May 04, 2011 07:31 PM by Ryan Haidet
Tears flowed and sweat dripped on tonight’s episode of Survivor: Redemption Island. It started with the 10 players still alive in the game being treated with a visit from their loved ones — but this event brought a twist at Redemption Island. Far better than that moment was the Immunity challenge where the castaways struggled to claim victory in 110 degree heat. Tonight’s episode also continued to prove why Boston Rob deserves to win the whole shebang!
Gotta dig the product placement. Sprint was the bearer of good news as a smart phone left at tree mail delivered messages from loved ones to the castaways at Murlonio’s camp and Redemption Island. As they all huddled around the phone to hear their special messages, they couldn’t stop from shedding a few tears in the process.
Unlike previous seasons, I felt like this moment just didn’t hit me in the heart. It doesn’t even remotely come close to the moment with Taj on Survivor: Tocantins when she found out her husband was there. However, I will admit that the whole thing would have been eons stronger had Matt’s video come from Jesus himself.
The duel at Redemption Island was extremely boring. It simply challenged (if you can even say that) the four players to break a series of tiles by tossing a heavy ball on the course. Not a single ounce of action or suspense. Compare it to the exciting level of watching a group of children compete in a bean-bag toss at a school carnival. Got my point?
Mike finished the challenge first with Matt and Ralph right behind. That left Steve in last place and out of the game for good. After he placed his buff in the urn and left the arena, host Jeff Probst brought out everybody’s family member. Mike had won the opportunity to spend the afternoon with his own mother since he came in first place during the duel. But he had two different options. He could sacrifice his family visit to allow his mates on Redemption Island — Matt and Ralph — to spend time with their loved ones. Or, he could sacrifice his visit so the remaining six members of the Murlonio tribe would have the time with their visitors from home.
After explaining how his choice was directed by God, Mike gave up the time with his mother so the Murlonio tribe — comprised of the original Ometepe six responsible for destroying Zapatera — could have the time with their loved ones. Probst was shocked. He couldn’t believe Mike made that choice. It was almost like rewarding the enemy. In all honesty, there was no other decision he could have made. If he does get back in the game, he needs to have every positive aspect on his side. There are only eight days left in the game at this point. He will have the time to see his mother back at home in a tad more than a week. Duh. Who wouldn’t have done the same thing? Need I remind you of the Cindy car curse decision? Don’t share the goods you create hard feelings.
Loved Ones Visit Camp
Back at Murlonio’s camp, the six players were thrilled to have their loved ones by their side. Natalie was especially happy because she’s never left her mother for such a long period of time. Phillip, on the other hand, said his sister motivated him to continue to dominate the game. Meanwhile, Boston Rob took his own sister aside and explained his entire strategic plan to her. He even received a special gift from home — a shirt with Amber and his daughter on it that says, “Love you Dada.”
It’s not fun walking up a long series of steps when it’s really hot outside. Blech. But it’s excellent to watch on television. For the Immunity challenge, the final six had to use a series of puzzle pieces to complete the tall staircase. The first competitor to complete the staircase and climb to the top would win Immunity. As the long challenge pushed on, it came down to Boston Rob, Grant and Andrea. Boston Rob was clearly struggling as his legs wobbled with each step toward the end of the competition. He was able to fight through the pain and beat everybody else to the top in 110 degree heat.
Once he won, he dropped to the platform and let out a series of moans. With his shoes kicked off, Boston Rob was trying to cool down by pouring water all over his body. Probst, who was sitting at Boston Rob’s side, asked if they needed medical to step in. Boston Rob refused that suggestion and was helped to his bare feet. Still with noodle-like legs, Boston Rob could hardly stand up and nearly collapsed to the ground.
He gained his composure a short time later and happily claimed the Immunity necklace.
The Next Target
Once the Murlonio tribe returned to camp, they had to start figuring out a plan on who to vote off next. They had an easy pass for most of the season by targeting their enemies from Zapatera. But now, they had to face each other. Boston Rob concocted a plan to take out Andrea since he considers her a threatening player.
But as their scheme was ready to be put into action, Phillip started irritating everybody once again. Phillip still felt confident in his safety. “I could be wrong, but I’m not concerned about going home today,” Phillip said in confessional. This is when he admitted that he’s painted himself as the villain this season so everybody would want to take him to the final vote — since nobody would likely want to give him the $1 million prize.
At Tribal Council, Probst brought up the point that Phillip made earlier this season that he didn’t mind being at the bottom of his alliance — now it’s at the time when his place at the lowest level in the tribe really matters. After he defended himself, the voting began. When Probst revealed the votes, Phillip was spared from elimination once again as Andrea’s torch was snuffed.
“Tricky, tricky,” Andrea said as she walked out of the game. She walked away into the darkness to join Matt — her former love interest — on Redemption Island. But will he be happy to see her? Or will he confront her for betraying him twice? Et, tu Brute?
Image courtesy of CBS.
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