Survivor: Redemption Island has been running for nearly 3 months now, and so far this season has been extremely straightforward with little to no shocking moments, which is unusual for a Survivor season. With only one episode remaining, which airs this Sunday, that is very unlikely to change and this season may go down as one of the least exciting seasons in recent memory, which is saying a lot considering Survivor: Nicaragua was largely regarded a dull season in itself.
During last night’s episode, the remaining five cast members were began by rejoicing over what they claimed was a huge blindside, when in reality it was the most likely choice and the only person who didn’t see that was the person voted out, Andrea. Regardless, it was time to watch her join the others at Redemption Island to talk about how she couldn’t believe she was betrayed by people she trusted, all the while Matt giving her a look like he was trying really hard to hold in his laughter. For those just catching up on the show late, Matt strongly trusted Andrea, and still did when he returned from Redemption Island only to be voted out again, this time with her vote playing a huge role in that.
It was time to see which one of the four castaways will be joining the jury as they entered the four person challenge which so far has usually been anything but a challenge. That trend continued last night as all four had to simply guide a peg through a maze, break a tile (of course), and finally put a puzzle together. The last one to finish would be sent to the jury and their time in the game official would be over. Ralph got a huge lead and began working on the puzzle first, but the actual placement of the pieces appeared to be too great of a challenge for him to overcome, and he was officially eliminated from the game becoming the fourth member of the jury.
Back in the actual games, it was business as usual for the tribe. Natalie and Ashley were doing some strange things with each other from licking each others fingers to sniffing armpits, while Phillip tried his best to simultaneously earn his way into the final three by being the most hated player and make people hate him so much there is no way they’d ever vote for him. He decided to yell at the girls about the rice consumption, stating they should save the food not for him, but for Grant which may have been a Survivor first. I don’t think I can ever recall a player fighting with another over the amount of food a third party is receiving.
While all that drama was unfolding, Boston Rob took the time to chat with the cameras of course, and let them know what his plan was this week. This time it was a very simple plan, vote out Ashley if she didn’t win immunity, which based on the shows history, foreshadowed Ashley as the favorite to win or nearly win immunity that week. To the (lack of) challenge they went, and players were told they had to run out, hook a bag of puzzle piece fish bones and put it together using just one hand. Not an easy challenge, but certainly not the hardest we’ve seen this late in the game when we are used to players doing extreme endurance challenges for hours to prevent being eliminated.
Like the foreshadowing showed, Ashley came out of the challenge victorious, and was allowed to pick one player from the tribe to enjoy a dinner reward with. Naturally, Natalie was the one selected further cementing their extremely strong bond that has somehow slipped until the second to last episode of the season.
Because this season has essentially been Rob’s game to lose, it was time for him to make the decision on who is going to go, and who will stay.. a mighty impressive feat for a player in the remaining 5 without wearing the immunity necklace. He now had to choose between a person you definitely want in the finals with you (Phillip), your most loyal ally who is also sharing an alliance and close friendship with a strategist (Natalie), or his closest ally who has done little strategically but has dominated challenges likely earning him some votes (Grant).
This move will likely be the difference between earning Rob a shot at a million dollars or yet another second place finish as by voting Grant he risks a very strong possibility of Ashley finally getting in the head of Natalie to team up with whoever returns from Redemption Island to not even allow Rob to the finals. By voting Natalie, he likely loses her vote and the vote of Ashley should she enter the jury, and also has to face a real strong competitor (or two) in the final immunity challenge.
After deliberating on it for some time, Rob told his crew to vote like they intended and a huge fan favorite – Grant – was voted out of the game and sent to Redemption Island where he’ll likely have just one challenge before returning to the game next week, but he’ll have to do it against some very serious competition in a challenge that was likely designed for a 3rd grade field day project.
This likely could be the season Boston Rob finally wins the top prize of Survivor, and by all means he’s certainly earned it up until this point, but the decision to keep Natalie over Grant will likely be the deciding factor on that. We’ll have to tune in Sunday to find out.
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