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The seven remaining Survivors return to camp. None of them are even remotely surprised by the double quit (or whatever you call it) because they’ve known it was going to happen for days, of course. After they joke for a bit about naming the chicken “Kelly-Nay” because the quitters are chickens (GET IT?), it’s right back to the business of being boring.
“I put in all that effort to escape from Shambo, and then what? I end up on THIS shitty season. Great. Just great.”
Sash lets us know that he’s definitely the person who benefits the least from the Great Quit Off of 2010, since he now has no one to lead around. However, with Benry, Fabio and Dan on one side and Jane, Holly and Chase on the other, he knows that he’s now an important swing vote. By the way, how in the hell is Dan still around? I guess because he’s the least threatening alliance member possible. He’s totally getting fifth, you guys. Bet that shit.
The next morning, Sash tells the rest of the men (everyone but Holly and Jane) that he’ll be playing the idol this round. His logic is that having it puts a target on his back, so being on even ground with everyone else will let them all know that he’s a true free agent. “I’m going to be number four no matter where I go,” he says. Um, isn’t that a reason to KEEP the idol until the last possible moment and then use it to create a final three alliance? This season is the worst.
Chase takes Sash to the side, telling him that he wants them to work together. “It’s in our best interests to go with the women,” Chase says. Sash states the obvious: if they go to the end with Jane, they’re losing the game. Discussion turns to the upcoming reward, and they agree that the winner should take Holly. Chase tells Sash that if he wins and there’s a second spot, he’ll get it since he hasn’t won a food reward in a long time. Since these discussions only become plot points if they are broken, you can pretty much guess what’s about to happen.
“You do realize the laws of editing now require me to screw you, right?”
Reward Challenge. Today we’re going to get a second chance to revisit all of the largely shitty challenges from this largely shitty season. The first four people to crawl through a mud pit and then bounce a ball off a shield into a barrel move onto the second round. That round involves retrieving a key, and then (hey!) throw some beanbags onto (you guessed it) a barrel. The top two finishers move onto the final round. The first person to dig up three rings with a paddle and toss them onto some nails wins the reward, which is a trip to a resort, along with a hot meal and a shower. What, no movie this week? You guys couldn’t get Black Swan to pony up the dough for a ballet-themed challenge? Psh.
Chase, Jane, Benry and Holly move on from the first round. In the second round, Chase is the first one done and Benry is right behind him, so they’re in the final round together. Shockingly, Chase beats out Benry to win the reward,which we all knew was going to happen because he has to win it in order to leave Sash behind, of course.
And leave Sash behind is exactly what he does, predictably choosing Jane and Holly to go along with him. Oh, and he also offers Jeff Probst a hug.
“Yes, Chase. Always.”
Way to go Chase! Now Sash gets to return to camp with the entire opposing alliance. This fact has not escaped Sash, who takes the opportunity to ask Dan, Fabio and Benry what they’re thinking. “I know I’ll be the fourth man down the list with you guys,” he tells them. Dan fails to see what the problem is and gets weirdly confrontational about it, all ”and what’s the problem with that?” Sash points out that only two or three people get to actually go to the final. “ So what you’re saying is that you might side with them?” Dan responds, because he is an odd, odd man. “It’s difficult to trust Sash after what he did to Brenda,” Dan points out, “but I also have no other choices.” True that. Now go sit in your oversized throne.
Over at the reward spa, Chase and the ladies tour the hotel room where they’ll be staying. They marvel in the mirror over how much weight they’ve lost and how dirty they look. And then they find the outdoor shower, with sexy results!
I’m sure this is exactly what the producers were hoping for.
When it’s Jane’s turn to shower, Holly and Chase take the opportunity to discuss how dumb it was for him to bring her along. “I’ve been a little flighty throughout the game,” Chase says, in the understatement of the year. “I hope it doesn’t come back to bite me.” I hope it does.
At camp, the four guys decide that the time has come to kill the final chicken so that they can enjoy a meal too. When Jane returns from reward the next day, she’s completely batshit about it. She even makes a little grave for the chicken, complete with a tiny cross gravestone and a heart made of seashells. My notes say the following: ”Wow, that is some crazy shit.” I think that about covers it.
Holly brings Chase and Jane over to discuss how to get Sash to their side. “We have to make him think we’ll take him to the finals over Jane,” he says, “then we’ll drop him.” That’s kind of heartless, especially for Chase. I was expecting him to be all, “Let’s tell him we’ll buy him a bunny rabbit if he makes friends with us! Then, if he’s still not convinced, we’ll promise him eskimo kisses.”
Around the campfire, Benry tries to talk to Chase on the down low about potentially aligning. “I really don’t care who we vote out, as long as it’s not me. I’ll even vote out Fabio,” he tells Chase. That’s all the information we get; this episode is very weird. It’s a bunt of random little vignettes that have no context.
Chase apologizes to Sash for leaving him behind and going on the reward, and Sash blows right over it to talk about the game. Wow, what a captivating plot point that was! Lots of interesting stuff going on this season. Talk turns to a potential endgame alliance between the two of them. Sash would like Chase to swear on his parents (one of whom is dead, mind you), that he won’t vote for Sash at all for the rest of the game. Chase agrees to this. I’m not sure how much Chase’s word is worth when he just promised you a reward and then left you behind, but whatever.
“I’m totally not going to lie to you again. Back rub, anyone? Foot massage? Hug?”
Also, aren’t the more tempting final three partners really in the other alliance? Sash would beat the hell out of both Benry and Dan; all he’d have to do is take out Fabio at some point and the million dollars is his. On the other hand, Chase, Holly and Jane all have pretty strong arguments for the win, and some friends on the jury.
Holly walks up into the discussion (she’s kind of everywhere all of the time, isn’t she?) and they agree that Benry needs to go next; Chase tells them that he offered to vote out Fabio, so he’ll pretty much betray anybody. Benry notices that Sash is off in the woods with the other alliance and approaches to bust up their conversation. He tells Holly and Jane that he’s definitely down to vote off Fabio, he just needs to be kept in the loop. He’s clearly very desperate; it’s kind of gross, actually.
Immunity Challenge. Today the Survivors are going to be tethered to a rope that’s twisted around a post. The have to navigate the rope and unravel it; the idea is to unravel enough rope to grab a bag of puzzle pieces about twenty yards away. The first three people to retrieve their pieces move on to the final round and have to put together the puzzle, which is a weird three dimensional box kind of thing.
Fabio’s the first person to get his coins, and Benry and Sash are right behind him. As you might guess, Benry and Fabio are way, way out of their depth when it comes time to solve the puzzle, and Sash just sort of breezes by them and wins immunity for himself. This pretty much means he’s a lock for the final five, since next week is his last opportunity to use the idol.
“I have no idea what I’m even doing.”
After a commercial, Sash brags to us about being in control. Since he’s the exact opposite of “in control”, this comes off as more than a little grating. Plus, the dude has ONE tone of voice, and it’s not exactly intimidating, so maybe quit trying so hard. “I’ve been sandbagging at challenges and only giving about sixty or seventy percent,” he says, “and that’s why people like Benry and Fabio are in trouble and won’t get to the final.” And then Sash’s pants spontaneously combust, because he is a giant liar.
“Has anyone else noticed that Dan is still here?”
Holly, Chase and Sash decide that they’re going to vote out Benry, but make him (and Dan) think that they’re voting out Fabio. When Benry shows up to make sure that Fabio’s the plan, they tell him yes, but that they need to make Fabio think that they’re voting off Jane. Benry thinks Fabio won’t buy that; he wants to tell him they’re voting off Holly instead, since that’s a more likely scenario. You following so far? Actually voting off Benry, making Benry think it’s Fabio, making Fabio think it’s Holly. It’s fairly complicated, especially for these people.
“I think our four way alliance is going to stay strong to the end,” Jane tells us. Sash tells her that she’s “like a second mom” to him, and it comes off incredibly fakey and disingenuous, like pretty much everything Sash says, but of course Jane eats it up because she loves this kind of shit. “You can’t backstab your second mom, right?” he says. Gross.
Tribal Council. The jury enters, now with added quitter. “Chase, do you worry about being a physical threat?” Probst asks. Chase says yes, but also points out that he has yet to win individual immunity. Probst asks the same question to Fabio, who also says yes, and then Benry, who says the following: “Yes, I’m concerned about being a physical threat. Also, I am concerned.” Man, these people are so charming and captivating. And they have so much to say!
“Jane, is Fabio a target?” Probst asks. “Yeah, he is. He’s not the smartest on the puzzles, but he’s a definite physical threat.” The jury chuckles, as does Fabio, who to his credit has pretty good humor about it. Hey, at least the guy has some sort of self awareness. That’s more than we can say for most people on this show.
After Sash says some more bullshit about how he likes having immunity because it makes people talk to him, it’s already time to vote. What was that Tribal Council, three minutes long? We don’t see any of the votes, which hasn’t happened in a very long time. I’m guessing it’s because nobody said anything even remotely interesting when they cast them.
The first vote is for Holly; the second is for Fabio, who is visibly shaken when he sees it. There’s another for Fabio, but then the rest are for Benry and he’s out. This is a doubly nice move because Fabio’s allies voted for him, so now he’s pretty much on his own. Benry’s shocked to be blindsided; he mutters curse words to himself as his torch is snuffed.
Adios, dirt squirrel!
I’m guessing that if Fabio doesn’t win next week, that’ll be it for him, and then we’ll head into the finale with the least interesting Final Five ever. But hey, then this season will be over, so…there’s that, am I right?