Well, hell's bells! Just as I was thinking that Survivor was starting to get soft, they pull off an episode like tonight's that restores my faith in the show once again. What a great episode! Initially, it started with the usual chitter chatter as Bikal returns to camp from the last Tribal Council. Mike is happy he was spared and Corinne is happy she saved him and expresses how pleased she is with herself. Crazy ol' Phillip pulls everyone aside to tell them how he “threw” the last challenge in a last minute decision just so they could go to Tribal and get rid of Julia.
Exactly. No one is buying this bull and they all question Phil's sanity once again. The fact that they're still questioning is amazing since he is clearly unhinged. Corrine describes him as “cuckoo for cocoa puffs!” It was about this time that I noticed poor Cochran. Now I like Cochran. He's smart and funny but, man oh man, there has never been another player that looks worse than Cochran on this show.
After 19 days, he has taken on the appearance of a nebbishy Neanderthal, but without the inherent survival skills. He's a redheaded mess with a scraggly beard and a long sleeved dress shirt that I can almost smell through the TV. He looks haggard and I'm amazed that he is so much healthier than he actual looks! Having said that, the rest of this show is really all Cochran, all the time! More about that later…
Tonight we saw the two tribes merge becoming one tribe called Enil Edam – which though sounding exotic – is really just Madeline spelled backwards. Madeline is Malcolm's mom's name so he wanted to give her a shout out. No one else knows and they all went along with it!
As everyone eats more food and puts on their new green buffs, the wrangling for position starts right away. Phillip goes to Andrea to make sure she is on board with his weird self. He has one of the best lines of the night when he tells her “When you're laying in bed tonight pretend you are Boston Rob. That's what I do!” Wow… ol' Phillip really drank that Boston Rob Kool-Aid, didn't he?
Corinne starts wooing Malcolm and making big plans to take out her old alliance with an all-new and improved alliance of Malcolm, Eddie, Reynold, Michael and Dawn. More about that later… because (DRUM ROLL PLEASE!!) this is where I got super excited and realized that this episode was going to be great!
They brought back a real Immunity Challenge! An eating challenge!
I haven't seen one of these on Survivor in ages. The players are given some really disgusting things to eat and the first three in each “heat” who get it down move on to the next heat. Finally! Even Cochran was elated about this one saying that it might improve his love life if he can eat something gross. I'm not sure of his reasoning, but hey, who am I to judge!
In the first heat, there are two groups that have to get through and they have to eat live beetle larvae. Disgusting! These things were as big as a grown man's thumb and covered in slime and spiky things. In the first round, Andrea comes in first, followed by Malcolm and then Eddy. In the second group, Cochran comes in first, followed by Phillip and then Mike.
Those six go on to Round Two which consists of a large plate of “shipworms”. Shipworms, Probst explains, are the “termites” of the sea and they eat through the wooden parts of ships. On the plate they make a runny dark vomitus mess! Malcolm comes in first, followed by Eddy… Cochran? Cochran, it turns out, is tearing up this competition!
Round Three is Balut. Balut is a Philippine tradition of a partially cooked duck embryo in the shell. When it's cracked open you see formed part of the actual duck (beak, legs, eyeballs, and feathers). It's gross. I know… I have seen this up close and personal and the smell cannot even be described. Eddy cannot take it and the winner of this round is Malcolm and… COCHRAN!! Malcolm calls him the “ginger Kobayashi!” referring to the well-known competitive eater.
The last round is a large plate of pig brains. Malcolm does what he can to hold his own but Cochran is an official eating machine and he takes the victory easily! He then does this endearing but nerdy victory dance in front of everyone. Yes, this was a classic competition! And just when I didn't think this episode could get better – it did!
Everyone was happy for Cochran but the scrambling began right away at camp. Phillip wants to split the vote, Corinne does not. Eddie and Reynold think this is their chance. Corinne runs to Dawn to set up a plan to get rid of Sherri. Dawn, who doesn't want to piss away her game like she did last time, runs right to Cochran who clearly sees Corinne's actions as foolish because it would diminish their numbers. He runs to Andrea and they figure out a new plan so they enlist Philip and no one is more surprised than wicked Corinne when she is the victim of a classic Survivor blindside! The look on her face! PRICELESS!
Oh yeah, this is the Survivor I know and love and have been missing for some time now! Welcome back, baby!
Did anyone hear me yell “YES!” three times beginning at 7:54pm CDT this evening? Well, I did and it was great. Man, I enjoy this show. It usually makes feel good and sometimes it can cause me to smile. Tonight’s episode accomplished both and it also gave me occasion to yell, “YES!” Not once. Not twice. No, tonight was a three “YES!” show. Why the cause for my elation, for my jubilation? Even if you didn’t get a chance to watch, after reading Mary Beth’s 2Cents you are fully aware that the annoyingly evil Corinne was blindsided tonight. And the look on her face was delicious!
The first thing I wrote on my pad tonight was “Corinne is making me sick!” She is so irritating. Then I was briefly reminded that Special Agent Phil (SAP) is full of shit. After that we had another reminder that Corinne “loves to play with a gay” and evidently, Michael fulfills this need for her. She is so very annoying.
Then we had to deal with Dawn crying and acting spastic. Again. Sheesh! Finally, it was Erik saying “awesome” and “cool” a whole bunch of times. He really freaked out when he saw the “cool dudes” on the boat coming to pick up the Gota tribe for the merge with the bunch from Bikal.
When the tribes merged they were treated a big old basket of food. While they were feasting, the castaways discussed a name for the tribe. When SAP came up with Stanley, everyone looked at him like he was weird. And they were right. He is.
They finally agreed on Enil Edam. The slightly air-headed Andrea thought it meant “New Beginning”, but actually it was Malcolm’s mom’s name, Madeline, spelled backwards. It’s amazing what a bright person can make pea-brained people believe. The only person who complained about the new moniker was the irritating Corrine. She said it had too many syllables. Honest, she did. I told you she was obnoxious.
The Immunity Challenge was a Survivor Classic – Eating Gross Local Delicacies!
The first three rounds whittled the field down to Cochran, Malcolm and Eddie. They had to extract duck embryos from their shells and gobble them down. Unfortunately for Eddie, he bit on the beak right away and was puking feathers and duck stuff everywhere. Cochran and Malcolm had no problems wolfing theirs down.
That put them in the finals. The tall, good-looking hunk vs. the ginger-haired pipsqueak dweeb for immunity. Their entrée? A nice slab of pig brain. As soon as Probst shouted go, the pair quickly slid the gelatinous chunk of swine gray matter into their mouths. In a matter of seconds they both choked it down with Cochran opening his empty mouth just ahead of Malcolm. Having won immunity, Cochran did a dorky little celebratory dance.
I’m really starting to like that spaz.
The same can’t be said for Corinne. Back at camp, after the challenge, she immediately started arguing with SAP. When their argument proved fruitless, she went and started plotting with Malcolm. I said to myself, “Self, this isn’t good, Mary Beth’s boyfriend is hanging around with the wrong people.”
And it’s true. Malcolm was starting to get cocky and smug. Just like Corinne. When they finished scheming, Corinne told Malcolm that she couldn’t stand SAP and that “I want to throat punch him every day.” Nice chick, huh?
When Corinne told Dawn the evil plan she and Malcolm had come up with, Dawn instantly snitched to Cochran. Cochran promptly ran to Andrea and filled her in. She made a beeline to SAP, who then informed Sherri of what was happening. By the time the headed to Tribal Council, Stealth R Us had devised a plan to counteract the scheme of Corinne and Malcolm.
Tribal Council was a thing of beauty! With each vote Probst read for Sherri, the arrogant smirk on Corinne’s face grew wider. When it reached five I thought she was burst with self-satisfaction. She was almost giddy.
Then it happened. The look on her face was about to drastically change in a steady and very deliberate fashion.
Probst read, “Corinne”. Then, “Corinne”. Again, he said, “Corinne”. A fourth time he called out, “Corinne”. When he read, “Corinne” for the fifth time, I yelled “YES!” for the first time. “Corinne” for the sixth time got my second, “YES!” The seventh and final “Corinne” got my final and loudest “YES!”
I was so very happy. Still am. “YES!” Until next time…from the booth.