Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 6

After continuing their losing streak, those with the numbers advantage targeted the other side again in Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 5 and eliminated Stephanie.

The last tribe swap has not been kind Malolo, and they did not help themselves by voting out their strongest player. Perhaps now they can have a better shot when they drop their buffs again. Not content with merely having two tribe swaps after five votes, the other part of the twist is that there is a third tribe.

Naviti (purple): Donathan, Bradley, Domenick, Libby, Chelsea
Malolo (orange): Michael, James, Angela, Desiree, Kellyn
Yanuya (green): Sebastian, Jenna, Wendell, Chris, Laurel

There are three original Naviti and two original Malolo on all three tribes.

Chris is under the impression that he is creating bonds with everybody, but really people just find him annoying.

Angela provides a glimmer of hope for the minority new Malolo since her previous tribe tried to vote her out once already.

Domenick hated Chris. With Chris gone, now his hatred has transferred to Libby.

For the immunity challenge, a caller will command blindfolded pairs to retrieve puzzle pieces and then lead one pair to solve that puzzle while still blindfolded. Chaos and yelling ensues. Malolo is looking like a competent tribe for a change and are in the lead the whole time. Naviti is in second with Yanuya behind them. Desiree’s yelling helped her tribe hear her to find puzzle pieces, but that volume is not helping guide them to solve a puzzle. Wendell screwed up by forgetting a bag despite being the only person on his tribe who was not blindfolded, but he makes up for it on the puzzle. Yanuya wins immunity. Naviti places second. Malolo had a clear lead but blew it. They sent the person who failed in their first puzzle challenge to try again for the same result as before.

This marks the fifth time out of six that Malolo is going to Tribal Council. No matter what configuration they get, they can’t win. How can they improve that? Perhaps they should vote out the smart athlete, James.

That would have sounded like a viable dumb plan if Angela hadn’t been stabbed in the back before, but now she has an opportunity to flip on the people who tried to flip on her.

Votes
James
Desiree
James
James

With 3 votes, James has been voted off the island. I don’t even know how to respond to that. Angela stuck with the people who almost voted her out a couple episodes ago, and they took out another strong competitor, which can only further help to cement Malolo’s reputation as one of the worst challenge tribes ever. Perhaps she’s damned either way because obviously she couldn’t trust the other two either. At least they were united because Michael jumped ship and voted with the others.

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

Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 5

After having just lost immunity in Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 4, Malolo came up with the strategy to come back. Vote out their strongest player. Thus ended Brendan’s run in the game.

For the reward challenge, they will leap over tables, dismantle a pile of heavy sandbags to find a lever, drop some smaller sandbags, and throw them at targets. Reward is coffee and pastries. It’s about even heading into the tossing, where Chris goes against Sebastian. Former pitcher Chris turns a slight lead into an easy win for Naviti.

They go to rocks for Ghost Island. Ugh. Stephanie gets the white rock. She is unable to play any games of chance.

The reward reminds Donathan of home, and following this he is able to bond with Chris about their moms. In addition to these new bonds he is establishing, Chris is also proving strong in challenges. Unlike the other tribe that keeps losing, they see this as an asset.

For the immunity challenge, they will hop on a bodyboard to retrieve bags, be pulled back to shore by their tribes, and solve the combination lock and puzzle inside the bags. Wendell gains an early lead for Naviti, but Libby loses it, at least until Desiree finds herself unable to get on her board. Wendell back again outperforms Chelsea even more than he did the first time. Naviti has a nice lead by the time they get to the puzzle. Naviti wins immunity.

As last time, one of the original Malolo will be the target. It doesn’t seem like they will be dumb enough to get rid of another strong competitor, which would mean a choice between Stephanie and Jenna. Both of them hope to flirt their way into staying. Desiree searches through Stephanie’s bag to see if she found anything on Ghost Island. Shady.

Votes
Desiree
Stephanie
Stephanie
Stephanie
Stephanie
Stephanie

With 5 votes, Stephanie has been voted off the island. They danced around it a lot, but this was the obvious result. The person viewed as the more strategic of the two was eliminated, and both of her allies joined in with the others.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 6, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 4

A tribe swap gave one tribe the advantage on both new tribes in Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 3. Logically, they should be able to pick off the other side one by one. So that didn’t happen. Instead, Morgan was the first casualty following the swap.

Wendell and Domenick apologize to Angela for trying to get rid of her, despite the fact that she is a member of their original tribe. That should get them precisely nowhere. Their only hope to dig themselves out of this hole they stupidly dug themselves into is Domenick’s idol.

The reward challenge requires them to battle in pairs of two and drag a ring to their post. Reward is peanut butter and jelly and milk. Chelsea sits out for Malolo. Chris makes it 1-0 for Naviti. The next round is an actual challenge, but again Naviti scores as Laurel drags the others. Bradley and Sebastian manage to get Malolo on the board, but Naviti scores again in the next round to win.

They aren’t even bothering to discuss who will go to Ghost Island. They will draw rocks. This is stupid. Clearly these two twists don’t mix well together. Kellyn will be going to Ghost Island just a few seconds after telling Jeff this is her biggest Survivor fear.

Kellyn’s game of chance would allow her to win a secret advantage, but it may cost her next vote. She decides to keep her vote and keep her tribe strong.

We now return to the battle of Chris vs. Domenick. Laurel gets along with Wendell, which apparently matters in Survivor.

For the immunity challenge, they swim to a bamboo cage, climb over it, dive under to lift it, swim back with a chest, and use the balls inside to land them on a perch. Desiree sits out for Malolo. Untying the door proves challenging for Naviti. It gets even worse from there. Wendell can’t hook the bridge after numerous attempts. Chris does, but the rest of the tribe think they are on vacation and won’t help him pull it. By the time Chris and Wendell, the only two people doing anything in this challenge, start shooting, Malolo is ahead 3-0. It’s 3-1. Then 4-1. Naviti makes it 4-2. 4-3. It’s eventually tied. Somehow, Naviti wins, no thanks to most of the tribe.

Because Ghost Island is happening after the reward challenge rather than after the immunity challenge, Kellyn is not forbidden from voting, which gives her original tribe the numbers.

The plan? Take out someone strong. Who cares if they lose challenges, as long as they do an unexpected vote and surprise the others? Neither Brendan nor Mike find this surprising, and they have an idol.

They aren’t going to wait. Rather, Mike is going to reveal that he has an idol in the middle of Tribal Council. He lies and says he will be using James’ idol, which is the one he has, and that it counts as two immunities. They will be voting for Bradley. The others can decide to come along or take a 50/50 chance. Still not overly threatening. The worst that could happen is they lose Bradley and end up in a 4-4 deadlock for next time, so either way he’s gone. Unless there’s some lame twist.

Mike’s immunity is not a double idol, but it is a single. He says he’s playing it for himself and Brendan. After watching the reactions of the others, he plays it for Stephanie. Yeah, he misread that.

Votes
Bradley
Bradley
Bradley
Bradley
Brendan
Brendan
Brendan
Brendan
Brendan

With 5 votes, Brendan has been voted off the island. Good effort with what they had, but it fell flat because they didn’t think the others would be stupid enough to put themselves at such a physical disadvantage.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 5, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 3

Lucky he even survived a single vote because he was not there for it, Jacob met his demise in Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 2 when his tribe did get their first opportunity to get rid of him.

They were discussing last time the possibility of a tribe swap and perhaps getting rid of some muscle to prepare for it, but it is both unpredictable and not something anybody took very seriously. Alas, they can now drop their buffs.

Naviti: Angela, Chris, Domenick, Donathan, James, Laurel, Libby, Morgan, Wendell
Malolo: Bradley, Brendan, Chelsea, Desiree, Jenna, Kellyn, Michael, Sebastian, Stephanie

The new Naviti tribe is split 5 old Naviti to 4 old Malolo. Sounds simple. Target Malolo. Domenick’s plan? No, it’s not that. He still wants fellow Naviti member Chris gone. The feeling is mutual.

Likewise, the new Malolo tribe is split 5-4 in favor of old Naviti. Strange split and surprising to see them get the short end on both tribes.

Malolo’s newest tribe members are unimpressed by the job that has been done with the camp so far. After admitting that they probably screwed up a lot at first, Brendan gets mad about their complaining. Then we see why. They just keep complaining.

Chris quickly tells everybody that Domenick has the idol. In doing this, he gets multiple to complain about him being too bossy.

At Malolo, old Malolo all go idol hunting. Michael is the one to find it, and Brendan is there to see that.

For the immunity challenge, they will race through ramp walls, dig up a ladder, retrieve a rope, climb a tower, and solve a puzzle. Reward is a tarp. Malolo takes the lead on the first obstacle. They keep it on the digging. Then they can’t figure out how to use a ladder. This gives Naviti the lead, and they are also the first to climb the tower but only for a small lead. Kellyn and Bradly run away with the puzzle, and Malolo wins immunity for a change.

After having just won, this tribe demonstrates that even though they won, they are broken. They cannot even agree on a person to go to Ghost Island and choose to leave the decision up to a rock draw. Chris gets the white rock and will go to Ghost Island. There goes a prime target, who will now remain a physical asset for his tribe, much to the chagrin of some. That theoretically pits 4 against 4. Like Donathan before him, he does not get to play any games.

There is this philosophy that Angela is Chris’ right hand man, but she is the first to bring up going against his plan. They’ll show him. They want to get rid of the person trying to blow up his plan.

Domenick shows his new tribe members his fake idol and swears on his children he’s being honest with them.

Next name proposed? Morgan.

Votes
Libby
Angela
Angela
Angela
Morgan
Morgan
Morgan
Morgan

With 4 votes, Morgan has been voted off the island. Malolo stayed together. As an added bonus, the other side tried to vote out one of their own but failed. They all just dug themselves into a completely unnecessary hole.

Morgan wills her legacy advantage to Domenick, which means that now Stephanie has no idea where it is.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 4, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 2

Gonzalez was viewed as a potential strategic threat down the road, and without offering much else to offset that, she was the first person voted off the island in Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 1.

Domenick quickly dug himself a hole by being the only person from either tribe to openly express that they made a mistake with their choices for the challenge, and he hasn’t been doing himself any favors since then. He gets up in the middle of the third night and finds an idol in the dark. It is Andrea’s idol, which she did not play and was eliminated.

Jacob is going to “stretch the truth”. By that, he means blatantly lie, but he refuses to admit that is what he’s doing. He makes a fake immunity idol to show his tribe when he returns. Nobody really believes him, but there is always some risk that he is telling the truth and can pick off whoever he wants with just one vote.

Domenick wants to earn the trust of Chris. He won’t show him the real idol, but he makes a fake one. Put together with his note from the real idol, his story is actually believable, unlike Jacob’s. The problem is he just got done lying and telling Chris he didn’t have an idol, so even though part of the story is real, something is not right.

For the immunity challenge, they will race through a series of obstacles, release buoys, then shoot the buoys into a basket. Reward is comfort. Angela sits out for Naviti, saying she is not a good swimmer, honest but not something anyone wants to hear longer term. Naviti starts off with a bit of a lead, and the ineptness of James and Donathan allows them to completely overtake the others, more than lapping them. As James struggles to dive, Donathan won’t even try. After his tribe badgers him, Donathan finally agrees to make an effort, and although this is probably already lost, Donathan is successful at his mission. Naviti has 7 of their 8 baskets before the others even start. Naviti wins immunity.

They send Donathan to Ghost Island, which seems like it would have been the right move minutes ago when he refused to help, but not after he actually was successful.

Donathan gets an empty urn, which means he will not have the opportunity to play whatever game of chance there is.

James is clearly not a diver, but unlike most people who choke, he looks like someone who may have something else to offer. He won’t be the target, but they can throw some votes his way in a split to hedge their bets in case Jacob is telling the truth.

Stephanie pretends to be the only person on Jacob’s side. All it takes is a little flirting, and he tells her everything. The legacy advantage and who has it, the idol is not real, that he would like to get rid of a strong guy like Michael. He trusts her way too much. That trust may be good, but his inability to keep his mouth shut is problematic.

The question now is whether the beautiful people and their clique is considered to be a threat to everybody else. If the answer is yes, the others can band together and flip the script. It wouldn’t even taken many people if there is a split vote coming. Jacob, Stephanie, and her close ally Jenna. They would just need one more.

Votes
Michael
James
Jacob
James
Jacob
Jacob
Jacob

With 4 votes, Jacob has been voted off the island. He’s lucky to have lasted this long. They did show their hand that they wouldn’t have minded if James was out.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 3, which airs Wednesday at 8/7c on CBS.

Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 1

In season 36, Survivor returns to visit the bad decisions of the past. 20 people make up the Survivor: Ghost Island cast and are split into two tribes of ten.

Malalo (Orange): Brendan, Donathan, Jacob, James, Jenna, Laurel, Libby, Michael, Stephanie Gonzalez, Stephanie J
Naviti (Purple): Angela, Bradley, Chelsea, Chris, Desiree, Domenick, Kellyn, Morgan, Sebastian, Wendell

Malolo chooses Brendan to represent their tribe. Niviti picks Chris. They each assume the fittest guy is the proper representative. It turns out that these picks are left to choose people to participate in the challenge. Brendan picks Michael as the fittest person and Laurel for the puzzle. Chris chooses Sebastian and Desiree.

The first person will race through a series of obstacles to dig up a set of keys to use to retrieve puzzle pieces, then the other person will solve the puzzle. They will get much less rice than any previous season, but they instead receive fishing gear. The twist is that the winning tribe not only will receive a shelter building kit, but they will also get to keep the fishing gear. If they think they are going to lose, the leaders can forfeit and keep their fishing gear, but it will come with a penalty of losing eggs and flint to the winners.

Michael hits the ground running but fades about half way through. Still, the tribes are roughly even as they hit the puzzle. Desiree objected to being selected to do the puzzle, though she was not vocal about it like Morgan was. Laurel did not express similar concerns. Chris eventually decides to forfeit the challenge.

Probst questions whether anybody wishes they could have made a different decision. Yes, Domenick does.

Michael is actually 18. He is going to pretend to be 23. He has the body to pull it off, but does he have the maturity?

Chris and Sebastian immediately form an alliance, and they are already worried about Domenick.

On day two, Jacob loses his shoes. Not off to a promising start. After this dumb mistake, he promptly goes searching for an idol, and he is obvious about it.

Wendell went to law school. So now he is a furniture designer. Those skills may come in handy on the island at least.

Sebastian makes the mistake of trusting too many people, telling Wendell that the target is Dom. Nobody blames Sebastian, though. They assume Chris is the trouble maker.

For the immunity challenge, they will use ropes to pull a sled with giant puzzle pieces. Someone from the losing tribe will be the first to visit Ghost Island. Naviti takes a lead retrieving the ropes, and they are still ahead by the time it comes to the puzzle. It doesn’t get any better on the puzzle either. If anything, it gets worse. Naviti wins immunity.

Naviti can pick who goes to Ghost Island. That person cannot be voted out. The simple concept here is to pick a weak link, and they choose someone whose mouth stands out, Jacob, who has been assuming he is probably on the chopping block.

Jacob can gamble for an advantage. He can either gain an advantage or lose his vote next time. He wins the legacy advantage, which guarantees immunity at either six people or 13. He can’t use it and seems unlikely to get that far anyway, but he must gift it to someone on the other tribe, choosing Morgan.

Since their easiest target is gone, they need to find a second choice. Donathan’s name comes up. Knowing that will probably happen, he suggests Gonzalez. Although he is arguably the weakest link, the concern is that she would be less likely to listen to people.

Gonzalez gets up at Tribal and starts whispering. We’ve seen this before, but it is weird to see this early. What’s going to happen here should be pretty obvious, at least to more than half the tribe. If you don’t have this lined up by now, you aren’t going to change it by doing this.

Votes
Donathan
Gonzalez
Gonzalez
Gonzalez
Gonzalez
Gonzalez

With 5 votes, Gonzalez has been voted off the island. Seeing her behavior at Tribal Council, that result doesn’t seem particularly surprising.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of Survivor: Ghost Island Episode 2, which airs next on CBS.

Celebrity Big Brother Season 1 Winner

The first season of Big Brother: Quitters Edition has been as rushed and abridged as perhaps we can expect when dealing with people who think they are celebrities. There are still five people left heading into the final night, as we conclude with the same expedited nature of the show that we have seen all season. Omarosa, Ariadna, Ross, Marissa, and Mark are the final five. With all the dumb luck twists and hurrying through the season, it’s hard to really point to which of them has played the best game, though it hasn’t gone so fast that I can say any of them has grown on me to the point where I’m actually rooting for them.

The HOH competition requires them to be the last person standing on their skis. Marissa is predictably the first to fall. Ariadna is next. Ross puts a deal on the table, which seems silly at this point in the game. Night one maybe, but we’re way too far in by now. Except it actually works, no matter how much Omarosa sticks her nose into it. Ross wins HOH.

Nominations
Ariadna
Omarosa

The veto competition requires them to match days with events that happened in the house. They must try to get the fastest time possible, but also must get as many correct answers as possible. Mark (6 correct), Ariadna (4 correct), and Omarosa (1 correct) are eliminated based on the other two having a perfect score of 8 correct. Marissa finishes in 12:31. Ross wins the power of veto with a time of 5:42.

Veto Ceremony
Veto is not used.

Votes
Marissa: Omarosa
Mark: Omarosa

By a vote of 2-0, Omarosa has been evicted from the Big Brother house. Good riddance. Please stop showing up on my TV screen. She had the chance to stop this alliance, but she kept them intact both times she was HOH.

The final HOH competition normally takes place in three parts, but we don’t have time for that here. Instead, it is a single multiple guess question challenge.

Marissa is the only one to get the first question correct. Everybody gets the second, third, fourth, and fifth questions correct. Ross and Mark get the final question correct, bringing us to a three way tiebreaker. Everybody goes over, so Marissa wins HOH with the closest answer.

Marissa must now eliminate not one but two people and determine the other person sitting next to her in the finals. She chooses to evict Mark and Ariadna so that her ally Ross can come with her. Perhaps not the smartest decision but a loyal one.

Now the first jury since season 3 to know exactly what happened during the entire season returns to vote. There’s a reason for sequester (Danielle should have won that season), although it is broken because everybody is sequestered together and can spend weeks trying to influence the result.

Votes
Mark: Ross
Ariadna: Marissa
Omarosa: Marissa
James: Marissa
Brandi: Ross
Metta: Ross
Shannon: Marissa
Keshia: Marissa
Chuck: Marissa

The Celebrity Big Brother winner is Marissa Jaret Winokur.

As far as America’s favorite, the top three vote getters are Shannon, James, and Ross. I was expecting Shannon and James, but the actual winner is Ross.

Survivor: Heroes Vs. Healers Vs. Hustlers Winner

Ben playing another hidden immunity idol in Survivor: Heroes Vs. Healers VS. Hustlers took himself off the table as the most logical target, allowing Chrissy to get her way and get rid of Ashley instead.

That brings us down to a final five of Chrissy, Ben, Devon, Ryan, and Mike. I don’t find any of them overly compelling, but it’s not the worst lot either.

When they get back to camp, Ben immediately goes searching in the dark for another idol. At least make him earn it. This would be silly.

As he’s about to go to sleep, he sees the clue on the raft and finds his third idol by digging a little. Silly.

Chrissy approaches Ben and badly pretends to be his friend again. He does not buy it, and on the contrary, he says he wants to get rid of her. With an idol, he could easily be the lone vote to determine who is eliminated.

For the immunity challenge, they will leap into the water for a key, cross a balance beam and untie some knots, and unlock and solve a puzzle. As usual, it will all come down to the puzzle. Chrissy wins immunity and food. She invites Mike and Devon to join her.

Chrissy reveals her long useless super immunity idol to the reward group, and they decide to try to trick Ben into thinking they found an idol. Too late.

Ben can’t get rid of Chrissy, and he thinks Ryan is useless at challenges. That leaves him with the choice of Devon or Mike.

Devon proposes splitting the vote as a safety net and tossing at least one Mike’s way. He doesn’t really believe that Ben has given up like he claims. Ryan won’t buy into this plan, but Ryan has been one step behind for most of the game.

After Chrissy gives Mike her fake real idol, Ben pulls out the third hidden immunity idol he’s played. Still silly.

Votes
Ben (does not count)
Ben (does not count)
Ben (does not count)
Mike
Devon

It is tied. Devon would have just gone home if he didn’t follow his gut and see that something fishy was happening. Impressive read on the game, even though it was risky.

Votes
Devon
Mike
Mike

By a vote of 2-1, Mike has been voted off the island. Ben’s good at finding idols, but he can’t win when it comes to getting rid of the person he wants out.

Now that we are down to four, they are finally going to stop planting hidden immunity idols for people to accidentally stumble upon.

For the final immunity challenge, they will stack letter blocks on a wobbly platform to spell words. In addition to immunity, the winner will also receive the final secret advantage of the game. Seriously? We’re heading into the final Tribal. Do we really need another advantage?

Ryan is the first to spell the first word, and Ben is behind him. Then they both complete their second word, but Ryan drops three letters. Ben is the first to complete all three words, but one of the letters is upside down. When he goes to correct this, almost everything falls. He seemed to have a run away victory, but the others can breathe now. And then everybody else drops, allowing Ben to retake the lead. Before he drops as well. After more drops, Chrissy pulls ahead of the others, but Ben is not far behind her. Ben manages to pass her, but once again, as he goes to lock in his answer, his stack falls. Chrissy wins immunity.

That wasn’t the standard final immunity challenge, but they made those structures so sensitive that there was sure a good amount of drama to be had. She almost was sent home during the first vote because she was considered the weakest link, but this win ties her for the female record for immunity challenge wins at four.

It seems pretty obvious what is going to happen here. Ben is the outcast of the group, has a story because of his background, and although he hasn’t really done much other than find idols, continuing to save himself repeatedly may be a big selling point to some jury members.

But there’s a catch. Chrissy thought she just won an advantage. Actually, Ben just won an advantage. She will cast the only vote, which will determine one person to sit next to her. The other two must compete in a fire making challenge.

Returning to the Ryan can’t do anything discussion from earlier, he is once again going to be saved by the assumption he can’t make a fire. Chrissy wants to toss the stronger fire maker up against Ben, and she warns Devon of it. Devon attempts to practice, but he breaks the flint in the process.

Vote
Ryan

Ben is the first one to get a flame going, and Devon doesn’t seem to be getting anywhere. Ben wins and keeps himself in the game. Such a helpful advantage Chrissy won.

Devon seemed to be the best strategist, but he was taken down by a lame twist.

It hardly seems likely Ryan can get any votes. Ben has breen considered the threat by several people who have tried to get him out for a while, though in the process he hasn’t exactly been putting friendly faces on the jury. Then there’s Chrissy, who has a story of comeback and will likely be viewed as a hero by the women on the jury. Whoever wins won’t exactly be seen as a mastermind, but they did have specific niche aspects where they dominated.

Votes
Ben
Ryan
Chrissy
Chrissy
Ben
Ben
Ben

The Survivor: Heroes Vs. Healers Vs. Hustlers winner is Ben Driebergen. He gets credit for repeatedly saving himself from the firing squad, but that’s about the extent of it.