Thursday, October 21, 2010

Searching For Signal: #176 - “Survivor: Nicaragua” - Episode 6

For whatever reason, we don’t start out with the traditional “march of shame” as the losing tribe wanders back to their camp after having sent someone home. (Which means nothing happened that was the least bit juicy, because these producers will show us anything that’s minimally exciting.) Instead, it’s already the next morning at the Espada camp.

And Mother Nature is in a mood. Winds are blowing, tides are roaring, and people are running about looking dissatisfied and slightly concerned that Dorothy and Toto might drop out of the sky at any moment. Danny hobbles up to Holly, and fesses that he’s thinking of quitting the game. Holly looks at him as if she has no idea who he might be.

Holly in a sidebar: He needs to suck it up and finish the game. (This from the woman who recently spent an entire episode wallering in the sand and crying because she couldn’t deal with using dead leaves as toilet paper and just wanted to go home. Delusional much?)

Roll opening credits.

We’re still at the Espada camp, with Holly and Yve gathering firewood, both of them only holding a few twigs because between the two of them they only weight about 20 pounds. Yve: Why was I left out of the thing to send Tyrone home? Holly: We thought you were in an alliance with Tyrone. Yve: Are you crazy? Holly: Well, maybe you need to be more open and honest. (This from the woman who thought it was okay to sink somebody’s shoes in the lagoon while Gilligan and Mary Ann were building a hut.) And, oh yeah, Danny wants to go home.

Yve just looks at Holly like she can’t trust anything that ever comes out of Crazy-Eyed Woman’s mouth. Good, because Holly lost contact with reality a long time ago.

Cut to the La Flor tribe. Marty and Jill are sitting about, with both of them pretending that the younger members of their new tribe are starting to warm up to them. (They are not.) Jill in a sidebar: “They’d get rid of us in a heartbeat.” Probably so. But what’s more important to me? Both of them have spiky hairdos that scare me. You could lose an arm sleeping next to them.

Brenda in a sidebar, WAY over-confident and on the verge of me not caring for her anymore, speaking of who’s running the show in the La Flor camp: “It’s the younger tribe. Plus Jane.” We have the numbers. We’re going to vote 3 for Marty, 3 for Jill, and flush the Idol out. Then Brenda pauses to pose for the latest “Survivor Women Who Might Be in for a Big Surprise” calendar.

Time for a challenge, and both tribes march into the clearing. Jeff announces that it’s going to be an Immunity Challenge. (Really? It’s way too early in the episode for that. Something’s up.) Then Jeff startles everybody by revealing two Individual Immunity necklaces. Both tribes will be going to Tribal, and both tribes will send someone home. Uh oh. (The La Flor tribe pauses in their arrogance, their faces falling as they realize that their youthfulness and low body fat will not save them this time.)

Jeff explains. Each tribe will compete separately. Each person has to dig in the sand for these ring things, use a wood thing to flip the ring into a toilet (that’s what it looked like to me) strapped to their back, and then run to hang the ring on a post. First person to get three rings on the post wins Immunity.

In the second part of this very-complicated challenge, the winners from each tribe will then compete in a festive ring toss, with the winner gaining a Reward for their tribe. The Reward involves getting to be the first group at Tribal Council, where they send someone home, and then they get to eat a feast while the losing tribe sends their own person home. Survivors ready?

Espada is up first. I know this is really serious for them, but I’m rolling on the floor watching people run around with miniature toilets on their back and trying to flip a ring into the potty. (Jeff makes sure to holler out: “And Dan’s still getting nowhere.“ Jeff doesn‘t care for Danny. Danny doesn‘t care, period.) Stunning everyone, wild-eyed Holly wins.

Next up is La Flor, with more bouncing toilets as people realize it’s not all that easy to flip objects through the air and catch them with your backside. In another surprise, Jill wins. So much for the youngsters dominating this game. The kiddies all wander around in confusion, because they really expected all the old people to be dead by now.

Final part of the competition, with Holly and Jill hurling rings and trying to get them to catch on hooks. Jill wins again, but Holly is right there behind her. The La Flor tribe will be feasting and watching the other gang rip and tear at each other during Tribal.

Cut to the La Flor camp, where everybody is all happy and joyous. (Perhaps the MTV crowd hasn’t realized that they still have to send one of their own home.) There’s whooping and hollering and people doing group high-fives.

Brenda in a sidebar: “That was totally fake.” We are NOT family, and we don’t have all our sisters with us. This is the worst case scenario, with Jill winning Immunity, but “we’ll still vote someone out that we don’t want”.

Really? How are you going to do that? Marty and Jill both have Idols.

Cue Brenda and Sash in a conversation, showing that they don’t just hate the old people in the tribe. Sash: We’ll do 3 votes for Marty, 3 votes for Kelly B. And we’ll tell Kelly B that we’re voting for Jane. (Once again, they’re hating on Kelly B because of that leg of hers. The humanity has been sucked out of these people. Then again, I’m still watching the show, so I guess I’m part of the problem and not part of the solution. My bad.)

Brenda runs to tell Kelly B the lie about everybody voting for Jane. Poor Kelly B. She nods her head in agreement. Then Brenda runs back to wherever it is that she and her conscience can live with themselves.

Brenda in a sidebar: This is all a little complicated. You never know what Fabio will do. Then Brenda pauses to pose for the “Women of Survivor with No Soul” calendar.

Next we have a scene with Marty and Fabio. Marty tells Fab the he’s some huge chess grandmaster, having beat some famous guy twice. (Fabio sucks it all in, because he wouldn’t know a chess player from a coconut.) Marty: If you wanna win this game, you come talk to me. Then Marty strokes his own ego so loudly that birds fly away from nearby trees.

Fabio in a sidebar: The chess player thing “makes sense!” Marty is SO smart. (No, you’re just stupid. How did you manage to get on the plane that brought you to this island?)

Cut to the Espada camp, where everybody is really sad. Which I don’t really get. Yes, they don’t get to eat, and they have to send someone home, but the other tribe has to say audios as well. (They get to eat, which sucks, but that’s the only leg-up they have on you.) Holly is making a big production about “how close” she was to winning the Reward. No one really cares, because Holly still has issues with how to properly wear a bathing suit, and that’s more frightening than anything else in the jungle.

Holly in a sidebar: “I’ll have to vote with the younger tribe members. It’s going to be Dan or Yve.” Then Holly has to turn away from the camera while she takes a call from her home planet.

Next up, Holly and Dan are walking along with buckets, because there’s nothing else to do around here so you might as well wander around with empty containers. Dan has decided that he wants to stay after all. Holly just looks at him. Dude, you have got to make up your mind. Then she gets distracted by the fact that there’s actually sand on the beach. Who knew?

Benry and Chase, trying to decide between Dan and Yve. Benry: I’d rather take Dan with us further in the game. (You would? Why?)

Benry in a sidebar: “Yve has got to go.”

Chase in a sidebar: “I want to keep Yve.” I don’t trust Benry. NaOnka is the only one I trust. (I agree with you on keeping Yve. But NaOnka? What’s up with that? Nay Girl has some serious reality conflicts. Then again, who on Survivor doesn’t?)

Chase and NaOnka: They both want Dan to go. No hesitation.

Yve in a sidebar: “It’s going to be me or Dan.” Then she pauses and has to deal with yet another person running up and asking why her head seems so oddly-shaped.

Yve runs to NaOnka and Alina. Yve: I don’t want to go. Holly said Dan wants to go. If we make it to the merge, I know the old Espada tribe and I can help you out.

Alina in a sidebar, which she doesn’t deserve because she’s worthless: Yve knows the old Espada tribe? That’s the perfect argument to get rid of her. (No, it’s not. Yve can be your ally in all this mess. Seriously, is there a checkbox on the “Survivor” application form that says “I am incapable of rational thought. I will do stupid things because I can’t think ahead. And I have large breasts. Love me.”)

New scene with Danny snoozing away in the camp hut, obviously proving his worthlessness. Holly, Chase and NaOnka are standing about, watching his un-productivity. Out of nowhere, Chase states that he is not sure about sending Danny home. What the hell? The other two girls just stare at Chase. Why can’t people make a decision and just stick to it? God.

La Flor tribe, where Brenda is babbling to Jane: “In our plan, you just gotta vote for Marty.” Jane doesn’t bother with details like “what exactly IS the plan?” or “what’s in it for me?”. She just nods her head and then tries to figure out exactly what has happened to her hair that makes it look like road kill.

Jane in a sidebar: Marty and Jill have been conniving against me since Day One. (Not really. Perhaps the better statement would be “I’m going to jump on any ship that will get me past the next Tribal Council. Because I’m from the sticks, and I cackle at things that aren’t really funny. I need help.”)

Sash and Fabio in a confab, which is really a stretch because Fabio still hasn’t even realized that the game has started. He thinks they keep going to the beach to look for clams, not to actually win competitions. Sash: “We need to flush the Idol. 3 votes for Marty, 3 votes for Kelly B.” Fabio: “What?”

Fabio in a sidebar: “What?” I want Marty to stay.

Sash in a sidebar: This Fabio thing? Something could go wrong.


Scene with Sash, Fabio and Marty. Sash and Fabio (well, really just Sash, because Fabio is still confused by things like daylight and wind) are trying to convince Marty that Jane is the target. Marty nods, his porcupine hair slicing the roof of the hut into shreds.

Marty runs to Brenda. “So it’s Jane?” Brenda nods wisely, then pauses to pose for the “Survivor Women Who Will Eventually Trip Over Their Own Lies” calendar.

Brenda in a sidebar: “It all depends on Marty playing the Idol.” (Ya think?)

Sash runs to Brenda: Fabio’s not sure about voting Marty out. (To be fair, Fabio’s not sure a lot of things, like clouds and miniature golf.)

Marty in a sidebar: He feels like Jane’s a lock, so he’s not going to play the Idol.

Time for the La Flor Tribal.

First there’s a bit of general chit-chat, then Jeff goes after Marty, concentrating on him being over-confident and showing everybody the Idol. Marty tries to put a spin on it, saying he did it for “trust”.

Brenda: “He’s trying to make it more noble than it really is.” (Marty turns and glares at Brenda like she just did something offensive with a crucifix.)

Jeff to Jane: “Do you feel safe?”

Brenda again: “She has to worry about Jill and Marty voting her out.” (What? Why’d she go and say that? Is she trying to unnerve Marty and flush the Idol? Not sure.)

This leads to a heated discussion between Brenda and Marty, with Brenda showing that she can be creative with the truth and Marty showing that he really thinks he’s just the greatest thing in the world. At the end of this mess, Marty turns to Jane and whispers “vote Brenda”. Jane whispers back “who the hell is Brenda?”

Time to Vote. Everybody traipses off to do their thing. Then Jeff: Anybody want to play an Idol before I reveal? Everybody turns to look at Marty, including several natives walking by on the beach. Marty just sits there. Okay, then.

3 votes for Marty, 3 votes for Kelly B (this was planned), and 2 votes for Brenda (those would be coming from Marty and Jill). We have a tie.

Jeff: Okay, we’re voting again. Marty and Kelly B can’t vote.

1 vote for Marty, and then it appears that everybody else voted for Kelly B. She’s gone.

What just happened? These fools voted to keep Marty? And he still has the safety of his Idol? Not a smart move here, folks.

Time for the Espada Tribal.

Jeff spends a long time torturing the Espada tribe about the La Flor tribe getting to chow down on food while they have nothing. (Jeff has a bit of an evil streak in him.) Then Jeff gets down to business. To Dan: You okay with going home? Dan: No. I want to stay more than anything in the world.

Yve: He’s saying that now. Back at camp, he won’t shut up about wanting to go home. (Which is true.)

Jeff to Dan: Aren’t you a liability in challenges?

Dan: Nope.

Yve: Yes, he is.

Jeff to Dan: Why not send Yve home?

Dan: We should. She’s arrogant.

She’s arrogant? Oh no. Sparks fly between Yve and Danny. She is intelligent and ably defends herself, he’s just an idiot with an unjustified ego. He comes off looking really bad, but Alina and Benry (I don’t trust either of them) actually come to Danny’s defense. Something’s in the air, and I don’t like the smell of it.

Time to vote, and that “something” becomes clear: Yve is voted out.

Jeff: Based on the vote, the tribe appears unified. Based on what I heard? Not so much.

Roll end credits.

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