Survivor: Kaoh Rong Winner

In the most anticlimactic penultimate episode ever, Joe’s age finally caught up to him in Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 13 when he became the third person this season to be medically evacuated. That leaves a final four of Aubry Bracco, Cydney Gillon, Michele Fitzgerald, and Tai Trang competing to be the Survivor: Kaoh Rong winner.

Meh. I still want Caleb to win. But his buddy Tai has proved to be quite the force in this game despite at first glance seemingly being out of his element.

Oh, and Mark the chicken still survives.

He had planned to play his idol at 5 regardless, but now Tai’s hidden immunity idol is useless because it can’t be used after 5, the third one this season to not be used. Not that they haven’t had an impact. They just haven’t been getting used to nullify votes.

Aubry is concerned about Michele because she hasn’t made enemies on the jury.

For the reward challenge, they will crawl under a net, toss tiles through a target, balance those tiles while crossing a balance beam, and lastly look for matching pairs. Aubry is the only one having much success, but she apparently doesn’t know what the word pair means. In the end, Aubry realizes her mistake and wins reward, a meal.

She can choose whether to bring someone or not, and she picks Cydney. Why play favorites like that if Jeff’s not forcing you to do so, especially this late in the game? Tai and Michele should probably be getting the hint since this is exactly the same thing Aubry did last week.

Michele and Tai discuss what just happened, but there don’t seem to be any real alliances here. Everybody is up for whatever, as long as it’s not them.

For the immunity challenge, they will race back and forth across the water retrieving keys and then solve a three layer puzzle. Aubry builds up a good lead retrieving the pieces, and logic would suggest her as the last standing member of the Brains tribe to be the favorite to win. Tai is the first to advance to the second level and the third level. Michele is kind of in it, while Aubry and Cydney are lost. Then Tai all of a sudden slows way down, and Michele wins immunity.

Despite the fact that she keeps going out of her way to bring Cydney on rewards, Aubry feels her only option is to force a tie. On the other side, Michele wants to get rid of Aubry, so Cydney will go with that plan. They approach Tai, hoping he will just make the easy Aubry vote, rather than forcing a fire making challenge that Aubry is not so sure she can even do. If Aubry does go, Tai’s probably on his own next time if there is a final two instead of a final three, so with that in mind, it makes sense to at least give her a shot to control her own destiny because it’s not like he’s at risk either way.

Votes
Aubry
Cydney
Aubry
Cydney

There is a tie. Tai and Michele don’t see a reason to revote. Cydney and Aubry must compete in a fire making challenge.

Aubry is the first to make fire. As her blaze continues to grow, Cydney isn’t even competitive. Just as it looks like Aubry is going to win, her fire slowly dwindles to nothing. Luckily for her, Cydney is still having nothing resembling success. Aubry wins, and Cydney has been eliminated. Cydney’s waterworks as she leaves suggest she would have had a strong case for a sympathy vote.

Tai just got what he wanted, but Michele fears he just handed Aubry the game. Given the number of evacuations, it would seem there’s still another challenge.

There is another challenge, but there’s also one last twist. They are not competing for immunity. They are competing for the right to vote out a jury member. An interesting twist, though I’d still rather see a final two like classic Survivor instead of the final three where one person is usually just taking up space.

They have to bring balls across a balance beam and build a stack. Michele is consistently in the lead throughout the challenge, and as Aubry’s stack comes crashing down in a last second come from behind attempt, Michele wins.

Michele has already made it clear that she’s afraid of Aubry, which means her winning should be just as beneficial to Tai. Michele thinks there’s one clear vote, Joe. The other likely Aubry vote is Neal. On the flip side, Tai’s former allies Scot and Jason may vote for him, assuming they’re not bitter. Then they start rambling about how they need to get rid of someone who may persuade other votes, perhaps a loud mouth like Scot or Jason. I’m not convinced this is even a consideration or worth the time they are spending on it.

Vote
Neal

Neal is clearly bitter as he leaves, so he can just blow his hot air in departing because he’s now irrelevant. It’s a pretty safe assumption that he was an Aubry vote and that Michele made the right choice. Of course, there’s the risk that Tai’s the bigger threat, but I don’t think anyone has made it quite so obvious they are voting for him.

Nick tells Michele to be intelligent, Tai to be aware, and Aubry to be confident.

Debbie asks a very Debbie question. Does Tai have multiple personalities? Then she tells Aubry she’s very proud of her.

Julia, perhaps the weakest player there tonight, calls Michele the weakest link, and claims that her big move was getting rid of her. She then says Tai was weak after the merge when he had multiple alliances, a secret advantage, and a hidden immunity idol.

Joe says he’s going to ignore Michele, but he pretends to humor Tai.

Jason asks Michele whether she just got lucky, and he asks Tai a question that he’s already answered, why he left Scot and Jason.

Cydney also asks about her own elimination.

Scot mostly just wants to make Tai and Aubry squirm, but he concludes by saying that Michele is the only one who got stronger as the game continued.

Before the vote is revealed, they have one last piece of business to attend to. They have to say goodbye to Mark.

Votes
Michele
Aubry
Aubry
Michele
Michele
Michele

The Survivor: Kaoh Rong winner is Michele Fitzgerald. She’s not an unlikable winner, which perhaps is the point because that means bitter jury members can’t take it out on her, but I’m not sure I can think of what she did.

As Jeff asks Tai questions, someone apparently famous starts yelling. Sia wants to give $50,000 to Tai and $50,000 to a charity of his choice.

Survivor will return again for season 33, Survivor: Millennials vs. Gen X. I’m not sure this is a good thing or a bad thing.

Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 13

Jason was the obvious vote in Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 12, and he was the one who did end up going home, much to Tai’s surprise.

Tai feels that Aubry pulled a fast one on him by not informing them that the plans had changed or at least that nobody wanted to listen to his plan to get rid of Michele. She deliberately left him out of the loop in attempt to reclaim some control. He might have been better off sticking with those asshats Scot and Jason. They were planning to screw him, too, but because he’s a threat, not just randomly.

For the reward challenge, they will retrieve bags from the jungle to toss. Reward is a trip to a spa. Cydney and Aubry get off to an early lead. Aubry ends up scoring 4 out of the 5 she needs. Eventually, everybody can just take a nap as Joe slowly makes his way through the challenge. In this instance, however, speed is irrelevant, and it’s probably doing more harm than good to rush. He can just take his time because after they run out of bags, they have to wait around until everybody is finished before they get any more bags. Joe ends up winning reward after scoring on his final two tosses in a row.

Joe chooses Aubry to go with him on reward. Then, at Aubry’s insistence, he picks Cydney to join them, a slap in the face to Tai and really not anything that was necessary. She should have shut her mouth and let Joe make enemies, rather than painting a target on her own back.

As they discuss their plans for final three that none of them are really sure about, Tai and Michele have the opportunity back at camp to try to bond since they seem to be on the bottom.

During their time at the reward, Aubry has decided that Cydney’s also a threat, so she might as well stick with who she has been with so far. This leads to her patching things up with Tai. When Cydney sees this, she approaches Michele, who also thinks she has Tai onboard with her.

A side effect of the reward is that during it Joe kept eating meat. He calls in medical because he’s stopped going to the bathroom.

After some medication and a bit of improvement, he’s still struggling and not improving enough where he’s comfortable. At age 72, his enlarged prostate is a contributing factor to the doctor’s concern that he won’t be able to recover while on the island. With that, Joe is evacuated.

Three people have now faced medical evacuation this season, the most ever. Normally we see something like this mid-season as well, so for it to happen one episode away from the finale feels somewhat anticlimactic.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 14, where we will find out who the Survivor Kaoh Rong winner is, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 12

Julia was somewhere in the middle but never really in control, and it finally caught up with her in Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 11 as the majority alliance decided to get rid of her.

Jason’s now completely alone, but he has one last card to play. Nobody likes him, and he hasn’t done anything that would win him the game.

Tai reveals his extra vote to Aubry and Joe. That extra vote would give them the majority regardless of how everybody else votes.

In order to make himself extra dislikeable, Jason has a new strategy. Just sit around and do nothing. People may not like you more than now, but I don’t get how that’s a path toward winning.

For the reward challenge, they will cross obstacles in the water and then maneuver three balls through a maze. Reward is to go to an animal rescue sanctuary and have a picnic. Joe, Aubry, and Cydney are against Tai, Michele, and Jason. Joe is limping his way through the challenge and puts his team behind. They can’t really figure out the maze anyway, and by the time they land one ball, it’s already too late. Tai, Michele, and Jason win reward.

Though Tai loves animals, he’s worried that he’s going to the reward with the two outcasts rather than anyone with whom he is allied. The only thing he is missing is the girls getting mad at Joe telling them how to tend the fire, especially Cydney, who doesn’t like being told what to do.

For the immunity challenge, they will stack blocks on a wobbly table held by a rope and walk back and forth to the blocks. Jeff keeps talking about how Joe and Michele are winning, but none of that matters because they drop their blocks. So do Aubry and Tai. Then Jason. Meanwhile, Jeff has been going on and on about how Cydney is out of it, but slow and steady now has her ahead of the others. Joe can’t spell the word immunity any more, and Michele, Tai, and Aubry all drop again. Cydney’s leading all through the eighth letter, but then Jason passes her by seconds. Within feet of victory, Jason drops. Cydney wins immunity.

Tai has decided that Michele is the bigger threat because she hasn’t made any enemies. Aubry agrees. Tai tells everybody about this, including Jason. Joe and Cydney would prefer to get rid of Jason instead. Cydney’s the one who warns Michele, and now we’re back again to how Cydney can’t be told what to do.

The claws come out at Tribal Council, while Jason just sits there and watches.

Prior to the votes being read, Tai reveals that he wants to use his advantage, voting again for Michele, but he still needs one or two more.

Votes
Jason
Michele
Michele
Jason
Joe
Jason
Jason

With 4 votes, Jason has been voted of the island. Tai’s entire alliance turned on him but not to get rid of him, which just seems odd.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 13, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 11

Scot and Jason thought they were in control of the game, but that all changed in Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 10 when Tai refused to play along with their super idol plan and ejected Scot and Jason’s idol from the game.

Michele and Julia were out of the loop and realize that puts them on the bottom with Jason.

Tai feels bad for what he did, but he realizes it’s a game in which he now has all the advantages.

For the reward challenge, they will retrieve rings from an obstacle course and then toss them. Reward is a helicopter ride to a picnic. They are tethered together in pairs: Joe and Tai, Julia and Aubry, and Michele and Cydney. By random draw, Jason will not participate. They are pretty close as they get to the ring toss. Joe and Cydney are the only ones having any success. After scoring for a third time, Cydney wins reward for herself and Michele. They choose Aubry to go with them, giving the reason that she hasn’t eaten.

While eating, Aubry and Cydney agree that they still trust Michele. Cydney would rather keep her around a lot more than Tai, who they can’t beat. This is Tai’s problem. None of his alliances actually want to keep him for very long. He’s a challenge threat, a social threat, and has both a hidden immunity idol and an extra vote.

Meanwhile, back at camp, Jason and Julia are plotting to get rid of Tai. They tell cydney when she gets back. As soon as he’s gone, they’re eating Mark the chicken.

For the immunity challenge, they will race out to a platform in the water to memorize symbols and corresponding numbers, which they will use to solve a puzzle on the beach. It doesn’t seem likely that they would do it on the first try, but Julia and Michele both do that and open their boxes with letters to unscramble. It’s even more unexpected that the Beauty tribe members are winning while the Brains fall apart around them. Joe decides to just quit, but by this point it doesn’t matter anyway. Michele wins immunity.

Jason’s the easy vote, but Julia wouldn’t be such a bad choice either after coming so close at the challenge. Michele was fine with the Jason vote, but she doesn’t want to get rid of Julia.

Before the votes are read, Tai asks Aubry if he should play his idol. She thinks he’s fine.

Votes
Tai
Julia
Tai
Julia
Julia
Julia

With 4 votes, Julia has been voted off the island. Always being with both sides but not really has finally caught up to her.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another live recap of Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 12, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 10

People finally got tired of Debbie’s mouth, leading to her demise in Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 9 at the hands of her alliance.

Jason believes it was their brilliant “strategy” of being asshats that kept them safe.

Tai returns his second idol to its original owner.

Scot then calls Cydney a bunch of names and pretends to be mature, which Aubry does not believe is possible.

The reward challenge requires them to place one foot on a balancing beam and a pot on the other end. They can choose food, letters from home, or an advantage. There will potentially be three winners, one for each prize. Tai, Cydney, and Aubry choose advantage. Scot, Jason, and Michele choose food. Julia and Joe choose letters.

Joe drops quickly, and Julia wins letters without much effort. Scot drops, followed by Jason. Michele wins food. Cydney drops. It’s been less than 10 minutes, but the challenge is almost over. Aubry drops. Tai wins advantage.

Tai’s advantage is an extra vote. At least that’s less lame than the stupid super idol that he also has access to. This gives him a heck of a lot of power, a lot more useful than a letter or a burger.

Julia wants to flush the idols and vote for Tai. Aubry warns him. She thinks this will get him closer to her, but he’s got his own alliance to go tell about this discussion. The flaw in his interpretation is that she’s a free agent who wants to join all three of them. Scot’s response: let’s get rid of Aubry. Well, that was unexpected. Tai is surprised as well and doesn’t feel like he really has any say in this alliance.

For the immunity challenge, they will stretch their arms out and use their finger tips to hold discs attached to pots at their sides. Joe’s first out again. After 25 minutes, Scot drops, and Julia follows. Tai falls next. Then Michele. After 45 minutes, Cydney is out. Another half an hour passes. Aubry finally drops. Jason wins immunity.

What Aubry is showing unexpectedly is that she’s quite competent at these endurance challenges, one more reason to get rid of her.

Regardless of what Julia is saying, the other girls want to get rid of Scot. Julia keeps thinking she’s in the middle, but it always seems that just means that nobody is listening to her.

Tai doesn’t really trust his alliance, who tell Julia they need to get rid of him eventually, but he’s not sure he wants to turn on them either.

Votes
Tai
Aubry
Scot
Tai
Aubry
Scot
Scot
Scot

With 4 votes, Scot has been voted off the island. Tai shakes his head no. Here I was irritated that they took all the game out of the game by making the idol something that could be used after the votes are read, and Tai brings strategy where it seemed there wasn’t any, making the whole thing backfire by refusing to share. The side effect of a Scot elimination is that Tai just flushed the second idol, which Jason gave to Scot before Tribal because he had individual immunity.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another live recap of Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 11, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 9

Irritated that they were being accused of forming an alliance, the women proceeded to do just that in Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 8 and joined together to eliminate Nick.

Scot has a plan to get even. Take away tools. His goal is to make people miserable. Jason is fully onboard with this. How unexpected to see the big bullies acting like big bullies. It’s not as if they can rely on their minds to come up with a way back into the game. Tai at least is above this.

The women figure out how to open a coconut without any tools. This makes Scot angry because it took them 20 minutes to outsmart him. So he dumps water on the fire, which they then rebuild.

For the reward challenge, they will work together to separate themselves from being tied together, then toss some bags to knock over targets. Reward is Chinese food. Joe volunteers to sit out. Tai, Jason, and Scot form their own team, and Julia offers to join them. As the odd man out, Joe votes for the girls to win, so he will either join them if they win or get nothing, a personal decision but perhaps not a smart one. The women fall behind on the rope task, and they never catch up.

Julia’s choice at the challenge is not lost on anyone. She may not have necessarily flipped, but she’s weighing her options. Seeing this, the other girls have a new target in mind.

Not to be outdone, that night Tai puts out the fire, too. He doesn’t get any blame for it, though. The women just assume it was Scot. After that, Debbie flat out refuses to vote for Julia and wants Scot gone instead.

The immunity challenge requires them to stack blocks like dominoes, spacing them just right so they can hit a gong on the other side. As most people fall apart around her, Michele is going slow and steady, but her stack stops a couple shy of the target. Then Debbie unsuccessfully tries. So does Jason. Debbie again. On her first attempt, Julia wins immunity.

That pretty much forces their hands. Like it or not, they can’t get rid of Julia now.

Debbie proposes a split vote. Aubry is afraid because she is saying this plan in front of Julia, which if she flips would cause whoever the others want to go home. Of course, Julia reveals this plan to the other side.

Because Debbie keeps talking without apparently thinking, Cydney and Aubry discuss getting rid of her instead. Joe refuses. Ironically, what they were so upset about is that Debbie was telling Julia her plan. So they tell her theirs. I do not understand how you arrive at this conclusion. Either you trust Julia to know information, or you don’t.

At Tribal Council, Scot reveals that Tai has an idol, and then Jason reveals his. Once again, this is all news to Julia, who thinks she is playing both sides, though neither side actually wants her for anything more than a temporary vote.

Following the vote, Jason hands his idol to Tai.

Votes
Scot
Cydney
Scot
Cydney
Cydney
Debbie
Debbie
Debbie
Debbie

With 4 votes, Debbie has been voted off the island. I’m not sure whether that whole idol song and dance helped decide anything or not.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another live recap of Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 10, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 8

A seemingly harmless cut on his leg spelled the end of Neal’s time on the island in Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 7, as medical pulled him from the game.

For the challenge, they will use poles to transport one person across to the other side. Reward is ice cream. Julia chooses Nick, Debbie, Scot, and Tai. Aubry chooses Cydney, Michele, Joe, and Jason. Julia and Aubry are the ones walking across the poles. Julia goes slow and steady as Aubry keeps falling in the water. Michele takes over for Aubry and has no more success, and Cydney faces the same fate. Julia makes it across without falling, and her team joins her on the platform. Aubry blames her team and by extension herself for picking them, but her contribution didn’t exactly help.

Scot and Jason are worried about an all girl alliance, so they want to make sure one of the women goes next. When the others return, Nick approaches Julia to confirm, which Cydney sees and gets suspicious. She goes up to Jason, who plays dumb, not exactly a stretch, but Cydney isn’t buying it.

For the immunity challenge, they will balance on a perch while holding a handle above their heads. After 5 minutes, Jeff has a temptation, the only one he will be offering. Julia can’t even wait for him to get back with the food. Jason, Scot, Joe, and Michele take the food. Tai says he doesn’t want any of the Brains to win. Then Debbie steps down, and Aubry follows. As soon as he sees the Brains are done, Nick gives up as well. Tai has been struggling almost since the beginning, but he has refused to give up. After 40 minutes, Cydney, who seemed solid throughout, finally steps down. Tai wins immunity.

The plan is to split the votes between Debbie and Aubry with Debbie as the target. Nick tells Aubry the plan and suggests she vote for Debbie while also acknowledging he’s being arrogant.

Cydney, who denied the existence of a female alliance, has a different plan. She wants to form a female alliance and get rid of Nick. Of course Debbie and Aubry support this idea, but the question is which way Julia and Michele will go.

Tai reveals at Tribal Council that there is potentially a super idol in the game. This is all news to Julia, which begs the question why she’s so out of the loop in this large alliance of seven.

Votes
Aubry
Debbie
Nick
Aubry
Jason
Nick
Nick
Nick
Nick

With 5 votes, Nick has been voted off the island. His arrogance got the best of him. The seemingly random Jason vote came from Tai, and that was not something anyone had discussed, though there are those who would certainly like to see Jason go away.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another live recap of Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 9, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 7

As the Brains turned on each other in Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 6, Peter was eliminated.

Cydney notices a bulge in Neal’s pocket, which she takes to be an idol. That could be the worst hiding job ever.

As one tribe sails across to meet the others, they are now merged.

There are 4 Beauty, 4 Brains, and 3 Brawn left. Nick approaches Aubry and Neal to form an alliance against the Brawn, but he is concerned about both Tai and Julia. Then he goes to the other team and learns that Tai has an idol.

Next up is Debbie. She wants to be in an alliance with Tai, but he doesn’t like her aggressive approach. Her other allies notice that her approach is probably a problem as well. Realizing they’re probably screwed by Debbie being Debbie, Aubry asks Neal if he has the idol, and he says he does. She should have just looked at his pocket.

Jason’s theory is that Beauty always goes with the jocks, which he apparently thinks describes himself, while they shove the nerds in lockers.

The immunity challenge requires ball balancing while also balancing on a perch. Joe is out early, and Debbie is right behind him. Jason falls toward the end of the round. After 5 minutes, they add a second ball. Michele, Neal, Scot, Cydney, and Aubry all drop within seconds. Then a third ball is added. Julia has been steady the whole time, but she’s the next one out. As Tai is eliminated, Nick wins immunity.

Michele doesn’t think that Jason or Scot can get any votes, and Nick thinks they are idiots. So they’ll be siding with them to get rid of Aubry.

At the challenge, they were discussing all their wounds. Jeff shows up at camp with medical to check everybody out. Tai is healing nicely. Scot is badly infected, but they will just keep an eye on it. Aubry looks sketchy, but they will be conservative and start her on antibiotics.

The nasty looking thing on Neal’s back is not an issue, but because what’s on his knee is potentially damaging to a joint, he is pulled from the game.

It wasn’t Aubry but her right hand man instead, and he departs with the idol they had hoped would save them if anything went wrong, which apparently it was.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another live recap of Survivor: Kaoh Rong Episode 8, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.