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Marc Mason is a freelance writer based in Tempe, AZ.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004  

I should have known it was coming.

CBS' publicity machine had really cranked up in the last week or so, and we began to see AMAZING RACE contestant and "little person" Charla Faddoul popping up all over the place. Charla was the inspirational story of the summer; equally cunning, charming, and determined, she had set out to change peoples' perceptions about what those who are short in stature could do. She succeeded wildly.

Partially, she was helped by the fact that her racing partner, cousin Mirna, acted the part of weakling and halfwit too often. While Mirna was one of the few people in the five years of the show who actively tried to appreciate and enjoy the opportunities the race provided, all too often it was Charla who bailed out the duo, either by eating two pounds of caviar in one sitting or in carrying a slab of beef that was damned near the same size as her.

Their continual squaring off against the asisnine and hot-tempered Colin and his way-too-good-for-him girlfriend Christie made for interesting drama as well. In short, Charla and Mirna make for great fucking television. So like I said, I should have been suspicious when Charla began appearing more in the media over the last week.

Because last night, the race's foibles caught up to them, and they finished last at the pit stop, leaving them eliminated from the contest. I wanted to throw things at my TV.

No more Charla. No more Mirna trying to cop a feel off of beleaguered host Phil Keoghan. No more watching someone with all that heart and determination succeed in the face of overwhelming odds. The Race continues, and I with it... but it has a lot less personality.

3:22 PM

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