It’s Day 19 at the La Flor tribe. A flock of vultures devour what’s left of this season some sort of animal carcass. “There are people here who have no right to be in this game,” Marty says, “and I’m here with no Jill and no idol.” The “no Jill” part is what’s tragic, really. Who do I root for now? Benry?
“Uncle Fabio” (ugh) returns to camp with a treemail telling La Flor to pack up all their shit and head to their new home at Espada’s camp. Hey, an early merge this season! I’ve always wondered why they don’t merge the tribes earlier. The worst part of the season is during the doldrums of later tribe play, when the alliances are already determined and the players in the minority are being picked off.
Meanwhile, Espada discovers a chest at their treemail post, and with it a note telling them to wait for their new guests to show up with the key. Before La Flor shows up, Alina sits the Espada tribe down and proposes that they stick together; she thinks they can get to the Final Six if they stay strong. Of course, pretty much everyone else has got their own side deal working, so Alina’s left out to dry. By the way, the other five Espada members? Not too good at hiding their disdain.
“Yeah, we’re totally in.”
La Flor shows up at Espada’s camp; hugs ensue. Espada, especially Alina, is suitably surprised that Jill has been voted out, since they all thought that Marty and Jill were running the show over at La Flor. Alina does not mention anything about joining forces with Marty, although she totally should. The newly merged tribe opens their chest, which contains a feast (of course), new red buffs (duh), and a giant, pirate-sized jug of rum (yay!). Holly cries the whole time, because: crazy.
I feel you, Benry: it’s the only way to get through an episode.
Before people can even put on their buffs, Marty announces that he has a tribe name in mind. He wants to call the merged tribe “Libertad”, which means freedom in Spanish and/or Portuguese. Everyone else is cool with it, probably because they were all, “Well, I was thinking of the word ‘Nicaragua’ backwards.”
The tribe dines on their new bounty, which includes bread, fruit, cookies, candy, and a variety of tasty meats and cheeses. “The salami was really good, like my booty,” Na Onka says, and then the editors may or may not have inserted a fart noise. ”I even snuck some nuts and put them in my bra! I might have some in my pocket right now!” she says, pulling one out of her pants, popping it into her mouth and laughing.
You’re plenty nuts yourself, I wouldn’t worry about stealing any extra.
Brenda tells us how excited she was to see Na Onka again (?). They settle right back into the way things were, taking a walk together to catch each other up on what’s happened the past nine days. “Alina has been shady,” Na Onka says inexplicably. If she’s been shady, I haven’t seen it. Plus, crazy Na Onka is throwing shady stones at shady glass houses. Brenda tells Na Onka how Sash convinced Marty to give him the idol, and Na Onka is absolutely ecstatic over it. Now that their alliance possesses both idols, it would take a huge, huge mistake to keep Brenda, Sash and Na Onka (probably) out of the final three. Their plan is to get Alina and Marty out first, then pick everyone else off until the audience falls asleep and then switches over to Modern Family.
After a commercial, we’re hanging out with Chase and Jane, who have been on opposite tribes the whole time and haven’t gotten a chance to really talk. Of course,they love each other since they’re both from The South and both have chickens and both have horses and both enjoy grits and both enjoy NASCAR and both sew homemade quilts and both buy a lot of furniture from Cracker Barrel. They’re about two seconds away from making out, seriously. Someone get those crazy kids a room.
“Let’s do this, Corky.”
That morning, Na Onka makes breakfast for everyone. Since Na Onka is incapable of doing anything nice, you know some shit is about to go down. She gets upset because the other tribemates are actually eating the food she’s cooking. I know! The gall! So she gets all high and mighty because they’re not waiting for her to eat, and sets about stealing the flour she just used to cook everyone tortillas. Holly sees Na Onka march off with the flour pot and bury it, because her paisley ass sees everything.
Oh, and then! Na Onka’s alone at camp and steals even more shit, taking the pots and pans, the utensils, pretty much anything she can get her hands on. She starts burying stuff all over the jungle like a damn squirrel. It is amazing.
Chip and Dale and Na Onka
Alina happens to choose this time to consult Na Onka about the Espada alliance she proposed that is totally not happening. Na Onka breaks the news to Alina that there’s no chance in hell that she’s staying unless she wins immunity; she softens this blow by sharing all of her stolen food with Alina, who giggles at Na Onka’s audacity while she chows down on an orange.
“I CANNOT believe you grabbed all this stuff,” Alina says over and over again. “Hey, I’m having fun, you gotta have fun,” Na Onka replies. How is stealing communal property fun? Whatever, not judging. Na Onka tells us in confessional that she told Alina that everyone’s been lying to her so she can eventually get her vote on the jury.
Oh my god, I just had an epiphany. How totally awesome would it be if Na Onka won this season? This whole cast is so objectionable that a Na Onka win would be a perfect, poetic ending to this terrible, boring airball of a season. That’s it, I’m starting an internet campaign right now. Follow me on Twitter! @naonkaftw, yall!
Pretty soon the rest of the tribe is up in arms over all the missing shit, because you can’t steal all the pots and pans without having someone notice eventually. By the way, this is all Russell’s fault. When the group raises a stink and demands to know who did it, Alina sits by quietly while Na Onka pretends nothing’s wrong. Of course, Alina should out her and try to get her ousted since she has nothing to lose, but instead she sits there, saying nothing and becoming guilty by association.
Holly finally speaks up and outs Na Onka for stealing the flour. “I saw Na Onka walk off with the flour in her bag,” Holly tells the group. When everyone starts asking Na Onka why she had the flour in her bag in the first place, Na Onka gets all defensive, stuttering repeatedly as she tells everyone that she was trying to ration the flour out. When she finally gets cornered by suddenly awesome Fabio (“WHY DID IT GO IN YOUR BAG IN THE FIRST PLACE?”) she stomps off into the jungle, just as she has in every other episode since the premiere.
“You are so crazy that you activated my one brain cell for a brief moment.”
Chase and Alina go off into the forest to locate Na Onka. “Everyone knows it’s you, you may as well just say it,” he tells her. “I don’t want to let them know I lied!” Na Onka says, and Chase is all “Wait, you lied in Survivor?” and Na Onka is like “Good point,” and stomps back to camp with her head down to fess up. Na Onka admits to lying to the group and confesses that she stole all the stuff, and in the process she places some of the blame on Alina for being there as it all was going down. Alina earns just as much scorn from the group as Na Onka does, because she knew and didn’t snitch, I guess.
Na Onka continues to put forth the theory that she stole the stuff so that she could ration it out (because pots and pans can only be used once?) and Marty wisely calls bullshit on this theory. “I mean, she stole stuff! You’d think that she would be instantly gone,” he tells us. Not in this, the Season of Crazy, where stupidity is rewarded and gameplay is punished. You’re going to have to out-crazy her if you want to stay in the game, Marty. Light something on fire! Punch a camera guy! Then the final three will be yours, man.
“Thanks for apologizing. Now, back to being dumb.”
Sash, Chase and Brenda debrief each other after The Na Onka Incident (title of my next album), deciding to distance themselves from Na Onka but continue to protect her, as she would be an excellent final three partner. Yessssss, YES, take her to the final three so she can weirdly beat all of you. This is happening, people. Get on the Na Onka train before it gets full.
Meanwhile, Jane returns to camp with a fish in her clutches. It is apparently her fifth or sixth fish of the day. “Fish dance!” she says, shimmying around like, well, an old lady.
“I used to do this move at the barn dance in Durham in 1954.”
“Fish dance, kiss my ass,” Marty mutters jealously from the tent. He’s upset that Jane’s in so good with the group when she’s played such a terrible strategic game (not really true), and sets his sights on getting rid of her. He even takes Brenda to the side to tell her not to fall for Jane’s “sob story”, which is something about how poor she is now that her husband has died. We haven’t heard a lot of it, frankly, and I’m quite okay with that.
Immunity Challenge! Probst reveals the individual immunity necklaces to oohs and aahs. Today’s challenge will be one of indurance: each contestant will use two metal handles to keep tension on a metal bar. If the tension lets up even a bit, the bar will drop and break a tile. The last man and the last woman standing will each win immunity.
Purple Kelly is out immediately, then Dan, duh. Alina is out next, and is mighty pissed about it. Pretty soon it’s just Jane/Holly for the women and Marty/Fabio/Chase for the men. Holly’s bar drops (who knew she would be so good at challenges, by the way?) and Jane wins immunity for the women. Probst tells her that she can drop her bar. “What if I wanna beat them?” she replies, nodding toward the men.
She stays in the competition as Marty drops his bar, leaving Fabio and Chase to duke it out. Chase tries to adjust his bar and it costs him immunity when it falls, leaving Fabio as the individual immunity winner for the men. Jane refuses to drop her bar until Fabio drops his so that she can be the last one.
I know that we are supposed to find Jane’s gumption and spunkiness charming, but I do not. I guess it’s because she also seems sort of vindictive and motivated by a scary sort of anger. I mean, I’m not on Team Marty or anything, but Jane just sort of seems like an old lady who’s all set in her ways and sees anyone who’s different from her as an enemy. But whatever, I’m not really down to dive into the psychology of Jane’s brain right now, so let’s move on, shall we?
Back at camp, Jane admits to the rest of the girls that she only wanted to beat Marty, and then demands that he be sent home. She has a very, very real fury in her eyes when she tells us just how much she dislikes him.
She’s what comes out of the mirror when you say Bloody Mary.
Purple Kelly (wha?) wants to get the women and Sash together to vote out Marty. Alina is perfectly okay with this, of course, since it means that she gets to lay low and avoid the axe for another three days.
In the shelter, Dan asks Chase who’s on the chopping block, and he tells Dan that it’s either Alina or Marty. Not wise, bro Dan takes this information to Marty, framing it as if Chase is the one who wants to “blindside” Marty. It’s not a blindside if the person thinks they’re already going home, Dan. Either way, Marty gets all up in arms over this, seeking out Sash and Brenda to beg for his life. “I don’t understand why people are coming after me! I’m no threat, I have no allies, it’s a waste of energy.” That’s a good point, save for the fact that you’ve spent the last twenty days painting yourself as a powerhouse, and now it’s kind of too late to go back on that concept.
And still your hair stays like that.
Afterwards, Sash approaches the rest of his giant alliance to ask them for “a huge favor”: he promised Marty he’d give back the idol on the next go-round if he needed it, so he needs to keep Marty safe for just one more Tribal Council. Jane really, really does not want to do this. “What if he wins individual immunity the next three times?” she says. “Well, we have eight more times,” Brenda responds, and of course Jane has no real recourse. She still refuses to vote for Alina; she’s putting Marty’s name down anyway.
Meanwhile, Marty starts to scramble. He corners Holly and demands her “South Dakota Word of Honor” that she’ll vote for Alina. As in, she promises that she won’t vote for him, and then he makes her say those words. On the other end of camp, Alina and Jane have different plans: they want to get rid of Marty without the help of Sash. This plan requires Fabio’s vote, so Alina goes to ask Fabio to vote with them. He doesn’t want to vote for Marty, he wants to vote for Na Onka (NO!). Alina tells him that’s fine, since a random vote will mean that their six will be enough to get rid of him. He’s all “That’s why everyone wants you out! You always have a hidden motive.” Her reply is pretty great: “How is this hidden? I just don’t want to go home.” Since she’s right, Fabio just stands there dumbfounded with nothing to say. Yep, think that about covers it.
“I’m tired from all this thinking.”
Tribal Council! Let’s ice one of these fools, for real. Probst asks Marty about “making big moves”, and Marty completely ignores the question, instead offering to “clear the air” and triggering a long series of eye rolls in my living room. “Everyone thinks that I don’t like Jane, but that’s not the case. Miss Jane began a series of bad mistakes and aligned herself with weak players.”
Jane is not having any of this. “Whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa [Miss Lippy]!” she replies. “I tried to align myself with you and y’all fluffed me off!” Marty says this is because you don’t create alliances in the first thirty minutes of the game. “If she gets to the end, she’ll take the million dollars, she needs the money and you can’t write a better story than she has. If she gets to the Final Three, I WILL VOTE FOR HER,” he says. He’s clearly scrambling, and also doing himself no good at all.
“Step One: Steal Underpants.”
Probst, always the impartial judge, goes to Alina for a ruling. ”Do you think Marty could have hurt himself with that speech?” he asks. Alina’s answer: of course. You heard it here first, y’all.
At this point, Dan actually raises his hand and tells Probst that someone on the tribe stole food, pointing the finger at Alina and Na Onka. Na Onka actually stands up for Alina, telling Jeff that she acted alone and that Alina didn’t do anything (but make herself culpable through association, of course). “You wouldn’t have given it back if we hadn’t found out,” Fabio says. “I already got punished, Jeff,” Na Onka says, and when he wants to know how, she tells him that no one talked to her. The entire world rolls its eyes.
Time to vote. Jane votes for Marty, duh. Alina also votes for Marty. Benry votes for Alina, then calls her a “100 percent, grade A dirt squirrel”. Sash votes for Alina too. When the votes are read, the first two votes are for Marty, and then the rest are for Alina and she’s done, and also the first member of the jury.
I mean, we all knew how this was going down, right? Alina was actually trying to play the game instead of being crazy and stupid, and thus her ass was doomed. On any other season she probably would have done much better, but everyone this year is either super crazy or super boring. This whole season feels very much like Junior Varsity Survivor.
But anyway, I need to know how many “Team Na Onka” shirts to order and how many of each size to get, so if you guys could leave that info in the comments, I’d really appreciate it. Thanks!