As Day 7 dawns at the Masaya tribe they get a howler monkey wake up call. More to the point Shirin going on about watching the howler monkeys mate and there's no cuddling afterwards. I think she's starting to freak the rest of them out. Monkey sex talk is not what you want to wake up to.
Over at the Blue Collar camp there's no sex talk, just grumblings over the lack of food and sleep. Morning banter between Rodney and Dan leads to a joking comment about Rodney's mother and now he's got his tats in a knot. As Dan has pointed out his biggest problem is his mouth. I'd agree with that. Now he's got Rodney all out of shape and I think he's figured that out.
Back at Nagarote, Jenn and Hali decide to go surfing on some makeshift boards. Great idea to get a little down time as the tribe's paranoia level shifts down a few notches. Joe uses the time to get a bit closer to Nina and help her feel like less of an outsider and we find out that his mother was an interpreter for the deaf so he can relate to Nina a lot better than Jenn can. It may prove useful that the two of them both know sign language.
Day 8 and a few of the Masaya tribe members are searching for the HII. Good luck with that guys. As the rest of the tribe is out searching Carolyn stays behind to watch the fire, safe in the knowledge of exactly where that idol is. It looks like the paranoia has shifted from the No Collars to the White Collars, and I think Shirin would have been more comfortable with the No Collars.
Tyler is the only one who knows who has the HII but he has to continue looking for it with Joaquin to keep him in the dark. With Joaquin on the outside due to his lies and Shirin standing on the other side because she's just a little crazy, Tyler gets to walk the plank between them. For now.
Mike feels like he's the only one doing any work over at the Escameca camp and the editing seems to support his point of view. For a Blue Collar group they're certainly resting on their butts a lot. When he asks Rodney to help gather wood, Rodney says he'll work when he feels like it but right now he needs food. Come on, dude, you all need food. Lindsey thinks Mike is overstepping his position and feels that she has the best work ethic in the group. I'm pretty sure the rest would disagree.
Rodney decides to call Mike out and everyone else goes quiet. His impersonation of Mike when he wanders off with Dan was pretty funny. Meanwhile Mike is back at camp defending his position to the girls. The trick in Survivor is play a good social game without painting a target on your back, but right now both Mike and Rodney are starting to set the rest of them on edge. It doesn't help that Mike and Dan are the two oldest in the group surrounded by the "what's in it for me" younger generation. A generation that outnumbers them on the tribe.
Somehow Mike has managed to push all of Lindsey's buttons at once. I don't fault her defending her point but things are starting to get a little heated at Escameca. Might be time to cool things down.
And on that note it's time for a great big bucket of cool down at the Immunity Challenge. The White and Blue Collar tribes are both really surprised to find that Vince was voted out of the No Collar tribe at the last Tribal Council. I guess they saw him as the leader of the tribe, maybe now they'll realize how quickly things change in the game.
For today's challenge each tribe carries a large bucket filled with holes to a water tower, fills the bucket, and then races back while trying to block those holes and lose as little water as possible so they can fill their barrel which sits on a lever that will raise their flag. The first two teams to do so win Immunity and reward. The first tribe gets the deluxe comfort reward of chairs, blankets, pillows, candles, rope and a tarp. The second tribe gets the economy reward, a tarp. The third tribe gets a free trip to Tribal Council. Lindsey sits out for Blue Collar to even up the tribes.
White Collar takes the lead heading to the tower but not much of one. Joe sends Nina back early for the No Collars so they can maneuver with just four people through the obstacle. Blue Collar gets back first with White a Collar on their heels and both tribes head back as No Collar arrives but dumps half their water outside the barrel. That ain't good.
Blue Collar starts heading back with their second bucket and Nina heads back on her own again. Neither Jeff, nor I, have any idea what the strategy is behind not having Nina block some of those holes. It's not like she's of any use at the barrel and Jeff can't figure out why the No Collar tribe is not having Nina participate. All this ill do is make her feel more like an outsider again. Blue Collar dumps their water into the barrel and heads back as White Collar arrives and eventually the slow moving No Collars again miss their barrel. Almost like they're throwing the challenge but I'm pretty sure that's not the case.
Blue Collar maintains a small lead on White Collar as Will begins to tire out at the water tower. Maybe he should be the one pulling the rope to release the water and Nina can block some holes. White Collar overtakes the Blue a Collars on the course but they don't have enough water to raise their flag and head back. Blue Collar also didn't have enough and also head back. Weren't there three tribes?
As the White Collar and Blue Collar head back for their last bucket they pass the slow moving No Collar tribe who finally have Nina helping out to block those holes. Probably too little too late. Blue Collar heads back to with their water just before WhiteCollar and both teams are a full bucket ahead of the No Collar tribe. Blue Collar wins the first Immunity and reward, with the White Collars winning the second Immunity and a tarp. Nagarote gets a free trip.
Joe looks a bit depressed with their performance and when he explains the strategy to Jeff it's fairly obvious that this was his screw up. Nina looks like she just had the weight of the whole bucket on her shoulders because she knows she's still a target and this move didn't help. Will seems to think it's Nina's time to go, but he fails to realize that his lack of ability has been a big problem in the last two challenges.
As the Nagarote tribe return from their death march to camp Joe apologizes for his strategy and takes full responsibility. He knows he misjudged both the situation and Nina and he's sorry for that. Way to "man up" buddy. Hopefully the tribe doesn't hold the situation against him or Nina, but who does that leave? Will? Nina knows that the vote is going to come down to either her or Will and it looks like the tribe agrees with that. Everyone feels Will is weak but has the drive, whereas Nina is a wet blanket at camp. Time for council.
Jeff opens with a discussion of their last trip to Tribal Council and how Vince wasn't the only one surprised at the outcome. When he asks for Will's assessment, Will says he sided with someone he trusted more than he trusted Vince. A fair decision. Jeff then discusses the blend from a tribal game to an individual game before asking Joe his reason behind the strategy that lost them today's challenge. Joe felt that getting four people through the obstacle was easier than five and didn't want Nina to stumble and take the bucket with her, but he realizes he made the wrong decision and that's going to cost someone.
Nina once again brings up her "disadvantage" and everyone rolls their eyes. I think they're tired of hearing about it and she may be slitting her own throat here. As Jeff points out, perception becomes reality. When Will says it always goes back to Nina being deaf, Nina says the tribe would be crazy to keep Will over her. Jeff questions whether maybe Nina was put into the wrong tribe and Hali agrees with that and points out that for Nina to be a No Collar player she needs to have the No Collar mindset and not the White Collar mindset she had for 42 years.
It's going to be a tough vote and Nina feels she can step up to that No Collar aesthetic while Will is looking sadder and sadder in the background as he's starting to notice the winds of change. Time to vote and nobody looks happy to be doing so for a change. Jeff goes to tally the votes and asks for the HII, but nobody plays it. First vote . . . Nina, Will, Will, Nina and finally . . . Nina. Not sure it was their best decision but only time will tell as four sad Nagarote members head back to camp.
Next week we get a special two hour episode and someone else takes a shot at Rodney's mom. Blindfolds, bloodshed and medical. I can hardly wait. See you next week for a longer review, or this weekend for my Amazing Race recap. Until that time.