Survivor 11/03 recap: The Case Of The No Class Ass
Dinahann: Gather ‘round the campfire, babies, and Mama will tell you a story about a brave and heroic band of survivors in the Guatemalan jungle. These poor people have to compete with each other for food and luxuries. They don’t even have a bed to sleep in!
Babies: *Gasp* No bed to sleep in? We’re ascared, Mama. Is there a monster?
Dinahann: Yes, a hotheaded, mannerless southern Troll named Jamie. He growls a lot, but some people want him to stay because they know if there are only two people left in the jungle, and he’s one of them, he won’t win the game. And there are other monsters, too, like Bobby Jon the Dim-Witted and Judd the Ogre! Now skootch in here closely. Is everyone ready? *Babies nod* Okay. Once upon a time…
Yaxha fought a huge leather ball and won the reward challenge, trading skin for chocolate. They got a zip ride, which looked a little like swinging through the air on Tarzan’s vine, except instead of just a rope they had an elaborate system of pulleys and a harness. That sort of took the fun out of it, like watching a dignified Tarzan with a safety net. Yaxha visited Nakum for Danni’s birthday and Jamie was surly. Nakum won a puzzling immunity challenge. Brandon wavered but stuck with Bobby Jon. Amy was booted and then the most unexpected thing occurred. Yaxha merged with Nakum! Surprise! Ten are left to play the game.
Who’s That Howling Around My Camp?
It’s night 18 at Nakum, and all are sleeping until the vestiges of Yaxha stroll into the camp, carrying new buffs and the unsettling news that the tribes have now merged. Gary has powwowed with the other Yaxha members, advising them to stick together and pretend to be helpful slaves to the formerly opposing team. In other words, kiss ass.
Bobby Jon says he can’t be around Steph for more than five minutes without wanting to vomit, or around Jamie for more than five minutes without wanting to beat him up. Bobby Jon has a problem with impulse control. When he bulls into the camp and starts a fire, Jamie says he hopes they don’t try to come in to the shelter because there’s not room enough for all of them. Privately Bobby Jon simmers and offers to knock out a tooth or two for Jamie.
Monkey See, Monkey Do
Creative editing shows first Jamie and then a monkey yawning, and it’s like Survivor: Animal Farm- impossible to tell them apart. Old Yaxha members Brandon, Bobby Jon and Danni begin the plan of being subservient, gathering wood in a martyred way while Jamie rolls his eyes and makes derisive noises. Gary busies himself grinding corn. In separate confessionals, Brandon says he and Bobby Jon are the most likely ones next up on the chopping block, and Danni says she feels like an outsider.
Idol Small, Jungle Tall
Later, Rafe and Lydia bounce through the jungle like Bambi and his sister and I expect a huge snake to drop on them or a hungry croc to rush out of the bushes and grab a leg. Instead, they come upon today’s tree mail. A small individual immunity idol has been hidden in the woods. Finding the idol will confer individual immunity upon whoever finds it. They can only use the idol once, and they must announce their intention to use it at tribal council, before the voting begins. The idol’s immunity powers will expire when there are only four players remaining. There’s only one catch – the idol is only six inches tall and there are no clues as to where it will be hidden.
The remaining tribal members listen intently as Lydia reads and Rafe interprets the missive. They begin nonchalantly poking in holes and exploring the hills. Gary won’t tell if he finds it, and Brandon needs the idol because he feels he has a target on his head.
Other tribal eyes watch as Stephenie and Bobby Jon meet during the search for the idol. Bobby Jon says that he really wants to be on the jury. Stephenie agrees, telling Bobby Jon he deserves to be on the jury, and she’ll do everything in her power to take off Brandon first. They hug on it, but Steph says privately that she made no promises. As Bobby continues to look for the idol, the camera pans to a tree directly behind him, where the idol sits in the crotch of a tree.
Day 20: Name that Tribe!
Cheerleader Lydia initiates a discussion on what the blended tribe should be named, and Xhakum is decided upon. She paints the new name on the tribal flag, explaining that they are now just one big happy family. Brandon looks on sullenly as she and Rafe stretch the flag across two trees and fasten it on. It looks like the extended family has a few stepchildren.
The immunity idol remains on everyone’s mind. Jamie doesn’t want the old Yaxha to get it. Bobby Jon says he, Gary, Brandon and Danni are sitting ducks without it. Judd says looking for it is driving him crazy, so he refuses to look. Rafe the wilderness guide stumbles into a hornet’s nest while searching for the idol, and races away with the angry hornets buzzing behind him. I’m sure I saw him get stung at least once, but Rafe can run pretty quickly when he needs to.
Back at camp, Gary makes hooks to fish. Stephenie just wants something to eat. In previous years, when the tribes merged, there was a feast. Danni says their new tribal members complain all the time. Yeah, she’s talking about you, Steph. Lydia moans that it’s been two days since the merge, where’s the feast? Jamie says it’s retarded, and he’s bored.
In self-defense, Danni, Gary, Brandon and Bobby Jon decide to go fishing and head to their canoe. They don’t like the feeling that they have to earn their keep. Brandon says the Nakum tribe just help themselves to everything Yaxha brought to the camp. Bobby Jon calls them pigs.
Meanwhile, Stephenie, Cindy, Jamie, Judd and Rafe remain at camp. Wait a minute, who am I leaving out? One…two…three…four…five… Oh, right. Lydia, who plays so far under the radar that half the time I can’t remember her. They help themselves to the last of the honey, smearing it on their dirty fingers as they trash talk the departed members. Judd suggests that the next person voted out be the one that brings back the biggest fish. Lydia, looking off into the distance with a concerned look on her face, quickly turns to the others: “You guys, that’s a great idea!” she says with a big smile. Um, either Lydia’s evil or she’s figuring out how to play the game. Rafe is uncomfortable, fidgeting, and he can’t look the other members in the eye. Secretly he says putting the others down as soon as they leave the camp isn’t a pretty way to play the game. He wonders tentatively if he’s a member of the axis of evil. The group decides to pick off Brandon, Bobby Jon and Danni in that order.
Day 21: Pot Heads
A new tree mail is received with hints about today’s immunity challenge. Clay pots are provided so the tribe can practice walking with the pots on their heads. Judd glides, balancing the pot effortlessly, while Danni’s falls off and breaks.
When they gather for the challenge everyone grins at the large feast waiting. Finally, food, but not for everyone. Jeff explains that the tribal members can chose to eat if they feel safe from being voted out. If they feel they are in danger they will have to forgo the food and compete for immunity, but they can’t do both. The object of today’s challenge is to stand completely still, balancing a large clay pot on their head while standing in front of the team members that chose to eat, watching them chow. If at the end of one hour there are members still standing, they will race up the pyramid and back down. The last person left with the pot on their head will win immunity.
Rafe, Jamie, Lydia and Stephenie all opt to feast while Brandon, Cindy, Danni, Bobby Jon, Gary and Judd balance the pots on their heads. The feasters fill their plates and bellies as the potheads look on hungrily, licking their lips. Jamie tells Jeff that Brandon and Bobby Jon are competing because they are the strongest athletes and most likely to be voted out, while Judd wants to protect the old Nakum lead. Bobby Jon calls Jamie on it: “I thought we were all just one team.” Jamie says Bobby Jon knows they’re not. Bobby Jon clenches his fists as he says he won’t let Jamie “big boy” him. I love Bobby Jon, if only for his southern aphorisms. Listening to the two of them is like opening a Faulkner novel and reading dialogue from the middle of page 72. Fascinating.
Thirty minutes later Jamie continues to heckle Bobby Jon: “How ya doin’?” Rafe looks like he’s about to cry. He whispers to Stephenie that it just seems wrong to be so divided. She says she knows; “Just don’t look at them” she advises. How does it feel to be a member of the axis of evil, Rafe? Danni bobbles and the pot falls from her head. No food + no immunity make Danni an unhappy camper.
At the end of the hour, Gary, Brandon, Bobby Jon, Judd and Cindy remain standing. The competition moves to the pyramid, but it’s over quickly as Gary is the only one able to keep the pot balanced. Gary wins immunity, and the others are at risk unless one of them has secretly found the hidden immunity idol. Jeff herds them back to camp to decide who will be going home tonight.
Once there, Jamie says that next time he won’t be eating while his fellow tribal members compete. Judd is irritated. He tells Jamie that he doesn’t care what Jamie does but it pissed him off when he ran his mouth during the competition. It ruined Judd’s concentration. Danni says it felt like a slap in the face when Jamie admitted that the old Nakum tribe was allied against them. She, Cindy Rafe and Bobby Jon look at each other, wondering what to do. Privately Cindy says Jamie showed no class, and the others are seeing him as the immature person he is.
Rafe tells Danni privately that he feels bad, hinting that he wants to vote Jamie off. In the confessional he says he can’t respect himself if he continues the game with Jamie. He calls it sleeping with the devil, but somehow when Rafe says it he looks like a fly trapped in a spider’s web instead of a man with resolve.
Meanwhile, Stephenie, Judd and Bobby Jon bitch about Jamie’s behavior. Bobby Jon tells them that he knows whom he’s voting for tonight, as if they had any doubt. The camera pans to two birds pecking each other as Bobby Jon says he wanted to smash his bucket over Jamie’s head when he was running his mouth.
Brandon, Jamie and Bobby Jon gather around the campfire and Jamie can’t resist needling Bobby Jon. When Bobby Jon refuses to play, Jamie tells him that Brandon is the one on the chopping block tonight. Brandon just stands dumbly, like the unpopular kid in school, as Jamie and Bobby Jon argue. Jamie tries to get Bobby Jon to say who he wants sent home. “If it’s me, just say it.” He challenges. After a few moments of silence he leaves, and Bobby Jon and Brandon stare at each other across the fire. “He’s probably goin’ home tonight” Bobby Jon offers. He half-heartedly tries to convince Brandon that Judd, Stephenie and Rafe have had enough of Jamie’s crassness. “I’m goin’ to crap mah pants if it works out that way, Dude.” Brandon replies.
Aaaand it’s time for tribal council. The tribe marches uneasily into the ruins as Jeff looks on solemnly. Rafe goes first, saying that he was uncomfortable when Jamie confronted them at the challenge today. He doesn't feel good about it being six against four, us against them. It’s a game about numbers, but also about respecting each other. Bobby Jon calls Jamie “no class”, a statement that Jamie contests: “I have class, I can be the bigger man.” Bobby Jon tells him to shut up. The others just look away as they argue. Jamie says it’s disrespectful to call him no class. Pot, meet Kettle. Brandon just sits with a faint gleam of hope in his eyes. You see? You see? I deserve to stay over Jamie! Pulease!
Jeff shakes his head and asks Cindy why she competed today since she’s a member of the magic six. Cindy says she can eat when she gets home but she’ll never have another opportunity to compete on Survivor. I guess she forgot about Steph and Bobby Jon being on their second go-around. Cindy’s feelings were hurt because Judd was cheered on. What am I, an idiot for standing there trying? I’m a part of the team, too. Gary hopes that everyone will vote what’s in their heart because at the end of the game, that’s what counts. Rafe and Cindy look thoughtful. Foreshadowing? Naah.
No one comes forth with the immunity idol, and it’s time to vote. Jamie votes for Brandon. “I have the utmost respect for you.” He says. Bobby Jon casts his vote for Jamie: “Part of having southern pride is being a southern gentleman. And no, you don’t have any class at all.” Jeff tallies the votes, and the vote seesaws between Brandon and Jamie, giving me hope for awhile. Alas, the final vote is Brandon six, Jamie four. Brandon stands to leave, shaking Bobby Jon’s hand and hugging Danni. “You’re like the sister I never had.” he tells her, showing both Jamie and Bobby Jon what true class is.
Jeff reminds the remaining members that all but the final two will be on the jury. Everything matters.
As the closing credits roll the votes are shown:
Judd voted for Brandon
Lydia voted for Brandon
Jamie voted for Brandon
Stephanie voted for Brandon
Rafe voted for Brandon
Cindy voted for Brandon
Gary voted for Jamie
Danni voted for Jamie
Bobby Jon voted for Jamie
Brandon voted for Jamie.
No surprises; everyone voted straight down tribal lines. In voiceover Brandon says that he played the way he wanted to and is leaving with his pride intact. I’m sure his grandmother is proud of him. Heck, I am, too.
Next time on Survivor: Bobby Jon and Jamie continue their Hatfield/McCoy feud, the search heats up for the immunity idol, and Judd throws up in the shelter and then denies it. Good times ahead, peeps!
C’mon over here and whisper your favorite in my ear. I promise I won’t tell! Email me at Dinahann@fansofrealitytv.com