I’m rusty and out of practice when it comes to viewing the game post-merge and I was completely unprepared for how crazy this episode got. Right from jump I was shaking my head as Michele vented to Nick about how angry she was about being blindsided by Wendell’s snuff. I couldn’t help but laugh when she called them all bumbling, stumbling idiots. Wouldn’t the person who doesn’t know what’s going on be the actual idiot? Nick is fuming too and throws a tantrum about his name being written down. He boasts that he’s out for revenge. No exaggeration: I was more intimidated by my 5 foot zero inch Norwegian grandmother than any of them should be of Nick.
On EOE they’re all given scrolls with a clue to some item of value. They break off in teams to search and Natalie is all for leaving Yul and Wendell out in the cold because they’ve had the benefit of eating recently. Danni shocked me by being the one to decipher the mystery, which led to her search buddy Parvati finding the “Safe/Unsafe” coin flip advantage. They decide Michelle would be the best one to sell it to since she has the most tokens, and they can set any price they want. I was surprised that they decided to share the find with the rest of the group. It seems like individual games are out the window on EOE, and I’m not sure that’s wise. We shall see.
The reward challenge offers up a chance for Chinese takeout. They split up into two groups of five by schoolyard pick and Denise is odd-woman out and has no chance at reward. Jeff’s comment, “War is not pretty.” I’m sure Denise found great solace in that sentiment while her stomach rumbled. It came down yet again to who could complete the puzzle faster, and Sophie and Sarah succeeded. Sarah surprises everyone by giving her reward to Nick for his birthday, and immediately has a target on her back. No good deed goes unpunished, especially in this game.
The winners dig in to their takeout and Nick doesn’t feel beholden to Sarah at all. Thankless jerk. I keep hearing what a nice guy he was during his last season, but I’m not seeing it. They all open their fortune cookies thinking there might be a clue to an idol. No such luck, but Michelle did use them as omens to convince her to buy the 50/50 coin from the EOE residents and spend all of her tokens on it. It can be played up to the point where seven people are left.
The immunity challenge is another endurance test. This one is on a triangular platform with miniscule footholds on the sides. The first level lasts for five minutes, the second lasts for 10 and the third is winner takes all. In round one both Michele and Denise are eliminated. The round two casualties are Tyson, Jeremy, and Tony. Adam doesn’t make it upright in time for round 3, so he’s out, followed by Sophie, Nick, and Sarah. It came down to Kim and Ben with his weird tai chi moves. Obviously he didn’t study under Mr. Miyagi or Pai Mei, and he falls like a chainsawed tree. Kim is safe an earns immunity and a fire token.
Back at camp things devolve into sheer chaos. So many names are bandied about for the snuff that it’s easier to share whose names didn’t come up. The only ones not mentioned were: Kim (immune), Jeremy, Denise, and Tony. What that says about their safety in the near future is yet to be determined though. There is definitely an every man/woman saving their own hides feel that I wasn’t expected after the fairly unified ousting of Wendell last week. Allies are questioning each other. Targets change in seconds, and it continues on straight through to tribal.
Jeff barely gets out the first question at tribal before the whispering begins. It’s not just a quick mouthing of a name or leaning over to check with the person next to you either. People are getting up, moving around, all while Ben and Adam are in full blown Bickerson mode. It was craziness! By the end everyone is mum and it looks like Adam is the only one not receiving direct eye contact. Jeff calls for the vote and everyone dutifully complies.
Just when you think the last bit of nuttiness has been wrung out of the episode, Adam pops up when Jeff calls for immunity idols to be played and rushes over to the podium. Shocked looks abound on the benches as they wonder if Adam somehow found one. Instead Adam grabs at the fleur-de-lis emblem and starts shaking it, trying to get it to come loose. When he sees that it’s nailed down, he sheepishly heads back to his seat saying it was worth a try. God love Jeff for stringing it along further and making Adam think there might be a chance that it was the first time an idol had been placed in plain sight at tribal. Adam, ever hopeful asks to play it and Jeff immediately dashes them by telling him it’s just part of the podium. The votes are read and Adam is out, but he certainly gave us enough comedy to tide us over until next week!