March 20, 2013 06:30 PM by Ryan Haidet
The fallout from Brandon Hantz’s historic meltdown poured into the start of this week’s episode of Survivor: Caramoan — Fans Vs. Favorites. When Bikal was back at camp, Corinne compared Brandon to Mel Gibson and “any other crazy person.” Cochran was pleased, too. “It’s comforting to know that Brandon was able to successfully fly out of the cuckoo’s nest, and now we’re just left with Phillip.” Speaking of the self-proclaimed “Specialist,” Phillip turned the moment into motivation as he high-fived his entire tribe while telling them they have way more strength than the Fans now that Brandon’s disharmony is gone. But just because Brandon was outta there didn’t mean the tension left with him because Phillip was on a new mission to oust Corinne. He called it “Operation Thunderdome.”
“Drop Your Buffs”
Despite Phillip’s confidence that Bikal was way stronger than Gota, those tribal lines were quickly erased. As the two tribes — which were initially divided as “Fans” vs. “Favorites” — gathered for what they probably anticipated would be a Reward challenge, they were all surprised as Jeff Probst announced they were switching tribes. Thank goodness! I hope this new dynamic really boosts our chance to see actual strategies this season with deeper glances at some of the players we’ve barely been given the chance to know. Hello, Julia! The teams were randomly divided when they were each given an egg filled with colored goo. Those who splattered purple joined Bikal, those with orange landed with Gota. Probst then revealed they each had a new bag of rice and flint to help get them through the end of the game.
- New Gota (three original Gota — highlighed in orange; four original Bikal — highlighted in purple): Eddie, Reynold, Sherri, Andrea, Malcolm, Erik and Brenda
- New Bikal (four original Bikal — highlighted in purple; three original Gota — highlighted in orange): Corinne, Phillip, Cochran, Dawn, Michael, Matt and Julia
Dishing Tribal Dirt
It didn’t take long for some castaways to dish all the dirt to their new tribemates. At Gota, Reynold and Eddie didn’t keep any secrets about their feelings regarding Sherri. They told Malcolm and Erik everything about how she has been targeting them since they landed at the beach despite their constant, hard work. After Reynold asked both guys if they would like to join he and Eddie to vote Sherri out, Erik was a tad skeptical. He was actually getting a used-car-salesman vibe from Reynold that made him a bit uncomfortable.
Meanwhile, Sherri dished all of Gota’s dirt to Brenda and Andrea. That information was kept secret for long as Andrea rushed to Malcolm and the two talked about all they heard from the original Gota members. After laughing about the situation a bit, Andrea suddenly asked Malcolm if he had found a hidden Idol, which he adamantly denied despite having the damn thing tied around his wrist. While Malcolm seems to think it’s smart to hide his secret by not hiding it at all, I think it’s way too risky when Reynold knows exactly what a hidden Idol looks like.
Love With “The Gay”
At Bikal, Corinne was thrilled to have Michael aboard their team — who she repeatedly identified as “the gay” — but was disappointed she wouldn’t be able to align with “the gay” because she wasn’t going to flip on her allies. Phillip, on the other hand, hoped to spark some trust with Julia because he felt she’s a smart person — not as well-educated as himself, but smart nonetheless. He was really pushing to get her to flip so she could join their side and give them more strength in numbers. But Corinne hated that idea, labeling Julia is a boring player at one point. She felt like every move Phillip was making proved he was just a thoughtless dope. It even raised doubt in Corinne that Phillip was ever a federal agent. “What cases did he crack?” she asked in confessional. “Is that the reason our country is such a mess? Like, honestly?”
After performing absolutely horrible in the challenge, the new Bikal tribe returned to camp having to face Tribal Council. As Phillip held yet another motivational speech, Corinne was totally irritated because she was tired of his crazy ideas. Based on the teaser for this episode and the budding tension between Phillip and Corinne, I expected one of the two to become the prime target. But that wasn’t the case whatsoever.
Strategies were extremely confusing as it seemed very apparent that Julia was going to be voted out next. Corinne and Phillip were both — despite their differences — campaigning against Julia. Phillip even told Matt and Michael they needed to vote against “the girl” before adding extra nonsense to the mix with more Stealth-R-Us crap.
Done deal, right? Julia’s fate was sealed? Not quite. After the four original Bikal members (Phillip, Cochran, Dawn and Corinne) gathered on the beach, a new idea hatched — voting against Matt. Huh? It did seem like the idea came out of nowhere, which I blame on shoddy editing/storytelling because so much of the episode is focused on Phillip’s eccentricities instead of strategies. For some reason, the foursome found themselves concerned that one of their three new tribemates — most likely Matt — had found a hidden Immunity Idol. So, by voting against him, they would either flush out his Idol or get him out of the game.
And that’s exactly how it went down. Since Matt hadn’t found the Idol, the foursome easily voted him out. This elimination is extremely disappointing for me because I think Matt had a lot of potential to make the game interesting. At least I know something about him. Does anybody know a thing about Julia? Nope.
Before Matt was booted from the competition, Tribal Council primarily focused on Corinne as she proudly announced she would ditch members of her original alliance to team up with people like “the gay.” We also had to watch everybody unleash a childish laugh at Cochran when he said he didn’t think he could penetrate the newbies on their tribe. Penetrate. What a terrible word to use with such immature minds, Cochran.
What are your thoughts on tonight’s episode? Were you surprised Matt was voted out of the game? Are you tired of Phillip and his Stealth-R-Us or do you find it all to be entertaining? At this point, who do you think is most likely to win the $1 million prize? Sound off and leave a comment below!
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Photo Credit: CBS