Thursday, March 10, 2011

Sleep In The Mud, Fool

Well, it all came down to this - good v. evil. The conflict is as old as time itself. Biblical, grand, universal, external, internal... only one side can win. If you believe in fairy tales like I do, then you know that good always triumphs over evil. Witches melt, stepsisters are humiliated, queens are foiled and we all live happily ever after. Without a happy ending (double entendre intended) the world would be a very depressing place. I mean, I don't know about you, but I don't want to live a life where Clarice doesn't catch Buffalo Bill or Lara Croft doesn't stop the Illuminati. I want Cady to get her revenge on The Plastics. I want Cindy Mancini to find love on a lawn mower. I want Ren and Ariel to get their dance. I want glitter and streamers and pixie dust and cake - a princess cake! Ponies grazing in a field are infinitely prettier than trolls scratching their pits under a bridge, don't you think? Let's recap, shall we?

Our Nicaraguan fairy tale begins under the cover of night. The insects are singing, the bats are restless, the moon hangs high and a short stocky bald man enters the scene. It's Lucifer (Russell Hantz) and he's about to settle into his new home on Rhode Island (Redemption Island). The fairies that were fluttering around the sleeping Pretty Pony's (Matt) head sensed an evil presence approaching so those bitches grabbed their purses and hightailed it on outta there. The stench of failure and festering pustules burned their tiny little noses and, seriously, who the hell wants to put up with that? The Pretty Pony awakens and Lucifer wastes no time telling him how his tribe did him wrong and threw the challenge with the express interest of getting him out of the game. You know, for someone who appreciates slick underhanded strategic moves, Lucifer is remarkably blind to the tremendous genius of a bitch slap he just received. The hypocrisy hung thick in the air as Lucifer rambled on and on about how his tribe didn't treat him fairly and had the audacity to lie to him. Rich coming from a guy who handcrafted his own legacy based on the lies that dripped off his tongue like honey. He got got. It's as simple as that. All he has left to hold onto now is the assumption that Pretty Pony will be shaking in his little shoes with nervousness come duel time. What Lucifer doesn't realize is that Pretty Ponies don't get nervous. They just wave their manes gloriously in the breeze and then trot off happily to a meadow filled with wildflowers. I mean, seriously, when have you ever seen an angry or insecure pony? Never, that's when.

The sun rises on a new day and our resident hall monitor is doing some cleaning up. Phillip has decided to sweep the dirt with a broom made of twigs as his tribe frustratingly tries to catch a few more minutes of precious sleep. To make matters worse, G.I. Joe's pink panties have an unfortunate case of the droops. He bends down and his ball sack waves hello. He leans over and his willy gives you a "howdy do". Phillip's junk just wants to come out and play and it's going to stretch those briefs as much as possible in order to get some face time with the other members of the tribe. Little Phil wants to hang with the gals and make some new friends, but the tribe is finding it difficult to welcome Little Phil with open arms. Natalie and Ashley cower and gag, Boston Rob has horrifying memories of some friend's dad and Grant simply digs a hole in the dirt and sticks his head in. Phillip knows he's misunderstood and he's ok with that for the time being. It's a generational thing. It's a gap in maturity. It's the difference between being on Halcion and not being on Halcion. Sure, Survivor is a social game as well as a physical game, but as long as Phillip keeps manning the perimeter and shooting the motherships out of the sky before they can attack, he thinks he can win over these young'uns in the end. It'll take patience, determination, a strong will *America The Beautiful begins to play in the background* courage, love of country, a defender of peace, a man who knows how to empty out the sanitation tank of an all terrain armored patrol vehicle in the mountains of Afghanistan with nothing more than some purification pellets and a few straws. *music swells* Phillip Sheppard is that man. God bless America!

Over at Zappa (Zapatera), things aren't exactly all that patriotic. Stephanie and Krista are frustrated that their pimp is gone and now they have no idea what corner to work or who to give the money to. They're just not having any fun anymore being stuck on an island with a bunch of goobers. Rooster (Ralph) sees how the girls are alienating themselves and decides that now is the best time in the game to show everyone his Hidden Immunity Idol. *throws hands in the air* No! Rooster... no! Why does everyone always blab about the Idol? Is it really that hard to keep a secret? I keep secrets all the time... like how I really did almost run over that lady who hit my car with her purse in the grocery story parking lot or how I once told someone I was a scout for Playgirl magazine or how I cried that time Miley Cyrus surprised a fan on Oprah. See? It's not hard to keep secrets. Dummies! As Rooster clearly isn't a genius secret keeper like I am, he gathers up his alliance and reveals the Idol in all it's glory. David and Mike start high fiving. Sarita does a little dance. Steve (whom I'm thinking of calling The Cuddler) starts rubbing random people and general merriment ensues. It's a big celebration as Rooster and his chicks are now convinced they have all they need to fight off Lucifer were he to come back into the game at some point.

Speaking of Lucifer, it's time to prepare for the duel. Back at Omarion (Ometepe), Phillip has uncovered the tree mail inviting two people to visit Rhode Island and he's decided that he wants to be one of the people to go. After jumping behind bushes using the mail scroll as a periscope, he eventually delivers the message to the rest of his tribe and requests that he takes Kristina with him. They're all like, "Yeah, whatever, go. Have fun. Later." and then they rolled over and went back to their naps. Kristina was happy to go as she knows her days are numbered and getting a good look at what goes on at Rhode Island might work to her advantage down the road. Phillip, on the other hand, quelled his excitement and got to work. He had to suit up, pack his rucksack and shine his shoes. This is strictly a reconaissance mission to gather intel to one Mr. Phillip Sheppard. Back when he was with the U.S. government, Phillip frequently had to go out and infiltrate tiny terrorist cells known as Starbucks. It was his job to bring back the rich cocoa bean elixirs to his handlers so they could analyze it and use it to strengthen our borders. Phillip may not have been on the frontlines of homeland security, but he was an integral part of the intern program. Having been in it for 28 years he knows a thing or two about how to handle an ornery barista. Therefore, Rhode Island should be a walk in the park to a hardened secret agent like Phillip Sheppard. Over at Zappa, Rooster and Sarita are the chosen ones. They want to make sure Lucifer gets his comeuppance and is no longer a threat to their peaceful and loving tribe.

And this brings us to the moment of truth. Rhode Island. Will the big bad Survivor villain get to stay or will the shiny pretty freshly-scrubbed Adonis triumph? It's no secret who I'm rooting for. Pony power! Sure, he's playing for "his God" and sure, he's a little creepy in that way that all super Christians are creepy, but I just find it impossible to root against him. He walks onscreen and I see Jax Teller and if you think I'm rooting against Jax Teller you've got another thing coming. SAMCRO fo' life! *beats on chest and flashes gang sign* Also, I'm just plain sick of Lucifer. I want new Survivor stars to emerge. I want new legacies to be created. Lucifer's bag o'tricks is getting old whereas I think Rob actually bringing something new to the table every time he plays. Back in the day, I loathed Rob. Everytime I heard that voice of his, I cringed. But, he's won me over with innovation I guess. He's a psychological player and I kind of dig that.

Alright so here we are and it's duel time. Dimples is there with his somber "Rhode Island voice" and he knows that what is about to go down could be history in the making. No matter how hard he tries to hide that smirk of his, it keeps sneaking out - much like Phillip's junk! His normally drab blue shirt is even a tad bluer today. It's cornflower blue if you will. For today's duel, players will stack a series of blocks on a multi-level platform all the while avoiding pesky trip wires. The object of the game is to arrange the blocks so they fall like dominoes ultimately releasing a ball which will smash a tile. The winner of this duel lives to see another day. *silence* A hush falls over the crowd and... Survivors ready, go.

Lucifer and Pretty Pony begin to meticulously stack their blocks. Lucifer is driven by the burning embers in his soul while Pretty Pony is motivated by a higher power. Their hands seem to be steady as Dimples continues to narrate throughout. They crawl in between trip wires, glance over at one another, the music swells and I gotta tell ya, my heart was in my throat. *thump thump, thump thump* It was delicious! Pretty Pony gains a slight lead and attempts to knock down his blocks. He's good, good, good... then, bad! He falls short. Lucifer is thrilled and prepares to make his first attempt. Blocks are falling, falling, falling, then... no! The door is open again for Pretty Pony! Oh god, the suspense! *covers face with hands* The crowd of four in the arena is on edge, Pretty Pony is scrambling, Lucifer is starting over, I'm freaking out, Pretty Pony makes his second attempt and... PRETTY PONY STAYS ALIVE!!! *fireworks*

Twitter went crazy, my face hurt from smiling so much and then something nobody expected took place. Survivor's most evil and villainous player tried to hide his bulbous frame under a tiny fedora as his lip trembled, his head shook and he came to the sudden realization that a bunch of newborn ninnies managed to squash his entire legacy into nothing more than a man in a tank top standing there crying in front of Jeff Probst. It was gorgeous! Bee-you-tee-full! The crowd looked on stunned, the air stood still and for a second I almost started to feel bad. Then, of course, Lucifer opened his mouth again and the moment was lost. The second Dimples suggested Lucifer might be embarrassed by this loss, the horned devil unleashed all his tribal secrets to the onlookers. He said something about being a quarterback and his tribe being pee-wee's and how he had to run the ball and throw the ball and do whatever with the ball. I don't know. He was rambling, but something in his rambling pissed off Rooster enough to make him speak up.

In a major WTF moment, Rooster starts to tell Lucifer that he found the Idol. *smacks self in head* I'm looking around the room like, "Is this really happening?" My dog looked up at me and said, "Yeah Bitch, it's really happening." Rooster was literally digging through his bag preparing to show Lucifer the Idol when Sarita whispers to him, "Don't do this." Rooster puts his bag back and all of a sudden announces he was faking having the Idol all along to which Lucifer then threw his head back and started cracking up. Salvador Dali would have been jealous of the surrealism in that moment. It was swirling and melting and the colors were vibrant and lush. I kind of loved it and wanted to get lost in it and then... Phillip spoke. Oy. Phillip Sheppard is a human lie detector and he's been honorably discharged from the United States government as a secret federal agent. He's worked with Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones so, in addition to sniffing out liars trying to smuggle dirty bombs into our country, he's also extremely adept at killing aliens. It is his professional and federal opinion that Rooster is a liar liar pants on fire. Then, just when I thought things couldn't get any weirder, Lucifer outs Sarita for being Zappa's leader. Huh? She is? Since when? That's news to me. Surely, we would have seen her do some "leading" by this point, right? In the end, I was happy, horrified and confused. Lucifer is gone and he went out just like he came in... in a ball of fire spewing out newborn baby's blood. Good riddance. Please don't come back. I'm done with you.

Back at Omarion Boston Rob knows that he needs to find that Hidden Immunity Idol before Kristina gets back from Rhode Island. You see, Kristina's got a nose like a bloodhound and she can hunt out Idols quicker than Phillip can dig a trench with his bare hands. It's fast baby, fast! Under the clever guise of having a "Beach Picnic Day" filled with games, prizes and freshly caught crabmeat, Rob lures his tribe away from camp and thus begins the elaborate Poop Ruse. You see, earlier in the day Rob began to complain of constipation. He feigned discomfort, massaged his bowels and silently ached to himself. It was all part of his master plan to get some alone time back at camp so he could go hunting for the Idol. So simple yet so genius.

So, the tribe is out frolicking on the beach playing games and sunning themselves when suddenly Rob gets that familiar pang in his gut. He quickly excuses himself and the tribe responds with sympathy and understanding as Rob races back to camp, grabs a shovel and begins to dig furiously for the Idol. 5 minutes go by, then 10 minutes, then 15 minutes and he still can't find the Idol. He knows the tribe will begin to suspect something if he doesn't hurry up so then he begins to look up into the branches of the trees. After having searched 38 of the 40 trees at camp he finally finds the Idol and the Poop Ruse is a success! He races back to the beach where the games resume and no one is the wiser. I love it!

Rob isn't the only one who can dupe his tribe using slight of hand trickery. Phillip, in addition to putting the bomb in the asteroid for his friend Billy Bob Thornton, is also a master of smoke and mirrors. He tells Kristina that they'll share what happened with Lucifer's breakdown, but they won't say anything about Rooster having the Idol. Phillip wants to use that intel (his word, not mine) to persuade Rob to keep Kristina in the game. Kristina, knowing Phillip is about as sane as Sybil, just nods and smiles and lets Phillip do whatever it is he's going to do. It's not that Phillip's idea was a bad idea per se. It's just that he's the absolute worst negotiator ever in the history of negotiators. Let's just say, if I get kidnapped by Somali pirates and Phillip Sheppard is in charge of bringing me home to safety, tell my family I love them and I'll see them in the afterlife because there's no way in hell I'm getting out alive.

What Phillip should have done was offered Rob an alternate plan - like maybe getting Mascaroni (Andrea) out. He could have pitched how close Pretty Pony and Mascaroni were and how having them battle it out at a duel now is better than risking him coming back in the game later and teaming up with her. I don't know. That's just one idea out of a million that Phillip could have come up with. Instead, he said something like, "I have information. The intel. There's a ransom note. We're prepared to make a deal. Put a bag of unmarked bills under the trash can on the corner of 7th and Main. I'll call you on the pay phone with further instructions. No dye bags. I have a gun! Oh and Kristina stays in the game, ya hear me?" Oh for fuck's sake. All Rob had to do was give Phillip a side eye and he ended up spilling the beans on everything anyways. Phillip should have lied about poop instead. Keep it simple, I always say.

This brings us to the big Immunity Challenge where the tribes were testing on how well they know their Craftsman tool kits. I always thought it was a tad strange they were given so many tools to begin with. I guess this challenge is the reason why. The tribes have to make their way over a balance beam where they will use a crow bar to open a crate. Inside the crate in a shovel which they will then use to find an axe. With the axe, they'll chop through a rope releasing two saws. With the saws, they'll saw through a wall creating planks. They'll use the planks to complete a ramp which will get the entire tribe to the top of the platform where they must hammer three nails breaking three tiles. First tribe to get their Craftsman toolkit on top of their table wins Immunity and a Reward of a barbecue set complete with food. As Zappa has one extra tribe member, they sit out Krista. Survivors ready, go!

Out of the gate it's Rob and Rooster. Rooster demolishes his crate in one swift movement and retrieves his shovel. Julie grabs the shovel and begins to dig. Rob finally gets his shovel and now Grant is digging. I suppose I could have gotten caught up in the tension and craziness of the challenge but instead I was transfixed by Grant's supermodel legs. End to end I think they could circumnavigate the globe. Those bitches are long! I wonder if he's ever strangled anybody with them. He used to play football, right? Anyhow, race race race, chop chop chop, slice slice slice... Phillip's balls begin to sweat, Steve doesn't know how to use a saw, it becomes clear that Mike has perhaps dismembered a few bodies in the past.... assemble, assemble, assemble, hammer, hammer, hammer and ZAPPA WINS IMMUNITY!!!

Back at Omarion the mood is somber. It's not somber because they lost. It's somber because Phillip is giving another one of this Pre-Tribal Council speeches. "You all played admiringly-ly. We're all winners. We all put forf a great effort. Get down! Now, now, now! The enemy is approaching!" Then he shot at some ants with a stick and went off into the woods to find his morse code machine. Such a weirdo. Before, Omarion could ignore Phillip and laugh at his silly games and quirks, but now their hatred towards him is so strong it's palpable. Ashley wants to claw his eyeballs out while Grant is measuring his legs making sure they're long enough to wrap around Phillip's gigantic head. Kristina sees all the various plots to kill Phillip being hatched and wonders to herself if maybe she can plant some seeds about the Idol in a last ditch effort to stay. She says to no one in particular, "There must have been a clue in that Reward box." Natalie hears this and becomes suspicious. She runs to Rob who immediately doesn't like what he hears. Kristina is dangerous whereas Phillip is a fucking idiot. Phillip's not a threat to anyone, but Kristina is actually smart and Rob doesn't like that.

Rob's plan is to make the tribe think Kristina has the Idol so he tells them to split the votes - 3 for Kristina, 2 for Phillip. They agree to the plan, but Ashley is unhappy with it. She tells Grant how stressful Phillip is making the camp. Grant agrees with her and thinks ousting Kristina instead of Phillip is a mistake. Phillip is too much of a loose cannon. He's hazardous to have around. Wrap some yellow police tape around his head and call it a day.

This brings us to Tribal Council where Kristina is immediately put into the hot seat. She admits she's a little worried and thinks that where she started out in this game might be to blame for the predicament she's in right now. She was always on the wrong side of the tribe as far as numbers were concerned. She says she wants to stay and the discussion turns to talk of second chances. Everybody pretty much agrees that second chances are always an option until Rob flat out says that, to be fair, Kristina only really just joined the tribe recently. For the first 8 days she was an outsider. The question now is whether or not they want to bring her into the fold.

Dimples asks Kristina who they should vote out. She responds by saying they should vote out the weakest member - someone who's being disruptive. Someone like Phillip. Uh oh... Phillip smacks his tattoos, whips his resume out of his back pocket and all the answers we've all been searching for are finally answered. If you listened closely, you would have heard that Phillip worked sanitation for the government - from which he was "honorably" discharged - and received the second highest medal you can get during PEACE TIME. Peace time! What's that, the medal for the cleanest toilet? And, don't they "honorably" discharge you if you're crazy time looney tunes? While we got some answers, we also got a million more questions. Like, how is working field sanitation the same as being a secret federal agent? And, is "field sanitation" code for smearing poop on the walls of your padded cell. I have no idea, but I will get to the bottom of this. I promise you that. Time to vote...

The fourth person voted out of Survivor: Redemption Island is Kristina. Kristina actually reads this little bloggy blog faithfully and is a very cool lady so I'm sad to see her go so soon. She's crafty which I like, but her mistakes early on made it very tough for her to bounce back. I can't help but think how much longer she would have lasted were she put on Zappa instead of Omarion. And, who knows, maybe she'll fight her way back on Rhode Island. One thing she can say until the end of time is "I lasted longer than Russell Hantz did on Survivor: Redemption Island." Shit, get a t-shirt made! I would. So, what did you guys think of last night's episode? Are you happy Lucifer is gone or did you cry like he did? Is Ralph getting a little big for his overalls? Would you let Phillip clean your toilet? Comment it out bitches and have a great day!