Our first tribal intro is to the Brawn Tribe who know they're not smart, especially the ex-NBA player who miscounted his team members, but they're strong. How hard can it really be to count to six?
They're followed by the Brains Tribe with Obama's clone, and the first tribe to attempt to get fire, when Debbie begins instructing one of the guys how to do it rather than do it herself. There's a reason for that, she can't do it. Debbie already strikes me as a tad crazy and she's likely to rub her tribe mates the wrong way, but that will make for good TV.
Finally we get the Beauty Tribe and their serious self-delusions, mostly from pretty boy who assures us all that he's not just smarter than everyone but he's prettier than everyone too. Personally I kinda like the old Vietnamese guy, Tai, who has an inner beauty that his tribe mates just don't get. There's also Caleb, who was on Big Brother, and he seems like a pretty straight up guy.
Questions come up as to how certain members ended up on the tribes, and alliances are made as usual with everyone making snap judgements without actually taking the time to get to know their tribe mates. Granted some of these seem pretty obvious but not liking someone because of their packaging is pretty bad. Speaking of bad, what the heck is Darnell doing leaving an offering to the gods right off shore in front of everyone? Seriously? Dude, you're surrounded by bushes . . . use them.
Over at the Beauty Tribe we have a bunch of them chasing their free range chickens and complaining about burning off more calories than they're going to get. On the upside, they're the first ones to actually get a fire going so, should they finally catch some food, they'll be able to cook it. I'm pretty sure they shouldn't be roasting those chickens though.
It doesn't take long before somebody makes a much bigger mistake than Darnell and that somebody is Tai when he goes off in search of an Idol. Nothing like putting a target on your back right at the start. Even worse when you get caught and you can't even come up with a viable cover story so you get right back to it. He went from being everybody's choice for alignment to the most untrustworthy tribe member in just three handfuls of dirt.
Back at the Brains Tribe, Aubrey has begun to realize she's a bit out of her league in the heat and humidity of Kaoh Rong. She thinks she's dehydrated but that's not it all, she's roasted. You can't leave Boston in the winter and head over to Cambodia without some serious heat. It's not helping her much staying out in the sun while the rest of the tribe is hunkered down in the shade, but at least Debbie convinces her to join them.
Night falls, everybody cools down, and in the darkness of the Brawn Tribe Jennifer finds herself with an unwanted guest. Somehow, some tiny little insect has decided her left ear would make a nice cozy little nest. Odd that she wouldn't have felt the little bigger going in but now that it's there she's not happy about it. Talk about a serious ear worm.
By morning the pain in Jennifer's head was becoming unbearable and there wasn't anything any of her tribe mates could do to help. Eventually the little bigger finally made his way back out of her head and she couldn't believe that it was only about a quarter inch long. All that pain from something so tiny, but at least now it was gone and so was the pain. She was quickly back to her old self, and just in time for the Immunity Challenge.
In the first Immunity Challenge tribe members have to jump off of a dock and swim over to a boat where everyone needs to get inside; once they're all inside one tribe member must dive down and release four paddles from beneath the water; once they have all four paddles they can row to shore and then haul they're boat up on to a rack and convert their boat into a cart by adding four wooden wheels; then they need to push, pull or drag their cart to the top where they get to make a choice between Puzzle or Dexterity, either assemble a puzzle or balance balls while standing on a wobbly beam. The first two tribes to finish win Immunity and either a massive fire making kit or a flint, while the losers get to be the first tribe to visit Jeff at Tribal Council. Oh joy.
The tribes take a few minutes to strategize who's doing what and then they're off to the docks. All tribes are pretty quick into the water with Beauty the first into their boat with Brains right behind. Darnell at the Brawn boat is having the damnedest time getting out of the water, almost tipping the boat in the process. By the time he's in the other two tribes have dived down to get their paddles and then, when Darnell dives in, he loses his diving mask. He is not endearing himself to his tribe at all.
While Darnell continues to flounder, Beauty has retrieved all their paddles and made their way to shore even before Brains get their last paddle. That's a tremendous lead but now they've got to get their boat out of the water. That's one heavy boat and while the Beauty Tribe struggles to get it out and onto their cart the Brains have rowed ashore. (There's a pretty picture.)
Brawn finally gets their last paddle and with all that muscle they make short work of rowing to shore and get their boat out of the water right behind Beauty and Brains. So much for that great lead that the Beauty tribe had as Brains are the first to get their wheels on. While Brains start moving their cart, Brawn finishes converting their boat and passes Beauty who got stuck on the wheels.
Brains are the first to the top and decide to go for the puzzle. Brawn makes the same decision when they get their cart to the top as Beauty continues to struggle as they drop from first to last. To their credit they don't give up and also choose to do the puzzle. This can be the make it or break it decision for each tribe because if your puzzle builder can't do puzzles you're sunk.
The Brains maintained their lead and completed the puzzle, being the first to win Immunity and the massive fire making kit. It's down to number two and Beauty and Brawn are neck and neck, but in the end Beauty regains their lead and beats out Brawn for the second Immunity. Brawn gets the honour of being the first tribe to go to Tribal Council and the first tribe to send somebody packing.
It's no surprise that Darnell is being thrown under the bus but at least he owns up to the fact that a lot of this was his fault. He almost tipped the boat, he lost the mask and then he couldn't assemble the puzzle. Badass Barbie wasn't much help either and she knows it, but at least she wasn't obviously at fault . . . just blonde.
Time for Tribal Council and I love how Jeff quietly directs the questions to draw everyone out. After 31 seasons he's become a master at this and I've always believed that the best thing you can do at council is shut the heck up. The more you talk the more you draw attention to yourself and that's never good at Tribal Council.
Interestingly enough, the two people at the bottom are the two loudest at council, but at least Darnell intends to go out fighting even though he's sure it could be him. Time to vote and then Jeff tallies the votes and I'm not surprised to find three votes for Darnell and three votes for Alicia. So, back they go to vote again.
In the end it's Darnell's lack of performance at the immunity challenge, first losing the diving mask and then messing up the puzzle, that earns him the honour of being the first tribe member to be voted out of Survivor Kaoh Rong. On the upside, he took it well and went out fighting harder than he did in the challenge.
Well, that's it for the first episode of season 32 and hopefully by the next episode I'll remember who's who. If not I'm sure one of my readers will point out my error. See you all next week for another Survivor review and be sure to watch for my next Amazing Race review following Friday's episode.