“Espionage behind every coconut tree.” Survivor: Game Changers April 19, 2017 recap

27 Apr
At the beginning of this episode, the two tribes go to see Jeff Probst and see the traditional “merge feast” spread out behind him. There is also a mysterious covered table next to him. Probst announces that one person from each tribe must volunteer to go without food. If that doesn’t happen, everyone will only get what’s on the covered table: namely one cracker with cheese per person, and a bottle of ice tea for everyone to share!
 
Quickly, Brad volunteers, saying “it’s what Monica would do,” meaning his wife who was on Survivor previously. And Tai volunteers for the blue team. How many brownie points does this win the two men? Cirie probably speaks for everyone when she tells us, “Everything in this game is calculated.” I guess this had the potential to be a dramatic moment, but it kind of falls flat.
 
Sierra reminds us that her legacy advantage can only be used at two junctures in the game, and this is the first of them with 13 people left. As for Brad, he wants to gun for either Hali or Michaela. Debbie, meanwhile, is busy getting drunk, twerking and mooning people. She claims (to us) that it was all an act and just strategy, and she didn’t have a sip of alcohol. Also, Zeke fills in everyone on the Jeff Varner controversy from the last tribal council.
 
Lots of people are talking about voting Michaela out, or would be if she didn’t keep sneaking up on the people having this discussion. However, the alliance of Zeke-Cirie-Andrea-Sarah is more interested in keeping Michaela around since there’s a chance she could join them later. Hali, more or less a free agent, feels the same way.
 
Cirie has some advice for Michaela: “You have to control your emotions.”
 
The immunity challenge involves standing on tiptoes and pressing a block onto a crossbar with the top of one’s head. It comes down to Andrea and Tai, and Andrea wins.
 
Who to vote out? Sierra thinks Hali must have an idol since she is acting so confident. She wants to split the vote between Hali and Michaela, but tell the two of them that the vote is for Zeke. Surprisingly she tells this to Cirie who was just now portrayed as Zeke’s ally. Then we see Cirie tells Michaela to vote Zeke. How does that help Cirie?
 
At tribal council there is much talk about what a crazy day it was. And I’m sure it was, but not in a particularly entertaining way. Jeff Probst asks the group: if someone wants to deny he has an idol, why doesn’t he just offer to strip down and empty his bag? Hali announces “I’ll shake down in front of everyone right now,” but only if someone asks her to, she won’t just do it.
 
It’s time to vote, and Cirie shows us that her vote is for Michaela and says “This is to save your life and mine.” Huh? It is also announced that Hali is voted out and is the first jury member. So it looks like a 10-person jury and a final three.
 
On to the second half of the double episode. Cirie tells Michaela she can’t let anyone know about their alliance. Cirie and Zeke talk about voting out Brad or Sierra. Andrea agrees, but tells Zeke they can’t tell Debbie or Tai about their plans. But Zeke tells us that Cirie and Andrea are much bigger strategic threats than Sierra. And Zeke tells Debbie and Tai that Cirie and Andrea are tight, but Debbie is skeptical.
 
I skipped over a not particularly notable reward challenge just now. Let’s get to the immunity challenge, which involves wrapping oneself around a pole high in the air and hanging on as long as possible. I remember Ozzy doing this in his original Cook Islands season. Probst tells us Ozzy has done this twice, and won the challenge both times. It comes down to Andrea, Tai, and Ozzy, then just the two men who are up there at least half an hour longer than anyone else. Finally Ozzy can’t hold on anymore and slides down, his arm bleeding.
 
Now, I have no idea why Zeke is suddenly on a mission to get rid of Andrea, but he is. Someone talks about voting Zeke, then Debbie proposes voting out Ozzy.
 
At tribal council, Ozzy is asked by Probst how this differs from his first three seasons. Ozzy answers “there’s espionage behind every coconut tree.” Everyone goes to the voting booth, and after they’re done, Debbie announced that she “gave up the basic necessities of life” on Exile Island in order to gain the advantage of an extra vote (she is sticking to the roughing-it story since nobody is in a position to disprove it). She goes back to vote a second time.
 
Alas, Ozzy is voted out.
 
The votes are as follows:
 
1 vote Sierra: Cirie (???)
1 vote Aubry: Zeke (just as mystifying)
4 votes Zeke: Andrea, Aubry, Michaela, Ozzy
7 votes Ozzy: Brad, Sierra, Troyzan, Sarah, Tai, Debbie, and a second vote from Debbie
 
So Debbie essentially wasted her extra vote.
 
Perhaps this recap did not make a whole lot of sense. Well, neither did the episode because we did not see anything that made us understand the relationship between Zeke, Andrea, Cirie, and Aubry and where what went sour.
 
 
contenders: 1. Brad, 2. Cirie, 3. Sierra, 4. Aubry, 5. Andrea, 6. Troyzan, 7. Zeke, 8. Sarah
 
no chance: Tai, Debbie, Michaela
 
jury and who I think they’ll vote for: Hali (no idea), Ozzy (Zeke)
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