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Survivor 38 - Episode 4 - This Just In! Once a Loser Tribe, Always a Loser Tribe

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This episode made me a little bit grateful for the Edge of Extinction twist, because it keeps alive the hopes that one of the players that I like, Dadbod Rick, will somehow flubber his way back into the game. As far as the others on Jurassic Island, I don’t care and in fact the precious few minutes we are subjected to the vocal stylings of Reem Daly make me want to drive a jar of peanuts into the TV.

Sidenote: that act would not have the same destructive satisfaction effect on flat screens as it would on the old tube variety of TVs.

Chris makes his way onto Loser Island and is not exactly greeted with open arms. Keith and Reem Daly both somehow blame Chris for their present circumstances. They are not exactly wrong, but they are not exactly right either. He is not the only one who cast a vote to oust them.

Manu beach has Wendy speaking of herself in the third person. She gives back the flint by hiding it in plain sight, then spills the beans to David about her “master plan” of freeing the chickens from their destiny in the stewpot. He cannot believe Wendy is actually trying to win the game and the writer is at a loss for words to try and make sense of her strategy. He is very nice about it, which is one of the things I have like about David. It is hard to recall him saying or being unkind to another player, outside of actual game play and voting them out. This was a problem I had with Mike White last season in that it was easy to see a small scratch on the surface would reveal a rather sharp interior, ready to wound. I don’t get a sense of that from David.

Challenge beach. Probst is wearing a Valspar Skywriter shirt, for those keeping score at home. Once Kama gets a load of the Manu tribe, sans Chris, there is a lot of shock and awe. Ron, when asked by Probst, says that it is shocking because Kama could see how Chris was carrying the rest of his tribe and his being voted out could be seen as a betrayal. Manu does not see it that way and Lauren sasses back that Kama has no idea what their camp like was life. Jeff takes that opportunity to tell everyone to Drop! Your! Buffs! The tribes are being changed from two to three. Great, now I have to reset all the tribal designations on the individual threads. Fuck you, Probst.

The new tribes break down as follows:

Manu (blue):  Aubry, Eric, Gavin, Victoria (Freckles), Wendy.

Kama (yellow): Aurora, Joe, Julia, Julie, Ron.

Lesu (green): David, Kelley, Lauren, Rick, Warthog.

Weirdly, other than Wendy, everyone ends up with their own tribe members. Much is made of this coincidence and the odds against it happening. If someone wants to do the math, please feel free. I won’t understand any of it.

Post tribe-swap, Joe is happy because he thinks he safer with Ron, Julia, and Julie. He’s already good with Aurora, so Joe pulls Ron aside – Ron, the same guy who was talking with Freckles when she stupidly talked about eliminating Joe while the returning player was crouching nearby. Joe! Where is your head at? Did you use up your brain cells growing that luxurious mane and hipster mustache? Ron, of course, goes right along with Joe’s alliance proposal like any smart player should do, but gleefully tells us that right before they went to the well, he instructed Julia to rifle through Joe’s bag to see if she could find an idol. As established on previous seasons, this is allowed but stealing the idol is not allowed. Chain of ownership for cheap shells on a leather thong is sacrosanct on Survivor. Julia found, as she put it, nothing in Joe’s pants.

New Lesu tribe finds their beach and then has to build a shelter from scratch. That seems a bit unfair since their numbers are smaller. I would not object to a partial shelter that the new tribe could complete easily enough without completely exhausting themselves. Lauren, meanwhile, is feeling nauseated from the rice and lack of other food. I am sure stress, tropical heat and lack of sleep have nothing to do with it. Her tribemates are concerned for her welfare, of course. None of these people, David, Dadbod Rick, Warthog, Kelley, and Lauren, show any sign of not caring for each other. Last season had such jerks on the Goliath tribe that it is a pleasant change to spend Survivor with seventy-five percent less assholes.

Neat underwater sequence as an octopus squirts a cloud of ink at the camera and shoots away quickly through the water as it evades the swimmer. No calamari at the crew’s Ponderosa camp tonight!

Manu tribe is given the grand tour by Wendy. The tour consists of the firepit, the well, the lagoon with the sharks. They all sit together on the beach and Wendy just lets loose with a barrage of information about her former tribemates. Aubry is nearly salivating at all the juicy tidbits and ammunition that Wendy is cheerfully sharing, oblivious to any possible need to keep it under wraps. A smarter player might have spun a tale of Chris the Dictatorial Asshole, but as we all know by now, Wendy is not a smart player. Speaking of which…night falls and she goes into stealth mode, sneaking into the chicken coop and taking the birds out to save their lives and set them free. Earlier she tried to convince the new Manu that the girls would start laying eggs any day now, but Eric was already figuring on cutting off a chicken head, then boiling it to remove the feathers. FYI the Internet says immerse it in hot water for no more than thirty seconds. Anyway, Wendy is now mighty pleased with herself for turning the chickens loose in the jungle where nothing bad ever happens.

Oh, good, we get a brief interlude at Extinction Island. Keith is having a moment and is considering hoisting the flag and leaving for a burger. He and Reem Daly are still mad at Chris and don’t give two shits if he is unhappy at his own blindside. Chris, using more words in one minute than he has all season, narrates how he thought he had to come out to Survivor and be perfect and blah blah blah. Okay, Solar Panel Sales boy. We get it. You are sad and put a lot of pressure on yourself. Now do something useful! Guess what? Chris picks up the fishing spear and nabs a few fish for supper. Suddenly he is no longer persona non grata with the two ingrates he is currently stuck with for a while. Hypocrites.

Immunity challenge time! Probst is wearing a Valspar Lost Atlantis shirt, for those keeping score at home. Multipart challenge again. Survivors will have to hurdle two very large a-frame structures while carrying coils of rope. They will then use the rope to pull a heavy crate to the finish, where they will open it and until bundles of stick-puzzle pieces. The first two tribes to complete the challenge win immunity. One gets the dragon statue idol, the second gets a neat eagle in flight statue, though I am sure Wendy could be convinced it is an homage to chickens. Survivors ready? GO!

Right from the start Lesu shows once again why as Manu they lost nearly every challenge as they are unable to attain the top of the first a-frame. Of course, if they still had Chris on the tribe they probably would have been up and over in no time. As it is, the boards are slippery and the other two tribes have the advantage of Joe on Kama and Eric on new Manu. Lesu’s attempts are pretty sad to watch, and for all his self-vaunted athletic prowess, I don’t see much effort from Warthog. His Survivor profile says he was in the military, though I was unable after a minute of Googling which branch he served, though later in the episode he confirms he was in the Army. But still, this kind of obstacle should have been babycakes to someone who went through basic training. I’m very disappointed in him. Finally it is Lauren, the sick girl, who gets to the top and uses the rope to pull up Kelley and the rest. On the second a-frame, which is higher, each tribe figures out how to use a human ladder to get to the apex and the tribes are actually sliding down the far side at pretty much the same time. Everyone is working the puzzles. Ron and Joe work together calmly on the puzzle for Kama and they finish first. Eric and Aubry work on it for Manu, but then Wendy has it and she switches out with Aubry to speed through it, leaving Lesu in third. New tribe name, same old losers. I am bummed because I would have liked to see what happened when the old Kama had to scramble to strategize. Kelley sums it up by calling them the Cleveland Browns of Survivor. Don’t feel so bad, Wentworth. At least you aren’t the ’62 Mets.

Whomp whomp. Sad trombone at Camp Lesu. Dadbod Rick jokes Lesu is just as good at losing as Manu. Really, none of them are very happy about it. Rick and David swear fealty to each other and decide that perhaps Lauren is the one to vote out since she is not eating and is getting weaker. David in face is certain that Kelley has the immunity idol which is why he wants to target Lauren. Joke’s on him, Lauren has the idol! On the flip side, Kelley and Lauren swear fealty to each other and discuss options, concluding that Dadbod Rick is most likely to switch loyalties. I think they are wrong on this. Warthog has my vote for Most Likely to Flip. On the other hand, David, once deprived of his solid ally Dadbod Rick, seems suspect because he will be looking out for number one. As well he and the rest of them should be. Well, the divide puts Warthog in the driver’s seat and he LOVES it. Nothing more beloved by an attention hog than, you know, attention.

Tribal Council time. BAT! Probst is wearing a Valspar Shark Loop shirt, for those keeping score at home. He asks Dadbod Rick for a news report and damn if the morning news anchor doesn’t nail it. “Dun dun dunnnnn! Lesu is less than we even expected! Love in Tribal Council but will it last? Good evening, this is Rick Devins and this may be my last report.” Everyone laughs, especially Probst. It’s cute, clever and witty. As tribal goes on, everyone affirms that they all love and respect each other, but everything else is crap. The emotion is so strong, in fact, Kelley gets very emotional and that is not her usual way of dealing with Survivor. David gets profound and talks about how much playing Survivor changed him and that he has tried to explain to his tribemates that there is something more valuable than the million dollar prize. Kelley nods along with him. Finally, Lauren explains to Probst that this tribal is not going to get ugly, it’s not going to get contentious, but lines will be drawn. Both Kelley and David insist that this tribal council is very special out of all of them, but in a sad way. And with that, it’s time to vote.

Probst gets the urn to tally the votes.

Lauren. Rick. Lauren. Rick. Rick Devins.

And with that, Dadbod Rick is out of the game. He turns to the tribe after his torch is snuffed and grins. “I take it all back, you guys are the WORST!” He exhorts them to go win something and walks off into the jungle. The rest of Lesu is sad and Kelley is still crying. David seems pensive.

But is Dadbod’s story over? Let’s follow him down the path and find out! He comes to the crossroads, reads the signs silently (which, thank you), picks up the torch and heads down to find the ferryman.

Next week, Warthog gets on Kelley’s bad side, Freckles wants a girls’ alliance, and Reem Daly continues her reign of Bitch Island by greeting Dadbod Rick with the friendly, “Man you are not in good graces here.” Jeebus, lady, it’s been nine days and you aren’t out of the game. GET OVER IT.

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I pray to the Survivor gods that Reem isn’t the one that gets back in the game. She’d better not try any of the “bad editing” bullshit at the reunion show because I think they’re capturing her perfectly.

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On 3/14/2019 at 2:27 PM, MrsGryn said:

seventy-five percent less assholes

my favorite line of the whole thing, and it had some competition.

I was impressed by and thankful for Dadbod Rick's silent sign reading abilities, too... and also did not like he was the one to go.  I wanted to see him and David work together longer.

Reem??  holy fucking shit, is she grating.  Bitch Island is a much better (and apter) name at this point!

Thank you again, MrsG... loved it!

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