Season 35: Episode 14 - Million Dollar Night
Posted on Dec 21, 2017 12:00am


It's night 36 and the Solewa tribe returns to camp after Tribal Council. Ben surprised everyone when he played a hidden immunity idol at Tribal Council and voted Ashley out of game. Mike is happy to still be in the game. While the others discuss the vote, Ben heads out of camp. Devon, Chrissy, Ryan and Mike wonder if he is going to look for yet another idol. None of them think that another idol exists, so they let Ben go without any worry. Chrissy is pleased that Ben no longer has an idol and that Ashley is out of the game. She comments, "Now I'm in a group of five where four people have the exact same target: Ben." Chrissy, Devon, Ryan and Mike agree to make sure Ben does not win at the next Immunity Challenge, since their plan is to vote him out at the next Tribal Council. Mike feels Ben is very dangerous. He comments, "Ben's playing because he feels this need to win this money for his family, which makes him ferocious." Mike, Devon, Ryan and Chrissy go to bed, so they can be rested and ready for the next day. Meanwhile, Ben is out searching for another hidden immunity idol. He knows that he will get voted out, if he does not have immunity. Ben is hopeful that another idol has been hidden. He is amazed that the others are sleeping and not following him or looking for themselves. Ben admits, "I'm out here for my family. So, there ain't no time for sleeping or rest. This is more than a game to me, you know this is a mission." All night, Ben searches for a hidden immunity idol. Just as the sun is coming up, Ben sits down on the raft that on the beach to take a rest. He is tired and so disappointed that he has not found an idol yet. Just then, he sees the DIG X symbol on the back of the raft. Ben can't believe that he has once again found an idol that will save him. He remarks, "This idol guarantees me a spot in the final four." Ben looks forward to surprising the others at the next Tribal Council, when they once again try to vote him out.


Chrissy, Devon, Mike and Ryan are finally waking up. Devon starts a fire and gets breakfast going. Chrissy joins Ben down at the beach away from the others. She asks him if they can be friends again. He is fine with that and gives her a hug. Chrissy reveals, "Honestly, it is only for game play at this point." She still doesn't trust Ben, but she needs him on her side, in case he wins the next Immunity Challenge. As they are gathering wood together, Chrissy asks Ben to consider taking her to the final three, so that he would be competing against the best and not the easiest to win. Ben comments, "I'm not stupid!" He knows what Chrissy is trying to do and he wants no part of it. Ben asks Chrissy if she will take him to the end, if she wins immunity today. Chrissy doesn't answer that question, but asks Ben to think about working with her more in the game. Ben reveals, "I'm going to play my idol and blindside her. That woman's gone... period."


The Solewa tribe arrives at the Immunity and Reward Challenge. Jeff Probst, the host takes back the immunity necklace from Chrissy. He then explains the rules of the challenge. They will each swim out to a platform, climb up a stack of crates and leap off the crates into the water to retrieve a set of keys. They will then cross a balance beam to retrieve a second set of keys. The keys will be used to unlock their puzzle. At the puzzle, they will maneuver colored balls to match the corresponding color on the puzzle. The first person to line their balls up with the colors on the wheel wins immunity and is guaranteed a spot in the final four. One of the losers will be voted out at Tribal Council and become the seventh member of the jury. In addition, the winner gets to enjoy a comfort food reward back at camp, which includes chicken, potatoes, wine, and cheesecake.

The challenge begins as they all jump in the water and swim to the platform. Devon is in the lead and Chrissy is last as they run up the crates and retrieve their keys. Mike is first across the balance beam with his second set of keys. Devon is right behind him. Ben and Chrissy cross the beam slowly, but get over it. Ryan can't keep his balance on the beam and keeps falling into the water. Mike, Devon, Chrissy, and Ben are now at their puzzle stations unlocking their puzzles and starting to work on them. Ryan finally gets across the beam and joins them. Now everyone is moving around the balls in their puzzle to match them with the corresponding color on the puzzle. Ben, Chrissy, and Mike are making the most progress on their puzzles. In the end, Chrissy finishes her puzzle first, which guarantees her immunity and a nice reward back at camp. She is so proud to have won her third immunity challenge. Jeff allows her to pick two people to enjoy the reward with her. Chrissy picks Mike and Devon. Ben is disappointed that he cannot get Chrissy out tonight. He comments, "I just need to figure out the best way to use this idol and make a decision on who's going to be my next target."

Chrissy, Mike, and Devon walk into the comfort reward feast and are thrilled to find that they each get a roasted chicken. Mike suggests they look for a hidden immunity idol clue, before they start eating. So, they all search each of the food items, the table, the chairs and their surroundings, but find nothing. Now they sit down and enjoy their feast. Chrissy, Devon, and Mike toast with their wine glasses to making it to the final four with Ryan, since they plan on getting rid of Ben tonight. Mike admits, "My entire game at this point is focused on getting Ben out." Chrissy wonders if Ben will play another idol tonight. Devon does not think it is possible. They are happy that Ryan is making sure Ben does not find an idol, while they are enjoying their reward. Chrissy proposes that someone wear the dead super immunity necklace that Ryan gave her on day 3 to Tribal Council tonight. Mike thinks they should either plant it for Ben to find or wear it and tell Ben they found it at the reward. Mike points out that if Ben thinks that they have found the idol, then he will not look for the real one. Chrissy and Devon like this idea. So, Chrissy retrieves her dead super immunity necklace and puts it together with the paperwork that Ryan got with the idol he found. Later, when they are all together in camp, Ben announces he is going to look for the idol. Chrissy tells him to not waste too much energy as she shows him the dead super immunity necklace and paperwork. Ben pretends to believe that it is real and acts disappointed that she found the idol instead of him. Chrissy tells Ben that she plans on giving the idol to someone tonight, since she already won immunity at the challenge. Ryan remarks, "He was shocked and that let us all know that he does not have a hidden immunity idol, which is a very good thing." Ben leaves camp to get water and starts laughing. Since, he found the real hidden immunity idol by the raft, he is confident that the one that Chrissy showed him is fake. Ben comments, "Now I don't even have to fake look for idols no more. She just made my job easier." He loves the fact that he is one step ahead of the others and just has to determine whom he wants out next. Ben reveals, "Tonight it comes down to who I can beat at the challenge tomorrow." He feels he can easily beat Ryan, but Mike and Devon are more competitive. So, Ben plans on voting out either Mike or Devon tonight. Before Tribal Council, Devon gets nervous, because Ben seems too comfortable about going home. He admits, "He many just be acting one way, so that we think he hasn't found a hidden immunity idol." Devon shares his fears with Ryan and tells him that he may vote for Mike tonight, just to be safe. Ryan assures Devon that he followed Ben all day to make sure he did not find an idol. He warns Devon that Mike will get mad at him for sending a needless vote his way and not include him in his final three. Devon admits, "I just got to pray that Ben doesn't pull off a miracle tonight."


The Solewa tribe arrives at Tribal Council. Jeff Probst brings in jury members Desi, Cole, JP, Joe, Lauren, and Ashley. Jeff asks Ryan what happened back at camp after Ben once again surprised them with an idol at the last Tribal Council. Ryan admits they were all happy to have made the final five after the chaos and confusion that occurred when Ben played his idol and Ashley was voted out. Devon confirms that Ben is a dangerous player and is considered the enemy by all. Jeff asks Chrissy why they are allowing Ben to find these idols, if he is the enemy. Chrissy admits that they are all exhausted after 37 days on SURVIVOR, which makes it difficult to keep track of Ben 24 hours a day. Mike points out that Ben is a great shield, while he is still in the game. Jeff explains to the jury that Chrissy is one away from tying the record of most immunity challenges won by a female, which is four. Chrissy puts on her dead super immunity idol over the immunity necklace that she won at the challenge. She tells Jeff that she found the hidden immunity idol from a clue at the reward. Chrissy plans on giving the idol to either Devon, Mike or Ryan tonight, since she is already safe with her immunity necklace. Ben admits he was disappointed that Chrissy had found the idol, since he needed it to keep him safe tonight. Jeff then calls for the Solewa tribe to cast their votes. After they vote, Jeff asks if anyone would like to play a hidden immunity idol. Ben once again shocks everyone when he pulls out an idol. Jeff reveals all 5 votes. Ben receives three votes, which do not count. Mike receives one vote. Devon receives one vote. So, with a tie between Mike and Devon, there is a re-vote. Mike and Devon do not vote, but Ben, Chrissy, and Ryan can now only cast votes for Mike or Devon. Jeff reveals the new votes cast. Devon receives one vote. Mike receives two votes. So, Mike Zahalsky, a 43-year old Urologist from Parkland, FL is the fourteenth person voted out of Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers and the seventh member of the jury. Jeff congratulates Ben, Chrissy, Devon, and Ryan for making it to the final four. He informs them that tomorrow they will compete in their final immunity challenge, which includes a twist.


Devon, Ben, Chrissy, and Ryan return to camp after Tribal Council. All four of them are excited to still be in the game. Devon is so happy that he decided to vote for Mike instead of Ben tonight, otherwise he would have been voted out. He admits, "I potentially did make a million dollar move right there." Ben asks Ryan if any past Survivor has successfully played three idols in a row. Ryan responds, "You were the first. You're ruining my game." With no more idols in the game, Ben knows that he has to win the final Immunity Challenge to keep himself safe. He remarks, "I do have my wife and my kids. That's what I'm thinking about and that's my driving force." Chrissy is frustrated that Ben is still in the game. She hopes that she, Devon or Ryan will win the final Immunity Challenge tomorrow, so they can finally get Ben out. Chrissy comments, "We don't know what the twist is, right. So, the twist could totally foil those plans."


The next day, the Solewa tribe arrives on their mat for their final Immunity Challenge. Jeff takes back the immunity necklace from Chrissy and explains the rules of the challenge. They will each stack letter blocks on a very wobbly platform. The first person to spell the three words: Heroes, Healers, and Hustlers wins immunity and a spot in the final Tribal Council, where they will get a chance to plead their case to the jury about why they deserve the title of Sole Survivor and the million-dollar prize. One of the losers will become the eighth and final member of the jury. He reminds them that there is a twist this season. The winner of this challenge will also receive a final secret advantage of the game.

The challenge begins. Everyone gathers a pile of letter blocks. Next, they unlock their structure with their foot, which makes it wobbly. Then they carefully place their letters on the wobbly structure, so they won't fall. Chrissy is the first one to move her structure and drop her letters. Now she has to lock her structure, pick up her fallen blocks and start again. Any blocks that did not fall are still good. Ryan has the early lead with the most blocks placed. Devon drops his blocks, when he moves his structure as he is trying to lock it back in. So, he has to replace the fallen ones. Ben is in second place. He and Ryan have both completed the word Heroes and are working on Healers. Devon and Chrissy are still trying to complete their first word without dropping letters. Ryan drops three letters, just as he completes his second word. So, Ben is now in the lead with the words Heroes and Healers complete. He is working on his final word Hustlers. Everyone else is scrambling to catch up. Ben places his last letter and locks in his structure. Unfortunately, he places the U in the word Hustlers upside down. So, he has to unlock his structure and fix it. When he does this, he jostles his structure and loses all but six blocks. This gives Ryan, Devon, and Chrissy a chance to catch up. This challenge proves to be difficult, as they all drop letters many times in the attempt to finish their three words. Jeff reminds them to never give up. In the end, Chrissy gets the job done first and wins immunity and the secret advantage. In addition, she ties the record of four for most Immunity challenges won by a female in the history of Survivor.


The Solewa tribe returns to camp after the challenge. Everyone congratulates Chrissy for the win. Ben is devastated that he did not win that final Immunity Challenge. He admits, "A million dollars was at stake today, my kids' college, and retirement. I just let it slip away and that hurts." Chrissy feels bad for Ben, because she knows how much staying in Survivor means to him. Ben asks Chrissy if there is any way that he could stay in the game and sit next to her at the final Tribal Council. Chrissy promises that she will hear Ben out at Tribal Council tonight. She admits, "Ben needs to go." Next, Chrissy gets out of camp to look at the secret advantage that she got at the challenge. She reads it and finds out that she will be the only one to cast a vote at Tribal Council and it will determine which one person will sit next to her at the final Tribal. The other two people will compete in a fire making challenge and only the winner will earn the right to go to the final Tribal. The loser will become the eighth and final member of the jury. Chrissy remarks, "This is a huge twist in the game and it means that the door is open for Ben to potentially come to the final three. That's not good." She feels that Devon has a better chance of beating Ben at the fire making challenge, so she plans on choosing Ryan to be the one to go to the final three with her. Next, she shows the secret advantage to Devon and tells him that she would like him to compete against Ben. He understands her decision and says that he is up to the challenge. Devon comments, "It's going to give me that exact oomph at the end of my game that I need to show the jury that I deserve to win the million dollars. That I'm the one that took down Ben." Next, Chrissy and Devon reveal the contents of the secret advantage to Ryan. Chrissy tells Ryan that he is the one she is choosing to go to the final three with her, so Devon and Ben will compete in the fire making challenge. Ryan thanks Chrissy for taking him. He comments, "Who knew that my inability to make fire would save me on day 38." Devon takes the machete and flint away from camp to practice making fire. As he is striking the flint, it breaks in half. Devon feels this is a sign that he should not be wasting his energy. So, he lays down to meditate on the beach instead. Devon explains, "I need to go into this Tribal Council calm, cool, and I need to believe in myself. Because I do want the million dollars for my life, for my family's life, and for everyone I care about." As the four of them are walking out to Tribal Council, Chrissy hopes that Devon will beat Ben.


The final four arrive at Tribal Council. Jeff Probst brings in jury members Desi, Cole, JP, Joe, Lauren, Ashley, and Mike. Jeff asks Chrissy how it feels to tie the Survivor record of most individual Immunity Challenges won by a female and guaranteeing herself a spot in the final Tribal Council. Chrissy admits the win was a great feeling. Ben says that an upside down "U" will forever haunt him, because it caused him to lose the Immunity Challenge. Ben is proud of his game and feels he did his best, even if his torch gets snuffed tonight. Chrissy admits that she shared her secret advantage with Devon and Ryan, but not Ben. She then reads the advantage and chooses Ryan to go with her to the final three. Ryan is thankful to make it to the final three and get a chance to plead his case to the jury. Devon is ready to beat Ben at the fire making challenge. Ben is thrilled to have the opportunity to keep himself in the game. Next, Devon and Ben take their spots at their fire making stations. They both have the exact same supplies. Their job is to make a fire that is high enough and hot enough to burn through a cord suspended over their fire making station. The first person that burns through their cord, which raises their flag earns the third seat at the final Tribal Council. The loser becomes the eighth and final member of the jury.

The challenge begins. Ben and Devon start scraping their flint over thin strands of rope. After numerous attempts by both, Ben is first to get a spark to ignite the strands. He blows on it to keep it going and adds twigs to make it bigger. Devon is desperately trying to get one of his sparks to catch. In the end, Ben wins the challenge by building his fire big enough to burn through his rope and raise his flag. Devon was never able to get his fire going. Ben has earned the third seat at the final Tribal Council. So, Devon Pinto, a 23-year old Surf Instructor from Solana Beach, CA is now the eighth and final member of the jury. Jeff congratulates Ben, Chrissy, and Ryan for making the final three. He tells them that now the power shifts to the jury to decide which one of them is deserving of the title of Sole Survivor and the million-dollar prize that goes with it.

DAY 39

Ben and Chrissy sit on the beach as the sun rises on day 39. Ben puts the final notch in the calendar on the tree. As a super fan, Ryan is so excited to still be in the game on day 39 and to be the last Hustler standing. He feels he is the underdog, but he has a plan. Ryan explains, "I need to persuade the jury that I had control the entire game. Now that's a complete lie, but I think it might work." Chrissy, Ben, and Ryan pick up baskets of food and drink to make a delicious breakfast. They begin by toasting glasses of champagne and orange juice to celebrate making it to the final three. Chrissy is proud of how far she has come in the game. In the beginning, she was terrified and even threw up at the first challenge. Now, she is a four-time winner of individual Immunity Challenges. Chrissy knows that she has fierce competition going into tonight's Tribal Council. She admits, "I would love other moms to know they should always believe in themselves and believe in their dreams, because eventually they may just come true." They enjoy an egg and sausage omelet and fruit for breakfast. After breakfast, Ben takes a walk on the beach to collect his thoughts. He comments, "I've never let off the gas. I've been full throttle 100% from day one." Ben knows that Tribal Council will not be easy, because Ryan is a good speaker and Chrissy has won four Immunity Challenges. He remarks, "At the end of the day, I need to bring a paycheck home to my wife and my two kids." Ben, Chrissy, and Ryan leave Solewa camp for the last time and head to the final Tribal Council.
Ben, Ryan, and Chrissy arrive at the final Tribal Council. Jeff Probst brings in jury members Desi, Cole, JP, Joe, Lauren, Ashley, Mike, and Devon. He reminds Chrissy, Ryan, and Ben that the jury has the power tonight, since they decide who will be the Sole Survivor and the million-dollar winner. Jeff points out that final Tribal Council is centered on the three aspects of the game, which are: outwit, outplay, and outlast. Outwit is the social part of the game. Outplay is how they dealt with the conditions put on them by the game, such as challenges, switches, and advantages. Outlast is whether they put the right people on the jury who respect their games and are willing to call them the winner. Jeff says they will begin by looking at the outwit portion of the game. Desi congratulates Ben, Chrissy, and Ryan for making it to the end. She praises Chrissy for her challenge performance and Ben for playing his idols. Desi admits to Ryan that the jury feels he was just brought to the end, because people thought they could beat him. She gives Ryan the chance to prove her wrong and talk about his social game. Ryan feels his strong social game got him to the end. He found the advantage on day 1 on the boat and used it to build a relationship with Chrissy and Devon. Ryan also says that he was the one that put together the alliance of seven that dominated the game for a while. Ashley asks him why he never talked strategy with her. Ryan points out that a lot of his relationships were filtered through Devon. Devon confirms that. Ryan admits that he did not know about the JP or Joe votes though. Joe compliments Ryan for being a puppet master for part of the game. Joe then accuses Ben and Chrissy of having poor social games. He feels they were too focused on challenges and idols, instead of building relationships with the people they eventually put on the jury. Ben admits that he yelled at Joe for bringing the Marines into the game. He acknowledges that socializing is difficult for him in and out of the game, but he is working on it. Chrissy feels that she was loyal to her alliances and that she took the time to get to know each one of the personally. Cole calls out Ben for painting him as a thief, when he only took a small amount of peanut butter. Ben admits that he aggressively targeted Cole, because he was a physical and strategic threat to him. Ashley compliments Chrissy for having genuine conversations with her tribe mates and having good social connections. Chrissy admits that getting to know them helped her figure out if she wanted to align with them in the game. Ryan feels that he was instrumental in connecting Chrissy with a lot of people. Chrissy disagrees. Desi suggests to everyone that they take a deep breath and remember that this is just a game. Jeff then changes the focus to the outplay portion of the game and how they responded to the conditions of the game. Cole feels that survival skills are very important, as are success in challenges. He is also impressed with Ben for finding and playing the idols. Cole is disappointed with Ryan for not helping around camp and trying to learn survival skills. Ryan admits that he is not good with those things and that is why he focused on his social game. Desi points out that she did not have a lot of survival experience, but she made the effort to learn it during the game, instead of avoiding it like he did. Ryan reminds everyone that he did well in finding the first advantage and in causing chaos when he found the idol under the flag without anyone knowing. Cole admits that Ryan's move did put a bigger target on his back and got him out of the game. Ashley compliments Chrissy and all the women on the jury for doing so well in the challenges this season. Chrissy admits that she was terrified of failing in the challenges, but found the courage to not give up and conquer them. Lauren also complements her for applying to Survivor for 16 years and not giving up on that. Joe appreciates how much work Ben put into finding the idols. Ben admits he had to do whatever it took to save himself in the game. Desi asks Chrissy and Ryan why they allowed Ben to go off on his own and find those idols. Ben admits that he was one step ahead of people in finding the idols. Chrissy feels that they did not do a good job of keeping track of Ben and keeping him away from idols. Jeff shifts the focus to the outlast portion of the game and gives Ben, Chrissy, and Ryan a chance to address the jury and explain why they should be the Sole Survivor. Ryan admits that he focused on his social game, since he was not good at challenges. He is proud that the social relationships that he built during the game got him safely through 13 Tribal Councils. Ryan points out that he not only had social bonds, but also found an advantage and an idol along the way. He feels he has learned a lot about himself while being on Survivor. Ben tells the jury that he got them out of the game, because they were hurdles to him getting to the end. Mike and Joe encourage him to say more. With that encouragement, Ben admits that he played this game so hard for his family and to show people with PTSD that they can overcome it. Chrissy admits that she underestimated herself coming into the game. She feels she did a great job on the challenges and in game strategy. Chrissy is proud of the connections that she made with each person in the jury. She feels she got to the end playing a good clean solid game. Chrissy feels all mothers are heroes, hustlers, and healers, because they put other people before themselves. She encourages everyone to not give up on their dreams, because she was able to make her dream of being on Survivor come true at age 47. Jeff then calls for the vote. The eight jury members cast their votes for the winner. Jeff Probst reads the votes live from Los Angeles. With four out of eight votes cast for him, Ben Driebergen wins the title of Sole Survivor and the million-dollar prize for Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers.