April 04, 2012 07:07 PM by Ryan Haidet
Tonight’s episode proved one major element that has been hinted at multiple times on Survivor: One World — Kim Spradlin is a hardcore player. In a season filled with primarily stupid strategists who are letting others play the game around them, Kim has stepped up to the plate with her mind focused on the grand prize. When this season first started, the tribes were so strongly loyal to their sides of men vs. women, but Kim has been able — at least for now — to convince some of the guys to stick with the ladies. And her plan pulled off a nasty blindside tonight, which required lots of risky moves. Who was voted off in Jonas Otsuji’s footsteps to become the second member of the jury? Read on to find out!
For the Reward challenge, which was actually quite fun to watch, the 11 remaining castaways were divided up into two separate teams via a schoolyard pick. Since nobody picked Tarzan, he was immediately out of the running to win the Reward — a trip to the 7UP Oasis featuring a barbecue with burgers, steak, pie and other snacks. Plus, the winners would be given as much sparkly 7UP as they could possibly drink. Enticing, yes. But not as enticing as Casa de Charmin from Survivor: Panama — Exile Island.
The challenge was made up of three parts — the first of which involved a monstrously steep slide that sent the players plummeting to the sand below. Most of the contestants were able to land on their feet when they came off the slide. Leif, however, landed on his knees, elbow, shoulder, head, legs and head again before climbing to his feet.
Although the challenge was close, the team with Michael, Kim, Sabrina, Christina and Leif won.
After gorging themselves on all the goodies at the 7UP Oasis, Kim pulled Sabrina aside and started to set a new plan in motion. She told Sabrina that her goal is to get to the end of the game with her and Chelsea at her side by keeping the women together as a solid block. But to do that successfully, she also wanted to keep Troy on their side — for now. So her idea was to lie to Troy by telling him that Mike was plotting against him.
After a storm swept in back at camp, Tarzan was the focus of yet another fight. This time it was because he allegedly dismantled part of their shelter for firewood. When Chelsea gave him some attitude for his actions, he asked her if she dislikes him because of a problem she has with her own personal plastic surgeon. “I can’t believe he’s talking about my boob job. He’s crazy.” Seriously, Tarzan. You are delusional. This has to be phony. There is no way a man of his age lacks that much self-awareness. Don’t you agree?
Moments later, Kim started her swirl of deceit on Troy — and he bought it completely. It didn’t even seem like he doubted her claims one tiny bit as he sat in confessional in disbelief that Michael would target him. “He’s just an idiot,” Troy said. “That guy irks me, man.”
The Immunity challenge was divided into two parts, the second of which involved an extremely complicated puzzle with 60 pieces. Kat — who didn’t even make it to the puzzle portion of the challenge after losing in the first round — sat on the side and said, “This is too hard for me.” Priceless.
While Kim and Alicia nearly solved the puzzle, their final piece never seemed to fit right. This gave Jay — who was in dead last for most of the puzzle — to come from behind to win Immunity.
It really did look like one of the toughest puzzles the show has ever done. I give the crew a lot of credit with the challenges in this episode because they were both tons of fun to soak in.
Kim found herself in the power position by straddling two alliances — one with the women, the other with the new Salani tribe. “Troy is blinded by his dislike of Mike, so I’m using Troy to send Mike home tonight,” she said in confessional. Although her confidence was clear, Kim did express a bit of concern that Jay might spoil the whole situation if he learned the truth and spilled the beans to Troy.
Those wee concerns became far more realistic when Chelsea made a bonehead mistake at the shelter. In front of Christina and Alicia — two people not truly in Kim’s primary alliance — Chelsea told Jay they were going to vote Mike out next. After expressing his negative feelings about the women ganging up, Jay went for a walk — with Michael. When Kim got wind of what went down, she took off into the woods to find both of the men before her plan was ruined. As Jay started to explain what happened in the shelter with Chelsea rallying against Mike, Kim interrupted and said they needed to simply vote Christina out. And just like that, she saved her plan faster than they all went down the Reward challenge slide.
At Tribal Council, Kim’s plan worked well and Mike was blindsided out of the game. But more interesting was the first question Jeff Probst asked at Tribal: Who was genuinely worried they were the intended target for the night? Nobody raised their hand, to which Kim said there are clearly some people who believe they’re actually part of an alliance they are no longer a part of. When Probst continued to prod, Tarzan said they were all just playing him because they knew what was going on and didn’t want to reveal too much of their plan publicly or it might be ruined. “The game is afoot and that’s why we remain ambiguous and it’s our best bet. And therefore, you’re being played,” he said to a seemingly intrigued Probst.
But it seems Tarzan was also a victim of being played because he clearly wasn’t made aware of the plan to vote against Mike. He voted for Christina. Also out of the loop was Christina and Alicia because they both voted for Tarzan.
Kim is the clear leader here, but can she continue to play so hard without getting caught in her lies? It should be interesting!
What did you think of tonight’s episode? Do you think Kim is playing a good game? Who do you think is playing the best? Are you happy Mike was voted off? Sound off and leave a comment below!
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Images courtesy of CBS.