Two Tribes, One Camp,
No Rules (Manono)
TO READ THE HAPPENINGS AT SALANI
Twenty-three times before, Americans
have been stranded in the middle of nowhere (though mostly the ocean)
and were told to live off the land for 39 days, voting off one of
their own along the way. In the end, one Sole Survivor would be
crowned and be rewarded with a million-dollar check. But it all
starts with dividing the group into tribes and sending them to separate
beaches. In this 24th rendition of the reality show that started
the trend of reality shows,...that's gonna change..
DAY 1: A TIME TO GIVE, A TIME
We're not too far from
where the PREVIOUS edition took place. We're still in Samoa and
the 18 Americans have arrived via truck. Like three times before,
the tribes have been divided by gender. Chico gets the ladies in
Salani, I get the men of Manono (which is good because, LAST time
I did the male tribe of a male vs. female Survivor, the lone
male beat four girls to win). And they are...
- Jay Byars: 25, Gaffney, SC
- Colton Cumbie: 21, Monroeville, AL
- Michael Jefferson: 30, Seattle
- Leif Manson: 27, San Diego
- Jonas Otsuji: 37, Lehi, UT
- Bill Posley: 28, Venice, CA
- Matt Quinlan: 33, San Francisco
- Troy Robertson: 50, Miami
- Greg Smith: 64, Houston
And, no, you don't have
to check your glasses; Leif truly is a midg...er,...a "vertically
challenged" person, the first EVER on Survivor (and
7 1/2 years after Charla ran The Amazing Race).
Ah, and arriving by chopper
is Uncle Jeff Probst, ready to put these people through the ringer.
Colton thinks the guys look "good-looking" in a way that,
even if you didn't pay attention to his speech, you'd KNOW his sexual
preferences. Greg, the eldest of these Survivors, says he will go
by "Tarzan". Troy doesn't like that; he considers himself
After dividing up the
tribes, Uncle Jeff gives us 60 ticks of his Timex to grab whatever
they can off the truck they came in. And...GO! Fruit, cans, tools
and wood are dumped out the back and sides of the truck...and Michael
decides to sneak a few things away from Salani while the girls are
busy. When time expires, the girls look around for the pick-axe
they unloaded...and start yelling "cheat" at the men.
But, hey, Uncle Jeff TOLD the ladies to "watch their items"...so
it must've been legal.
OK, Uncle Jeff gives the
general low-down on this season. Hidden 3Is (Individual Immunity
Idols), yes. Redemption Island, no. You get voted out, we don't
see you until the reunion. Men and women get their maps to their
new homes and get sent out in opposite directions.
Oh, if they only knew...
AFTERNOON 1: WON'T YOU BE
MY NEIGHBOR? WELL, WILL OR NOT,...
The men had, by far, the
most stuff. And Tarzan regretted it about halfway through the LONG
trek to the site. Jonas is impressed by Leif carrying more than
the load he thought he could carry. Props to the little guy.
Ah, we finally arrive
at Manono Beach! Er,...but what are Salani doing there? And what's
that Salani FLAG doing next to the Manono flag?!
HOLY ARKHAM CITY, BATMAN!
THE TWO TRIBES ARE STAYING ON THE SAME BEACH!!!
Jonas hangs on to some
of the men's stuff just in case retribution is in order. While Colton
is happy to be buy the girls, Jonas doesn't think the "One
World" theme applies here.
Oh, hey, wild chickens.
Hey, come BACK, chickens! You're our protein for the next few days!
The tribes decide to work together and "split the chickens"
they catch. But the ladies (read: Chelsea, the "country girl")
grab TWO of the cluckers...and decide that splitting is NOT an option
and want to trade for it. Matt does NOT like that arrangement, knowing
it's bullypayback for Michael's robbing. So we say to heck with
the chicks... AND their poultry; let's build camp instead. The girls
will come to their senses when they realize they need us more they
we need them!
Both tribes get to building
shelter and everyone is busy. Well, everyone except Colton, who
is sitting and eyeing the girls...for a totally DIFFERENT reason.
Colton is DEFINITELY not "one of the guys" and gets in
friendly with Salani's members. Matt's comfy with Colton being "on
the other team"...but ISN'T comfy with the fact that Colton
refuses to "connect" with his own tribe! He clues Colton
in on this, wanting him to be a "runner" of info about
Speaking of Matt, he's
put together a "fraternity alliance" with Bill, Jay and
Mike. He figures that, since they're the strongest, they won't be
canned as per unwritten Survivor law. But Colton is already
sucking up to the girls, asking for clues to the 3I should they
get them. The girls like Colton...maybe TOO much to make him fully
Oh, right, we're not getting
flint for another few days so...gotta make fire the hard way for
now. The men seem to have it down pat, using bamboo to heat up coconut
shards enough to get them ablaze. The ladies...nasomuch. Sabrina
wants to trade fire for a chicken...but Matt brings up the original
deal. More girls show up and try to "steal" an ember...but
Leif blocks them from the flames. Then some jabs about trading a
pole dance for something unknown and the "Full Monty"
for a chicken...it's not impressing Troyzan much at ALL! He wants
them to suffer!
'CAUSE WHEN WE DIS, OOOO, IT'S LIKE FIRE!
Ah, here come the girls
again, now in their undergarments and bathing suits, claiming they
wanna talk with us. Yeah, right! Mike blocks them off and, after
Tarzan gives a yell that gives Carol Burnett a run for her money
(and Leif fails with his own version), tells them to head back to
their dark and cold camp. Jay collaborates this; "let them
struggle," he says.
DAY 2: TIME TO TRADE
Manono doesn't know that
Salani tried to steal an ember from our fire for their own...or
that they failed miserably to maintain it. But Salani is coming
over, ready to truly compromise. They bargain palm fronds for making
a fire and agree on twenty (not that Christina's making any friends
in her OWN tribe for that).
Colton's back with the
girls, helping with the fronds...and, again, begs for help looking
for a 3I. Hey, Sabrina, what's that you have there? *GASP* It's
a 3I! And a message comes attached:
This is the
Hidden Immunity Idol for the Manono Tribe. If you are a Manono
Tribe member, congratulations! You are now in possession of one of
the most powerful weapons of the game.
If you are not a
Manono Tribe member, you must give this to someone from the Manono
Tribe before the next Tribal Council.
Well, a little bit of
the puppy eyes gets Sabrina to cough it up. The only one not "one
of the guys" has leeway against them now!
DAY 3 - REWARD/IMMUNITY CHALLENGE:
the two tribes go together. Uncle Jeff explains the rather complicated
obstacle course in front of us. It's quite simple, really: jump
from a 25-foot tower into a giant net, race across a balance beam
and a rope bridge and then, when all nine of us are on the last
mat, raise the tribal flag. First to raise the flag wins the red
tiki One World Tribal Immunity Idol (which CANNOT be stolen, by
the way) AND gets flint to make fire a LITTLE easier. Losers leave
the dual camp tonight and go to Tribal Council...and will return
to said camp one member light. Oh...and make sure you fold your
arms over your chest and land on your back going into the net, OK?
"For Immunity and
Bill and Kat jump first,
Bill losing a shoe. Once the net is clear, Jonas and Sabrina jump...and
Uncle Jeff reminds us how to land properly to keep from hurting
ourselves. The men start building a lead as Troyzan lands well and
Nina face-plants. How many times does Jeff have to SAY it before
Not enough, it seems.
As Leif drops for Manono, Kourtney drops for Salani...and lands
on her hands. She holds on to her left wrist and groans as she goes
to the mat. The plummeting continues until all the men are on the
mat, allowing them to continue to the balance beam. By the time
the women are finished, one man is already across. Kourtney is slumped
on the balance beam platform, in pain. Finally, Uncle Jeff waves
his hands and tells them the Challenge is on hold for a minute while
they check Kourtney's wrist.
It's been a LONG time
since the Survivor Medical Team had to be called in. After some
initial testing (and a review of the tape), the obvious is confirmed:
Kourtney landed wrong, bent her hand the wrong way and may have
broken her wrist bones. Only an X-ray can tell for sure. So...her
status for this game is unknown for now. As they cart her off, Uncle
Jeff explains that, since the Challenge specifically calls for NINE
tribe members to finish in order to win, Salani cannot POSSIBLY
win. Ergo, MANONO WINS IMMUN...
Er,...wait a second. Uncle
Jeff asks Manono if they want to CONTINUE the Challenge "in
good faith". After all, we're only 1/13th of the way through
this game. As quoted by Mr. Alexander in his recap, "It is the single
biggest mistake of this game to make a decision early on that no
one will forgive you for in the end. But it is YOUR CALL." The men
huddle up and debate for a few minutes. Once the huddle breaks,
Colton announces their decision: "We're gonna take Immunity".
The girls argue, but Troyzan says that, were the roles reversed,
Salani would've done the same thing. They're done talking; they're
taking the win.
So,...as I was saying,
MANONO WINS IMMUNITY AND REWARD.
(Hollow victory, anyone?)
AFTERNOON 3: HINDSIGHT MAY
APPEAR CLOSER THAN IT IS
Was it chivalry? Was it
strategy? Was it confidence that they could beat the ladies anyway?
The world may never know why Manono took the Idol and ran. All we
know is that Kourtney is still with Medical and, as such, Salani
is already down by one. Doesn't stop the tribes from mingling and
discussing the events...nor does it stop Colton from telling Sabrina
that he's the odd "man" out in his tribe. Sabrina officially
hands the Manono 3I to Colton with SPECIFIC instructions to "knock
out one of the bug guys" with it should it come to that. Colton
says he'll cut Matt's throat "faster than Taylor Swift writes
a song about an ex-boyfriend." Not THAT'S nasty!
(Good news: Kourtney's
is in good spirits. BAD news:...well, see for yourself...)
TO FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENED TO SALANI AT
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