Survivor contestants pee in their own pool

As the preview last week teased, there was literal urination on Survivor Nicaragua last night. During the middle of a challenge for which the challenge team had constructed a pool just off the beach, Fabio/Jud told his teammate Chase, “I’m gonna pee real quick.”

Chase was incredulous, but Fabio went for it anyway. Jeff Probst caught on and that led to a hilarious exchange that started with Fabio insisting “I’m getting on the pedestal, Jeff,” but then admitting he was “using the restroom.” When Probst challenged him, Fabio said, “The water’s so dirty anyways” and insisted everyone pees in pool water. “Does everyone pee in the pool?” Probst asked everyone; they seemed horrified. “You can’t concentrate when you gotta pee,” Favio said, and when he climbed back up onto the pedestal, Probst announced, “Fabio is fully relieved now.”

Yes, but the damage had been done. Perhaps I’m trying too hard for a metaphor here, but it struck me that this was a good metaphor for the reason Jill was voted off last night. I liked her a lot, and thought she was playing smart and well on her original tribe, so it’d be easy to blame the tribe swap for her eviction. But as it turns out, that wouldn’t be fair, nor was she really playing the best game all season.

That’s because crazy Jane, who just laughed at Marty when he asked her if she voted for him, actually articulated why Jill and Marty are in trouble. “I really felt like the ugly duckling over there,” she told us, referring to her time on the other tribe. While Jill, Marty, and Jill alone wouldn’t have been enough people to counter the five on their new tribe, they could have aligned with one of them and at least even things up. Regardless of the actual numbers, though, Jill ignored Jane and it certainly did nothing to help her, and you always have to play with every possible outcome in mind. Jill was confident enough on her old tribe to ignore Jane, dirtying the waters, and look who’s still around and who has blended in incredibly well with her new tribe. (Although Jane’s tribe will probably be shocked to learn that she was off by herself, starting a fire–what?!–and grilling her own fish because she was tired of doing work for all the lazy kids, meaning she’s not as tight with them as they think she is.)

Meanwhile, Chase pointed out that by keeping Dan, “we made our beds” and that it may be a “hard pill to swallow,” as hard to swallow as two awful cliches, perhaps. I’ll add another: keeping their water full of pee. Dan’s incompetence–he couldn’t even jump to hurl a ball toward a net, which is what the challenge required, didn’t get in Espada’s way, and they won both challenges. The immunity challenge, by the way, appeared to be a creative re-use of the challenge from episode one. Instead of water going down chutes, though, they rolled balls down a chute to try to break tiles. Interesting competition, not as interesting to watch as it must have been to play.

Back to peeing in your own pool, before Tribal Council, Brenda and Sash formulated a plan: Brenda suggested they “be super mean: ask Marty for the idol and vote his ass out.” Sash asked Marty for the idol, promising to give it back if they lost immunity next week. Now, on its surface, that’s about the dumbest plan ever. Why even take it if you’re going to give it right back? The argument was that they’d vote for Marty to flush out the idol, so giving it to Sash would keep it in the game and earn him some points, but either way, Marty wouldn’t have possession of it. Of course, from Marty’s perspective, he potentially gains trust. Then again, he also potentially gains a trip to Ponderosa, and I’m not sure the risk/reward ratio was tipped strongly enough to reward, which Marty seemed to know.

At Tribal, he told Jeff, “I may have made a mistake,” and said, “it could go down as one of the stupidest moves ever, or maybe not.” And giving up an idol pre-merge? That’s a lot of pool pee to contend with, or at very least some residual cloudiness.

Earlier, Sash seemed to indicate that they were going to go ahead with the plan and vote Marty out: “Marty made a big mistake,” he said. But they stuck to their word, albeit with a split vote, and their biggest mistake may have been Sash’s: To use the metaphor one last time, he peed all over himself at Tribal while Probst was grilling him about now having possession of the idol. Sash said he’d consider giving it to one of his allies “if there’s a time when I lost trust in them–sorry,” and then he corrected himself, flipping it around. Probst went for the carcass like a starving vulture, and at least Sash copped to it: “that’s not what I meant to say but that’s what I said.” Brenda looked perturbed, and Fabio started discussing the subconscious when quizzed by Probst about the meaning of the term “Freudian slip.”

In any case, Sash now openly has the idol and shown himself to be somewhat selfish, and going into the merge, I suspect he may soon become a big target–especially when he’s up against people like NaOnka (“I don’t play with animals’ nipples to try to get milk out of them”) and Holly (“I actually started to shake” when I saw food) and Alina (who broke down over the meal her tribe got at the reward challenge), who all seem so fragile that you might as well keep them around.

We’ll see what the merge brings.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.