Survivor: HHH - Episode 5 Recap

The Past Will Eat You Alive

By Jim Van Nest

October 31, 2017

Nice knowing you. Or not knowing you.

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Hello good people and thank you for joining me for Episode 5 of Survivor: HHH! After getting off to a pretty slow start, Survivor knew just how to shake things up last week: a tribe swap! Our first ever 3 tribe to 3 tribe swap shuffled up the Hero, Healer and Hustler decks and may have seriously changed the game in the process.

We saw new relationships and alliances being built: Ryan and Chrissy, Ben and Lauren and Devon and Ashley to name a few. And all this while the 6 original Healers all try to stay in control at their respective new tribes. After a loss in the immunity challenge, all eyes focused on the Levu tribe (that's the Blue one) as a showdown took place between Healer Joe and Hero Alan. When all was said and done, Devon had his vote taken away by Jessica; Joe played an idol for himself and spark plug Alan was forced to take the walk of shame to join Patrick, Simone and Katrina on that pre-merge trip.


Previews have centered on a sweet inch-worm challenge, the budding alliance between Ashley and Devon, Dr. Mike finding an idol and something coming back to haunt Marine/Hero Ben. Should be another wild ride, so let's get right to it!

After that crazy Tribal, there's nowhere else to begin but at Levu beach, right? Ashley and Devon are very good sports about everything and give Joe the "attaboy" on his move. Ashley confirms that they're now 2 v 2 on this tribe. But, the 4 remaining members do appear to be getting along with no hard feelings coming from Alan's boot.

Day 2 dawns on Yawa beach and Ben's working on the dishes. As he comes back to camp, we see Lauren tending the fire with a big piece of bamboo as part of it. I've watched 34+ seasons of Survivor and tonight I learned that apparently bamboo makes ridiculously loud popping sounds when burned in a fire. Many Survivors have said it sounds very much like gunfire. This is not a good thing for ex-marine Ben. As this thing pops and cracks, Ben freaks out a little and makes a mad dash for the beach. He tells us that, having seen actual combat during his tenure in the Marine Corps, he does have a bit of PTSD and he has an issue with loud noises like that. It's one of the actual real moments that will show up on Survivor from time to time. It has nothing to do with strategy, challenges, a million dollars or anything else in the game. It's a real person having a real moment that is actually very revealing and touching. To most of us who have never served, those who do are kind of larger than life. They're tough, they're seasoned and they are definitely the strongest of the strong. So, to see this bad-ass Marine brought almost to tears by some bamboo popping in the fire, it's really a wakeup call. What these people go through for our protection and our way of life can and does have long-lasting effects on them in ways that the rest of us can't possibly fathom. Ben lays it out for us in confessional. He says that people who haven't been through it can't possibly know what it's like to go through combat, to have people try to kill you. Aside from winning the million and providing for his family, Ben really hopes that his time out in the game can provide a little comfort to other vets. He wants them to know that there is a life out there. A future out there. Happiness out there for them. For all the people that still like to shit on Survivor as a show, THIS is why we continue to watch. Stories like this are what set Survivor apart from the rest of the reality dreck out there. Let the credits roll!

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