Season 11: Episode 9 - QUARTERBACK SNEAK: Gary Snags Immunity, Bobby Jon Gone
Posted on Jul 14, 2011 11:30am

On night 24, in an unprecedented "Hail Mary" move, Gary, the ex-professional football player, shocked his tribemates by pulling out the hidden Immunity idol the moment before the vote. With Gary suddenly immune, the tribe voted out Bobby Jon Drinkard, the 27-year-old waiter from Troy, Alabama and contestant on SURVIVOR: PALAU, making him the tenth person voted out of SURVIVOR: GUATEMALA. Shortly after being voted out of the game for a second time, Bobby Jon admitted, "I was surprised, and had no idea Gary was going to pull out that idol."


When the tribe returned form Tribal Council, Jamie was visibly upset over Bobby Jon's "no class" comments. Jamie announced, "I ain't angry; my feelings are hurt." Bobby Jon attempted to make amends, but Jamie continued, "Saying 'no class' is like saying I'm white trash." In an effort to make peace, the two alpha males shook hands. After an apology from Bobby Jon, Rafe commented, "If Jamie does not use this as an experience to learn and change from, then I am going to change up this game."


At Xhakum, Bobby Jon, Danni and Gary felt alienated and outnumbered by the alliance of six. Hoping to change their destiny, the three underdogs intensified their search for the hidden Immunity idol. Drawing on his former athletic achievements, Gary put it best, "I'm going to pull out everything I can to get as far as I can." Emphasizing the importance of finding the stone statue, Bobby Jon exclaimed, "I need that idol now!"


As the tribe convened at the Reward Challenge, host Jeff Probst explained the object of the game: use an ancient Maya weapon called and Atlatl to sling an arrow at a huge target on the ground. Each person would get only one throw. The arrow closest to the target's center wins. The Reward: a feast and clue to the location of the hidden Immunity idol. The unusual feast would have diminishing returns. From first to last place, the meals would decrease in size. Referring to the feast, Jeff hinted, "First place is steak and lobster…last place is not."

Judd was up first and his throw set the mark to beat. First through forth place positions changed with each successive toss with the Atlatl. At the end of the competition, in an uncharacteristic move, Jamie opted to trade his fourth-place finish for last place. Wanting to make amends for his recent bad behavior, Jamie explained, "We are one tribe now, and I'm sorry I didn't see that sooner." When Jeff Probst asked Rafe what he thought of Jamie's selfless act, Rafe responded, "It shows that Jamie learned a lot, and I think it is awesome."


At the Reward dinner, the tribe was treated to an unusual feast. Because Judd won, he received his clue to the hidden Immunity idol and a steak and lobster dinner. Sitting in the last-place spot at the end of the table, Jamie was served a small bowl of ramon nuts and a glass of dirty lake water. Before the eating could begin, Judd was allowed to pick two people to join him at his table for food and an open bar. After picking Bobby Jon and Stephanie to join him, the three gorged on the food and drank until their hearts and stomachs were content. Bobby Jon tried to be respectful of the others while they ate and drank, but their overindulgence did not sit well with Gary, who complained, "Two hours of watching them gorge themselves and get drunk: not my idea of fun."


When the tribe returned to camp, Judd and Bobby Jon were drunk from vodka. With alcohol clouding their judgment, they attempted to move a large tree to use as firewood. In their inebriated state, their wood-gathering turned to tree wrestling. The tree won, and Judd took a tumble down a hill.


Early in the morning, Judd could not keep the contents of the Immunity idol clue to himself and shared it with Stephanie. The clue indicated the hidden idol might be up in a tree. Stephanie noted, "Basically what it said is, it is not on the ground." In an attempt to throw everyone else off the trail of the idol, Judd tells them it is definitely on the ground. Later, Judd said, "I don't have a problem lying to the other guys at all. That's what the game is all about."


Jamie started to feel paranoid and feared he might be voted out for his previous bad behavior. Rafe began to question Jamie's motives: "I'm not sure it was out of the kindness of his heart…. I don't really think it was, so I don't trust Jamie." Later, Gary told Jamie he would vote with him at the next Tribal Council. Paranoid, Jamie believed Gary was going to vote for him, not with him. Jamie created confusion in the camp when he told the others Gary was going to vote him off. Stephanie started to see Jamie as a huge liability and a threat, noting, "He seems like a loose cannon, and he could ruin our entire plan."


The entire tribe contemplated the meaning of the Tree Mail for the upcoming Immunity Challenge. Knowing the Challenge would require dexterity and balance, Gary and Danni practiced balancing on the Maya pyramid, while Jamie continued to psych himself out. He confessed, "In this jungle, people start thinking too much. and it can all come back around on you."


When the tribe convened for the Immunity Challenge, Jeff Probst explained the rules of the game: Untie wooden planks attached to a balance beam, then use the planks to move across a rope bridge. The final round required navigating across a knotted rope bridge. Several Survivors tumbled from the balance beam and the ropes in a very close race, but in the end, Jamie reached the finish line first and took home the Immunity necklace.


Moments after arriving back at camp, Stephanie, Rafe, Judd and Jamie confirmed they were voting off Gary. The plan seemed simple, but a worried Stephenie wondered, "Why does it seem too easy? I'm getting nervous." Knowing Gary was a strong competitor, she added, "Gary is a huge physical threat, so unfortunately he just needs to go." Tensions were high around the Xhakum camp as the three remaining members of the old Yaxha tribe felt the pressure of the impending Tribal Council vote. Gary confessed, "I don't like going to Tribal Council, and I really don't want to go tonight, because it could be me."

Later, Gary approached Stephanie and asked her to tell him if they planned to vote him off. She said she would definitely tell him. Not trusting her, he asked her to look him in the eye and say it again. With a menacing glare, she confirmed she would tell him if he was the target. Bobby Jon then approached Judd and Jamie to warn them about trusting Stephanie by saying, "Watch out for the million-dollar grin." In turn, they reassured Bobby Jon that he was not the one being voted out.


Desperate to find the hidden Immunity idol, Gary went on another mission into the jungle. Sneaking through the woods, Gary discovered Judd also searching for the idol. Gary was perplexed when he noticed Judd was not looking on the ground for the statue and said, "If it is on the ground, I wonder why he is looking in the trees." When Stephanie and Rafe realize Gary was on another search for the idol moments before Tribal Council, Stephanie exclaimed, "That would be amazing if he found it!"


At Tribal Council it looked like Gary was going to be voted out. A moment before the votes were cast, he shocked the rest of the tribe when he reached into his bag and revealed the hidden Immunity idol. With Gary immune from the vote, the tribe voted out Bobby Jon Drinkard.