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MrsGryn

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  1. Sources tell me it is his son's face, which is kind of a sweet, sneaky way to get a picture of your loved one out there with you.
  2. I have to say, her blindside seems like a waste of a vote. I can't blame her for not having a clue she was the target for the vote, mostly because it was a super-dumb move.
  3. This woman, honestly. I get so annoyed when people whine about being on the outs. I guarantee Elaine has less in common with the rest of the "sorority girls" than Karishma does, but she just seems bound and determined to make herself an outcast of the tribe and leans in to that victim status she seems to love.
  4. Chelsea was voted out in a blindside at Tribal Council, but it almost seemed like anyone's game could have been up. Was Chelsea the right choice or some the tribe have voted someone else out?
  5. Even Rob and Sandra figured that out almost immediately.
  6. As usual, we begin the same evening of tribal council with the members of Lairo attempting to talk one of their members down from the ledge. Karishma is pleasant enough, but of course she is upset that she was considered Plan B. Which is crazy, right, since she has been so good at meshing with the other members of her tribe. Aaron, who feels her pain from his own experiences, tries to be reassuring to her that her place is secure. You know, her place at the bottom of the pile. A-a-ron has his own targets in mind: Chelsea and Dean, who are suddenly an item and shown canoodling in the shelter. When did this development take place? Because the only thing I have seen Dean do so far is stub his toe on a sand pile. Missy and Aaron wander off to discuss the Dean-Chelsea showmance, even though Chelsea denied to Elaine that she will get romantically involved during Survivor because it, and I quote, “Messes up people’s games.” Let’s keep that in mind by the time we get to the end of the episode. Missy talks to us about her connection with Aaron, that they are both athletes and competitors and African-American and…..wait, what? Aaron is black? When did that happen? Okay, okay, I know. RACIST! But seriously, I thought he was of Mediterranean descent – Egyptian, Italian, possibly Turkish. Not that it really matters in the end, because what REALLY matters is that he is kind of an alpha male douchebag sort of gym-bro. Although if he said, “I pick things up and put them down” I would take back every disparaging I said about him. Mostly. As they talk about Karishma, both Missy and Aaron decide she is still an easy vote and they can get her out later. For now Missy wants Dean out so Chelsea will stop hanging out at the frat house and circle back to her sorority sisters. Their dismissal of Karishma seems like a heavy handed case of foreshadowing later in the season. Over on Vokai, Jamal’s pointy moobs decide to stay at camp while the rest of the tribe went out fishing or gathering firewood. He planned it this way in order to go out and search for a hidden immunity idol. There is a voice over from Jamal talking about a past relationship that I could not care less about, as we see a pastiche of him searching through the jungle. And as is usual when we see a longer scene of someone looking for an idol, he actually finds it. I’m okay with this. First, the cameraman was not pointing the camera to the spot where the idol was hidden. Second, Jamal was using a stick to poke into some of these creepy hidey holes in the trees, which may be the first time I have not seen someone sticking their hand blindly into a possible nest of spiders or snakes or poisonous tree frogs. I mean, it seems like a no-brainer, right? Anyway, Jamal and his moobs are quite pleased with themselves since he sees Vokai as a tribe descending into complacency. If only something would shake that up! Vrroooom! Vrrrroooom! The tinny sound of a motorboat engine is heard on Vokai beach. The skiff pulls up and its silent occupant hands out a rolled up parchment and a bag tied with a purple ribbon. Tommy reads the parchment aloud, sounding a bit like he is reading to his fourth grade class. Turns out the tribe has to pick someone unanimously to come to Island of the Idols and if they cannot come up with someone, they will have to draw a name from the bag. Interesting change up! Naturally, as people who have watched the game play out for years, they all know that volunteering for something is one of those massively stupid moves that puts a huge target on your bac….what’s that? Noura has volunteered to go? Of course she has! Kellee is a little worried about someone going and blowing her secret, understandably so. She knows she will have to make an alliance with whoever actually goes. Jack has to explain to Noura why no one is stepping up to volunteer, because Noura is a dumbass when it comes to human nuance. As it turns out, the rest of Vokai was happy to let her go to the island because it meant an afternoon of peaceful existence for them. Oh, we don’t see anyone saying that but it is an easy extrapolation. Walking up the beach on Idol Island, Noura sees the giant heads of Julie Chen and Phil Keoghan, so she is quite surprised when Boston Rob and Sandra come strolling out of the jungle. They give her the usual welcome, though we do not see the Idols Oath being read. There is a little chitchat and when they offer Noura some watermelon, she squeals with delight. The Survivor editors splice in a large flock of birds taking flight on the beach as Noura’s loud squeal is dubbed over it. Hilarious! Then Rob gets down to business. This lesson is on persuasion. He tells her that it’s about figuring out what people want in order to line up what you can get (with a flashback to Erik giving up his immunity after Cirie convinced him). Rob mentions appealing to someone’s ego (Parvati flirting with a guy), scaring them (Yul showing Penner an immunity idol), and Sandra says you can start a rumor (Sandra telling Russell Hantz that Coach was gunning for him), and Rob finishes with an offering someone something (Rob asking Lex to watch out for Amber with a promise to take care of him later). Noura claims her connections are intellectual. Now, Rob drops the bomb. They have insight into the next immunity challenge: it will be a blindfold challenge with a caller. Noura has to convince the tribe to make her the caller – and they have to agree unanimously – for her to win an advantage to block another player. If she is not chosen as the caller, then she loses her vote for the next tribal council. Noura IMMEDIATELY agrees to do it, even as Sandra tries to counsel her to think about it for a minute. Noura blows her off and says oh, she’s doing it WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! Rob and Sandra glance at each other and their expressions convey that they both think Noura is a nutjob. Welcome to Vokai’s world, Idols. Sandra tells us later that Noura’s inability to think things through are going to get her in trouble (too late, we rounded that corner already) and Rob tells us in his patented incredulous way that Noura is the LAST person who should be calling the tribe in this challenge, that she just lives in Noura-world. As she is motoring back to Vokai, Rob says to Sandra, “She is definitely perceptive. The question is, is her perception reality?” Have I mentioned how much I love these two as mentors? (“Whoooooo!” – the inner thoughts of the skiff operator after he drops Noura off on Vokai beach.) Speaking of which, Vokai Beach, Day Nine. The tribe gathers to greet Noura and hear what happened at Idol Island. And boy, howdy, does she spin a tale remarkable in its ill-conceived logic and poorly delivered execution. Essentially, Noura presents a tale where the tribe has to agree on her role in the upcoming challenge and she can give them full details about the challenge itself. She is wild-eyed and frenetic as she attempts to employ what she calls a “this for that” strategy, but she really only succeeds in making herself look even more manic and unreliable. After some initial hesitation, the tribe members all agree that she can have whatever role she wants and then she describes the challenge: tribe will be blindfolded, she will call out to them which way to go and retrieve stuff and bring it back to her and the first back wins, that’s it. Turns out to be a little more complicated than that, but we’ll get there when we get to the challenge. I do love that Noura did not get ALL the details of the challenge from Rob and Sandra. This is already a big advantage for Vokai because now they can spend their time practicing walking around blindfolded and listening to a caller give them directions. Anyway, after her frenzied description of the challenge, there are some pointed questions from the tribe, but Noura does her level best to shut them down. My favorite is Jamal’s sardonic expression as he watches her gesticulate her way through demonstrating the challenge. Please note it is entirely possible I am enjoying Jamal in this moment because he has a shirt on. We are treated to an entertaining montage of Noura failing spectacularly at being a caller for her blindfolded tribemates. Immunity challenge time! Probst is wearing a Glidden Paint Deep Artic Night Blue shirt, for those keeping score at home. The challenge is mostly what Noura described: one member will be the caller, the rest of the tribe will be bound together in teams of two. They will have to find their way through a course while retrieving three keys. Once they have brought all three keys back to the caller, that person will then physically lead the entire tribe back through the course to a final station, where the caller will use the keys to unlock puzzle pieces. The caller will then direct one person to put together the puzzle while still blindfolded. First tribe to get the puzzle completed wins immunity. No other luxury reward is offered this time. Probst turns to Vokai and reminds them they have an extra person and need to figure out who will sit this out. What happens is a great Survivor moment and I watched it back several times. Kellee looks directly at Lauren and though we can’t see her face, we do see Lauren give a slight nod and she turns to the rest of the tribe and says matter-of-factly that Noura is sitting out. The rest of the tribe either agrees or is silent, including Noura’s erstwhile alliance member, Jason, who nods in agreement. Noura herself is shocked but quietly accepts her fate and takes her spot on the bench. She can’t believe after all her efforts to come up with the perfect lie and gain the advantage that they thwarted her plans! My suspicion when I first saw the episode was that Kellee, who has proven herself no slouch when it comes to thinking things through, put two and two together and figured out Noura as the caller would get her an immunity idol (the logical conclusion rather than an advantage). Thus Kellee may have lead a pre-challenge discussion to maneuver around Noura’s stated role and negate whatever she got for herself at Idol Island. However it happened, I LOVE it. Survivors ready? GO! Jason calls for Vokai, Elizabeth for Lairo. Jason is calm, cool and collected. He calls out clear directions and send his whole tribe out at once, while Elizabeth is sending people out in pairs. Whoever had Tommy in the pool to get the first smack in the cojones wins. Oof, that looks like it hurts! Lairo makes a big mistake when Dean and Chelsea go over an obstacle rather than under and they have to backtrack as Elizabeth yells at them. At one point, all the players run into each other while all the Survivors smacking into their opposition. Probst snarks that some people are meeting for the first time as Dan accidentally clocks Missy in the jaw. Vokai is at the puzzle table with Jason calmly talking Kellee through the puzzle assembly. They are almost done but the puzzle design is slightly off so they have to fix it. Meanwhile, Elizabeth talks Aaron through the assembly of the puzzle pieces and they catch up to Vokai quickly. Aaron slams the last piece into the puzzle and Lairo starts screaming, however the design is off just like Vokai’s was, so they have to move a couple of pieces. This gives Jason’s cool leadership as the caller enough time to enable Kellee to correct their puzzle and win immunity. Thus Lairo is headed back to Tribal Council for the third time. Post challenge in Lairo beach, Karishma knows she is the easy vote. If it were up to Tom and Elaine, no muss no fuss, bing bang boom, Karishma is gone. But this is Survivor. We are long past the days of Dr. Sean’s alphabet strategy of voting. Votes are more complicated since the introduction of the immunity idols, but also because of players who are savvy to the long term parts of the game, the post merge, the final three, and that thing I haaaaaaate: creating a resume. Although creating LinkedIN profiles for these people might be kind of fun. The conversations that go on involve Aaron campaigning for Dean to go since he isn’t helping to win challenges. Missy is good with that, but Elizabeth less so. She really wants Karishma to go for sucking at challenges and camp life. Dean at least works around camp. Elaine rightly hits on the one thing we all know: Karishma is going to jump to the other side at her earliest opportunity, either at the merge or during a tribe-swap. Aaron is less of a threat to do that, thanks to Missy working him. Karishma? Oh hell no. She’s waiting for the door to be opened so she can betray all those who allowed her to nearly bleed to death. I can’t wait for Noura and Karishma to meet and compare noble outsider stories. Missy keeps trying to figure out who would be the best option and goes to Elaine and suggests Chelsea as another option. They keep Dean for strength, Karishma for another easy vote, and they break up the Dean-Chelsea bond. Elaine’s head is spinning at how quickly Missy is able to pivot to someone else as a vote. Love Elaine as a person, but Missy is really impressing me with her game play and forethought. Well, except for the main thing she is missing which is VOTE OUT KARISHMA NOW YOU FUCKING IDIOTS! Tribal council time. Probst is wearing a Glidden Paint Seawall shirt, for those keeping score at home. And once again I really have no idea who is going home this time. Sandra and Rob sneak their way into the duck blind to observe the proceedings and Sandra snark-whispers, “They just love Tribal Council.” Ha! Probst jumps in talking about blindsides and gets to Karishma, pointing out that she is still there. She attributes that to praying to the Survivor Gods. Oh, honey. The Survivor Gods are sitting in a little grass hut above the Tribal Council. No need to pray to them, they are just going to amuse themselves at your expense. Elaine tells Probst she gets her head turned around by all the changing plans, and Sandra waves her hand dismissively and whispers to Rob, “This one never knows anything.” Sandra’s not wrong here, but I think that Elaine plays up the affable yokel a bit to keep people off-guard. I would be interested to see how she interacted with them on Idol Island. Dean tells Probst that the chaos is good for Karishma’s game because it could mean that other names are out there, and Chelsea piles on saying that if you stop for just a moment, your name could be out there. Elizabeth stares at her wide-eyed, which should have been a major clue. Elizabeth tells Probst that it started with one path and turned into several move plans. Missy all but says that Karishma is not the one going home tonight due to all the chaos and of course Karishma loves what she is hearing at tribal. Missy snaps back at her, however, for being such a crappy player. Missy calls her out on being a terrible puzzle player, and says Karishma is getting lapped so she should not be so smug about it. Rob loves Missy’s open verbal smackdown, but Karishma doesn’t care. She quotes the worst (well, prior to the entire last season) scene from Game of Thrones by claiming, “Chaos is a ladder” and something something climb out of a pit. There is more talk about blindsides, but whatever, I’m tired of it. Let’s just get to the vote already. Probst goes to tally the votes. Karishma. Karishma. Chelsea. Chelsea. (Sandra: “Look at her, she’s looking around!”) Chelsie. Chelsea. Chelsea. And with that, Dean’s main squeeze is voted out with an idol in her pocket. Sandra loves it. “You wanted a blindside, you gotchu one.” Next week? Drop! Yo! Bluff!
  7. MrsGryn

    Literature

    Interesting! Thanks for the follow up.
  8. If by "bone fragments" you mean flakes of coconut, then yes.
  9. Okay, I was ready for him to go by the end. I tried really hard to like him and there are elements to Vince that I still like but he seems like he would be really annoying to live with over the long haul. Loved how in a confessional after his Vokai camp raid he was sporting a big old bleeding scrape on his leg. War wound!
  10. We should take a vote on that, AD.
  11. That was not bone,. It was coconut. And she deserved to be injured for using a knife that way. Idiot. As far as no one fussing over her...hard to say why exactly that happened. They knew medical was on the way, I assume, she wasn't screaming or actually passing out. If she had shown more emotion or pain or, you know, asked for help I have a hard time believing that they would ignore her completely. Karishma wants to be a victim and dammit, she is going to be a victim!
  12. Last week it was high school cliques. This week it is college sororities. Can the Survivors please just be adults already? Vokai High, post tribal. Jamal and Jack realize they were on the outs, but they take two different tacks when their tribemates pull them aside to discuss the Molly Blindside. Jack gets it and actually smiles at the audacity of the move, acknowledging to us that yeah, he totally missed any signs of impending doom. He tells the others he would appreciate some honesty from now on. Jamal, on the other hand, is pulling an Aaron from Lairo: he is gonna burn the mother DOWN! Well, he is slightly more controlled than that implies. Jamal is going to anaconda his rage and humiliation and wait in stealth mode before he turns on these traitors who dared to play their own game. Lairo beach. Out over the ocean is a YOOGE waterspout, swirling far out to sea. Sadly, it does not come close to shore where the girls of Lairo are cavorting in the surf, while the guys sit around camp and bitch about how much they hate mornings. Amateurs. If I were out there sleeping on bamboo with bugs, smelly strangers, and no coffee you would see some professional level bitchery happening. The women seem to be having a nice time with each other, which is always nice to see and gives me hope the girls’ alliance might actually stick together. Well, everyone except Karishma, who feels the need to tell us that Indians are very modest and she is very uncomfortable out there in her underwear. Also she is faking liking the other girls. Yeah, just drop that bomb and walk away. It’s okay to say you have nothing in common with the other women. Elaine and Missy have very little that they can relate to with each other, at least on the surface, but they are managing to have a good time with Chelsea and Elizabeth. It’s called sisterhood, Karishma. And as a, as you put it, thirty-seven year old married woman, you should be a little more secure in yourself and not worry so much what the wider community thinks of you being on a TV show that showcased a “fat, naked” gay man in its first season. The men are the ones who are really uncomfortable with the women being so close. The three men, Aaron, Tom, and Vince discuss sticking together against the women. Vince goes along with that on the surface but has no use for the big strong guys now wanting to work with him. First, points for agreeing to whatever alliance is thrown your way and thinking about it later. That is basic strategy for surviving. However, why is Tom being punished for Aaron and Ronnie’s votes against Vince when Tom was the one who was bonding with Vince and Elaine in the first few days and helped prevent Vince being the first person evicted? I want to like Vince – I really do – but he is making it super difficult by acting like a entitled brat. Vokai makes fire. This is not exciting, but it does lead into a “Let’s all hate on Noura again” segment. She is Dan’s target for the next vote as an easy target and he is certain Jack and Jamal are on board, and he is just as certain he can, as he puts it, “lead people to a decision that is good for them…and me.” He is so oily and so very Hollywood smarm. Jamal is totally not buying what Dan is selling, and in fact likens Dan to a used car salesman, calling him “icky.” Yeah, okay, pointy moob guy. I agree with you on this but show me some better game play beyond napping and then pouting. Then we’ll talk. Jamal tries to recruit Janet, aka Tiny Tank, who listens but declares she will have to go talk to Tommy as well. Tommy seems to be the node everyone goes to on this tribe, which is a great position for him at this early stage. He comes across as measured and thoughtful and concerned. It seems a safe bet that he is a beloved teacher at his school. Back to Lairo. Karishma is cutting a coconut on her lap, which seems like a recipe for….DISASTER! She cut her palm from what I can see and immediately proclaims that she can see her bone, which…no. Those are pieces of coconut floating in the blood, you flake. She kneels then bends over in order to keep from fainting…or is that feinting? In the meantime, her tribemates eat their rice and chat amiably in the background. This causes Karishma all kinds of trauma as not one person came over to see if she was okay. At some point medical came in to clean her wound and bandage it, and since we didn’t get to see Cute British Doctor, the wound wasn’t nearly as life-threatening as she would have liked. She declares the rest of her tribemates as dead to her and I declare her Drama Queen of the Season. Also, sorry for thinking it was Chelsea who cuts herself. I blame Tsylyst. Easy scapegoat. Vrrrrroom! A skiff pulls up to Lairo beach and everyone ignores it. Hey, it’s not like the boat cut its hand or anything. Eventually the skipper has to call out, “Hello? Helllllooooooo?” before the indolent Lairo stir themselves to see what the heck is going on. They finally get excited when they realize it is a message for them (side note: Dean stubs his toe pretty badly on sand). Reading the parchment aloud, it turns out Vince is the one chosen to head to Idol Island. He immediately whines, “How did I get picked?” and just shut up, dude. He is probably hell to live with, though at this point he is only third worst after Noura and Karishma. Just get in the damn boat. After Vince leaves, the rest of the tribe is standing on the beach and there is some idle chat about the possibility of him picking up an idol and Dean brightly says, “We should just split the vote!” which is immediately followed by an uncomfortable silence. Dean, Dean, Dean. This is not a good episode for you to finally be featured. You stub your toe on sand and then then blurt out a plot to split the vote in front of EVERYONE, including Karishma. She knew immediately that she would be the one being the other vote. I guess she didn’t lose enough blood to cause brain malfunction. On the Island of the Idols, Vince approaches the giant wooden heads of JWoww and The Situation, and then is surprised when Sandra and Rob come out of the jungle to greet him. They take him back to their camp, sit him down and after Rob asks him where he is from, he is at a loss for words. Channeling all of us, Rob asks, “You don’t know where you’re from?” but Vince stutters out some words and keeps weeping. Rob and Sandra are very kind to him, and even in an aside to the camera later, Vince shows some self-awareness of how ridiculous it is for a grown man to be crying like that. Hey, a game like this causes emotions to float to the surface much more easily than in real life, so I will cut him some slack there. Moving on, Rob cuts to the heart of the matter: Vince’s lesson is keeping calm under pressure. His task will be to sneak into the Vokai camp with a torch, steal fire, and sneak back out without being caught. If he can accomplish that, he will get an idol good for the next two tribals, otherwise he loses his vote. If there is no fire, he has to bring them proof that he accomplished the test. Vince agrees. Rob and Sandra show Vince a map of the Vokai camp and suggest ways to sneak in, along with Sandra imparting the wisdom of her “five years of military training” by teaching him how to crawl in the sand. I mean…okay, but isn’t that information that is basic to humans who have learned to walk? Rob gets a kick out of Sandra’s methods and gives her a hard time after Vince is being whisked by motorboat over to the enemy camp. She wishes she could go with him, and Rob tells her she is too loud. Sandra snorts and declares she is stealth mode and he laughs at her. They seem to be having a really good time , together as Island Idols. Vokai camp at night has everyone sleeping. No one, not even Noura is away and tending to the fire. In fact, there is no fire at all. As Vince stumbles his way through the jungle, he spies their shelter and makes his way closer. His timing is pretty bad as apparently Tommy is plagued with night terrors and starts screaming in his sleep. Jack, who is next to Tommy, holds him down as he wakes Tommy up out of his bad dream, and everyone rolls over and goes back to sleep. Vince is able to get closer and finds their fire is dead. He decides to collect as much ash from the cold hearth as he can to prove he was there. Using his water bottle to collect it, he runs out of camp and promptly slips in the mud. Back with Sandra and Rob, they decide he completed the task and hand him the idol. Vince is thrilled and recognizes that he will need to use the idol correctly. Pretty sure every Survivor who has won an idol has used that exact same wordage. Immunity Challenge time! Probst is wearing a Glidden paint Bright Prelude Blue shirt, for those keeping score at home. This is another partial water challenge, which is great because if you have an Olympic swimmer and a lifelong lifeguard, why wouldn’t you have as many water challenges as possible? On this one, the Survivors will start off on a platform where one tribe member will swim to a cargo net attached to another platform, dive down to untie a key and climb up the net to give the key to two waiting puzzle solvers. Once that key is done, the rest of the tribe will swim to a wooden teeter-totter where they will have to use their bodies to balance their weight in order for the last one up to untie a bag with puzzle pieces. They will then have to move to the other side of the teeter totter to get the second bag of puzzles pieces, then swim the bags to the second platform and let the puzzle solvers work. First tribe to finish the really neat hanging puzzle wins immunity and reward in the form of luxury (tarp, pillows, blankets, chairs, hammock). Survivors ready? GO! Elizabeth the Olympic swimmer and Janet the lifeguard swim against each other. They are pretty well matched, but Elizabeth is both younger and faster and thus is able to get to her key quickly. Janet, whose swimming skills center on strength as opposed to just speed, has a harder time getting her key, so much so that Lairo is already on the teeter totter. Missy gets the first bag of pieces while Vokai is still getting on the teeter totter and working Kellee into position to get their bags. Eventually Lairo gets both bags and they are able to have Karishma and Dean working on the puzzle with a big lead. Finally Vokai gets to the last platform and Jamal and Lauren start working on their puzzle. Vokai flies through their puzzle as Karishma and Dean completely flake out. Probst exhorts them to get it together and then says Lairo is dead in the water. Vokai wins the Tiki Torch immunity idol and some Pier One pillows. Post challenge, the talk on Lairo is splitting the votes between Vince, in case he has an idol, and Karishma. Dean talks to Missy that the girls will vote Karishma and the guys will vote for Vince. She is not sure that is how she wants it to go and talks to Vince, who suggests Tom because he is older and might “wither out.” Elizabeth is not so sure, because she likes Tom and is sure Elaine feels the same way. Vince and Karishma talk but they are both whiny bitches and all I hear is Charlie Brown Teacher Talk. Also, Vince does a lot of smelling of his hands and that is just grossing me out. He is aware that he may need to play his idol tonight. You know, the idol that is ONLY good for two tribals. I mean there is every reason to hold on to it, right? Tribal Council time. Probst is wearing a Glidden paint Everclear Blue shirt, for those keeping score at home. Rob and Sandra sneak into their duckblind to watch the proceedings unfold once again. Probst starts the talk with Aaron, who notes that screwing up puzzles is what brought them both losses and he knows exactly who is responsible for it. Karishma huffs and rolls her eyes and Probst asks what she would like to say. She goes into a speech about being different from everyone else there and how it is harder for her to relate to them and then mentions that Missy, Elizabeth, and Chelsea are all younger than her and she isn’t part of their “sorority.” Well, that’s just stupid. Other than ignoring her dramatics over the cut on her hand, the other women have not shown signs of excluding her. And even more pointedly, Karishma did not include Elaine in that sorority comment. Does she really think it is harder for her to fit in than it is for Elaine? Hardly. Elaine is worlds away different from the rest of the tribe in life and experience, but her personality is warm and comfortable and puts others at ease. Karishma might need to learn a lesson here on how not to alienate people and then blame it on them. Anyway, Elizabeth outright assures Karishma that they in no way intended to make her feel that way, and I believe her. Probst turns to Tom, who basically says I want to win. Shocking words coming from a former professional athlete. Vince counsels keeping faith with the people you are connected with and don’t let the paranoia set it. You know, Vince, a little paranoia right now might do you some good, especially when Karishma gets up to whisper to Elizabeth, Missy, and Chelsea. Tom is having none of that, saying “Come on, this is all an act. Come on. Are you guys buying this?” It is hilarious. Probst thinks so, too, but he is paid to take this stuff seriously so he asks Tom to elaborate. The former hockey player grunts that Karishma is just trying to change the plan and that’s just rubbish. And with that, it’s time to vote. Probst goes to tally the votes. Tom. Karishma, Karishma, Karishma. Vince. Vince. Vince. Vince. Vince. Sandra is SHOCKED at this. And with that, Vince is voted off with an idol in his pocket. Probst leaves them laughing with a joke: “You may suck at puzzles, but you are really good at blindsides.” The votes broke down this way: Vince voted for Tom. The votes for Karishma came from Dean, Aaron, and Tom. The girls all voted for Vince. The takeaway for me is this: not one of the girls felt enough of an alliance with him to warn him to use an idol if he had it. That speaks to either the stronger girls alliance or that Vince was much less well-liked than we saw from the editing. At any rate, I’m glad he is gone because I am not sure I could take any more scenes of him smelling his fingers.
  13. Cassandra was lovely and very conscious of the scrutiny of the cameras. She was mature and careful in how she presented herself. Great person all around. Sad news.
  14. I...I mean...what? Seriously? Sex repellent? I'm all for making light of people on this show (obviously), but that statement is a bit harsh. She is a fifty-something year old woman who has worked an outdoor, physical job for years. Eye candy is great, but it is not the be all and end all of Survivor casting. Thanks be to Probst.
  15. May I introduce you to Harvey Weinstein? Kevin Spacey? Roman Polanski?
  16. Jason went along with her analogy. Whether he really saw it that way or was just agreeing with her, hard to say. He did mention it in a confessional.
  17. Good lord, she is crazy! However, I have to say in watching the show again a few times for the recap, I found her less crazy and more quirky-weird and socially awkward.
  18. Smart girl, very pretty, awfully sure of herself and her place in the world. If I were judging based on the tiny bit I know about her, which is of course what we do around here, I'd say she hasn't had to struggle a whole lot in life. Must be nice!
  19. Yeah, pulling Aaron aside to try and talk him back into the fold was smart, and then rolling his eyes when he was being a dumb fuck was even better. Overall plus.
  20. Loved the move to hide the idol in her hair. Brilliant! Also the crying did what it was intended for: made everyone sympathetic and threw them off the trail of questioning her story. Smart girl.
  21. You'll remember her now because she found an idol! Also because she apparently cuts her hand off in the next episode.
  22. Despite some decent casting and one really disagreeable person that made excellent fodder for jabs, last season’s Edge of Extinction twist was pretty terrible overall. I had a LOT of qualms about this whole Island of Idols and the participation of Rob and Sandra, but after tonight’s episode, I’m pretty pleased with the twist. Post-tribal on Lairo beach. A-a-ron is mighty upset no one told him Ronnie was going home. He claims that he was not that close and would have voted with the majority, but I find that claim dubious at best. Vince, on the other hand, is all butt-hurt that he was the target of the losing side. He demands to know why his name was throw out and dude, just shut up! Overreacting to votes that don’t mean anything is not how you get to the end of the game. Now, Missy, on the other hand, makes the smart play. She pulls Aaron aside to try and talk him back into the fold, smartly acknowledging his own butt-hurtedness (new word!) while trying to make him understand that one vote in which he was not a part of does not mean he is persona non grata on Lairo. Unfortunately, he is too far gone in his pity party to pay attention. Over on Vokai beach, we find out the crazy person of the season is Noura. First of all, she has crazyeyes while she rants about being the only one who got up while it was raining to try and save the fire. This goes over about as well as you would expect. Molly, the young attorney licensed to practice law in fifty-nine states, smugly explains to Noura that she was sleeping so keeping the fire going is not really her problem. Her entire demeanor is dismissive, while Kellee the Germaphobe sitting next to Molly at least looks slightly uncomfortable with the whole situation. Noura continues her vocal advice to everyone, complaining that they should always be bringing wood back to camp, be working hard and blah blah blah. I’m tired just listening to her after forty-five seconds. She does, however, light onto one thing: Molly has charmed a lot of people on Vokai and creating a circle of admirers. There is a great shot of an ineffectual attempt to open a coconut with a handaxe by Molly that shows she is about as weak as a lamb. Seriously. I think a newborn panda would have had better success. Crazyeyes Noura is not entirely alone, however. She has Jason, the idiot who searched for an idol within hours of landing on the beach, as a companion. Jason talks her off the ledge with some sense about letting the real personalities come out and trying to lay back and let them fracture among themselves. Jason expresses to us a sense of loyalty to Noura for warning him that the rest of the tribe was gunning for him on Day One, and he certainly comes across as a sensible, grounded fellow. This is very surprising as his profession is listed as “personal injury attorney.” I expect there are some billboards around his hometown with an 800 number, inviting people who were in a fender bender to give him a call for a free case estimate. That evening in Lairo, Aaron and Tom are trying to make a fire with the flint they received from being the first losers to go to Tribal Council. The men work and work at it and Chelsea wanders over to see how they are doing and offer some advice. Aaron huffs at her that she should just give it a go then, if she’s so damn smart, and I’m suddenly wondering why Elizabeth isn’t there starting the fire since she got the lesson from Rob and Sandra recently. Anyway, it seems Chelsea would have smoked Boston Rob on that firemaking challenge because she lights that fire in no time flat. IN YO FACE, A-A-RON! Tom makes a joke about his male ego being ruined for the rest of his life and I kind of love him for laughing about it. Chelsea tells us the guys are okay but it is the women of Lairo that are dominating the tribe. This is true of camp life but will it be the same during the immunity challenge? In the meantime, everyone scrambles to collect firewood to keep the flame going and while she is out in the twilight, Chelsea spots a tree with a deep bole and she sees a small wrapped package. A hidden immunity idol! Now, I feel two ways about this. First, glad a woman found it so we don’t have to spend half the season hearing about the differences in numbers of men vs. women finding idols. On the flip side, I had thought the Island of Idols would be the only place where Idols could be obtained, which would have been just fine. In fact, I would have preferred it. Don’t tell the Survivors that there are no idols out there, let them search for them all over by all means, but change up the game this season a little bit. Keeps the future players on their toes and warns everyone that rules can be changed from season to season. Too much self-awareness can ruin the dynamic of the game, and I think the abundance of idols comes dangerously close to that edge. Vokai beach, Day Five. Wherein there is a hilarious segment of Noura leading most of the tribe in beach yoga. Jason is trying but looks entirely uncomfortable. Janet, aka Tiny Tank, looks on with a neutral expression, though in fairness that seems to be her only expression. Jamal is wearing a shirt and for that I am eternally grateful. I have found I like Jamal seventy-eight percent better when he has a shirt on and I do not have to see his pointy moobs. Lauren, of the long blonde braids, sneezes, half-asses it and finally falls down. In other news, Dan’s boxer-briefs have a rather unfortunate X pattern on them that emphasizes the rolled up sock in his drawers. As beach yoga draws to a close, a motor can be heard in the background and a small skiff pulls up with a silent delivery messenger passing over a rolled up parchment to Dan. It says to gather as a tribe which they do, only to find out that Kellee has been selected to participate in a survey on the Island of the Idols. Please select Yes or No with your only option being Yes. Kellee starts to freak out a bit but Jason talks her down a bit with some sense: stay calm, think outside the box, and assume nothing. As she lands on the Island of the Idols beach, Kellee’s experience starts out pretty much the same as Elizabeth’s did last week: walk down the beach, be surprised by the giant heads of Parvati-with-a-Perm and Mike Rowe from Dirty Jobs, then be even more surprised when Sandra and Boston Rob saunter out of the jungle. Kellee was at least thinking ahead and had surmised that Cochran might show up, but after declaring this to Rob, she agrees with him when he says this is “whey bettah.” Rob reviews the Idols Oath, which okay are we going to be subjected to this every week? Then the three of them settle into the cozy camp and the test begins. Oh, not that Kellee knows it is part of the lesson. All she knows is that Rob and Sandra are peppering her with personal questions (went to Harvard, has a boyfriend named Brock, going to Wharton for an MBA) and then babbling about themselves with all kinds of useless information. Rob has four daughters with his wife, Ambah. He went to Boston College and went to a few Harvard parties back in his days of dark hair and a flat belly. Sandra has four dogs, the names of which are Blah, Blah, Blah and Poppa. Her husband is still active duty army, she has two daughters, and so on. It’s the Island of Babble! Kellee’s eyes are glazed over and so when Rob finally gets to the point of revealing that this is all part of the lesson of the Island of Idols, she nearly faints. Her test will be whether she paid attention to what they were telling her, and how important it is to hear what tribe members are saying in order to fully understand and engage with them when you need an alliance or a vote. Nice! As Kelley carefully considers her options – get four out of five answers right and an idol good for two tribals, or lose her vote for the next tribal council, Rob and Sandra exchange glances. During her hesitation, Rob then offers to sweeten the deal: only three out of five answers need to be correct and the idol will be good for three tribal councils. This is good enough for Kellee and she agrees, then aces the responses to which branch of the military Sandra’s husband serves in, what is the name of ONE of Sandra’s dogs, and how many daughters does Sandra have. Both Idol masters look very pleased that Kellee passed the test and happily give her the idol as Kellee breaks down in tears of relief. They are sweet and sympathetic to her, patting her back and giving her props. She picks the secret name from the Lairo tribe to go to Island of Idols next week. After she gets back to Vokai’s beach, she tells the SAME DAMN LIE that Elizabeth did the week before about smashing urns. What the hell? Are the producers feeding them this lie to keep the Idols a secret? I am not normally a conspiracy theorist but this seems awfully suspicious. And she has created for herself the same trap as Elizabeth: your cover will be blown as soon as someone else gets to the Island. Now, I did like how Kellee threw suspicion off her herself by breaking down in tears and dumping out her bag and starting to strip to prove that she did not have an idol. What did she do with it? Hid the idol in the bun of her hair. LOVE it! Great thinking, Harvard girl! Immunity challenge time! Probst is wearing a Glidden Paint Forest Black shirt, for those keeping score at home. And seriously…black? Fuck you, Probst. The challenge itself is one of the multi-part types that begin in the water and end on land: tribes with start from a platform, swim to a buoy where they will have to dive to unknot ropes holding a large, heavy ladder down. They will then have to hold up the ladder so one of the players can climb it and untie a bag of balls from a tall pole, then carry the ladder onto land where they will have to use it as a bridge to cross two platforms on the sand. Once across, they will use the three balls in the bag on a modified pinball board to land the balls in three separate spots. Lauren of the blonde braids sits out for Vokai. Survivors ready? GO! Right away, I was looking to see which swimmer would step up in the ocean swim. Janet and Elizabeth were actually pretty equal, though Elizabeth has to use a face mask and Tiny Tank just muscles through. The problem really occurs when Vokai is raising their ladder so Molly can climb up to get the ball bag, the ocean decides “Not today!” and batters them around a bit. It takes twice as long for them to get their ladder up onto the beach. In fairness, they also don’t have Aaron and Dan and Dean on their tribe, all three of whom are tall, strong fellows. Missy and Elaine team up to toss balls for Lairo with Karishma looking useless, while Jamal’s pointy moobs tosses for Vokai. It comes down to the last ball and Missy nails it for Lairo. They win, in addition to immunity, a cooking kit and tons of spices, including some great looking fresh ginger and lemongrass. Probst has nothing for Vokai. Wah wah, sad trombone. Going to be an easy vote, right? Crazy Noura or Idol Hunting Jason. At least that is what the power trio on Vokai, Jamal, Molly, and Jack, think. Noura pleads her case to Jack and Jamal, saying she knows they are deciding between them. Jamal wants her to articulate why they should vote out Jason and for her part, Noura refuses to play that game, responding that she would rather leave it in their hands but that she would really like to stay. I am kind of glad to see someone passing on the opportunity to bash their ally to the ruling party. Also, Jamal seems to think that his alliance with Molly and Jack is somehow a secret from the rest of the tribe. Dude. Please. Noura figured it out on Day Two. She has been running around calling them the King, Queen, and Jack of the tribe. And as annoying as Noura is – and she is VERY annoying - this part of her is pretty good at the game. I can easily see why she was cast. Jamal is pleased to see that the tribe is handling this vote so well. They decide to split the vote between Jason and Noura. Jamal is so comfortable in fact, he takes a nap. Meantime, Lauren pulls together Janet and Kellee for a chat. She posits the idea of voting out Molly first and taking control of the game from the Top of the Deck alliance. Love it when players don’t just roll over and do what they are told! Lauren of the blond braids seems like a ditz but this shows some excellent forethought. Kellee just looks sick to her stomach, though that might be the proximity to all the germs a tropical island holds. Lauren informs Jason of the plan and later when he and Crazy Noura talk, she starts shimmying with joy. He solidifies some love from me when he tells her, “Don’t dance! This is like Footloose. No dancing allowed!” Jason was smart to tamp down her desire to celebrate, because that is just foolishness. Anyone can see you and draw a conclusion that something is up, you dumb crazy woman! Janet talks to Tommy, who thinks it is a little too early to make this move. He feels he has Jamal and Jack in his back pocket (which, no, Molly has them in her back pocket), and he has to decide which lunch table to hang out with at school. Yeah, there is entirely too much of the high school clique talk on this episode. You people are adults for the most part. Get over it already! Tribal Council! Probst is wearing a Glidden paint Bright Cornflower Blue shirt, for those keeping score at home. Rob and Sandra sneak into their duck blind to enjoy the proceedings, though we do not get much commentary from them this week. Vokai gets their torches and hilariously, Noura’s hair catches on fire briefly. She pats it out quickly. Probst starts with Jason, who explains how he has been on the outs of the tribe since the beginning due to paranoia and that the whole island of the idols season is playing on that paranoia. Rob and Sandra giggle silently in their hideout at the talk of paranoia. Tommy agrees with Probst’s assessment that this is an easy vote, but you gotta feel sympathy for someone on the outs. However, you don’t want it to be you. Kellee talks about Jason not being aware of what the “group culture” was about and just shut up with that woke-ass group-think everybody-in-lockstep nonsense. There is a difference between aberrant behavior and being a freethinker. Jason’s punishment of being made outcast in no way fits the crime of searching for an idol. Jason dumps out all his stuff to prove he does not have an idol. Molly speaks up, lawyer to lawyer, and claims she is offended by his feelings of being in purgatory. She claims none of them feel that way and they all think he is cool. LIES! Noura responds to Probst by saying she sticks out, she knows she sticks out and she is okay with not sticking in. She does make an interesting point that we do not hear very often: her problems that she has in real life are being magnified by being in the game. There is a level of self-awareness with Noura that is refreshing, and if she keeps that up, it will go a long way to mitigate the mania that is sure to manifest in a couple of weeks. Dan, who had his own problems early on, brings up to Jeff that the people playing this game are a level above “who is irritating me today” type of gameplay, though I would suggest that Lairo’s ouster of Ronnie last week denies that statement. Probst turns to Jamal and asks if the pedal is to the metal and Jamal’s laid back response is nope, Survivor is a slooooow burn. Jason points out that Jamal didn’t even bring a bag to Tribal Council, and Rob turns to Sandra with a dramatic “Uh oh” as they both laugh silently at Jamal’s hubris. Jamal, losing some points in my view, condescendingly tells Jason that he doesn’t have to play the same game as Jason does right now, though he will likely have to do it in the future. Jamal is not wrong here, but his delivery leaves a lot to be desired. I’m just glad, however, that he is wearing a shirt. Kellee obliges Probst by saying after tonight’s vote this group is going to be gone forever. And with that, it’s time to vote. Probst goes to tally the votes. Jason. Noura. Molly. Jason. Molly. Molly. Molly. Molly. And with that, it’s enough. Molly the Smug Smiling Queen of Vokai is voted out. Sandra whispers in the duck blind what we are all thinking: “Dang, they played her ass.” Indeed, Sandra. Let's hope there is more of that to come.
  23. She seemed flexible as to who to vote off, so I suspect she will last awhile using Sandra's strategy: Anyone but me.
  24. Seemed more like he was always on the verge of punching someone in the face. Which I can respect.
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