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MrsGryn

Survivor 40 - Episode 4 - Bring Me the Head of C-3PO

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MrsGryn   

Last week, Sele lost again (three times a loser!) and Adam tried to worm his weaselly way into an alliance with everyone, including Boston Rob. He ended up being blindsided in the vote. Oh, not that he went to Dinosaur Island, which would have been a better choice than harmless Ethan (did you know he survived cancer? Twice?). No, Adam was kept around as a whipping boy and he knows it. He knows it soooo bad. One positive thing I will say about Adam is that he owns his errors, which can be rare among Survivors. Post-tribal finds Adam on the Apology Tour with his erstwhile alliance of Yosemite Ben, Jeremy, Michele, and Denise.

As dysfunctional as Sele is, over on Dakal beach is nothing but love and coconuts and fishheads. Yul lets us know that while they all get along, the core alliance is him along with Wendell, Sophie, and Nick. It helps that this tribe has the seeming prime location: nice beach, good cover, plentiful fishing (is that a red snapper frying in the pan?) and a poolside view of Dinosaur Island. Seriously, they seem to be situated one good swim away from the Edge of Extinction, close enough to see the Reem Daly Memorial Surrender Flag. Sophie compares it to a class trip from high school where they all went to a prison to get scared straight. Yes, it is totally the same thing as being incarcerated in a federal penitentiary where if you raise the flag in prison, they have to let you go and take you to a tropical resort with food, fruity drinks, and a first class plane ticket home.

What Dakal is seeing from afar is the new challenge on Jurassic Beach. Ambuh finds a box by the flag and carries it over to her fellow castaways. They have a chance to earn a fire token by climbing to the top of the island to bring back 20 fire logs (each). The catch is that they can only bring back one log at a time, so that is twenty trips up and back, and it has to be done before sundown. At first, Ethan thinks it will be a walk in the park and that he can power through. Danni and Ambuh take the slow and steady course. Natalie, on the other hand, proves she is more beast-mode than Caleb could ever dream of by actually lapping the other exiles. Ethan starts having real, literally physically debilitating issues. We don’t actually see him lose consciousness, but he slips on the lava rocks. The next minute, a medic is bending over him (Where oh where is Cute British Doctor?) and taking his blood pressure. It is low. Very low. About as low as Reem Daly was feeling on Day Three of her Exile experience, but not as low as I felt every time she was on my TV screen. The medic instructs him to take a lot of rests, but Ethan is pretty determined to complete the task. Natalie is the first to finish, unsurprisingly, Amber not too far behind. Both women break down crying with emotional release. Danni the Beanpole also finishes, but Ethan is still going. On his last trip up the mountain, all three women go with him for support. It is a kind gesture, certainly one they did not have to do after their own physical exertion. Ethan expresses his gratitude, in his very soft spoken Ethan-kind-of-way. That humble quality has followed him since his days in Africa on Season Three, a gratitude for being wherever he was and whatever he was experiencing. I can only imagine that this is what helped him survive his bouts with cancer. I would, however, prefer that the editors would stop dropping references to it every forty-five seconds. That is not the entirely of Ethan, people!

Sele beach. Rob and Michele have a lovely conversation about their times playing Survivor, and Michele brings up her “controversial” win and the backlash she received. Rob tells her so what, a win is a win. Good advice from a man who was seen – and still is in a lot of ways – as a major villain. Michele’s main failing is being up against two more popular and better players and benefiting from a bitter jury. I certainly groused about her win when it happened, and I stand by my viewpoint of her season to this day. What I like about her on Winners of War is that we are definitely seeing more of her gameplay this time. She is coming across as cool, levelheaded and smart about what she does. So far, so good. Less impressive on the second go ‘round is Adam the Weasel. Jeremy, hilariously, compares him to one of his kids trying to make amends after screwing up by doing extra chores and actually helping out around camp. Jeremy says that as long as Adam doesn’t go back to being sneaky, they are all good. The problem for Adam is that he is now the enemies of Rob and Parvati, two great players. The three have a conversation on the beach and Rob pointedly tells the Weasel, “Who is to say who is telling the truth in this game.” Prophetic words. Even though Adam declares that he is not going to spill any beans to Rob ever again, nor align with them, even though they are trying to get him to talk about the others. As soon as he leaves, Rob turns to Parvati and says, “Should I bury him?” Oh yes please! Meeting up with Jeremy and Michele on the beach, Rob – who should have been an actor – asks, “What should I do about Adam? Because he keeps trying to talk to me. I’m trying to hear him but I’m not going there with him again.” And it works. Jeremy declares that Adam has got to be the next one to go. And that’s why you Never! Trust! Boston Rob!

Speaking of people you shouldn’t trust while playing Survivor, on the Dakal Tribe, everyone is chilling, hanging out, and smelling Tyson’s clam breath. I wish that was something I made up, but no. Tyson and Sarah have a bond, and we see some scenes highlighting Tyson’s particular brand of dry humor. He is a player that took me awhile to warm up to the first time he played. He was, is, strange-looking: tall, rope thin, craggy even at a young age. But then I always like the oddballs on Survivor. Greg in the first season, Frank in Africa, Shii Ann in China, Jeff Kent…though that might have been because he had been a Dodger. In any case, eventually Tyson’s offbeat sense of humor and weird self-deprecation by way of humble-brag, finally got through to me and I’ve loved his appearances ever since that happened. Also this: The Star Wars That I Used to Know. So when he pulls Tony and Sandra aside to talk about how the rest of the tribe wants to go after the people with connections, the three of them and Sarah. His mistake here is that he mentioned early on getting rid of Queen Sandra, and that, my friends, is a fatal mistake. She listens, uses her patented line of, “As long as it isn’t me, I’m okay with whoever goes” and WTF IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE!! YOU NEED TO VOTE HER OUT IMMEDIATELY! Honestly, if they keep Sandra in the game and she is there at the end, she is going to have to win the game just for pulling the wool over everyone’s eyes. I mean, these people are supposed to be great players! Come on!

Immunity challenge time! Probst is wearing a Behr Paint English Channel shirt, for those keeping score at home. The set-up is out in the middle of a coral reef surrounded by turquoise water and several floating platforms. Dakal gives the immunity skull back to Probst, and I get a text from one of my BFFs saying, “This immunity idol looks like C-3PO.” She is not wrong and now I can never unsee Threepio’s skull being handed off to the tribes. All we need is some Ewoks to set some traps in the jungle and get ready to roast Tony for dinner. Anyway, the challenge is one of the patented multipart tasks: the tribes will have three people in a heavy wooden boat being towed by the rest of the tribe swimming in the water. They will stop at a platform where the three boat people will take turns climbing up to a high, narrow beam, jumping off and grabbing one of three keys as they leap. Once all three keys are retrieved and the jumpers back in the boat, the swimmers will tow the boat to another platform, where the keys will unlock large block puzzle pieces. First to finish the puzzle wins immunity and everyone’s favorite prize, egg-laying chickens. But first, Dakal has two extra people. Who will sit out besides Sandra? In a funny bit, Parvati nominates the bench to be called Sandra’s Bench from now on. There are some “ooohs!” from the crowd, but Sandra just laughs. She gives no fucks about it. Joining her will be Tony. Survivors ready? GO!

On Sele, Rob, Yosemite Ben, Michele and Jeremy are the swimmers. Reaching for the keys will be Adam, Parvati, and Denise. The three shortest people on the tribe. Let’s keep that in mind, shall we? Over on Dakal, the four swimmers are Sarah, Wendell, Tyson, and Yul. This means Sophie, Kim (tall, tall Kim) and Nick are in the boat. The swim goes well, with Yosemite Ben and Tyson leading their respective teams. Where it breaks down is the leap and grab for the key. On Dakal, Sophie misses her first attempt, but Nick grabs his and Kim does as well, knifing into the water like a pro. Nick manages to get the last key and Dakal is on their way to the puzzle platform. For Sele, the story is very, very different. Denise misses, then Parvarti misses by a mile. Finally Adam tries and while he gets the key, he manages to bang the hell out of his foot on the wooden beam. In their defense, the three Sele tribe members are both short and that beam is freaking narrow, shaky, and just looking at it feels unstable. Also…SHORT PEOPLE!! So it is no small surprise when Dakal is already working on their puzzle and Sele is still struggling to get two of their keys. It is, as Probst loves to shout, a total blow out. We are shown Adam trying over and over again to get the key, though Probst narrates all three of them are missing, so I am thinking the girls still tried, we just didn’t see it. Finally Adam manages to grab it and get back to the boat. The girls unceremoniously haul him in and the swimmers take off in record time, pulling that boat like there was a Hantz in the water circling their feet. So then what happens is Rob at his best: while Sarah and Nick have had all the time I the world to get their puzzle done or at least organized before putting it together, Rob and Michele just start slamming pieces on their posts with very little hesitation. And what happens? Sele actually wins the challenge! They jump around with joy, so much happiness in fact that Yosemite Ben kisses Rob on the cheek. Probst is LOVING it. It isn’t so much the tribe he is rooting for, it is the dramatic tension of a massive comeback that he loves. The Dakal tribe members are in shock at their loss, none moreso than Nick. Sidenote: when I paused the playback, the screen landed on a side view of Nick with his mouth open. He really does have some serious vampire teeth. Also he cannot do puzzles worth shit.

image.png 

I mean....how can he stay out in the sun with those fangs? 

Post challenge, Dakal members discuss who to vote out. Tyson is strongly pulling for Nick to go and all of them mention that Nick doesn’t do anything at camp. Everyone tells him yes, absolutely they will vote out Nick. Tyson is feeling pretty good, which as a four-time player, he should know better. Wendell particularly says that Tyson is much too well-connected to the players on the other tribe and he is concerned about what happens if there is a swap or merge. Tony is more interested in keeping Tyson as a meatshield and he goes to Sarah, who talks to Kim. They are good with it but unfortunately the plan depends on Sandra voting to keep Tyson. Even when Sandra acknowledges that it would be a smarter play to keep the tall lunk around, it’s Sandra. It is about petty revenge for having the nerve to suggest she should be voted out before Amber. Now, at this point, since they mentioned Tyson going over and over again, I felt pretty good about his chances of staying in the tribe. Oh, sweet summer child.

Tribal Council. Probst is wearing a Behr Paint Hillside Grove shirt, for those keeping score at home. Here is the thing about this tribal council. The Dakal tribe gets along really well. They like each other, they work and play well with each other, and no one is going to say anything bad about the other members, despite being ready to vote someone out in a few minutes. And because of that, the talk at Tribal is pretty damn boring. There are no fights, no whispering, no last minute shenanigans or plotting. One funny moment is when Yul says he thought before the game that Tony was going to be a real asshole and yet he is not. Tony laughs. Also Tyson and Sandra fistbump over being four time players. And really, that’s about it, so time to vote.

Probst goes to tally the votes. Nick. Kim (what?). Tyson. Tyson. Tyson. Tyson. Tyson. With that, it is enough and Tyson is the newest member of the Reem Daly Memorial Tribe. Here’s hoping he can give Natalie a run for her fire tokens, because Danni, Amber, and Ethan sure aren’t living up to their potential. And who gets Tyson’s fire token? Nick, but only because Tyson wasn’t allowed to swallow it.

Next week: Drop! Yo! Buff! Also, apparently Michele used to date Wendell. Ohhhhkay.

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uaintjak   

Nick voted for Kim in case Tyson had an idol.  He also apologized to her as he voted.  Leave my beer-gut vampire boyfriend alone! (Blood-gut?  I don't know.  He has great hair though.)

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AVorlon   

One thing became clear for me in this episode, and that was that you have to forfeit all your fire tokens  when you leave. Tyson only had one to bequeath, but if you have more than one you can probably split them up any way you want. 

I also noticed for the first time that Natalie is kind of a bad-ass competitor, being a cross-fit instructor. She already has enough tokens to get back into the game.

Also liked Tyson showing up on Exile and remarking about how much firewood they had. If he only knew! 

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MrsGryn   

Thanks!
 

Okay I missed Nick on his vote for Kim - thanks jak. I would have liked it if he had thrown a vote at Sandra and kept it anonymous, though. That would have messed with her head.

 

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