Survivor: Cook Islands

Ruling the Roost

By Jim Van Nest

October 6, 2006

The folks on the AVP Tour are going to laugh about this all season.

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Hello, good people! When we parted last week, our good friend and challenge thrower Ozzy was forced to deal with the fact that his girl, Cecelia, is gone. I can't help but wonder how much he wishes he had Billy's vote last time. Not to say they'd have ended up on the same tribe, but it's possible. Of course, we'll never know, because Ozzy thought it would be a good idea to throw a challenge and send the "useless" Billy home. Have I mentioned that you NEVER throw a challenge?

Speak of the devil, we open the show at Aitu after the vote and Ozzy looks like someone ran over his dog. He last his one true ally in the show and to rub salt in the wound, someone asks him if he wants to catch some crabs in the morning (not those kind of crabs, ya pervs). He mentions to us that they should vote him out soon so he doesn't have to keep catching their food for them. Awwww, poor baby. Like Nate said, "Karma's a bizzle." Shouldn't have thrown the challenge!

When we come back from break, we join Candice as she gets back to camp. I'm not sure she had even laid her bag down before the Inquisition began. Why did they choose her? What does she think? The consensus in camp is that Parvati and Adam arranged it to protect her. Candice does a horrible job of playing stupid by saying she never thought of it. Ya know, if that's the best she can do, she should just get ready to go and she can spend time playing stupid (poorly) in Loser's Lounge while Parvati flirts (poorly) with her.

Our first stop at Raro finds all the women working to improve the shelter, while the guys sit around drinking and eating all the coconut. Parvati makes note of the fact that they feel pretty safe, because the tribe needs them. We join JP, Adam and Brad discussing whether or not the girls are annoyed with them. Between the three of them, they decide that it doesn't matter. They have a four man alliance and they're so much stronger than the other team. A couple of things to note here: Nate was not involved in this conversation. I don't know if that means anything or not, but they made sure to show us Nate walking up toward the end of it. Also, this is leading into a challenge...and I can't help but think JP and his band of strongmen are about to get beat.

Probst sighting! Well, it looks like today's reward challenge is another play on the ole people linked to a rope that twists and turns around an obstacle course challenge. Two people will be attached to the rope, once they're through; someone will swim out to a barrel, dive down and get a decoding wheel. When they get back, they'll use the decoding wheel to decipher a message. First tribe to get the message will win three blankets, two pillows, and a hammock and will get to send someone from the other tribe to Exile Island. If we're lucky, the message will be "Next Season We're Going to Have More Original Challenges".

Becky and Candice will compete against Jenny and Christina during the rope portion of the challenge. Readers ready....go! It's like I could write this show...Aitu gets through the rope portion way before Raro and Ozzy heads out to get the wheel, giving Aitu an almost insurmountable lead. Amazingly enough, Aitu squanders the lead, until my boy, Yul steps up. Between Yul and Cao Boi, the puzzle is solved, "Last Castaways Back Cast One Away." And there is much rejoicing. And Adam packs his things for Exile Island. *Yawn*

We join the celebration back at Aitu camp and Flicka is feeling especially good about the win, because she says the tribe is a bit intimidated by the brawn at Raro. We then head out on a fishing trip where Ozzy brings in nine of 11 fish, and is beginning to have a Rich Hatch complex going on. "I provide the food; they can't get rid of me. Hahahahah." Yeah? Not so much, my friend. That hasn't worked for anyone since, well, I have to go back to Rich Hatch.

At Raro, heads are down about losing a challenge, and things are made worse by JP sitting around like the Queen of Sheba and ordering everyone around. He basically yells at them to cook, to stoke the fire, to get him things and to pretty much wait on him hand and foot. Parvati has had enough, and you can tell by their faces that Jenny and Rebecca have too. As night falls, we join the only two still awake, Nate and Parvati, in some strategy talk. Nate tells her how the guys have an alliance. At the same time, he tells her that he's got her back, though. I have to say, I really didn't think Nate would fall for her act, but it seems that he has. On the flip side, there might actually be some legitimate sparks there. In his confessional, Nate tells us that he thinks there might be, but he's not gonna act like some "dum-dum." As we get back to the conversation, they discuss how JP is in charge and he certainly knows it. Nate convinces her to not worry about it and "let the king sit pretty." As long as he thinks he's large and in charge, he's not thinking about the game. And right here is why I've said from Day 1 that I thought Nate had a good chance of going far in this game. He's a right-thinking kind of guy and as long as he keeps his head in the game, he'll do well.


Back at Aitu, we join the folks walking in the woods, "See, those are the boobies." Yep, that's an actual quote from Ozzy. Apparently he's talking about a family of birds and their nest. The thought of eggs has everyone wondering what's in the nest. Cao Boi decides to climb the tree to see. He has no need for the eggs; he really just wants to see if he can do it. Well, he does do it, and he knocks the nest out of the tree, spilling a newborn bird to the ground. Jonathan is like really hurt by it, it seems. So he puts the bird back in the nest and gets it up to Cao Boi, who puts the nest back in the tree. Cao Boi is feeling pretty bad about it. "I should know better." And because I know some of you are thinking it, I'll go ahead and kill the old wives' tale about a mother bird shunning her baby if touched by a human. It's simply not true. So, don't think that this poor baby is doomed. Mama Boobie will raise her little man up to be a full grown boobie.

Another Probst sighting. And it's time for another extremely convoluted immunity challenge. Of course, it's original, so I guess I should shut up and start describing. The challenge starts with four people putting together a stretcher puzzle. They'll carry it through the jungle to the beach, where one person will swim out to a mast where another tribe member is shackled. They'll release that member and the two will swim back to shore pulling a life preserver. They will need to put the rescued tribe member on the stretcher and carry them back through the jungle. Once back at the start, the remaining three members will have to start a fire to burn through a piece of twine that will lower a tribe flag. Got it? Good. Here are the lineups: with Christina sitting out, Raro has all the guys working on the stretcher to save Poverty (I know that's not her name, but if Jeff's gonna pronounce it that way, I'm gonna spell it that way)
which leaves Rebecca, Stephanie and Jenny to build the fire. For Aitu, Candice will be saved by Jonathan, Jessica, Ozzy and Yul, leaving Becky, Sundra and Cao Boi to start the fire. Without having seen the challenge yet, I think leaving Cao Boi behind for the fire is a pretty good idea. I could be wrong, though. For immunity, readers ready?

Raro gets a bit of a lead on the puzzle portion, and JP hits the water for Raro, Ozzy for Aitu. Once again, Ozzy proves himself to be a stud in the water by catching and passing JP. Ozzy and Candice really separate themselves on the swim back. As they start on the fires, Cao Boi uses the ax on the flint inside a coconut shell and gets a flame real quick. As they start to stack husk under the twine, the fire goes out leaving just smoke. Like something out of a movie, Cao Boi start swinging the husk around, I can only assume to give extra air to the smoldering husk. Meanwhile, Jenny has sliced her hand open with her ax. Seconds later, Cao Boi's fire blazes. Raro doesn't even have a spark yet. And with that, Cao Boi's fire burns the twine and Raro has a date at Tribal.

At Raro, it's time to play, um...I'm not sure what it's time to play. I have no idea what this tribe will be thinking. Stephanie drops a bomb on the tribe that she's the reason they lost the challenge and that she's the weak link. It doesn't sound like she wants to go, but that she feels like she should. Nate is conflicted over this because she's one of his girls, but at the same time, if she wants the vote maybe he should give it to her. As a tribe, they decide to let her know they'll vote for her. The goal is to be as respectful to her as she was to them. So naturally, JP heads off to the tent to sleep. While he naps, Jenny and Rebecca have a chat about how voting Stephanie out will weaken the girls. And there we have it; Rebecca has figured out that there are five girls and four guys. Hmmm...interesting how that works. The wild card is Parvati. Will she join the girls, or stick with Nate and the guys? She thinks it's a bad move for the tribe. And I have to say, I agree. As much of a tool as JP is, he does give the tribe a better chance to win than Stephanie does. With Parvati a wild card, the girls make an interesting strategic move and pull Brad into the mix. So, with Parvati and Brad as potential votes, we head to Tribal and I'm pretty sure that Stephanie's gone. But I've been wrong before.

There's some interesting talk at tribal this time around. Jenny calls JP out as the leader of the tribe. No biggie there. Then talk comes to Rebecca and Stephanie and not being able to start the fire. Stephanie says she doesn't think it would be fair to use this one piece of a challenge as a reason to boot someone. JP's nodding through this, so Probst calls him on it. He mentions that he got his butt kicked in the swimming portion of the challenge, so he doesn't think that's a good way to decide who goes. With a little discussion about trust or a lack thereof, it's time to vote.

Stephanie shows her vote for JP and JP reciprocates. Christina throws her vote to JP while Nate throws his to Stephanie, "Your wish is my command." How about we have Jeff tally the votes? As Jeff reads the vote, 2 surprises come to pass. First, JP is the fourth person voted off the Cook Islands. Second, Nate was the only person to vote with him. Meaning Parvati, Brad and Adam turned on him. For the first time in a long time, I'm actually surprised by a vote. This is awesome.

For next week, Cao Boi has had enough with the girls' lack of work. To demonstrate his point, we see them discussing their armpit hair. And Raro has some unexpected visitors. With Adam saying he doesn't think they should be there cause it's their turf, I can only assume some of Aitu stops by for some reason or another. I guess we'll find out next Thursday. Until then, take care!



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