Having lost their fourth Immunity Challenge in a row, the Ulong tribe has been completely stripped of all confidence and hope. Considered by the entire tribe to be a weak link who contributed very little in the way of work, Kimberly Mullen, the 25-year-old graduate student from Huber Heights, Ohio, witnessed the unanimous vote that removed her from SURVIVOR: PALAU.
After seeing her torch snuffed, Kimberly declared, "I guess tonight was my night to go. I hope the girls really stick up for themselves, because lord knows the guys have proven that they're nothing special on this tribe."
HOW LOW CAN THEY GO?
< Returning from yet another Tribal Council at which had they sacrificed injured comrade Jeff, Ulong's morale sank even lower. Bobby Jon Drinkard, the 27-year-old waiter from Troy, Alabama, kept to himself, while Stephenie LaGrossa, the 25-year-old pharmaceutical sales rep. from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, derided opposing tribe Koror. Angry and frustrated, James Miller, the 33-year-old steelworker from Mobile, Alabama, attempted to rally the tribe with threats, which caused Kimberly to point out, "Maybe you could help motivate people instead of stomp on them." Ulong was simply coming undone.
ONE IS THE LONELIEST NUMBER
Both tribes awoke to a Tree Mail instructing them to pick one member as a delegate. As the tribes speculated about the purpose of this assignment, it was evident that their choices would be crucial.
Despite his continual volunteering, Coby Archa, the 32-year-old hairstylist from Athens, Texas, was frustrated to observe his Koror tribe pass him over in favor of Ian Rosenberger, the 23-year-old dolphin trainer from Key Largo, Florida.
Mired in chaos, Ulong could not even get organized enough to agree on a leader. "It seems like nobody likes to sit down and think about it for a second. It's very impulsive. I'm sure that it won't be the best decision once it's made," observed Kimberly.
REWARD CHALLENGE: BUILD A BETTER BATHROOM
Both tribes were surprised to see host Jeff Probst arrive at their camps aboard a Home Depot barge. Jeff explained that for the Reward Challenge, the tribes must build bathrooms for their camps. Each tribe's delegate must select the tools their tribe would use in the construction from The Home Depot tool shed. When the projects were completed, Jeff Probst would return with the SURVIVOR Production Designer, Jesse, who would judge both bathrooms. The tribe with the best new bathroom would win a new shelter built by SURVIVOR's crack production department.
As their delegate, Koror sent Ian, who carefully chose their tools. In disarray, Ulong hadn't even chosen a representative in time, and they were forced to settle on James at the last minute. After hearing of the task, James was confident in both his choices and the task as he had past experience in construction.
BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME
Koror set about the task of bathroom construction with a motivated plan. They drew up a sketch, then assigned the work. Tribe leaders Ian and Tom Westman, the 41-year-old NYC firefighter from Sayville, New York, made sure that everyone was both involved and encouraged. "If you watch Tom and Ian, they're very careful not to go through the day without saying in front of the group something good about everybody in the group," observed Willard Smith, the 57-year-old lawyer from Bellevue, Washington.
Over at the Ulong camp, the tribe followed James' lead as they worked to build their bathroom. The Ulong women immediately had a problem with what they perceived as belittling remarks from James. "I know what I am doing. I do all these things myself. When I have something broken in my house, I fix it. Landlord don't fix it. I fix it," explained Angie Jakusz, the 24-year-old bartender from New Orleans, Louisiana.
After the tribes had worked diligently, Jeff Probst brought SURVIVOR Production Designer Jesse to inspect. At Koror, Tom gave Jesse a guided tour of the new latrine and explained their production choices. "The tour was terrific. It was taking them through our thought process, how we worked and how we came up with what we came up with. I'm very confident, and I'd be surprised if we didn't win," concluded Katie Gallagher, the 29-year-old advertising executive from Merced, California.
Over at the Ulong camp, James gave Jesse a similar tour. The spirits were high at Ulong as they were confident that their bathroom set-up was strong. James smiled, "I think we won. No doubt."
THE VERDICT IS IN
Confident but nervous, Koror was delighted to witness The Home Depot barge in the distance. As the SURVIVOR Production crew unloaded their equipment and went to work constructing a new and palatial shelter, the members of Koror celebrated their well-deserved victory.
As the sun set on the Ulong camp, so did the hopes of the tribemates, who realized that victory was not theirs to be had. "Seems that we lost the Challenge. We worked hard. It looks good. It's a shame," sighed James.
IMMUNITY CHALLENGE: SUMO AT SEA
After assembling for the Immunity Challenge, Jeff Probst explained that the tribes would face off in a series of one-on-one sumo-style battles. The Survivors would use padded duffle bags to knock their adversaries out of a ring and into the sea. The first tribe to win six bouts would take Immunity.
The competition started out with a mano-a-mano battle between Bobby Jon and Tom. After fighting hard, Tom sent Bobby Jon over the side and into the water. As the Challenge continued, Koror took the five-two lead as Ibrehem Rahman, the 27-year-old waiter from Birmingham, Alabama, James, Kim and Bobby Jon all suffered defeats.
With Koror only one victory away from Immunity, Ulong staged an incredible comeback when Stephenie, Ibrehem and Angie all won their heats. As Angie tied up the competition at five, she shouted out, "Make them see how it feels!"
The tie-breaking match came down to James vs. Coby. And after a hard-fought battle, Coby gave everything he had to force that last push that sent James over the side and secured Immunity, once again, for his Koror tribe.
SAME OLD STORY FOR ULONG
After returning to camp from their defeat, the members of Ulong were faced with the familiar task of choosing whom to vote off. Having been on the chopping block the whole time for her perceived lack of a work ethic, Kim knew she was at risk. Paranoia set in as the other Ulong women speculated about how voting Kim off would affect the tribe's gender balance. "I would more than be willing to see some of these guys go, because they're not the greatest," laughed Kim.
In the end, Kim's strategy of starting a gender war fell flat as the Ulong tribe banded together in order to unanimously vote out the 25-year-old graduate student from Huber Heights, Ohio. Kim was the fourth castaway voted out of SURVIVOR: PALAU.