Australian Survivor week 9. Twists and twists and twists and twists and spaghetti, spaghetti.

Welcome back for week 9 of Big Brother Canada, wait, sorry, I meant Australian Survivor coverage. Things are happening.

This dog would be better at Survivor than most of these people.
This dog would be better at Survivor than most of these people.

“Episode 22”

So that was something, huh? It was a weird, confusing something, but it happened and was interesting. Was this episode a mess? Sure. But it was a fun mess. I’ll take this over episode after episode of Saanapu marching to the end and being pompous dicks about it.

We come back to camp and shit is tense. Sam has a confessional where he lays out that the two options at tribal were things going his way and things not going his way. That is some brilliant analysis. Lee says that he knows he was a target, and Sam’s response is basically “I’m sorry if you offended by that.” It’s like Sam is a self-righteous dick or something. The next morning, Flick takes Matt aside to shore things up, and he manages to out-douche Sam by claiming he’s the only person in the game who’s been completely honest. Somebody call the whambulance, because there’s an outbreak of crybabyitis going on in Samoa, and the situation looks critical.

After that, things start moving. Lee, El, and Flick convene to plan their next move, which is to vote out Kristie. Unfortunately, Kristie figures out that it’s weird her supposed alliance is having a conversation without her, so she heads over to check things out, and nobody has a good answer. The next 20 minutes is some of the most awkward Survivor I have ever seen. Everyone seems to realize that now is the time to start playing, but everyone has also gone so long without playing they just don’t know what to do. The result is like watching a bunch of freshman boys trying to get to second base at the spring dance.

Kristie pulls in Matt for a plan to blindside El. El and Flick realize something is weird and go off to scout. They catch Kristie as she’s finishing up outlining her plan. She claims to have just gotten back from the bathroom, and the tone of El’s response makes it clear she doesn’t believe her. Cut to Kristie in confessional gloating about how El was totally fooled. At this point I realized what’s so offputting about her; if Kristie just gave confessionals about how she was playing a better game than people realized I would be like, “yeah, you are,” but everything she says about herself is Russell Hantz-levels of grandiose. It’s shades of Kass in Cagayan.

Lee has a sit-down with Kristie, because he’s apparently taken over Phoebe’s role of seeing her as his weird little sister. Meanwhile, in the shelter, Matt and Sam make the most awkward pitch ever to Flick, but it seems to work on her because Flick is getting super paranoid at this point.

We’re 25 minutes in and… reward challenge? Something is up. It’s a weird hybrid of ‘memorize a bunch of stuff in a box” and “use a rope to establish coordinates so you can dig up a bag of puzzle pieces.” It’s fine. Lee gets his bag first, but Matt gets his second. At this point, obviously Matt is winning. His reward is a spa visit, but he’s not going alone. He also doesn’t get to pick who he’s going with, that’s going to be decided at a mystery tribal council.

At camp, Matt and Sam continue to needle Flick and Kristie. Matt has a confessional where he talks about how they’re slowly chipping away at the girls’ armor, which is weird, given that it was Kristie who first approached Matt. Sometimes I feel like Matt doesn’t really have his finger on the pulse, and, by sometimes, I mean always.

The mystery tribal council turns out to be a game of slam book, and, heck yes, slam book! This couldn’t have come at a better time, especially with how pointed these questions are. I have exactly two complaints: 1.) five strikes is too many, slam book should be 3 and done, but, more importantly, 2.) where is the jury? You’re gonna bring everyone to tribal council to air their dirty laundry and not have the jury watch? Missed opportunity, Australian Survivor.

Flick ultimately wins and gets to go on reward with Matt. But there’s another twist: they get to pick someone to go with them. They do the smart thing and pick Kristie, giving Matt time to work his new alliance and Flick the chance to solidify a bond with someone she’ll need either way.

And then there’s another twist, and seriously now, this is getting a bit much. For some reason, the remaining players aren’t going back to camp, they’re spending the night at exile beach. This little bit of overkill didn’t destroy what came before, but it was sort of a “really, now?” moment to end the episode. You have momentum now, Australian Survivor. You don’t need to mess with things.

“Episode 23”

Okay, so we basically got tonight what everyone said was gonna happen. But wow, what a journey to get there. Our Australian survivors are still terrible at Survivor, but at least they’re doing things.

We start with the tail end of the reward. Flick, Kristie, and Matt bond over brunch, while solidifying their plan to vote out El and Lee. Meanwhile, over at exile beach, Sam, El, and Lee are absolutely miserable. Sam talks about how he knows his head is on the chopping block, and his only options are to win immunity or flip Flick and Kristie.

Cut straight to reward, which is for an unspecified advantage in the immunity challenge. Two teams of three run a relay where one player splits a coconut and the next runs a bowl of the juice through an obstacle course then pours it into the third’s mouth so they can run across a web net to spit it into a beaker. The teams are… reward vs. exile, which seems like a dick move, but Kristie absolutely cannot get the juice into Flick’s mouth (yes, phrasing) and allows the exile team to come from behind for a win.

Back at camp, everyone knows things are tense. There’s a long thing about how Lee and El’s bond is becoming more personal, which is… boring? Let’s go with boring. This episode did not need to be 70 minutes.

Then Kristie decides to Kristie it up by getting super weepy for no clear reason. Flick gets nervous about her new alliance and decides it’s a good idea to play the middle and tells Lee and El the others are gunning for them. She has a confessional where she explains how she’s keeping a foot in both camps. Has that worked for anyone who’s not Kim Spradlin, ever?

Immunity. Its the thing where you balance on a doghouse in the ocean. The winning team gets to sit out the first ten minutes. I skipped forward 10 minutes. Lee wins.

So now it’s back at camp and the scramble is on. Flick takes Kristie aside to confirm the target is El. Krisie confirms Flick’s suspicions by getting weepy and deciding she has to come clean to Lee. She does, explaining that she was balancing her loyalties against her chances of winning. Lee scolds her for thinking about the end and tells her this game moves too fast. As someone who has to write about this show, Lee, no it does not. Everything Lee says after this is word salad and I start wondering if cricket is a sport where you can get hit in the head.

Lee and El convene, and they think Kristie sounds like a crazy person. Thank you for finally noticing! They don’t believe that Flick would flip, and then flip back again. It’s literally impossible that you could win Survivor like that. Nobody has ever done such a thing.

So off to tribal council. There’s a lot of talk about how Lee and El are in power. El denies this, and points the finger at Kristie and Flick as the swing votes. Jonathan LaPaglia continues his tradition of asking everyone if they know how they’re voting because seriously this episode is 70 minutes.

At the last minute, Lee decides to deploy his advantage. He uses it on Sam, which actually is smart, since Sam probably was targeting El. The votes come in. 2 for Matt. 2 for Sam. 1 for El. On the revote, it’s a landslide for Sam. So that particularly insurgency is crushed, but the previews indicate next week is still gonna be awkward and confusing.