Purple Rock Podcast’s Survivor Gabon Watch-Along: Episodes 7-9

It’s time for Survivor Watch-Along, in which we watch a previous season of the show and invite you all to watch along with us. As promised on the podcast, we’re starting with Survivor: Gabon.

For this Watch-Along, the three of us that haven’t seen Gabon– John, Mark, and Matt- will be watching the season and discussing three episodes here each week. Advance warning: Even though we haven’t seen the season yet, we are aware who wins and we may accidentally spoil that at some point (and commenters may as well). With that out of the way, rejoin us on our descent into Survivor madness.

John:  Episode 7 kinda feels like Gabon in a nutshell so far. First, we get cranky Randy. He’s mad that Susie laughed when he said Fang tribal councils were easier. And then we get the fantastic madness that was the merge feast.

Matt:  Yeah, we need to unpack that because there are games within games.

John:  It’s like a layer cake, only if every layer were something laughable and/or awful.

But let’s start with Randy, King of Gabon, First of His Name. Drunk Randy is the best Randy.

Matt:  It is just Randy, but more Randy. Normal Randy doesn’t have a filter. But Drunk Randy really doesn’t have a filter.

Mark:  Randy on alcohol is like, negative filter.

Gabon- Randy is the king of Gabon with wine glass

Matt:  He is saying all the stuff he wouldn’t even normally think.

Mark:  And claiming credit for everything, naturally.

John:  He’s the puppetmaster! All of these people are his pawns!

Mark:  Which is hilarious given what happened before and after that.

Matt:  Yeah, Randy is definitely not the puppet master. Randy is definitely a pawn.

Mark:  So they think it’s a merge, but wait, multiple twists because why not.

Gabon- Marcus celebrates a merge

Matt:  Yeah, can I say how pissed I am at this second swap?

John:  Not yet.

Because first we have to talk about the immunity idol.

Charlie sees the clue to the immunity idol, which Kenny had seen first. But Kenny was unable to stealthily acquire it for himself, so Charlie grabs it from him and says, “Here everybody, you can read it”. Basically, the Onion Alliance is just cocky as hell. They assume they’ve got this.

Matt:  Oh yeah they are strutting around like, well, Drunk Randy.

John:  So the clue tells you almost exactly where the idol is, and Randy finds it (in his words) “in about seven seconds”.

Matt:  And to be fair to Kenny, he is trying to get Matty to acquire it stealthily because Matty is the closest.

John:  Well there’s his first mistake. Don’t rely on Matty for things.

But the fun begins once the idol is found.

Matt:  Because Marcus convinces everyone to throw it in the ocean with basically no pushback.

John:  Because Drunk Randy takes the idol and sits it right in the middle of the table and then says, “Anybody want it?”

Matt:  Yeah, but Marcus planted that in Randy’s head first. Before they even found it, Marcus said “lets all go find it together and then get rid of it”.

John:  Definitely. But Drunk Randy was the one who was like, “Yes! This is a great idea!”

Mark:  This is like the proto version of the “hide immunity at challenges so everyone can watch you” thing.

Now this is a Kelley who can play the game.
Now this is a Kelley who can play the game.

Matt:  Nah, this was like Blood vs Water 1.

John:  So nobody grabs the idol. Any of you want to suggest that someone should have?

Matt:  Taking the idol is just putting a huge target on your back and I don’t think anyone is the super obvious boot here. Especially before they find out it is not a merge. Because if it is a merge, than that means they just take out your allies and then everyone resents you.

Mark:  Agreed. As much as I wanted someone to go for it, it would have been a bad move.

Matt:  It could buy you a few days, but I think the risks here make me sit on my hands.

John:  Exactly. Not a great idea. Which is why I’m surprised nobody went for it.

But after everyone passes on the chance to grab it, they execute the second stage of Marcus’ plan: Throwing the idol into the ocean. And then, as the idol drifts back in to shore because currents are a thing that exists, they open the box to reveal that we’re not merged yet.

Matt:  Okay, now can I talk about why I hate swap 2?

John:  Do your thing, boo.

Mark:  I’d just like to say that it was clear production didn’t trust them with this swap after they messed up the last two. But logistically, the whole thing is weird. Anyway, Matt, please proceed.

Matt:  This is why it annoys me:

  1. We just watched a forced double boot, making the whole thing feel even more arbitrary and unfair that they have to each boot one person from their tribes and then get swapped up expecting a merge.
  2. This swap is so late that you are building everything to the merge, which basically just makes this a clear chance for smaller groups of people to isolate and eliminate one strong contender.
  3. Why deprive us of the comedy of having them pick tribes again!

John:  Well, here’s further evidence for the theory that this was just thrown together: The “tribal” immunity challenge is an individual immunity challenge.

Matt:  Right! Which deprives Randy of the chance to throw the challenge to protect Corinne and Charlie’s precious, precious Marcus.

John:  I wonder if this was production taking their last shot at preventing a Pagonging from the Onion Alliance.

Matt:  So instead we are going to get a Pagonging of the Onion Alliance.

John:  Probably. But if they had gotten all four Fang on one tribe, or all Kota on one tribe, and either of those tribes had lost, an Onion Alliance member was going home.

Instead, it broke almost perfectly for the Onion Alliance… and the Onion Alliance leader went home.

Matt:  This boiled down the struggle of the season into one discrete conflict where Marcus is trying to win over Susie, and Kenny and Crystal are working her the other way.

Mark:  But you have to give Crystal some credit here.

John:  Do you?

Matt:  Yeah do you?


Mark:  Kenny too, but it was made to appear that Crystal had the defining conversation to swing Susie.

Matt:  Mmmm not sure of that.

Mark:  Susie also had it out for Corinne, and could use this as a strike back, but she was waffling.

Matt:  This is where I will give Crystal credit: She had a cousin that Marcus knew in real life.

John:  I loved the “My best friend is friends with your cousin, so we’re clearly friends now.”

Mark:  ATL represent! But that should have swung her the other way. Marcus just picked the wrong target. Would anyone have objected to Susie going home?

Matt:  Nope, and that was what I was going to bring up. Marcus’ biggest mistake this episode was in how he played this vote. Now maybe Kenny and Crystal use a Susie vote to try and sway her.

Matt:  But Marcus should have been telling Crystal and Kenny different stuff than what he was telling Susie. If Marcus wants Kenny gone, he should tell Susie that and he should tell Crystal he wants Susie gone. Also Crystal’s big “sway” of Susie was “he can’t promise you final three, the rest of his alliance won’t let him”, but come on, of course they would let Marcus do whatever he wants. The rest of Marcus’ alliance freaking loves him like he is JT.

John:  But you know who could promise Susie final three right then and didn’t (that we saw)? Crystal! She’s only really aligned with Kenny. Matty is their third by default.

Mark:  Yeah, but this is the same woman who thought tribal immunity made you a Survivor god.

Matt:  Right, and I think Susie should have flipped. This is a good move for her.

John:  Yeah, we said this as soon as they split the vote on her. She needed to flip immediately, and she did.

Matt:  Especially since that Onion Alliance did such a bad job of reassuring her.

John:  As an added bonus, she got to take out the leader of that alliance.

Matt:  Right. Whereas if it is a merge and she flips the best she can do is tie it up.

John:  One thing we forgot to mention: That “tribal” immunity challenge.

Crystal is the worst, y’all.

Gabon- Crystal immediate challenge failure

Mark:  Seriously. 2 seconds!

Matt:  Sugar did better!

Mark:  Jeff is a lot bitchier this season too. “Hey Matty, shut up and play. Oh hey your board is almost off. Again.”

John:  Jeff is so cranky. Someone shit in that man’s cornflakes. Actually, this whole cast probably did.

Mark:  And then when Corrine tries to act like Fang is Target in its bougie pronunciation, he mocks her. No wonder the man wanted a talk show.

John:  He mocks her, but in the very next episode he calls them Fang.

Mark:  Even better, he mocks them in the episode preview. “New Fang, same as the old Fong”

John:  Salty Probst.

Matt:  I love Jeff mocking them in the episode previews. He is just done with this cast.

Mark:  I’m surprised Lynne Spillman (Ed. note: the casting director) kept her job. But then again, the Tocantins cast was great.

John:  Maybe they held back all the good casting choices for Tocantins instead.

Matt:  Oh, so I want to mention something about tribal. At tribal, it is clear that Susie is the swing vote and Bob says to Jeff “hey, if I knew we were going to swap and not merge I would have changed my vote”. Meaning, “hey Susie, I should have voted you out last tribal, now please side with me and Marcus, okay!”

John:  Bob, master of the social game. He’s legitimately worse than Michele. At least she generally kept her foot out of her mouth.

Mark:  Agreed. It took this season to realize that. (God help me if I watch Nicaragua…)

So yeah, Marcus is out, draws what I think is a Dreamcast logo on his Kenny vote, and becomes the first jury member. More proof this whole thing was thrown together. Has there been a juror with tribes before? I’m sure I’m forgetting something.

Matt:  HvVCook Islands.

John:  Yeah, not the first time this has happened.

Matt:  Nor the last.

John:  Episode 8 starts with Social Mastermind Bob getting a confessional to tell us that he’s doomed. Actually, he says, “I’m history, even though I teach science. That was a little joke.”

So now Bob is Mark’s favorite player ever.

Bob workshopping another "joke" in his thinking chair
Bob workshopping another “joke” in his thinking chair

Mark:  And you people think I’m bad. Even I rolled my eyes at that one.

John:  Oh, you’re bad. Bob is just worse.

Matt:  Yeah that joke was awful. That was sub-dad level joke.

John:  Then we get Corinne’s confessional: “I just can’t wait to see Marcus.”

John:  Yeah so Charlie isn’t the only one who is thirsty for Marcus. Naturally, that leads into one of the most famous Survivor GIFs there is: Corinne, Sugar, and Matty seeing that Marcus got voted out.

Gabon- Corinne Sugar Matty react to Marcus being voted out
Taste the sad, Michael!

Matt:  YES! Matty is so happy he is grinning so freaking big. I love it.

John:  Corinne is legit devastated. Sugar is probably just shocked. But Matty? Matty is like “FUCK YEAH, BRO!”

Matt:  Yes it is great. [Editor’s note from Andy: what makes it perfect is that none of the reactions are simultaneous. We get to take it in all in sequence.]

John:  And the fun doesn’t stop there, because Corinne tells the other tribe “Marcus didn’t deserve that”.

Mark:  And the whole bitch-fight about “deserving” to be there? This isn’t final tribal, people.

John:  To which Kenny- KENNY!- responds, “Who does deserve that?” Now that is a revenge of the nerd moment, Mark.

Mark:  I was ahead of the curve.

John:  There’s your scrawny hero rising up against the pretty mean girl!

And the handsome jock.

Matt:  And the gay guy.

John:  And Drunk Randy.

Mark:  Indistinguishable from Sober Randy.

Matt:  It is like a Breakfast Club. Marcus is Emilio Estevez.

Mark:  Yeah, and the nerds are about to have their lunch.

BOOM, now that is a good pun.

Matt:  Wait, no, Marcus is the other guy. Charlie is Estevez. Randy is the spaz Anthony Michael Hall.

John:  Marcus is Bender?

Matt:  Wait no, Randy is Ally Sheedy!

And Bob is Anthony Michael Hall

John:  I feel like this analogy is falling apart.

Matt:  No it works dammit.

Mark:  Bob is a serial killer?

John:  Prove to me that he isn’t.

Matt:  Mark is thinking of Michael C. Hall, btw.

John:  I know. Anyway, let’s talk golf. Slingshot golf.

Mark:  For as ridiculous as this season has been, there are some really cool challenges.

John:  Is it just me, or are there a lot of challenges on this season that just seem really fun?

Matt:  Yeah, this season has fun challenges.

John:  When we all meet up at PurpleRockCon someday, let’s play slingshot golf. And Human Plinko.

Mark:  Human…Plinko?

Matt:  The challenge that Ace lost by listening to Randy

Mark:  OH. I thought we were throwing humans down the game board and adding pegs.

John:  If you make one more bad pun, Emma might throw you down the game board.

Wait, no. Emma can’t lift things.

Mark:  She was adept at the Paley Center Survivor challenges!

Matt:  Those were all just balancing balls and holding balls.

John:  Don’t….

Let’s move on.


Matt:  When Kota is practicing for the challenge they launch a ball and Matty goes running after it like a golden retriever.

John:  Get it, boy!

Matt:  Haha yes!

John:  That would’ve been the ideal role for Dan if he were still around.

Matt:  And then I forgot to mention this in the Marcus sad off: but Charlie mentions that three power players have just been voted out in Ace, Dan and Marcus. Which, lol Dan as a power player.

John:  Dan wouldn’t be a power player if this were Tic-Tac-Toe.

Mark:  Dan would just keep marking the center square.

Matt:  The challenge has the most Gabon moment in the entire season.

John:  Yes! The highlight of the slingshot golf challenge is Randy, Matty, and Charlie. They’re about 6 inches from the goal. It’s the easiest shot you can have.

Matt:  And them arguing over something that is blindingly obvious for an excessively long time. That was a rancorous argument too!

Gabon- Matty and Randy arguing at reward challenge
“I will fucking cut you!”

John:  Oh, Randy was enraged! He was even pissed after they won the reward! Probst even said, “This should be a fun afternoon.”

Matt:  This is why I enjoy Randy. He is going to find the worst in everything and he holds grudges.

John:  His opinion changed on Kenny, though. He says Kenny is all grown up now. And Kenny really has gotten an odd dose of confidence.

Matt:  And he and Matty seem to weirdly get along.

Gabon- Kenny and Matty share a moment

John:  Well, with that one exception we just noted.

Mark:  One quick note about the reward: Cultural rewards are my favorite thing each season. And this was fun. Corinne and the child. Like, eww.

John:  Randy had a lady interested in him!

Matt:  Hahahaha I love Randy “flirting”.

Mark:  Randy can smile genuinely, guys!

John:  With or without alcohol? Were we clear on that?

Matt:  Unclear. I think Randy has one true love. And that love is alcohol.

John:  Oh, and since Randy’s tribe won reward, that meant that Sugar was ineligible for exile!

Matt:  So they send Bob there.

John:  And Bob also plows through all the clues, proving that Dan really is just that dumb. But since there is no idol there, Bob decides to make one. And holy shit, it’s a good one.

Gabon- Bob's fake immunity idol

Matt:  It is honestly better looking than some of the idols the show has done over the years. Mark, we need your artist’s assessment.

John:  Mark couldn’t make something like that because it involves touching nature.

Mark:   Bob did a great job given the fact he had to put that together in a day with random stuff. It was really impressive. Maybe more than Joey Amazing’s. The middle portion looks obviously fake, but the tendrils look legit. And I’m excited because it builds up the one thing I’ve seen from this season.

And I enjoy nature, thank you.

Speaking of Bob, how adorable is his buff bow tie?

John:  Hard pass on bow ties.

Matt:  But using the buff is funny.

John:  Eh, sure. Bob is good at being outside and making things. He’s just not great at Survivor. Actually, he’s not great at making fire, surprisingly. Because Susie won the immunity challenge, which was to build a fire and burn the rope.

Matt:  Yeah how the fuck did Susie win that challenge!?

Susie and Sugar! That was unexpected

John:  Susie and Sugar were the only ones to get a flame going!

Matt:  I like Randy’s assessment of Crystal’s chances: “you could give Crystal a book of matches and gasoline and she couldn’t start fire”.

John:  Well, Randy built just as much of a fire as Crystal did here.

Mark:  Was Susie a fire tender at Kota?

John:  She claimed she was the one always working, and that Corinne wasn’t.

Mark:  Because she was the only one who knew what she was doing. Even Sugar just threw a bunch of shit on her flame.

Matt:  Seriously, how do none of these people know how to make a fire this far in? Oh right, because Gabon.

John:  But let’s talk very, very briefly about the merge tribe name. Nobag. This is Kenny’s fault. So, by proxy, I blame Mark.

Gabon- Nobag flag
Worst. Tribe Name. Ever.

Mark:  A rare black mark on his resume.

Matt:  Sound reasoning John.

Mark:  That said, I don’t hate it. I’m just bored.

John:  Hey, just like Gabon! Actually, I’m not even bored by Gabon.

Matt:  Yeah, this season is not boring.

John:  It’s interestingly terrible so far.

Mark:  Agreed. It’s fun. Like most reality TV.

Mark:  It’s very… Amazing Race. A bunch of people yelling at each other, failing at running, and being mildly entertaining for five minutes each week.

Matt:  I wouldn’t know. But it is not boring in the way a B-movie is not boring. Because you spend most of the time heckling the TV.

John:  So we’re Mystery Science Theater 3000?

Matt:  Yes. And this is The Pumaman.

John:  B-movie Survivor.

Mark:  The black guy did die early on. Oh wait, that’s B-horror.

John:  And Sugar is involved, which does make it feel very B-movie. Hey, speaking of Sugar, she’s the swing vote once they find out the merge is happening.

Matt:  And Corinne is sure she has her on her side despite the fact that they obviously hate each other. False confidence and a terrible read of other people, classic qualities in a returning player Corinne!

Seriously, she is terrible. She is Randy without the wit or occasional moments of being good at something.

Mark:  No wit and a terrible read on people? That’s who I want hosting a podcast!


John:  Corinne admits that she’s been treating Sugar like shit for 25 days. But after being nice to her for one day, she thinks she got Sugar back on her side.

Mark:  That’s how interpersonal skills work!

John:  Because she assumes Sugar is gullible. Which she is! But she’s also gullible for other people. My favorite part of all this is that everyone seems to know Sugar is the swing vote. So what do they do? Each side dictates the vote to her.

Matt:  Classic Gabon!

John:  Nobody says, “hey Sugar, who would you want to vote out?”

Matt:  Seriously why not let her vote out Randy?

John:  Do whatever it takes to get her vote! You need it!

Oh, and Randy at tribal council is fun.

Mark:  Um, are we calling that fun? Because I’m starting to get annoyed.

John:  Fun in the sense that you can see why some people hate him now.

Mark:  That was uncomfortable coded racism. But at least his assholability got him called out during the vote.

John:  Crystal asks Randy why he hates her, and he gives her a list. And he politely offers to give her additional reasons, but Crystal declines.

Matt:  Randy is never going to pass up an opportunity to be a dick. He relishes those opportunities.

John:  He certainly didn’t when he was voting. Because he used his voting confessional to say “Bitch.”

That was it. No additional commentary.

Mark:  Dick Randy is fun! Calling Crystal and GC “your posse” terrorizing camp is another thing.

John:  Yeah, Drunken King of Gabon Randy is my favorite Randy. That’s what I want more of.

Oh, and tribal council gave me one more chance to use another one of my Gabon autotexts: Sugar cried again. Both at tribal council and while voting.

If anyone ever got dehydrated in this season, they could just lick Sugar’s face.

Matt:  Too much salt [editor’s note: Salt? Sugar? Frankly, I’m disappointed that Mark didn’t do something with this.]

Charlie also said about Sugar, “Sugar has played this game very differently from everyone else”. Which I found to be an amusing summation of Sugar’s game thus far.

John:  It’s putting it mildly.

Mark:  Charlie is so thirsty for Marcus in his vote-off confessional. I’m excited for them to bring their babies to tribal from now on.

Gabon- Marcus and Charlie are gonna do it

And boom, another blindside, for a genuinely nice guy. RIP Charlie.

John: Let’s discuss what is easily the best episode of Gabon so far (and let’s be honest, it’s probably going to be the best episode of the season).

Matt: Yeah, it will all be downhill from here.

Because we lost Randy.

John: The “previously on” segment reminds us that:
A) Kenny is now a mastermind, but more importantly,
B) There are two idols out there: Sugar’s idol, and Bob’s art supply closet masterpiece.

Matt: Which is important because one of those is getting played tonight.

John: And as you mentioned, this is Randy’s boot episode. So we get a lot of Randy.

You’re not going to believe this, but Randy is a total dick. And the show wants to make sure we know it.

He starts with a conversation with Corinne in which he says he doesn’t like any of these people, and he can’t pretend to. And that transitions perfectly into the auction, which might be my favorite Survivor auction of all time. It’s definitely a contender.

Matt: It is a damn good auction. And, again, like everything in Gabon, something small somehow sums up the entire season.

Matt: Kenny has all the power from stealing Bob’s money and doesn’t use it. (Because Kenny is going to lose guys).

John: Well, the very first item is a bucket of beers. And Randy, perhaps sensing that I’m egging him on years later as I watch, is going to win them.

Matt: Damn straight he is! Don’t part a Randy from his beers

John: Sure, Randy at an auction would be nice. But if this is going to be Randy’s parting shot, we’re going to get some Drunk Randy.

Matt: The best version of Randy.

John: Randy is just bidding on everything right away. But Kenny outbids him for that blind item. And the blind item lets Kenny boot someone from the auction and steal all of that person’s money. So Kenny pays $340, boots Bob, and gets Bob’s $500.

So now Kenny has $660.

Matt: And then he buys nothing else

Mark: And doesn’t use any of it!

Matt: Yeah I saw that pattern coming and was laughing at it.

Mark: I mean, he didn’t need the advantage, but he doesn’t know that. So much for being a mastermind.

Matt: I even like the one where he let it go last second. And said don’t worry it is something terrible.

And it definitely was not terrible.

Mark: Well he knew enough to know about the punking Jeff does with gross food sometimes.

But these were all really good rewards!

John: But we did get to see Ladies Man Kenny. Because when there was a bath and clean clothes up for bid, Sugar offers to snuggle with Kenny if he wins it.

And Kenny responds with, “Will you cuddle with a rich man?”

Mark: Kenny could give me some tips.

Matt: Instead Susie wins it and spends approximately 30 seconds in the bath.

Mark: Sugar is used to people paying her to cuddle.

Matt: There goes Mark again, demeaning women who use their sexuality. Next you are going to say they aren’t people.

John: Typical Mark.

But yeah, Susie wins that reward and takes a 30-second bath. Now sure, it might be awkward to bathe in front of people. But once I got in that tub, I’d be bidding and having Probst deliver my items to me like he’s my manservant.

Mark: Producers were probably hoping for some Sugar or Corinne butt shots.

Matt: Who did that in Micronesia?

John: Kim did it in One World. But I wish Randy had won that bath. Because you know he would have been like “Probst, bring me my spaghetti and breadsticks!”

Mark: This isn’t Olive Garden…

Matt: Randy doesn’t know that

John: Instead, Randy won Angie Layton’s ideal reward: cookies.

A cookies joke? Is Angie Layton gonna have to cut a bitch?
A cookies joke? Is Angie Layton gonna have to cut a bitch?

And Probst informs Randy that he can share the cookies with everyone. How nice!

Matt:  Not can. He has to share the cookies with everyone.

Has to.

John: But Randy ain’t interested. He actually asks Probst if he can keep them all to himself. This is Peak Randy.

Mark: Probst is so over these guys by now.

“Kenny has money but wastes it. Randy these are For. The. Tribe.”

Matt: This is the season that almost drove Probst to quit right?

Because that makes sense.

Mark: Yep. And understandably so.

John: So Randy goes around and offers everyone a cookie.

Sugar turns him down. Multiple times. But perhaps because he heard about Crystal’s rule that even if someone repeatedly refuses your offer of food you should save her some, Randy gives his own cookie to Sugar.

…which Sugar immediately hands to Matty.

Matt: I think he offered it to her again at the end to prove some sort of point. Because they were arguing over him not giving her one the entire time.

When she turned it down.

John: Oh, Randy was absolutely just being a dick here.

Mark: Guys, give Sugar some slack. She gets enough sugar every day. [Editor’s note: there’s the Sugar/sweet pun I was looking for from Mark].

Matt: But if she doesn’t want the cookie, she should have either taken it right there and then or, you know, not taken it at all. I mean, I appreciate trolling Randy. But I would have gotten annoyed at her too.

John: We can discuss the fallout of Cookieghazi right after we acknowledge that Randy tips Probst at the end of the auction. It was like the cherry on top of that beautiful auction scene.

Matt: Randy tipping Probst is just the best thing ever.

Mark: Probst got to keep that, I hope.

Matt: Probst kinda smiled at it too.

John: Maybe that $20 is what convinced Probst to come back for Tocantins.

Matt: He definitely thought “hey maybe this will be a thing from now on!”

John: But back at camp, Randy acts like a congressional Republican and will not let Cookieghazi die. It’s all part of his campaign to be completely intolerable to others.

Matt: The best part is he is about to start being even worse. And Matty sees him start and goes: “don’t do this”.

Mark: “Dude, don’t do this. No. Man…”

John: Matty’s response is the best!

It’s how I want to respond to everyone on r/Survivor that starts in about Nicaragua being an underrated gem.

But perhaps because Matty sees right through Randy’s shtick, Matty’s proposal is that they get rid of Bob next. Because Bob is a huge threat.

Mark: Literally!

John: Maybe Matty could just hear the helicopter flying overhead to get Bob’s over-the-top winner’s edit shot on top of a mountain, lording over all the lands beneath him.

Matt: Practically Earl-esque

John: I can imagine watching this season in real time and finding that shot of Bob incredibly jarring, though. Because at this point, nothing else about Bob would have signaled to me that he was a potential winner.

Matt: He has been getting a little more screen time since Marcus got voted out.

Mark: Never at camp though. Until the idol swap.

John: If there were Bob Truthers back then, I would have been telling them to go fuck themselves.

Mark: This is far worse than Michelle. Even giving the fake idol to Randy was Sugar’s idea.

Mark: And they made a point of showing Bob tripping at the immunity challenge!

John: Yeah, even the plan to punk Randy wasn’t Bob’s idea.

Mark: This show is not interested in painting him as anything other than crafty with idols (see: last week, preview for next week)

John: One interesting part about Bob giving Randy the idol: when accepting it, Randy says, “If you’re at final tribal council and I’m not, you’ve got my vote.” We’ll see if he holds to that.

Matt: I forgot that, but yeah we’ll keep that in mind. So should we just skip to the important part?

John:  Definitely.

Matt:  So, tribal council.

Randy’s plan to drive them even crazier worked.

Everyone knows that Randy is getting the votes.

And for some reason Randy is going to use his idol to take out that huge threat… Susie.

John: Oh, Randy admits it’s not strategy, it’s personal.

Matt: Right. Which is what makes it funny.

John: And Corinne’s voting confessional also notes that “Payback’s a bitch.”

Matt: Corinne never has any idea what is happening.

John: But why are we wasting time discussing those voting confessionals. These pale in comparison. One voting confessional rules them all.

Matt: Crystal!

Mark: And everyone can hear her.

Matt: I love Crystal just yelling.



So at that point, I’m pretty sure Randy knows his plan worked.

Mark: It’s like she’s been practicing with these confessionals the last few weeks in order to reach perfection.

Matt: And I love how it cuts back to the rest of them and shows their faces while they are listening to her.

God, that was beautiful.

John: Oh, the reaction shots are fantastic.

Matt: And Randy definitely thought his plan was going to work.

This is the moment when King Randy takes control people!

John: This is it! Randy’s revenge!

As soon as Randy stands up, Crystal is just choking back the laughter. By the time Probst announces that it’s not a real idol, Sugar and Crystal are practically in tears from laughter.

survivor-gabon-sugar -laughing

Matt: Yeah them choking back their laughter until it just explodes is fantastic

John: Less amused? Randy, who stares daggers at Bob.

Matt: And Bob looks juuuuuust a bit ashamed.

John: And Corinne, whose face is balled up in rage.

Matt: Is Bob the only one in on the plan who isn’t laughing?

Mark: Kenny smiled. Bob didn’t say a word. Just kinda hung out like “whoops”

John: And with that, the King of Gabon has been slain.

Matt: The King is dead, long live the King

John: What a way to go out.

Ok, let’s get an update on current favorites and predictions.

Matt: So we are left with frankly the dregs of the season.

Mark: If we didn’t know the winner, this could be an exciting sprint to the finish.

Matt: Corinne and Bob are all that remain of their alliance and neither is any good at this game.

Mark: Bob still has options in Sugar though. And he’s proven to be crafty. Dumb, but crafty.

Matt: Yea and I think Kenny and crystal especially are going to get too big for their britches. But Kenny will be targeted as the mastermind.

Basically I think the pagonging takes a rest and Kenny goes home next because people recognize him as a threat. Alternatively maybe Kenny turns on Matty as a challenge threat.

John: But if we were watching this live with no knowledge of who would win, who would we be rooting for at this point? Kenny?

Matt: Yeah Kenny, he took control from a disadvantage and seems to be playing well now.

Certainly not Crystal or Sugar or Corinne.

John: I’m entertained by Crystal’s awfulness, but I would never root for her to win.

Matt:  Maybe Bob would be my second rooting favorite. Actually, I enjoyed Matty these past few episodes. Matty might be my number 2.

John: Every person left has been shown to be inept strategically/socially at least once.

Matt:  The Kenny thing though is that he is getting better at the game.

John: Yeah, at least there’s an arc that suggests Kenny is improving.

Matt: Like a gamer learning the tricks of a new game.

John: The trick of the game is to play against people who suck at it.

Matt: Crystal is definitely not improving.

John: So our favorite at this point is Kenny by default? Except for Mark, whose answer is just Kenny.

Mark: With Randy gone as the entertainment, I hope the bumbling duo of Bob and Sugar fill the void. But as far as actual gameplay, yeah Kenny is continuing to shine (kinda).

Matt: I think Kenny is playing well enough.

Mark: Crystal is grating as an underdog. Matty isn’t bad. But he’s just so surfer bro.

Matt: I find Matty’s bro-ness hilarious he has won me over

Mark: Matty is fun, yeah. But will he get taken out at 5 for being a threat.

Susie …I’m not sure about her.

Matt: Susie is there.

I think Susie is kinda like Sugar in that they both have this sort of cunning enough to realize they are in the bottom but they can’t do anything once they are out of that.

Mark: Predictions: Corinne falls, Bob weasels his way in and causes rifts.

Matt: Bob isn’t causing the rifts.

Mark: He’s lying about idols next episode!

Matt: The rifts will occur regardless of anything he does.

Mark: Ok, fair enough.

Matt: Yea no one is going to believe him.

I say the alliance turns on itself and ether Kenny or Matty go next followed by Corinne and then the other of Kenny or Matty

John:  I say Corinne next, then Matty. Thus setting up Matt’s nightmarish final five prediction from last week.