The Amazing Race 13, Episode 4
I Wonder If They Like Blondes in New Zealand
By Reagen Sulewski
October 23, 2008

Oddly, they hate the movie Pretty in Pink and all it stands for.

The fourth leg of the Amazing Race starts with tensions between two teams as high as ever, and no underwear is even involved.

Kelly and Christy confront Nick and Starr about trying to get another team to use their Yield on them in the last leg, throwing on their best Grrr faces. Starr doesn't seem to understand why her charm isn't working on them to smooth things over (hint: they don't have penises), but honestly you two, it's a competition. Now, knocking them on trying to get other teams to do their dirty work, I can get fully behind. The Amazing Race is no place for cowards.

Ken and Tina, who have been startlingly tolerable in the last leg or so, lead off this leg at 12:33 in the morning. Tina still isn't quite grasping the idea the whole idea of the staggered start, whispering their next destination of Auckland, New Zealand (Land of Phil!) at the morning's starting point. They're all going to know sooner or later, Tina.

Once the teams get to Auckland, they'll have to drive to a harbor and untie a knot for their next clue. Ahead of that, they must find a flight out, though I can't imagine there's a whole ton of options for a morning flight from Bolivia to New Zealand.

The team intros to the day are mostly boring (what is it with these teams and their lack of early morning drama?) except that we officially find out that Brooke is the brains of the team of Marisa and Brooke, after Marisa wonders out loud if people in New Zealand like blondes. Brooke correctly points out that they're probably not rare down there, but you have to wonder where Marisa was going with this – was this her strategy? "Hi, I'm blonde, will you help me?" Well, probably. And where did she think New Zealand was? It's a hell of a lot blonder than where she is now. Gah! I could go on like this for pages so I'll stop now.

There's a bit of pointless airport drama (I mean, it's Bolivia to New Zealand. You're all getting on the same flight – stop being so protective and paranoid, people!) including Ken and Tina upset about losing their half hour lead (have you ever watched this show?) and Ty and Aja getting in a small skirmish over who is more controlling, but mostly it's quite chill. Okay, boring. Fight! Fight! Fight!

After what's probably a full day of travel, the teams bolt out to the harbor, and find the difficulty is in both finding it and staying on the right (left) side of the road. Most teams get a least some degree of lost, and Terrance gives up two spots in the race by disregarding Sarah's direction to follow the sign that said "Marina". Way to use your noggin there.

Ty and Aja get a flat tire on the route to the harbor, leading to the forfeiture of one of Ty's mancards as he stares helplessly at it, like doing so will somehow reinflate it. A helpful stranger finally stops to change it for them, leaving them ahead of only Marisa and Brooke, who apparently are driving to the harbor via Antarctica.

The first three teams, Ken and Tina, Andrew and Dan and Terrance and Sarah, get through the knot without too much trouble, and are sent to the summit of Mount Eden, a park in the middle of Auckland and it's highest natural point.

There's also a Fast Forward out there, which sends teams to the highest... unnatural point in Auckland, and has them climb to the top of the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere via its exterior maintenance ladders. Ken and Tina and Andrew and Dan both go after it, with the chance to use it coming down to parking. Ken and Tina grab a spot by an elevator, leading Andrew and Dan to abandon their attempt at the Fast Forward.

Meanwhile, Terrance and Sarah have made it to Mount Eden, and find themselves the Roadblock. For it, the teams will have to identify an intricate tattoo on the face of a Maori warrior (I hope they find Paikea), made all the more difficult because they're doing this at night, and the warriors aren't exactly standing still.

Terrance takes two tries to find the right guy, and is rewarded with a Maori kiss (which sounds really dirty, but isn't). From there, they have to head downtown to the City Life Hotel. Terrance remarks that this last task is the craziest thing he's ever done, which is simultaneously sad and revealing.

In the meantime, other teams have started to arrive at Mount Eden. Kelly and Christy for some reason cannot find their way up to the top by car and end up going on a little hike, letting a few of the other teams back in. Toni and Dallas pull into third for the time being, continuing their strong but almost anonymous performance so far.

At the top of the hotel, the racers have to spot an Annual Product Placement Travel Company Tchochke (APPTCT), hidden somewhere in the city taking part in a New Zealand travel activity. They'll then have to go to that spot to find their next clue. Sarah and Terrance really aren't built for this as a team, as Sarah suggests a systematic approach, while Terrance wants to start randomly scanning places. This is what's known as a visit from the clue stick, Sarah.

It's now time for some race perspective. About the time that Ken and Tina reach the top of the tower and grab their APPTCT waiting for them and get to go to the Pit Stop in a helicopter, Kelly and Christy and Andrew and Dan have reached the top of Mount Eden, and Marisa and Brooke are... just reaching the harbour?! The hell? Did they walk?

Kelly finds her warrior pretty quickly, while Andrew is a little slower and more methodical, to the consternation of Dan. He does eventually find him, and hilariously tries to back away from the Maori greeting. It doesn't make you gay, dude.

After locating their APPTCTs, the teams are directed to a giant kiwifruit in the countryside. Things are getting a little spread out now, with Marisa and Brooke still bringing up the rear. Nick and Starr proudly gloat about passing Kelly and Christy, thinking they'll be so frustrated by... "Got it!" Oh well.

Ken and Tina are greeted at the Pit Stop mat at Summerhill by Phil and... Phil's Dad! Phil obviously takes after his mother. Their bonus prize is a trip for two to Rio during Carinval, which probably isn't the best idea for a couple dealing with cheating issues. Just sayin'.

The kiwi fruit holds the Detour, which has the teams choose between squishing a bunch of kiwifruit to make juice and drinking it (mmm, feet juice), and racing something called a blokart around a track three times. At this time, we learn another thing that Sarah isn't allowed to do: open envelopes. Seriously, Sarah, run!

Terrance and Sarah and Toni and Dallas choose the fruit option, which proves to be a little painful, as the fruit is rough and the stomping grounds lined with jagged rocks. Passive and Aggressive get a good flow going and get finished quickly, and are sent to the Pit Stop, coming in second. Toni and Dallas, meanwhile, give up and head to the other Detour, cursing their choice and hoping other teams give up on it as well.

That's what happens for Andrew and Dan and Nick and Starr, whose glee at stomping fruit turns into Operation: Spite rather quickly. While leaving to go to the blokarts, Nick makes sure Kelly and Christy know where to go, under the rationale of getting them to the painful task quicker. For their part, they treat it like a spa treatment and get through it shockingly quick, making it to the Pit Stop in third.

Part of the blokart task is assembling your kart, which Dan proves to be kind of helpless at. Andrew vows to kill him later, but for now tries to help him muddle through. Toni and Dallas are quick at this, and end up fourth overall. The lesson as always – unless you physically can't do the Detour, don't switch.

Starr, after being specifically told not to throw her arm out in case of a crash, does just this and causes some sort of injury. She's thinks it's a broken arm, but this seems kind of unlikely since she can still move it. Whimpering a little, she actually takes the shift driving away to the Pit Stop for some inexplicable reason. I'm sure this was a division of labor these two had before the race, but Nick, show some compassion for your sister. Eventually he does so, but where are those instincts coming from? They end up in fifth.

Andrew and Dan finally get through their Detour, with Andrew releasing a lot of what appears to be some pent up frustration at Dan. "I don't expect him to run his mouth much anymore." Just hug it out, bitches. They end up in sixth. At the mat, Dan starts humping Phil's dad, which I'm sure makes him regret showing up immensely.

Now it's between Ty and Aja and Marisa and Brooke, aka the Pokeys vs. the "Huh?"s. Ty has trouble with putting his kart together, while the Pinks have their amazing(ly bad) navigation skills on their side. In the end Ty and Aja make it for seventh, sending Marisa and Brooke home, but not before Phil's dad gets to throw in some lecherous hugs on them. It's just as well, as these two were perhaps one leg away from being tasked so hard that they forgot to breathe.

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