Survivor Philippines continues with episode 9 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 Joel Anderson from the 16th season of Micronesia!(For the Australian viewers who haven’t watched episode 9 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! Join me as I breakdown episode nine, including Jonathan Penner’s real name, Abi’s attempted murder of Skupin and the power switch!
Dangrayne return from Tribal Council following Jeff being voted out. Everyone is in agreeance that Tribal was completely crazy. Penner states it was the craziest Tribal Council he’s attended, before questioning whether he was the one who screwed up the vote by throwing a vote at Abi. Speaking of Abi, she reminds me of Lex (Survivor: Africa & All-Stars) as she runs around camp questioning everyone as to who voted for her. Penner owns up explaining that he was annoyed because he didn’t know about the Idol. Abi is actually surprisingly calm and doesn’t continue the argument. Lisa seeks out Malcolm to apologise for throwing him under the bus at Tribal. Malcolm isn’t too concerned; assuring Lisa they were both playing the game. Lisa is visible upset, and continues to apologise to Malcolm before she question whether she can continue playing the game with all the lies and deceit that have come into play. Finally, Skupin breathes a sigh of relief and admits he wasn’t worried that Jeff went home ahead of Pete because they were both targeting returning players.
The next morning, Penner lays all the cards on the table in a confessional. He states that it’s now the “Tandang five” against the “Kalabaw three” plus Malcolm. Penner states that there are two distinct groups in the Tandang alliance – Lisa and Skupin, who are trying to play the nice, Christian game and Abi, Artis and Pete, who are playing the bullying game.
Therefore, Penner makes it his goal to win over Lisa and Skupin by appealing to their hearts. He approaches Lisa, who is still struggling from her actions at Tribal Council. Penner, using all his psychologist knowledge, has a deep conversation with Lisa about how what she went through at a young age, being away from home and in the spotlight, and why she strives to be “perfect”. Penner reduces Lisa to tears, however she feels a strong connection to Penner, believing they understand each other and telling him that he has helped her “understand herself.”
Lisa thanks Penner for helping her “understand herself” (Image credit CBS)
Fortunately for Lisa, the “Survivor Breakdown” hash tag doesn’t pop up in the corner of the screen this time – does this mean CBS have scrapped the idea of using hash tags when castaways breakdown? or was it not a big enough breakdown to warrant a hash tag?
Wait a moment, I spoke to soon… we do have a hash tag! It’s not about breakdowns though; it’s about the upcoming Reward Challenge!
For the challenge, the nine remaining castaways will divide into two teams. (This is done off-screen, it isn’t stated how they teams were chosen, however Probst does comment saying that the teams were picked by the castaways). One team comprises of Skupin, Lisa, Pete and Artis and the other Penner, Carter, Denise and Malcolm. (For convenience sake, I’ll be referring to them in this challenge as “Team Skupin” and “Team Penner”). Abi isn’t chosen and is forced to sit out, and is thus ineligible for reward. (I personally would have loved to have seen Abi having to “back” which team would win, and if she guessed correctly, to attend the Reward. If this occurred and Abi was smart, she would have chosen ‘Team Penner’ in order to have ears in a potential “alliance discussion” situation.
Enough of my ramblings. For the challenge, one team member at a time has to run out, crawl under a log through a mud pit, navigate an A-frame then search for a bag of balls in a muddy pit. After finding a bag of balls, the castaway’s must crawl with the bag of balls under a rice crawl (a square box that contains rice instead of mud). After all four castaways have run the course; they must untie the bags, releasing twelve balls. They then must shoot the balls into a basket. The first team to have all twelve balls in their basket wins an afternoon feast at a local village, where the castaways will also get to supply the children with school supplies and toys.
Before I continue, I just want to say how fantastic it is to see Survivor bringing back this Reward. It use to be a staple every season, however in the last five years it has gone missing. It’s good to see it back; it’s always rewarding to see the castaways giving back to local communities in the location they are in.
The challenge begins with Penner and Skupin the first on the course for their respective teams. It’s dead even during the obstacle stage of the challenge, however Skupin finds his bag first and gets his tribe off to an early lead. Whilst many Penner fans will be exploding at this point, it’s not all bad for the “big fat guy”. If you remember back to a Reward Challenge in Survivor: Micronesia, the challenge involved releasing coconuts from an underwater cage. Penner was stationed on the puzzle section of that challenge, so he saw first hand how Ozzy moved multiple coconuts to the end of the cage to gain an advantage over the Fans tribe. Penner uses all his Survivor experience in this challenge and does exactly the same thing. Instead of digging up his bag of balls, he quickly digs up all four bags, leaving three in the far corner so his team can collect them quickly.
Penner’s strategy pays off. Carter makes up the lost time easily against Lisa, (who again struggles), giving ‘Team Penner’ the lead. Denise and Malcolm then add to their lead as Pete and Artis struggle to find the hidden bags in the mud.
Going into the next stage of the challenge, ‘Team Penner’ have a two bag lead over ‘Team Skupin’. ‘Team Penner’ makes quick work shooting the balls into the basket; however, they hit a snag on the final ball, struggling to get it in. This opens up the door for ‘Team Skupin’ who piles on six quick baskets. In the end, not even Michael Jordan could have scored that quickly to save ‘Team Skupin’ from losing the challenge as Malcolm puts in the final ball for ‘Team Penner’, thus winning reward for his team by six balls.
A disappointed ‘Team Skupin’ along with Abi are sent back to camp, whilst ‘Team Penner’ head out for their reward.
We join up with the victorious ‘Team Penner’ as they arrive in the local village. We’re treated with various clips of the castaways interacting with the village people, but the best is of course, Penner. He introduces himself to the local children. After telling them his name (they chant it back to him), he goes onto say that his name is normal where he comes from. Evidently, the children are that excited they weren’t fully aware what Penner said, so they inadvertently chant “normal” believing that to be his name. It’s a classic moment, one of the reasons I love the visit to local communities as rewards.
After playing a local game (similar to a piñata), the castaways continue to play around with the children whilst the feast to prepared. Malcolm reminisces about his time spent teaching in Micronesia, whilst Carter plays basketball and Denise speaks with the women. As they eat, all four express their desire that Skupin was with them on the reward. Penner uses this time to bring up strategy. The trio agrees with Penner than Skupin and Lisa won’t remain loyal to Tandang if they are continuously treated like lower class individuals. They agree to stick together and recruit Lisa and Skupin in order to vote out the “bullies” (Abi, Artis and Pete.)
‘Team Penner’ celebrates their victory whilst discussing strategy. (Image credit CBS)
We cross back to camp where ‘Team Skupin’ and Abi are resenting their loss. Pete comments on losing another challenge, although see’s a bright side in that he will be able to spend some alone time with Lisa and Skupin in order to consolidate the “Tandang five.”
Whilst sitting around camp, Abi makes it clear that Penner will be next to go. Of course we are talking about Abi… and she continues on, further consolidating her title of “loose cannon.”
Abi begins to attack Lisa for the information she leaked at the previous Tribal Council. She calls Lisa “gullibly and naïve,” attacking Lisa, before realising she needs her vote, and pleading with her to stay loyal to Tandang.
Artis can’t believe what he’s hearing, he joins the “talk about how bad Abi is at the game” club as a confessional plays where he speaks about Abi having no idea about the game, or who taught her how to play, before wishing that she’d “shut up before she screws everything up.”
Just before the break, Lisa gets another confessional. She says that it’s time to reevaluate the “Tandang five”. However, once again she is having problems betraying people. She claims that it looks bad on the ‘outside’ to flip against Tandang, whilst on the ‘inside’ it makes sense to flip.
We get back from break and it’s time for the Immunity Challenge. Penner refuses to help Jeff take the Immunity Necklace from him, increasing the tension going into the challenge. For the challenge, each castaway has to balance an oversize paddle. They then have to roll a ball down the paddle and attempt to land the ball on a notch in the paddle. The first castaway to have a ball on each notch (six in all), wins Immunity. All in all, a very difficult challenge, as not only do the castaways have to balance the ball on the paddle, they also have to be careful not to knock another ball, that’s already found a notch, off the paddle.
For me, the challenge was a complete flop and it left me wondering whether the “Survivor Dream Team” (for those of you who aren’t aware of this team, they test the challenges to make sure they work), are on the same performance enhancement drugs that Lance Armstrong used. They must have been using something because the challenge somehow got the all clear to take place.
Dangrayne prepare for the day twenty-five Immunity Challenge. (Image credit CBS)
It came down to a two horse race, Pete and Skupin – nobody else managed to secure a ball in a notch. Skupin had a slight lead over Pete, forcing Pete to increase the intensity of the challenge. Skupin had a slight lead over Pete as the pair try to work their fifth ball into a notch. Pete panics, thus sending not only his fifth ball to the ground but also two others, leaving Skupin with a huge lead. So Skupin, (the man who was forced out of the game because of burnt hands), now lives to see another day because of those steady hands.
Eleven years in the making – Skupin wins his first Individual Immunity. (Image credit CBS)
Heading out of the challenge, Artis gives a confessional about how if everything goes as planned at Tribal Council, Penner will get sent home, then his alliance can finally relax.
The usual pre-tribal madness begins once Dangrayne are back at camp. Penner is worried about the numbers, whilst Skupin admits that was “his challenge” since he can no longer keep up physically. I will admit I’m happy Skupin got to win an Individual Immunity, we never got to see him go up against Colby in the Australian Outback, and so even if he had to wait eleven years, he won one. Whilst Skupin basks in the glory of his victory, Abi complains in a confessional that even though Penner is going home, Skupin is much more annoying. Following this, we see Skupin lying down at camp with Malcolm, whilst Abi attempts to open a coconut off to the side. Comically, the coconut flies off the machete, bouncing into Skupin’s head. The odds of that happening would have to be next to none; however… it is the injury prone Mike Skupin, so that was probably a betting option on some bookmakers markets.
Denise saves us from pitying Skupin for too long by coming up with a plan to make sure the Idol isn’t played by Abi. Believing that Abi is selfish, Denise believes Abi would only play the Idol for herself or for Pete, therefore, they should target Artis. There conversation is interrupted by Abi screaming about finding a clam – unfortunately for her, nobody sees to care.
Denise then lays out the plan in a confessional, if Lisa and or Skupin join them, Artis will be going home, if they don’t, Penner will be. In order to save himself, Penner continues to work on Lisa, telling her how the audience will perceive her and whether that’s the perception she wants to leave Survivor with. Penner leaves Lisa to contemplate the vote, then goes off to convince Skupin. This is a much easier job, and after promising him final five, Skupin seems keen.
Confused and unsure what to do, Lisa and Skupin come together to discuss their options. They plan to vote together no matter what, in order to continue playing the game with the alliance they created on day one. Skupin gives Lisa two options, go with an alliance to get further in the game (Tandang), or go with the alliance that they want to play the game with (Kalabaw). The decision is left up in the air as we head off to Tribal Council.
Tribal Council is another interesting affair. Lisa speaks about how the minority treated her with more grace following the previous Tribal Council. This annoys Abi, the look on her face could have killed a small animal, however, when asked by Jeff, she doesn’t pounce on Lisa. (It looks like Pete has had another word to her about speaking out). Artis then states that Tandang are five strong and the game is playing out like it should, however, he knows that he isn’t one hundred percent safe and blindsides do occur.
Probst then explains to Skupin that he has a vote at Tribal (really?) and with the Immunity Necklace on, his vote could change the course of the game. Lisa pipes in saying that she believes the game is bigger than her, however she has learnt from her time on the Island. Probst then asks Denise whether there will be a power shift, Denise hopes their will be. Abi, (bless her, she must have been fighting the urge to speak for so long), confesses that Tandang has thought about losing power in the game. She then goes onto say that she is worried Lisa will flip… not again Abi! R.C. can’t believe her former foes stupidity, whilst Lisa does her best to deflect the attention. With that, it’s time to vote.
The votes are split early between Penner and Artis. When Penner gets a fourth vote against his name, I’m positive it’s over, that Lisa and Skupin have stuck together and that Penner’s game is over. I’m dead wrong; Artis gets another three votes against his name and is voted out five votes to four.
Artis… the tribe has spoken. (Image credit CBS)
I give Artis a heap of credit in his exit speech. He’s not bitter at all, and instead credits Penner for his ability to come back from the dead.
When the votes are being shown as they are cast, its revealed Skupin voted for Artis and Lisa voted for Penner. An interesting little twist. Did Lisa tell Skupin to vote for Artis so she didn’t have to be disloyal? Did Lisa not want to vote with Kalabaw? We’ll find out next week I’m sure.
This week’s sexual innuendo comment from Jeff comes from during the Reward Challenge.
“Penner’s already grabbed the balls!”
This weeks top and bottom three are:
The man looks to have done it. He’s come back from the dead. His old alliance has come back to him following a short hiatus. He continues to prove his worth in challenges, with past experience paying off big time in the Reward Challenge.
If the new power alliance sticks together for the remainder of the game, it’s going to be very difficult to beat Malcolm in a physical challenge. Add in his strong bond with Denise and the fact he has the Hidden Immunity Idol, he’s going to be very dangerous as we head towards the end game.
It looks like Skupin is finally out of his abusive relationship with Tandang. He’s joined up with Penner and Co. and it looks like he’s going to the final five. He also won this weeks Immunity Challenge, giving him his first Individual Immunity victory.
Her rein of terror looks to be coming to an end. She holds onto seventh spot because she has the added protection of the Hidden Immunity Idol and isn’t as much of a threat as Pete.
Pete was living the good life last week, now things have changed dramatically. A power shift in the game see’s him going from the top of the totem pole to the bottom. He looks likely to be next to go. The only thing that can save him is his ability to win challenges.
Artis was never going to win this game… why? Because his edit didn’t allow him to. Overall, Artis played a solid game however he aligned himself with the wrong people. He seems like a really nice guy who got caught up with the bullies. He did provide some comedic value, however let himself down in aligning with Abi.
What the castaway’s and our followers said about the episode.
Remember, if you’d like to see your tweet feature in this section, tweet us during next week’s episode (@survivoroz) or use the hash tag #survivoroz and your tweet might get selected!
This season continues to amaze me.
I actually for the first time in a very long time find myself counting down the days till a new episode of Survivor is on. Not saying I wasn’t excited before, but I think it’s probably the first time since Heroes vs Villains that each week I’m on the edge of my seat for the entire episode. It’s fantastic. And each episode always brings a surprise and a new frontrunner. This week was no exception.
Had to laugh at Penner going to Carter for a low down on what happened at tribal council the night before. Really Penner? CARTER?! And it turned out it was Penner doing most of the talking anyway with a couple of ‘bro’ and ‘dudes’ thrown in from our loveable Fabio 2.0. Abi-Maria continued her craziness right at the start of the episode with her best Lex/Rupert impersonation of ‘WHO THE HELL VOTED FOR ME’. Glad to see a woman can be involved in these moments, will look great in a highlights reel in the future.
The reward challenge was a trip down memory lane in terms of the reward itself, with the giving back to the community aspect reminding me of Africa and the challenge Lex & Ethan went on with the Soccer Balls. It turned out pretty pivotal in who won as well, as Carter, Denise, Malcolm and Penner all managed to form something strong enough in the hope of getting Skupin and/or Lisa on board for the next vote. It really was the first time I can remember that a reward challenge group who have had the chat about ‘sticking together’ have managed to pull it off. A power shift is always a good thing, especially when it comes from the underdogs. The immunity challenge too was incredible for one reason: Skupin. He finally won an immunity and I haven’t been that happy to see somebody with an immunity idol around their neck since Russell won the final challenge in Samoa. I think Skupin is actually probably in the best position in the entire game right now. I think he has options either side and really is the key man for the direction the game goes. Penner too is in a handy position, but I just have an inkling Skupin could be on target for a boost in his bank balance if he continues, and it’s been a very clever strategy with just the small element of luck along the way.
Lisa also stood out in this episode, but going from a strong powerful player a week ago right back into the “poor me with the conflict and lying issues” player lost her some respect from me. She is ideally in probably about third or fourth spot right now, and if the rest of the gang are smart they won’t let her go to the final Tribal due to her being so damn popular amongst most people. Although judging by the reaction and body language of Jeff & RC on the jury, she might not be as liked as you would think.
Artis going home, well, honestly doesn’t really do much for the game. No offence to Artis as it wasn’t his fault, but he really hasn’t been anywhere this season. In a season where most of the contestants have had a fair amount of airtime, he has gotten jack all. It’s sad really, as he was one I thought could go right to the end if he played his cards right, but it just didn’t work out for him. Obviously another shocking tribal council saw things change once again, and I’m already counting down till next week! All signs are also pointing to a final 2, so this could get even better!
This week was fairly average up until Tribal Council.
Penner is a genius at the way he was trying to get Lisa to side with him. His little story about how the audience will view her is one hundred percent correct. Lisa is so determined to stay loyal that whoever gets voted out will make her feel bad.
The challenges were pretty boring in my opinion. The Reward Challenge felt like something we’ve already seen this season, whilst the Immunity Challenge was a flop, only Pete and Skupin could land a ball, whilst every time someone else was shown on camera, I felt like they were struggling (especially Penner), to hold back abusing how pathetic the challenge was.
I’m extremely disappointed that once again we didn’t get a water challenge. We’ve been deprived of them for so long, and now, that we have a location that water challenges can be done, they haven’t appeared since well before the merge. Fingers crossed we get one next week.
In saying that, I did like the Reward. Going into a local village and donating supplies hasn’t happened in a long time on Survivor and I’ve missed it. It’s a nice touch and I’m glad they have bought it back, because lately we haven’t seen it, which is a real shame because it truly is a once in a lifetime experience.
Skupin is fast becoming the “loveable older contestant” this season. He doesn’t do overly well in challenges, he’s not very strategic and he’s still constantly getting injured. When the coconut Abi was “chopping up” flew off the machete and smacked Skupin in the face, it was hilarious – especially when a moment before Abi was complaining about how annoying Skupin is. I don’t know about everyone else, but someone who complains a lot, does little around camp, is useless in challenges and then takes pot shots at people’s heads with coconuts is pretty annoying.
Tribal Council was never going to back up from last week, however it was still interesting. Abi opening her mouth and openly worrying about Lisa’s loyalty should have been enough for Lisa to turn against her. The problem with Lisa is that she’s too nice; she doesn’t want to annoy anyone. Unfortunately for her, you can’t play Survivor like that these days. If Tandang had stuck together and made it to the final five, Lisa would have been out of there first, because she would have gotten a lot of Jury votes. If she wants to win the game, she has to wake up and realise she’s playing a game, otherwise, she’ll end up sitting on the Jury.
In my book, the “Kalabaw alliance” had a minor victory in this episode. All they achieved is what should have happened during the first Tribal Council following the merge. In saying that, we have seen a power switch, which will continue to keep the season interesting.
I feel Artis could have gone a lot further in the game if he aligned with the right people. If my memory serves me correctly, he’d applied for the show nine times. If he didn’t align himself with “the bullies” I believe we would have seen a very different perspective and edit on his behalf. I’m not complaining though, it was obvious he wasn’t going to win because he suffered from very little screen time.
I will say I love Artis for not being bitter. Countless times, seasons of Survivor have seen a castaway robbed of winning the game because of a bitter Jury. Whilst the most deserving person to win might not be the most likable person, I cannot stand it when members of the Jury cast their vote based on who screwed them in the game.
I’m looking forward to next week. My man, (Penner), looks like he’s back into a reasonable position in the game. I’m hoping he can stick with Skupin, Denise, Malcolm and Carter and ride it out all the way to the end!
‘L’, is for the way you look… oh sorry, I was just singing a song I wrote to Penner about how much I LOVE him this season. Although his somewhat manipulative technique of trying to turn Lisa around was questionable, he is playing an amazing game.
Finally, FINALLY, the Abi/Pete alliance has been broken. I was a little disappointed to see Artis go, but at least it may mean the demise of the most paranoid, nasty and arrogant alliance we’ve seen in awhile.
The rumours of Malcolm being a the villain of the season no longer seem possible, though I guess it’s difficult to look like a villain anyway next to someone who hurls coconuts around camp. Denise, Skupin, Penner, Malcolm and Cater could be an interesting final five, though with Abi’s idol still in play Lisa may be the next target. Her alliance switch may be too little too late.
By the way, did anyone else notice Jeff’s black shirt? A little ominous, I thought…
Survivor Re-capper: Joel Anderson
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 ninth special guest is Joel Anderson from Micronesia, as he discusses his thoughts on the season so far, Artis going home, the power switch in alliances, his thoughts of good friend Russ Swan during his brief time on the show, Skupin’s position in the game, Penner and his brief time playing with him on his season, why his kids are rooting for Denise, Abi-Maria and her ‘serial killer’ facial expressions and just what the deal is with Pete and Carter! Joel’s ‘Philippines Four’ answers were:
TIP TO WIN: Denise
DARK HORSE: Carter
NEXT TO GO: Pete
CONTESTANT MOST SIMILAR TO: Russ Swan
Join us next week for our recap of episode 10, featuring special Survivor guest Gary Stritesky from Fiji!