It was 70 degrees here today. I took my dogs for a 2-mile walk; I walked at an ordinary pace, I was fully hydrated, I was fully rested, and I was still a bit winded at the of my exercise.
Increase the temperature to 118 degrees, add a high dew point, take away my water and my sleep, and make me dig in the hot sand for an hour.
It is any surprise that three Survivors went down in one challenge?
Survivor couldn’t have known that this would occur or I do not think they would have ran the challenge. Clearly the three bags of balls were very well-hidden and the digging was much too labor-intensive in the Cambodia heat. This challenge seemed really intense for a simple reward challenge and I was shocked when the screen flashed that 45 minutes had elapsed. I can’t imagine we will ever see a challenge like this again.
Props must be given to the Survivor medical team, Dr. Joe, and the production crew. The medical team did an excellent job taking care of all three castaways and making sure everyone was safe. The entire staff on location game together in a tense and unknown time- even Jeff seemed nervous!
What would have normally been a boring strategic episode based on Alecia’s obvious boot turned out to be one of the most intense, edge-of-my-seat episodes I have ever watched.
What we learned during Episode 4:
- Caleb goes 100%, all the time- and he has my utmost respect and has earned his beast mode title.
- There is no doubt that we will see Caleb back on Survivor.
- Debbie had three confessionals, all compelling & character enriching. Debbie is going far in this game.
- A tribe swap is on the horizon, Peter can thank his lucky stars for this game twist.
- Peter isn’t defeated, one of the first quotes of the episode indicates that Peter won’t hesitate to take the brains out one by one at a tribe swap.
- If you want to inspire your daughters, don’t bully a young female on national TV.
- Cambodia is cruel and hot and makes me re-think my desire to become a Castaway!
Let’s get to the rankings!
* I don’t read spoilers
Pre-Merge Boot/Med Evac Order:
1. Darnell Hamilton (To Tang)
2. Jennifer Lanzetti (To Tang)
3. Liz Markham (Chan Loh)
4. Caleb Reynolds (Gondol)
I will be the first to admit that I wasn’t excited about Caleb’s return to CBS reality TV. His Big Brother game didn’t possess the qualities that I often look for in my favorite players. I was so pleasantly surprised with Caleb on Survivor and I wish he would have stayed longer. Having listened to his exit interview, it is obvious that a medical evacuation was absolutely necessary. Caleb spent five days in the ICU, had months of recovery when he got home, wasn’t able to work out and had to limit his time in the sun, and even spoke about his eyes having light sensitivity for 6 months after the game. In hindsight, Caleb shouldn’t have given the challenge his “all”- especially a simple reward challenge where the “reward” was salt & pepper. But, that’s not how a beast mode cowboy plays the game. The emotions shown on the beauty tribe during Caleb’s evacuation is a true testament to how well Caleb was playing the social game. I can’t wait to see Caleb on my TV again.
5. Alecia Holden (To Tang)
It is safe to say that the way Alecia was treated was incorrect. It was difficult to watch Kyle and Scot speak to her the way that they did. Alecia is a fighter, she doesn’t take any “lip”, and she seems to be the only Brawn who knows how to start a fire. That being said, her inability to back-down was most likely annoying to her tribe, her sand-kicking at the challenge was unhelpful, and she had absolutely no alliance. It was just time for her to go.
To Tang Tribe Rankings (Brawn)
3. Scot Pollard
I fully realize that the edit could be making Scot look worse than the reality. After all, Scot is tired, dehydrated, and mentally strained. However, I simply can’t root for him after the way he came off in this week’s episode. Also, I do not believe he is stronger than either Cydney or Kyle, and that is why I have ranked him last on this tribe.
2. Cydney Gillon
Cydney had a scary moment at the challenge, but thankfully recovered and managed to keep her strong position in the ‘in’ of her tribe. We caught a glimpse of her strong connection with Kyle during the challenge and it is obvious that both Kyle and Scot respect and trust her.
1. Kyle Jason
I realize that Kyle is mostly being referred to as Jason. I personally do not feel he has earned a last name calling yet, so I will continue to refer to him as Kyle.
Kyle’s edit this episode paints him in a bad light. However, the other tribes have not seen his behavior toward Alecia and Alecia is not on the jury to bad mouth Kyle. In my opinion, he is still in a very good position moving forward. And- he has the idol.
Chan Loh Tribe Rankings (Brains)
5. Aubry Bracco
Aubry is hanging in there. We know from episode three that she isn’t in immediate danger of being voted out from her tribe. That being said, I haven’t seen enough of her to move her out of last place which is where my gut is telling me she goes.
4. Joseph Del Campo
I was worried about Joe during the challenge, but he hung in there and made sure his partner Debbie was taken care of before she heat-stroked. I am interested to see which tribe Joe goes to next week and who he bonds with- if anyone.
3. Peter Baggenstos
Peter has not given up, plans to avenge Liz, and is certainly going to be kept around for his ‘pretty muscles’. Peter’s outlook is looking less and less gloomy by the minute.
2. Neal Gottlieb
What a great time for Neal to choose to sit out of a challenge! I want to see more of Neal- there is too little to truly gauge his position in the game.
1. Debbie Wanner
As I mentioned above, we heard a lot from Debbie this week. One of the first things Debbie does when she returns from tribal is tell Peter, “I couldn’t let it be you”. This statement is indicative of Debbie having the power in the tribe. And if she doesn’t have the power, she certainly wants to paint that image. The preview also alludes to Debbie being the power player of her tribe. I believe Debbie is on top, but a tribe swap can really shift the game. However, I hope Debbie continues to impress to the end.
On a side note, was anyone else surprised when Debbie spoke about her children? I assumed from episode 1 that she was without children because she claimed to be a ‘caretaker to none’. I really enjoyed seeing this side of Debbie.
Gondol Tribe Rankins (Beauty)
5. Nick Maiorano
The women on Beauty are tight and Nick is surely less likable than Tai. the tribe swap will be exponentially beneficial to Nick’s game.
4. Tai Trang
Regardless of where Tai goes next week, he should be safe. He is very likable and, better yet, he has an idol.
3. Julia Sokolowski
Julia has a tight alliance and is keeping a low profile. It is difficult to say how safe I think she is based on the unknowns of the tribe swap- but I do not see Julia as a target any time soon. I want to know more about Julia!
2. Michele Fitzgerald
The best thing for Michele’s game is to stay with Anna and Julia. The likelihood of these three women staying together is low, but Michele should be fine for a while.
1. Anna Khait
Anna still appears to me to be the most strategic woman on the tribe. Since the women have the power, Anna is still number 1. The beauty girls have had a minimal edit due to their success in the game so I am very interested to see how their Survivor fates are effected next week.
Just don’t be such a bully, Kyle.
There you have it folks, the fourth episode of Survivor 32 in the books! Check back next week for more Recaps and Rankings.
Until next time,