|Posted on Jul 14, 2011 11:30am|
After setting aside the game to tell it all, Caryn Groedel, the 46-year-old civil rights lawyer from Solon, Ohio, trusted an alliance of women who immediately betrayed her, sending her home in a unanimous vote. After the fateful decision, Caryn observed, "Everybody's been very deceptive, and I'm the one who starts speaking about it, and you ultimately have to face the music anyway."
As the Koror tribe returned to camp after a stunning Tribal Council in which Gregg Carey, the 28-year-old business consultant from Chicago, Illinois, was sacrificed, Jennifer Lyon, the 32-year-old nanny from Encino, California, was surprisingly calm about having been deceived. With three women and two men left, Ian Rosenberger, the 23-year-old dolphin trainer from Key Largo, Florida, worried about an alliance of women picking off the men, remarking, "If we can avoid that in the next 24 hours, we're money for the Final Four."
LOTS TO THINK ABOUT
With five members remaining in Koror, the politicking kicked into high gear. Jennifer aggressively lobbied Ian to rid the tribe of Koror's biggest threat, Tom Westman, the 41-year-old NYC firefighter from Sayville, New York. Meanwhile on the beach, Tom sat with Caryn discussing his distrust of Katie Mullen, the 25-year-old graduate student from Huber Heights, Ohio, asserting that she was next to go. "I don't know if I'm being played," Caryn confessed. "This could be part of the planning and plotting in the last six days."
REWARD CHALLENGE: RAFT RALLY As the tribe convened for the Reward Challenge, host Jeff Probst pulled up a curtain to reveal the Reward: a brand new 2005 Chevrolet Corvette! He explained that the Survivors would race into the lagoon on bamboo rafts and collect a series of mileage markers. Once all the markers were collected, they must be placed under the sign marker designating the distance from Palau to various big cities. The first player to place all the markers correctly would win. The winner then would immediately jump into their new Corvette and drive it to a Palauan mansion for a barbeque feast and a good night's sleep.
The competition started with a flurry as the Survivors rushed out to sea to gather their first bag. Ian jumped out to an early lead as Caryn struggled and fell behind. As the castaways continued to paddle out diligently and retrieve bags of mileage markers, it turned into a two-man race between Tom and Ian. The women of Koror were not going to catch up. In a duel with his friend Tom, Ian finally returned to the shore with his fifth and final bag. As Tom paddled back to shore with his final bag, he could only watch as Ian quickly placed the mileage posts correctly and won the shiny new Corvette.
Jeff Probst then offered Ian a chance to choose a partner to share his Reward trip. Having promised to take Katie with him if he ever had the chance, Ian shocked her by choosing Tom. And as Tom and Ian drove off, the disappointment was obvious on Katie's face.
LITTLE RED CORVETTE
Cruising through the winding island roads in his new Corvette, Ian drove Tom up to a striking hillside mansion. Tom and Ian used their time alone together to reaffirm their plan to make it to the Final Two. As the two took in the sweeping view, Tom explained, "What we have to do is bring [Katie] back into the fold and convince her that we're all going to play this thing till the end."
Meanwhile, back at camp, Katie voiced anger at Ian for going back on his word. Katie's indignation, coupled with the men's absence, united the women in an alliance. Katie discussed the possibilities of Immunity: "If it's Ian, we vote off Tom. And if it's Tom, we vote off Ian."
Returning to camp, Ian was stunned to realize that Katie was furious with him. In a tearful exchange, Ian apologized to Katie, who replied that she felt betrayed and could not trust him. After pleading for her forgiveness, Ian even offered to opt out of the game to save their friendship. Claiming she would never allow it to go that far, Katie accepted his apology.
IMMUNITY CHALLENGE: R.A.M.
When the Survivors assembled for the Immunity Challenge, Jeff Probst explained that this event would test their mental and physical agility. First, they must traverse a watercourse to get reference to an arrangement of various icons on a puzzle grid. Next, they must make their way back to the start to rearrange their own icons on a blank grid to match what they had seen on the course. The players must repeat the watercourse until one of them replicated their grid exactly and won Immunity.
After all the Survivors made their way across the watercourse, they studied their boards. Tom was first back to his grid, but couldn't remember the icons' exact positions and had to return to his master puzzle. As the Koror tribemates navigated the watercourse to their master grids and back again, it was apparent that the memory puzzle would take some time to solve. After Ian called out that he had finished his puzzle, Jeff Probst informed him that he had gotten it wrong and must return to his master grid. But it didn't matter, because Tom diligently assembled his puzzle correctly and took the crucial Immunity, securing his spot in the Final Four.
As the tribe returned to camp, they also returned to speculation over whether or not there was a female alliance in play. Even with the Immunity Necklace around his neck, Tom speculated that he might have to win every remaining Immunity Challenge to stay on Palau. When Ian lobbied Katie to uphold their original alliance, both agreed to remain friends whatever happened. "After tonight, it's a one-in-four chance of winning a million dollars. Those are high stakes," assessed Caryn.
In the end, those high stakes didn't go Caryn's way, and her four tribemates banded together to oust her from Koror. Caryn thus became the fourteenth castaway out of SURVIVOR: PALAU and will serve on the Jury that ultimately decides who holds the honor of Sole Survivor and goes home $1 million richer.
Who will be Sole Survivor? Find out on the exciting season finale Sunday, May 15, at 8 PM ET/PT. Then stay tuned for the live reunion show at 10 PM ET/PT, only on CBS.