Cook Islands: Episode 10

The Raro tribe set Rebecca up to fail in this week’s Survivor Immunity Challenge. And when she did, they voted her out. But Rebecca didn’t leave alone. In a surprise twist, Raro had to vote out a second member, and Jenny was the unlucky victim.

The episode began at Raro, where Jonathan regretted switching from Aitu last episode. Because he was no longer aligned with anyone, he called himself “a wandering Jew without a tribe.”

When the teams fetched their Reward Challenge treemail, they received a board displaying nautical flags and their corresponding letters. Aitu, correctly guessing that they would need to memorize the code, studied the board rigorously.

At the Reward Challenge, two large compass roses had been placed on the beach. Each tribe sent a pair of teammates to dig up a chest near a specified direction on the rose (e.g., North-Northeast). On each chest was written another direction, where a second pair from each tribe would find another chest. And so on.

Once a team had dug up four chests, they opened them to find a total of seven nautical flags inside. The first team to correctly spell the word “victory” with their flags won the reward: a feast with a local tribe.

Because Aitu only had four members (Yul, Sundra, Ozzy, and Becky) and Raro seven, Raro had to sit out three people.

For some reason, Raro chose to sit out Nate, Parvati, and Rebecca for the Reward Challenge. This meant that all three of those members would, by Survivor rules, have to participate in the vastly more important (if a bit less filling) Immunity Challenge.

Though Nate and Parvati had performed well in previous challenges, Rebecca had yet to distinguish herself in a single one. Plus, this challenge involved no swimming, Rebecca’s biggest weakness. So saving her for the Immunity Challenge seemed, well, really stupid.

Pairs were evenly matched during the first round of the challenge, when Jonathan and Jenny dug up their first chest just seconds after Yul and Sundra uncovered theirs.

But then things fell apart. Adam and Candice couldn’t decide which point of the compass represented East-Southeast. Nate and Parvati watched from the sidelines in disbelief. Raro fell behind and never recovered. Aitu solved their puzzle before Raro even unearthed all their chests.

When Jeff Probst asked Aitu which member of Raro they’d be sending to Exile Island, Yul counted, “One, two, three…” and the whole team said, “Candice.” Aitu clearly had neither forgotten nor forgiven her defection from their tribe several days earlier.

On Exile Island, Candice cried and ate sea cucumbers. She sobbed, “It’s not fun to know that people that you like want to see you suffer.”

Aitu flew in a private plane to their feast, which was held on a nearby island. They were greeted in dramatic fashion by a tribal chief, who yelled a friendly greeting in a voice that sounded more like a threat. Tribesmen then carried the stunned members of Aitu on litters and sang to them with some pretty impressive harmonies.

The food looked great, but it was the entertainment that proved the most compelling part of the visit. Some of the hunkier tribesmen danced with Becky and Sundra, and two cute young women kissed Ozzy on the cheek.

Yul, who was trying to keep a low profile, was targeted by two of the biggest women in the tribe. They gave him a sort of island lap dance before picking him up and sandwiching him between them. Everyone laughed, as the usually serious Yul danced with his new friends. But the minute he was let loose from his whirling, fleshy prison, Yul collapsed to the ground and tried to bury his head in the sand.

Meanwhile, at Raro, Jonathan caught fish in an attempt to prove his worth to his new tribe. Though he’d been a schemer on Aitu, he was now stuck in a much more submissive role.

As Jonathan fished, his tribemates discussed voting strategy. Jenny felt Rebecca wasn’t contributing enough in challenges. Adam worried that Jenny was (correctly) suspicious of his relationship with Candice. And everyone considered getting rid of Jonathan — which had been the original plan when he joined their tribe.

Before the Immunity Challenge, the teams received another study guide: a map naming the islands of the Pacific. Because Rebecca was having some trouble memorizing the island names, Parvati trained her with some clever mnemonics.

For the challenge, tribe members swam one at a time to a group of four floating pontoons. After unhooking a bundle from under one of the pontoons, the tribe member swam back to shore.

Once the last bundle reached shore, teams untied them to find ten wooden slats with the names of island groupings written on them. The tribe that first placed the slats next to their corresponding locations on a map won immunity.

Ozzy and Nate started by swimming to the farthest pontoon for their respective tribes. The race was close until the last pontoon, when it came down to Sundra and Rebecca.

Sundra was back to shore before Rebecca could even untie her bundle. Raro had barely unwrapped their bundles before Aitu solved the puzzle.

Jeff Probst had a special item for the losing tribe: a sealed bottle with a note inside. Raro was to bring the bottle with them to Tribal Council. It wouldn’t be opened until after the vote.

At camp, Raro speculated that the note inside contained details on a merge. And they agreed that Rebecca needed to go home.

At Tribal Council, Raro did vote Rebecca out. And then it was time to open the mystery bottle.

Jeff asked Parvati to unseal the bottle and read the note inside. It had nothing to do with a merge. Instead, it instructed the tribe to vote out a second tribe member.

Nate mourned Raro’s loss at the challenge, knowing that a win would’ve reduced Aitu to two members. He grumbled, “Coulda, shoulda, woulda. Spilled milk!”

The tribe voted again, without any further discussion, and the results were two votes for Jonathan, and four votes for Jenny. She was unpleasantly surprised, and in her anger, she flipped her tribe the bird as she walked away.

In her closing comments, Jenny said, “I am completely pissed off. I feel completely burned.” Poor Rebecca got no closing comments at all.

Nate, who’d cast the other vote for Jonathan, looked surprised as well. Suddenly, he was the only non-white member of his tribe.

Next time, Jonathan gets fed up with doing all of the work around Raro’s camp, Yul tells Ozzy about his Immunity Idol, and Adam and Candice suck face.

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