This weeks recap is brought to you by snakes, Mean Girls and the Good Guys!

Episode 15: DAY 32-33

Post-tribal: Kate, Conner and Kristie look so glum. How we all feel that Phoebe is gone.

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Also, they’re out of rations… how have they run out?! There’s no one on this tribe!

REWARD CHALLENGE

With the shock of Phoebe being voted out comes a long pause and silent pan to Kristie and Kate looking sad… so dramatic! Jono then drags out the news that they are MERGING. The celebrations are hilariously long, I can’t imagine what the group will look like when the winner is announced.

It’s the good ol’ Survivor Auction! $500 each and bids are at $20 increments. No sharing of money or food items. No potential Cirie/Erik moments!

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1st item: Salt and vinegar chips and a soft drink (gross), Conner gets it for $60. Jono then throws the whole ‘no sharing’ thing out the window when he allows Conner to give other 3 soft drinks to people. 2nd item: Chocolate cake and chocolate milk. Conner pays a whopping $440!! 3rd item: Mystery item and it goes $240 to Sam. A bowl of rice?! Nope, nachos! It’s Sam’s favourite meal. WOW; this guy needs to branch out more. 4th item: Another mystery and it goes for $220 to Sue – steak and chips! 5th item: A bubble bath; hello Parvati. Brooke gets in for $20. 6th item: A game advantage which Lee wins for $20. I’m surprised not more people went for this. 7th item: Spaghetti Bolognaise – Kate for $500. 8th item: Mystery which goes to Nick for $440. It’s another advantage and he’s not a happy chap. Jono tells them all that there’s nothing left to bid on and Magic Matt’s heart breaks!

Conner loves his $440 cake slice | Poor Matty misses out 😦 [Image credit: Channel Ten]

The newly merged Fia Fia tribe are back at the old Vavau camp and it starts with Flick’s evil glare. Her brain is ticking and she’s already planning on getting Conner out. He is a bigger strategic threat than Sam after all.

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Flick’s got her eye on you, Conner. [Image credit: Channel Ten]

Sue calls the Saanapu alliance a lalala sorority group and wants to ban together with Kate and Kristie to vote them out. It’ll be interesting if they can nab Kylie and Sam over to their side. I can definitely see Kylie siding with Conner; there is no way she would want to go forward with Flick and Brooke…. Or so I thought!

Lee reads his advantage. It is to stop one person from voting at a tribal council before the final 5. Not as powerful as a vote steal, but still an advantage nonetheless if the right person is chosen. Nick wants to drop his advantage in the well or burn it. It’s a clue to the hidden immunity idol just like he thought and he automatically knows where to look. Unfortunately Lee catches Nick searching in the palm trees, so of course Nick has to share it with him. He finds it! And they want to tell the tribe. Lee, you don’t have to tell everyone what you have. Keep it hidden y’all!!

El and Brooke make some friendship bracelets from some old pink skirt. Conner’s jealous Kristie got a bracelet and he didn’t.

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IMMUNITY CHALLENGE

Jono reveals the fancy individual immunity necklace. Hang upside down on horizontal pole for as long as you can and whoever’s last wins. I don’t think we’ve seen this version of a hanging challenge before!

Magic Matt’s out first. All the girls seem to be hanging upside down from their legs. Flick drops. El and JL fall out together. After 60 minutes Nick drops out. 75 minutes in and each person has to keep one hand off the pole; dirty Jono. Kristie swaps arms and is disqualified. Kate loses her footing and it leaves Kylie versus Brooke. Brooke wins the first individual immunity.

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Flick is really gunning for Conner since she tried to get him out 6 weeks ago! Nick has a plan to split votes with their 9 to cover all bases. 5 votes on Conner and 4 votes on Kate. If Kylie flips to Conner’s side, it’ll be 5-5 and on a revote Conner still goes home. Matt catches up with Lee and Sam. He tells them the whole plan to vote out Conner. Sam is not happy and claims he is not down with voting either Conner or Kate.

Kate, Sue, Conner and Kylie have a pow wow. They just need to draw in Sam and Kristie. Sue isn’t happy with the sorority chicks. Sam isn’t happy with Nick and approaches Conner to go chat alone. And in a great move Brooke follows the boys on their walk just to make sure they don’t go and try sneaking behind the girls backs.

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Conner just can’t catch a break! [Image credit: Channel Ten]

Kate wants to get the ‘good guys’ together. Is it awful that I don’t want the ‘good guys’ to make it to the end?! “Win if you can, lose if you must, but always cheat” – Rick Flair.

TRIBAL COUNCIL

Conner explains how there are so many likeable people left on this tribe, making everyone a target to win. Jono asks him if he thinks any one person is controlling the game and he can’t give a definitive answer. Jono asks Flick instead; she doesn’t know either, but he brings up the pink bracelets. This totally outs their alliance and it really was a silly thing to do. Don’t you love how Flick cops all the shit for the pink bracelets though?! You just can’t have a bit of fun on Survivor. It’s voting time and this is where it gets confusing.  Sue votes for Matt, Kate votes for Kylie and Conner votes for Nick. I’m a bit lost as to how or why this happened and if there was just a lack of communication. You have to give Saanapu some credit with so many people for weeks on end they have been able to vote strategically without screwing it up! Sadly Conner goes home in a split vote. I think he definitely was a threat to the majority, so it was the right choice. Conner-6, Kate-4, Matt-1, Nick-1, Kylie-1.

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Conner’s time is finally up. [Image credit: Channel Ten]


Episode 16: DAY 34-35

Flick gets the party started back at camp with Conner gone. Such a mean girl thing to do. Brooke in a confessional says Kate, Sue and Kristie are next to go, which is surprising as Kristie voted with Saanapu; I honestly don’t know what these people are thinking. Kate’s not ready to go home and she’s gonna fight, for her right, to STAY! You go girl!

AS374.PNGKate and Sue are not ready to give up yet. [Image credit: Channel Ten]

Home (shelter pic) renovations are happening at Fia Fia; who needs The Block?! Kate wants to have a genuine chat with a genuine person; that person is Kylie. Kate works the ‘good guys’ angle and Kylie also wants the ‘good guys’ with ‘good sportsmanship’ to stay together… who’s to say the ‘bad guys’ have bad sportsmanship though?!

To the supposed mean girls alliance (Flick, Brooke and El), Kate is a massive threat so it’s only understanding they target her. And then Brooke says “Dude, we won Survivor”. NO. You’re not helping your cause by saying things like that!

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Kate gets lucky and catches the ‘good guys’ Sam and Lee alone to explain the current hierarchy in the tribe. I find it hilarious that the boys need Kate to explain this caveman style in the sand. Sam comes to the realisation he needs to start playing the game. HALLELUJAH! They target Nick; I take my Hallelujah back! Sam says if they can get this plan to work it will be the greatest play in Survivor. And then I realise he’s actually never watched the show before, so I laugh for a good 30 seconds.

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The Saanapu sorority girls have a beauty salon going on and I start to gag. Lee, Sam and Kristie try and strategise and aren’t the boys lucky they have Kristie on side; she’s got some game in her. She knows she’s currently floating between voting blocks and it’s working.

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El, Flick and JL are pushing for Nick to vote for Kate, but bitter Nick still wants Sue out. And also, everyone loves Kate! She’s so amazing I wouldn’t want to vote her out either.

IMMUNITY CHALLENGE

Spin a ball around a track using centrifugal force. Last to keep ball rolling wins immunity. This is a treat to see and new concept of a ball challenge.

Sue’s ball goes like a rocket off the track. It would be so easy to lose concentration and it showed throughout this challenge. The sorority girls are out within 5 mins. Kate is out and she is pretty distraught. Magic Matty’s been quiet lately and things seem to be going well, until he starts speaking. El is trying to psych everyone out and it seems to work as her and Lee make it to the 1 hour mark. El wins immunity! Must admit, that was probably the most boring spectator challenge.

Kate really needed to win, but Brooke Dundee hands it to El. [Image credit: Channel Ten]

Brooke is 100% sure that Kate is going home! All girls are voting Kate, all boys voting for Sue. But little do they know Sam and Lee are jumping. Sam tries and gets Kylie to vote with him and talks about integrity and honour again. Kylie has a dilemma; does she want to look like a flipper to Brooke and Flick. Kylie takes Brooke aside and tells her about Sam’s plan to flush Nick’s idol. I am shocked! I did not expect that to happen. Brooke runs to Flick of course and they start calling Sam a snake. This is hilarious as it wasn’t even Sam’s idea in the first place. Sam has no idea what he has done and possibly screwed up Kate’s plan.

TRIBAL COUNCIL

Jono asks Kate if there is a way to play this game with honour and she hails yes. He then pushes Kate to announce who the majority alliance is and how the minorities are getting voted out one by one. Does anyone feel like Jono is forcing answers out of everyone outright? He doesn’t beat around the bush that’s for sure, but it’s just becoming the norm every tribal. I think it’s too much. Kate doesn’t think the hierarchy in Saanapu will change and wants the people who are feeling supressed to speak up and make their own decisions. Nick admits that he really does like Kate, but their games have not intersected. Sam outs Nick as a snake and that they are trying to create a group all about integrity; meaning they are voting for him tonight. Nick speaks up about people how not everyone is loyal here and has had blood on their hands at some point in the game. Lee is eye rolling at Nick’s speech and I am eye rolling right back at you Lee. Pretty sure Nick’s had to eye roll and all of Sam and Lee’s loyalty and mateship lectures.

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Kate is really trying to get those people who are unhappy in the core alliance to rise above and stand up for what they believe in. Somehow she does this in an inspiring way that is not annoying at all. She is precious. At the same time I am torn because I think Nick has been playing a hard game and I don’t want to see him go.

Time to vote and Nick plays the idol which he is happy to get rid of. As Nick’s name pops up you can see Matt’s reaction to why you would vote for someone who’s playing an idol anyway. The results are depressing and Kate goes home. She definitely knew it was coming. I just wish she would have outed the alliances a bit more on the way out, but that’s not how she rolls. Kate-6, Nick-4, Sue-2.


Episode 17: DAY 35-37

Surprise, surprise the old Saanapu gang are pissed off with Sam and don’t trust him anymore. Nick brings up the elephant in the room, which is himself. Sam can’t be bothered talking about it with Nick, who has already come up with 15 different revenge plots against him.

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Nick is bitter about being called a snake; and so what? Nothing wrong with a snake on Survivor, look at Richard Hatch. Can I just say that El seems like such an awesome soul and the glimpses we’ve seen of her, not that many, have shown her to be approachable and having great social skills. El takes Nick aside and man she would make a great counselor. Nick opens up about his feelings and he wishes Survivor would just be all rainbows and smiles. Unfortunately you are going to be personally attacked in this game. El tells him the girls have his back. Nick has a mini breakdown about finding the right balance between who he is in the game and real life.

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Nick Cesternino has a lot of feelings. [Image credit: Channel Ten]

REWARD CHALLENGE

Jono tugs on all the contestants’ emotions asking them what they miss most. Split into two teams of five, one at time to head down a water slide into the ocean and guide a ring along an obstacle course to the shore. There are 5 rings to collect and each member must toss a ring on to a peg. First team to land all 5 rings wins rewards – Letters from home.

Kristie sits out, but still gets to go on reward by choosing the team she thinks will win. I am baffled to why Kristie wasn’t picked as she’s pretty good in challenges. Blue Team: Matt, JL, Brooke, Sue, Flick. Yellow Team: Kylie, Lee, Sam, El, Nick. It’s all up to Nick on the last ring toss, and cue the slow, dramatic music. Yellow wins.

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Did anyone spot the dolphin? [Image credit: Channel Ten]

Jono brings out the letters from home and ‘good guy’ Sam asks if the other team can somehow have their letters too. Jono tells them they can swap their letter and give it to someone else. Kristie pipes up first which is completely fair as she didn’t compete in the challenge and opts out for Matt. Great move on Kristie’s behalf. El then swaps with Flick. And the charity man himself doesn’t even hint at swapping for anyone. Go figure.

Letter reading time:

MateShip | Lee’s Trees | Magical Tears. [Image credit: Channel Ten]

The reward winners arrive back at camp and wait for the others to approach them about it. Matt is so grateful for Kristie and wants to make sure she is rewarded in this game as well. It’s amazing how different Aussies react to these things compared to Americans. In the US Survivor you see people come back from rewards and rub it in everyone’s faces. I do enjoy seeing THIS type of Aussie mateship. Nick wants to get to the bottom of his relationship with Lee and Sam. He opens up to both of them and now Sam has heard both sides of the story he doesn’t know what to do.

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AWW, new BFFs! [Image credit: Channel Ten]

IMMUNITY CHALLENGE

Similar to the famous “Get a Grip” challenge the US has done numerous times before, castaways hang on to a pole for as a long as they can. Last one hanging wins immunity.

Here’s a timeline using pics:

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Congrats girls!! 6 hours on that pole. What a feat. Brooke makes a deal with Jono for a letter from home, ultimately giving immunity to Kylie. Brooke says she is 90% confident she’s safe at tribal and I shake my head. Don’t say that shit out loud, Brookie!

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In relation to the above movie reference, I’d like to bring up the whole “Mean Girls” label Flick and Brooke are receiving. I actually don’t even see how the edit has portrayed these two as mean girls at all. They have been fortunate to be in a position of power, whether it being from Saanapu winning challenges or the ridiculous Australian Survivor twists, and should not be misconstrued as them being “mean” (maybe a little devious). They’ve been able to secure themselves in a core alliance along the way (Matt and El, who has Lee) and gained trust in people like Nick, JL and Sam (pre and post swaps). Their social skills have been most prominent and you can’t discredit that, especially when we saw Kylie run to Brooke last episode. Even though WE know she’s at the bottom of that alliance, Kylie may not, as the girls have done enough to make her feel safe. I am also aware we don’t see everything that’s happened on TV, so need to be mindful. All power to them!

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Important message by Flick. [Image credit: Channel Ten]

TRIBAL COUNCIL

I’m just going to focus on the Sam v Nick thing here, and this is only going by what we’ve seen on TV… Sam expresses his true feelings about Nick that he is not deserving to be there over people like Kate. What does that even mean? We have heard many times over the years whether people are ‘deserving’ to be in the game. Anyone who makes it on to the show and makes the jury is well-deserving in my eyes. Nick responds to this perfectly saying “deserving is NOT a metric that you can use to measure if someone should be here… Survivor isn’t fair.” Was Natalie White deserving of her win in Samoa? Did JT deserve his landslide win over Fishbach in Tocantins? Did Franny deserve to be booted first, twice? There is no definitive answer as everyone chose their path, which ultimately ends in the position that castaway receives. As viewers of course we are going to judge and say someone isn’t deserving, but this is based on the edit we see. Sam said it quite vindictively and he just plain and simple dislikes Nick.

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You’re not the ‘good guy’ you think you are Sam (on this island), and I hope that you realise after watching back on this series that it IS OK to be the ‘not-so-good’ guy on Survivor.

Nick knows he’s going home so why not point out the pockets of alliances that exist. Brooke, Flick and El, Sam and Lee, and he actually points out that Matt is an outlier who thinks he’s in with the sorority girls. WOW. What a burn.

Nick vocally, but not maliciously, exclaims he’s voting for Sue. I don’t think we’ve seen such a vocal voting scene since Crystal Cox in Gabon! Jono asks if anyone has an idol and Nick stands up… to put a buff on. Lee does not look impressed. Jono says that next person to leave joins the jury and by the looks of Sam’s face I don’t even think he knows what that is.

16 years of waiting and Nick is geeking out so hard right now; he’s excited to have his torch snuffed! You played a good game, Nick Cesternino! I WILL MISS YOU THE MOST! Nick-7 Sue-3

Nick’s Ponderosa (Jury Villa) video

“NEXT TIME ON… AUSTRALIAN SURVIVOR!”: Only two episodes in Week 7, time for Channel 10 to drag it out before the finale.

ALL IMAGES USED IN THIS ARTICLE ARE COPYRIGHT CHANNEL TEN/ENDEMOL SHINE AND CBS. THIS IS A PERSONAL BLOG AND ALL VIEWS ARE MY OWN.


SURVIVOR DAN’S THOUGHTS

Dan

“This week did redeem itself as it was a good week of Survivor! However we did lose three great players who all deserved to still be there. This is Brooke’s game right now, shes totally calling the shots, and she would deserve to win. I loved watching the former Vavaus call out the ‘pink bracelets’, but still nobody is willing to break them up! My money would be on Brooke and Lee right now.”