Okay y’all it’s finally here: THE MERGE! If you haven’t read my last post where I analyze every remaining castaway, stop what you’re doing and go read that now. Ok, are you ready? Let’s go!!
Too Long Didn’t Watch
Right off the bat, we are reminded that Dom is armed with many allies, a hidden immunity idol and the legacy advantage. We see everyone on a boat ride to the merge camp. They end up going to the Naviti camp, which is the best beach out there. The merge feast looks so freaking amazing! Dom makes this speech about how amazing it is to be there with everyone, and Chris immediately follows up with a speech of his own. They really are insistent on measuring their dicks against each other. I’m SO over this alpha male competition and can’t wait for it to hopefully be over by the end of the episode!
Chris ends up picking a random buff at the feast that reveals that there’s a secret at treemail. There’s an idol at Ghost Island but can only be gotten at night. A boat will pick Chris up and he’ll be gone for several hours. He’s willing to risk it all, because he thinks he’ll be a threat anyway. I don’t think he’s wrong.
The core of Naviti get together, and Wendell wants them to all work to get rid of Michael or Libby so he’s trying to mediate the brewing tension between Dom and Chris. He sits both of them down, and the peace talks do not go well at all! Chris completely shuts down their proposition to have peace, refusing to outright target Libby, Jenna or Michael. In a confessional, Wendell declares war against Chris, while Chris says he’s too suave for Wendell and Dom’s bullshit.
It’s night time, and Chris’ boat is ready to transport him to Ghost Island. It’s so creepy seeing Ghost Island at night. Once he gets there, we see J.T.’s Hidden Immunity idol that he left at camp during tribal council, the epitome of being cocky, before being blindsided. How ironic would it be if Chris got blindsided in similar fashion. I mean, he would be the one to not reverse this curse. There’s a twist to this idol though: the idol only lasts one night, but if he risks his vote at the next council, he can potentially gain more rounds to use the idol. There’s a 50% chance each time he picks a bamboo. Chris ends up losing his vote for this tribal council, but can use his idol at one of the next two.
Back at camp, Dom accuses Chris of bossing people around while being lazy. Chris campaigns to Laurel, Angela and Desiree while Domenick campaigns to Libby and Jenna. We get multiple scenes of them both trashing each other in confessionals and to others. This is so intense.
When Jenna and Libby are alone, they talk honestly: Libby says that Chris is more of a straight shooter where as Dom is more likely to lie to others. She’s not wrong. Jenna is very happy that the attention is off of Mololo for once and that they have some amount of influence over who leaves between Chris and Dom.
We get to the immunity challenge which is obviously balance and endurance based. The individual immunity necklace looks basic as fuck. Yes, I said it. You thought it. Jenna, Donathan, Desiree and Angela quickly drop out during the first 5 minute round. They have 15 seconds to transition to the next balance beam without dropping their tiki. Sebastian drops out during the next 5 minute interval. Domenick, Michael, Chris, Laurel and Wendell all end up being unable to make the transition. Chelsea, Libby and Kellyn are on the final balance beam! The wind looks to be blowing so hard that it’s giving me anxiety. Chelsea finally drops! Kellyn has the ugliest grimace on her face as she struggles to keep her tiki still, and I’m just so stressed out. Kellyn ends up winning with a round of applause.
Brace yourselves! THIS is when the drama begins! Chris ends up taking EVERYONE to the well besides Domenick and Wendell to try to split the vote between those two! This is so hilariously stupid watching a line of 11 people walk to the water well. Chris calls it a full-proof plan, which means it will undoubtedly fail. Wendell and Dom realize that they’re alone which pisses Wendell off. He reveals his idol to Domenick and promises that they can use it together. He says it’s in his pocket? How is it in his pocket?! Did he deconstruct the entire necklace?!
Donathan tells Dom the split-vote plan and that he and Laurel are on board for Chris. Dom is shocked to hear from him that he shouldn’t trust Jenna and Libby who seem to be on board to vote Dom out. The Naviti girls: Kellyn, Desiree, Angela and Chelsea think they should pull a fast one on the boys during all the confusion and simply vote Libby out instead. Kellyn and Desiree make A LOT of sense here! That would be a masterful move in the midst of this stupid chaos. They say Libby is someone that will be hard to boot later, so why not take the chance now while they have the vote split.
There are so many potential idols in play: Chris, Dom, Wendell and Michael with all of them feeling like they might need to use it tonight. Everyone packs up for tribal council with no one knowing what the hell is going to happen. Will idols be played? Will Chris or Dom go home? Will we simply revert back to a Mololo boot in Libby or Michael? I can barely hold my glass of beer, because I’m shaking. Let’s find out…
We get to tribal council, and we’re reminded that this is Chris’ first time ever visiting Tribal Council. Donathan says how mind boggling it is to keep track of the social connections after switching so much. I totally agree with him, and I’m not even out there. Sebastian’s long hair is absolutely GORGEOUS! I paused my screen for a solid 2 minutes to stare.
Domenick owns up to how horrible of a mistake he made on Day 1 with criticizing Chris. He then gives us a recap of their entire feud and reveals that this is a showdown. Chris reminds us how disloyal Dom has been after coming back to camp to Angela being blindsided. Chris is not lying about this. They did betray Angela first. How quickly these sheep have forgotten. Angela says that there are big plans but she doesn’t know how many little plans there are. Chris gives a big speech about trusting your gut, and I hope his is telling him to play the idol. We head into the vote.
Domenick literally YELLS his vote for Chris and I laugh out loud while his tribemates squirm from embarrassment. These two guys are so annoying. Wendell tells Chris to stop rapping, put the pen down, he’s garbage etc! Oh my God Wendell snatches all of Chris’ edges with his vote! THE SHADE! Domenick ends up playing his Legacy Advantage to remain safe. If Chris doesn’t play his idol, he’s an idiot. Because he’s an idiot, he doesn’t play his idol. Jeff reads 2 votes for Chris… 2 votes for Libby… and the rest goes towards Chris! You don’t get poetic justice as juicy as this y’all.
Next Time On Survivor: Laurel is upset that Wendell and Domenick didn’t clue her in on their litany of hidden immunity idols and advantages. Also, we get a classic gross food eating challenge where the survivors literally eat eyeballs.
Cho’s Top Takeaways
An Ode To Chris
I know you’re probably sick of hearing about Chris, but it’s almost over! What we should really take away from Chris’ ouster tonight is the danger of being overconfident. Chris is like Bradley but way less smart. Chris spent his entire time out on the island attempting to steam roll his competition: he over-talked, over-competed, over-compensated and over-did every aspect of the game. I think this is in part due to his personality. He’s just one of those type A alpha male pricks that can’t help himself. The worst part about Chris as a character this season is that his anger and vitriol towards Dom is 100% justified: he IS a sneak; he IS untrustworthy; and he IS a threat to win the game. Chris’ awful social game is what prevented him from being a worthy adversary of Dom. Survivor is not designed for people like him to do well. Bonus: take a look at sexy Chris not taking Wendell’s advice.
The Naviti Girls Alliance
If you were paying attention, you can connect Libby receiving 2 votes from Angela and Desiree to the Naviti girls alliance. They had the right rationale behind targeting her and their serious consideration to place a plurality of votes onto Libby should be noted. I knew that Kellyn was a thinker, but to see all 4 of those ladies working together to formulate some high-end strategic thinking was impressive to me. What were your thoughts on this undercover plan?
Libby is in quite the pickle of a paradox! Everyone views her as threat due to her charm and persuasive abilities. However, she has very few allies and hasn’t she shown any of these abilities yet. As I mentioned in my last post, I think this perception has been wrongly placed. She has her original allies Michael and Jenna working with her. She potentially has Sebastian who is connected to Jenna. But… that’s it! We see that she doesn’t even have Donathan or Laurel who immediately threw her under the bus to Domenick which makes her very little of a threat to anyone right now. What are your thoughts on Libby’s position as a player?
Letting The Dust Settle
As I predicted, the war between Dom and Chris was severely one-sided with Chris being the obvious loser. All the potential allies and influence he had was lost due to Dom’s superior social game. The more interesting question is where do we go from here? Lines were definitely not drawn quite yet since no one was on Chris’ side. Will we see Naviti solidify back as a core group to pick of the Mololos or will Dom and Wendell be challenged as the power couple that they currently are?
I’m going to end it here before I ramble on for too long! What were your top takeaways from the merge episode?! Did I miss any important notes? Do let me know all of your opinions in the comments below!
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