Exile Island Episode 11: Perilous Scramble

Previously, Bruce had to be taken off to the hospital and therefore he was the automatic person booted that day. He would be back to serve as a Jury member. Meanwhile, Shane was mad when Cirie won a Reward Challenge and took Danielle along with her and Aras, thinking that this was evidence that Cirie and Aras had abandoned their until-then unmentioned-on-this-show final three pact. He then made a final two pact with Courtney, although he later reestablished rapport with Aras and Cirie. Who knows what Shane is thinking anyway? Perhaps this episode will shed some illumination.

It's now day twenty-eight and Aras decides to head out to sea to get the tribe some fish. Terry is also doing the same thing, although they aren't working together as much as they are in some kind of competition. A competition that, judging from Terry's constant voting for Aras in Tribal Councils and his just as constant mentions of Aras as his biggest threat in previous episodes, is more intense on Terry's part. Terry is, after all, a pathetic loser so insecure that he overlooks the fact that he has the physical strength of a man in his prime in his desperation to get everyone to acknowledge that he is the best stud ever on this planet. Aras explains to the camera that food is running out for them all so he has to start figuring out how to catch some fish. That or they would start chewing on trees, which is something I'd love to see on my TV screen. On the other hand, Terry says to the camera that it is good that Bruce went away because that means that Terry could skip an Immunity Challenge that he is certain he would win. That's a nice thing to say indeed, I must say. Terry then talks about how he has a target on his back and how he has to swing some people to his side. He repeats the same old crap to the camera every time. Doesn't he get it? Nobody here wants to switch to his side because he proposes alliances that he doesn't even pretend will end up benefitting only himself. The LaDidas may be stupid to follow Terry to their metaphorical demise, but obviously the Cadavers can see right through him and his bloated sense of self-entitlement. Gosh, Terry, just shut up.

And now, more sideshow amusement courtesy of Shane. Shane has this piece of driftwood that he imagines is a Blackberry. Apparently he spends a lot of time in his thinking stump "talking", "emailing", "text messaging", and "browsing the Web" with that piece of wood. As he currently sits on his thinking stump and presses some imaginary keys on the "Blackberry", Cirie is like, oh no, that crazy man is at it again. Shane explains to the camera that conducting conversations on his "Blackberry" to his son and other people he knows in real life is what keeping him sane. Obviously, that's what he believes and just as obviously, that method isn't working. As Shane demonstrates how his "Blackberry" works, it's like watching some special kid showing off a painted rock that he believes is R2D2. I don't know whether to laugh or fidget uncomfortably in my seat and feeling some guilt in taking pleasure from watching an obviously addled twit making a scene of himself on TV. Danielle diplomatically says that she finds Shane's preoccupation with the "Blackberry" somewhat strange and concludes that Shane is crazy.

Quickly now, the show moves to the Reward Challenge. Jeff "Getting More Plastic Every Day" Proboscis and his shiny laminated dimples await the nitwits as they file in to the beach. This is another Challenge that is hard to explain without the aid of visuals but I'll try. Teams of three are tied to a rope that goes along an obstacle course. The team therefore have to make their way along the obstacle course until they reach a platform at the end, where they will then release themselves from the rope. Now, each person must then hop along floating lily pad thingies on the water until he or she sees a box in the water. This person then dives down and collects a bag from that box. There are three boxes, one for each person in the team. Once all three bags are retrieved, they will then reattach themselves to the rope (there are clips on the rope) for them to do this) and go back the way they came from in the same way as previously. The first team to return with all three bags win a trip to an island for some barbecue party.

Team one has Terry, Courtney, and Danielle. Team two has Aras, Shane, and Cirie. Okay, I'm sure you know which team wins by now. Yup, soon enough Aras and Shane are dragging Cirie up and down, above and under all kinds of obstacles that poor Cirie actually pops out of her swimsuit in a jumble of pixels. She will always have a place in this show as that big lady squealing and grunting like a terrified pig as two men try valiantly to untangle her as well as themselves from the obstacles. Needless to say, Terry, Courtney, and Danielle are on their way to a personal barbecue, where no doubt Courtney and Danielle will spend the entire day listening to Terry bragging about himself. Also, the winning team can send someone to Janu Island, and once more Terry sends Aras (Courtney and Danielle keep quiet because... well, there's no point arguing as it serves no purpose and I suspect that Danielle is personally enjoying the fact that Aras is on his second consecutive exile to Janu Island - take that, Mr It's For Your Own Good!). Terry has such a competitive hard-on for Aras, it's actually quite funny considering how Aras hasn't come close to beating Terry in many Immunity Challenges. Aras has the social game down pat though compared to Terry, but Terry has an advantage in the fact that the current composition of the Jury (Bruce, Sally, and Austin) are on his side. Future Jury members (read: bitter Cadavers) will most likely support Terry out of spite as well.

Since a Terry win seems inevitable, why not give him the stupid car thingie as well, right? Okay, so here goes, as Probby announces another challenge: the winning team members will now compete in a slingshot match to win a GMC Yukon. A shooting competition. Between Terry the ex-armed forces guy and two women who couldn't have had much practice in target-practice other than being at the receiving end. I'm sure you can guess the outcome. I have this feeling that if Terry doesn't win, Burnetto will hold a special America's Tribal Council II to give that useless sod the money. How this show has mutated from one celebrating strategy and intrigue to one pandering to thoughtless middle-class losers/armed forces "let's celebrate losers like Hagrid, Twila, and Terry" propaganda, I will never know. At least Tom the Mighty wasn't a blithering idiot like Terry and therefore the whole "heroic fireman" nonsense his win brought forth in the media was still palatable. Tom, after all, deserves his million dollars. Terry, on the other hand, is just vile.

So, Terry gets the GMC Yukon. That means he won't win the money. Right? Right?

Day twenty-nine now. Aras is on Janu Island, doing yoga. With his clothes on, unfortunately. He's not wasting his time looking for Wally because he's sure Terry has it. He claims that his exile is "unnecessary in terms of the positives", which I'm sure is Aras' yoga-speak for how much this latest exile to Janu Island stinks for him.

Elsewhere, on another island, Terry, Courtney, and Danielle get down from their plane to enjoy their barbecue reward. Look, there's the GMC Yukon as well. Terry brags about how "righteous" his GMC is and how his wife told him before he came here that he has to win the car. See? Terry makes women happy. He wants everyone to know that. The two women gush about how happy they are as they enjoy the barbecue. As Danielle plays with a ball on the beach, Terry tells Courtney that he'd like her and Danielle to be with him in the Final Three. So would I, if I'm Terry. Those two women would probably be easier to beat compared to, say, Aras or Cirie. Terry takes the opportunity to tell the camera that he will now "forge a relationship with the women". Man, the way he says that - everything comes out so wrong. Courtney is agreeable to Terry's plan. She suggests that they take out Aras first, then Shane, and Cirie would most likely lose the Immunity Challenge and be taken out easily in the Final Four. To the camera, Courtney says that she has been thinking of allying with Terry for a while now because she may actually win if she stands against Terry in the Final Two. Aww, and here Terry must be thinking that she's just impressed with his way with words!

When those two approach Danielle with the final three offer, Danielle tells the camera with a hint of amusement that she can guess why Terry would want to compete against three women in the Final Four. However, while she isn't against the idea of an alliance with Terry and Courtney, she isn't going to go blindly into it. As she puts it, she's not going to bend down and let Terry take advantage of her to win the million dollars. Whether she can stand up against Terry, however, is a different matter altogether.

Back at camp, Shane offers Cirie a proposal: he, Courtney, and Cirie for final three. He tells her that the two of them can beat Courtney easily in the Final Two. He also wants to boot Danielle in the next Immunity Challenge should Terry once again wins the Dunce Necklace. Cirie, however, moves down a different path in her thoughts: she tells the camera that she now feels that Courtney is more dangerous to Cirie compared to anyone else because people would want to take Courtney to the Final Two. She thinks that Courtney has to be gotten rid off ASAP. I'm not entirely sure of her logic, but Courtney being booted will free up a spot in the final three pacts of Shane and Terry that she could exploit to her advantage so that's still fine, I think.

Meanwhile, the camera gives a close-up of snails escaping the pot that is meant to boil them into stew. Gosh, that makes me feel that this tribe of nitwits are even more pathetic than ever. Still, good for the snails! Cirie has had it with snails so she decides to try her hand at fishing. She grabs the fishing line and tells an unconvinced Shane that she would be back with fish for them. Cirie tells the camera that she had fished when she was a child. How hard can fishing be? Well, for one she is truly squeamish when it comes to smashing a snail with a rock to pulverize it into fish bait. She apologizes and shrieks with each hammering of the rock on the poor snail, which I must shamefully confess is pure comedy gold. She then offers the snail to the fish and next thing I know, she manages to reel in a fish. After briefly screaming out her confusion as to whether she has caught a puffer fish (oh, please) Cirie is nearly delirious in joy in her (very loud) excitement. She then unceremoniously pulls up the fish from the water and smacks it against a rock before dragging it in the ground behind her as she runs back to camp to tell Shane the happy news. No, she never did apologize to the fish, heh.

The fish is big, which is another plus for Cirie as she bursts into the scene back at camp singing "Happy Birthday" to a stunned Shane. Cirie tells the camera that she is too thrilled and excited, which is really nice and worth a few "You go, girl!" from me, if I may say so. Shane and Cirie share a hug as he compliments her. To the camera, Shane says in mock surprise, "Cirie Fields caught the biggest fish out here. The girl from Jersey!" He also can't resist a dig at Terry as he adds, "Captain America has been swimming around for three weeks and... nothing. How great is that?" Spectacularly great, Shane. Just spectacular.

Cirie is also waiting to show off her fish to Danielle, Courtney, and Terry when they return from their barbecue trip. When they do, Danielle is gracious about complimenting Cirie to the camera.

Day thirty now, morning. Danielle and Terry sort snails on the beach. Hmm, either these people are back to eating snail stew or an early fishing trip hasn't been a success. Danielle takes this opportunity to ask Terry what will happen when it's just them and Courtney in the Final Three. More to the point, she asks him point-blank next whether he will take Courtney with him to the Final Two. Of course Terry will, duh. Terry tries to pretend that he isn't clear about what Danielle is asking him about but Danielle isn't that stupid. I have a hunch that when it comes to dealing with people of the opposite sex, Danielle is more adept at reading people than Terry. She tells him that she knows he will take Courtney to the Final Two. Terry now lies that he hasn't really thought about this matter. Terry, by the way, is a really bad liar. He's the kind of person that you can immediately tell is lying through his teeth just by watching his collective body language. Of course, he confirms that he is lying to Danielle when he tells the camera that he wants to take Courtney to the Final Two and he is sure that Danielle will too in the same situation.

Danielle tells Terry that she is not okay with coming in third. "Don't take someone because people think she's annoying!" she tells Terry. I don't know what she wants Terry to say since it is quite ridiculous to assume that Terry will take someone to the Final Two because that person is, uh, cute or whatever Danielle fancies herself as, but it is awesome to see her make Terry squirm like that. Terry finally tries to wiggle out of the hotseat by saying that he and Danielle should agree that the winner of the final Immunity Challenge should take the runner-up to the Final Two. Danielle seems placated by that suggestion, saying that the idea seems fair enough. Terry encourages her with a condescending "Fight it out like brothers and sisters!" Now he tells the camera that he wants everything to be fair and all, which contradicts his previous confessional. But hey, this is Terry who is all crap and brawn with nothing upstairs. What more can I expect from him?

Danielle now approaches Courtney in their shelter about Terry's "fair deal", saying that she likes the idea because this means she's not going to have to settle for third place. Courtney reads the lines between Danielle's babblings and immediately realizes that she must be Terry's Final Two choice over Danielle and somehow Danielle must have figured that out. Courtney is not pleased because it doesn't take a genius to know that she's the preferred Final Two choice as she's considered annoying by most people in the tribe. Danielle inadvertently makes Courtney even more annoyed when she tells Courtney that the plan is fair because, as she puts it, nobody will be getting "any free rides" to the Final Two. Courtney must be feeling most insulted that she's getting a free ride on the account of the fact that the members of the Jury can't stand her so she gets very defensive with Danielle. "If any of us would make it anywhere, it's because we earned it!" Courtney snaps at Danielle before walking away.

Cirie has overheard Courtney's parting shot since she's nearby when Courtney was walking away. She asks Danielle what Courtney was talking about and Danielle, being who she is, cheerfully tells Cirie about Terry's magnificent and fair (don't forget fair) idea. Cirie immediately understands that in Terry's grand plan, Cirie is going to end up in fourth place. She also notices things that Danielle fails to grasp and tells Danielle of them. Such as, of course, the fact that Danielle will most likely lose to Courtney in the Final Immunity Challenge so Terry will take Courtney to the Final Two, fair deal or no. The look on Danielle's face is most comical as Cirie tells Danielle that it is ridiculous for them to end up fighting for a chance to be picked by Terry. Aww, but I'm sure Terry just has the balance of the world in mind and not his ego when he proposed that fair deal! Cirie also says that what she and Danielle have to do is to get rid of Courtney so that they can free up a spot for themselves in the Final Three. Aha, so I do get a grasp of Cirie's logic after all! Cirie also cautions Danielle about not telling Terry anything: they'll just say they're voting for Aras and surprise Courtney at the Tribal Council instead. As Cirie leaves Danielle to think about what she has said, Cirie gloats about how she has set in motion events that would lead to Courtney's departure. Ooh, I'm liking her a lot already.

Immunity Challenge time. It's carrying weights equivalent to your body mass (with another weight equivalent to 10% of the person's body mass added every fifteen minutes) while kneeling on a plank. And Terry of course wins, case closed. Can we move on now? Courtney puts up a good fight but in the end Terry triumphs.

Back at camp, Terry brags to the camera that winning is "awesome" but not as awesome as Aras being on the block. Meanwhile, Courtney is selling Cirie a Final Four alliance that she and Terry agreed on in the previous day, saying that Aras must go because Aras cannot be beaten in the Final Two. I'm sure Cirie can beat Aras in the Final Two, but I'll just have to wait and see. Courtney knows that Shane and Danielle will be out of the loop and when Aras leaves, Shane will go crazy. She tells the camera that she'll just have to deal with Shane when that happens. Still bristling over Danielle's comments about someone (ahem) getting free rides, Courtney now whistles to Terry to come over to her. When he does, she tells him that she put up a good fight for the Dunce Necklace and Terry condescendingly tells her that she "kicked" his ass. She didn't. He knows that. She knows that. But Terry being Terry, he's just insufferably condescending that way. To the camera, Terry says that he is confident that Aras is gone by the next Tribal Council. Gone! Terry will no longer have to compete with a handsome younger man for the ladies' attention in this tribe! Who's the man, people? Who's the man, huh? Huh?

Cirie now approaches Shane. Aras is nearby, within listening range. Shane wants to know why Courtney approached Cirie earlier and Cirie tells him that Courtney merely wanted confirmation that Cirie would be going along with a Danielle boot. Shane, acting like a strict schoolteacher interrogating two naughty schoolgirls, now asks Courtney whether everything is okay with her. Courtney just has to say that "nothing's okay" because it's all about her, but she also tells Shane that the plan to boot Danielle is still on. Cirie reminds the audience in her confessional that both Shane and Terry want Courtney to be with them in the Final Two, so Courtney must go to give Cirie, Danielle, and Aras some "leverage" in this game.

To do this, Cirie rounds up Aras and Danielle and explain to them what Terry and Shane plan to do with Courtney. She also tells them that the only way they can protect their own interests in this game is to boot Courtney stealthily while letting Shane believe that Danielle will go and Courtney and Terry that Aras will go. It's now up to Danielle to decide what she wants to do. It must be terrifying to know that one's fate lies in the hands of the nitwit bimbo, so Cirie hopes to the camera that Danielle will manage to stay calm and follow through with the plan to boot Courtney.

Night, Tribal Council. Sally makes her debut in the Jury seat and for the occasion, she has put on enough make-up to make her come off like someone from The Bachelor who has boarded the wrong plane and ended up on the wrong show. Bruce also shows up, looking so much happier and even younger that I feel like applauding him myself with the other nitwits. The moral here seems to be that this game is evil and can destroy your health, hmm.

Conversations revolve around bondings, with Terry saying that he bonded with Courtney and Danielle without trying to reveal too much (which, for Terry, means that he ended up revealing what he is trying to keep concealed anyway). Cirie however believes that bonding is part of the game and you can't just stop thinking of the game to bond with people contrary to what Terry is lying very ineptly about. Aras is concerned that since this is the first time that the Cadavers have to boot one of their own, he will be that person booted. But he believes that he's the best person to beat Terry in a Challenge, a rationale that only works if the others are petty enough to be willing to see Aras win the money just to thwart Terry. I can believe that, since I can be petty like that myself, especially to someone like Terry, heh. Courtney pretends that she doesn't allow the whole she-is-most-annoying thingie get to her, when of course it's obvious to all that she will be a Terry vote because she now hates the entire Cadavers for calling her an annoying, free-riding, and easily intimidated blabbermouth.

Probby sends the nitwits to vote. Cirie votes for Courtney, of course, calling it a strategic vote. Terry commends Aras for being a worthy rival as he casts his vote for Aras. Aras votes. Shane votes for Danielle, saying, "You get to eat as much as you want and I will never yell at you again." Yup, he's definitely demented. Courtney votes for her "brother" Aras. Finally, Danielle votes.

Probby now reads out the vote. Aras. Danielle. Aras. Here, Shane looks puzzled because there shouldn't be a second Aras vote. Then, Courtney. Courtney. And... Courtney! Shane looks like the ground has just opened up under him. That man is shocked. Terry on the other hand looks merely disappointed. By now, he should be used to that feeling. If he wins the money, he'll be the first winner to have never been in the loop when it comes to voting off anyone to the Jury and to have never been in a successful alliance. Terry winning will be akin to the saying that if we wait long enough, sure enough somehow and someday a brainless monkey will manage to win Survivor.

Meanwhile, Courtney merely gives her tribemates a look full of self-righteous fury before walking off to Loser Lodge. I have a sinking feeling that she'll make Cirie, Aras, and Danielle pay, pay, pay at the end by making Terry a millionaire. I am really starting to dread watching the finale.