CBS

Season 7: Episode 5 - FAILING TO FAIL: MICHELLE VOTED OUT
Posted on Jul 14, 2011 11:30am

As SURVIVOR: PEARL ISLANDS moved forward, the once-dominant Drake tribe lost their second Immunity Challenge in a row, causing them to vote Michelle Tesauro, the 22-year-old student from Pittstown, New Jersey, out of the tribe in a six to one decision. Michelle's failure to feign weakness at the Immunity Challenge angered her tribemates, who chose to send her packing. Shortly after her torch was extinguished, Michelle remarked, "Regardless of all the politics, I wish I could've been here longer, just had more time to kick some butt and really get into the game."

MORGAN FORCED TO MOVE SHELTER
With Drake member Rupert Boneham, the 39-year-old troubled teens mentor from Indianapolis, Indiana, as a guest, the Morgan tribe moved their shelter in order to avoid the rising tide. The endless debating coupled with long procrastination caused Rupert to observe, "These guys work very hard at not working hard. They fight and argue and bicker and bitch amongst each other so much that I know why it takes them hours to do something."


Missing their beloved tribemate, the Drake camp decided to save their final can of Spam for Rupert upon his return from Morgan. Speculation then ensued as to how much information Rupert had been giving the Morgan tribe. "My concern with Rupert is that I'm afraid he's giving up too much information about us and not realizing it," worried Trish Dunn, the 42-year-old sales executive from Annapolis, Maryland.

Over at Morgan, Rupert was welcomed with open arms as the big guy taught Ryan Opray, the 31-year-old electrician from Los Gatos, California, how to fish. Despite losing a big fish, Ryan and Rupert still returned with a hefty bounty for the depleted tribe. "Rupert's been a godsend. He's an absolute workaholic, work ethic is impeccable," noted Andrew Savage, the 40-year-old attorney from Chicago, Illinois.

REWARD CHALLENGE: PADDLE FOR PADDLES
As the tribes convened for the Reward Challenge, Host Jeff Probst explained that the Challenge involved collecting from the water the rungs to a ladder, as well as retrieving a golden idol hidden in an old Spanish well in the jungle. The first tribe to assemble their ladder and place their golden idol at the top of their designated platform would be the winner. Besides the right to loot one item from the other tribe, the castaways would be playing for a water prize, which consisted of a portable shower, a pot for boiling water, two jerry cans, rain jackets, sponges, shampoo and conditioner. If Morgan were to win, they would also receive the first piece of the map to their buried treasure.

As the race started, the tribes collected the ladder rungs at the bottom of the ocean floor in close competition. Drake lost control of their boat due to the faulty navigating of member Jon Dalton, the 29-year-old art consultant from Danville, Virginia. This made the crucial difference as Morgan quickly assembled the ladder, found the idol and finished the Challenge first to win the Reward.

As Morgan celebrated, Rupert was offered the choice of returning to the Morgan camp to enjoy a shower. But wanting to go home, he opted to rejoin his Drake tribemates immediately.

MORGAN LOOTS DRAKE
For the first time, Morgan had the opportunity to take one item from the Drake camp. Given the honors, Andrew arrived at the Drake camp to loot one crucial item. Because Morgan was almost completely out of food, it was no surprise that Andrew chose to take a bag of rice from Drake. Rupert was very friendly in offering Andrew even more rice than was allotted before Andrew's arrival. Rupert was clearly beloved at both camps, which caused him to theorize, "There is probably a lot of danger in being too much in control of both tribes. Who knows what my own tribe even thinks of me? But if I push too hard, I will end up alienating someone."

DRAKE PREPS FOR THE IMMUNITY CHALLENGE
Upon reading the Tree Mail inviting them to an Immunity Challenge that most likely involved eating exotic seafood, Drake put their strategy in place. Since Michelle claimed to have a high tolerance for eating questionable food, the tribe decided to use her as a decoy. Michelle would pretend to have trouble downing the fare in order to fool Morgan into choosing her to compete in the case of a tiebreaker or uneven competition. "What we're thinking is the other tribe is going to have to pick one person to drink twice, so we're going to make her be a decoy for all of us," explained Trish.

IMMUNITY CHALLENGE: SURVIVOR SMOOTHIES
As the tribes met for the Immunity Challenge, Jeff Probst explained that the castaways would have to spin a wheel, which would determine two ingredients that would be blended together for them to drink. The menu consisted of red shellfish, sardines, razor clams, bleeding clams, sea water, squid, mango, rock oysters, conch, octopus, coconut juice and, of course, a mysterious concoction of Jeff's making. The first person unable to keep their smoothie down would cause their whole tribe to lose Immunity.

As the wheel was spun, both tribes bravely gulped down the concoctions one by one, all the way to a tie. But when it came time for Morgan to chose a Drake member, they did not chose Michelle, because she didn't pretend to be squeamish as was previously planned. Instead, Morgan opted to compete against Sandra Diaz-Twine, the 29-year-old office assistant from Ft. Lewis, Washington, in the Challenge. Sandra was able to drink her disgusting smoothie, but had a lot of trouble swallowing the sardine chaser, which allowed Darrah Johnson, the 22-year-old mortician from Liberty, Mississippi, to win Immunity again for the Morgan tribe.

ONE DRAKE MUST GO
Back at the Drake camp, the tribe dealt with the inevitability of a Tribal Council vote that evening. Feeling vulnerable, Sandra worried she would be sent packing for losing the Challenge. Michelle had a feeling she was also on the chopping block for not following the plan. "I am extremely pissed off at Michelle," complained Jon, "Michelle was planning on pretending as though she would be the worst in the bunch, when in reality she was the best. But her freaking ego wouldn't let her do it."

In the end, Michelle received six out of seven votes at Tribal Council and became the fifth person to be voted off SURVIVOR: PEARL ISLANDS.