Previously on Australian Survivor a BBQ reward had everyone fighting hard, slipping and sliding to snatch something to eat. After David, Moana, Zach, Brooke and Sharn dominated the others, they headed off to smash their feast before learning that they also won letters from home. While I thought that would be all the tears I would cry this episode, Lee was pulled away from camp to learn that his mother had suffered a massive stroke. After telling everyone what had happened, the tribe rallied around him as they farewelled him from the game to go be with his family. With his mother tragically passing away before he made it back to Brisbane.
Before we could process what happened, Jonathan returned to our screens for the next immunity challenge where they were required to tread water in the shallows while holding a ball in a shoot above their heads. With the last one standing, or treading more accurately, snatching immunity. Moana quickly dropped out, followed by Zach, Jacqui and AK, all within the first five minutes. Tarzan was next to go while the other four fought hard for over thirty minutes.
Sharn was next to go, quickly followed by Brooke leaving Queen Shonee to face off against David. Knowing that they were screwed should she win immunity, AK pulled Brooke aside and told her not to tell Shonee when she was close to dropping in the hope of saving themselves. Sadly for them, she and David managed to hold on for ninety minutes before David started to struggle. And then dropped his ball after two hours, handing Queen Shonee her second immunity.
Back at camp the tribe congratulated Shonee on her victory before she shared that she is so good at swimming because she treads water while chatting with her friends at the pool every day. After throwing some shade at the people that call her weak, she caught up with AK and Brooke to figure out a plan while David, Zach and Tarzan tried to figure out who to get rid of after the tie between Brooke and AK. With them favouring Brooke, given she is the bigger beast in challenges. With that Sharn approached Shonee, Brooke and AK to make sure that they weren’t looking for idols, though admitted that she would be interested to talk. AK suggested that she could pick their target and join them to get rid of that person, sending them home without needing to revote.
Unsure whether Sharn would follow through, AK got to work chatting to Zach and David to find a way to get them to not split the votes between him and Brooke. And instead join them to get rid of Brooke. She, meanwhile, was focused solely on keeping their alliance together. Wait, no, she pulled Shonee aside to see if she would join her in writing down AK’s name and sending him home to avoid a tie.
At tribal council Jonathan caught the jury up on the Lee situation before Moana spoke about how they aren’t simply targeting OG Vakamas, and instead are trying to get rid of threats. And while David tried to echo the sentiment, AK called bullshit and said that he and Brooke are screwed. Brooke admitted to wearing her vote-out outfit – so she looks good getting her torch snuffed – before Shonee went in, telling the majority how funny it is how many different agendas their alliance is managing. Jacqui tried to downplay things, reminding everyone that they are all cogs in a wheel and it only functions when they stick together. AK laughed about how great it will be when they need to turn on each other, before Brooke called out Dave – a physical threat – for targeting her for being a physical threat. She then savaged Dave and told him to lift his game, which was a-maze-ing.
Jonathan then put a spanner in all their works, telling everyone that tonight, the three highest vote getters at tonight’s tribal council would be going to Exile Beach. Joined by three people after the next tribal council, before the six battle in a series of challenges until one person is eliminated. Which is convoluted, however I will forgive it because they had to drag things out another episode after Lee’s family tragedy.
With that the tribe voted and as expected AK and Brooke were sent to exile, while they stuck together with Shonee and the trio selected a frustrated Moana to join them. And when they arrived at Exile, her mood did not improve one bit as she silently put herself to bed as the other two snuggled in together. The next morning the trio awoke to a beautiful sunny day, while Moana was miserable, hiding in the jungle before rallying and encouraging her fellow exiles to make the camp as nice as possible. And then bonding with the duo so that should they all make it back, they are two people that she can have in her back pocket.
Back in the main game the tribe were eating a breakfast of sandy rice, giving Shonee the giggles while the boys grew annoyed at Jacqui. Who I assume, they assume put the sand in it. Despite being down 5-1, Queen Shonee was hopeful that her positive attitude and friendly nature would help her avoid going to exile for the second time. She bonded with Dave, swapping celebrity stories, however he knew her game and didn’t want to give her a further in. As such, he worked on Zach and Tarzan to confirm that they will still send Shonee to Exile before planting the seeds that Zach should sacrifice himself to save the rest of the alliance. And more importantly, Dave.
Jonathan returned for the next immunity challenge where the tribe would hold onto a long pole tethered to a board where they must balance three balls in holes one at a time. And then return to the end of their pole without dropping any. I’d like to say the challenge was exciting, but honestly, it was brutal to watch as everyone dropped their balls over and over again, until Sharn finally snagged victory and put everyone out of their misery.
Back at camp David got to work trying to avoid going to exile, while Sharn tried to figure out who to send to exile with Shonee. With Zach seemingly still keen to be one of them and Tarzan unlikely to win a challenge, so therefore safe, David and Jacqui were the only other options. Poor, sweet Zach – who would have thought – was keen to be part of the A team, as David tried to pretend that Jacqui would be a better member of the team, despite him having a better challenge record. David and Sharn caught up, with Sharn pointing out that David would be a good option to win the challenge with him trying to defend himself by pointing out that he is sick and weakened. Eventually they and Jacqui agreed that Jacqui was the better option and hot damn, why aren’t they targeting him?
Alone at camp with Sharn and Tarzan, Jacqui told them that she doesn’t want to go to Exile and as such, she and Sharn floated the possibility of blindsiding David instead. Sharn then told Tarzan that she has plenty of plans for how to navigate that moving forward and while he agreed nobody wants to face David at the end, why do I think this isn’t going to end well for Sharn? Oh, because Tarzan took said intel straight back to David, that’s why.
At tribal council Sharn spoke about the complexity of deciding how to send half the tribe to exile, versus booting a single person from the game. Jacqui admitted that she was keen to go to Exile for her resume to begin with, however the closer it got to the point of going, she got nervous. On cue David coughed to remind everyone how weak he is, before Zach admitted that he is still happy to go to exile. He then pointed out that Jacqui and Shonee are the best at challenges and as such, they would be the ones to join him. Sharn tried to play tough, reminding everyone that they all have their own votes and people shouldn’t fall in line if they don’t want to.
Shonee then admitted that she is going kicking and screaming and looked forward to spending more time with Jacqui on Exile, given she hasn’t really done anything to avoid it. Jacqui tried to defend herself and pointed out that she has done things to protect herself, leading to David pointing out just how strong she is at challenges. Zach reiterated how excited he was to build his resume, unaware that being voted out twice and sent to exile isn’t the best way to charm the jury. Unless of course, you’re Shonee – who I would gladly look the other way for.
Sick of all the challenge talk, Jonathan announced that this little twist will work differently than they are expecting, with the exiled group competing in two challenges, with three people earning their way back into the game and joining the other people in the game to vote to boot one of the remaining people on Exile. Shonee tried to use this to point out that all the ex-Vakama people could technically make themselves safe and as such, the Mokutas would be the only people eligible to vote for and as such, sacrificing yourself is pretty stupid. Though Zach, bless, was undeterred. With that, the tribe voted and as expected sent Shonee and Jacqui to exile, with a tie for third between David and Zach. As such, that meant Sharn and Tarzan were required to revote and with her back kind of against the wall, Sharn opted not to rock the boat and sent Zach to Exile.
The exile crew were stirred awake by their new friends, a jubilant Zach included. He then regaled them with tales about how excited he was to volunteer and use going to exile as a way to boost his resume, while AK looked on in concern that someone could be stupid enough to volunteer. I mean, if it was such a great look for the resume, wouldn’t everyone have been pushing for it?
Back at the actual camp, the non-exiled trio were happily lazing about, with Sharn explaining to us that she kept Dave around because she wants to blindside him, not have him exit via a twist. Which sure, sounds great, but I feel like this is revisionist history right there. David was thrilled that he was able to convince Zach to volunteer, before pulling Sharn aside to thank her for protecting him the night before, hoping to make her feel guilty about potentially turning on him. He then suggested to the other two that they need to be careful of the five from exile returning to camp and turning against them, with Jacqui in particular a concern, given she didn’t have a choice in going.
Speaking of Jacqui, she was trying to put on a brave face on Exile while Zach continued to talk about how great their predicament is. This made Jacqui even more furious, annoyed by how stupid Zach is to not see that he is Dave’s puppet and is being groomed as the ultimate goat at final tribal. Thankfully Queen Jacqui was treating this as a wake-up call and she planned to use it to her advantage and turn on the boys as soon as she could. Seeing how enraged Jacqui is, Shonee decided to continue on a charm offensive and endear herself to Jacqui. And use that to flip her to their side. Moana meanwhile was feeling vulnerable, worried about a challenge dictating her fate and as such, was resolved to fight for her family even more.
With that Jonathan returned for the first exile challenge where the first two to make a stick long enough to collect a flint, and then use said flint to build a fire high enough to burn through a rope – deep breath, long sentence, no? – secure their safety and return to the main game. Moana got out to an early lead, thanks in no small part to the constant coaching of David and Sharn. As everyone struggled, Moana got to work on her fire, quickly getting a flame as her coaches cheered from the side. Zach and Brooke battled to release their flints, both anxiously dragging it towards them as Moana’s fire burnt through the rope and secured her safety. She started to break down, overwhelmed by saving herself, as the rest of the group battled it out for second place. Zach was next to get his flint as his allies cheered and coached from the sidelines, much to Jacqui’s chagrin. Brooke quickly joined him after releasing her flint, slowly building a fire while Zach feverishly worked on his, hacking his hands in the process. The duo were neck and neck as their flames built before Brooke’s started licking at the ropes and burnt through just ahead of Zach’s.
Brooke and Moana returned to camp with Sharn, Tarzan and David, talking about how thrilled they are to be back in the game. Well Moana at least, who they all love, while poor Brooke was feeling left out, despite being proud of herself. Meanwhile Zach returned to exile far less jubilant, as he, Jacqui, Shonee and AK lamented their loss. While Zach was confident in his allies saving him no matter what, he knew that winning the challenge is what he needs to build his resume, otherwise offering himself up is a bust. On the flipside, Shonee was still trying to work Jacqui to try and get her to turn on her allies. She and Jacqui caught up and spoke about the last vote, with Shonee telling her that she only voted for her to go to exile because she wanted to spend time with her and hated the thought of hanging with Dave. She then pointed out how her allies were barely cheering her on at the last challenge and as such, they should work together to guarantee their safety even if they lose the challenge.
Speaking of the challenge, Jonathan returned and announced that the final challenge would see each of them holding a weight via a rope and keep it between a coloured zone. With the last person standing returning to the game and the remaining trio becoming the only option for the rest of the tribe. AK and Shonee both struggled early in the challenge while Zach grew cocky, hopping on one leg until his allies told him to pull his head in. As they both continued to struggle, AK suggested he and Shonee drop at the same time, with the icon refusing. While they tried to fight through it, AK couldn’t hold out any longer and became the first person to drop. While Zach and Jacqui stood like statues, Shonee fought with all her might before just dipping out of the coloured zone and eliminating herself from the game. After thirty minutes, chatting about how both trust their allies but won’t give in, the duo started to struggle and in turn, bicker amongst themselves. Well until Zach dropped after 45 minutes, that is, sending Jacqui back to the tribe and filling Shonee’s face with a huge grin.
Back at camp David assured Zach that his alliance has his back and that they would all be joining together to get rid of Shonee. After joining together and outlining that they would force the minority to vote with them to ensure Shonee goes, Jacqui decided to head back to camp for a little more food. As she wandered back, Shonee and Brooke caught up, with Shonee updating her ally on her growing bond with Jacqui and how she believes that if they stick together, they could sway Jacqui to vote Zach as well and send him from the game. With Brooke and AK keen, Shonee caught up with Jacqui with the latter suggesting to turn on Zach before Shonee even floated the idea.
With the foursome locked in, Jacqui wanted to do damage control with Moana before even turning on her. While Moana wasn’t interested in turning on her alliance, she was happy with the idea of getting rid of Zach and freeing up David as a shield for her and Sharn. She filled in Sharn, who agreed that Jacqui’s plan was best for the three of them, but wisely she suggested that she and Moana pretend that they didn’t know about it, making it Jacqui’s move for her resume. And more importantly, keeps David’s wrath solely focused on her only.
At tribal council Zach spoke about trusting in his alliance to keep him safe as payback for protecting them at the last one. Jacqui was proud of herself for earning her safety, while Tarzan agreed that he would be voting to save Zach before David spoke about being across everything that happened on Exile. Tarzan agreed that the alliance didn’t suffer any damage after the twist, before AK hinted that he became aware of some cracks while on exile, though pretended that he got caught out and as such, shut them down. Brooke too acted defeated – shit position, ay – as the majority continued to say the exact same thing in slightly different ways before Shonee played dejected, appealing to Jacqui’s friendship. AK tried to plead with them to make moves before it was too late, while Jacqui pretended that she was happy with the status quo. Shonee and AK pretended that they will be voting for each other before Dave told them that while it sucks, a lot can change in a few days and to hold their head up high, clearly hoping to scoop AK up as an ally for his eventual flip.
With that the tribe voted and David was shocked and frankly, enraged to discover that he had been outplayed as Jacqui became the first one to flip, joining with Brooke, Shonee and AK to send Zach out of the game and over to the jury.
While Zach was embarrassed that his misplaced trust and confidence was his ultimate undoing, I quickly changed the subject and told him to focus on what is truly important. The fact that he got his redemption! I mean, Zach and I were essentially sworn enemies after he trolled me for trolling him during his first season. But showing his genuine, soft side this season, I was reminded of the man I befriended when we both worked on Gladiator. As such, I was thrilled to reward his kind heart and better showing with a batch of Anzach Kozyrskcuits.
Hard or chewy, there is nothing better than an Anzac biscuit. Sweet, earthy and super easy to make, you can tell why these were sent to people in war zones as they have a remarkable way of bringing you even just a moment of unadulterated happiness.
1 ¼ cups flour, sifted
1 cup rolled oats
½ cup raw caster sugar
¾ cup desiccated coconut
150g unsalted butter, chopped
2 tbsp golden syrup
1 ½ tbsp water
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
Preheat the oven to 170C.
Combine the flour, oats, sugar and coconut in a large bowl and stir to combine. Meanwhile place the golden syrup and butter in a saucepan and melt over low heat, stirring sporadically to combine. Remove from the heat.
Mix the water and bicarb together in a cup and add to the golden syrup and butter. Once the bubbling has subsided, add to the dry ingredients and stir until combined.
Roll the mixture into golf-ball sized, balls, and place on lined baking sheets, pressing down the tops to form discs.
Transfer to the oven to bake for 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for five to ten minutes before devouring at their peak chewiness.
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