It's time to hit the road again on The Amazing Race — with plenty of familiar faces. The CBS reality hit returns Sunday with 11 veteran teams who had never won before to settle, as the season's subtitle says, some Unfinished Business.
"These are teams that have been so incredibly popular that it was an opportunity to bring back some favorite teams that have favorite stories," host Phil Keoghan tells TVGuide.com. "They're teams that have really been walking around with the 'woulda, coulda, shoulda' ever since they got kicked off. It's like, enough moaning; come back and give it another shot and no more excuses."
Check out photos from The Amazing Race
But casting Unfinished Business — the show's second all-star outing after Season 11 — was as hard as designing the Race itself. For one, Season 13 wound up not being represented at all, even though fan favorites Toni and Dallas, who lost their passports, seemed like shoo-ins. "It really comes down to whether you think that story of theirs is really stronger than that of anyone we've got," Keoghan says. "There are a lot of other teams, but I feel pretty confident that the teams we've got have the best stories and the best motivation for coming back."
So why are these 11 also-rans the cream of the crop? Keoghan explains the show's picks below.
Grey’s Anatomy, Glee
Dramas Grey's Anatomy and Mad Men and the freshman comedies Glee and Modern Family were among the nominees for the 21st annual GLAAD Media awards.
Also in the running for best drama series: Brothers & Sisters, True Blood and Skins. And the other best comedy series nominees...
Ericka Dunlap and Brian Kleinschmidt
Brian Kleinschmidt and Ericka Dunlap, both 27, caught a few breaks on The Amazing Race, but their luck ran out in Las Vegas when they lost an early lead to come in third place. "It was very discouraging to know we were in last place yet again at the poker chips when we got there second, but it just wasn't meant to be for us," Ericka, a former Miss America, tells TVGuide.com. See what else the couple, who have been married for two years, has to say about their Race game plan, their spats and more.
Sam and Dan McMillen
Brothers Sam and Dan McMillen argued all the way until the end of The Amazing Race, coming up just shy — 10 minutes to be exact. "The truth is, I don't think we fought any more than anyone else," Sam, 23, tells TVGuide.com. "All the other teams had the exact same experience. Ours just happened to be the ones that got shone. We were perfectly fine afterward." The two are also perfectly fine with Harlem Globetrotter Big Easy after Dan, 21, left him hanging last week. Find out what else the two had to say about their time, their "villain" edit and more.
Meghan Rickey and Cheyne Whitney
What happened in Vegas remained a well-kept secret — one that was very hard to keep for Amazing Race champs Meghan Rickey and Cheyne Whitney. The 23-year-olds, who have been dating for five years, overcame a face-first rappel down the Mandalay Bay, a bungee-jumping Cirque de Soleil act, a hotel mix-up and a poker chip-counting task before crossing the finish line first at Wayne Newton's house. "Every single season, I have cried at the finish because I got so attached to the teams," Meghan tells TVGuide.com. "To actually be in that situation was unreal." See what else the couple has to say.
The Amazing Race
Amazing Race 15
The final three teams (Meghan and Cheyne; Sam and Dan; Brian and Ericka) fly from the Czech Republic to Las Vegas, where one duo will win the $1 million first-place prize. Front-runners Meghan and Cheyne look to be the pair to beat, but don't count out conniving gay brothers Sam and Dan or cellar dwellers Brian and Ericka, who always manage to stay one step ahead of elimination.
Read on for previews of Robin Williams: Weapons of Self-Destruction, Desperate Housewives, Alice and Brothers & Sisters.
The Amazing Race 15 - Harlem Globetrotters - Herbert Flight Time, Nathaniel Big Easy
Being unable to unscramble five letters to spell "Franz" (as in Kafka) turned out to be quite the trial for The Amazing Race's Big Easy. The 28-year-old Harlem Globetrotter (real name: Nathaniel Lofton) struggled with the letters for almost three hours and was dealt a blow when Dan, after agreeing to work together, refused to give him the answer, offering up only the first letter. "That was his strategy. He felt like we were one of the strongest teams and he saw an opportunity to get rid of us and he went for it," Big Easy tells TVGuide.com. Rather than toil any longer, he and teammate, Herbert "Flight Time" Lang, 32, opted to incur a four-hour penalty, which ultimately led to their metamorphosis — uh, elimination. See why the pair had no regrets about the decision, what they think of Sam and Dan, and more.
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Curb Your Enthusiasm
One gets the feeling that Larry David has spent the last 11 years seething about detractors who found the Seinfeld finale misguided, mean-spirited or just-plain-not-funny. Perhaps he's waited this long to answer these critics, but heaven only knows what's in store for tonight's send-off of the seventh season of Curb, which has done a terrific job of reassembling the iconic sitcom's crew for a reunion. There's one thing, however, we know for sure: Frank Sinatra is already dead. He passed away the day after Seinfeld ended. Beyond that... wait and see.
Read on for previews of the 2009 American Music Awards, Amazing Race, Next Iron Chef and American Dad.
The Amazing Race, Gary and Matt
Father and son Gary and Matt Tomljenovich might have made the final four of The Amazing Race if not for a Speed Bump and getting tripped up by vocabulary. (Note to Matt: a "candelabra" is not an Estonian man downing beer). The partners, ages 47 and 22, say they were actually better than they looked on TV. "They made it seem like we took a while at the Roadblock, but we didn't," Gary tells TVGuide.com. "Once he figured out what a candelabra was, we got out of there pretty quick. We actually made up time when we got to the mat." By how much did they miss a semifinal spot? Find out below — and see what team they worked alongside.
The Amazing Race
Amazing Race 15
One of the show's most daunting Roadblocks is revisited when the five remaining teams travel to Stockholm and encounter the game's first-ever Switchback. What's a "Switchback"? It requires teams to complete a task performed on a previous season. In this case, it's unrolling bales of hay to find a clue. Fans may recall in Season 6 that poor Lena Jensen unrolled 100 bales of hay over eight hours and never found a clue. Phil eventually came to the field and told her to stop because she had already been eliminated. Maybe these teams will have better luck.
Read on for previews of Sunday Night Football, Family Guy Presents: Seth & Alex's Almost Live Comedy Show, Bored to Death, Mad Men and Brothers & Sisters.