Pre-credit sequence. Jefra! They voted Jefra out last week. I keep forgetting these things. “That was intense. Pattern continues,” Spencer says, returning to camp. Kass is displeased by the way things played out. “Anyone who crosses Tony gets their cement shoes and gets thrown in the pond,” Kass says of Jefra's sin, which was contemplating backstabbing The Don. Kass reckons that the lesson of her own flip was that you shouldn't leave anybody out and she's tired of being confused at Tribal Council. “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me,” Kass grumbles. She calls Tony a hothead and he protests that he keeps his promises until people conspire against him. Kass tells Tony that she's sick of his condescending attitude and warns him about a Jury. Spencer loves watching Tony and Kass fighting, as Kass refuses Tony's half-hearted apology.
But what does Tony think about Edgar Allan Poe? Tony has been shot at on three occasions. He tells Spencer that he never gets nervous on the job because of adrenaline. It's a conversation among the men, but Kass and the women in the shelter hear Kass' name — Tony says he's surprised that Kass isn't up and that she might be sick — and they decide he's talking trash. He's not. He's talking about police work, which Kass spins into Tony calling her a bitch. “Apparently he's getting more stupid every day,” Kass tells Trish and Tasha. Tensions build and Kass confronts Tony about what she didn't actually hear in any way. Spencer is mighty amused at this rare misunderstanding which Tony is, in fact, the wronged party. “This is a special moment,” Spencer laughs, refusing to step in and offer explanations. “You are always in my thoughts, but I wasn't talking about you,” Tony swears. He still wants to take Kass with him to the end. Kass is tired of being a cult member. “I want to kill the cult leader,” Kass says, outlining the worst season of “The Following” ever.
Does anybody know Kass' thoughts on “chaos”? We now return to “Survivor: Tony's Paranoia.” He decides he needs to squash things with Kass and explain that he wasn't talking about her. Tony's getting indignant. “I know what I said. You don't know what you heard!” he bellows. “This is a classic sign of someone who has gotten too deep into their own lies. They don't even know what they say anymore,” Kass says. She gloats yet again that she likes producing chaos. And we know this. What I wish is that she was actively lying and yanking Tony's chain, rather than just being aggressively wrong and yanking Tony's chain. Tony's fuming. “If you can, just let it go,” Trish advises. “I don't really know, but you can't convince her that that event did not happen,” Tasha smiles. “I just think it's funny that you're totally losing your mind and self-destructing out here,” Kass tells Tony and, at his urging, she says she's going to write his name down and he'd better play his Idol. “You write my name down and you're going home,” Tony promises her. He's so unhinged that he tells everybody about his Tyler Perry Idol. Kass doesn't believe him. Tony tells Tasha and Spencer that they've moved up another notch.
Breakout. Reward time. They're divided into two teams of three. They have to use sandbags to destroy a block wall from the other side, then they have to rebuild their wall. Wanna know what they're playing for? They're serving as “Survivor” Goodwill Ambassadors to a local school, delivering supplies. “A little nourishment for the soul,” Probst tells them, before promising they'll also get nourishment for the stomach in the form of hamburgers and hot dogs. Tasha, Trish and Tony are going against Woo, Spencer and Kass. Spencer's team as a small lead as they start rebuilding their puzzle. Zzzz. Wake me up when this is over. Spencer solves his puzzle after Probst was initially skeptical of his “Build the puzzle from the bottom” strategy. His team wins.
Little Monsters. The ambassadors roll into town in a shiny buss. The kids pour out to see them and to receive book bags and playground games. Woo, humbled, shows off some fancy basketball skills. “I'll be the first to say that I don't really like kids,” says Spencer, who initially calls the kids “little monsters,” but notes he was surprised by how positive he found this. Woo, previously the least impressive remaining player in the game, is magnificent with the kids. He jokes. He demonstrates martial arts. Suddenly, Woo's awesome. “I really like Woo a lot more after seeing how he was with the kids,” Kass says aptly, before turning to Woo and Spencer as new allies. Bonding over their hatred of Tony, they work out a three-way vote to flush the Idol or get Tony out. Spencer, of course, is happy to do whatever. Woo isn't sure, even when Kass tells him the last time the Idol can be used is at Final 5. Spencer suggests they could be the Final 3 and Kass calls it “a fair three.” And Woo agrees, tentatively. Very tentatively. Boring Woo is back! He'll now be “considering” for the foreseeable future.
Lie big or go home. The winners return to camp. Woo has decided he's in and Kass appreciates his introspection. Spencer tells Tasha about the new plan and she's game, but they agree that everything depends on Woo not spilling. Tony and Trish agree that they'll ask Woo what went down and if he says there wasn't any strategy talk, they'll know he's lying. They ask. And he says… That Spencer and Kass were talking about taking Tasha out? Really? That's the cover lie? Who came up with that brilliance? Is it such a crazy story that Tony is going to buy it? “I have no reason not to trust him,” Tony tells the camera, but he also says Woo's story makes no sense. “I might have been wrong about Woo all along,” Tony acknowledges.
Count Von Count. Immunity is back up for grabs! Kelly Wigglesworth holds a record with four straight Immunity wins. Tasha has won three straight. They are six different stations of items. You have to count the items and use them to solve a combination lock. The goal seems to be to see who can win the most numbers at once. Lots of people try and fail repeatedly. It's not a great TV challenge because just as the players don't know what numbers they're getting wrong, we don't know either. We don't know which counts are most problematic or which players are coming closest. Nothing. It's a dud of a challenge and for 25 minutes, everybody is wrong. Spencer is right and wins Individual Immunity for the second time and for the first time without relying on the flatness of his head!
GGOAT – Greatest Goat Of All Time. Tasha's “bummed” that she didn't win Immunity, but she says she isn't done and that “there's still havoc to wreak.” The boys will vote Tony and the girls will vote Trish. That's the plan. “We can't lose,” Spencer says, incorrect. “He's gonna freak out about my decision,” Woo mumbles. “I think Woo is ready to make a move,” Tasha says, vowing to act like she expects to go. Saying she expects to go, she wanders off to the pond. “She's too comfortable and when did you ever see her concede?” Tony reads the situation correctly. He's prepared to use whatever Idol he needs to use. “He's like our version of Russell Hantz,” Tasha tells Kass. However, this is the wrong thing to have told Kass, because Kass knows that as much as Russell strutted around thinking he controlled the game, he lost because everybody hated him. So… Now she wants to go to the end with him? “Nobody ever gives the jerk the money, so maybe I keep him,” Kass tells us, before going to Woo and feeling him out on flipping back from their flip. “I'm sitting there like, 'Whoa, this is insane,'” Woo says. And nobody knows what's coming next.
Tribal Council. Tasha announces that she thinks she's going, but she tries to call Tasha out for his various Idols. “Her not being worried makes me worried,” Tony says. Tasha says Tony's the bigger strategic threat. “That's her deflecting the target off her back,” Tony says. Probst tells everybody that they need to flush an Idol out tonight, but Tony says that they should have trust in his alliance and he shouldn't need to use it. There's a lot of chatter, but I don't know if it's making any difference. “I think tonight might be a blindside,” Kass says. Hmmm..
The Vote. Tony writes Tasha's name. Spencer writes Tony's name. Tasha writes Trush. Woo's vote is the big mystery. Probst goes to tally and… Tony sits on his Idol. Oy. The votes: Tasha. Tony. Trish. Tasha. TASHA. And that's that. Boo. She smiles and departs without a word. Spencer is the last Brain. [UPDATE: Yeah. Kass is a Brain too. Forgot about her. She makes it easy.] Tasha says that making it as far as she did after the early Brains struggles was amazing. She laughs and says that the castaways were right to vote her out, because she felt like she had another Immunity run in her. And both Woo and Kass ended up voting for Tasha.
Bottom Line, Part I. In a Final 3 situation, I don't think anybody would have beaten Tasha. She won Immunities. She did a few strategic things. And everybody liked her. Maybe Spencer beats her. But Tony doesn't and Kass doesn't and Trish doesn't and Woo doesn't. So given that… Yep. I'm not going to quibble with a vote to take her out. It behooved nobody to keep Tasha in the game other than Spencer. And Spencer voted to keep her. I love fancy “Survivor” moves, but nobody was benefitted by letting Tasha get into a position where she might win her way into the Final 3 and there's been no Immunity yet that wasn't at least somewhat well-suited for her.
Bottom Line, Part II. So… Lots of yelling in this episode, eh? We really did spend around 10 minutes on Kass yelling at Tony about something he didn't say and Tony handling her accusations in the worst way possible and Kass twisting the knife. And, like I said above, if Kass had known that Tony didn't say anything about her and was just out there messing with Tony's brain out of sheer chaotic glee, I'd have endorsed that entirely. But it was Kass being sanctimonious and Tony being condescending. And there was a lot of that. In fact, there was almost nothing else in the episode. There was a lame Reward challenge (for a worthy and great prize) in which even Probst seemed not to understand basic puzzle-making. There was a lame Immunity challenge in which there was no way to generate tension and Probst had to tell us afterwards how close Tasha came to winning, misunderstanding rudimentary suspense. And then there was a big, elaborate plan to get Tony out that dramatic irony told us never would have gotten Tony out, but it didn't get Tony out nor did they flush an Idol. And so, indeed, Tony is guaranteed a place in the Top 4 and it looks like there's a strong chance we'll get to see whether this is a jury tainted by bitterness or a jury prone to accepting paranoid-but-complicated gameplay.
Bottom Line, Part III. I really think this was a huge Immunity win for Spencer and will contribute to making him unbeatable if he makes the Final 3. He has a strong challenge resume, a resume as both a leader and pawn in alliances and nobody other than Kass hates him. He's been the underdog since the double-elimination in the first episode and he keeps sticking around one way or another. With two more weeks to go, he's definitely the one I'm rooting for.
Bottom Line, Part IV. I have to keep reminding myself about Woo at the school. I liked that Woo. He reminded me of the Woo we met in the first episode, the Woo who wanted to be Cliff Robinson's sidekick. I liked that Woo. Then he went back to being: “OK, here's a play, Woo.” [Five minutes of blank-eyed silence.] “OK.” Last week, I said that Woo gets no votes from anybody. But I guess I can now imagine a Final 3 of Woo, Trish and Tony in which the Jury hates Tony, the Jury hates Trish and somehow Woo gets some votes out of not being hated. Does he get enough votes? No clue. But that lie he told Trish and Tony to throw them off of the scent? That was some bad lying.
What did you think of tonight's episode?