Survivor: HHH - Episode 8 Recap
Playing With The Devil
By Jim Van Nest
November 22, 2017
Hello good people and welcome to this late edition of the Box Office Prophets Survivor: HHH Recap. Apologies for being late with this article, but sometimes real life gets in the way of Survivor life.
Anyway - this season is finally starting to pick up and I'm pretty stoked about it. The pre-merge was pretty much a yawner, but the post-merge is shaping up to be quite exciting. Last week, we saw the Heroes and Hustlers gang up on the Healers and take out Jessica. With Joe holding an idol and worries that he might use it to save Cole, Chrissy, Devon and Ryan thought it best to target Cole's lady and Jessica was sent out of the game. As it stands now, it kinda looks like this hybrid hero-hustler deal could actually last a while. Previews show a sweet scuffle under the tribe flag as Cole wrestles with Chrissy for, what I'm guessing is an idol. I'll be interested to see exactly how those 2 ended up in an idol hunt at the same place at the same time. That being said, let's get to the action, shall we?
We begin tonight's show after Tribal and Joe is impressed with the move to take out Jessica. And he seems to be giving all the credit to Ben. To back that up, Ben tells us that he and Lauren made a play and it worked out perfectly. Day 20 dawns on Solewa beach and while the guys are sitting around the fire, Lauren is doing some hammering on the shelter and whaddaya know, she found this note tucked in the bundle of nails. I expected an idol, but instead, it's an advantage that allows her to give up her vote at the next Tribal Council and in return, she'll carry a blank piece of parchment to a later Tribal Council and have 2 votes. She's pretty stoked about having the extra vote down the road, but is a little concerned about how she'll play off the non-vote at the next Tribal.
All right - we're wasting no time tonight. We come back from the first break to a Probst Sighting! Today's challenge will see the players climbing a tower, maneuvering through some obstacles where they'll then turn around and slingshot sandbags at some targets. First tribe to hit all targets wins reward of a special spaghetti dinner with bread and salad. They'll be divided into 2 teams, with one person sitting out. This person will automatically get to have spaghetti. And wouldn't you know it, Joe pulls the short straw and he'll eat spaghetti no matter who wins. Each team employs a different strategy here. Ben and the red team decide to keep shooting til they hit. Ryan and the blue team run up there take one shot and come down whether it hits or not. Apparently, everyone has to take a shot - but they don't have to hit. The blue team sent its weaker players first to satisfy this requirement. Red has 3 hits before blue gets their first. But as Ashley struggles for blue, JP and Devon start tag teaming the targets for blue and it's not long before they...win...reward! JP, Devon, Cole, Chrissy and Ryan will be heading out for a spaghetti dinner with Joe!! But, before they head out, there's a twist to this reward. This meal is a "family style" meal - meaning that all the food is in on big pile. They'll also eat 1 person at a time, alone. So, anyone can eat as much as they want and no one will know. The final twist, since Joe won the lottery, he'll decide the eating order. Aside from the fact that I hate spaghetti, this configuration pretty much makes this the worst reward ever. As we head to break, Joe tells us that he has a huge target on his back and it's time to get some good will, if possible.
We come back from break to see how Joe will break up the food eaters. He tells everyone that Devon goes first, since it's his birthday. He tells them he'll go last, since he didn't even play in the challenge. The rest of the order will be revealed to us, I guess. We watch Devon eat and he goes to town on this food. Admittedly, he probably ate more than he should have. And as he gets up to leave, the camera pans down to a letter peeking out from under the spaghetti (not a letter like you get in the mail, but the letter B on the plate itself). Devon doesn't see it. In typical JP fashion, he doesn't either. It's not until Cole comes in 3rd that someone notices that there is writing on the plate. The note on the plate tells him that there is an idol under the tribe flag. Ahhhhh...that makes sense. To try to hide the clue, Cole takes the napkin that wrapped the bread and lays it down on the plate and piles the spaghetti back on top. Chrissy comes in looking for a clue of some sort. After searching for a while, she does find it under the napkin. Oddly enough, she thinks she's the only one to see it. Because, of course, everyone serves spaghetti on a napkin. Anyway, Ryan is up next and also finds the clue. And he's the first one that actually thinks to just get rid of the plate - and he does. Joe will never see the clue, and that's a good thing for everyone else. They don't want that dude to have another idol. As Joe eats, we stay on the beach as Chrissy tried to see if Ryan saw the clue also. And honestly, if I were in a movie theater and Chrissy were to whisper during the show, the way she does on Survivor, I'd call an usher. She may as well just ask everyone there is they saw the idol clue. Under the spaghetti. On the plate. You know, the one that says there's an idol under the tribe flag, back at camp, buried in the sand. Needless to say, Cole over hears her and knows what they're talking about, so it'll be on when they get back to camp.
So we get back to camp and 3 people are trying to figure out how to get alone at the tribe flag. As everyone talks about the reward, Cole excuses himself to use the bathroom, Ryan dashes out to the flag and starts digging. With JP walking right next to him, clueless as all get out, Ryan finds the idol, tucks it in his pants and walks away. As he does this, Chrissy comes down and he tells her to "cover that up" meaning the hole. He also tells her, "I got it." So, as she starts to cover the hole up, Cole sees this and assumes she's digging for the idol. Knowing that his ass is on the line, Cole runs down there and dives in to try to beat her to finding the idol. Before long, Chrissy's yelling for JP to come get it. Ben comes in and tries to help. Meanwhile, Ryan is just watching knowing full well that there is no idol under there. As they get up, Ben is 100% convinced that Cole found the idol. Back around the fire, Ben is trying to blow Cole's game up. Cole tells them he doesn't have the idol and that it's still buried there somewhere, but no one believes him. Apparently he tucked his shirt in which was Ben's big clue that he found the idol. So, in not finding the idol, Cole now has the entire tribe worried that he does have an idol and he may have just saved his own ass by NOT finding an idol. He's so shaky and unbelievable in denying the idol that all he does is convince everyone even more that he has it. If he's doing this on purpose, it's brilliant. To make them think that he has an idol but is too stupid to lie about it convincingly - all the while NOT having the idol - this could be a major play for him.
And already, we've come to the 2nd Probst Sighting of the episode as it's Immunity challenge time! Today's challenge is another balance challenge. Each player will stand on a narrow beam while balancing a statue with a very long pole. As the challenge progresses, they'll move backward forcing them to use a longer length of pole to hold up their statue. These challenges may have a decent amount of drama to them as you watch, but they're boring as hell to write about. Shortly after the challenge starts, Dr. Mike drops out and so does Joe. Uh oh - for the first time, Joe's vulnerable. Hmmm... Devon is next out of the challenge followed by Lauren and Ryan. All of this within the first 5 minutes of the challenge. After 10 minutes and the first step back, Ashley drops out. Chrissy and Ben are the next casualties. This leaves Desi, Cole and JP. And just like that, Desi drops out of the challenge. After a couple more minutes, JP loses his footing and Cole wins immunity! And just at the perfect time, right? As we head to break, Chrissy tells us they're really bummed that Cole won, but with Desi, Joe and Mike still there, there should be no issue taking out a Healer.