If nothing else, Susan and Patrick Vaughn made history for being the first mother-son team to run The Amazing Race (Tuesdays, 9pm/ET on CBS). After a strong start, the twosome had trouble keeping up with the rest of the pack, and a defective boat finally sunk their chances this week. Here, the Philiminated mom and her openly gay son tell TVGuide.com about their often-contentious relationship — and Patrick reveals how he really feels about "media whores" Rob and Amber.
TVGuide.com: So Patrick, you were down in the dumps in your last episode. Having watched it, do you regret being so defeatist?
Patrick Vaughn: I definitely shouldn't have expressed it so much, but we were so far behind. It seemed like every little comment I made was aired. Maybe I did talk about it a lot. [Laughs] It was that whole boat thing — that did it for us. When our boat died, everyone else got ahead of us and we could hear on the walkie-talkies that they had found their clues and were on their way to the pit stop. Meanwhile, we hadn't even gotten our replacement boat! And after we finished the task, we couldn't find a cab for two hours because the drivers didn't want to take us to the polo grounds that late. We were even thinking that we'd have to get a hostel and check into the pit stop in the morning. I was so frustrated and Mom kept saying, "No, we're going to get a hostel, we're going to stay all night." And I was like, "Phil's going to stay on that mat all night? We need to be real about this." Eventually, we found a cab and made it to the pit stop around midnight, about two and a half hours behind the other teams.
TVG: Susan, had you seen that mean side of your son before?
Susan Vaughn: Yes, I had seen that in him. I think that's why we were a good team. The glass is half full for me and half empty for him, so we meet somewhere in the middle. Patrick and his dad are a lot alike. They never would have survived this together! You didn't see all the good things [my son] said, too.
TVG: He definitely said some harsh things to you at times. That didn't bother you at all?
Susan: I knew how tired he was and I knew it was really hard. But it was also hard on my end, which I don't think he always appreciated. Like during the Roadblock when I kept saying, "Let me just give you some advice." He didn't want mom's advice at that moment. Not that I knew anything more about riding a horse, but I felt that was the mom in me. I had to say that.
Patrick: We do have one of those open relationships where we talk about everything. Since being out of high school, I've been allowed to cuss and say whatever I wanted to say in front of my parents. Maybe I wasn't quite respecting [her on our] last night. Still, I knew she wasn't really offended and we were just going to move on.
TVG: Any advice for future mother-son teams?
Patrick: Make sure that you have a really stable relationship going into the race. You're going to be spending a lot of time with each other. Just be prepared to have all of your little relationship tics pointed out to you.
Susan: I actually think that's an advantage. You know each other better than probably any other team. You've spent your lives together; the others are building relationships and you're way beyond that. But for those families who might go into it with problems, this isn't the time to work on those relationships. If that's the reason you're going, take a vacation instead. We knew we weren't going to be divorced in the end. We're still mother and son.
TVG: How has your relationship been since the race?
Susan: We live on opposite coasts, but Patrick and I have always stayed in touch. We're like best friends. I think our relationship is back where it was, only now we have one more really neat experience to share and talk about.
TVG: Patrick, why the intense dislike for Rob and Amber?
Patrick: I hated them because I had watched them on Survivor and I just didn't like Rob on that show. When I first found out that they were going to be on the race, I was so annoyed because I love the show and I was like "Oh, my god, The Amazing Race is jumping the shark!" It sort of sucked because you knew those millionaires were going to be talking s--t about you all the time. They were going to make the game a lot uglier than it really had to be.
TVG: Speaking of that, what about Rob's actions at last week's Roadblock? Strategy or cheating?
Patrick: I don't think it was that bad that he didn't eat the meat. We all know Rob can't handle it. Of course he was going to wuss out. That's cool. I'm just glad that the two gay guys did it and Rob couldn't. And Debbie did it, too. He got beat by two gay guys and a girl! [Yet] they're giving him credit for playing the game like Survivor. It's annoying, but there are a lot of people with their noses up Rob and Amber's buttholes. But that's cool — that's what happens to media whores.
TVG: Sounds like there's still some animosity there!
Patrick: I just still don't like them. I still feel they took an opportunity away from [some other] couple who had never had that kind of experience before. And next, they're probably going to be on Wife Swap or something. I just know they're going to keep dragging this out and get 15 more minutes of fame.