Pre-credit sequence. Timbira returns to camp after voting out Jerry. Coach is still annoyed about the tribe impugning his leadership, specially Black Widow Erinn.. “It pissed me off and it made me think Erinn’s gotta go, because she’s the cancer in the tribe,” Coach says, as Erinn picks her nose by firelight. The next morning, leadership is up for discussion at a tribe pow-wow. Tyson’s OK with letting Brendan and Coach fight it out. “I wasn’t paying attention,” he says. “I don’t care.” Coach, however, cares deeply. Very deeply. Although he publicly tells the tribe he’ll gladly let Brendan lead, he tells the camera, “If you look at me, you look at Brendan, who looks stronger? I do. We need to thrive in the wild and not just exist.”
[Full recap, with spoilers, after the bump.]
A** over tea-kettle. In Jalapao, Spencer’s concerned about how the repeated visits to Exile Sand Dune are impacting Taj’s psyche. But Taj’s psyche is actually fine and she’s looking for the opportunity to clue Stephen in on the alliance he doesn’t know he’s in. “This is the deal… This is going to change your life,” she begins. “Do you want to be a part of the biggest upset in ‘Survivor’ history?’ It’s a good pitch and Stephen’s response is, “Yes I do.” He tells the camera, “I might have just stumbled a**-backwards into a huge alliance.” He’s excited, though less-so when he’s told that the alliance require he be sent to Exile Sand Dune at some point.
Secret alliance — You’re doing it wrong. While Taj has mobilized her Exile partner in Stephen, Brendan has been too busy having leadership foisted upon him to let Sierra in on their little secret. He admits, “It could be a pretty heinous situation.”
You put the load right on me. It’s time for a Reward Challenge. Want to know what they’re playing for? The reward is a camp raid. The winner will send two people to the other tribe and they’ll be able to steal two items. The challenge is a bit hard to explain. Let’s just say that it involves three weight-bearers for each team — Joe, Taj and JT for Jalapao and Debbie, Brendan and Tyson for Timbira — and two other people trying to weight them down. Basically, last person standing wins. It’s about endurance and strategy and it appears to take forever to play out. I hadn’t remembered this challenge from “Survivor: Pearl Island,” but Jeff helpfully reminds us that Rupert was able to handle 220 pounds. Brendan goes out first, at 200 pounds. Tyson drops out at 140. That puts it all on Debbie for Timbira. JT drops out at 220, which ties Rupert’s record, followed by Joe. That leaves Taj for Jalapao. At 100 pounds, Debbie drops out and Jalapao wins reward. Taj comes over and gives her a big hug. At Taj’s urging, Jalapao opts to send Sierra to Exile Sand Dune, but Sierra doesn’t know the play! She picks Taj for a return engagement instead of going with Stephen, so it could be worse. Coach is concerned for his food supply.
How do you live? I steal. In Timbira, they’re wondering if they have anything of value for the Jalapao raiders to steal. They reckon they’ll be after the beans, but they wonder if there’s anything they can make look more appealing. JT and Joe show up and, after a little hugging, they look around. “You want to be on good terms with them, because you’re probably gonna be living with them in the future, but in the back of your mind, you’re like ‘I wanna punch these guys in the head,'” says the ever-quotable Tyson. The Jalapao boys, reckoning that you never know where you might end up, take one bag of beans and one watering can, leaving another.
Panty Droppin’ Pimp Spray. Sandy doesn’t understand JT and Joe’s bean-leaving ways. She also isn’t pleased with the specific kind of beans they acquired, repeating, “They are fartin’ beans.” The repetition has begun to get on Sydney’s nerves. The feeling is mutual. Sandy is tired of Sydney’s unavoidable hotness and the attention said hotness gets from the gentleman of Jalapao. Turns out Sydney’s taken to sleeping without a bra and wandering around in the guys’ boxers. “They love her to death,” Sandy warns. “They’re gonna put your name down, man, you better do something. You better be pullin’ off more than a bra. You better be pullin’ some panties off or something,” Sandy advises colorfully.
If baby, I’m the bottom, I’m the top. On Exile Sand Dune, Taj is an old hand with the urn selection process. Luckily, her urn contains the clue, a hint that lets her know exactly where the clue is, with the Tree-Mail dude. Taj realizes she has to fill in Sierra on the Four-Way Exile Alliance. Sierra is pleased, figuring she’s gone from the bottom to the top.
Tyson tender-loin. They’ve lost motivation at Timbira. “Today is just a relaxation fun-day,” Debbie says. For Tyson, relaxation-fun means fashioning his own loin-cloth and going out to tan the sides of his rump. Only Erinn is unamused. She’s coming off of a bad breakup and she’s lost the ability to talk to people. She’s isolating herself. This is sad, because Erinn ought to be able to enact a strategy similar to the one that’s made Sydney so popular over at Jalapao. Tyson figures getting to know Erinn would only prevent a tribal council freak-out when she’s booted.
I’m a frayed knot. Immunity Challenge time! It’s a bunch of running and collecting of puzzle pieces. Joe gets Jalapao out to a big lead against the sluggish coach. The tribe holds the lead until Sydney struggles with her knot tying. Timbira’s lead is slim as the puzzle-solving begins. It’s close, but Timbira wins, saving Erinn’s depressed hide. This will even out the two tribes.
Eye candy vs. Championships. “I think it’s the curse of the beans,” somebody observes as Jalapao heads back. A dehydrated Taj is eager to find the Idol. While Joe is certain that Sandy will get his vote, others are less positive, especially Taj, who suggests Sydney to the rest of the tribe. “We don’t need eye candy,” Taj says. “We need championships.” JT is undecided. And Stephen’s just confused, worrying that Sydney’s good looks may be part of her devious personality, especially when she says the thing she enjoys most about the game is being sneaky.
Tribal council. Sandy declares that she’s recovered from her early endangered position. Jeff asks Sandy how she feels being surrounded by so many younger, attractive people, so Sandy outs Sydney’s flirtation. Does Sydney flirt more with JT or Joe? This is a subject of conversation. Taj says Sydney’s the kinda gal men want to align with in general. Suddenly, all we’re talking about is Sydney’s hotness. Sandy warns that after the vote, a couple people are bound to be upset.
The vote. Sydney votes for Sandy. Sandy votes for Sydney. Why is nobody taking my opinion into account here? Keep Sydney! The tribe is looking out for me. The fourth person voted out of “Survivor: Tocantins” is Sandy. But who the heck cast a vote for Joe? Is that gonna be JT trying to boot his romantic rival? [No! It was Taj. How odd.]
Thoughts on the season so far?
Keep following your favorite TV Shows, sign up now for HitFix Blog Alerts and get the recaps for for television’s hottest shows in your inbox every day.