Previously on Australian Survivor the final twelve met Jonathan on the top of a hill where they learnt that they had (finally) made the merge. Despite having the numbers, David decided it would be a good idea to mind-fuck the outnumbered Vakama 2.0 tribe members. After being eliminated early in the reward challenge, he told Brooke and AK how he was at the bottom of new Mokuta and that he should be able to pull Zach over with him to give themselves the new majority. In actuality though, he was all in with Moana and the duo decided now would be the perfect time to get rid of Locky. Since Queen Shonee won the first immunity challenge like the damn boss that she is. At tribal council Locky desperately urged everyone to make a move and kick things off with a blindside, which sadly came to fruition. Just against him as he was booted from the tribe to become the King of the Jury.
The next day Jacqui was whipping up some breakfast and offering to deliver it to David in bed, who we learnt is well and truly falling apart from a chesty cold and a spider bite on his butt check. Which sadly wasn’t shown to us for proof.
Meanwhile by the fire Moana was congratulating Tarzan and Jacqui on the fact that they essentially secured themselves a place in the top seven. She then approached David and Sharn to congratulate each other on taking control and keeping their secret alliance alive. On the flipside, Brooke and Shonee were feeling disappointed to find themselves on the outs, though being the icon she is, Shonee encouraged them to be resilient and positive. Not feeling positive though is their ally Harry, who was back at camp with the Mokuta seven, seething about David and Zach’s treachery. This awoke the ol’ dirty in Harry, who vowed to take his revenge.
Speaking of revenge, David told us that his plan for All Stars has always been about playing a bold game, and taking revenge on anyone that wronged him in his original season. And now Harry is the last name on his Arya Stark list. Remember when Shonee had a revenge list? A list that she efficiently completed in three episodes. Like a damn icon. But enough about the superiority of Shonee, Moana was gossiping with Sharn, Lee, David and Jacqui by the well, telling them that Harry was arrogant about having taken David out on their previous season. While Harry watched on from behind some trees. Continuing to display her epic social game, Moana yelled out to him and told him to show himself and that since they are just doing washing, he is welcome to join them.
Oh and David did some bad math, sharing that getting rid of Harry was critical to his final tribal council, given Harry has currently played 82 consecutive days – which is untrue, given he was voted out one day before the end of a season – and if he makes it to the end, he can say that he played for 84 consecutive days. Which again, is wrong since he was also voted out. Plus, Lee and Sharn played 55 and 50 days in their OG seasons and genuinely can say that the days moving forward are consecutive, given they were never voted out. But whatever.
Fully aware of how well David has been playing, Harry pulled Shonee, Brooke and AK aside to try and find a way to weaken him. Given he has successfully surrounded himself with buffers, the group decided to get rid of one of the weaker players and as such, decided targeting Jacqui would be their best shot. With that, Harry and AK got to work trying to pull Zach and Lee to their side. Harry handed over a banana to Zach before launching into the pitch and while Zach agreed that he was open to the idea, he also wanted to play smarter this time around. With a semi-committal, Harry approached Lee and well, I just feel like Lee is interested. But maybe I am wrong?
My love Jonathan made an early return for the immunity challenge, which Harry identified as the final immunity challenge from last season as he walked in. But this time, with three sets of stumps to balance on – each smaller than the one before – while holding two sandbags up via ropes. After a short moment of struggle AK became the first person to drop from the challenge before Moana opted to step out, followed closely by Queen Shonee. After 15 minutes Zach fell off his pegs, followed closely by Sharn and Tarzan. The remaining castaways then transitioned to a skinnier peg, which caused Jacqui to drop after 45 minutes in the challenge. The final four each made it to the smallest pegs, with them quickly forcing David to drop out. He then used his time on the bench to suggest to Sharn that should Harry win immunity, they need to get rid of Brooke instead. After more than 90 minutes however, the pain became too much for him and he dropped out of the challenge. He and Shonee started throwing out options moving forward, agreeing that taking out AK and Brooke may be their only hope. However the latter wasn’t an option, given Lee dropped from the challenge and handed her immunity.
After popping immunity around her shoulders, Jonathan announced that they would not be going back to camp and would instead need to scramble on the way to tribal council. With that, the two factions split up by torchlight and got to work identifying their targets. Mokuta quickly locked in their vote for Harry, with a couple of dummy votes on AK just in case. Meanwhile the underdogs of former Vakama were still hopeful that they would be able to convince Lee and Zach to flip to them to get rid of Jacqui. Brooke and Shonee begged for them to be honest with them, asking if there is any chance of them making a move. And given Lee played a minimal game in his first go around, the former cricketer was more than keen to prove himself. And you know, build a resume. Lee and Zach mentioned being nervous about how Dave would react, which gave Harry the chance to be shady about their complete lack of agency in the game.
At tribal council Brooke was repulsed by Locky’s facial hair before AK spoke about how nerve racking it is to have had no time to strategise. Jacqui spoke about the importance of staying calm and sticking with what you know, which is exactly what you do when you’re in the majority. Moana reiterated that she trusts who she trusts and is looking forward to riding with them until the end. Lee was coy about pre-planning for situations like tonight, which Dave agreed with, given he and his alliance all know what they want to happen. Oh and the scrambling was super boring to him. Tarzan quoted Keith Nale and said that he will be sticking to the plan, while Zach agreed that he knows what he is meant to do in the plan. This gave Harry hope, so he pleaded with the people in the middle to make the right decision for their – and his – games and to start building their resume. Lee agreed that he needs to play differently if he wants to win this time, leading to Zach joining the fray and reminding him that you need to make a move at the right time. Which Brooke reiterated is right now.
Sharn tried to slyly counter the pitch, encouraging the people that Vakama are appealing to have a decision to make tonight. Which they can’t come back from. This led to Harry reminding everyone that they need to make a move before there aren’t enough people to help them make said moves. And it is never too early to build a resume, right? With that the tribe voted and despite working hard to save himself, Dirty Harry was vanquished to join Locky on the jury.
While my arms may not have been as cute and comforting as his sweet son Oscar – remember Oscie? – he was thrilled to once again see me in the Jury Villa after he suffered the indignity of being tortured in the challenge from hell.
“I know you’re not my biggest fan Ben, but I’m so glad to see you here – I could really use a big ol’ bowl of that mac and cheese.”
My heart sank. Had I truly made him feel so awful for trying to cross Pia that he believed I didn’t love him? Or did Queen Shonee rightfully explain that my low self-esteem means that a bit of flattery will get you everywhere with me. With that, I put my pants back on – Locky and I were reenacting his famous challenge from season 2/4, and headed to the kitchen to make him something even more triumphant than mac, in the form of my Harry Phillsy Cheesesteak Pizza.
Oh and then I apologised for cursing him for his second game. Damn you pizza!
Delicately charred beef – is that possible? – sweet peppers and the earthiness of the provolone are three of my favourite things. Add to that some mushrooms and you’ve got a sandie-j come pizza that is so damn good, you don’t even care about the fact an ancient curse felled your game while I was recipe planning.
Harry Phillsy Cheesteak Pizza
500g beef loin, trimmed and cut into thin strips
salt and pepper, to taste
2 tsp butter
250g mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 onion, sliced
½ red capsicum, cored, seeded and sliced
½ green capsicum, cored, seeded and sliced
2 bases as per Pizsa Zsa Gabor
½ cup passata
handful of fresh Italian herbs, roughly chopped
1-2 cups provolone cheese, grated
Prep the bases as per Zsa Zsa’s instructions.
While Zsa Zsa is proving herself, get to work prepping the toppings. Start by heating a lug of olive oil in a skillet over medium and cook the beef strips until medium. Remove from heat and leave to rest.
In another skillet, melt the butter over medium heat and cook the mushrooms until soft, shiny and they have reabsorbed all of the liquid. Remove the mushrooms to a plate. In the same pan, add another lug of olive oil and cook the onion for about five minutes, or until soft and sweet. Transfer it to a plate before adding the capsicum to the pan and cook for a couple of minutes, or until soft and sweet. Remove from the heat.
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
To assemble, smear the bases with passata and herbs. Top with the onion, followed by the capsicum, mushroom and steak. Sprinkle with a generous amount of provolone, transfer to the oven and bake for fifteen minutes, or until bubbly and golden.
Devour immediately, thankful this recipe wasn’t lined up for Shonee. Or did I deliberately enact the curse?
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