Last week on Survivor, everyone survived the first episode of the merge, thanks to Julie throwing in the towel after her trail mix theft scandal. I have a feeling that the remaining contestants won’t be so lucky this week.
It’s Day 19 and Missy is annoyed that Julie got that far only to quit on their alliance. But she says it was just a wrinkle in her alliance’s plan to get rid of Josh.
Jon asks Jaclyn if they’re playing a good game right now or just being deceitful. Jaclyn seems to be okay with doing both. Jon is comfortable as long as people are trying to work with them instead of trying to get them out. At this point though, he thinks it’s in their best interest to get rid of Jeremy next.
For a reward of a Survivor taco bar (yum!), two teams will compete to load heavy puzzle pieces onto a cart and push the cart to the base of a tower. Once they have their pieces, they have to build a temple and one person has to climb to the top to release a rope and hoist a statue to the top of a pyramid. Keith, Natalie, Jeremy, Wes and Reed are on the yellow team and Jon, Alec, Baylor, Josh and Jaclyn are on the blue team. Missy wasn’t picked and can’t win the reward.
Yellow is off to a strong lead and Blue can’t really get it together. Yellow completes every aspect of the challenge before Blue is even ready to unload their pieces off their cart. Yellow wins the reward.
They have to send one person from Blue to Exile Island. They decide to send Jon because he’s young and strong and can make it on his own.
When Yellow gets to the taco bar, it’s quite glorious. It even includes margaritas! Reed notices it’s a little strained because there’s a mix of people on different alliances. Keith says he didn’t know what they were going to do if they had to go to another Tribal Council. Jeremy doesn’t buy it, but it tells him that at least Wes is trying to play the game even if he’s not good at it.
Keith warns Wes to slow down when eating, but Wes doesn’t listen so he gets sick. It’s a #TacoOverload. So that’s gross.
Josh corners Baylor again to tell her that she owes him at least one vote. While I understand Josh is trying to do anything he can do to get the numbers, I’m not a fan of this strategy. Baylor didn’t sign anything. Not only do alliances change sometimes throughout the game, but how can you blame the girl for aligning with her mother? Why don’t you ditch your BF and align with Baylor of alliances mean that much.
Anyway, Baylor comes to the same conclusion. She’s not a fan of Josh’s strategy either. She was taught as a kid to give gifts without expecting anything back.
Josh decides it’s best to give up on Baylor. He makes sure everything is cool with Jaclyn, who assures him that she and Jon are still with him.
After they get back from the taco bar, Wes is still feeling the effects of eating too many tacos. The ladies are disgusted at Wes, Alec and Keith for being so rude and disgusting around camp. Even Jeremy thinks the way they act is crude and annoying in the company of women.
What’s even more annoying is that Alec continues to treat Baylor like a baby sister. He bosses her around and tells her to get rid of his trash. Missy tells Baylor just to let it go, but it obviously gets under Baylor’s skin.
Jaclyn thinks the guys should be trying to be nicer to her since they need her vote. She notices a huge difference in the way they treat her now that Jon’s not around, which is just not cool.
Alec and Keith say they can’t let Jeremy win immunity tonight. Alec says that Jon for sure will vote with them, but Keith’s not so sure about Jaclyn. He says he’s seen her talking to Baylor a lot today.
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Poor Jon is the first person this season to have to suffer Exile Island alone. He’s glad that it gives Jaclyn some time back at camp to build relationships with everyone so she’s not accused of riding coattails if they get to the end.
He finds a clue to a hidden immunity idol on Exile Island. He spends some time looking for it along the shore then moves to climb the rock on the peninsula. He finds the idol there and claims the rock for the Power Couple from Michigan.
The immunity challenge this week is meant to challenge the survivors’ minds. Jeff holds up pictures in sequence, then the contestants have to show the symbols on their cube in the same sequence. Last one standing wins immunity.
Jon is the first out, followed shortly by Reed, Wes and then Alec. It ends up as a showdown between the two people who need immunity most: Josh and Jeremy. Jeremy wins which isn’t great news for Josh.
Josh decides that their alliance has to stick to their plan, except voting for Baylor instead of Jeremy. He knows that he has to rely on Jon and Jaclyn to vote with him to survive this Tribal, which makes him uncomfortable.
Jon tells Jaclyn right away that he has the idol. And she tells him right away that she’s done with the guys. Jon doesn’t like that the guys disrespected the love of his life, but he knows they can’t play with emotion. He says they’ve been in the swing vote situation a lot now, but usually they’ve been on the same page. But he knows they have to continue working together to get further in the game.
Missy asks Keith if he’s with Josh or if there’s any chance of swaying him. Keith tells Missy outright that he’s voting for Baylor because of her laziness around camp. Another rule from Survivor 101 (which we’re getting a lot of this season after, “don’t throw a challenge” and “don’t steal food”) is “don’t tell the person you’re voting for that you’re voting for them.” And in this case, that person’s mom counts for just as much.
Josh is already extremely nervous because he knew he had to win the immunity idol. Jeremy felt the same way too, but things worked out better for him.
Wes points out that the alliances are pretty much already known except that Jon and Jaclyn are in the middle.
Natalie says that she’s protective over the original Hunahpu tribe members and she always felt close with Jon. She also points out how rude the other male members of the alliance were to Jaclyn after Jon left for Exile Island. Jaclyn admits that she doesn’t feel respected out here even though she and Jon are making decisions together.
Reed makes a pitch for their alliance. He tells Jon and Jaclyn that since they’re a couple and big physical threats, Jeremy’s alliance will separate them right away. Jeremy points out that in an all-couples alliance, they’ll have to turn on each other eventually.
Jeff reads the votes and they’re tied. Five votes for Baylor and five votes for Josh. In the end, Jon and Jac decided to toss their hat in with Jeremy and they vote for Josh.
While I’m sad to see Josh go because he was playing the game smart and hard, there was literally nothing else he could have done to save himself. It was also probably the smart decision for Jon and Jac to start to eliminate the alliance with more physical threats of winning immunity later on. That, and those guys really were jerks to Jaclyn. In a social game, sometimes that matters.
The newest episode of Survivor: San Juan del Sur airs on Wednesdays at 8pm on CBS.
(Image courtesy of CBS)