'Survivor: Blood vs. Water': 2 people head to Redemption Island
Vytas is congratulating everyone on the blindside, though he has sworn vengeance. Tina, meanwhile, is not taking it as well. Her "congrats" is less than sincere and she immediately says all the people who went against Aras now have five jury votes that won't go their way. As Tyson says, Tina's not really a "gamer" and she needs to stop acting like everybody is just going to be nice all the time.
That may have been what happened in Australia, but that was a long time ago -- and also a bit of an aberration.
But to Tina's credit, she tells Katie to play her own game and not feel like she has to bring her mom into her alliance because she needs to do what is in her own best interest. Whether Katie will actually do that is definitely in question.
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It's bug-eatin' time, y'all! Yee and haw. Have to say, I think I could handle this pretty well. The only one that trips me up every. single. time. is the balut -- that fertilized duck embryo. That thing is nasty, it's eating an unborn baby duck. GROSS.
Round 1 is Tyson, Vytas, Monica, Katie and Laura with 40 live mealworms to eat. Hmm. Do you chew or do you just try to swallow as fast as you can? Looks like chewing is the way to go -- Tyson, Monica and Vytas advance, even after Vytas has to pick up his spit-up mealworms off the ground. Now that's baller.
Round 2 is the same thing between Hayden, Ciera, Gervase, Tina and Caleb. The ones to advance are Hayden, Gervase and Caleb. Man, the women are TERRIBLE at this. C'mon, ladies.
Round 3 is between the six who advanced, eating a pile of pig intestines. That seems so much easier than mealworms to me, but a lot of them are struggling. However, Monica steps up big time and is the first to advance. Heck yeah, Culpepper. Well done, lady.
The other advancing castaway is Gervase, who has come a long way since Season 1 in this challenge. Good for him -- but sorry, go Monica. Show those boys.
The final round is two giant grubs wriggling around on their plates, the item Gervase couldn't eat in Season 1. Seriously, that seems super nasty. They're HUGE. It's pretty close but Monica pulls it out and jumps on Jeff Probst. Can't blame her, I would too.
The idea is four votes to Vytas and three votes to Katie, in case somebody has a Hidden Idol. Seems pretty solid -- and it's early, so are we going to watch a Redemption Island duel at the end of the episode? Hmm.
There's not much suspense, as Vytas seems to know he's going home since he doesn't have Immunity. He begs Hayden to throw him a vote so it's 4-3 Katie going, but why would they? She has shown to be absolutely NO threat in challenges, while Vytas is a beast. It's time get rid of him before he goes on an Immunity run.
Monica can't rein in her paranoia about who is going home, but I still suspect it'll be Vytas. He makes a good argument to Tyson that pairs are dangerous, so get rid of Katie. But Tina and Katie are not gamers or challenge threats, so who cares at this point?
Tyson wonders if he needs to keep Vytas so there's a guys majority and not a possible women's alliance, but it still seems the smart thing to do to get out Vytas. Those women aren't ready to align, it doesn't seem.
Vytas gets all riled up talking about "how dare they" vote out his little brother. Well, we get that, but relax, dude. It's a game -- they didn't kill Aras.
He also really calls out Monica and her paranoia, citing the strategy that all you do is tell Monica she's a doormat and she'll do whatever you want to prove she's not a doormat. Ha! Vytas also urges the women to rally together and go after the guys. Man, he is out of blood.
The votes go Vytas, Katie, Tyson, Vytas, Vytas, Vytas and then Vytas is joining his brother at Redemption Island. That should be a pretty brutal duel.
Back at the camp, Monica's alliance is mad that she switched her vote from Katie to Vytas because if Vytas had the Immunity Idol, Tyson may have gone home.
Do you suppose the plan was always to have Redemption in play after the merge? Or did the Power that Be only keep it after Aras got blindsided? As in, rigging it so that a popular, good-looking guy could stay? Things that make you go hmm.
Update: Whoops, we had that backwards at Redemption. Aras is OK with Vytas re-entering the game, but Vytas doesn't feel the same. It's still pretty snotty, though at least somewhat understandable since Aras played and won and this is Vytas' first time.
Immunity No. 2
Wow, so we're going right to Immunity so that Redemption Island is back up to three people. Huh. It's a balancing challenge, placing coins on the end of a sword (the handle end, obviously. Monica and Ciera drop coins and are quickly ousted.
Tina is out next, followed by Gervase and Laura, leaving four people. At this point, Caleb and Hayden look pretty steady, but no sooner do I type that than Caleb is out. Then Tyson and Hayden drop and Katie does her first interesting thing all game.
Tina vows to find the Idol at camp, with Katie having told her what she knows (between salt water and fresh water), so she just runs off to search -- managing to lose the boys who are trailing her, which is kind of hilarious.
Tyson doesn't want to spill the beans that he has the Idol, so he's going along with trailing Tina all around the jungle. It gets kind of stupid because Tina has to stop searching so that they don't know she doesn't have it, so then they're all just hanging out in the jungle like morons.
Monica is paranoid about splitting the votes because somebody has to absorb some votes in case Tina has the Idol and she knows it'll be her if push comes to shove, so Tyson and Gervase aren't sure what to do with "loose cannon" Monica. Gervase floats the idea of voting off Monica.
Honestly, that's a better plan for their alliance -- Monica is a better competitor generally, plus she is a bit of a wild card and you can't align with people where you don't know what they're going to do on any given day. Not that I want Monica gone, but it makes sense for Tyson adn Gervase.
Honestly, I can't believe Monica hasn't gone to Tina and Laura and made a women's alliance with them and their daughters. That's five votes, ladies. Do the math! Pick a guy and pick him off. Hello!
Interestingly, Tina makes a push at Tribal to sway some votes her way but honestly, Tina should have been doing this back at camp. She's a smart enough woman to have swayed Monica, Ciera and Laura, I think. And maybe she tried -- this is a jam-packed episode, so we haven't seen much strategy.
Tribal moves into talking about the alliance of seven (Tyson, Gervase, Hayden, Caleb, Laura, Ciera and Monica) potentially splitting their votes just in case Tina has the Idol. Monica says that's a stupid plan, but it's not -- from their point of view. If they don't split and Tina does have the Idol, then whomever Tina and Katie vote for is going home and it sure as heck ain't gonna be Monica. They're gonna take out a key player, like Tyson.
So the alliance is better off throwing three votes Monica's way and Monica just has to kind of sit there and take it because she is for sure on low person on the totem pole.
It's a shame that Tina didn't push harder to get Monica and Laura (that we saw). Women's alliances rarely work on shows like this and it's frustrating. Do you think it's 'cause women are more often cast to be pretty instead of smart? Not that women can't be both and not that I'm even saying these women aren't pretty and smart because they certainly seem to be both. But I'm speaking in generalities about shows like "Survivor" and "Big Brother." But honestly, all-female alliances hardly ever work and it's kind of baffling why not because all-male alliances work all the time.
No one plays the Idol, though Tina kind of hilariously fakes everybody out. She's, like, the most adorable woman ever.
The votes go Monica, Tina, Tyson (so they DID split, ha!), Tina, Tina, Tina and Tina. Was there another vote for Monica or not? Hmm.
Next week: Looks like Laura is on the chopping block.