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MrsGryn

Survivor 37 - Episode 12 - "At times, you may feel like David fighting Goliath"

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MrsGryn   

The star of tonight’s episode is not the family visits. It is not the blindside at Tribal Council. It isn’t even Probst’s shirts. It is a little green monster called Jealousy.

But first there is the post tribal confusion by those who thought Alison was going with those who tossed their alliance aside. Nick asks Christian to explain why they flipped on Carl, especially after Nick, Carl, and Davie all used their advantages and idols to save Christian’s backside last time. Nick is not wrong here. In fact, he isn’t wrong throughout the entire episode and suddenly by the end, I am thinking Nick is the real frontrunner at this point. Christian does insist that next time, they will get out Alison and that Gabby is totally with them. Nick is a little smarter than the average physicist, though, and tries to get through to Christian that Gabby is with the Goliaths. He makes no headway because of course Christian could not possibly be wrong!

Day 31 and it is Reward Challenge time! Probst is wearing a Behr Paint Ocean Front shirt, for those keeping score at home. Jeff gets right to it: time for visits from loved ones. Who do we get?

Hazel, Davie’s mom. She is lovely! Very elegant, even schlepping through the sand to hug her son. She tells Probst about Davie always running off to explore and bringing home frogs and snakes to share with her. The rest of the Survivors laugh and recognize the boy in the man. Hazel also talks about how lovable Davie is and calls him her most lovable child. Gee, I hope he doesn’t have siblings.

Willa, Alison’s mom is next. They have a tearful reunion, but all I can think about is that Alison must take completely after her dad. The only thing she and her mom have in common is the same hair color.

Eric is Kara’s brother. He’s passably handsome, which is nice, but the two of them have an obviously close relationship. Kara talks to Probst about how she is out there playing Survivor with people she wants to consider her friends but can’t really know their intentions, but when she sees Eric, she knows that here is a person who totally has her back. It is honestly very touching.

Jim, Nick’s dad is a mountain of a man in many ways. I’m not entirely convinced that Alison’s mom isn’t actually Nick’s mom and Nick’s dad isn’t Alison’s mom. Did someone screw up in Central Casting when it came to this episode? Jim is a full foot plus taller than Nick. Actually they have the same face, though I did not get a good look at Jim’s teeth to see if he has the same wolfish incisors are Nick. There is a story told about Jim selling blood in order to put food on the table for Nick and his siblings, just to reiterate that things were bleak down in the ol’ holler.

Encarnita, Gabby’s mom comes out and like any good Asian mom tells her she looks too skinny. Mom tells Jeff that Gabby has always been a Type A, like her dad, which nice to get a jab in at your husband on national TV there, Encarnita. Apparently Gabby cries on the phone to her mom when there isn’t a Survivor camera pointing in her face, so more power to you, Mom.

Ana, Angelina’s mom comes out and they of course hug and cry. She loves her mom but then of course has to tell Ana all about how great she was negotiating for rice the day before and sitting out immunity to procure that rice because she is sticking to who she is out there. Good Lord, it is so self-serving and obnoxious! There is a great reaction shot of some of the other Survivors. Christian can’t even look up, Alison is looking over at him and laughing, and Davie has a pained grin on his face.

Josh, Mike’s boyfriend of six years, comes out. They hug, and Probst asks Mike about their relationship. Apparently opposites attract! As if I didn’t learn that lesson from Paula Abdul back in 1988. Mike has some funny moments as he tells Jeff that seeing everyone’s loved ones makes it real that they all have a network of people who love them and support them, and he apologizes for anything he has done or said through the course of the game. It’s funny that Mike says it like that since he’s been pretty mild from what we’ve been shown, other than with CutABitchFace of course. Mike hopes that it does not screw up his game and I feel fairly certain that since he has managed to survive in Hollywood, he will be just fine getting back into cutthroat mode soon enough.

Finally, Emily, Christian’s girlfriend comes out. First of all, the poor girl’s face is beet red. Is there no one on the Survivor crew who could loan her a little sunscreen? Second of all, she is just about as nerdy as Christian but in a much more inward, shy way. It appears to me that just being there on camera was a bit of a trial for her. She doesn’t say much, which is probably the norm. Their interactions are awkward, and again I suspect that is the norm for these two. He says it is great to see her, but much harder to watch her walk away, which is sweet. Christian appears to have strong emotions attached to Emily.

You know who else has strong emotions? Gabby. She has a game face on but there are a few shots of her looking decidedly unhappy. Was the girlfriend a surprise to Gabby, or, like it did with Mike seeing everyone’s loved ones, make it real?  And will this cloud her judgment? Spoiler alert: yes.

Hey, we still have a challenge to get through! Survivors will be divided into pairs tethered together. They will go through an obstacle, dig in a sand pit for keys, unlock two balls and each person will have to land one ball on the crossbar of tall posts. Things move along, but Nick and Angelina are way behind in getting to the keys, but they end up being the first to release their balls. Finally everyone is shooting balls. Davie gets one to stay on the crossbar first, but then Nick lands his and miracle upon miracles! Angelina gets hers to stay and they win! The reward is a BBQ on a barge. They get to pick two players to go with them and their loved ones. Nick picks Davie and his mom, and Angelina picks Mike. Probst has nothing for Christian, Alison, Kara, and Gabby.

The reward really is a barge on the water with a BBQ. And here I was expecting that barge from “Crazy Rich Asians.” So disappointing. Honestly, though, that floating pontoon boat is just bobbing around on the water like a cork in a whirlpool. This would not be a reward for me. I’d stick to solid land and call my orders in via megaphone. Nick’s dad, Jim, is being the Dad and manning the grill. Everyone gets time with their loved ones, and also they talk some strategy. Davie nods and agrees to this being the final four, and as always that is what you should do when on one of these things and someone wants you to be in their alliance. Always agree immediately and decide later! Davie is actually unsure about this alliance since, as he helpfully reminds me, Nick, Angelina, and Mike were all on that shitshow of a tribe, Jabeni, together. Davie may not be wrong.

Meanwhile over on the KaloKalo beach, Christian is talking nonstop about Emily to Kara, while Gabby listens. Gabby has this sudden epiphany after watching Christian and Emily interact for all of five minutes that the way Christian handled his girlfriend by comforting her was (drumroll please) EXACTLY how he has been handling her on the island! By comforting her! That’s his thing! Yeah, let’s lay this all on Christian and not Gabby’s endless void of need that swirls around her. Why, if it weren’t for Christian she would not have sobbed once out there! So since he is playing up this role, she now knows she has to play for herself. She approaches Alison about voting out Christian. Her logic is that they made every move together, but Christian is getting all the credit for making those moves. I find this plausible, but when you are a quiet person partnered with a talker, then this is what happens. A cousin once said to me it was obvious I wore the pants in my family, and I had a hard time getting that just because I was a talker and my husband is not, that people would assume it was not an equal partnership. Whose fault is it? My husband’s? Mine? The outsiders peering in? Probably a combination but then we aren’t playing for a million dollars, so we don’t give any actual shits about correcting anyone’s impression of our family dynamics. Gabby wants respect in this game, and the only way to do this is slay her number one ally.

Ally. You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Immunity Alliance time! Probst is wearing a Behr Paint Tornado Season shirt, for those keeping score at home. This is a simple challenge: stand on a narrow beam with one foot in front of the other. Balance an upright pole in one palm as it presses against a board that hold up a ball balanced precariously on the other end of the board. If the pole moves off the board or the Survivor falls off the beam, a bucket of water will fall. So this is a slow and steady and Pilates based challenge. Once again, no one is wearing a hat in the full sun, or is anyone even covering their head with their buffs. Survivors ready? GO! And within a minute, Mike has dropped his bucket and he is out. After five minutes, the Survivors have to move their front foot to become their back foot. They will stay there for ten minutes. This goes on for a little while but Alison is shaking so badly that she moves and her bucket falls. Angelina follows shortly thereafter. Fifteen minutes in, Probst orders them to move their feet again so the current front foot is behind now. The round will last for twenty minutes. Nick eventually loses his ball and is out. Christian’s entire arm starts shaking badly and he suddenly steps off. The final two are Davie and Kara, with the rock steady Kara taking the win.

Pre-tribal scramble finds Gabby and Christian walking and talking, deciding to vote out Alison. Gabby goes to Davie and Nick and brings up voting out Christian. Nick is surprised by her offer, but he is happy about voting out Christian due to the betrayal with Carl. There is some talk among Nick, Davie, Mike, and Angelina, which Nick suggesting that they throw two votes to Gabby in case Christian uses his idol. Davie, meanwhile, is not liking what is happening and he goes to Christian to blabber what has been happening behind the nerd’s back. Yes, dude, your erstwhile BFF out there on the island, that you would likely never have betrayed, has just launched a torpedo aimed straight for your poop deck. He is really having a hard time believing it, but Davie assures him that even Nick is willing to vote him out. Christian tries to make up to Nick by apologizing, but he forgets that Nick is a prosecutor. This kind of thing doesn’t really work on an attorney in that position. He’s heard it all before, dude.

Tribal Council, night 32. Probst is wearing a Behr Paint Charismatic Sky shirt, for those keeping score at home. The jury comes in and Carl looks like he has been taking lessons on facial expressions from CutABitchFace. Probst dives right into the last tribal when people were fooled by the choices made by Christian and Gabby to side with the Goliaths. Nick outright blames Christian, but then states they rebuilt their friendship. Jeff has them talk about why they choose who they vote for tonight, and Angelina says it is time to get rid of people you don’t see yourself with at the end. Nick wraps it up neatly by stating you are voting both for the jury person and the people you want to go up against at the final Tribal Council. Well, yes. That should drive every vote the Survivors make on this show! And with that it’s time to vote.

Probst tallies the votes, then asks if anyone would like to play an immunity idol. Christian, ever the drama queen, waits a beat too long as Jeff starts to say okay. He asks Jeff to wait a moment while he looks around at the faces of the other Survivors. He sees something and states that he is going to play his idol. I mean, he goes into a long talk about having the idol in his shoe for the last four tribals, how it might be a mistake, but you get the gist. Probst confirms it is a hidden immunity idol and that any votes cast for Christian do not down. Let’s begin.

Christian. Does not count.

Christian. Does not count.

Christian. Does not count.

Christian. Does not count.

Christian. Does not count.

Alison. That counts.

Gabby. That also counts.

Gabby. And that one REALLY counts because Gabby is now the sixth member of their journey. Shockingly, this is one time where she does not cry or whine. I am not going to miss her.

However, I hope Emily has a home security system.

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There seemed to be something in my eyes during the annual family visits.  Though, I was giving Angelina the side-eye since she was still campaigning rather than enjoying the moment with her mother.  Seeing/meeting(?) Christian's girlfriend was all sorts of awkward.  I swear he's shown Gabby more physical affection/comfort in their 30 days together than he did with this woman he calls his girlfriend.  I will be shocked if they're still together at the finale/reunion.  Along the same lines, Mike and his boyfriend were awfully "buddy" considering they've been together for 6 years.  I was thinking that guy was some random Tinder hookup until the very end when Mike said "I love you".  

What I found so astounding about Gabby's departure was watching the voting reveal.  I was sure that Davie and Christian had written Gabby's name, knowing that Christian would play the idol and their vote(s) would determine who goes.  Quite shocked to see it was actually Mike and Angelina who voted for Gabby.  Not quite sure that I understand their motive/plan, so color me intrigued.  

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tlh9   

Okay, so one thing, is that i'm glad I'm not the only one who thought Gabby's moves were perhaps spurred by jealously.  My Aunt thought so, too, while we watched the episode, but said it out loud first.  But I'm glad it wasn't just us.  I thought she seemed *totally* jealous!

Also, was gonna comment much like @copssister noticed... that with Mike and his boyfriend was just weird-seeming, as in awkward... like they really didn't want to touch each other all that much.  I was thinking even "buddies" who are guys often interact more comfortably with each other.  Maybe it was just that Mike really reeks by now?  Did they have some huge fight that was left unresolved before Mike's departure?  Also I'll admit I had no idea Mike was gay, so was a little surprised.

And yeah, Christian and his girlfriend, that was kind of awkward, too... but then being a nerd myself, for two completely nerdy people, not entirely unexpected nor unexplainable.

I was really only surprised by Davie's vote... I thought he wanted to keep Christian, and why did he (Davie) let him (Christian) in on the plot to get rid of him so that Christian would play his idol, if Davie actually wanted him out enough to vote for him?

Christian was and has been pretty set on Allison.  So far as Mike & Angelina voting for Gabby, that side briefly discussed splitting their votes between Christian & Gabby, so that if Christian played his idol (someone on that side knew he had one, or had heard or something) they could get rid of Gabby as 2nd choice.

 

Anyway, another thoroughly-enjoyed recap, @MrsGryn!  Enjoyed it with some PBJ toast.  

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When Mike and his dad were on TAR, they made it known that both of them were gay.

Edited to add:  Great recap, Gryn!  

Edited by elizabethann

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tlh9   

Really??  Wow.  I remember them being on TAR, but somehow totally blanked on that.  I'm surprised I would forget such a thing!

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