Exile Island Episode 3: Crazy Fights, Snake Dinners

Previously, the four-tribe twist was thrown to the winds when the tribes merged into two. Bruce was not chosen to be in any tribe so he was exiled to Janu Island until he would take the place of the person booted at Tribal Council. Aras, Shane, Danielle, and Courtney got into an alliance in Camp Cadaver, putting Melinda, Bobby, and Cirie on the outside. When Cadaver lost in an Immunity Challenge involving a zombie head (no kidding), Shane wanted to quit but later decided that he was just momentarily crazy. So it was Melinda who was booted and Bruce came in to take her place. With that, a new episode of Tiki-Tack Survivor has started!

Night, day six, Camp Cadaver. The Cadavers are just returning from their recent Tribal Council and they are also getting to know Bruce a little more at the same time. As Bobby tells the camera, Bruce was "inserted" into the Cadavers when Melinda left. He makes it sound as if Bruce was the result of some botched surgical procedure. Bruce asks where the watering hole is and someone - I think it's Courtney, I'm not sure - asks him whether he can make fire. It looks like Bruce is already well on his way to being one of the tribe - the Cinderella to the stepsisters. Bruce tells this person that they don't need fire, they need water. He explains to the camera that he can see that his new tribemates are suffering from dehydration so luckily for them, he has the knowledge and the skills to banish those dehydration blues away. He also believes that his tribemates have heart so there's always a question of him not being completely sensible. Just because he does that martial arts thing doesn't mean that he's a top guru material, after all. Bruce however brags to the others that they have gotten the "most important person of everybody" because he has taught wilderness survival skills for thirty years. Wait a minute, I thought he is an art teacher? Maybe wilderness survival is an artform too. Bruce also reminds Shane that he took care of Shane's back back at the original LaDida and Shane just grunts in a form of non-response.

Bruce's first important lesson to his tribemates is the use of six or so shirts layered together to form a makeshift filter. He claims that this will create purer and therefore safer drinking water that is about "90% pure". The others scoff but you know, what Bruce says is quite correct, although merely using his idea of filter won't work that well. Still, it works, especially when we are using shirts of different kind of fabrics to do the filtering. Of course, the fabrics should be preferably clean in the first place, but I guess out there in the Burnetto-owned slice of Panama, Bruce has to make do with what he has at hand. Shane complains to the camera that Bruce is "incredibly neurotic". Yup, Shane has no self-awareness at all. Shane says that Bruce is constantly bringing up how much he knows about outdoor survival and therefore keeps telling everybody what to do. Predictably, Shane says that Bruce is getting on his nerves. I've a hunch that Bruce is in good company when it comes to things and people that get on Shane's nerves. In fact, if Bruce succeeds in getting Shane's head to explode, I have a hunch that some folks may even give him a medal.

Aras, cute but oh so bland, tells the camera that the Cadavers just go about with Bruce's instructions when they have no idea what to think of that man's methods. Just like how the tribe went along with his yoga motivational seminars, perhaps? Courtney says that she has spent some time living outdoor as well - maybe she's a fire dancer in the sense that she creates big bonfires in the middle of the wilderness and dances around it - and she has no idea that Bruce's filtration method works in removing all bacteria from drinking water. Bruce corrects her by saying that only most germs will be removed by that method. Bobby has a more affable attitude: he tells the camera that Bruce drinks the water that he has filtered so he believes in that method, and since Bruce doesn't keel over and die, Bobby thinks that Bruce may be right after all. I mean, that makes sense, doesn't it, that somehow even a little filtered water can be more dangerous than unfiltered water? Unless, of course, the Cadavers know something that Bruce and I don't, like perhaps their shirts are all covered with dangerous radioactive body scum. Bruce, happy and probably way too cocksure about his position in his newfound tribe, tells the camera that the Cadavers think that he's a gift from heaven. And he knows martial arts too, how nice. Still, the Cadavers drink their nicely-filtered 90% bacteria-free water and enjoy what quiet time they have for the rest of the night.

Hello, Camp LaDida! It's morning, day seven. Ruth Marie spends the morning crushing helpless snails with a rock. She boils these snails in water. As she explains to the camera, the LaDidas have been making do with snail soup (sometimes with some crab legs, sometimes not) for a long time now. Sally and Misty taste the soup and they certainly don't enjoy the taste of it. Yes, Misty's skin is pretty bad but I wish I look as good as her when I'm starving, dirty, and sore all over. Nick makes me a happy man by walking around shirtless, although I have a hunch that as his physique continues to waste away, those humongous nipples of his will be a scary sight to behold. He tells the camera as he, Austin, and Terry attempt to use their fishing gear that they had won in the previous episode that they don't really know how to use the gear since everything is "old-school" and "medieval". They end up resorting to using lines and hooks. Nick nearly catches a fish but it manages to escape in time. Poor Nick bites back a stream of curses while Austin watches with amusement. Nick talks to the camera about how a fish or two could have made a difference and Austin wishes that they still have the spear with him. "How did she lose the spear?" asks Austin about Sally with an exasperated sigh to the camera. Watching these guys, I wish Bobby Jon is around to teach them how to catch fish using an open wound. Now that is what I call creative outdoor survival skill and I'm sure Bruce will back me up on this.

It turns out that they do catch some fish - puffer fish which are dangerous unless one of the LaDidas happens to be a chef trained in some Japanese culinary schools on the fine art of removing all the poisonous parts of a pufferfish before cooking it. Nick says that it is becoming "old" to waste precious time at sea - time that could be used working around the camp - only to come back with no fish for everyone. You know, people keep saying that Terry is the Tom the Mighty of this tribe but I can't help thinking that Nick is that person instead of Terry. Terry has the physical chops, yes, but so does Nick, and also, as of now Nick seems to have an Ian in Austin. I'll just have to wait and see, I suppose. Terry manages to catch a small fish that can be cooked and eaten and there is much celebration around the camp. Austin the cheeky scamp tells the camera that Terry has caught a fish that is small enough to be called Nemo but that fish may as well be a "fourteen-pound catfish" where the thrilled LaDidas are concerned. How sad that Nemo used to be associated with the quiet, dangerous, and mysterious captain of a majestic submarine until that stupid cartoon comes out and now everyone sees Nemo as a puny bratty fish with stereotypical teenaged angsts. What happened to culture? Anyway, the LaDidas have a nice meal out of that fish which may be small but at the same time surprisingly enough to go around for everybody. Sally says loudly that it will be great if they can have a few fish to eat every day. She's lucky that the others don't get up and shove fish bones up her nostrils while shrieking, "It will be even better, missy, if we have the freaking spear with us!" because I would probably do just that if I'm in their shoes.

It's now time for the Reward Challenge as Probby waits for the tribes to file in and stand before him. If he wore those stupid hats in Guatemala, why can't he wearing a shaman wig for this season? Probby tells the uncaring LaDidas that Melinda has been booted and points out that the LaDidas look to be in high spirits that day. Danielle and Bobby say that Bruce has been a valuable help around camp. With less bacteria swarming in their systems, of course these people are happier, duh. Wanna see them do the happy dance? Anyway, Probby cuts short the chit-chat and gets down to explaining the Challenge. Simply put, four people from each tribe ("catchers") will stand on a narrow beam out there in the water while the remaining three people ("launchers") will remain on the beach and one by one use a harpoon-like sling device to shoot a plastic ball to the people on the beam. If the people on the beam catch the ball - they can do this in any way they want, even jumping off the beam to catch the ball before it hits the water - one point will be given to the tribe. The first tribe to score five points will win everything they need to make their life comfortable - tarps, lanterns, ropes, and even jelly cans to carry water. Of course, a tribe can win all these and still whine that they are hungry, cold, and miserable if past seasons have taught me anything.

Ruth Marie, Dan, and Misty will act as launchers for LaDida while Cirie, Bobby, and Bruce will be the Cadaver launchers. First ones are Bobby and Misty. Terry catches Misty's ball nicely while Aras dives into the water to catch Bobby's shot and misses instead, awww. Aras manages to catch Bobby's next shot. Terry falls into the water, missing Misty's shot, but the ball ends up flying straight into Nick's hands. Bruce takes over at the slingshot thingie from Bobby and uses his zen-like telepathic powers to send the ball straight into Danielle's hands. Maybe he's just focusing on Danielle's chest instead, hmm. Dan takes over from Misty at the LaDida slingshot thingie and because he is Terry's biggest fanboy, sends a shot straight to Terry with all the power of a rocket man. Shane catches Bruce's next shot while Dan's misses completely. At this point, both tribes are tied with three points each. Ruth Marie and Cirie now take over the slingshot thingies. Ruth Marie's first shot goes astray. Cirie, with some words of wisdom from Bruce guiding her, imagines that Shane is a leaf monster from hell and fires one at Shane. Shane catches the ball and now the Cadavers are leading by a point. Terry however catches Ruth Marie's next shot while Aras completely misses Cirie's. The score is now four-four. Misty and Bobby take over at the slingshot thingies. Bobby's shot goes astray and Shane tries to catch the ball but fails, however, while Terry succeeds in catching Misty's. Therefore LaDida wins the camping goodies!

Probby also allows them to choose one person from Cadaver to be banished to Janu Island. The LaDidas group huddle and discuss this. Austin points out that the Cadavers talked just now about how important Bruce is to them so Bruce should be sent to Janu Island. The others agree on this although Dan looks visibly unhappy at the idea of his buddy being sent to that island again. So Bruce it is who will be gracing Janu Island again until he rejoins his tribe for the Immunity Challenge. Shane acts like the LaDidas are doing a really dastardly thing indeed, saying aloud, "These guys are playing for keeps, huh?" Expect the Cadavers to start gushing about how Cirie teaches them to raindance and sing to the fish at the next Reward Challenge. Bruce heads off in a boat to Janu Island, the LaDidas happily grab their loot and head back to their camp, and the disappointed Cadavers also go their own way.

The happy LaDidas start making use of their tarp to cover their shelter and the ropes to strengthen the shelter. A happy Terry gushes to the camera about how happy he is for his "team". Later that day, a storm hits them but they manage to remain dry thanks to their newly-improved shelter. Someone - Dan? - brings up Dan and how they should all spare a thought for him. I'm sure some, like Misty and Courtney, are thinking, "Huh?" They all say that Bruce can't be too happy to spend a second time at Janu Island. Terry tells the camera that it's not pleasant to send Bruce back there but he has to do what he has to do for his "team" and he won't want to be Bruce at that moment. Bruce no doubt doesn't want to be Bruce either as later that night he huddles and shivers from the cold and the rain. He says that he has barely spent 24 hours with his tribe before he is back at Janu Island. He's spent more time here than he's with a particular tribe, he says with some mild amusement. He adds that with the storm hitting Janu Island, he doesn't have time to hunt for Wally.

Morning, day eight. Courtney makes fire and boils water. While she's doing that, she announces that it was most evil of the LaDidas to send Bruce away like that to Janu Island. I'd love to hear who she'd like to see sent instead to Janu Island. Shane, perhaps? Shane is getting on her nerves. At that moment, Shane sits on a tree stump a distance away from Cirie, Courtney, and Danielle around the fire. Shane announces that this tree stump is his "thinking seat". He only thinks when he's sitting on that tree stump, I suppose. I've never seen before a guy who has to resort to stumps to get his brain working. Courtney says that the stump is actually Shane's "time-out stump". Shane then starts saying that no one should sit on Shane's Thinking Seat, maybe because he's worried that someone may end up being as smart as he is, and the others chuckle, thinking that he's joking. Courtney therefore responds by asking why no one can sit on that stump. Shane then explodes, ranting and foaming about how he just wants a stump of his own and if they want his stump, he'll go get another one. And just as suddenly as his outburst erupts, he suddenly calms down, leaving the others looking stunned as if they don't know what has just hit them. Aras tells the camera that he is an alliance with "three nutballs". Shouldn't that mean that he is in great company?

Courtney and Danielle seem to have a problem about balancing the pot over the fire and when Shane walks by, Courtney asks Shane what he thinks they can do about the pot. Shane says that Courtney created the problem so she should be the one solving it, not him. He then waddles away looking like he has something shoved up his butt while Courtney looks at Danielle and pinches her lips. Cirie tells the camera that it is hilarious when these people quickly get into an alliance with each other only to realize too late that they can't stand each other. She thinks that these people are stupid. Of course, while I agree with her, she's the one to talk, seeing how she has no allies in the power faction to speak of. Courtney and Shane argue again later, leaving Shane to sulk in the shelter. He tells the camera that he can't stand Courtney but he has to stick with her since he has staked his son's life on the alliance. Ooh, that's so sad! He is now being a martyr on top of a thinker! Where're my smelly salts? Courtney on her part tells Danielle that she does not appreciate being Shane's punching bag for whatever it is that gets him riled up.

Over at LaDida, Misty and Sally are trying to pull a Jabba and High D but somehow they aren't getting the formula right. The two ladies try hard to persuade Austin to bring in Nick and form some cozy alliance of four. Misty explains that this is necessary to stave off the inevitable "boys' club" thing that always result in the women being picked off one by one. That's a valid concern so Misty sets about getting Nick and Austin into the fold by giving them back and neck rubs. She tells Nick that her skills come naturally to her. However, maybe she should be a less subtle about the Mata Hari thing because her facial expression suggests that she's not as keen on massaging those men's admitted nicely-form bodies as her tone suggests. Sally tells the camera that Misty is a smart lady and Sally is content to play the nice best buddy to Misty as they both try to look out for each other in the tribe. Of course, Terry and Dan look at Misty in suspicion. Maybe they're wondering why they aren't getting any backrubs from Misty. Misty and Sally have a talk where they both agree that they can lay low and avoid being targetted should they succeed in making the merge because they aren't great physical threats. Austin tells the camera that he's in a difficult spot because he's the nice guy that everyone in the tribe confides to, therefore he's caught between the Misty/Sally and Terry/Dan factions. He's not sure whether it's wise to align with the guys. Sally sort of answers Austin's doubts in her confessional when she says that Austin should fare better with Misty and Sally since he's bound to butt heads with Terry if he aligns with the two old coots. That makes sense, but sensibility isn't always abundant in this show.

Ooh, it's now time for the greatest Immunity Challenge ever. Maybe Burnetto should consider doing a brawling match for any alumni of his shows that want to extend their fifteen minutes of fame. In this Challenge, Probby welcomes the two tribes to a beach where he explains the rules. It's very simple: in a circular sand pit there is a bag buried somewhere beneath the sand. Whoever finds the bag and touches the finish line scores a point for the tribe. The thing is, a few members from each tribe will be scrabbling at the same sand pit for the bag each time and they are allowed to tackle, wrestle, snatch, and shove the others all to get the bag to the finish line. Super awesome, man!

The first round sees Cirie and Danielle versus Sally and Misty. As the four women enter the sandpit, Danielle succeeds in grappling Misty and holding her so that only Sally and Cirie are free to dig. Sally and Cirie start shoving at each other. Bruce, who has rejoined Cadaver, uses his awesome martial art skills to detect the enemy's weak point and shouts to Cirie to do the obvious: sit on Sally. Meanwhile Danielle starts to dig for the bag but Misty grabs her from behind. Danielle manages to grab the bag and Cirie now gets off Sally to grab Misty off Danielle. Misty cries that Cirie is choking her and Probby announces that choking opponents is not allowed on this show. Bummer. Cirie and Misty end up fighting for the bag while Sally and Danielle grapple and roll on the ground while the men cheer. Danielle tries to run after shaking off Sally but Sally grabs Danielle's leg and won't let go. Down goes Danielle. Misty pounces on Danielle but watch out, here comes Cirie! This has to be seen to be fully appreciated, folks, but it's awesome and hilarious all at once as the four women fight and fight until Cirie realizes that all she has to do is to make sure that she is holding the bag when she touches the finish line with her other hand. When she is close enough to the line, with one hand on the bag, she touches her other hand to the line on the sand. The Cadavers have scored one point!

Nick and Terry versus Bruce and Bobby. Bummer, I'm hoping to see Aras and Nick writhe and wrestle on the sand! From the get go, Bruce jumps to tackle both Nick and Terry only to comically land face-first on the sand as he falls way short of his targets. Go, kung fu man, go! The four men reach the sand pit and what happens is a huge tangle of homoerotic manmeat barbecue bar, so to speak, with Bruce and Nick trying to form a pretzel-like pose by entangling their legs and hands as much as possible while Bobby ends up with Terry's bum planted right against his face. I need a cold drink, people. Bruce grabs Nick and clings on to the man's back while Nick crawls along the sand. As Bobby and Terry continue to fight, Nick manages to dig up the bag. With a mighty shove, he throws Bruce off his back and runs unimpeded to the finish line. Score one for LaDida.

Shane, Courtney, and Aras versus Dan, Austin, and Ruth Marie. From the get go, Dan and Shane throw themselves at each other while Aras and Austin bump chests and wrestle each other. Hot! Aras manages to slither away from Austin once he has the bag in his hand and passes the bag to Shane. Austin then ignores Aras and now tackles Shane instead. Down Shane goes, ouch. Ruth Marie and Courtney grapple, Dan takes on Aras, therefore Shane has nowhere to turn to for help as Austin keeps coming at him, woo-hoo. Austin takes down Shane and then does this really sexy maneuvre where he holds on to Shane and roll them both along the sand until he's close enough to grab the bag and touch the finish line, giving LaDida another point.

Courtney, Cirie, and Aras versus Nick, Sally, and Misty. Now they all decide to work a little differently, with Sally and Aras both keep watch while their tribemates dig. Cirie then announces that she has found the bag and wham, Sally throws herself at Cirie and pulls her down to the ground with her. Nick manages to grab the bag from Cirie and Courtney tries to take it back from him. Where she can't match him in brute strength, she decides to kick some sand at his face. Aras throws himself at Nick too to seize the bag while Misty decides to tackle Aras. She grabs him and actually succeeds in pulling him off the Nick and Courtney pile. Cirie decides to come to Aras' aid and all six of them end up piled on each other with poor Nick eating sand at the bottom. This is too fun to watch! Aras then starts squealing that Misty is choking her while Nick squeals that he's getting sand in his mouth. Bruce from the sidelines shouts to Cirie to push Misty off Aras. Cirie shoves Misty and she pretty much flies off Aras. Sally and Nick have the bag wedged between their arms and legs and Aras ends up tickling Sally's feet, causing her to let go of the bag, before he grabs the bag and runs to the finish line with it. Another point for Cadaver.

The last round now. Bobby and Danielle versus Ruth Marie and Terry. Ruth Marie immediately jumps on Danielle while Bobby and Terry duke it out on the sand until Bobby ends up finding the bag first. Terry snatches the bag from him, however, and runs a few steps before Bobby tackles him down. Terry throws the bag to Ruth Marie who tries to make a run for it. She runs like she's wearing heels, which doesn't help her one bit. She even slows down to look over her shoulder when she should be running as fast as she can. She sees Bobby running towards her and tries to run but it's too late. She's just inches away from the finish line when Bobby grabs her loose top and pulls her back and down to the ground, where he actually drags her like she's a sack of potatoes until he reaches his finish line. The Cadavers have won the Skull Stick!

Later, the LaDidas at camp are understandably miserable. Sally says that they are taking their loss pretty badly because they put so much into a very physical Challenge only to loss. She also doesn't think that it's fair that some people over at Camp Cadaver (read: Cirie) weigh more than the folks at Camp LaDida. Terry says that his hope is to make the merge with the entire Camp LaDida intact - bwahahaha... wait, he's serious? - but now they have to vote off someone, awww. Terry is pragmatic though. "But the game moves on and there's always tomorrow," he tells the camera. People always say this kind of things when they are not on the chopping block. Dan, Terry, and Austin discuss later on who to evict and Austin, on his own accord, deflects the blame on Ruth Marie by saying that it is Misty who caused them to lose the Challenge. Huh? The only reason I can think of to explain Austin's action is that he is probably allied to Ruth Marie. (Of course, later on if you watch the Insider videos at the official website, you will learn like I do that sneaky Ruth Marie has gotten herself an alliance with Terry and Dan while Misty and Sally are thinking that she's just sitting out there catching flies or something.) Terry tells the camera that Misty is getting booted tonight because she's smart (being a missile engineer and all that) and therefore she's a threat. I love it when a man feels so threatened by an intelligent woman that he'd want to see her be rid off quickly. "Ohmigosh, it's a smart woman! Kill it! Kill it!"

Sally and Misty try to persuade Nick to boot either Ruth Marie or Dan. Nick says that he will never vote for Dan, which is fine with Sally since she's angling towards a Ruth Marie boot anyway. Nick thinks that he can vote for Ruth Marie, no problem. Sally tells the camera that Ruth Marie is weak and she hasn't been well in the last few days, so Sally feels that it's best for all of them that Ruth Marie leaves the tribe. Austin and Nick also have a talk among themselves later about who to vote. The show doesn't show much of that conversation so I'm not sure what the two guys really talk about. Austin once more tells the camera about how he is stuck between two factions, yadda yadda yadda, but unlike contestants in the past that crowed about how great it is to be an all-powerful swing vote, he is worried that a wrong decision could endanger his entire game.

Night, Tribal Council. Probby is confronted with a determinedly happy tribe that insists on not blaming anyone for anything. Instead, they love each other so much that they will start picking china patterns for each other by the end of the month. They are all a team, Mr Probby, and they have to vote someone out because awww, it's only because they have to. Nick even says that he's voting the way he is voting because the majority of the tribe is doing just that. Okay. Probby, bored with these sunshine-radiating people, send them to the voting booth. Misty is shown voting for Ruth Marie (for the sake of the tribe) and Terry for Misty (because she's a smart woman) while Nick's vote isn't shown but he is however shown saying that his vote is for the weakest member of the tribe. When Probby tallies and shows the votes, Misty learns that her back-rubs don't work because the men are not going to think with their pee-pees like she is hoping: she's the one with the most votes tonight. Probby asks her whether she has Wally and she says in a dazed manner that she hasn't. Misty clearly doesn't see her boot coming, heh. She gets her torch snuffed and leaves an unhappy Sally behind as she makes her way to Loser Lodge. Probby turns to the remaining LaDidas and says something about a tribe united will still have some people on the outside of the majority alliance. Tell me something I don't know, Probby, sheesh.

Misty's final words have her saying that she really doesn't see her boot coming. Still, she has had a great time and she wishes LaDida to go all the way to the end. I'm quite disappointed to see her leave just when I'm starting to see that she will try to scheme her way to the top, which would no doubt be more interesting than the self-righteous trips that some of the remaining yahoos will no doubt throw when they are booted.