Previously on Survivor three powerboats sped through the ocean off Fiji to deliver 18 new victims to our lord and saviour Jeffrey Probst. Emphasis on victims, as poor Bruce hit his head during the first challenge and proceeded to bleed litres of blood until the challenge was paused for medical. After giving him the all clear to continue in the game, the challenge continued and somehow his Tika tribe powered ahead. That is until Carolyn got stuck at the end and the other tribes overtook them, with Soka winning supplies outright. Ratu meanwhile selected to earn theirs using brawn, leaving TIka to get theirs via smarts. Later that night the tribe joyfully had fire and settled in before Bruce deteriorated to the point where medical returned and he was tragically pulled from the game with a concussion.
The next day Ratu were the final tribe to get fire as they quickly became grateful for Matthew, given he was so good at building their camp for them. He opened up about having a massive spirit of adventure and that he came out to prove to his husband and son that they can do anything and ugh, I love him. Sadly his sense of adventure led to him climbing a massive rock and promptly falling off, dislocating his shoulder in the process. And while he popped it back in, the medic was called to camp as he started to bleed everywhere from his foot, worrying his stupidity would cost him his place in the game. Thankfully though, the hardest working doctor cleared him to stay in the game though Matthew started to worry about whether he would even be able to compete in the upcoming challenge. Unaware that they will sadly be able to sit someone out.
Back at Tika Carson was quickly locking in an alliance with Sarah and Helen, which breaks my heart given Carolyn and Yam Yam are the absolute best casting choices in years. Carolyn meanwhile knew she was on the bottom, given nobody had spoken to her and as such, she approached Helen to say she didn’t want to follow anyone around to chase friends but she was interested to chat if she was. Before we got an epic supercut of her hilariously being loud and kooky.
A boat dropped by the camps where they learnt one person from each would be going on an adventure, with Yam Yam suggesting they pull sticks at Tika with Sarah getting lucky. Soka did the same, with Matt disappointed to rep his tribe while Lauren drew the black rock to seal her fate. Which she rigged in her favour, like an icon. While she was gone however, the tribe speculated what she would tell them when she came back before they agreed to hunt for the key in her absence, while Maddy speculated the cage may only be there to cause chaos. Thankfully though, Brandon quickly found the key in front of her and while he thought he was being stealth, she spotted him leaving him to admit he found it. Despite Brandon wanting to tell everyone, Maddy suggested they talk it out first and while she was hoping it would bond them, it made him distrustful of her, so he instead opened it in front of everyone and confirmed that the cage was home to both an idol and fake one.
Over at Journey Island, Lauren, Matt and Sarah introduced themselves before walking to the top of the where they learnt they would each split up on their own paths where they learnt they would have to pull an item out of a bag, two of which lose will cause them to lose their votes and the the third being an advantage. The trick being if they lose their vote on the first pull, they can pull a second one and try again, either jagging the advantage or losing twice. Sadly Sarah lost her vote at the next tribal council before jagging the new inheritance advantage, which is where she can collect every advantage played at a future tribal council. Matt too lost his vote on the first try, though sadly had bad luck on his second too, leaving him voteless for two rounds. On the flipside, Lauren jagged the advantage on her first try getting the new Bank Your Vote advantage meaning she can forgo voting at an upcoming tribal council and hold on to the parchment for a later date.
Matt was first to get back to his camp with him only admitting he lost one of his votes. Sarah meanwhile told the tribe she risked her vote but wasn’t sure if she gained an advantage yet, while Lauren told them what the advantage on the table was but pretended she didn’t have it.
The tribe joined with Probst for the first immunity challenge of the season where Ratu and Soka were heartbroken to see that Bruce had in fact been medevaced. Though Probst assured them that now that he is in hospital, he is doing much better and will make a full recovery. But back to the challenge, where the tribes would race out in a boat to a buoy, dive off and swim to release a chest and then pull it over a track to unlock a slide puzzle. And then solve said puzzle, with first and second place being immune and third tribe joining Probst at tribal council. Matthew and Claire took their places on the sitout bench before all tribes were neck and neck as they swam to release their chests. Soka started to pull out in front as Ratu and Tika got stuck on the shore.
Eventually everyone caught up at the puzzle, while on the benches Claire was inspired by Shonee and Liz in Australia, whispering to Matthew what the person told them about the island, outing Lauren as a liar in the process. Medical made their fourth appearance of the premiere as Brandon was pulled off the course to cool down and get fluids before the challenge restarted and Soka quickly pulled out victory before Tika narrowly saved themselves, sending Ratu to the first tribal council of the season.
Back at camp Brandon apologised for letting the tribe down, while Matthew in particular was frustrated to have injured himself and not help in the challenge. He took the information Claire gave him during the challenge back to Brandon and Kane, with them quickly locking in the vote against Lauren. Meanwhile she was chatting with Maddy who was busy talking shit about Brandon, pointing out he doesn’t have their back and can’t be trusted due to the idol. They approached Jamie about banding together to get rid of him instead and leave the women to take control. Sadly for them, Jamie was nervous about everything and as such, was considering playing her Shot in the Dark. Maddy pulled Kane aside and told them the girls were planning to target Brandon and while Kane wasn’t thrilled about losing his strength too soon, he also just wanted to be on the right side of the first vote..
Which TBH, seems like something nobody could even predict at this point, given they entire tribe are all over the shop.
At tribal council Jamie spoke about how tense everyone was while Matthew was concerned about which plan will come together, given so many names were thrown out. Brandon agreed that there was a lot of confusion back at camp, while Lauren was feeling tense despite having a few little allies to lean on. Jamie spoke about knowing about at least one advantage since Brandon found the idol in front of everyone, which Matthew pointed out was better than someone keeping secrets. Brandon reiterated that he didn’t know he was going for an idol when he unlocked the cage, while Kane was hopeful tribal council would give him a little clarity, while Maddy was hopeful they would just be stronger as a group. While Brandon agreed he was looking to get rid of a weaker link. Before voting Jamie spoke about the fact she will be playing her Shot in the Dark, given her vote shouldn’t even matter tonight. Which immediately spooked Brandon.
With that the tribe voted, well, at least some of them, as Lauren banked her vote and Matthew joined Jamie in playing his Shot in the Dark. The latter of which became the first to actually be played correctly. Given the chaos, Brandon then played his idol which negated two of the three that were cast, sending Maddy out of the game with only a single vote.
As she arrived at Loser Lodge Maddy was obviously bummed to be out of the game so soon, though I reminded her that going out on a tribal council of firsts is alway memorable. And as such, she is now robbed and we queer folk will rally behind her right to play again and dominate. Similar to how Wentworth became a thing, I guess. While it wasn’t my best pep talk, she cheered up know an entire community would now be behind her as I toasted her hopeful return with a Maddy Snowbilla.
While on paper a snowball always seemed a little yuck, after taking the plunge – because alcohol is alcohol, ok? – I quickly fell in love. Sweet with a quick of tart, it is the perfect way to refresh your spirit on a cool evening.
Serves: 1 robbed icon.
1 tbsp lime juice, plus lime wedges to garnish
¼ cup advocaat
½ cup lemonade
Fill an old fashioned or highball glass with ice, followed by the lime juice, advocaat and then the lemonade.
Stir gently, top with a lime wedge and down. Repeat as desired.
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