Survivor Recap November 16, 2011
At Te Tuna, Coach apologizes for what he’s going to say, but says it anyway; Jim is the worst kind of guy because he’s friendly to your face, but will drop you when the chips are done. But with him gone, the rest of the tribe has nothing to worry about. Trust him! (umm, except for that pesky little voting out thing they’ll be going to again, but besides that, nothing at ALL to worry about!)
“Survivor 101, Rule 37,” interviews Coach, “anyone who’s on the bottom of the alliance better not feel like they’re on the bottom of the alliance, or they’re going to revolt and try to scramble to find themselves a better place in the game. “
Whitney’s take; “Coach is running the show like he’s Jesus. All of them think that they are going to go to the end. You can’t take seven people to the end. I don’t understand how these ‘smart’ people can be so stupid.”
Because it’s Survivor, Whitney! And it’s not only the audience that suspends it’s disbelief for the hour. The castaways are hungry, need sleep, and have no books, internet or even radio to take their minds off the experience. It’s Lord of the Flies’ for grownups, baby.
Next morning, Coach’s new pet, Cochran, practices Tai Chi on the beach with Coach. Coach confides to Cochran that he’s a little bit worried. Albert’s been really squirrelly; Brandon’s running around in ‘Brandon mode.’ ” I sometimes think I’m gonna get blindsided,” he says, but all Cochran is worried about is if everyone is about to vote him out. “I’ll do whatever I can, but I’m not in control of the game,” says Coach.
Everyone gathers at the duel (truel?) on Redemption Island to see Keith, Ozzy and Jim compete. They will be balancing poles holding a shelf, but the poles will be resting on the back of their hands. Tricky. The winner stays at Redemption; the other two will become the first two members of the jury.
The boys get ready, the duel is on. Jim becomes the first member of the jury, Keith the second, and Ozzy stays in the game. Both Jim and Keith wish Ozzy well before leaving for civilization.
Ozzy’s ecstatic to be alone on Redemption. There’s an ocean full of food, interesting reefs and caves to explore, and no connivers and schemers to deal with. For someone with his survivor skills, it’s his own personal paradise.
At Te Tuna, the food is nearly non-existent. Dawn tells Cochran that she feels terrible that she didn’t tell the ex-Savaii tribe about his betrayal, and that it’s time for him to help her out. Cochran thinks that he could be the ‘angel’ that brings he, Dawn and Whitney back together, potentially earning him more respect (and votes) than he’d get blindly following Upolu. In other words, it’s time for Cochran’s ‘big move.’
To the challenge! Balance a bowl of rice on your head while you walk the teeter totter plank. Seems a terrible waste of rice when everyone is getting thinner and hungrier by the day, but that’s’ Survivor ‘for you. Dawn, Brandon and Sophie are the only real competitors, as everyone else struggles, but Sophie wins immunity.
Jeff announces that there will be a twist at tonight’s Tribal Council, but he’s not saying what the twist will be. Damn you, Jeff Probst, and your awesome secrets!
Back at Te Tuna, Cochran asks Coach if the plan is still to eliminate either Dawn or Whitney, and Coach concurs. But Cochran’s worried what the twist will be at Council – could it be a double elimination? Where does that leave him? Dawn and Whitney consider the competition, and decide to approach Albert as their only hope of salvation. They tell him it looks like Coach will take Edna and Sophie to the end. Albert agrees, and they scheme to vote Edna out.
Brandon notices Cochran standing around listening while Albert, Dawn and Whitney are talking privately, and calls him out in front of Coach. Cochran is scrambling. While playing chess with Albert, Cochran is furious to hear that he’ll be voted out after Dawn and Whitney, and feels betrayed that his sacrifice still puts him below Edna in the pecking order. Coach hovers nervously nearby. Albert approaches Sophie with the plan to dump Edna in favor of Cochran, and she agrees with his strategy. Neither likes Edna anyway. “This game is not ‘Out Organize, Out Clean and Out Gather’, it’s freakin’ Survivor!” says Albert.
Coach slithers around the camp like the Grinch under a Christmas tree, listening, watching and scowling. Later he interviews that he’s changing his management style to Mafia style – if anybody goes against the family, they’re dead. But I thought you said you weren’t in charge, Coach!
Night, and time for Tribal Council. Jeff asks Dawn and Whitney how they feel about their safety in the game, and the two ladies admit their only hope is to find a crack in the alliance. I suddenly notice that Albert is sitting at the far end, with Whitney, Dawn and Cochran beside him. He is physically separated from his former tribe mates, whether by fate or choice.
Dawn and Whitney say that the other tribe members should realize that those that are 5th, 6th and 7th in the ex-Upolu tribe are going to be leaving the game soon as well. They know Cochran is 7th, but have they thought about where they stand in Coach’s lottery? Jeff points out to Cochran that, as an avid viewer of Survivor, he must realize that he’s on the chopping block. After Dawn and Whitney are axed, it’s Cochran’s turn to go. Cochran has come very, very late to a party that is not interested in letting him in the door. Cochran pretends nonchalance, as he agrees with Jeff that it’s a great time for someone to make a big move. It won’t be Cochran though – he’s sipped the Coach Kool-Aid.
Jeff asks Coach how he feels about the possibility of someone forming a new alliance that will shift the balance of power. Coach does a fancy verbal dance, acknowledging the possibility, absolving himself from being amongst the connivers, and again claiming that he’s not running the show.
Whitney begs to disagree, saying that she’s observed that everyone runs to report back to Coach, so it would seem like, just maybe, Coach is indeed running the show. Albert, when asked, denies that Coach is his leader, or indeed the leader of their alliance, even if it looks that way. Coach says he doesn’t feel like the leader, but he likes to get information on everyone’s actions, which he can file away and use when it’s his turn to be in jeopardy. And he thinks that time is coming soon.
Well, they vote, and sure enough, Dawn’s torch is snuffed. We find out later that Albert never even stuck with his plan to vote for Edna, so his fear of Coach must run deeper than his boastful words.
Now for the twist – another immunity challenge, with a vote to follow. The challenge is a series of questions, based on survival tactics. Sophie once again wins immunity, and Whitney is out of the game. You are next, Cochran.
Next time on Survivor: Brandon stops catching fish, and starts catching heat. And the Dragon Slayer upgrades his name …. to Zeus. “I seem to think Zeus ate his children?” asks Cochran.
On Redemption Island, Dawn tearfully greets Ozzy, and interviews that things are going to get very chaotic. For a tribe that has focused so much on unity and loyalty, it’s going to be very hard to turn on each other. Whitney arrives, and they hug it out.
A reminder for viewers – next week is a ‘re-cap’ show, pre-Thanksgiving, so there will not be a recap for this episode.