Survivor Philippines–Episode 2 Recap featuring Gillian Larson!


Philippines continues with episode 2 this week, and time to once again have a closer look at the episode and give our ‘expert’ opinions from not only Jarryd in another amazing recap, but also hear from Ben & Lancey as well! Oh, and we’ll even speak to a real expert in our good friend Gillian Larson from the 17th season of Gabon!

(For the Australian viewers who haven’t watched episode 2 yet, clicking the link below will spoil the hell out of the next season, so if you don’t want to be spoiled then don’t click the link!)

Welcome back to my Survivor: Philippines recap! The premiere has come and gone and we’re already into the second episode. So without further ado, I’ll get straight into dissecting the episode.

We kick off with Matsing returning from tribal council. Straight away Russell goes into survival mode, thanking the tribe for keeping him around and admitting how worried he was. This is a fair point from Russell. Out of the three returning players, both Penner and Skupin have gone into tribal councils with the possibility of going home, Russell hasn’t. Before his evacuation in Samoa, he attending only one tribal council and wasn’t in a position to get sent home. We then get a confessional from Russell telling us he’s learnt his lesson and he’s changing his game so he’s head isn’t on the chopping block anymore.

I’ll be honest; Angie is good to look at. It’s also pretty obvious that she hasn’t got an ounce of fat on her body, which causes a potential problem keeping warm during those cold, wet nights in the Philippines.
Malcolm decides to come to her rescue. The pair snuggles close together during the night; there are arms and legs going everywhere. Roxy wakes up during the night to see the pair sleeping together, which doesn’t sit well with her.

The pair claims they were only snuggling to get warm. A logical explanation on Angie’s behalf, however I don’t think she could have provided much body warmth for Malcolm? In a confessional, Malcolm says when he first saw Angie he promised himself not to get “booty blind” – in reality though, that’s a lot easy said than done.

We cross over to Tandang where R.C. is checking the rice for mould. Of course, it doesn’t take long for her to find the clue to the hidden immunity idol. However, Lisa is looking over her shoulder so she has to delay retrieving the clue. Smart move. It all goes downhill from there though. With Lisa walking away, R.C. retrieves the clue from the rice and immediately goes off with Abi-Maria and shares the clue! Dumb move. In a confessional, R.C. explains that sharing the clue with Abi is part of her strategy to create a strong alliance with her. Abi then becomes wary of R.C. and notices her and Skupin having a lot of private conversation, which change topics when she approaches. Panicking she confronts R.C.

An uneventful argument erupts between the pair in which Abi questions R.C. and her relationship with Skupin. R.C. argues Skupin is like a father figure and that Abi and Pete hold similar conversations.
R.C. remains calm, repeating the fact that she isn’t lying to Abi and that she is her friend. However, in a confessional she does question Abi’s position in her alliance.
Maybe it’s Abi’s brazilin blood, but she got worked up pretty easily, reminding R.C. they are playing a game, then threatening R.C. – “I am your friend but if you f*** with me, your dead”

Next we cross to Kalabaw where we are treated to the “Jeff Kent knee injury” sob story. Back in the day, Jeff was an elite baseball player. What Jeff needs to realise is he’s not playing a series defining game in front of fifty thousand fans; he’s playing Survivor on a deserted beach in the Philippines!

The rain continues to tumble down, leaving Penner frustrated. Kalabaw are huddled under the shelter, not allowing him to look for the hidden immunity idol which is hidden around camp. Penner gets a lucky break when the tribe decides to take further shelter from the rain and take refuge in a cave for warmth. Penner tells the tribe he’ll stay at camp (which should be suspicious enough because he’s already been given far too much alone time). The tribe disappears and Penner goes on a frantic search for the immunity idol. His search is interrupted by Dawson and Dana who return to camp to see Penner climbing out from underneath the shelter. It looks like it’s over for Penner at this stage, he’s been caught in the act, but once again, Penner’s brain gets him out of a sticky situation. Penner lies that his contact lens fell out and he was searching for it. Dawson believes his story without question and returns to the cave.

After more frustration, Penner uses logic to find the idol. He figures out that if he had read the clue where he found it, the idol would be ‘right under his nose’. Of course, on top of the rice containing is a very prominent symbol. Penner heads straight to the container, using the machete to take the symbol off the container and the idol is his.

Last week I commented about this emblem being the idol, so I think I deserve some sort of credit for working it out before Penner – although I am sitting on my couch and am well feed and rested, so I’ll let it slide.


Penner finds the hidden immunity idol (Image credit CBS)

Back to Matsing where Roxy is talking to Russell about the relationship beginning to form between Angie and Malcolm. After venting, Russell aggress with Roxy that the alliance between the “couple” is dangerous and that one of them needs to go if they lose the next immunity challenge. They agree it has to be Angie, due to her lack of physical strength compared to Malcolm. Roxy then goes to talk to Denise, campaigning for Angie to be the next to go. Denise reveals very little to Roxy, but later in a confessional says she doesn’t agree with Roxy’s perception. (Is that because she knows the signs to look for being a sex therapist or the fact that she’s in an alliance with Malcolm? We’ll go with both.)

Back at Tandang, it’s still raining and the tribe is forced to retreat under their shelter. Lisa abandons the tribe and heads off to the water well to take shelter by herself. A confessional plays in which Lisa admits she’s an introvert. Okay so Tandang didn’t really give her a chance to prove herself but she has bought a lot of her struggles upon herself. Going off on your own in the middle of a rain storm isn’t going to win you any friends. Lisa you need to come out of your shell and start to interact with the tribe! Whilst the remaining Tandang members think Lisa is off looking for the immunity idol, we see her have a breakdown, confessing she might not be cut out to play the game. She confesses she’s comfortable living on her own and looking after herself because she left home at age twelve. It’s quite an emotional moment, until a hash tag appears in the corner of the screen ruining the mood.

Lisa’s emotional moment is interrupted by an interesting hash tag (Image credit CBS)

Was that really necessary? I thought I could accept the hash tags appearing last week for the immunity challenge and the hidden immunity idol, but do we really need a hash tag to appear when someone breaks down? I’m surprised a hash tag didn’t appear when Angie and Malcolm we’re snuggling, that would have provided some interesting reading on twitter.

Back at Matsing and I’m starting to think Russell has bought the rain from Samoa with him to the Philippines. (Actually, Mark Burnett probably just did some serious editing and we are in Samoa, it’s just been disguised as the Philippines). The rain continues and everyone is complaining. Malcolm then comments on Roxy’s inability to work, telling us Russell is looking after the fire, he and Denise are fixing up the shelter, he doesn’t mention Angie however she is then shown cleaning her teeth with some bamboo. Good to see she’s putting in some hard work to.

Roxy then has a minor breakdown of her own. Russell reassures her that she’s part of the “family” and then the sun appears. This lead’s Roxy to have a moment praying to God for looking after her. While this might have sat well with Coach Wade, Denise questions Roxy’s motives and confides in Russell that Roxy can’t be trusted.

Camp life is done and we’re off to another combined reward and immunity challenge! It’s another fairly simple challenge, two castaways run out with a sled, collects the puzzle pieces and return, another pair runs out, collect the second lot of pieces and then the first pair runs again collecting the third and final lot of puzzle pieces. Two castaways then assemble the puzzle with the aid of a caller on an elevated platform to help them

The first two tribes to finish win immunity and reward. The tribe who finishes first receives a tarp, blankets and pillows, whilst the second place tribe only receives a tarp. Abi sits out for Tandang and is joined on the sidelines by Dawson from Kalabaw.

Once again we get some insight into the strategies of the tribes prior to the challenge. Tandang and Kalabaw are very structured and the decision is easy, whilst at Matsing, there is still some conflict, especially when Roxy admits she has been drinking enough water and doesn’t want to run in the challenge twice.

Tandang (Skupin and Pete) and Kalabaw (Jeff and Carter) take an early lead on the course with Matsing (Russell and Angie) struggling. The second leg see’s Matsing (Malcolm and Roxy) make up a lot of ground on Tandang (R.C. and Artis) and Kalabaw (Penner and Katie). The third leg reverts back to the first pair of castaways for each tribe. Everyone appears exhausted by the challenge. I’m not sure why, it doesn’t look that physically demanding, I guess the sled’s are very heavy.

Kalabaw are first back and Jeff and Penner begin working on their puzzle with Dana’s assistance. Tandang (R.C. and Pete) start their puzzle shortly after with the aid of Lisa. Still collect their third set of puzzle pieces, Angie becomes useless and Russell does most of the work getting the last set of puzzle pieces back for Matsing. Once back, he begins working on the puzzle with Malcolm, with Denise providing the elevated set of eyes.

The puzzle stage provides a close finish. Tandang are the first to finish their puzzle, with Lisa performing well in the role of caller. After starting on the puzzle stage first, Penner and Jeff fail to communicate with Dana early on, but manage to pull it together to finish just ahead of Matsing. Russell is fuming after the challenge, slamming a puzzle piece in frustration, but it doesn’t end there. Once Jeff has dismissed Tandang and Kalabaw back to camp, Russell unleashes on Matsing, telling them they can win however they need to have the belief that they can win. In his outburst, Russell unintentionally blames his tribe members for the lost, not a wise decision considering what happened the last tribal council they attended.


Russell is disgusted at losing another immunity challenge (Image credit CBS)

Matsing get back to camp and the strategizing begins. Russell wants to keep Roxy because she provides him with information aswell as keeping his position in the game safe.


Malcolm talks about snuggling up with Angie – “If a good looking blonde girl is going to throw her arm and leg over me I’m not going to push her away!” (Image credit CBS)

Russell speaks to Denise about her thoughts on the vote. I like what Denise is doing. She’s got an alliance with Malcolm, however, she’s thinking, she’s got herself into a position where she can now decide which alliance she’ll be voting with. Once again, the vote is very much up in the air when it’s time to go to tribal council.

Tribal Council begins with Jeff kicking it off with a question about Russell’s outburst at the end of the challenge. They then discuss what the tribe needs to do better to win. Roxy believes the tribe is working to hard (the girl who does no work wants to do less work?), Denise disagrees, making a valid point that if they don’t work hard, they won’t have food, water and fire, which will make their challenge performances even worse. Jeff then asks Angie how the tribe could improve to which she answers:

“That we could… have cookies!”

WOW! That is probably the worst possible answer she could have given and it shows on everyone’s faces. Malcolm half defends Angie’s answer, then after more talk about giving it your all in challenges, Roxy drops a bombshell on Jeff telling him that Malcolm and Angie are now married. (These weren’t Roxy’s exact words but it’s the best way I can express Roxy’s opinion.)

Malcolm describes his relationship with Angie as a sisterly bond. Roxy rejects this claim and describes Angie’s strategy as a “boobie trap”.
At this point, I can’t help but wonder whether Roxy is jealous Angie is getting all the attention from Malcolm because she sounds extremely jealous and can’t give Jeff an answer as to why it bothers her so much.
At this point the tension between Angie and Roxy is at breaking point.

Jeff really gets into his element, smacking his hands together and spelling out what the state of the situation is to Angie, I think Jeff realises she doesn’t realise the position she is potentially in. Malcolm comes to her defence, telling the tribe Roxy has twisted the story into more than it really is. Roxy has the final say, appealing for the tribe to keep her before the vote.

Much to my surprise, Roxy is voted out in another unanimous vote. Russell did himself a favour and stuck with the tribe, casting his vote for Roxy. A smart move on his behalf, after a poor start he needs to find a position in the tribe and going back to camp as the only person to vote with Roxy wouldn’t have been a smart move.

clip_image002[11]Roxy… the tribe has spoken (Image credit CBS)

Another episode down and another Matsing member leaves, not a great start for the blue tribe.

This week’s sexual innuendo comment from Jeff comes from a question he asked Malcolm at tribal council:

“What if you two are linked?”

This week we are introducing our top three and bottom three castaways from the episode. We’ll be ranking the top three and bottom three players from the episode based on everything and anything that’s important and leave you to fill in the gap in-between.

Top Three

1. Penner

Found the hidden immunity idol, got his act together in the puzzle making stage of the challenge and saved Kalabaw from going to tribal council, can now focus on building alliances within his tribe.

2. Malcolm

In a dominant position at Matsing. Has strong alliances with both Denise and Angie, proved his physically capable by getting Matsing back in the challenge.

3. R.C.


In a dominant position in the Tandang tribe. Probably the most athletic girl this season. Has a strong alliance with Skupin, Pete and Abi and has a clue to the location of the hidden immunity idol.

Bottom Three

15. Angie


She survived the vote and has a strong alliance with Malcolm however if Matsing lose another immunity challenge, she will be the logical choice to send home.

16. Lisa


Performed well as the caller in the challenge however is still on the outs with her tribe. If Tandang lose and immunity challenge, she’s the obvious choice to be first to go.

17. Roxy


She was voted out; she has to be bottom of the list! Causing to much drama when you don’t have an alliance is never going to end well…

Jarryd’s Opinion


I love this season!

Two episodes in and it’s got everything you want in a season of Survivor. The last four seasons haven’t exactly lived up to expectations; however, we have been blessed. From probably Survivor: The Amazon to Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains we got a lot of good seasons. Out of the fifteen seasons spanning from season six, to season twenty, there were only a handful that viewers weren’t fans of. That’s a pretty good strike rate. There was always going to be a run of several seasons that weren’t as enjoyable after fifteen seasons of great television. Then season twenty-five came to the rescue

For me, they have hit it big bringing back Penner, Skupin and Swan. All three are very different and with the exception of Penner, it’s only the second time you’re watching them play. On top of the returnees, the new castaways are a good bunch and most applied to be on the show, which even though they can be selected for dramatic purposes, they know the game.

Episode two took off we’re episode one left off. As a Penner fan, him finding the idol, after lying about losing a contact lens was fantastic! To come up with a story so quickly and so realistic was incredible. Now that he has it in his pocket, I hope he stops alienating himself from the rest of the tribe because for the idol to work to his advantage, he needs to play it in a crucial time in the game, not to survive the first tribal council Kalabaw attend.

I think editing played a big part in this episode. It was made out Angie and Malcolm were spending a lot of time together, in actual fact I think it was blown way out of proportion. I’ve seen hundreds of times in previous season’s of Survivor people sleeping together and nobody thinking anything of it. Roxy made some good points, however I think it was edited in a way so that the viewer didn’t know who was going home when tribal council was underway. I thought Angie had shot herself in the foot with the “cookie question” however it was a unanimous vote against Roxy

My only complaint about the episode was that I’d love if they had separate immunity and reward challenges. However, with three tribes it would be impossible to do because we wouldn’t see any “camp life”

Last week I said Roxy was switched on. I still agree with that because she noticed the Malcolm and Angie situation. However, she handled it completely the wrong way, placing a massive target on her back without an alliance behind her to protect herself. Her inability at the challenge also cost her dearly. Even though Angie was exhausted after it to, however Roxy admitting she wasn’t looking after herself was stupidity.

I like how they are showing a bit more of the challenge strategy from the tribes. They don’t show that too often, usually it’s just a few seconds of tribes huddling up, but they are really getting the cameras in there this season. It provides a greater insight into the tribe dynamic, in a competitive situation, the leaders step out, and you get to see a different side of people

Abi-Maria is an interesting one, she has a lot of potential, but based on tonight’s episode, a very short temper. In Survivor you need to be able to control your opinion otherwise your heads going to be on the chopping block. She needs to keep a cool head, if she lost it with R.C. for talking to Mike, I can’t wait to see how she reacts to something serious

Once again we didn’t see much of Carter, Katie, Artis, Dawson and Pete. It’s going to be interesting to see how they are worked into the story. I think a big part of the edit this season will focus on the tribe going to tribal council in the pre-merge phase of the game, compared to the winning tribes. Otherwise, we’ll see a few “big” characters from each tribe leading up to the merge

Probst has said this season is going to be a great season. So far, it’s living up to its potential and I for one hope it stays that way

Bring on next week and another Skupin injury!

Ben’s Opinion


After such a great start, I think we fell back to earth a little with episode 2. Having said that, it was still a good episode.

Roxy going from a likely position of power to going home was very interesting. At the start of the episode if you had of told me she was going I would’ve been surprised, given to see how she was working out the Malcolm/Angie situation and clueing in with Russ. But this is Survivor and anything can happen. Matsing is in trouble, let’s not beat around the bush. On a season with only 6 people tribes, to be down to 4 already is putting them at a big disadvantage. However, should a switch/absorption come (which is very likely soon) and all 4 of them stick together, it could be a very strong alliance that could make it all the way. Denise is in a good position I think, she is an interesting player and one who should go far.

Was Kalabaw the invisible tribe this episode? I actually think they are the invisible tribe for the entire season so far. Besides Penner walking off by himself and his tribe not wanting him around, there is little substance to them at all. Good for you Penner for seeing the obvious ‘right under your nose’ and getting the immunity idol. Surely people will realise something is missing from the box and call you out on it? Who knows. One thing though that Kalabaw will be happy for is the miraculous recovery of Jeff, who went from hobbling to running freely! I don’t know much about his baseball career, but if the guy can recover that quickly from an injury then hot damn, sign him up to my team!

Tandang is a tribe of mystery, and where the intrigue lies to me. Skupin again looks like he is happy to just stand around and let everything happen and not put himself in any form of conflict. Good for him. But, so different to what I was expecting. Is it the age? The experience? Or strategy? It looks like it will potentially cause him some issues next week if the preview has anything to go by. Lisa, well, as such a fan how can you honestly react that way? This is what I don’t get. You are on SURVIVOR! Can you not realise how hard it is going to be? Sure, you don’t until you are out there, but man, if I was going to go on the show, I would probably lock myself out of the house and sleep on the ground for a week just to prepare myself and not have a sook about it! It looks likely though she is ‘all better’ next week (no surprise there, Holly/Dawn strategy it seems) and is all of a sudden a big power player. I don’t know what to make of Abi-Maria, her accent mixed with her ‘interesting look’ just makes me ponder on her every second I see her on screen, and her ‘blow up’ at RC was just…strange. I think RC is in a brilliant position. She is reminding me a lot of Eliza (without the eyes) and if she can possibly not tick her tribe off the way Eliza did both times she’ll make it far. As for Artis, Pete and Carter, I think they were hanging out with the invisible Kalabaw this episode.

Lot’s of interesting points about this season and definitely one to keep watching. All I take out of episode 2 is ‘cookies’. Say what you will about Angie’s comment, it could turn out to be a brilliant answer (isn’t that right Gillian). If she wins, will you maybe think Cookie is the correct answer to any Jeff Probst question? I think so!

Lancey’s Opinion


Penner is back baby! After tearing the camp apart in a panic and producing a few lies to go along with it, Jonathan Penner has found the idol. Its location and appearance are reminiscent of the idols found in China that lead to James’ downfall, so I only hope that Penner has better luck with them. I’m still not sure whether he has done enough to solidify a place in his tribe alliance because the edit has pretty much left them out completely, so we’ll have to wait to see how it plays out.

Just like we’ve all had a friend like episode one Russell, I think we’ve all known someone who takes a friendship a little too seriously. Hello Abi-Maria. Whilst I can appreciate the paranoia that must be felt on the island and the importance of a strong alliance, I couldn’t help worrying for R.C.’s safety; wondering how long it would take for Abi-Maria to skin her alive and use her as a handbag. R.C. is showing a lot of game, and if a betrayal does occur I only hope that Jeff has a taser on standby.

My old friend Russell seems to have calmed down a little and lucky for him, the target was no longer on his back this episode. While Angie’s cookie comment (perhaps a product of editing?) entertained us all, I particularly enjoyed the wonderful Christian character displayed by Roxy. If she had have just kept her cool she may well have been able to swing Denise and an already confused Russell, and potentially seen Angie go home. I was hoping she’d provide some Matt Elrod kind of breakdown, but alas it was not to be. Oh, and if Angie and Malcolm really see each other as brother and sister, I am very, very concerned. Yuck.

Looking forward to next week where we hopefully get to see a little more of the other players!

Survivor Re-capper: Gillian Larson


Each week we’ll bring you the viewpoint of a former Survivor contestant to hear what they have to think of the episode and their thoughts for the rest of the season!

Our second special guest is our very good friend Gillian Larson from Gabon, as she compares the exit of Roxy to hers on Gabon, the cuddling up factor (and how close Randy cuddled to her), elephant dung and hidden idols as well as why Angie’s now infamous ‘cookie’ answer might’ve been the smartest move so far in the game! Gillian’s ‘Philippines Four’ answers were:

TIP TO WIN: Denise




Join us next week for our recap of episode 3, featuring special Survivor guest Yau-Man Chan from Fiji and Micronesia!

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