Hi again! We’re going to kick off this week with a pop quiz. Raise your hand if you wanted to see the mulleted Denise nearly naked. No one? Not anyone? Well, then. You’re totally out of luck this week. That’s not even the main point of the action, but it’s what’s seared into my brain. And now it’s in yours. You’re welcome.
Last week the surgically endowed Ashley got the boot, thanks to her inability to get along with Lord Dave. Will the hapless Zhan Hu pull out a win, any win, this week? Or will Fei Long continue their reign of terror?
We begin at Fei Long on night 6, where we once again get a lesson in just how irritating Jean-Robert is. He snores, for one thing, and he tries to snuggle up to the girls. The night-cam, always handy for outing love amongst the unwashed survivors, shows the women of Fei Long actually leaping out of their sleeping hut to escape Jean-Robert. Courtney says that she and Amanda go to pains to avoid sleeping near Jean-Robert, but he seems to sense this and calls upon them to come “keep him warm.” Say it with me: “ew.” Courtney says the women are just grossed out. “I weigh seven pounds,” she says. “I can’t even keep myself warm.”
Leslie says Jean-Robert just doesn’t seem to get the social element of the game, and that the first chance Fei Long gets to go to tribal council, he’s gone. One of the women also says Jean-Robert wears a silk shirt and no underwear. Did I hear that right? Because ew, again. He’s nasty. I’m sure he told a camera at some point that “sexually harassing women” is just part of his “hate me now, love me later” poker strategy, but they didn’t even bother to show us.
The next day, James takes out Fei Long’s new fishing basket and manages to catch … one crab. The cameraman caught a shot of an enormous fish lurking in the shallows, but somehow James missed that and just got the crab. Back at camp a debate ensues about how the hell they can all eat one crab. Courtney wants to boil it into a “crab stock” to use to make rice. The men argue against this, and James seems to feel that because he caught it, he should get to actually eat some of it.
Leslie is frustrated with all the bickering, and says the men are all just cranky. Her husband, she says, gets cranky when he’s hungry and so she makes sure he gets fed, and she thinks that’s what’s wrong with the men – they’re hungry and cranky. Why does she sound like she’s talking about three-year-olds?
James says it’s hard to talk to the men on his tribe. He says before he came on Survivor, he went to Barnes and Noble and got a book on survival techniques. James says he isn’t an outdoor person, he does not eat outside, he doesn’t even drink out of solo cups, but that he feels like he has more knowledge of survival skills than the other guys. I find that kind of endearing – the brawny gravedigger reading a book on survival to make it in the wild. His muscles don’t hurt, either. Seriously, though, why DON’T these people practice up on some basic stuff before they come? That has frustrated me for years.
If You Want Something Done Right, Do It Yourself. If You Want To Make Allies, Shut Up, Dave
At Zhan Hu, the only thing different is that Ashley isn’t there. And by that, I mean Dave is still acting like only by working constantly can anything get done around camp. He keeps piling mud bricks on his fire pit, which I don’t understand – isn’t it finished? Does it need a constant supply of mud? I do not know. Peih Gee urges him to come eat, to keep up his strength and to learn to rest, but it just irritates Dave. He says she’s riding his butt, and that to win challenges you have to have the foundation of a stable camp life. “Camp doesn’t sort itself out,” he tells us, explaining his frustrations. “It’s not rocket science.” Yeah, well, the human body requires food and rest, Dave. That isn’t rocket science either.
At some later point, the others are cooking over the fire pit and debating whether a wok is properly balanced. Dave, who actually is resting, tries to tell them where to put a mud brick and then leaps up and fetches one himself, whining that in the time it took to talk about it, he could just do it. Wow, talk about not understanding the social element of the game. Frosti tells us Dave is irritating people, while Peih Gee claims they all have to look out for each other in order to win challenges as a tribe. Because that’s working out so well for them so far.
My Eyes, My Eyes!
It’s reward challenge time, and my eyeballs are involuntarily folding up on themselves just knowing what’s to come. The challenge will involve teams of three, wrestling each other off two boats. When all three members of one team have been pushed into the water, the other team gets a point. First tribe to three points wins pillows, blankets, lamps, rope and a tarp. Courtney and Todd, as the smallest, sit out.
The first grouping is the women. Denise makes the first move for Fei Long by trying to run over to the Zhan Hu side of the boat, but is quickly thrown into the water. Amanda goes in shortly afterwards, and then Leslie, and Zhan Hu scores.
The men are next, and inexplicably, and terrifyingly, Dave strips naked. Thank heaven for fuzzy blobs. (Smallish blob, though. Hmm.) Jeff, surprised, says Dave either now has an advantage, or is “very vulnerable.” I guess cotton shorts weren’t that much protection against a kick, but they would save him from the errant … pinch, or scratch. Just ow. What is he thinking?
At any rate, he could have put his pants on his head and done a Big Tom dance for all the good it does the men of Zhan Hu up against the likes of big guys like James and Jean-Robert. The Zhan Hu men get tossed in the water in short order.
So it’s the women’s turn again, and it’s getting ugly. The fuzzy blob is working overtime on Denise’s crotchal region -- *shudder* -- there’s a lot of wrestling, but Zhan Hu’s women win. Are we seeing a pattern here, that the Zhan Hu women are much tougher than their men? And I mostly mean Sherea, because Peih Gee isn’t a lot of help, bless her skinny little heart.
On the men’s next turn, Zhan Hu goes in the water faster than you can say “Oooh, James”. So the score is two and two. Women are back up. Denise has abandoned whatever wonderful shirt thingy she had on, and let’s just say it makes me sad. Get that woman a tan. Or bigger undies. I don’t know. Just get her something. This round is tough too, and Sherea loses a shoe while shoving Amanda into the water, but the Zhan Hu women pull it out again, winning Zhan Hu their first challenge. I’m glad to see they’re not going to be another one of those tribes, which seem to come along every other season, who can’t win a challenge to save their lives. Although they were coming close.
Zhan Hu decides to kidnap Leslie. Jeff gives her the scroll, like last week, and tells her to open it alone. Todd looks thoughtful. (In case you don’t remember: last week Jaime was kidnapped, got the scroll, gave the clue inside it to Leslie, who foolishly shared it with Todd.)
It Must Be the Water: Leslie Has Verbal Diarrhea
Back at camp, Jaime says she’s glad they chose to kidnap Leslie. Dave makes some strange promise to watch his mouth around Leslie, which I take to mean “he cusses, she’s Christian and offended.” Whatever. Leslie says she thinks Zhan Hu has good morale and that they seem like a happier tribe than her own, which makes me laugh. A, they’re happy because they just won, and B, did she mean “moral” instead of “morale”? Or has she just not heard Dave boss people around yet?
Everyone apparently goes swimming, and while splashing around the women ask Leslie if they are a happier tribe than hers. She says yes, and offers up all kinds of tidbits about how Aaron took over the leader role, and what everyone’s personality is like and who does what in the tribe, etc. They sure picked the right person to kidnap. Does the woman have no filter? She’s a nice woman, but geez. God to Leslie: these people are not your friends! Stop over-sharing!
Peih Gee chuckles that they got a lot of information out of Leslie, and that they did it in a subtle, girl-gossip kind of way. I assume she’s implying that ham-fisted Dave could never have gotten Leslie to open up like that. Probably not without a crowbar.
A Million Dollars and Two Asses
I missed just a minute or two here due to a ringing phone, and when I get back, we’re at Fei Long and Jean-Robert and James are paddling around in a pond, talking about everyone else. They joke about Leslie’s faith, and James says those that “pray the most, sin the most. That’s why they pray, they know they going to hell.”
But that’s not even the good part. They start talking about Courtney, and Jean Robert says Courtney should be the first to go. Problem? Courtney and Todd are in the trees doing … something, I don’t know, and they can hear every. Word. Todd wants to strangle Jean-Robert (for this, or on general principle, I’m not sure, but I’d like to see little Todd trying to leap high enough to grab Jean-Robert’s meaty throat). Oblivious, Jean-Robert and James carry on, apparently now talking about hooking up with the women. Or maybe just Courtney, I’m not clear on that. (Although I find it hard to believe these men would find Courtney and her bones sexually attractive.) What is clear is that Jean-Robert is a pig. “A million dollars is one thing, but a million dollars and some ass?” he laughs, promising to help James get whosever ass is in question. Oh, ugh. For one thing, before this scene, back when he was quiet and nice, James was about 100 times hotter than slimy Jean-Robert and shouldn’t need help. And for another, after this neither one of them would get romantic attention from a tree snake. Although that is indeed something I wouldn’t mind seeing.
Courtney is furious. She says she’s never sleeping near either one of them again. Todd is pretty angry too. He says in camp, you’ve got to take out the trash, and Jean-Robert and James are trash and he’ll get them out eventually. “Trash gets stinky. They’ve gotta go,” he says.
Leslie and Jaime Are Just Kickin’ It, Yo
Speaking of tree snakes, one is slithering over someone’s red bra drying on a branch. Ewwww. This is back at Zhan Hu, and Leslie finally goes off by herself to open her secret scroll. She finds the same sealed tube and the same message to give it to a member of the other tribe in private, and she knows what it is, since Jaime gave it to her last time. Naturally, Leslie wants to return the favor, because she says she and Jaime are on the same wavelength. “I’m picking up what she’s putting down,” she says, like a true middle-aged white woman who’s spent too much time trying to relate to teenagers.
Leslie and Jaime go off into the woods and Leslie hands over the tube. Jaime opens it to find a copy of the first clue – that the hidden immunity idol is somewhere visible – plus a second one, that it’s not on the ground. “I think it’s right in front of my face,” Jaime says. The camera pans to the little medallion thingy on the gate above the entrance to their camp. I would lay you money neither of these women are going to figure it out.
Small and Bony Loses the Race
It’s immunity challenge time, and Leslie returns to Fei Long. Jeff explains the challenge: each tribe will have four people assigned to chop through wooden beams and rope to release a stack of puzzle pieces. When they get four puzzle bundles, two other tribe members will stack them on a pole – they only fit one way. Then they’ll drag the pole, with a heavy stone on the end, over a finish line to win.
The key thing going on in this challenge is this:
SkeletorCourtney is utterly useless. She listlessly waves the machete at the wooden beam, while rolling her eyes, apologizing, and accomplishing absolutely nothing. Does she even HAVE muscles attached to those bony arms? It might have helped to use both arms. While she half-heartedly taps the wood, Zhan Hu gets all four of its puzzle bundles and starts putting their puzzle together. Eventually Courtney manages to saw apart the rope, thus allowing other people to get the other bundles, and Fei Long nearly catches up, but they lost too much time and Zhan Hu wins its first immunity challenge.
Back at camp, Skeletor inspects her various wounds, while the others reassure her that she tried her best and she didn’t give up. Jean-Robert, though, says the challenges have made it clear that they need strong people, and it’s time to get rid of the weakest women.
Leslie reports that Zhan Hu was a friendly tribe and that three of them are Christians. I’m not sure anyone asked her to find out their religious affiliation, and it might have been more helpful for her to report back on Zhan Hu’s power structure rather than which god they pray to, but to each her own. She also reports, innocently, that she told them about Fei Long and how Aaron is the leader. He says she just put his head in the guillotine. Leslie says she didn’t, that they already knew he was the leader because Jaime told them, but it’s too late. Privately, Aaron says Leslie is a liability, that she doesn’t think and that he can’t trust her.
Courtney says camp life is miserable and that Jean Robert and James have to go. She, Todd and Leslie agree that Jean-Robert should be the one. Todd goes to Amanda to get her on board. He tells her that because of Courtney’s utter failure at physical challenges, it would be good to have her around later in the game because she’d never win anything individually.
Aaron doesn’t want to vote out Jean-Robert, though, because he thinks they need to keep strong people for now and he’s worried about Leslie’s new bonds to people in the other tribe. He thinks she’s more dangerous. Todd says he doesn’t want to have to compete against the big guys later on. But, he says, the game is also about strategy and he wants to keep Jean-Robert now for challenges. Jean-Robert tells people that Courtney or Leslie are the weak women and one should go.
Sister Christian and the Chihuahua (Good name for a rock band? Discuss)
Let’s just let Jeff mediate this, shall we? He asks if Jean-Robert is concerned about the vote, and Jean-Robert says yes, but that he thinks the two weakest women should be in more trouble.
Courtney rolls her eyes at that. “This is fun to live with,” she says sarcastically. She’s almost crying little, bony tears, and says it’s hard to have every challenge require so much physicality and watch her tribe mates try to figure out where she’ll do the least damage. “I’m like a little Chihuahua trying to win a horse race,” she says.
Jean-Robert tries to say he didn’t suggest anything like that, but Jeff calls him on it, and so Jean-Robert reverts to claiming that he just tells things like they are. They’re not kids, he says, and they can’t worry about people getting their feelings hurt. “I’m keeping it real,” he claims.
Leslie says that Zhan Hu won because they have heart, and that Fei Long needs to get heart. Uh, no, I’d argue that Zhan Hu won because they didn’t have Skeletor waggling a machete around.
But I don’t have a vote. They do, and they cast them as thus: two for Jean-Robert, five for Leslie. Sister Christian, as one of them called her, is out. In her final statement to the camera, she says she’s proud of herself and that God was ready for her to go home.
Jeff says the lesson learned tonight is that the tribe needs to “have a little more fun” and to learn how to use each person’s unique strength.
Courtney and Jean-Robert fight at Fei Long, Sherea and Dave fight at Zhan Hu. Hopefully everyone will keep their clothes on.