Survivor: Redemption Island continues to be a very strong season full of shifting social gameplay and surprising outcomes. I’m still amazed that the show can be so fresh. The same can’t be said for Phillip’s underwear, whose color has quietly faded but whose glory remains intact. Yes, we were treated to another montage of Phillip in his skivvies, again with the added bonus of watching Ashley and Natalie recoil with nausea. I certainly empathize with the two girls, but very quietly I can feel myself hating them. They have the makings of classic reality show mean girls, and if the previews for next week are any indication, they’ll be in full snotty mode soon enough.For now, we just have to contend with them saying mean things about Phillip (hey, that’s MY job) and condescending things about Andrea, who I’ve been quietly rooting for ever since her partner Matt was unceremoniously excised from the tribe. I’m certainly rooting for the guy to come back and wreck shop with Andrea, but that looks like it could be a long shot. Then again, he’s now won three Redemption Island battles in a row, ousting Kristina this week after conquering a 3-D Tetris-esque puzzle. The Force seems to be with him.
Poor Andrea is the odd girl out on the tribe, and she now must ally quietly with Phillip to advance ahead. I’m not sure how that will work out, nor am I sure how she can shuffle things up without incurring the wrath of Rob. Everyone seems to be up his ass, not realizing that he’ll be the first to dupe them all when push comes to shove. Case in point: his latest antics with the hidden immunity idol.
Turns out Grant found the latest clue, but somehow Rob managed to get it from him, swap it out with the original vague clue, and pass it off as if nothing had happened. Grant fell for it, and Rob continued his stranglehold on the tribe. It was brilliant.
The idol isn’t the only thing Rob has in his back pocket. At Redemption Island, the other tribe idiotically sent the ever sour Krista and Stephanie, Russell’s two former allies, to witness the duel. This gave the girls ample time to express their hatred for their team and willingness to switch at the tribe. They were a bit too adamant about this, and so Rob rightfully doubted their sincerity, but who knows, it may have been a game-changing move.
At least for one of the girls.
Both of them didn’t last the episode. The purple team lost the immunity challenge, much to the chagrin of firelady Julie, who fretted that throwing the challenge two weeks ago was going to come back and bite them. I didn’t understand her fear considering that the tribe had already won an immunity last week, thus seemingly breaking the curse, but whatever. They were in the losers circle now, and instead of trying to mix things up, Krista and Stephanie just moped around camp. And thus the Tribal Council turned out to be one of those boring “which one of these lame ducks [read: not DEAD ducks, as Sarita said] will be going home?” situations. No fun in that. Krista lashed out at her tribe, trying to unearth sub-alliances and such, but she came off as merely abrasive. Mike managed to put her in her place by noting that she had done nothing to improve her situation. He was right. And as much as Russell liked to talk about his tribe not being ready to play the game, it was really Krista and Stephanie who showed no pulse on the strategical side.
Ultimately, Krista went home, but she’s not gone for good. Maybe she’ll be the one to unseat Matt and make a triumphant return herself…
“Rob, as a show of devotion to you, I invite you to sodomize me.”
“I can deal with the no food and perpetual mind games, but this is too much. TOO MUCH.”
“You know what I love? Coasting on past success.”
“Ugh. I HATE this part of gym class.”
“Hey, let’s be REALLY clunky about our hatred for our tribe.”
“I suppose dropping this in the fire is for the best. After all, I did let Phillip use this buff as a jock strap one challenge.”
“I’m, like, so hungry.”
“I just want to eat.”
“But then it’s, like, so many calories to do that.”
“I hate calories.”
Natalie: “I like walking on the beach.”
Ashley: “Me too. It burns so many calories.”
“I hate calories.”
“I hate sand.”
“I hate waves.”
“I hate birds.”
“I hate food.”
“I hate clouds.”
“I hate Andrea.”
“Yeah, I hate her too.”
Andrea: “You guys, I’m right here.”
“I hate hearing.”
“I hate ears.”
“I hate Andrea’s ears because they’re ugly and they work.”
“I like your shoulder.”
“Thankx. I do too.”
“It’s really pretty.”
“So is yours.”
“Your shoulder is prettier.”
“Thanx. I think yours is even prettier.”
Andrea: “Just be honest with me: are they reissuing the DVD box set of Dear John or not?”
Ashley: “Oh my gosh! Coffee!!! I CAN’T WAIT!!!!”
Ashley: “Aren’t you guys so excited about the coff– oh, YOU’RE here.”
“If y’all don’t tell me where to go, I’m gonna start clucking like a chicken! Heck, I might just do that anyway. I love cluckin’.”
“Hold on, Ralph. I just gotta let this silent but deadly guy out. Much better. And not so silent. Sorry, folks.”
“My strategy is to talk about how no one else has strategy when it is in fact I who has no strategy beyond being a total bitch.”
“I haven’t been this disappointed since the time father destroyed my Riverdance CD.”
What did you think about the episode? What can Andrea do to fix her situation? And what did I leave out?