Things are winding down for this season of Survivor, but be assured that the strategic maneuvering is not done and over with. We have eight contestants left in the merged Yin Yang tribe and the Villains are the ones in control. They've stuck together and made it this far on their quest to oust the Heroes. The unlikely pairing of Russell, Parvati, Danielle and Jerri has been a force to reckon with and the final four spots seem to be theirs for the taking. Last time, the Villains sent Amanda to the jury and acquired a new ally in Candice. With their new friend on board the Villain band wagon, will our foursome ride this wave of success all the way to the end? Are Colby and Rupert doomed or do they both have a fighting chance to stay alive? This week, there will be two tribal councils which will send two people to the jury. Which two contestants have come to their end in this game? We'll answer that question and more by reviewing the latest episode of Survivor Heroes vs. Villains.
This episode begins with the contestants returning to camp after their second tribal council as a merged tribe. Colby and Rupert are extremely upset with Candice's decision to flip. They call her greedy and manipulative, among other things. The two remaining hero males know that they will be the next to go now that the Villains have firm control of this game and they're not happy about it at all. The next day, things really come to a head when Russell and Rupert get into a heated argument. Rupert criticizes Russell for lying to the Heroes and swearing on his kid's life in the process. Russell responds by saying he doesn't care about Rupert, using plenty of expletives to get his point across. Russell then goes further by making fun of Rupert's "good guy" image and sarcastically saying that Rupert thinks of himself as "The second coming of Christ". Rupert hopes that this exchange will show the other Villains how nasty Russell is as a person and why they shouldn't align with him. Russell adds his two cents in his confessional by saying that Rupert needs to get his tie dye ready because he's going home. This exchange shows how emotionally heated this game can become. Jeff Probst made a very good point in his blog this week when he said that Russell is becoming exhausted from playing this game and it's causing him to snap when even he would normally hold back. Keep in mind that this season started filming about a week or so after Russell's original season ended. He's had almost no time to detox from Survivor which may have contributed somewhat to his blowup here. While this is by no means a justification for his actions, it may explain why Russell continues to lose his temper so easily this season. Rupert also seems to be more emotional now that the game isn't going in his favor. He's upset that he's on the short end of the stick alliance wise, so he's lashing out in frustration. These two seem to be at each other's throats and it'll be interesting to see how they continue to interact with each other in the coming episodes.
We now arrive at the first immunity challenge for this episode, which is a rehash of a challenge from Survivor Fans vs. Favorites. Here, the contestants will have their arms strapped to a bucket (one bucket for each contestant) filled with a colored water like substance. The players must hold their arm up in one position for as long as they can without letting their bucket tip over and splash the colored water on them. If the bucket does tip, then that player is out of the challenge. The last person standing with their arm raised the longest will win individual immunity and can not be voted out at the next tribal council. As the game gets underway, Jeff brings out a covered food item one minute into the challenge and he says that he'll give it to any player who drops out of the challenge. Sandra and Russell immediately tip their buckets over and they both enjoy cookies and milk on the sidelines. Next, Jeff brings out some donuts and coffee for anyone who wants to quit the challenge. Colby accepts Jeff's offer and gives up his chance at winning immunity. The next offer from Chef Probst is a meal that consists of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, chips, candy, and milk. Danielle, Jerri, and Candice all quit the challenge in order to enjoy this latest meal. Parvati and Rupert are the only two people left in the challenge now. After an hour and ten minutes, Rupert slips and his bucket tips over. Parvati has won individual immunity and is safe at the next tribal council. It doesn't surprise me that Parvati pulled off the victory here. She won this same challenge back on Survivor Fans vs. Favorites, so I knew that she would have the stamina to come through and succeed on this one. Never underestimate Parvati. She may look innocent, but she's a master gamer through and through.
After the immunity challenge comes to an end, Jeff says that he has a surprise for everyone. Probst pulls a note out and begins reading it to the contestants. This note is a clue to where the next hidden immunity idol is stashed. After Jeff finishes reading this clue, the contestants return to camp. Once they get back home, everyone splits up and begins a frantic quest to be the first to find the idol. After much searching, Sandra finds the treasured idol. She's too nervous to carry it around with her, so she stashes it elsewhere in the jungle to keep it hidden. Meanwhile, Rupert has no luck finding the idol, so he comes up with a clever scheme in order to try and fool the Villains. He takes a rock and sticks it in his pocket, hoping that one of the Villains will look at his pocket bulge and think that he has a hidden idol inside. Fortunately for Rupert, one Villain falls for this ruse hook, line, and sinker. Russell sees the bulge and tells the other villains that they need to split the votes in order to oust either Rupert or Colby. I have to give credit to both Sandra and Rupert here. They both made very good moves that concerned the hiding (or lack thereof) of an idol. Sandra hid the real idol to keep the target off of her while Rupert pretended that he had one in order to get the villains to possibly target someone else for the voteoff, thereby giving him a chance to survive. Even though Sandra and Rupert are not master idol users like Parvati is, they both made good plays that will give them a fighting chance in this game. I could even see Rupert and Sandra reforming their old Pearl Islands alliance now that they both have an upper hand strategy wise. We'll have to keep an eye on these two.
Tribal council is looming near and strategy talk abounds as to who should be the next to go to the jury. Russell wants the villains to split the vote between Colby and Rupert in the event that either one of them plays an idol. Everyone seems onboard with this plan except for Jerri. Our black widow argues that Candice should go home next because if she's willing to flip on her original tribe, then that proves that she's a dangerous player who needs to be eliminated quickly. Colby and Rupert seem to be onboard with voting out Candice also, but both of our male heroes are still worried that one of them will be going home instead. It's pretty obvious at this point that a hero is getting voted out here. The question is which hero will it be? Well, once tribal council arrives, we get our answer. Parvati, Danielle, and Candice vote out Rupert. Colby and Rupert vote out Candice. We have three votes for Rupert and two votes for Candice. Only three votes remain. Our remaining villains (Russell, Jerri, and Sandra) all cast their votes to get rid of......Candice!!!!! Candice is the 13th person voted out of Survivor Heroes vs. Villains and she is also the fifth member of the jury. It looks like Candice's gamble didn't pay off as well as she thought it would.
Looking back at this season, I must say that Candice's overall performance as a player has really blown me away. Before this season started, I was almost certain that Candice would be one of the first individuals to be kicked out of the game. She was the odd person out on the Heroes tribe, she was extremely disliked by the fans on her original season, and I didn't think that anybody would want to talk to her, let alone align with her gamewise. She also exhibited such a nasty, negative attitude toward everyone on her original season and I was sure we'd see a lot of the same behavior from her this time around. However, Candice surprised me by acting very mature and being focused this season. She never really got past her oddball placement amongst the Heroes, but she interacted with them and played the game far better than I thought she would in the beginning. I give major props to Candice for doing so well. Now the question we have to ask ourselves is did the tribe make the right call in voting Candice out? I'm a little torn on this one. It made perfect sense for Rupert and Colby to vote her out since she betrayed them and her leaving means that they will stay for a little while longer. However, I think the villains made a bad call in getting her out. Sure, Candice is good at challenges, but she would have been very useful in taking out Colby and Rupert. Now that she's gone, it may be a lot harder for the Villains to get rid of the last two heroes standing. Ultimately, the Heroes made the right call in voting her out while the Villains made the wrong call. That's how I see it. Some people will say that Candice dug her own grave here by betraying the Heroes. I don't think so. As I said in last week's survivor review, I think that Candice's betrayal was a very reasonable move that showed her awareness of the end game. She couldn't beat any of the heroes in a final tribal council, so she had to join up with the villains if she wanted a chance at winning. Even though this move blew up in her face, I still feel that it was a necessary risk that she had to take. Many fans will forever criticize Candice for turning her back on the "good guys", but remember that Candice was never a good guy to begin with. She has always been a "villain" at heart, the difference is that she's more strategic and a lot nicer as a person now than when she played last time. Candice is not a perfect player and she should have owned up to her betrayal of the heroes rather than placing most of the blame on Sandra. But even with her faults, Candice has made a tremendous improvement in her approach to the game of Survivor. For that, I'll give her five stars. Candice wins the "most improved player" award of the season. Good job. :-)
As the players return to camp, Russell is not happy with the way the votes went down. He feels that the villains should have stuck with the original split vote plan to get rid of either Rupert or Colby. He blames himself by saying that he should've sat his alliance members down and told them all what he wanted them to do (there goes Russell's control issues again. Give it a rest, pal.). Russell is beginning to believe that he's not in control of his group and he wants to try and gain that control back. This incident here is a bit of foreshadowing for what will happen later on in the episode. Russell is obsessed with control and he wants it at all costs. You can see his strategic mind begin to unravel here. Now Russell is prone to making big time mistakes all in the name of "dominance". His desire to want control over everything will cause his strategic acuity to dwindle dramatically. Russell is about to prove to everyone that he is not as great of a strategist as he thinks he is. Stay tuned.
The second immunity challenge for this episode is upon us now. Our seven remaining contestants will dig for a peg (one peg for each contestant) in the sand and once they have it, they must manuever it through a table maze. The first five contestants to get their peg through the maze will move on to the next round which will be to use different shaped pegs to get to the top of a climbing wall. The first three contestants to get to the top of the wall will compete in the final round of the competition, which will be to solve a puzzle. The first person out of those final three to correctly solve the puzzle will win individual immunity and can not be voted out at the next tribal council. As the challenge starts off, Colby and Jerri are eliminated in the first round. Danielle and Sandra are eliminated in the second round. This leaves Russell, Rupert and Parvati in the final three fighting for immunity. All three of them start solving the final puzzle and it looks as if Rupert might win it. But then, Russell comes from behind and pulls off an upset. Russell wins individual immunity and can not be voted off at the next tribal council. Everyone else is at risk. Russell is feeling high and mighty now. He's got individual immunity and he truly believes that he's in control of this game. However, his desperate attempt to become the kingpin of Survivor may backfire on him very shortly.
As the yin yang tribe returns to camp, the strategy sessions begin once again. This time, the villains are convinced that Rupert doesn't have the idol. If he did, he would've played it at the last tribal council in order to save himself. The villains decide to vote out Rupert next. However, Russell has different plans. He doesn't like the way that Parvati and Danielle have taken control of the game, so he decides that he's going to lie to both of them in order to break the duo up. He tells Danielle that Parvati is after her and soon aferwards, he tells Parvati that Danielle wants her gone. Parvati wants to speak to Danielle about Russell's statement in order to confirm it, but Russell very rudely tells Parvati that she can't talk to her (because it would blow his cover, but he doesn't tell Parvati that). Parvati ignores Russell's threats and speaks to Danielle anyway. They both soon discover that Russell is trying to manipulate both of them so that they'll be at each other's throats. The friendship between Parvati and Danielle scares Russell so much that he comes up with a new plan, which is to vote Danielle off the tribe next. Russell gets Colby and Rupert to quickly agree to the plan. Parvati and Danielle are suspicious of Russell's actions and decide to speak to Jerri in order to ensure that the votes are still there for Rupert to go home. Parvati and Danielle tell Jerri to not change her vote no matter what Russell says to her and she agrees. Later, Russell talks to Jerri and he pretty much threatens her to vote Danielle out or else. Russell is being an idiot here, plain and simple. The idea to separate Parvati and Danielle is a sound one, but he's doing it way too early in the game and he's going about it the wrong way. Russell's obsession for dominance and control has caused his own allies to hate him now. What a dumb move by someone who proclaims himself to be a strategic genius. You know, I think Russell subconsciously sees this whole thing as some sort of warped love triangle. Parvati is the love of his life, but she loves someone else (Danielle) more than him. The jealous lover (Russell) must get rid of his competition (Danielle) so that he can force the object of his desires (Parvati) to love him and him only. I think that's really what's going on here. This isn't strategy on Russell's part, he's just jealous that Parvati is paying attention to someone else and not him. It's kinda creepy. Either way, Russell has pretty much ruined his chances at winning this game. He's angered all of the heroes. He's angered all of the villains now. He's alienated anyone that could cast a jury vote in his favor at the end. His volatile nature has really come out of the box and now, Russell's ship is sunk. He won't win this season, that's for sure.
We get to tribal council and things start to heat up. Danielle calls out Russell and is angry at him for trying to stir up things between her and Parvati. Russell fires back by saying that he wouldn't have done this if Danielle weren't trying to get Parvati out (this is a bold faced lie by Russell and no one's buying it). Danielle gets so upset that she begins to cry. To counteract Russell's lie, Danielle says that she's closer to Parvati than he thinks. Russell begins to smile because he realizes that Danielle has just outed her alliance with Parvati to all of the contestants and now, people are going to want to break that twosome up as soon as possible. However, there is a strong desire amongst the villains to get Rupert out as well. Who will be sent to the jury next? Will it be Rupert or Danielle? The votes get underway and we soon find our answer. Parvati, Danielle, and Sandra vote out Rupert. Russell, Colby, and Rupert vote out Danielle. The vote is tied. Three votes to get rid of Rupert and three votes to get rid of Danielle. Only one vote remains and it belongs to Jerri. The black widow decides to cast her vote to get rid of.....Danielle!!!!! Danielle is the 14th person voted off of Survivor Heroes vs. Villains and she is also the sixth member of the jury. Russell has succeeded in getting rid of one of his own allies for reasons of jealously. No words can describe how stupid Russell is for making this move. Russell is starting to make Coach look like a strategic genius, lol.
I was quite surprised to see Danielle get the boot here. For the past couple of weeks, I started to believe that Danielle could very possibly win this game. She was in the dominant alliance, but all of the heat was going to Russell and to a lesser extent Parvati. Danielle wasn't put in any kind of a negative light until this episode and had she made it to the end against Russell and Parvati in a final tribal council, I suspect she would've gotten the votes to win due to how hated Russell and Parvati are in general. Danielle truly had a great thing going, but it was ruined thanks to Russell and his childish jealously. Overall, Danielle did quite well in playing this game. She played in a similar fashion to the last time she played. She was in a major alliance and rode it all the way to the end. Last time, Danielle got to the final two, but didn't win. This time, Danielle didn't get as far, but played a great game nonetheless. Her most memorable moment this season was fighting Amanda for the note last episode. It showed she could be aggressive without being hated and that's one of the reasons why Danielle peformed so well in this game. Did the tribe make the right call in getting Danielle out? Again, Danielle's vote off is similar to Candice's departure in that the heroes (Colby and Rupert) made the right call in getting rid of her while the villains (Russell and Jerri) did not. Colby and Rupert had to vote out Danielle to stay alive in the game, but Russell and Jerri should've gotten Rupert out. Keeping Colby and Rupert is dangerous now because if either of them make the final three (or two), they'll stand a good chance of winning. Russell should've waited longer before turning on Danielle. He should've dealt with the more immediate pronlem of getting the heroes out. Same with Jerri. She probably wanted to break up the Parvati/Danielle alliance as well, but this was a bad time. I think the Villains are going to regret this move very much. Colby and Rupert stand a very good chance at winning this game now if they make it to the finals. However, there's one person who I feel is in the best spot to win and her name is Sandra.
After viewing this episode, I'm almost convinced that Sandra will win this. She's not being targeted, she's very likable, and she has a hidden immunity idol to protect her if she needs it. Now that Russell has stupidly destroyed his own alliance, Sandra has a great chance of making final three and winning. I think she might even be able to beat Colby and Rupert in a final jury vote, believe it or not. She's played more strategically than both of our remaining heroes and the jury might reward her for that. You never know. I'm getting a gut feeling that Sandra will win this game for a second time. She's in the best position possible to take home the million right now. We'll see what happens, though.
This ends yet another episode of Survivor Heroes vs. Villains. Only two episodes remain and we have six contestants left. What will happen? We'll find out in the coming week as this all-star season of Survivor comes to a close. Till next time.
I've finally started to watch the remaining episodes of Season 20 of Survivor, so I can write some more reviews. I still have a few older episodes to write reviews for, but for now, I'm plowing forward with episode twelve. This episode has an extra long review because there were two immunity challenges, two tribal councils, and two people voted off. The Yin Yang Tribe has eight contestants, but by the end, there will only be six. It's … more
I'm a 29 year oldwhoenjoys reviewing certainreality tv shows and scifi programming. I also post reviews on other topics every now and then as well. I enjoy being here on Lunch and interacting with … more
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