Well, I didn’t get around to doing a full recap on last week’s Survivor, which is not to say that I didn’t enjoy it. Truth is I was pretty busy this week, and at the end of the day, while the episode was fun, there wasn’t really that much crazy shit to make fun of. Well, I shouldn’t say that. There’s always mockery to be had. Nevertheless, with only a few hours until the next installment kicks off, I’ll do my best to give a casual overview of the latest antics of our favorite castaways.The episode began with Caryn fretting over possible extermination. As Tom put it, she was “more nervous than a long tail cat in a room full of rocking chairs.” Yeah, it was like the time she thought her Streisand tickets were lost in the mail. Man, that was intense.
Anyway, the Reward Challenge was simple enough. People would have to answer island trivia, and if they were correct, they got to lower another tribe member’s lantern towards the ocean. Once a lantern had been lowered three times, that person would be out. After explaining the rules, Probst happily asked, “Wanna know what you’re playing for?” Suddenly, a yacht floated into view and blew its foghorn. Unfortunately, Probst had some bad news: “Oh, that yacht’s for me, not you. But whoever wins gets a garlic masher! Sorry, my yacht ate up most of the budget.”
Okay, okay. The reward actually was the yacht. The winner would get to spend the night on the mighty seacraft where he or she would be pampered and loved, CBS style. That’s right: endless repeats of Everybody Loves Raymond and King of Queens. Well, either that or a massage. We’d find out later.
Anyway, after everyone answered the first question correctly, Tom was chosen to lower the first lamp. “I don’t want to be first to start this nastiness!” he complained, adding, “I’m just me, plain old Tom. Just a nice guy. I couldn’t harm a butterfly. Now everyone turn around while a stab you in the back.”
Well, everyone seemed to target Caryn at first, using the lame excuse that she’s won so many rewards (huh?). “Every reward we get, Caryn gets all the food,” complained Ian. Yes, that would explain why she’s so morbidly obese. Honestly, if Ian weren’t the resident skeleton, I’d happily nickname Caryn “Twigarella”. Eh, I’ll do it anyway. Twigarella. Heh.
Anyway, one of the joys of this sort of Reward Challenge was that in people’s greedy desire to sleep over in a yacht, they quietly revealed their pecking orders, and in the case of Katie, she screwed over Ian, even after they had made an albeit informal (and most likely very smelly) deal. Ian looked more shocked than the day he found out he needed to bathe.
Even more telling, however, was the moment when Gregg asked Jenn’s permission to lower her lantern. Of course she said no, but more importantly, Probst immediately jumped all over them, provoking the team by constantly asking “You just asked permission?????” Settle down, Jeffy. This isn’t the crazy world of Rock ‘N’ Roll Jeopardy.
Eventually, Gregg won the prize after Jenn answered a question incorrectly (She thought coconut crabs could jump three feet in the air after eating. That is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. And yet, I’d be really intrigued to see such hopping crustaceans.) Anyway, Gregg was allowed to bring two people on the yacht; so he selected Jenn and Katie, leaving the other three to angrily commiserate back at camp. Ian felt betrayed by Katie and wisely opted to turn the game on its head. It was clear that Gregg and Jenn had all the power now. Ian, Tom, and Caryn had to do something to reposition themselves. But what would it be??
Over on the yacht, Gregg and his bitches received Micronesian massages. Sadly my prediction for an “Eye on American” brainwashing session went unrealized. Too bad. They really could have learned a lot from that bio on Paul Anka. Plus, it would have been important to see just one more Greg Gumbel interview with Terrell Owens.
Anyway, Gregg’s tropical massage soon turned all boy-on-boy as a goofy looking white guy tagged in as the masseur. Turns out this was Gregg’s best friend from home, and after hugs and a few “Oh my god!”s, everyone reconvened on the deck where the staff presented the foursome with an array of food. As they all noshed, I enjoyed Jenn’s “Duh” moment of the day as she poked at a brown, circular item and asked, “What’s this?” “This is an onion ring,” answered Katie. Jenn then pointed to a long slender item and asked “And this?” A french fry. “How about this?” Jenn asked, holding up a white, puffy thing. That would be a marshmallow. “Oh. Tee-hee!” replied Jenn, adding “Please pass the white stuff in the shaker that makes my food taste salty.”
Well, all this food was nice and all, but I really felt like the scene needed to be more gooey. Thankfully, the producers surprised Jenn and Katie with their very own relatives, and after tears of joy were had by all, the group went out and swam with dolphins. Jenn couldn’t believe how fortunate she was. “No way! No way!” she chirped. Dolphin? IN THE OCEAN??? This is insane!!!! Amazingly, a dolphin poked its head out of the water and said to Jenn, “And I thought I was cute. Man, I look like Bea Arthur next to you.”
Back at the camp, Ian, Caryn, and Tom realized it was time to do something drastic. They would force a tie with Gregg and Caryn. The rules state that if there’s a tie, the two people being voted on become immune, and the others must pull a rock from a bag. Whoever pulls the purple rock goes home. Hey, when did Survivor drop the rule that whoever had the most previous votes would go home in a tie-break situation? Anyway, I had to give props to these three. Tom and Ian realized that if they didn’t force the tie, Gregg and Jenn would pick them off anyway, so they might as well gamble with the stone. Ah, I LOVE logic! It’s so rare to find on this show.
With their plan in place, Ian explained how important it was to execute their scheme properly: “This is kind of like taking a bag of potato chips from a fat man. You can do it, but you better do it quick. Otherwise he can turn around and sit on you.” Uh, if you’re six inches tall. Does Ian envision himself to be Stewart Little?
As for Caryn, it was extremely important that she pull a Janu and act sullen around camp, like she already knows she’s gone. “Don’t be chippa!” admonished Tom, suddenly busting out a Boston accent. “I’m a very good actress,” Caryn reassured us. She then recited a scene from Yentl to prove her point.
Later, as the returning tribe members approached the shore, Caryn displayed her proclivity for rhyming as she stated, “I’m sour and dour.” She then added, “I’m very thin, but I want to win. I have lots of love, so Mazel Tov!” Anyway, the yacht-folk rejoined their team and even brought their relatives by, just to rub it in. I couldn’t help but notice how much Ian towered over Katie’s brother-in-law. Seriously, the guy only came up to Ian’s nipple. The camera man couldn’t get them in the same shot. Eventually, it came time for the visitors to leave, causing Gregg to bawl. Ha ha, he’s crying. Oh wait, his dad died a year ago and he’s still mourning. Okay, I’m a jerk.
Why is Ian ten feet tall now?
Well, the immunity challenge came around next, and it was sort of a mishmash of previous challenges throughout the season. Nothing remarkable happened here; so I’ll just skip to the results: Ian won. That of course meant that if the vote went to a tie, Tom would have a one in three chance of picking the rock. Gregg, however, was still oblivious that there would even be a rock scenario as he marched around camp, happily stating that Caryn would be going home. For her part, Caryn surely lived up to her word and moped around like the biggest sadsack in Survivor history. Everything seemed to be working just fine. That is until Ian told Gregg “It’ll be interesting to see the way it all plays out.” Interesting? Ian quickly covered, “You know, seeing how my first experience with deodorant will be. It’ll be interesting.” NICE SAVE.
“I really miss Jazzercise.”
After his little slip up, Ian found Katie and explained to her the situation. Either she goes along with the plan, or she’s going to put herself at risk. Well played, Ian. Meanwhile, technically, Katie could have simply gone to Caryn and said “We’re going to vote for Tom. Now you have to pull a stone instead. Or you can join us.” I’m sure that tactic would have been much more difficult to pull off, but hey, I’m just saying — Katie could have pulled a power move too, if she wanted.
Well, Tribal Council finally arrived, and we got to see our jury once again. Coby pranced in with a loud and proud rainbow shirt (all he was missing was a float), followed by Janu who for some reason looks amazing now, and finally Steph who broke my heart with a very unwise Jersey perm ‘do. As for our host, Jeff was persnickety yet again. I forget what the question was, but everyone giggled, causing Probst to snap, “You guys are laughing, but this is serious!” VERY SERIOUS! This is a reality show, dammit! How can you take it so lightly???
Anyway, Ian unsurprisingly refused to give up immunity (despite Tom reaching for the necklace), and thus it was time to vote. Would this lead to a rock-pulling tiebreaker? Amazingly no. Katie flipped her vote! And so with four votes cast his way, Gregg left the island, leaving a gaping-mouth Jenn behind. It was pretty shocking, I must admit. Even the jurry was atwitter with giggles and surprise.
So what will happen tonight? Will Jenn get her act together and regain a position of power? It shouldn’t be too hard: just rally Katie and Caryn together. I guess we’ll find out very soon…