We start with some lamenting from Matt on Redemption Island, which we can skip over because, who cares? He’ll just be back in four weeks to trust Rob again. We can file Matt right after “Lil” in “Reasons Eliminated Players Should Not Be Allowed to Reenter The Game.”
“I’m sure Rob wouldn’t betray me THREE times in a row, would he?”
Day 22 at Murlonio, where Zapatera is talking about the genius of Rob’s move. David compares Rob’s elimination to a mob hit, extending the Robfather thing even further. Julie talks about how cold-blooded it was to send Matt right back to RI, extending the reasons she probably won’t win even further.
Ralph makes the most bizarrely random strategic move ever, asking Ashley and Natalie if he’s next to go. Ashley and Natalie are like, “duh, we don’t make any decisions,” which is when Ralph reveals that he’ll vote for Ashley in the Final Three. He doesn’t say anything in his confessional about this being a strategic move, so we have to assume that Ralph has just decided that Ashley is playing the most masterful game of Survivor ever and she deserves a million dollars. Ralph, you just earned your self-proclaimed title of dumbass.
Not only is Rob better at Survivor than Russell, he also puts together a sexier harem.
Meanwhile, Rob puts the final nail in the coffin of building a full-on cult, telling Ometepe that from now on they make no decisions until just before Tribal Council and they have to stay with their buddies at all times. Oh MAN I wish I could have seen how Sandra and Courtney would have reacted to a proposed buddy system. My favorite part of this scene is definitely how Phillip is talking over Rob the whole time, clarifying useless shit about only talking to Zapatera about the weather.
So Rob talks more about keeping an us v. them mentality and how he wants his tribe to act like arrogant jerks so they lose jury votes and blah blah blah Rob is a really good player. Let’s move on and / or give him some real competition. Natalie pulls Rob aside and makes a really big deal about the aforementioned Ralph vowing to give Ashley the million.
“We should probably like, have sex or something to get back at her.”
Rob tells us that now Ashley will be gone before the Final Three because she has angered the Robfather. “This is my game,” he sneers. “I’m in charge.” VILLAIN. Not only is it weird that Ralph apparently did this non-strategically, it’s also weird that Rob seems to be falling for something that seems like such an obvious ploy to divide Ometepe. It ALSO also seems weird that this will never be mentioned again tonight, so we must be setting this up for aways down the road.
It’s a double elimination tonight, so challenge time. This happens:
Word, Julie’s face.
Jeff gets all mock-y and asks Phillip if he collided with a hawk (I wish Phillip had been sarcastic right back and been like, “yeah, Jeff. That’s exactly what happened.), to which Phillip tells a story about meditating and the feather appeared LITERALLY out of thin air. So, to quote Phillip, “it’s looking like a great day for the former Otempo tribe.” Have I said before how much I love Phillip?
Also, on a brief tangent, I feel like Phillip is basically a satire of what the Survivor game has become in the past ten years. He betrayed his first alliance for pure theatricality at Tribal Council, he has a random gimmicky job that he talks about all the time, and he openly mispronounces names of fellow contestants and stupid local words turned into tribe names. So if it turns out he’s actually doing genius social commentary, I would not be surprised. For now, I’m just going to keep enjoying him.
Today’s challenge is digging up clubs and smashing stuff, and then moving water with your mouth, and then a puzzle. Good Survivor stuff. Worth noting is Jeff’s near-orgasm when Rob smashes his tile and Julie’s surprising ineptness at spitting water into a tube. You know, for a fireman.
All of Jeff’s sexual fantasies probably involve shattering tiles, retrieving keys, and cubic puzzles.
The final round is Grant v. Mike v. David. And David fails at the puzzle. I’ll ask it again: Where the FUCK did we get the idea that he was the Puzzlemaster? He gets beat by fucking Grant, who is known for being muscle-y and letting Rob do his thinking for him. So good job Grant. Time to vote off the first Zapatera. And sitting at home on her sofa, Sarita is vindicated.
Man, she was so forgettable I can’t even think of a funny caption.
Mike says he was close and he’s upset he lost. When they get back, David and Mike think that the flagpole is in a different spot and start digging for another idol, which Rob then notices from halfway down the beach and then orders his clan to go after them. Hilarious here is how everyone just sort of meanders after Rob like a sheep, except Phillip who takes off sprinting.
Mike and David didn’t find anything but Rob gets the shovels out, so they start screwing with Rob and making casual comments about digging. Pretty funny, truth be told. Though I am upset you’re not trying to crack the Ometepes. Ashley and Natalie are dumber than Ralph’s rocks, but Rob has crazy paranoia and you should be able to do something with that.
Also, David calls the alliance The Mariano Crime Syndicate, and that will be it’s official name until Phillip officially christens them in twenty minutes as Stealth ‘R Us.
Phillip wants to vote for Ralph, but everyone is like, “shut up Phillip” and they have to decide between Mike and David. If only you could vote out both tonight! Then they literally take their buddy’s hands, and Ashley and Natalie say stuff about going to the bathroom that would make me laugh if I weren’t busying sending death threats to the CBS Casting Department.
Tribal Council #1! Jeff asks Phillip about knowing that his feather would bring luck to Grant, and Phillip tells us about his great-great grandfather the full-blooded Cherokee who also visited him in his meditation, and said that Ometepe will live long in Survivor lore. From now on, almost everything Phillip says will be presented verbatim because I just can’t summarize it and do it justice any longer.
Jeff tells Mike he’s in trouble. Thanks, Jeff. Julie and David tell everyone that Phillip is on the bottom of his alliance.
“I enjoy being on the bottom. It’s a nice place to be. You can look up and see what’s going on.“
Julie awesomely says something about how Matt probably felt the same way. Man, why is Julie such a badass? Ralph says that he might get a feather tomorrow too.
“It takes courage and determination and knowing when to hold your tongue to get a feather.“
Ralph keeps making fun of Phillip and Mike jumps in, saying he’s mostly insecure. Man, I didn’t think anything could outcrazy last season’s tribal councils, but this is coming close. Phillip’s defense?
You’re right, I’m just a guy who got a college degree, became a special agent working for three separate agencies. I served in the United States army and had the second-highest medal they give during peacetime.
David calls him a lunatic, and Phillip says David is at the bottom of a cesspool and he will be amazed when he says Steve sail away. I love love LOVE insane articulate people.
Finally we vote, and it’s five for Phillip and six for Mike. Bye Mike! Sorry you got burned by cult!
Jesus, we still have like half an hour left. Ok, so Rob tells Phillip that he’s actually his #2 guy, which really nicely addresses what I thought was the fatal flaw in Rob’s game. Rob is psyched that Phillip is back under his thumb and Phillip babbles on like a little kid / Coach about how good a job he did tonight. Rob says Natalie and Phillip in the Final Three is his gameplan.
Phillip talks about how he’s playing crazy a little bit so that Rob will take him to the end, so good for him. I would LOVE to see him win, let me just say that.
Ralph decides he wants to play Survivor and David says a bunch of stuff about they’re fucked and stand no chance. Oh, shut it, Puzzlemaster. Fortunately, Ralph decides to do something. Unfortunately, he does it by randomly shouting to Phillip and Andrea about playing individually and not letting Rob win. Why oh why would they jeopardize their cushy free ride, Ralph? You need to make them afraid! Tell them Rob wants them gone next! Phillip says he won’t talk about the game and basically Phillips his way through telling Ralph to leave them alone and go away.
It’s challenge time again, and today we’re doing the James Clement Memorial “you can either play or eat a mountain of food” thing.
Man, am I glad we don’t have to watch this guy any more. Until the next All-Star season, at least.
The only ones that choose to sit out are Phillip, because getting to choose food over immunity is one of the perks of being the token crazy person, and Steve, because he probably figured out he needs to make himself look as weak as possible to stick around longest.
Everyone else is doing an immunity thing hanging over a pool. Phillip does awesome cheering on of Ometepe members and heckling of David. After twenty minutes they have to hang on with their legs only, and finally we get down to just David and the Ometepe girlz. But then he falls, and Natalie and Ashley drop to let Andrea win. See ya David!
Back at camp, Ralph finds a bunch of fish in their net, but Rob says since they’re dead they can’t eat them. So what we get now is a tribal divide wherein the Zapateras eat the fish (which seems perfectly fine) and the Ometepes are so fucking conditioned that they obey Rob and don’t even eat the food, even though they’re starving. But Grant does wanders over and take a bite, which I’m hoping will turn out to be metaphoric.
Tribal Council #2! This is, verbatim, what Phillip says-
“For the first time in 22 seasons, there’s a highly effective, and beauteous and glorious operation on effect right now. It’s called STEALTH! [Phillip is] known as the Specialist. My principle responsibilities are to infiltrate and supplant inceptions into the former Zaparara tribe.”
And it just goes on and on. Rob develops strategies and alliances, Grant destroys aspirations, the girls are the Three Degrees. This.Is.Glorious.
Jeff keeps mocking Stealth ‘R Us and Ralph attacks Phillip for eating instead of playing today, and Phillip says his tribe understands. He also talks about their buddy system and says they can’t be destroyed.
Julie talks about how they’re a cult, which basically seals the deal that she will be next to go because she’s way more of a strategic threat than Steve or Ralph. Oh yeah, David is still technically here. He writes Rob’s name down four time on his vote and makes a joke about it counting four times, but alas and alack Killjoy Probst refuses to comply. Aaaaand David is gone.
Is there any hope that Andrea and Phillip will flip and vote out Rob and his cult? Or are we doomed to watch Natalie head to the finish line?