'Survivor: Caramoan' – Is That An Idol In Your Pocket?

February 21st, 2013 11:15am EST

Survivor Caramoan Last week on Survivor, 10 past favorites and 10 new fans arrived in the Philippines to play this season’s competition. 4 of the new fans formed a ‘cool kids’ club, angering the others on their tribe, while the usual suspects (Brandon Hantz, and Phillip Sheppard, aka Captain Pink Underpants) stirred the soup on the other.
After losing the Immunity Challenge to the Fans, the Favorites made Survivor history by voting out Francesca Hogi, who became the first person to be voted out first both times she played the game.
Returning home from Tribal Council, Brandon is furious that his fellow Favorites have been so cruel to Francesca. Although Dawn and the others try to calm him down, he’s spitting mad, and vowing vengeance on the others. “I’m being vicious. I’m a motherf---ing honey badger, dude.” Dawn ran off to cry into her knee socks. Those fool enough to stick around for the show, like Erik and Cochran, got to watch Brandon attempt to morph into his dreaded uncle Russell, complete with a little dance and “the wave.”
But like all blowhards, Brandon has blown most of his steam away by the next morning, although Cochran has had enough of the drama. Brandon confesses his previous plans to sabotage their camp, but claims he’s now repented, and is determined to be an asset to the camp, and a good example to his children. Cochran interviews that Brandon veers from extreme rage to unbelievable pleasantness. “He’s like a sociopathic murderer.”
But wait! Phillip’s lurking nearby, in his new pink underwear, and needs to insert his own brand of crazy into the mix. When Brandon asks Phillip if he trusts his tribe, Phillip channels Data from Star Trek, saying he doesn’t have enough information yet to make a decision, and that his judgment of Brandon is on “pause” until Brandon’s proved his value. “And the CEO don’t call in the mid-management unless they’ve got something they want to tell him.”
Phillip interviews that Brandon is “narcistic” (narcissistic) and that “narcistic” people have no empathy for others. At the end of the day, Phillip says there is something very disturbing about Brandon. In fact, he’d have to say the same about Brandon as was said about he himself in the past – he’s crazy. (Pot, meet kettle.)
All little Brandon can do is run to the others, and tell them that Phillip is a big bully, who’s making him feel uncomfortable. (Kettle, meet pot.) He then interviews that “You don’t want to fight with me, Special Agent Pink Panther! Inspector Gadget thought he could pull out his special tricks and that’s gonna be his downfall! ”
At Gota, Shamar is cementing his bad first impression with his tribe by lolling about in the shade, laughing while his tribe mates work. He’s decided that his best chance to keep hydrated is to stay in the shade for the next 40 days, relaxing and sleeping, and picking the occasional fight. The “cool kids” want him gone, but a small faction, led by Sherri, believe that Shamar will be an asset to them, not for his physical prowess, but as their “Phillip.” He’s flattered when Sherri tells him to just keep on annoying everyone, because he’s a-ok in their little group.
Jeff Probst welcomes everyone to the Immunity Challenge, which will also combine a Reward. Mike of the Fans tribe is stunned and impressed to hear that Francesca was once again first voted off. “They came to play. No mercy!”
This challenge will begin with three members of each tribe racing to a raft, which will be pulled out to a platform by three other tribe members. They will find an underwater cage where bamboo sticks are holding down rings. Once the sticks are released, the rings will float to the surface. When all nine rings are released, they’ll be pulled back to shore, where the last three tribe members will use the rings in a game of ring toss. First team to get three rings on their posts will win both immunity and a complete fishing kit. Survivor’s ready?
As the Fans strategize, Shamar says he’ll be a puller, and generally pouts that no one is listening to him. This squabble sets the tone for the competition. The Fans never really pull together, and the Faves easily romp to victory.
Back on the Bikal beach, The Faves are jubilant. But none more so than Captain Underpants, who revives his ‘organization’ from Season 22 – Stealth R Us Inc. He interviews that “for unseen reasons, we have now expanded our operations here, in the Philippines.” Breaking the rule that the Survivors act as if no cameras capture their stay, Phillip then begins to introduce to the camera, documentary style, his commandos. “The newest member of the group (Malcolm) is The Enforcer.” He continues, “It’s so great to be here as The Specialist. The Intelligence Attaché (Cochran,) The Eliminator (Andrea,) The Dominatrix (Corinne,) and True Grit (Dawn) are here to solve a mission that few would dare to take on.”
Everyone laughs, and seems to go along with him, but Malcolm interviews that Phillip seems to think he’s running some sort of spy corporation. He’ll go along for a few days, but if it were to last for the whole game, he’d hang himself. “Phillip Sheppard’s an insane person.”
The Gota beach isn’t nearly as happy. They know that their failure was due to a lack of leadership. Reynolds tries to reprimand Shamar for his “unacceptable” and childish behavior, but Shamar is not taking it lying down. Well, actually he is, because Shamar is always lying down. But this time Shamar is also saying, “So let it be childish,” over and over and over, in response. Allie interviews that she’d never understood why a tribe would throw a challenge until she lived with Shamar for five days – he’s that difficult a campmate. And Reynolds tells Shamar that they’ll be voting him off that night.
Shamar interviews that Reynolds confronted him in front of the group because Reynolds knows that his little foursome are being targeted. By attacking Shamar, Reynolds hopes that the target will be deflected. Frustrated, the tribe mates scatter to collect firewood, water and food, while Shamar lies on the shelter bed, laughing.
Even Matt, originally aligned with Shamar and Sherri, can’t take Shamar’s attitude any longer. He approaches Reynolds and Eddie, pledging allegiance. They just need one more vote, and Shamar will be gone. He hopes that Michael will be the swing vote.
But Michael is also loyal to Sherri, and Sherri doesn’t agree. They’ll be stalemated if a decision can’t be reached. She wants Ally gone. She assures Mike and Matt that Shamar will chill out.
Reynolds, assuming that there’s a Hidden Immunity Idol (HII) somewhere around, goes on an idol hunt. He finds it very quickly, and is ecstatic. But he’s aware that he needs to conceal the idol, and to not reveal to the others his excitement.
No such luck! Laura notices a suspicious bulge in Reynolds’ pocket, just before the tribe leaves for Tribal Council. With no time to alert her alliance, she worries if Reynolds knows about their plan to target Ally, and if so, if he’ll give the HII to her.
Probst welcomes the Fans to Council, and then asks Michael for his first impressions on the game. Mike is quick to point out the current alliances, including the ‘cool kids’ foursome. Ally assures Probst that the four were not trying to exclude anyone, it was just that they had so much in common. Matt says he doesn’t have a problem with the ‘kids.’
Shamar tells Probst that his 300 pound body is not enjoying the little bit of rice and coconut that he’s eaten, and he’s a little drained, and trying to conserve energy. But he’s done two tours of Iraq, so he’s fine with the situation. He just misses the leadership component of the Marines, which is lacking on his tribe. Everyone wants to do things their own way.
Mike feels that the lack of team unity sank their chances at the challenge. Reynolds agrees, but adds that people are frustrated by Shamar’s critiques, which he delivers while lolling about in the shelter 19 out of 24 hours of the day. Shamar readily admits to staying inside, doing nothing, but claims that he’s been an outcast since day one, because he’s big and loud.
The focus moves off Shamar when Jeff asks Laura her opinion. She immediately says that she was under the impression that they were voting as a family, but things changed when she saw a bulge in Reynolds’ pocket. Everyone is shocked when he pulls out the HII, and confesses that he found it earlier. As far as he was concerned they had all already decided, as a family, who was going to be voted out. But he brought along the HII because that’s what you do on Survivor.
Reynolds tries to deflect criticism by saying what a shame it is that the Idol has been outed, as he himself came to play against the Faves. The HII could have been an asset for the Fans, but has now made him a target. Now he’ll have to play it, and they’ll go into the merge defenseless.
Shamar thinks ‘Idol-gate’ is hilarious; one of the four people trying to throw him under the bus has been exposed as a sneak. Shamar says he’s now sure the tribe will vote the right way. Sherri says she’s still voting the way she had already determined – maybe. (Worst. Alliance. Leader. Ever.) They vote.
Reynolds decides not to play his HII. Jeff reads out the votes. It’s tense, a tie, until the last vote, when Ally receives her sixth vote, and becomes the second person to leave Survivor: Caramoan. Ally is clearly furious.
Probst sends them on their way, saying “In order to win this game, you have to get to the end. In order to get to the end, you have to beat the Favorites. And in order to beat the Favorites, you gotta get it together.” Ooh … snap!
Ally’s exit interview: “I had a lot more game to play. It’s so frustrating, because this is what I wanted, and it just – sucks. I’ve wanted to play this game for half my life; I’ve wanted this since I was eleven years old. I’m mortified beyond words that I’m leaving second.”
Next time on, Survivor: The Fans camp is in chaos. Shamar is making camp life unbearable. And for the Favorites, it’s not much better. Brandon says, “I’ll pee in the rice. I’ll pee in the beans. I’ll burn the shelter to the ground.”

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Photo Credits: CBS

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