Pdawg’s thoughts on Survivor: Episode 5

Let me start off by apologizing for missing Episode 4 – the PVR was having some issues and I never did get to see the show. Thankfully, every episode starts off with a recap so here’s what I know about Episode 4…

• The cross-tribe alliance between Taj and Brendan continued to gain strength as Taj brought tribe-mate Stephen in to the mix. Brendan was supposed to add his Sierra but he didn’t get a chance to chat with her before the reward challenge. Sierra was sent to Exile Island with Taj where she learned about the cross-tribe plan that would see her, Taj, Stephen and Brendan in a position of superior power when the tribes merge…she liked it.
• Coach and Erinn continue to battle each other in Timbera.
• Sandy continues to annoy Jalapao.
• Tyson continues his Jekyll and Hyde routine – funny guy one minute, sinister the next.
• Jalapao loses the immunity challenge and the crazy Sandy goes home as predicted here.

Now, on to Episode 5…

With Sandy gone, everything is even. Six players left on each tribe. Time for things to get interesting. The one thing I can say at this point in the season is that there truly isn’t one likeable person in the game. Other than Coach, there really isn’t anyone all that memorable (good or bad) either. That said, Episode 5 was the most intriguing and interesting so far.

To kick things off, we get to see our young Woody Allen-like character played by Stephen (the Ivy League, New York Jew) scratching the back of Taj – the African American wife of NFL legend Eddie George. Taj moans with delight as Stephen scratches her back and he says, “I’ve never made a woman make sounds like that before…” CLASSIC!

Stephen and Taj cement their burgeoning relationship when they work together to find the hidden Immunity Idol at Jalapao camp. Taj, ever the schemer, directs Stephen to hold on to the Idol as everyone expects her to have it, nobody suspects he would have it, and, most importantly, he has pockets. Brilliant!

What Taj doesn’t know is Stephen wasn’t born yesterday, and as far as he’s concerned, he who holds the Idol, uh…holds the Idol…umm and therefore, uh…has the power. Right!

At some point there’s a reward challenge and Jalapao continues their winning streak. They win a trip to the Charmin Café where they get to gorge themselves on muffins, pastries, cake, coffee and juice. They also get to use a “modern toilet” with all the Charmin T.P. they can plough through. As a marketer, I have to commend Charmin on their excellent product placement, but shouldn’t the reward have been something like chilli or egg salad sandwiches to show-off the attributes of the product? Just saying.

At this point Brendan is once again sent to Exile, but this time he brings young Stephen with him to help further develop the cross-tribe alliance. Tyson, who appears to be a lot smarter than he looks, smells a rat and comments on the fact that Brendan is getting very cozy with certain members of Jalapao…he and Coach begin their anti-Brendan campaign back at camp.

At the immunity challenge, the tribes compete in Survivor’s version of the game “500” – the one were players try to catch balls catapulted in the air. Jalapao’s JT gives it is all, including one of his teeth, as he almost single-handedly beat Timbera. In the end, Spencer showed his lack of tenacity by letting Tyson easily catch a number of balls leading to the Timbera win. JT, tooth in hand, is not impressed with Spencer’s effort…say goodbye.

Tribal Council was uneventful as Spencer, the youngest player to ever play the game, is sent packing.

Looking ahead to Episode 6, we can only hope that the four-player, cross-tribe alliance stays intact until the merge as this would be a Survivor first – and probably just what the producers had in mind when they changed the rules around who goes to Exile Island. If the alliance lasts one more week, they should make it to the merge. The problem is Tyson is on to Brendan and Stephen is thinking about ditching Taj now that he has possession of the Idol…let the back-stabbing begin.

The scribe has spoken…

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