Jacuzzi threesome can't save 'Survivor' damsel

Parvatishallow_cookislands_cbs_240_1Well, everybody got what they wanted on last week's episode of Survivor: Cook Island. Jonathan, the season's most effectively competitive (and unquestionably obnoxious) player, was voted out. Will everybody be happier in his absence on Thursday's (Dec. 14) episode? Or will they, like me, miss the King Rat?

Pre-credit sequence. Jonathan's hat has been hung in effigy and Adam and Parvati are still gloating over eliminating the "nuisance." While they acknowledge that they're in a weak spot, they know they have to find a way to break up the plucky Aitu Four. It's hard not to be amused by the fact that despite squandering several positions of power due to strategic idiocy (and physical apathy), Parvati and Adam have decided to think of themselves as underdogs. I guess they may be underdogs in terms of numbers, but they sure aren't loveable underdogs.

Here's mud in everybody's eye. Tree-mail warns them that the reward challenge will be muddy, but that the prize is rejuvenation. The goal is to use your body to accumulate mud and fill buckets. The top three finishers will get a luxury evening with food and a bed. In theory the person with the most surface area ought to have the advantage, or at least the person best able to maximize their surface area. Jeff Probst keeps announcing everybody's strategies, mostly producing suggestive dialogue like "Parvati, loading up her chest" and "Ozzy's got a nice load on his hair." Somehow Ozzy accumulates 45 pounds of mud, nearly twice his nearest competitor. Parvati and Yul finish second and third, while Ozzie sends Adam off to Exile Island.

Muddied and conspiratorial. Sundra and Becky are alone at camp, bonding over their misery and Ozzie's challenge mastery. They may not be smart enough to swim off their mud, but Becky is quick enough to realize that Ozzie may be unbeatable, which kind of makes him a teeny tiny bit of a threat. She decides Ozzie may be in need of eradication.

Muddied and on a plane. Parvati, Ozzie and Yul are sitting, covered in inches of guck, on a nice plane swathed in plastic wrap. They arrive at a remote resort and promptly get leied and shower ("I will remember that shower, that one particular shower, for the rest of my life," Ozzie observes). The showers are followed by massages for everybody. A chef prepares an elaborate meal full of flavors ("And nothing tastes like coconut," Parvati enthuses), followed by a well-timed power outage serves as a perfect intro for a native dance ("It was like way better than dinner and a movie," Parvati adds). Then they all get naked in the hot tub, which means flirtation between Ozzie and Parvati, who notes that the numbers are in her favor. I'm undecided if that's nasty-hot or just plain nasty.

Adamgentry2_cookislands_cbs_240_1Muddied and truly alone. Adam seems to have swum and little more. He lies on Exile Island letting the flies cover him. "Who needs a fire when you can eat everything raw?" he mutters, chowing down on some slimy crustacean or other as the rain begins to fall.

Stealth mastermind Becky. As soon as the reward threesome returns, Becky pulls Yul aside to warn him that Ozzie needs to get got. Yul knows he can't beat Ozzie in Final Two and agrees that a change is in order. Yul also figures that Parvati may be a threat, because she could have the power to lure Ozzie.

Immunity challenge. They have to cross a series of balance beams carrying puzzle pieces that can be used to create a ball-maze. You'll never guess who gets out to a massive lead... Yup. That'd be Ozzie. That's the problem with plotting against a guy who can't lose. Yul catches up a bit, but it's an illusion. It's another challenge win for Ozzie.

Time to play "Let's Lure Ozzie!" Since Ozzie is immune, Yul wants to separate Greek Row. Adam tells him he wants to stay and Yul says he can make it happen. Parvati tells the puppet master that she would like to stay, but Yul offers no promises. In the tent, Adam and Parvati approach Ozzie to ask if there's any way for him to teeter. He entertains the idea, a prospect that makes Yul's head hurt. He storms into the tent and warns Adam against plotting. Yul doesn't break Adam's knee-caps, but you can see how he might like the idea.

Tribal council. Yul begins his effort to curry favor with the jury by bringing Jonathan's hat to him. This act of generosity is discussed for much longer than it should be. Odd. Is the Rat King really going to make his choice based on a floppy hat? The Aitu alliance opts to go against Parvati.

The finale is Sunday. Who are you rooting for? And, more importantly, who do you think will win?