'Survivor: Cagayan's' tribal shake-up blindsides a player who feels safe

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survivor-cagayan-odd-one-out-CBS.jpgIn the face of the twist kiiiiiind of screwing the Brains over, the "Survivor: Cagayan" castaways are shaken up a bit this week.

Reward Challenge

The Brains are trying to buck themselves up as this being the start of their comeback, but it's all for naught, since it's time to drop yer buffs. They're forming two new tribes and most people seem less than please -- of course they do, because you're sitting fairly pretty when the Brainiacs can't win jack squat.

The two new tribes are Aparri and Salana, though interestingly instead of just splitting the Brains up, they draw for new tribes. On Aparri it's all Brainiacs paired with three Beauties (Jeremiah, Morgan and Alexis) and then Sarah from the Brawnies. Then Salana is all the Brawnies (minus Sarah) plus LJ and Jefra. It would seem that Salana got a better draw here. Oh, and Sarah is possibly completely screwed, which she says (though not that blatantly).

The challenge is two people dragging one person from the other tribe off a pole and across a finish line. First tribe to two points wins donuts.

It's as physical as you expect a challenge like this to be, but Aparri doesn't stand a chance since Salana can put Cliff on the pole twice. The man is enormous, no one can move him. Duh. Salana takes home the donuts, as Spencer laments losing again. Well, he may not be that thrilled with still being with "the moms," but one person made the entire difference in that challenge. Aparri would have had a chance if a normal-sized person was competing instead of Cliff, or they would have won if Cliff had been put on Aparri. That's the entire difference in that challenge.

Salana

Back at Salana's camp, Trish bonds with LJ, though insists it's not woo-woo bonding because she's "not Mrs. Robinson." Hee. I love Trish, I'd love to see her go far. She's a kick. Also, LJ is excited to find an opening in their tribe, since he thinks Jefra needs to be the one they target and not him.

trish-survivor-cagayan-CBS.jpgHowever, Lindsey is mad about Trish, I don't know, flaunting her stuff? It's weird. If Trish is a single 50-year-old, why not flirt with a hot younger guy? What do you care, Lindsey? But Cliff doesn't like it either -- he thinks he has to keep an eye on Stella getting her groove back. Hopefully it's all alliance-based and not just a weird thing about an older woman not acting like she's 88 years old with one foot in the grave.

Also, Cliff better be minding his own backyard, since everybody seems to want him out. Trish doesn't take long to bring this up to Jefra, who of course is delighted to hear there's a possible opening for her and LJ to stick around.

Aparri

Spencer is delighted to find that the Beauties are like junior high school students, talking smack about each other and talking behind each other's backs left and right. It's funny how Spencer can't believe that they're so bad at being social, but he's got it wrong -- they're good at being social butterflies, who gossip and smack talk. They're just not good strategic "Survivor" players. It's two different things.

Either way, the Brains are suddenly sitting very pretty, with a bunch of Beauties to prey on. Heh.

Immunity Challenge

The challenge is smashing a log through two walls then putting it through a table maze and banging a gong. The tribes are neck-and-neck going into the table maze, which is a slight surprise.

The table maze is kind of a hot mess for both tribes, with a lot of cooks in the kitchen. But they finish very, very close to one another, with Aparri pulling it out and the Brainiacs obviously going crazy because they've barely tasted victory so far on the show.

In an interview after the challenge, Tony can't believe they lost. It is a little surprising because the (mostly) Brawns did well enough on the puzzle that if they'd kept their lead on the wall-smashing part, they would have won easily. But anyway, he says LJ has to go. We'll see if that's what happens.

Pre-Tribal


Cliff, Woo and Lindsey are on the get-LJ-out train with Tony, while Trish, LJ and Jefra are targeting Cliff. However, Trish seems to think Tony will go along with her plan to get Cliff out. She talks to Tony and he can't believe she's considering flipping since they have the numbers but he's not completely against getting Cliff out because he doesn't entirely trust Cliff.

The show would have us think that Tony's considering flipping, but we don't buy it. We think the Brawnies are sticking together and getting out LJ.

Tribal Council

The Brawnies basically say it's all about numbers and not to play with emotion -- you have to have the strong numbers. It's a thinly-veiled message at Trish (and maybe Tony). We still don't see LJ sticking around.

The votes go LJ, Cliff, LJ, Cliff, LJ, Cliff and ... Cliff. Wow, that's a shocker. For real, it's quite surprising that Tony flipped, the editors really played that close to the vest.

Next week: Lindsey's hatred of Trish boils over. We aren't sure we agree with Lindsey calling Trish a bully, but we'll see how it plays out.
Photo/Video credit: CBS