If you think hidden immunity idols have ruined Survivor, or at least think their time has come and gone, you may be right, but thankfully, they were around to give us the events of last night, specifically the single weirdest thing I’ve ever seen on the show: Amanda and Danielle’s quasi-wrestling slap-fight for a clue to a new hidden immunity idol.
It was particularly weird because it took place in a house–Robert Louis Stevenson’s!–and so the lighting and background was completely different than what we’re used to. Having won reward thanks to Colby, who redeemed his earlier crappy challenge performance (although hand shuffleboard may not be that impressive), his reward challenge teammates Amanda and Danielle joined him on a bed to watch Treasure Island. Amanda, always thinking, searched the room with her eyes for a hidden immunity idol clue, but Danielle found it in their bowl of popcorn. She subtly dropped it to the floor, which led Amanda to say, “What are you hiding under the bed?”
Amanda went over and awkwardly sat and hovered by Danielle’s side of the bed, until she found and grabbed the clue, although just how that happened wasn’t clear. Danielle leapt up and grabbed at it and grabbed Amanda, and they started half-wrestling each other, half-slapping at each other for the clue.
When she described this later, Danielle did an amazing job of revising history to make herself look better, telling her alliance, “I wrestled her to the ground and ripped it out of her hand.” Not quite: Colby, who seemed to be doing his best to ignore the fight like a dad who’s just tired after a long day and would you fucking kids just stop fighting, grumpily sat up and pushed pause on the movie, and declared that the clue belonged to Danielle. Amanda complied, perhaps because she didn’t want to become more of a target as a result of this, or perhaps because Colby’s dad act worked.
Hilariously, Danielle didn’t find the hidden immunity idol; Russell did (of course!). After she shared the clue with him, and because he’s like an immunity idol magnet, found it immediately. He kept it hidden from everyone until playing it at Tribal Council, probably to make himself feel like he was in control again.
Meanwhile, Candice, who’s been a total non-issue all season by flying under the radar as she planed, basically prevented Russell from being voted out. Thanks, Candice! She decided to flip and join the Villains, convinced by Russell, who was worried–correctly–that Sandra would flip and join the Heroes. The Heroes’ original plan was to vote out Russell, who Rupert called “garbage.” (I’m liking Rupert more and more after being annoyed by him during the first half of the season.)
All of the duplicity unraveled really quickly: Candice acted as a mole and told the Villains that Sandra was joining with the Heroes, and Russell, insecure as always, confronted Sandra with that. Once again, Sandra was awesome, acting alternately like this was the most ridiculous thing she’d ever heard and pissed at Russell’s insinuation: “I’m not scared, Russell. Why you trying to threaten me?”
Sandra went back and told the Heroes, including Candice, that she felt burned. Candice insisted all was well, and Colby said, “If this thing doesn’t work, it’s Candice’s fault.” Their plan to vote out Parvati–who they thought was the most likely to be on the periphery–didn’t work, as Sandra stuck with the Villains and voted out Amanda. Russell played his idol anyway, saying afterward, “I’m never that nervous.” Parvati scolded him, “You wasted one.” No worries, I’m sure he’ll manifest three or four more on the drive back to camp.
A message to whoever runs CBS.com: When you take a break from annoying the shit out of everyone by finding more ways to insert Sprint ads into video clips, could you please give Courtney her own web series? I just want to watch Tribal Council from her perspective, because the few quips we heard were awesome. My favorite was when Jeff Probst said he was going to go tally the votes, and
Courtney said, “You do that.”