Survivor: Millennials vs Gen X - Episode Recap
Episode 7 - I Will Destroy You
By Jim Van Nest, Gen X'er
November 9, 2016

Overthinking everything.

Hello, good people, and welcome to Survivor: Taylor's revenge! When last we spoke, Adam lowered the boom on #FigTails and sent Figgy packing for the pre-jury vacation. The assumption is that Taylor will not be happy with this result and may decide to seek revenge. And the previews, in fact, suggest this to be true. Even the episode title, "I will destroy you" is a quote from Taylor. I submit to you that Taylor doesn't have what it takes to exact revenge on Adam, but I guess tonight's episode will tell, right?

Aside from the Figgy ouster, things are jumping at all of the camps. As a round up, Adam has joined Ken and Jessica in a power alliance on the purple Takali tribe. He's also holding onto the original Millennial hidden idol. Over at the orange Vanua tribe, Chris and David joined with Zeke to oust CeCe. Chris and Zeke have a sweet Oklahoma alliance working and David has the old Gen X hidden idol. Tonight seems to suggest that Zeke and David might find some common ground to set up another power alliance. Ikabula is the green tribe and we've seen little of them, actually, because they just keep winning challenges. What we have seen, though, is that Michaela is a beast in challenges, fire starting and sneaking up on people finding idols. Jay seems to be the brains of the outfit and he has possession of the green hidden idol. Will was with Jay when he found the idol, so I guess he has a claim to it. Hannah is experiencing anxiety attacks in challenges she's not participating in. And Bret and Sunday appear to be dead Gen X'ers walking.

I think that covers about everything. Now, the captain has asked that everyone take their seats and buckle their safety belts. We should be checking in with Takali after Tribal and this could be a bumpy ride. Ready? Let's do this!

As expected, we start with the Takali tribe and Taylor is bummed and pissed. Adam pulls him aside to talk to him. I'm not sure what Adam was trying to accomplish here, but he goes on and on about how bad he screwed them over. Ultimately, he does nothing to make Taylor feel better. He actually only makes it worse. But it seems like that was his plan, which makes no sense. As we head to the opening credits, we get the episode title from Taylor - "I will destroy you." To quote Kimmi from Second Chance, "No, Pumpkin. No."

We come back to the Vanua tribe having breakfast on Day 19. David tells us that he plans to get Michelle out at the next vote, but he worries about Chris. So, he takes Zeke aside with the plan to pull him in closer. And what better way to do that than to tell him about his idol, which he does. Zeke is thrilled to get this information saying that if you can't have an idol, it's always good to know where it is and know it's with an ally. And just like that, we seem to have a new power couple in the game.

We cut away to our first Probst Sighting!! Everyone gets a look at the new Takali tribe, with Figgy voted out. With all the different reactions, Jeff has to ask Michaela about it, since she famously said that they should be able to figure it out. She comes back with the fact that sometimes you say what you're supposed to say, but that ultimately, it was time for Figgy to go a while ago. #ByeFelicia

Anyway, let's get to the challenge, shall we? Tribes will be working together to unwind some bags of balls. Once they have all three balls, they'll have to get all three balls through a long net. Then take those balls and lay them up on a rig made of a couple 2x4s, so not so easy to land the balls on. They'll be playing for a meal. Cooked for them by a chef. Shrimps, kebabs, all the fixin's. Second place gets some kebabs. They all decide it's worth playing for. Bret and Sunday decide they'll sit out the challenge and we're ready to go.

Ikabula gets off to a great start as Jay just stands on the shoulders of Will and Michaela to get the balls off the spiral rack. Adam does pretty well, but nowhere near as fast as Jay. Zeke and then David have a helluva time getting their balls. Somewhere along the line, purple takes the lead and Ken makes the first shot into the long net. Chris and Co. have now caught up as well and Chris sinks the first ball. Now in last place, Jay finally sinks his first shot. Zeke and Michelle are quick to get the balls out of the net and they have opened up a nice lead. Chris is the first one to get the third ball in. Ken is next to get his third in. Ikabula is still lagging behind trying to get their second ball out. Chris is shooting for Vanua and scores the first two balls before anyone else even starts shooting. As Ken lands his first ball, Chris lands #3 - Vanua wins immunity.

Ken is shooting while Will and Hannah continue to struggle with the net. They finally get through and Michaela starts shooting. She scores their first, while Ken lands his second. Michaela ties it up and then before Ken can do anything, she lands the third to win reward for Ikabula. As the tribes head back to camp, Michaela tells us that she's happy to have skewers, but she's a little worried that people might think she's the one to beat.

All right, let's check in with the winning Vanua tribe. They walk into camp and the chef is already there and cooking. David and Zeke are thrilled with the food. They just slam food and they don't stop. Chris also. And once they're done we get the inevitable scene of all the guys belching and farting, while Michelle sits downwind wondering exactly what the hell she signed up for. As this is going on, she worries that she is the odd person out in her tribe. And she's right to worry.

We leave Vanua to join a super serious political discussion at Takali between Ken and Taylor. Um, what? There was nothing else in this episode to show us? Anyway, this leads into Taylor offering up his loyalty to Jessica and Ken. He tells them he has no allegiances come the merge and that he's willing to shake their hand and tell them that he'll never write their names down. Jessica tells us that they accepted Taylor's handshake and she wonders if Taylor is smart enough to double cross them and if this goofy surfer dude might not be a better, more controllable ally than Adam.

The next day we check in with Ikabula. They're celebrating the 20th day. And they are a real close knit group. Hannah tells us that they are very close, but there is the underlying knowledge that it's 4-2 in favor of the Millennials. We join a "getting to know you" conversation. Bret has told everyone that he works in a funeral home and Hannah doesn't really believe him so she's grilling him about his work. She tells us and her Millennials that she is pretty sure he's a cop - which he is. We then have a discussion about it and Will talks her into not trying to blow up Bret's game, just wait for him to tell them if he is, in fact, a cop.

We come back from the next break to another Probst Sighting! Today's immunity challenge is an obstacle course of sorts. They'll start off shooting coconuts into a big net. Once it's heavy enough, a flag will drop with numbers on it. Those numbers will release a key and they will use that to unlock a slingshot. They'll then use the slingshot to shoot sandbags at some targets. First two tribes to hit all their targets will win immunity. Ikabula will sit out Hannah and Will this time around.

We begin and it takes a decent amount of time to fill up the baskets with coconuts. Purple is the first tribe to get their numbers. On his second try, Adam unlocks the key to open up the slingshot. Green is next and Michaela gets to work on the combination and she gets it on the first shot. Taylor is using the slingshot and missing while Zeke finally lands the last coconut to release the numbers. Skip ahead and purple has three of their five targets and green hasn't hit one yet. Michelle has a hell of a time figuring out the combination, but finally does it. Ken finishes off the challenge and wins immunity for purple and this has become a two-tribe race for second. Green just can't hit a target and all of a sudden, orange has a 4-2 lead on hitting their targets. And with one last shot, Chris and Vanua win immunity sending Ikabula to Tribal Council for the first time. As we head to break, Jay tells us that it's between Bret and Sunday, obviously, and that it looks like Bret will have to go.

So, when we come back, it's time to play "It's Anyone But Bret." Except when we come back, no one is doing anything. They're all just sitting in a row on a log. For like a half hour. No one moves, no one speaks. Sunday narrates, letting us know that it's either her or Bret tonight and she hates not being in control of her own fate. We finally join them in conversation and Bret is saying that they have to vote for each other. NOOOOO! You don't HAVE to vote for each other. There's two of you. If the others decide to split the vote, you could totally do something. You never just give up and accept your fate.

Next up is the Millennials talking about what to do. Michaela lays out rocks and shells to talk about who to vote out. She tries to tell them that if they play it right, it doesn't matter who they vote out. At the end of the conversation, the decision is to split the votes and then dump Bret on the revote. Jay tells us about Michaela's talk and as he's talking it out, it hits him that she's really smart and that she's good at challenges. He decides that maybe she should go home before the merge. So, he takes this plan to Will. They seem to be on the same page about this. They also seem to agree that they cannot tell Hannah. But as they talk, Jay also says that Michaela is a solid alliance. She doesn't lie and she's been with him since the beginning. As they head to Tribal, he tells us how conflicted he is and that this could define the rest of his game. Um, yeah, right. Buh bye Bret.

We get to Tribal and Jeff goes straight to the obvious. Four Millennials, two Gen Xers. Michaela and Jay both say that seeing what the other tribes have done makes them trust their new tribe even more, since the old divisions don't seem to exist anymore. Michaela loves everyone in this tribe and it's all Jeff's fault that they have to vote someone out. Sunday and Bret know that they are totally on the bottom and that everyone has made them feel welcome and part of the group, but they know what time it is. Jeff asks if this new maverick-style game is the way the game is played now. Will suggests that while the Tony Vlachos style game worked for him, it's dangerous for anyone else. Jay says that his vote tonight is coming from his gut. Will, Jay and Michaela all say that they feel that the tribe will be stronger moving forward after this vote and Michaela has more kind words to say about Bret and Sunday. And on that note, it's now time to vote.

The only vote we see is Hannah's vote for Bret saying that she hopes everyone keeps to their word and that she wishes she could have gone farther with him. Other than that, all votes are kept secret. Jeff tallies the votes and asks about a hidden immunity idol. Obviously, no one plays one. First vote: Bret. Second vote: Bret. Then Michaela, and she is taken aback by that. The next vote also comes up Michaela. Surprising, but not as, if you consider Bret and Sunday just picked her as their person to vote for. When the fifth vote comes up Michaela, she blurts out a high pitched, "Whaaaaat?" and turns around to look at Jay. Before Jeff can read the last vote, Michaela looks at Jay and says, "Did you do that?" He stares right back into her eyes and like a complete badass mafia boss says, "Yeah. I did it." There's a good five to seven seconds where they are just locked in the ultimate stare down.

While this is happening, Hannah is blown away and starting to freak out saying that she had nothing to do with it. But the stare down just keeps going. Seriously, I was already liking Jay, but this was absolutely amazing. He just looked her dead in the face as if to say, "Yeah. I did it. And I'd do it again and also - there's nothing you can do about it." This was one the damn coolest moments ever at a Tribal Council and definitely the best moment of this season. Finally, Jeff reads the last vote for Michaela. On the way out, she lets him know how stupid he was and how he just destroyed his own game. Meanwhile - Hannah is still freaking out. And honestly, I have to wonder how much of that was real and how much might have been a tad exaggerated. It's like she watched a season with Eliza Orleans on it and practiced the alien eyes in the mirror before she got there. I mean, I get it, you didn't expect the move. But it wasn't hard to figure out.

Now, let's talk about this move a bit. I'm gonna go against the grain on this one and give my full support for the move. First off, the merge has to be coming soon. Is Michaela a person you want to turn loose on the individual challenges? Sure, she won't win them all, but she is a challenge beast! Second off, she was never really with you, Figgy and Taylor. She confirmed that at the reward challenge when she said it was time for Figgy to go. Third, Michaela is wicked smart and has a plan in this game. And worse, she doesn't seem very willing to collaborate on her plan. It seems more like a "do what I say" kind of situation. Fourth, she cannot NOT let people know exactly how she's feeling at any second of any day. If she doesn't like someone, they know it. Everyone knows it. That's a wild card you might not want to have to work around in your core alliance. And finally, she knows you have the idol. She hasn't told anyone and amazingly didn't tell anyone on the way out of the game. So, now you're back to just you and your boy knowing about the idol. Overall, this was an amazing television moment, and I think it was a great move.

Next time on Survivor: Just in time too, 'cause it's the MERGE!! Zeke tells us that it's time to start crushing people's dreams. The Gen Xers are feeling the heat of being very outnumbered and they seem to be targeting the group of Taylor and Jay. Meanwhile, Hannah wants revenge on Jay for the Michaela vote. So, with Chris, Bret and Hannah targeting Jay next week, about all we can say for sure is that Jay is safe. Until next week, kiddies...take care!