'Survivor: Caramoan': It's double elimination week - who gets blindsided?

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survivor-caramoan-final-8.jpgA week ago, Malcolm and his cohorts couldn't pull off another upset on "Survivor: Caramoan." Do Reynold and/or Eddie stand a chance this week against the strong Fave alliance? Let's find out!

Madeline

Cochran's getting a little power-hungry, which actually looks good on him because he's always such an unassuming guy. Meanwhile, Eddie and Reynold know their backs are up against it and they're going to fight. Not that anyone can blame them -- what else would they?

Immunity Challenge


We jump right into the next Immunity like three seconds into the episode. Is this a double elimination episode? It must be.

The challenge is fairly awesome. Everyone has a wooden, pyramidal platform to balance on out in the windy ocean, moving up to increasingly smaller footholds. This is where we would find one spot to stare at and run the catalog of Rodgers & Hammerstein in our head.

But in this challenge, the winner also gets a reward in the form of "information," so Reynold is chomping at the bit for this one.

So Probst immediately starts tempting them with food -- donuts and milk. Erik and Eddie dive off immediately for it. Um, what? That's the worst ever, Eddie totally deserves to be voted off just for being such a wuss. Dude, you're talking about a million dollars. You probably aren't going to win, but you certainly won't win if you give up Immunity for donuts.

The next food item is three hotdogs and a pop. Cochran takes it, as the women shoot daggers at him. Heh. At the 30-minute mark, they move to the top of the platform, which greatly favors the women (smaller feet). That knocks out Dawn and then Sherri, so it's down to Reynold, Brenda and Andrea.

Reynold makes two very, very impressive saves when he loses his balance - can you imagine how hard that is with such big feet? (Sheesh, we sound like Probst with his mancrush.) However, on the third balance problem, Reynold can't stay up.

Neither Brenda nor Andrea is willing to throw it to the other one, so the challenge continues -- for THREE HOURS. Oh my god. That's over two hours from when Reynold jumped off. That is insane.

At this point, the girls are so steady that they have to take it to one foot on the platform to make it harder. That's bonkers, y'all. "Let's make the challenge harder 'cause we're too good at this." Heee. So the girls lift up their left legs and Brenda falls, so Andrea wins.

Pre Tribal


Andrea shares the note with Brenda, which is the clue to teh Hidden Immunity Idol. Which sounds like the same clue as Malcolm had -- and Erik finds it immediately. Then both Cochran and myself wonder why he just hands it over to Andrea?! Dude. That is yours, you found it. She didn't have to bring you all along to dig. You keep that Idol!

However, the machinations start because Andrea is nervous about Brenda as a threat. She campaigns hard to Dawn, Cochran and Sherri about it, but we don't see too much of that because suddenly it's time for Tribal Council.

Tribal Council

Eddie says he sacrificed his pride for donuts, but he knew he wasn't going to last long anyway. We suppose that kind of makes sense, but we would've held out for some protein.

The topic of timing comes up -- Cochran says you have to balance making a move at the right time, i.e. when a move is going to be made against you. It takes a lot of self-awareness, as he rightly says. But something about this editing makes us pretty sure it's not Brenda going home. It's just a smidge early for that.

Dawn then says a rather staggering thing -- that she's not always trustworthy and that she's sometimes playing both sides. Wow. It's totally true, but nobody ever admits it. Dawn is awesome (and also a little crazy).

During the vote, we see Brenda vote for Reynold, telling him he should've been more humble. She's not wrong. The votes go Erik, Sherri, Reynold, Eddie, Reynold, Eddie, Reynold and Reynold. No big surprise there, despite the talk about Brenda.

Madeline part II

Interestingly, Andrea's talk about blindsiding someone gets Cochran worried about losing his strongest ally in Dawn. So he tells Brenda and Dawn about Andrea's scheming and they're ready to blindside her. Cochran's being very smart -- Andrea is probably the biggest strategic threat to him, she just chose the wrong person to enlist in her machinations.

You can't choose the other really smart person. Too many cooks and all that. She should've gotten Brenda, Dawn and Sherri on board with blindsiding Cochran. He's really smart, plus he's actually been winning challenges. He's a threat, but nobody sees him as one and he'll probably will a million dollars because of it.

Not that we mind if he wins. We love Cochran. We also understand why nobody's targeting him. We'd want to play with him 'til the end. It would be hard to vote him out.

Immunity Challenge part II

It's a water obstacle course and then a ladder puzzle. First to the top to raise the flag wins. Everybody's pretty much in it once they get to the puzzle portion -- but Erik has had the lead leaving every stage and then does his puzzle really quickly, winning Immunity.

Now just don't give it away, doof.

And then when Probst asks him about the last time he had Immunity, Erik says "he's way too scared" to give away Immunity this time. UM. WHAT?! Not "I learned my lesson last time" or "of course not, who would be that stupid?" He says he's too scared to do it -- like if he felt more secure, he might do it.

No wonder Malcolm told us that for an entire month, he had no idea what was going through Erik's head. Because whatever is going through his head is really wacky.

Pre Tribal


Erik later says he "learned his lesson" about giving away Immunity, but ... we're not convinced the right person couldn't get him to give it away. Just earlier this episode, he gave the Hidden Idol to Andrea, despite not having to at all.

Andrea is campaigning hard to get rid of Brenda -- "I want Brenda out, I talked to everybody, and now she's going." Wow, that's some hubris that is just begging for a blindside. Feeling pretty good, Andrea then decides to lounge around with Eddie and let him in on the plan.

Meanwhile, Cochran is worried about Andrea being so attached to Eddie and he rallies the ladies about voting Andrea out. They're worried about her Idol, so they're talking about splitting the votes between Andrea and Eddie. That seems like a good plan, actually. Wonder what Erik's thinking ... does anybody know?

Just as I type that, Cochran checks in with Erik, who is non-committal. Then Andrea comes up and looks at him sideways and he suddenly thinks she's going to take him to the Final Three with her. Dude.

And then Erik preens about how he's in control of the game right now because it all hinges on what he does. What he fails to grasp is that if there are two plans and you are the mastermind behind neither one, you are in control of nothing. Sure, you get to decide how tonight's vote goes. But you are not in control of the game.

He would be infuriating to play "Survivor" with.

Tribal Council


Everybody admits to having lied to everyone else at certain points, then Andrea admits she has the Hidden Idol. You can kind of tell she's not going to use it, though.

During the vote, we see Andrea vote Brenda and vice versa and that's it. Before the vote, Andrea doesn't play her Idol -- and it may just be the editing, but she totally should've known she needed to play it. Let's just say, if I'm ever sitting down at a poker table, I want Dawn, Brenda and Cochran sitting with me. Sheesh, you guys.

The votes go Brenda, Andrea, Eddie, Eddie, Andrea (big exclamation from Andrea at this point, ha!), Brenda and ... Andrea. To her immense credit, she's not mad. She's more flabbergasted at how good she got got.

Next week: Is Cochran going to be blindsided? And loved ones! Get the tissues ready.

Photo/Video credit: CBS