Last Week: Phillip recovered his shorts, Andrea regretted turning on Matt, Grant rewarded Rob’s friendship with cake, Ashley and Natalie refused to do anything that required strategy, and Steve and Ralph were sent to a place that offers redemption.
39 Days, 18 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog
Let’s take a look at the tribe as it currently stands…
The Murlonio Tribe (wearing black)
Andrea – 21, Student
Ashley – 25, Nurse
Grant – 29, Yoga Instructor
Natalie – 19, Dancer
Phillip – 52, Former Federal Agent?
Rob – 35, “Survivor” Hall of Famer
Currently Residing on Redemption Island (wearing a population boom)
Matt – 22, Pre-Med Student
Mike – 31, Former Marine
Ralph – 45, Farmer
Steve – 51, Former NFL Player
Writer’s Note: I hate spelling “Murlonio.” For some reason the proper spelling doesn’t stick in my head. Who do I talk to about having them go back to “Ometepe”?
We start off this week’s show with Ralph making his way to Redemption Island. He’s only there a few minutes before Steve joins the party. They shake hands and exchange hugs.
I find this troublesome. There’s no stress at Redemption Island other than “Who’s going to win the challenge?” There’s no backstabbing or strategy. Are we going to end up with a situation where the person who goes back into the game is BFFs with the entire jury?
Steve does the math and points out that the majority of the jury will be former Zapaterans. Oof…I don’t think I like this.
Meanwhile over at Murlonio, Natalie breaks down a little because she misses her family. If only “Survivor” would do something where a player’s family member could come visit them…
The following morning Tree Mail arrives in the form of a box marked with a Sprint logo.
Sprint…The Now Network
Sure enough, the box contains a Sprint Epic 4G phone that is full of videos from home.
I’m putting the “Proud” count at three.
We get to hear from Natalie’s mom (proud), Andrea’s dad (not proud), Phillip’s sister (not proud), Rob’s sister (proud), Grant’s sister’s husband (not proud), and Ashley’s mother (not proud).
Only two prouds?!
However, the Murlonians weren’t the only ones to receive a phone. It seems like the Sprint folks made a special delivery to Redemption Island too.
Proud count at two.
We see videos from Ralph’s buddy (proud), Michael’s mom (not proud), Steve’s brother (not proud), and Matt’s brother (not proud).
One?! One lousy proud? I’d be proud of my sister for surviving 31 days in the wilderness.
Redemption Island Challenge Time: Each player will try to break a series of four tiles with a ball. First person to break all of their tiles gets to spend time with their loved one. The last person to break all of their tiles will be eliminated.
Round 1: Matt, Ralph, and Steve miss, Mike hits one.
Round 2: All four guys break a tile.
Round 3: Matt, Mike, and Ralph break a tile. Steve misses.
Round 4: Matt, Ralph, and Steve miss. Mike hits his final tile winning “Love” from a family member.
It always weirds me out a little to hear J-Pro refer to it as winning “Love.”
Round 5: Matt and Ralph break their third tiles, Steve misses.
Round 6: Matt and Ralph both break their fourth tiles, Steve is eliminated from the game.
Before Mike can claim his “Love,” J-Pro tells Mike that he has a choice between the Redemption Islanders spending time with their loved ones, or the Murlonians spending time with their loved ones.
Mike quotes some scripture, then decides to do right by the most people and allow the Murlotians to visit with their loved ones.
Probst is shocked, but Mike’s mom isn’t. She knows her son is a hero. Yeah, the military is having a good week.
Back at camp, Ashley is showing her mother around the hut. Apparently it’s Ashley’s responsibility to mark the calendar every day. That’ll shut up those people who think she doesn’t do anything.
Andrea’s dad asks the question that America has been wondering; how does she still look so good after 30 days out in the wilderness? So unfair.
Rob breaks down his strategy to his sister…wait…where’s Amber?! Anywho, he tells her that Grant and Natalie both think they’re going to the end with him, and if they’d just talk to each other he’d be in trouble.
Immunity Challenge Time: Players will race to retrieve a set of puzzle steps. They’ll then place those steps on a giant staircase. First person to place all their pieces and get to the top wins immunity.
Andrea, Grant, and Rob jump ahead with the first set of steps. Grant gets a bit of a lead after the second set but Rob and Andrea are right behind him. During the final set, Rob manages to take the lead, but his legs start to give out on him. It’s ugly. He’s literally using a step as a crutch to get up the stairs. Somehow he manages to complete the final set and win immunity.
Wow, Rob’s a mess. His legs are cramped and he’s dehydrated. Natalie brings him water. He nearly passes out while drinking it.
Yikes, Probst must be having “Heroes vs. Villains” flashbacks to Rob’s collapse.
Politicking around camp seems to be focused on lovely young Andrea. However, Phillip isn’t going to let them have a leisurely afternoon without sprinkling a little crazy on it.
Phillip wants us to know that this has been his plan all along. He wanted to NaOnka his way to the finals. I don’t believe this for one second. Phillip was very close to being the first person out of Ometepe. I think he’s trying to make himself look good in hindsight.
Phillip is also convinced that he has a Final Tribal Council argument to use against Rob that nobody else has thought of. Oh geez, let’s see…
1. Rob’s already been on the show thirty times?
2. Rob’s wife is a millionaire and he doesn’t need the money?
3. Rob will eventually have to stab most people in the back?
4. Rob lied about where the term “Murlonio” comes from?
Sorry Phillip, those arguments have already been thought of. Unless you’re going to argue that Rob doesn’t deserve votes because he’s a Red Sox fan. That’d totally sway my vote.
That night at Tribal Council, Andrea claims to be confident with the relationships she has formed. Hmm…
Jeff asks Phillip if it’s a benefit to not be good at challenges. Phillip disregards the questions and goes on about how good he is at challenges. J-Pro’s working for you, Phillip. Keep quiet for once.
Grant thinks being yourself is the best thing you can do in the game, because it’s easy to see through people. How Rob kept from giggling I’ll never know.
Probsty asks if anyone feels nervous about the night’s vote. Nobody raises their hand. That’s amazing. Sorry, that’s AMAZING. How does everyone feel safe? That’s unpossible. (‘Survivor” points for whoever gets that reference.)
Voting Time: No votes are shown.
Probst does his tallying duties and returns; we’ve got one vote for Andrea, one vote for Phillip, two votes for Andrea and the fourteenth person to be sent to Redemption Island is…Andrea.
Verdict: No shocker there. In fact, we haven’t had a shocking vote since Matt was voted out the second time.
Redemption Island is scaring the crap out of me. I can’t help but think the season will fall flat if the ultimate winner comes from there. When it was one-on-one duels it was cool, but now you can stick around by coming in third.
Who’s Going to Win? As if Rob’s argument about leading and manipulating Ometepe wasn’t impressive enough, now he has a series of immunity wins to back it up. It’s going to be a crime when he loses.
Power Rankings Update: Sash and I both had Matt and Mike as our Redemption Island picks. So, we both earn two points. Sash and I both had Andrea in spot six. So, we both earn six points. The current score is now Team Sash 137 to Team Gordon 124. I pitched another perfect game and still can’t gain ground on Sash! Unfair. However, none of the readers did better than I did. Although @truedorktimes gets extra credit for picking all three of the Redemption Island winners correctly.
Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes