Season 25: Episode 5 - "Got My Swag Back"
Posted on Oct 18, 2012 12:00am

On night 10, Malcolm and Denise return to Matsing's camp after having just voted Russell out of the game at Tribal Council. They are the only two left in the tribe. Malcolm and Denise get ready for bed on a bitterly cold night. They discuss whether they will be separated and put on the other two tribes or if their tribe of two will continue to compete against the others. Malcolm comments, "Two against twelve, the odds are long but I wouldn't count us out just yet."

The next morning at Matsing, Malcolm and Denise wake up to rain and mosquitoes. Having won no rewards, the pair continues to comment about poor camp morale.. Later, Denise reads tree mail, which announces a reward challenge. Malcolm admits, "Seems like a good time for some sort of tribe mix up or swap or to just be absorbed." Keeping that in mind, Malcolm and Denise seize this final opportunity to find the hidden immunity idol in their camp. They begin turning their camp upside down, trying to find their one chance of guaranteed safety. Malcolm suggests they concentrate on things that are significant that were there before they arrived. Denise starts digging around unique trees. Malcolm suddenly grows interested in the rice basket "“ there from the start. At first pass, he and Denise inspect the basket only to find rice. Later, Malcolm gets the idea to pry open an icon from the lid successfully revealing the hidden immunity idol. Malcolm revels exclaiming, "This is huge! We have no safety net going forward except each other against twelve other people and now I have this as leverage." Denise and Malcolm celebrate the idol discovery, but Denise can't help but exude slight worry, admitting , "If we're split, Malcolm's got the idol in his possession and I'm on my own."

The Kalabaw, Matsing and Tandang tribes arrive on their mats. Jeff Probst, the host, tells Malcolm and Denise to drop their buffs because the Matsing tribe is no more and they will instead join the Kalabaw or Tandang tribes. He then has Malcolm and Denise each pick one of two buffs, wrapped to conceal their color. Malcolm unwraps a yellow buff and joins the Tandang tribe while Denise unwraps a red buff and joins Kalabaw. Jeff then explains the rules of the first reward challenge. The tribes will square off one-on-one with each holding an idol on a pedestal. The goal is to knock their opponent's idol off the pedestal before the opposition can do the same. Each time someone knocks off an idol, he or she scores a point for their tribe. The first team to score five wins reward. The reward consists of coffee, tea, biscuits and cookies. With both tribes having seven members, no one gets to sit out for this challenge. Jeff Kent and Malcolm are the first two to compete. As Malcolm goes to hit Jeff's idol from his hand, Jeff tosses his idol up and smacks Malcolm's to the ground, with Jeff scoring the first point for Kalabaw. Tandang scores its first point in the next round, when Artis wins against Dana. Katie puts Kalabaw back in the lead when she beats Lisa. Michael ties it up again when he knocks Jonathan's idol to the ground. After four rounds, both Tandang and Kalabaw have two points each. Denise proves her worth to Kalabaw when she scores a point against RC in the next round. In the sixth round, Pete scores against Carter, tying the score at three each. In a physical match up, Abi-Maria scores against Dawson, even after Dawson pulls Abi's hair as she tries to get to her idol. Abi-Maria tells Dawson, "Don't play like a bitch." Malcolm gets the win for Tandang, beating Jeff in their second match up and getting the five points necessary to win. Tandang is elated as they carry the pastries, coffee and tea reward back to their camp. As Kalabaw walks away defeated, Jonathan reveals, "I sure would have preferred to have Malcolm on my team. We might have had the cookies and coffee, and now they have an advantage over us physically."

As Malcolm walks into the Tandang camp, he is impressed with the how nice and comfortable it is exclaiming, "I got an immunity idol this morning and a new tribe in the afternoon and I feel like I got my swag back." The tribe enjoys their pastry and coffee reward and toasts to the new Tandang tribe. He hopes to find a crack in Tandang, so he can find a way to stick around. RC sits back and watches the rest of her tribe interact with Malcolm. RC reveals, "Having this new person join and be accepted right away by the clique, it sort of does bring me back a little bit to childhood, because I was bullied in school," highlighting her discouragement in the tribe's acceptance of Malcolm. RC decides to try to woo Malcolm over to her side with a little flirting. Tandang has had trouble starting and keeping a fire going from the beginning because of all the rain in these past eleven days. Malcolm tries to start a fire and is successful right away. RC gives him a big hug and welcomes him to the tribe. Pete is also keeping in eye on Malcolm. He admits, "When I saw Malcolm unwrap that yellow buff, I was ecstatic." Pete is happy to have Malcolm's muscle join the tribe. Later, Pete takes Malcolm aside and warns him not to join forces with RC and Michael. He even reveals to Malcolm that Abi-Maria and he have the hidden immunity idol. Malcolm is delighted to have Pete give him not only the valuable information about Tandang but also the invitation to his alliance.

The Kalabaw tribe hurries to get back to their camp from the challenge, since the rain is pouring down. Jonathan welcomes Denise. Denise tells everyone she is glad to be a part of of her new tribe and is there to help out. She explains, "Whatever I can do to prove that I have value and even if it can keep me around for one more Tribal, then I can regroup." Katie is glad that Denise joined their tribe instead of Malcolm. Hoping to get Denise to join her women's alliance to swing the votes in her favor, Katie says, "From here on out, it's my job to get Denise underneath my arm." As the rain continues, the Kalabaw tribe huddles together in the shelter under the tarps to try and stay warm. Dana hasn't felt good all day and now she feels worse. She is not only cold, but also nauseated and dizzy with a sharp pain in her stomach. Eventually she grows so ill that she runs out of the shelter and vomits. Dana says, "You know back home I'm kind of supposed to be tough, but "˜um you're only as tough as your body I think will allow you to be." When Dana returns to the shelter, Dawson notices that she is burning up with a fever. Jonathan wraps her up in the tarp and tries to keep her warm. He admits, "This girl is shutting down. She needed some medical attention." Later, Jeff Probst shows up on the Kalabaw beach with the medical team reacting with surprise to learnhow much pain that Dana is experiencing. Dr. Joe examines Dana and determines that her life is not in danger, but she is in a great deal of pain. He recommends that they see if she can get better on her own in the next twelve hours. Jeff then asks Dana what she wants to do. Dana starts to cry and says, "I can't be out here sick anymore." Jeff confirms that she is pulling herself out of the game and then puts his jacket over her. Next, the Kalabaw tribe comes over to say goodbye to Dana. They all give her words of support. Dana apologizes to her tribe for leaving. Jonathan says that he knows exactly how she feels, since he too left the game for medical reasons. As Dana boards the boat to leave the game, Katie is shows her discomfort explaining, "My best ally just got taken away by the medics and I'm like, "˜What the hell am I going to do to survive?'" So, Dana Lambert, the 32 year-old cosmetologist from Winston-Salem, NC, becomes the fifth person to leave

The Kalabaw and Tandang tribes arrive on their mats. Tandang is shocked to hear that Dana is gone from the Kalabaw tribe. Jeff Probstexplains the rules of the immunity challenge. The tribes will race through a series of obstacles and then untie knots to release a drawbridge. One person will then chop a rope to release bamboo puzzle pieces. The tribe will then race to find the pieces with letters on them and use them to solve a word phrase. The first tribe to get it right wins immunity. The losing tribe goes to Tribal Council where somebody will be voted out. Abi-Maria once again sits out for the Tandang tribe, since they now have one more member than Kalabaw. The first obstacle is a slide. Both tribes make it down the slide quickly. Katie has a hard time getting through the water and net crawl obstacles, putting Kalabaw behind. Tandang is having no trouble, and is already untying the knots to release their drawbridge. Kalabaw makes up some time when they get to their drawbridge, but they are still far behind. Malcolm helps Tandang get further ahead, when he quickly chops the rope to release the puzzle pieces. Meanwhile, Jeff Kent has to have Jonathan take over midway through chopping the Kalabaw rope. Tandang maintains their big lead as they start solving the five-word puzzle. Pete and Lisa work on the puzzle, while RC acts as the advisor. They try many combinations, before Kalabaw even starts working on their puzzle. Jonathan and Dawson are the puzzle solvers for Kalabaw, while Denise is the advisor. Jonathan quickly starts putting the words together. RC helps Pete and Lisa to realize that the solution is "Live to play another day." Both tribes work quickly to put the bamboo pieces in the correct order. In the end, Tandang gets their puzzle finished a few seconds before Kalabaw and therefore wins immunity. Jonathan vents, "Now we are going to be down two people and that gap at this stage in the game may just be insurmountable."

Katie apologizes to her Kalabaw tribe for her poor performance in the challenge, as they return to camp. Katie admits, "If I was them I would say, "˜See you later Katie.'" Dawson agree with Katie that she did not do well, but she tries to reassure her that Denise will go home, since she is the newest one in the tribe. Meanwhile, Denise is out getting water with Jeff. She is so disappointed that her new tribe is also losing challenges. Denise admits, "I'm worried. I haven't had thirteen days to bond with these guys", knowing that she could be voted out if her tribe wants to stay loyal to the original members. As they are filling up the water bottles, Jeff invites Denise to join the three guys in an alliance. Denise is pleased and accepts the offer. Jeff reveals, "Right now it comes down to who is going to hold the most value in the challenges for us and Denise is stronger than Dawson and Katie." Later, Jeff tells Jonathan and Carter that Denise is on their side. The three of them discuss whether they should vote out Katie or Dawson. Katie did not do well in the challenge today, while Dawson has been the weakest link in the past. As the Kalabaw tribe waits to go to Tribal Council, Dawson starts talking about dating athletes. She comments that baseball players are not very athletic compared to football and baseball players. Dawson knows that Jeff is a retired baseball player admitting, "It's a lot of fun to make him squirm." Jeff just wants to fit in with the rest of his tribe and not be identified as a professional athlete. He reveals, "If Dawson knows my history as an athlete, the best scenario might be just to vote her out."

Denise brings her already lit torch to Tribal Council (a carryover from her oldMatsing days), but the rest of Kalabaw lights their newly acquired torches, since this is their first Tribal Council. Jeff Probst reminds them that when their fire is out, they will be gone too, since fire represents life in this game. Dawson admits, "Dana leaving hit us harder than the rain every could." Jonathan agrees and comments that they would have won the challenge today if Dana was not sick and still part of their tribe. After tonight, they will have two fewer members than the Tandang tribe. Katie admits to doing poorly in today's challenge and says, "I feel like the biggest idiot in the world." She hopes that her tribe judges her by her performance in other challenges and not this one. Dawson praises Denise for her contribution to the Kalabaw tribe. Jeff asks Dawson what contribution she makes to the tribe. She replies, "I try to keep the spirit of the camp up." Jeff Kent lists three things on which he is basing his voted tonight: work around camp, loyalty and value at challenges. The Kalabaw tribe then votes. Jeff reveals the first five votes, which are one vote for Denise and four votes for Dawson. Just after Jeff Probst snuffs her torch, Dawson gives him a hug and a kiss on the cheek before departing. Sarah Dawson, the 28 year-old insurance salesperson from Silver Spring, MD, becomes the sixth person to leave SURVIVOR: PHILIPPINES.