewers took notice and (correctly) suspected that the racers would get quizzed on it at the end. The task ended up taking two and a half hours as all three teams pretty much said that they paid attention to everything but the greeting, even though Phil told them on every leg that each phrase meant "hello" and "goodbye".
- The first Canadian version of the race did the same thing as Season 17 except with provincial flowers they were wearing.
- Australia v New Zealand also had a Final Exam Finale Roadblock where teams had to pick out something worn or held by all nine Greeters.
- Chewing the Scenery: Some greeters put on quite a show, such as the Australian greeter in Season 2 with his loud bell-ringing and the Hungarian greeter in Season 6 complete with whip.
- Costume Porn
- Culture Equals Costume
- Everyone Looks Sexier If French: Or Indian, or African, or... (Not all greeters qualify as Fanservice, but those that do are this.)
- Mythology Gag: When the second leg of Australia v New Zealand visited Cambodia, the greeter, though a different woman, was dressed the same as the greeter from Season 15, leg 4note .
- Nice Hat
- Share Phrase: Welcome to [current city, country].
- Real-Life Relative: Invoked in Season 13, as Phil's father was a greeter for a New Zealand leg.
- Whole Costume Reference
Several tasks have involved a "judge", either to check the racers' answers or to subjectively judge their performance; when correct, the racers will be given their next clue. These typically are locals (to the current location) and while most do their job in stride, others relish the moment...
- Beehive Hairdo: Miss Rose, the judge for the trailer setting task in the Unfinished Business finale, had a spectacular one that did not budge an inch despite wind constantly destroying the work of all the teams.
- Chewing the Scenery: And how!
- Season 21's second Moscow leg had a Roadblock where the team member had to take a test about time zones to be graded by a judge, who took great pleasure in announced repeated failures, as well as relishing the moment when they actually got it correct.
- Culture Equals Costume
- Drill Sergeant Nasty: The judge at the Buckingham Palace Detour in Season 25, who chewed out all the teams when they failed to correctly "change the guard." Even when they did the task correctly, he was still mean.
- Figure It Out Yourself: In many cases, if a racer does not complete a task correctly the judge is not allowed to tell them what they did wrong.
- Funny Foreigner: Many, mostly deliberate. Usually because they're Chewing the Scenery and overplaying their roles.
- Ha Ha Ha No: Season 15, the judge at the Estates Theater in Prague would do this when the player doing the Roadblock handed them the wrong item.
- Hates Being Touched: The judge at the Buckingham Palace Detour in Season 25, who looked disgusted when Kym Glomped him, and denied Amy & Maya when they attempted it.
- Large Ham: The Japanese Game Show host for tasks in Seasons 15, 20, and 23 so very much.
- The Mean Brit: The judge at the Buckingham Palace Detour in Season 25. See Drill Sergeant Nasty.
- Monks Are Funny: The monks during the calligraphy Roadblock in Season 24 who borrowed Jet & Cord's hats during the task, especially the monk who stood next to Jet and stared at him while Jet did his Roadblock.
- Recurring Character: The show has done three Japanese game show tasks, Roadblocks in Seasons 15 and 20, and a Detour in Season 23, and they've had the same man host all three tasks.
- Spanner in the Works: In the Season 15 finale, Brian & Erika had finished the poker chip counting task, however, the judge made a mistake counting that prevented them from moving on. There's no telling how this affected the final standings.
- This Is Gonna Suck: The first Moscow leg in Season 21 involved a synchronized swimming Detour. When James & Abba arrived, the judge gave an Aside Glance and said, "I'm already afraid."
Racers by Season