It’s safe to say that many viewers had a similar reaction at the end of this week’s episode of Survivor: Game Changers. It may not be exactly the same, but one way or another, it probably went like this:
Every episode so far has been full of twists, and this week’s episode was certainly no different. At Mana, Brad made sure that Tai was not too upset about having to vote off his friend Caleb, which he wasn’t. Nuku and Mana won the reward after Troyzan stumbled at the end for Tavua.
Things got really crazy at the immunity challenge. The challenge was difficult enough, as it started with four tribemates from each tribe blindfolded. The twist was that whichever tribe came in first place would win immunity…and only that tribe. Yep, that meant that two tribes went to tribal council. Furthermore, the two tribes would be there together and ultimately vote off one person.
At tribal, there was a whole lot of whispering and talking and strategizing between tribes (and even more of it off camera). Ultimately, Tai was coerced into playing his newly-found immunity idol and played it for Sierra after J.T. inexplicably told Brad that his tribe was planning on voting her off. Her votes were nullified, leaving Mana’s votes which sent a shocked and stunned Malcolm home.
Let’s break things down:
For as much grief and flack that Tai gets, he took a huge risk in playing that immunity idol for Sierra. Yes, the move made more sense after J.T. told Brad that Nuku was targeting Sierra. However, it was still a big move, and it definitely put Tai in good standing with his tribe. The question is, how long will that good standing last?…
Nuku jumped out to a huge lead in the immunity challenge, and it was entirely due to Jeff Varner. Although physical challenges aren’t usually his strong suit, he proved himself in this challenge. One tribe member had to guide four other blindfolded tribe members towards towers with buckets of water that also contained a ball. Varner was the caller and immediately proved to be more effective than Brad and Cirie. Although Varner was narrowly defeated at the very end of the challenge on the ball maze, he still proved his value to the tribe.
Once again, Ozzy crushed it in the physical portion of the challenges. He also continued his fishing prowess and survival skills at camp as well. Ozzy flew past Tai and J.T. in the first portion of the reward challenge where the castaways had to balance a ball on a stick that gradually increased in height.
Ozzy continues to occupy his role as the alpha male of the Tavua tribe.
Soon To Be Snuffed:
Despite her belief that she is one of the stronger players in this game, Debbie seems to be becoming more and more of a wild card each episode. She is a nice person, but ultimately it was her volatility that got her voted off of Kaoh Rong. Things have started out OK, but it seems as though she is slowly heading down that path again.
It’s no secret that J.T. wants Sandra voted out, and frankly, that makes a whole lot of sense. However, it probably would have been wise to hold off on that plan until next tribal council they are in and keep the Nuku tribe whole.
Instead, J.T. made a huge mistake at tribal council. The tribes spent an enormous amount of time mingling and strategizing with each other. While that was going on, J.T. flat out told Brad that Nuku was planning on voting out Sierra, perhaps as an attempt to change Mana’s voting plan. Once that happened things took a whole new turn. Tai played his idol for Sierra – nullifying her votes, Mana voted out one of the Nuku tribe (Malcolm), and J.T. became public enemy number one in the Nuku tribe.
J.T. has some explaining to do…
Yes, Troyzan has an immunity idol. No, it does not mean he is no longer the most targeted member of the Tavua tribe. He was given a pretty decent lead in the reward challenge by Ozzy, who flew through the first part. He even had an early lead over the other two tribes as he tried to knock down targets.
However, Troyzan couldn’t finish, as Malcolm and Brad, respectively, were able to make a comeback for their respective tribes. Troyzan knows that he is at the bottom of the proverbial pecking order, and his struggles in the reward challenge certainly didn’t do him any favors. This will likely continue for the next few weeks.
Next week, things get really interesting in the Mana and Nuku tribes. Debbie is becoming more and more volatile for Mana, and Nuku will be looking for answers following a tribal council that saw one of their own have their torch snuffed out.
Survivor: Game Changers airs Wednesday night at 8:00 pm ET/7:00 pm CT on CBS