Its all about the merge baby.
Sook Jai is returning from tribal council and crying about voting Robb out. Wah Wah Wah - if you are so upset, why did you vote him out ten minutes ago. You should have voted out Shii Ann - Robb LOVED you guys.
The next day tree mail comes with 5 different colors of paint. Everyone chooses a color and paints their body. Ted looked like an Oscar statue all painted in gold. Helen looked like a purple scary clown. They get to the challenge beach and pair up with the opposing teams member with the same color paint. Three pairs get to sit down, have a picnic, and get to know each other. Ken & Helen go to the Sook Jai camp, Clay & Shii Ann go to the Chuay Gahn camp.
Ken starts to interrogate Helen, but she puts on her best Navy Seal face and refuses to give anything but name rank & serial number. The two of them looked a bit like wrestlers, each looking for an opening, and finding none.
Clay is having much more luck with Shii Ann. It takes her about 2 minutes to start spilling her guts. She hates her tribe. They hate her. Penny & Erin are plotting and planning. The Sook Jai's are going to pagong the Chuay Gahn's. She won't shut up. Clay was thinking "I wonder if I cooked her - would she taste like a hamburger?"
They get back to the challenge beach, and Jeff announces that something very different is about to happen. The tribes are about to live on one beach. I am not sure how different this is from previous series, because the tribes have always merged at this point. I wonder if the contestants get tired of Jeff telling everyone how different the same old reconstituted challenges are. Ken, Helen, Clay & Shii Ann make the decision to locate the merged tribe at the Chuay Gahn beach. They even rename the tribe to Chuay Jai (or was it Sook Gahn). No matter.
Back at the cave - there is enough wine & crackers for an evening of stupidity - and we were not disappointed. First of all, Jan gets stinking drunk and practically falls into the fire. Seeing Jan on her back with her legs in the air is not a pretty sight, and those of you who don't watch the show should consider yourselves lucky tonight. Then Brian grabs a bottle & his guitar and serenades everyone by singing out of tune songs with incoherent lyrics. Sounded a little like Bob Dylan for a moment or two. Brian staggers away to go vomit on the rocks and Ted follows him to make sure he does not fall in the ocean or anything. Ted is a true friend.
The next day Brian & Jan are sporting hangovers. Shii Ann continues to work the Chuay Gahn's by bonding with Ted and crying the "culturally different" blues. Good for you Shii Ann. Plotting and planning in this game is essential, and selling your tribe down the river is a bold move. Ken confronts her, and she gets all wishy washy.
The next day they receive a padlock in the treemail denoting the next "all new" challenge (padlocks, chains & keys was used as an immunity challenge in Australia). They get to the challenge beach and everyone talks about how enjoyable the new merged tribe is. But wait - Jeff tells them that he never said the tribes had merged, but that they would live together on one beach. Seeing Jeff parse his words sounded eerily reminiscent of Bill Clinton saying "I did not have sexual relations with that woman" - but I digress.
For the challenge - everyone gets three manacles and has to get in a bamboo jail. The keys are hanging on sticks just out of reach, and the prisoners must use sticks and shoelaces to get the keys. After everyone is unchained, they must dig their way out. Just think about the part in the Pirates of the Caribbean where the prisoners are trying to get the keys from the dog and you will have the mental picture. Brian immediately erects a giant pole, thrusts it through the bars and pierces a key ring. Pretty soon everyone is sticking their poles through the bars and gathering the keys. Chuay Gahn finishes unlocking themselves and has a small lead. But bad luck for them - Ted is huge, and they will need to dig a very large hole for him to escape. Sook Jai may win. But bad luck for them - Erin's breasts are huge, and they will need to dig a very large hole for her to squeeze them through. Chuay Gahn wins, and Sook Jai will go to tribal council.
At tribal council, Jeff asks everyone how the non merge affected their play. Erin talks about "someone" tattling secrets to the Chuay Gahns. Penny talks about not being able to trust one of her tribemates. Wonder who that could be? Shii Ann is screwed. She makes a play to get everyone to vote off Penny, because Penny is the one who is deceitful and should go. Everyone goes off to the voting booth - Shii Ann is voted off 4-1. Good - I hated that witch.