May 1, 2020
Survivor: Another One Bites the Dust
On Survivor: old grudges die hard, a reward challenge has mixed results, and immunity is a dangerous game.
We begin at Angkor in the wake of Peih-Gee’s dismissal. Jeff Varner knows that, even though he technically didn’t get even one vote at the last Tribal Council, he easily could have gone home.
Most of the other tribe members feel the same way. If they end up back at Council, they’ll just vote Jeff out. Problem solved. Team united. But then, there’s Abi:
She’s still mad that Woo voted against her last time. And one other time. She thinks maybe he should go home.
In the midst of this discussion, Angkor also has time to lament their poor camp conditions. Andrew admits that being on the wet and hungry tribe has been a real contrast from being on the Old Bayon, where “somebody (Joe) is feeding us and we’re sleeping in hammocks (that Joe made).”
Over at New Bayon, the focus is on the hidden immunity idol. Jeremy doesn’t want the others to know he has it, so he still has to spend time pretending to look for it, which must be tedious, and encouraging his alliance members to look for it. He sends Fishbach in particular on a wild goose chase.
Next, it’s time for a reward challenge. What are they playing for? It’s a barbecue grill and a ton of meat. That’s the first place prize. Second place gets some lesser foodstuffs, and third place gets nada.
The game involves racing into the water to grab a series of sandbags. Each sandbag gets placed on one end of a lever and a person hops on the other end, optimally launching the sandbag up and into a basket. The first team to get all their sandbags in the basket wins.
Oh, and it’s a so-called “hero challenge,” meaning each team picks one person to do the task and hangs all their hopes on her/him. Angkor picks Andrew, Bayon picks Jeremy, and Ta Keo picks Jo… wait, what?, Ta Keo picks Terry.
As the fellas race to gather the sandbags, it looks like Terry might win this thing for Ta Keo, but he misses some baskets that Andrew makes, and that’s the difference.
It’s Andrew first, Terry second, and Jeremy third. Angkor is elated to have won. Tasha lets it slip that they really need this reward because they “basically haven’t eaten in four days.” Angkor heads back to camp and gets to cookin’.
Angkor’s surprising win has an effect on the other teams as well. For the first time in a long time, they have to consider the idea that Angkor might not lose the immunity challenge. Bayon, in particular, is worried that they might end up at Tribal Council. It seems that the consensus there is still against Spencer. In addition to being a former Ta Keon, he is also, nominally, a male.
Monica explains the logic, saying that not only do they need to “keep the girl count up,” but also to “keep the boys’ count down.”
Thanks for clearing that up for us, Monica. It seems that she’s hoping for a girls’ alliance after the merge.
At Ta Keo, night has fallen and most folks are asleep. But not Kass. She’s gathering random beads and twine from all the Survivor swag that’s lying about and seems to be working on some kind of art project. Is it a faux immunity idol? Nah. It’s a homely little homemade gift for Kelley Wentworth’s birthday.
Morning brings the next immunity challenge. This one involves one person per team (the caller) sitting in a glorified director’s chair and shouting while all the others, blindfolded, must gather super-heavy puzzle pieces and carry them to the puzzle-assembly area. Once gathered, the teams take off their blindfolds and build a giant puzzle. The first two teams to finish win immunity.
This turns out to be insanely dangerous, with people bumping into one another, stepping on one another, and tripping over puzzle pieces.
Kimmi is calling for Bayon and leading them to what looks like a victory. Angkor, called by Jeff Varner, is right behind. Meanwhile, Ta Keo is in the land of confusion. For one thing, Keith can’t hear caller Kass. Terry has a puzzle piece but no directions. It looks like they’re gonna lose and bad.
But that’s just until team hero Joe “Should have gotten picked for the reward challenge” Anglim starts grabbing puzzle pieces like they’re nothing and carrying them to the assembly area. It’s impossible to say how he knows without looking where the pieces are or where he is in relation to where they need to go.
Ta Keo pulls into second place. Everything is pretty close now, with all teams pulling off their blindfolds and starting to put their puzzles together. It’s a very close race, but then Jeff drops a puzzle piece on his own foot.
After that, Angkor slows way down. They are just worn thin, and people are leaning on the puzzle pieces and maybe passing out. Bayon and Ta Keo finish first and second, and Angkor looks to be at death’s door.
Probst has no sympathy. Handing out immunity idols to the other two tribes, he tells Angkor, “I’ve got nothing for you… except a date with me tonight at Tribal Council.” That’s cold.
Back at Camp Angkor, Andrew and Tasha tell Abi that the smart move is to get rid of the newly-injured Jeff, but Abi isn’t so sure. She still wants to vote against Woo because he voted against her.
When they get to Council, it’s another Big Brother-esque one, with two people obviously on the block and making their case to the rest. Jeff continues his butt-kissing campaign, emphasizes his supposed loyalty, and assures everyone he’s not a threat. Woo points out that if they have any hope of ever winning an immunity challenge, they’re going to need someone like him, someone with two working feet.
It’s time to vote, and Abi claims she still doesn’t know which way she’s going to go. As Woo goes to vote, she whispers, “Try not to write my name this time.” In the end, the votes are cast, and everyone votes out Jeff. I, for one, am sad to see him go. He was my little peanut butter cup.
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