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Season 23: Episode 14 - Then There Were Five

Then There Were Five: ­...AND THEN TH­ERE WERE FIVE
On night 32, Te Tuna returns to camp after having just voted out Edna at Tribal Council. Coach, Brandon, Rick, Albert and Sophie celebrate the fact that they stayed loyal to each other and made it to the end together. Brandon calls them together to pray and give thanks for their accomplishment. Now that they are down to five, Coach admits, “We know that there’s no more loyalty. We know that it’s every cat for himself.” Later when Sophie and Albert are alone in the shelter, they discuss whether to vote off Rick or Brandon next, if Ozzy comes back to Te Tuna with immunity. Albert reveals, “I’m in a good position to pull off what I think would be the biggest blindside of the game, thus far.” Albert points to Sophie and says, “If only she knew, she’s next. She’s got no idea it’s coming.”

COACH, RICK AND I
The next morning, Albert is rethinking his plans for the final three. Since early in the game, he has been planning on going to the end with Coach and Sophie. He admits, “The more and more I look at it, Sophie’s getting increasingly dangerous.” Albert is worried about how smart Sophie is and how much of a physical threat she has proven to be, after winning two immunity challenges. He then considers taking Brandon or Rick instead to the final three. Albert knows that although Rick is well liked, he is not a great strategist nor has he won any immunity challenges. So, Albert decides that Rick would be less of a threat than Sophie to take to the end with Coach. Albert says, “I feel like I have been the most aggressive player trying to garner jury votes and position myself to win one million dollars and go home the sole survivor.”

REDEMPTION DUEL: BLOCK IT OUT
Ozzy and Edna enter the Redemption arena after the five remaining Te Tuna members take their seats in the audience. Jeff Probst, the host, explains the rules of the duel. First they will race to solve a slide puzzle, which releases a hatchet. They will then use the hatchet to chop a rope, which releases a bag of puzzle cubes. These cubes must then be stacked, so that there are no repeating colors on any side. The first person to get it right stays alive in the game and still has a chance at the million-dollar prize. The loser is out of the game and joins the jury.

Ozzy quickly solves the slide puzzle releasing his hatchet. Edna struggles with the puzzle until Albert gives her suggestions from the audience. Meanwhile, Ozzy uses the hatchet to release his puzzle cubes and starts working on stacking the cubes. He is in the lead. Edna finally solves her slide puzzle and uses the hatchet to retrieve her puzzle cubes. She has some catching up to do. Ozzy moves his cubes around trying to make sure that the same color does not repeat on any of the four sides of his stack. Each side of the stack must have four different colors red, green, yellow and blue. Edna works quickly trying to solve her cube stack, while Ozzy takes his time, since he has had so much more time to work on this final puzzle. Edna once again receives suggestions from her former tribe mates in the audience. Ozzy receives no help from the audience, which proves that they do not want Ozzy back in the game. In the end, Ozzy solves his cube puzzle first and wins the duel. Therefore, Ozzy stays on Redemption Island, while Edna is out of the game and joins the jury.

TURNING ON EACH OTHER
After getting back to camp from the duel, Albert lays in the hammock. He admits that honor and integrity were things that Upolu claimed were important from the beginning. Albert reveals, “In the game of Survivor, I do not care a single thing about honor and integrity.” Brandon comes over to Albert and tells him that things are looking good for Coach, Albert and himself to make it to the end. Albert agrees, but points out that Ozzy could mess up their plans, if he returns from Redemption and wins immunity. In reality, Albert has no plans of taking Brandon to the end, but doesn’t want to admit that to him, so he can keep Brandon on his side. He then encourages Brandon to vote for Sophie at the next Tribal Council. Meanwhile, Coach and Sophie are talking strategy on the other side of camp. Sophie tells Coach that Ozzy is a real threat, since he has been nice to all the people coming through Redemption Island and is therefore scoring jury votes. She makes the argument that Brandon should be voted out next. She tells Coach, “We have to put the two most dangerous players in the game together and get one of them out.” Sophie feels that Brandon is dangerous, because others perceive him as loyal, trustworthy and godly. Coach agrees with Sophie. Sophie and Coach then talk to Rick and encourage him to vote for Brandon. Rick gives them his word that he will do so. Later, Albert finds Coach and tells him that he feels Sophie is the biggest threat and encourages Coach to take Brandon to the end instead of Sophie. Coach disagrees and tries to explain to Albert that Brandon is more likely to get votes from the jury than Sophie. Just then, Brandon approaches the two of them and asks what they have been talking about. Albert tells him they have been discussing jury threats. Brandon does not believe them and tells them he is nervous about their conversation. Coach is not happy with being questioned and bullied by Brandon, just the way that his Uncle Russell had done in the past. Coach vents, “Brandon really pissed me off. I think Mr. Hantz came down and gave Brandon a shot of the Hantz.” Brandon tells Coach that he hurts his feelings by comparing him with Russell and asks Coach for a hug to rebuild their friendship. Coach obliges and gives Brandon a hug, but says, “That apple never falls far from the tree.” Brandon’s bullying has helped Coach make up his mind on whom to vote for next.

IMMUNITY CHALLENGE: BATMAN WALL
The five remaining Te Tuna tribe members arrive and take their places on the mat. Jeff Probst explains the rules of the challenge. Each contestant will climb a massive wall collecting bags of puzzle pieces. With each bag, they will make their way further up the wall. Once they have collected all five bags they will sort their puzzle pieces into pairs. Three of the pieces will not pair up. These pieces will reveal a number code. The contestants will then race back to the top of the wall and use the number code to unlock a box, which will raise their flag. First person to raise their flag wins immunity and is safe from the vote. In addition, the winner earns a reward of pizza, garlic bread and a soft drink delivered to their camp.

Brandon and Rick are the first to retrieve all five of their bags from the wall. They begin working on their puzzle while Coach, Sophie and Albert are still retrieving their puzzle pieces. Finally, Coach, Sophie and Albert collect all their bags off the wall and start working on their puzzles. They are all searching for the three pieces that cannot be matched up. Brandon and Coach prove to be fastest with the puzzle. Rick struggles with the puzzle, while Albert is still struggling to get his puzzle bags open. Brandon thinks he has the three unmatched pieces and races up the wall to give them a try. As Brandon attempts to use his numbers to open his box, Coach heads up the wall with his numbers. Brandon opens his box and raises his flag before Coach makes it to the top of the wall. So, Brandon wins immunity and the pizza reward. Jeff allows Brandon to pick one other person to share in the reward. Brandon picks Rick, much to the disappointment of the others. As Coach walks back to camp, he says, “I believe in divine intervention. It was not Brandon’s time to go home tonight. He saved his own skin by winning immunity.”

PIZZA & BIG MOVES
Back at the Te Tuna camp, Brandon and Rick are delighted when they see a jet ski pull up to their beach delivering their pizzas, garlic breads and drinks. Sophie is not happy that Brandon won immunity, because he was supposed to be the one voted out tonight. She says, “I feel like the way to go right now is Albert.” Sophie checks in with Coach and he agrees to vote for Albert. They are both getting annoyed with Albert and his attempts to break up their alliance. Brandon and Rick sit apart from Coach, Albert and Sophie while enjoying their pizza. Sophie decides she wants to smell their pizza and walks over to them. Albert immediately suspects that Sophie just wants to talk to Brandon and Rick about the vote tonight and this makes him nervous. Albert’s suspicions are correct. Sophie tells Brandon and Rick that she is voting for Albert. Rick says that he is too and tells Sophie and Brandon how Albert promised to take him to the end. Brandon says, “You got a lot of people that don’t know how to tell the truth and I’m speaking specifically towards Albert. I don’t know if I can believe him anymore.” Brandon goes and talks to Albert about him promising to take Rick to the final three, which wasn’t part of their plan. Albert tries to assure him that it is still Brandon, Coach and Albert to the end. Rick and Sophie join the discussion and confront Albert with the fact that he has promised them all final three. Albert gets in a heated debate with Rick who is especially offended when Albert says that Rick is lying about going to the final three with him. Sophie watches the argument and is happy to see Albert’s lies being exposed. She says, “Now instead of a nice little blindside, he gets to go out looking even more pathetic than he’s looked this whole game.” After all the futile attempts at trying to defend himself, Albert feels very vulnerable. He admits, “I got a heck of a lot of damage control to do, if I want to have a prayer at escaping tonight’s vote.” Albert decides to try and get Brandon back on his side. Albert tries to reassure Brandon that no matter what he has said to others, that he is still loyal to Brandon. Brandon admits, “Who am I not to forgive? I am an imperfect person.” So Brandon tells Albert that he will not vote for him and he is even willing to give him his immunity necklace to protect him tonight. Next, Brandon breaks the news to Coach. He tells Coach that he is going to vote for Sophie and give Albert his immunity necklace. He encourages Coach to do the same and therefore forgive Albert for his sins. Coach struggles with his decision on whom to vote for, so he tells Brandon that he needs to pray about it. He promises Brandon that he will do whatever God tells him to do. Coach reveals, “I prayed and there was a name in my head over and over and over again.” As they head out to Tribal Council, Coach admits, “My soul has never grieved like it does in this moment.”

TRIBAL COUNCIL
Brandon announces right at the beginning of Tribal Council that he is going to give up his immunity necklace to Albert. This surprises Jeff, the jury and Coach, Sophie and Rick. Brandon explains that he wants to honor his commitments. He says, “I had a lot of time to pray with Albert and I knew that if I didn’t give him the immunity tonight, then he was going to Redemption.” Brandon goes on to explain that when he was younger and part of a gang, he was often called crazy or “loco” for being so loyal when others weren’t. He hopes that his tribe mates will stay loyal to him now. Jeff reminds him that he is in a game competing for a million dollars. Albert admits that he has a real and spiritual bond with Brandon and Coach, which is stronger than his bond with Rick and Sophie. Albert says that he would give Brandon back the immunity necklace, if he felt Brandon were in danger tonight. Sophie rolls her eyes. Rick admits that he feels vulnerable, since Albert has the necklace and someone else has the hidden immunity idol, so only three of them can be voted out tonight. Coach winces because Rick has just exposed the fact that he has the idol to others. The remaining Te Tuna members all knew that Coach had the idol, but not everyone in the jury did. Rick apologizes to Coach for exposing the idol. Coach says, “It’s okay, it’s better safe than sorry at this point.” Brandon realizes that he might not be safe tonight. He tells Jeff that it is up to Albert if he wants to give him the necklace back tonight. Albert tries to assure Brandon that he and Coach are on his side. Albert says, “Honestly, I don’t think he’s going home tonight, so I’m not giving him the necklace back.” Coach reveals that he has prayed about what to do tonight and therefore is at peace. Brandon does not feel at peace. The votes are then cast. Brandon and Albert vote for Sophie, while everyone else votes for Brandon. As Brandon goes to pick up his torch and take it to Jeff, Coach hugs him and says, “It’s God’s will. Go win redemption.” So, Brandon Hantz, the 19 year-old nephew of Russell Hantz, from Katy, TX, becomes the fourteenth person voted out of SURVIVOR: SOUTH PACIFIC and sent to Redemption Island.