Last time on Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers, Ben played his idol at a crazy tribal council, and Lauren was voted out. Even half an idol and the secret advantage of an extra vote couldn't save her.
This episode of Survivor, titled "The Survivor Devil," is pivotal as we get down to the wire and closer to the one million dollar prize.
Smart, But Probably Doomed
After the chaotic tribal council, Ben is basking in the knowledge that he put a target on his back and then used the idol to eliminate Lauren. When Ben goes to get water, the rest of the tribe decides that Ben needs to go next, no matter what. Everyone is still in shock that Ben had an idol and no one knew. Although his fellow tribe mates admire his strategy, Ben has demonstrated just how smart, and dangerous, a player he is. Devon tells Ben that he made a mistake by voting out Lauren, and Devon warns Ben that he will not let Ben win immunity. Yikes!
The next morning, while his tribe mates slumber peacefully, Ben sneaks off to "gather wood," which is apparently the code for "searching for an idol." Ben comes up empty.
For this challenge, the contestants will be randomly divided into teams. Each pair must transverse an obstacle course while tied together with ropes. Once the course is completed, each team must land five rings on a target. Once again, this challenge looks difficult, especially the parts involving the wooden pallets that are in the water. The winners will take a chopper to a resort on a private island, where they will dine on chicken, lamb, lobster, and chocolate mousse. They will celebrate with cocktails and sleep in a real bed.
Ben and Ashley are paired together, as are Chrissy and Devon. Dr. Mike and Ryan are the final team, and they get off to a rough start when they get tangled up in the ropes. It ends up being a pretty close race. Devon and Chrissy win, and they can take one other person with them. Devon requests a moment to confer, and they choose Ryan, who is down to just skin and bones. Ashely cannot hide her shock that Devon and Chrissy did not choose her. Since she and Devon have a tight bond, she implies that Chrissy is the one making the decisions.
Back at camp, the tribe members who were not selected for the reward are not happy campers. In fact, Dr. Mike suggests that they take a moment to air out their frustrations. Dr. Mike is furious that Chrissy and Devon would choose Ryan over him, and he suspects that Devon is going to use this opportunity to try and re-ignite his bromance and alliance, with Ryan. Ben tries to talk to Ashley, but she is not interested in working with him. Say what you will about Ben, but he has true grit and determination.
Chrissy, Ryan, and Devon are thrilled with their reward. The feast looks amazing, and as soon as they are done eating, the talk turns to the game. They all agree that Ben is going next, but also discuss how Dr. Mike is dangerous. They all believe that he would get a lot of jury votes if he is in the final three. The trio decides that they will go to the final three together, and form a new alliance. Devon is happy that he and Ryan have come full circle since the game first started and they were an alliance. (The bromance is back, baby!) Chrissy, of course, decides that she wants Ashley out first. Chrissy states that the reason is to break up the bond between Devon and Ashley, but it seems like she is retaliating for Ashley's comments about the reward.
The contestants must race through an obstacle course, and toss sand bags into baskets that release wooden ladder rungs. When the tribe members finally reach the top platform, they will work on a cog puzzle. When the puzzle pieces are successfully turned, the contestant's flag will be released. This puzzle looks ridiculously complicated. It is a close race but Chrissy wins immunity, much to Ben's disappointment. Chrissy revels in the power that she has, and contemplates whether she wants to get rid of Ben or Ashley first. Talk about being drunk with power!
When they reach camp, Ben once again goes to get water, and look for an idol. Once he is out of earshot, the group discusses his fate. Ashely wants to split the vote between Ben and Dr. Mike in case one of them has an idol. Chrissy, Ryan, and Devon have a discussion, and Dr. Mike insists that Ben must go next. Chrissy raises the prospect of getting rid of Ashley before Ben, and Devon is shocked.
As Ben heads back to camp, he sees an arrow painted on a tree. He discovers a clue to the location of an idol. The idol is tied to the underside of the bed at camp. Since the bed is in plain view of everyone, Ben is going to have to use some sneaky moves to recover it before tribal council.
Jeff raises the issue of Ashley's shock and dismay when she wasn't chosen for the reward because of her tight relationship with Devon. Chrissy is still angry because of Ashley's reaction. Five of the tribe members admit to having a final three, which is confusing to me. Ben is still a loner trying to find a crack somewhere. Dr. Mike keeps re-stating his case that Ben is wily, tricky, and dangerous. Ben tells Jeff that he wants to cut to the chase and pulls an immunity idol out of his boot and puts it around his neck. Ben makes a noise like an explosion, but Chrissy responds that Ben is overexaggerating the importance of his move.
But why did Ben bust the idol out now before the vote? Ben suggests to Ashley that they vote out Dr. Mike. When Devon questions whether Ben will play the idol, Ben hands it to Jeff. Ben gloats about how he has made it to the final five and exploded everyone else's plans.
Ashley is the thirteenth person voted out of Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers, and becomes the sixth member of the jury. She is stunned, and Ben hugs her on her way to have Jeff extinguish her torch. When Devon tries to hug her, she brushes by him.
Were you surprised that Ben revealed his idol so early? Was Chrissy being oversensitive about Ashley's reaction to not being invited on the reward? Were you surprised that Devon voted out Ashley? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.
(Image courtesy of CBS)