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This week, on Survivor: Shambo really, seriously believes that she is an instrument of God. She’s like Tim Tebow, but with less crying! Okay, with more crying.Shambo celebrates her victory after the Laura boot. “Medusa has been dethroned. Isn’t that just hysterical?” Shambo says, forgetting that she also kind of sucks a lot. In fact, Shambo has more in common with Medusa than Laura does. What are you willing to wager that there are one or two snakes living in that mullet?
John defends his decision to flip and send Laura home, telling us that he’s not about to go home by drawing rocks. I’m pretty sure drawing rocks was the right move for him, because even though it puts him in (very little) immediate short term danger, it gives him the better shot at getting his team to the end, which is what he needs if he’s going to get any votes at all. Flipping only produces feelings of disloyalty, and only gets him one place further instead of (potentially) many places further. It’s a short term risk for long term gain, as it were.
Anyway, John has decided that his best strategic route is to trust Russell (ha!), thinking that Russ will live up to his promise to get rid of a Foa Foa at the next Tribal Council. Hey, I wonder how that will turn out for him?
On the morning of Day 28, Shambo and Russell go to check the treemail and find packets of money for everyone, which they know means that it’s time for the perennial Survivor auction. Shambo adds yet another reason for me to dislike her by telling us how hungry she is by using the word “literally” and pronouncing it “litrally”, as if she is a history teacher at a snooty liberal arts university. Oh, shove it up your canvas elbow patches, Professor Training Bra.
Reward Challenge! Er…Reward Auction! This year there is no pooling of money or sharing of food. The first item is a giant PB&J sandwich, which Natalie wins for 200 dollars. The next item is covered, and different people bid before Shambo ends up winning it for 240 dollars. Her prize? A giant bowl of sea slug guts (you may remember them from the gross smoothie competition), sprinkled with a little parmesan cheese. She tries not to look too embarrassed by taking a giant bite of them, but it is a giant fail on her part, and I took great pleasure in it. This week is all about crazy Shambo, by the way, and I will say this: I much prefer The Russell Show to The Shambo Show. The Shambo Show is worse than Jay Leno.
The next item is also covered, and a bidding war ensues, since people figure that Probst won’t put two terrible items in a row. Dave ends up winning it for 300 dollars, and it ends up being an entire roasted chicken, which is a pretty sweet prize. The next item is not food, but an advantage at the next immunity challenge. John and Jaison both want it, and once the bidding goes to 300 dollars, Jaison asks what happens if they both bid 500. When Probst replies that the first person to 500 wins the advantage, Jaison straight up bids all his money and takes the advantage for himself, which is the smartest thing the guy has done yet. Well, besides get rid of Racist Ben.
Jaison feels the pain of his decision immediately when Probst uncovers an absolutely giant hamburger and beer, which Mick immediately bids 500 on and takes. Jaison looks miserable and admits that he is having “second, third and fourth” decisions about taking the advantage. That burger does look mighty tasty. Next up is a clue to the hidden immunity idol, and Russell doesn’t even make a cursory attempt to bid on it, which should be a HUGE giveaway to anyone who’s paying any attention at all. John ends up winning the useless clue for 200 dollars. The next item is a shower, which goes to Natalie again for 120, and we get some cheesy porno music as we see her take the least sexy shower ever. Well, unless you have an ankle fetish, in which case this sequence is your 9 Â½ Weeks3m>.
The last item is a big slice of apple pie, which goes to John for his remaining 300 dollars. Before he digs in, however, Probst offers him a deal: he can take the one slice for himself, or he can give an entire pie away to four other people. He thinks for a minute before deciding to keep the slice for himself. “I’m pretty confident no one is going to vote me off because I wouldn’t give them any pie,” he says. He’s probably right: I mean, if he could give everyone pie that’s one thing, but making him pick four people and exclude others is only going to make things more difficult for him than they are.
With that, the immunity challenge is over, and everyone is sent back to camp with bellies full of hamburger and/or fish guts. John decides to look for the idol with his clue immediately. The clue pretty much tells him exactly where the idol is; it doesn’t even rhyme, it’s just like “Look by the mossy rock wall near the bottom”. I love how the producers have given up any pretense of making the idol thing a mystery at all. The Survivor Immunity Idol now poses a mental challenge equivalent to an episode of Blue’s Clues.
John looks for a while, including right in the spot where the idol used to, before declaring that Russell has probably already found it. John may lack some common sense, but he’s certainly not stupid.
Meanwhile, it has been decided that the time has come for the chickens to go to the great Chick-Fil-A in the sky. Shambo sulks over to the cage to say a melodramatic goodbye for the camera. “Bye bye chickens, I’ll see you in heaven when I get to heaven, okay?” Shambo thinks that chickens go to the same heaven that we do, you guys. This explains why depictions of the Grim Reaper in chicken folk tales always look a lot like Colonel Sanders.
“Those chickens were my single source of happiness over my last month here on the island,” Shambo says on the verge of tears. What about Laura’s demise, eh? I guess schadenfreude doesn’t count as happiness. “We’d have conversations, you know? I’d tell them to lay some eggs so they don’t get killed, and they’d understand.” Well, when you put it that way, you don’t sound so crazy. Only vaguely sociopathic.
Mick holds one of the chickens down while Russell kills she shit out of it. After more theatrics, Shambo decides that she’s going to be the one that cooks the chickens, because when something you love dies, you should always be the person to turn that loved one into a tasty meal.
The rest of the tribe wants to skewer the chickens and roast them, but Shambo has unilaterally decided that she’s going to make chicken soup, and that no one else’s input is even remotely important. If you’re wondering whether Shambo has been playing the Poor, Poor Me, I’m So Alienated card when she is, in fact, committed to forcible separating herself from the group, I submit to you this moment, right here.
Dave, for one, is not having any of this nonsense from Shambo. “I won those chickens, and I get a say in what happens to them, and if you boil a chicken for two hours, it’s gonna be ruined.” Shambo wants to slow cook something she loves for two hours, you guys. As we all know, the best way to memorialize something you treasure is to drop that shit right into a Crock Pot. She continues to act like a total bitch, telling Dave to shove it. I think the power may have gone to her head a little, you guys.
Later that night (there is no mention of whether the meal worked out or not, strangely), Shambo sleeps soundly….OR IS SHE? Lightning strikes. The ghost of a chicken flits across the screen. I think the Blair Witch is in there, somewhere. “I have dreams sometimes,” Shambo says. “I think it’s God’s Divine Intervention. I’ve had probably thirty of them in my lifetime. And I dreamed that we voted Dave off!” she says, with portent. Oh my god, Shambo had a dream in which she voted off Dave, right after he got into a shouting match with her? That’s totally not her subconscious trying to make her feel better. OMG, she’s JESUS, you guys. I am totally in awe of her. Touch my head and heal my leprosy, Shambo!
Russell laughs at the ridiculousness in a talking head; “Sooo….Shambo had a dream that we voted for Dave, and we’re going to do that, because that’s what Shambo wants!” he laughs uproariously. “And once he’s gone, we can just run it through to the end,” he says, barely able to contain himself. It’s like he can’t believe his luck. This version of Russell? I sort of like.
Immunity Challenge. Today’s competition is endurance; everyone will grab onto a rope tied with knots at equal intervals. Each rope is attached to a giant log; every few minutes, you have to move your hand lower on the rope by one knot, making it the weight of the log more difficult to bear; the last person holding their log wins. Jaison’s advantage is that he can move his hand up by two notches whenever he likes.
Once the challenge begins, Jaison uses his ability as soon as he can, which is the wisest way to do it; he’ll feel the weight of the log much later than the rest of these people will. Shambo is out first, falling dramatically backwards, because this she is the first mulleted drama queen in the history of ever. Russell is surprisingly out right after, and pretty soon it’s down to just Jaison, Dave and Natalie, who is holding her own pretty damn well. I’d say it’s surprising, but she’s been pretty badass for awhile now.
Natalie eventually falls, leaving just Dave and Jaison, whose hold on the rope is much higher thanks to his advantage. Dave can’t bear it any longer and loses hold of his rope, meaning that Jaison’s auction money has bought him immunity.
“Foa Foa will do whatever I want,” Shambo says nonchalantly, “And I want to vote off Dave.” Oh, Shambo. Your hubris gives me sustenance.
Back at camp, John pulls Russell aside to make sure he’s going to keep his promise to vote off a Foa Foa member (ha!). Russ is like “Yeah, totally, we’re thinking Mick. Now, can you turn around and bend over, please?”
John says that if they (I guess meaning Foa Foa?) sees it coming and votes for one of them, they can play the idol, because Russell has it. Russ, taken aback that someone is actually as smart as he is, has no defense to this straightforward approach and basically cops to having it. If you pause the TV at exactly the right time, you can literally see him thinking the following:
So now John has seriously screwed up, because he 1)trust Russell, for some reason, and 2)has turned himself into a target by outsmarting him. So Russ knows what he has to do: get rid of John. “I made a mistake, so now John has to go home,” Russell says, finally admitting that he is, perhaps, not infallible. Hmm. Am I beginning to like Russell? What is going on here? I’M CONFUSED AND SCARED. Oh well. Off to take a Silkwood shower!
Russell now has to get around the Shambo issue, which he has decided to resolve by removing her from the equation entirely. Russell goes right to Dave, telling him that it was he was going home, but Russell would like it to be John. As such, Dave will have to vote for John if he’d like to stay. Dave is more than cool with that, given that John just screwed him over by flipping his vote for Laura. “If it’s not John, it’s gonna be YOU.” Russell says, straight up. Jesus, am I starting to respect him? WHAT IS HAPPENING?
When Mick tells Jaison about the plan to get rid of John by circumventing Shambo entirely, Jaison rightly points out that the next round is going to be a 4-4 tie when she gets pissed off. “We’re doing the same thing to her that they did,” Jaison says. He is correct about that. The least they could do is tell her, you know? I don’t think she would freak out THAT badly, especially if they promised to get rid of Dave next round.
Tribal Council. Probst offers cursory congratulations to Jaison for using his advantage properly before moving on to The Crazy Show. “Shambo, is it easier or more difficult to get along with people after this long?” he says to her. She says that today was “very peaceful”, and Russell is randomly like “Um, today was strategic, yo.” When she looks at him shockingly, Probst is like “Are you seriously surprised that people are strategizing?”
And this is when Shambo truly begins to unleash her crazy: “It’s absolutely IMPERATIVE to me that someone who deserves it wins,” she says, because Shambo, she of impeccable morals, gets to decide who is good and who is bad. She’s like Sugar with worse hair and makeup, which I didn’t even know was possible. Pay no attention to her petty actions, or the inconsiderate, unilateral decisions she has made, for she is Hair Band Jesus, and she is here to sort the holy from the unholy! Woe is he who steps into her path!
Probst asks Mick if he feels safe, and Mick points out that everyone has brought their bags to this Tribal Council, because things are always up for grabs. I love when contestants on this show insinuate that the presence of bags is evidence that they’re worried about elimination. When you’ve been eliminated, I’m sure the first thing you think is “Shit, I can’t believe I didn’t get to bring that shirt that I’ve been wearing for a month straight with me! Fuck, and also left that rock I found that’s sort of shaped like the state of Wisconsin!”
Time to vote. Russell elects not to play his idol. The first vote is for Mick (John’s) and the next is for Dave (Shambo’s). The rest? Are for John, and he is donezo. This means that both Monica and Brett voted for John as well, in case you were wondering if they were harboring any ill will from that Laura vote. Peace, rocket scientist!
Next week: a double elimination, when we will undoubtedly see Brett get knocked out, because I barely know his name.