**Contains spoilers about Episode 6 and the preview for Episode 7, but no spoilers or rumors about who wins future challenges, gets voted out or lasts long in the game**


I’m writing this really late this week because I have been so busy since Wednesday night that I couldn’t sit down to rewatch the show and get my thoughts in order. I have had my son’s birthday, Halloween and then my daughter’s birthday these past few days – all more important than this article, but I have been thinking about it constantly because this episode was so amazing! I couldn’t wait to sit down and go over this again! 🤗

This episode was PACKED with so much in just 43 minutes – touching moments, IOI visit, reward challenge, immunity challenge and tribal council! Wow!

 Vokai had to pick someone to sit out of the reward challenge and they picked Elaine. Jeff immediately told her that she would be heading to the Island of Idols (IOI). Elaine wasn’t thrilled about this! I really liked in the reward challenge that the person who was carried on reward.pngthe sled also had to shoot for the targets. This definitely made it a more strategic decision. Lairo picked Jack (good decision – he’s small and athletic). Vokai picked Aaron. I was a bit surprised by this, but it clearly worked! Both tribes quickly got and transported all of their bags to the platform. Aaron looked like he must have practiced preseason or he's just a natural at slingshots! Vokai won and received chickens as their reward. I know chickens are a commodity on Survivor, but I think it might make me a vegetarian if I had to kill one. I just don't like to think where my food comes from!

ioi.pngSeeing Elaine with Rob and Sandra made my heart happy! I just love her personality so much – “little busted can of biscuits”! People online gave her some grief for jumping on the offer without any information, but I think most people would! I know I would! First, her tribemates are going to assume she got something. If they are going to assume it, you might as well get it! Also, advantages can save your game life! Also, that sand was going quickly and who would want to lose the chance?!?! Like Sandra said, Elaine came to play and that included embracing every chance that arises. Rob explained the upcoming immunity challenge and that Elaine would have to find the advantage during the challenge under one of the tables that hold the balls. If she was successful, she would get a Block a Vote advantage. If she was unsuccessful, she would lose her vote.

ic.pngThe immunity challenge was pretty cool, though I was surprised that it involved more basket shooting! It required teamwork to lift and move the cage, as well as athleticism with making the baskets. When Jeff told Lauren, who was sitting out of the challenge, to sit on the bench, she said "Thank God". She was clearly happy to not go to IOI! I was worried when Elaine dropped the advantage on the ground. I didn't think she realized it at first and thought she wasn't going to advantage.pngget it. I know it was any easy task for her to complete, but I bet it didn't feel easy at the time! I would have been sweating bullets! Lairo struggled with the cage and getting the balls. Vokai had a clear lead for most of the challenge. Unfortunately for Vokai, they struggled making the baskets. Jamal and Dean caught up and then won. It was nice to see a Lairo win!

tribal-council.pngTribal Council was pretty intense! Jeff asked them how they were feeling with the 4 vs. 4 split between old Vokai and old Lairo. Aaron said you have to do what’s best for your game. Tommy explained that there are more Vokai left in the game and it makes no sense for any of them to flip. He said that it makes more sense for the old Lairo to join Vokai and be in the majority. Rob said he's selling them "kool-aid”, but with the advantage it didn’t make sense for them to flip. Who wants to be the bottom of a majority? They would still be picked off one by one. I can understand not wanting to go to rocks and wanting to be (seemingly) in charge of your game, but I wouldn't be under any delusion that I was now in a safe position. Flipping would be the 'anyone but me" move. Similarly, Dan said they would go back 7 strong with the people they want to play with. That's kind of 💩 because there would still be people they want to get rid of.

suck-it-up-buttercup.pngSandra got the giggles when Elaine said that whoever is on the losing side of the vote will have to "suck it up buttercup". All of Vokai said they would be willing to draw rocks. Elaine said she doesn't like rocks, read her advantage and blocked Jason's vote. Old Vokai scrambled to pull together and target Elaine. I have to tribal-council-3.pngadmit, I thought Elaine was going. I might have closed my eyes, which could explain why I missed Aaron leaving Jason hanging on the fist bump the first time I watched the episode. Jason had to know that Aaron wasn't with them after that. I felt just like Sandra - biting my nails! Jeff ended tribal council by saying “Everybody here loves this game, and nights like tonight are why”. That was true for them, and true for the viewers! Episodes like this are 100% who Survivor is still on TV!


I am really sad to see Jason go (even though I’m really happy that Elaine didn’t go!). Jason had a great story and turned his game around after a rough start. He had entertaining confessionals and was great at puzzles. He had some bad luck with the tribe swap and Elaine getting the advantage. However, there’s a reason they picked him over the others. I’m sure this is partly because he was perceived as a strategic threat. But, it also comes down to who made the best connections and he didn’t do enough of that with old Lairo.


Next Time on Survivor – The official description is "An empire falls and a rebellion rises, but the game is far from over." I assume the empire is old Vokai on Lairo based on what they showed up. It seems that the women (at least Noura) are considering turning on Jamal and the guys are agreeing to stick together. On Vokai, Lauren feels betrayed by Missy and talks to Tommy about needing to come up with a new plan. They have two options – trust those who betrayed them (Aaron and Missy) or try and turn Elizabeth and Elaine against their allies. I don’t see option #2 as working. Elizabeth and Elaine seem pretty loyal to me. jeff-in-preview.pngThe immunity challenge includes shooting baskets (surprise surprise!) and a puzzle. Vokai may regret getting rid of Jason! 😄 Someone from Lairo visits IOI. Also, the tribal council is pretty intense! In his Entertainment Weekly interview Jeff says “I don’t want to tease too much, but I think when the episode is over, fans will once again have that feeling that Survivor is one of the very few shows that remains current and always of the moment. And because it is always of the moment, it can lead to some surprising and often inspiring conversations.” Also, in the preview during tribal council Jeff says he’s “"never had a tribal like this - ever" and looked upset.


Ranking – My ranking is based on who I enjoy the most. This could be because of personality, game play, pure entertainment value or some combination of the those. Those at the top are the ones that I want to stick around. Those at the bottom are those who I wouldn’t mind leaving. The emojis indicate how much I like them (some are tied). However, I do explain for each how safe I think they are in the game and how I think they are playing overall.

Lairo Tribe


The episode started on Lairo again due to their tribal council visit. Noura let us (and Dean) know that she would prefer to get Jamal and Jack out vs. Dean or Karishma. She wants to “kill them” before they kill her. Dean let us know that he thinks Noura is crazy and delusional. Dean then talks to Jamal and lets him know about Noura’s plan. Jamal confirmed to Dean that Noura is crazy and let us know he wants to get Noura out.


This was the Jamal episode. After his conversation with Dean, we saw Jamal playing music and teaching Kellee a dance. I loved watching Jamal and Kellee dancing! It was great to see them connecting and to see both of them lighten up and have fun.

There was an uncomfortable scene where Jack called Jamal’s buff a du-rag, but this led to a couple of really insightful and touching discussions between Jamal and Jack. To see Jamal explain what was wrong with what Jack said was refreshing (vs. holding it in or venting to others) and Jack was immediately embarrassed and remorseful due to his error. I loved to see Jack apologize, Jamal accept his apology, but also to explain that it might take him awhile to get over it. And then to see them reconnect later on and for Jack to really listen AND hear Jamal's explanation about privilege and perspective was wonderful. This segment was genuine and education. It brought tears to my eyes.

janet.png1. Janet Carbin (Original Vokai) - 59 years old ❤️❤️❤️

Sadly, we didn’t get to see much of Janet at all this episode! Regardless, I still really like her and hope we get to see more of her next week. Even if her empire falls and Lairo loses, I think Janet will be safe. Her name hasn’t ever been mentioned as a target, she’s not viewed as a threat, she’s helpful at camp, and useful at challenges.

2. Dean Kowalski (Original Lairo) - 28 years old ❤️❤️

dean.pngDean has done a great job removing the target from his back and getting close with Jamal. As long as he leads Noura to believe he’s with the girls and he stays close with the guys, he should be safe if they lose the next immunity challenge. I think they will target the weakest player (Karishma) or one of their own (Noura or Jamal).



jack.png3. Jack Nichting (Original Vokai) - 23 years old ❤️❤️

I continue to like Jack more and more. Yes, he made a mistake. However, he owned his mistake, apologized and used it as a learning opportunity to become a better person. I think Jack will be safe. His name isn’t coming up as a target and he’s definitely an asset to his tribe.


4. Kellee Kim (Original Vokai) - 29 years old ❤️❤️


It was so refreshing to see Kellee dance with Jamal. Usually Kellee is shown talking game or being serious. It was great to see her fun and charming side. Like Janet, I think Kellee is in a good spot regardless of what happens. Her name hasn’t come up and she has close connections on both sides.





5. Noura Salman (Original Vokai) - 36 years old ❤️

Noura continued to get a lot of airtime. The producers clearly recognize her entertainment value and she doesn’t disappoint. They are leading us to believe that Noura is the mastermind behind the potential split in old Vokai. If old Vokai does turn on themselves, I don’t believe that Noura is truly making this decision. Regardless, she makes me laugh! Noura could be in trouble if the guys manage to pull one or more of the girls to their side and decide to target her. I still think she’s the perfect person to bring to F2 and hope someone sees her value and drags her along for our enjoyment. 🤣

6. Jamal Shipman (Original Vokai) - 33 years old ❤️

jamal.pngAs I stated above, this was the Jamal show. It was great to see Jamal have fun, with the music and dancing, and then to see his candor and insight in the discussions with Jack. It changed my perception of Jamal. Unfortunately, I do think Jamal could be in danger. Even if the cracks in old Vokai only begin because of Noura’s delusions, it could spread if Janet and/or Kellee become paranoid about Jamal turning on them.


karishma.png7. Karishma Patel (Original Lairo) - 37 years old 👎

Karishma was shown as little as Janet this episode and is potentially safe. If old Vokai ends up sticking together, I think Karishma will go before Dean. She isn’t a help at challenges or camp and they already have the perfect person to bring to the end in Noura. It wasn’t clear how close she has become to her new tribe mates since she wasn’t shown. I hope we get to see more next week!


Vokai Tribe

vokai.pngWhen we got to Vokai, Elizabeth was freaking out over a spider. She should have no shame over her reaction! The great majority of people would freak from having a spider in their face! Old Lairo talked and agreed to draw rocks and stick together. But they immediately showed Missy and Elizabeth saying they won't go to rocks and Aaron telling Jason he won't go to rocks and will flip against Elaine.

After the reward challenge, Dan and Jason tried to figure out which chicken was a rooster vs. a hen. I always thought it was really obvious until I googled it and saw this picture. rooster-vs-chicken.pngSure, you can tell the difference, but it's not as drastic as I thought it was. If are thinking about going on Survivor and really want to know how to tell the difference, here's a helpful link: https://animals.mom.me/tell-difference-between-hen-rooster-7229.html


We FINALLY got to see IOI visitors compare notes when Elizabeth and Elaine talked. This made me SOOOO happy and I hope we get to see it every time from now on! Elaine had no reason to not tell Elizabeth (and her allies). An idol can make you a target, but an advantage like this really helps all of your allies. Elizabeth said, "We're screwed if you lose and you don't get it." Elaine responded, "No pressure."

After the immunity challenge, Elaine and Elizabeth talked to Aaron and then Missy about the advantage. Based on Aaron's and Missy's expressions and demeanor, I truly believe they had been ready to flip. I know we miss SOOO much and production choses what to show us, but I think their non-verbal communication was clear. Elaine saved herself AND the Lairo alliance for at least 3 more days. I know Aaron said in his confessional that he was really thinking about getting rid of Elaine, but I wish we got to see more.

Old Vokai was shown discussing getting rid of Elaine in case she had an idol from her IOI visit. Then production did a good job mystifying who old Lairo would target by showing Elizabeth talking about getting rid of Lauren or Dan, Missy saying Dan isn’t trustworthy and Elaine talking about getting rid of Tommy because he’s close to everyone or Jason because he’s smart and strategic. It was clear as mud who they wanted out!


elaine.png1. Elaine Stott (Original Lairo) - 41 years old ❤️❤️❤️

I was so worried that Elaine was leaving and I am SOOOO glad she stayed! I love her authenticity. I think (fingers crossed!) that Elaine is safe for now – at least until they get rid of one more person on old Vokai (which should get her to the merge). Yes, Elaine has a target on her back due to her social game, but it should be a smaller target than the athletic and strategic threats.

2. Tommy Sheehan (Original Vokai) - 26 years old ❤️❤️❤️

tommy.pngI laughed at Tommy’s expense twice this episode – once when they showed him and Jason cringing over the chicken sacrifice and again when he was glaring at Jason and Rob quoted Elaine and said, “suck it up buttercup”. I totally get it – I would have been cringing over the chicken and pissed, too. It was still funny, rob.pngthough. 🤣 Tommy probably has a target on his back now, too. If I were Aaron I would want to get Tommy out because of how betrayed Tommy felt. I hope that I’m wrong and that he sticks around for a lot longer!

3. Lauren Beck (Original Vokai) - 29 years old ❤️❤️

lauren2.pngThey should have a facecam on Lauren during all conversations she’s part of on the show. Her face is so expressive and you can tell exactly what she’s thinking! It was clear that she has grown close with Missy and trusts her, but I wish they showed us more of how they connected. I do think Lauren is safe due to her relationship with Missy and having a smaller target on her than Tommy or Dan.



elizabeth.png4. Elizabeth Beisel (Original Lairo) - 26 years old ❤️

Elizabeth has one of the worst poker faces I can remember on Survivor. I have no idea how Lauren was surprised by the tribal council after the conversation with Missy and Elizabeth at the well. I like Elizabeth way more than I thought I would preseason. I enjoy her relationship with Elaine a lot and I think she’s a pretty honest and genuine person. Yes, that could bite her in the butt eventually in Survivor, but I think it’s in her favor for now. I think Elizabeth is safe for now if they lose. Even if old Lairo turns on themselves, I see everyone else going before her!

5. Dan Spilo (Original Vokai) - 48 years old 👍👍

dan.pngDan’s confessionals are awesome and I will miss them once he’s gone. It was really interesting that Missy said she didn’t trust Dan and that he goes through their bags. His edit has improved a lot since the first episode and that surprised me. It seems really stupid on his part! I can see Dan going next if they lose. I think Lauren and Tommy would be willing to let him go and Dan hasn’t made the connections with old Lairo that they have.


missy.png6. Missy Byrd (Original Lairo) - 24 years old 👍

It was REALLY clear by Missy’s non-verbal body language when Elaine was telling her about the advantage that Missy was ready to turn on Elaine. Through that conversation, Missy’s facial expression and posture completely changed. I’m not sure if Elaine knew she was in danger before that conversation, but she had to afterwards! I am really glad that Missy chose to stay loyal. I think it was the smart move. Once you flip, nobody 100% trusts you again. As of now, Elaine, Aaron and Elizabeth trust her. Sure, Tommy, Dan and Lauren are pissed, but they are also now the minority AND they have to acknowledge that she demonstrated loyalty to her alliance. That being said, I think Missy will go shortly after the merge. She is playing really hard and is a competition threat.

7. Aaron Meredith (Original Lairo) - 36 years old 👍

aaron-2.pngAaron gets a thumbs up from me for the first time because he didn’t turn on Elaine. I liked him more after episode 5 when he was connecting with Tommy and told the story of his socks. I liked him more this episode when he stayed loyal to his Lairo alliance. I think it was the smart move (see above). Like Missy, I don’t see Aaron lasting long after the merge. He is a huge threat because of his athleticism and his game play.


Thank you for reading my thoughts and rankings. If you got this far, please leave a comment and let me know what you think!