Season 17: Episode 4 - It Was Like Christmas Morning
Posted on Jul 14, 2011 11:30am

In a surprising twist, the tribes switched. The new Fang, consisting of Ace, Jacquie, Kelly, Ken, GC, Crystal and Matty, lost badly in the immunity challenge, and found themselves once again faced with the task of voting someone out. With former Kota members Ace, Jacquie and Kelly now in their tribe, the four original Fang members started to strategize. They hypothesized that Sugar, who would be joining their tribe after Tribal Council, would be most likely to share the hidden immunity idol with her allies Ace and Jacquie if she had in fact discovered it in her time on Exile Island. Despite Kelly's physical weakness and Jacquie's contrasting strength, Jacquie's ties to Sugar posed too great a threat to the original Fang. As a result, it was Jacquie Berg whose torch was extinguished at Tribal Council making the 25 year-old medical saleswoman from Santa Barbara, California, the fourth person voted out of Survivor: Gabon. Her final words reflected her disappointment, "So I just got voted out of Survivor and I am so upset. Um, I kinda saw it coming and if I would've stayed in one more round, I feel like I could've made it all the way in this game, so they were probably smart in saving their own butts. But I'll be waiting for when they get kicked off."


As Kota returns from their first Tribal Council, Kelly immediately separates herself from the tribe. She is upset that she lost her only ally in the game, Paloma, and quickly targets Ace. "My strategy right now is that I want Ace off. I just don't like Ace," she comments. Meanwhile, Ace admits to his tribe that Tribal Council was the most excruciating experience for him, and targets Kelly. "I think Kelly voted for me, and she will be the next lamb to the slaughter."


The next morning, Fang is still falling apart despite winning the last two challenges. Randy continues to remind the tribe that the rice portions are running low, and suggests that they eat only one meal per day. In an effort to find an alternative solution, Susie takes Randy, Dan and Matty into the jungle to find fruit. Crystal and GC become suspicious of the four, and begin to form conspiracy theories that the four could be forming an alliance. GC assures Crystal and Ken that, despite the other four separating, they still have a tight group of three. In the jungle, Matty, Susie, Randy and Dan discuss how the other three members of the tribe tend to alienate everyone. Randy fumes, "I could tell GC that the sky is blue and he's gonna argue with me." "And Kenny, he is like Mini Me to GC," he continues. The four agree that no matter what, they should get rid of GC next, followed by Crystal and Ken. The four shake on it, and an alliance is formed. Matty comments, "I really truly feel that this alliance that we have created is gonna be solid for a while. I think that it is gonna carry me pretty far."


Both tribes arrive on their respective mats, as host Jeff Probst explains what they will be doing. Both tribes will rank each member from top to bottom according to importance in their tribe, with one being the highest ranking. Once both tribes are finished ranking each member, they will take their spot according to rank on numbered pedestals, colored red and yellow for each tribe. Jeff hands off tally boards to each tribe member and asks them to find a spot on the beach to fill them out in private.

The rankings are revealed, with Marcus being number one for Kota, followed by Ace, Bob, Charlie, Jacquie, Corinne, Sugar, and Kelly. When asked by Jeff how it feels to be the least valuable member on her tribe, Kelly responds, "It's interesting…being the last one. I've never been the last picked ever, so it's kinda different." On the number one pedestal for Fang is Matty, followed by Dan, Randy, Crystal, Ken, GC, and Susie. Crystal responds, "What the hell? I'm out there busting my butt and then they're gonna rank me number four after someone who can't even barely walk, and barely do anything and all he does is sit around and fuss and curse at everyone. I was very insulted when I saw that." Randy reacts to the rankings: "I mean this shows friendliness, this shows physicality in challenges, but it doesn't show a thing about who's hooking up with who."

In a shocking twist, Jeff reveals that they will be picking new tribes. Matty is devastated by this due to the recent forming of his foursome alliance with Randy, Dan and Susie. Jeff then tells Matty and Marcus that, because they were voted the most valuable players on their tribe, they will become captains of those same tribes and will choose their new tribemates in a schoolyard pick. Marcus steps onto a mat for Kota, while Matty steps onto a mat for Fang. Marcus picks Dan, followed by Charlie, Randy, and Corinne. Matty chooses Ace, followed by Crystal, Jacquie, and Ken. When faced with the decision to choose between GC and Susie for the new Kota Tribe, Randy convinces them to choose Susie. In a surprising move, Ken chooses Kelly, who was ranked last by her tribe to join the new Fang. Susie picks Bob to join the new Kota Tribe, while Kelly chooses GC. Since Sugar was not picked by any tribe and is the last person left, Jeff reveals that she will go to Exile Island and will remain there until after the next Tribal Council. She will then join the tribe that loses a member, evening the tribes up at seven-seven. Jeff then tosses out new tribe buffs to the new Kota and Fang tribes and dismisses them back to their camps.


The new Kota Tribe returns to their camp, with Randy paranoid of the original Kota members voting off one of the old Fang members if they lose an immunity challenge. "If it's not me, I'll go along with it. If it is me, I'll burn the camp down," says Randy. Randy, Susie, and Dan become aware that the Kota Tribe is well put together, with Bob as the tribe worker. Susie picks up on this, and decides to use that as her strategy: "My strategy right now at Kota is to just keep working hard at camp, and I'm hoping that they see that as a positive and say 'She's worth keeping.'"


Upon arriving at Exile Island, Sugar chooses comfort over the clue since she already found the hidden immunity idol the last time she was sent. She then indulges herself in a great abundance of fruit and goes for a swim in the lake. Sugar ponders, "This game is so crazy 'cause I don't know what team I am going to be on when I get back. I'm hoping that I go back to Fang so that I can be with Ace, and hopefully they'll vote off Kelly and then I can come take her spot. I'm sure they will. They're not idiots."


Kelly, Jacquie and Ace arrive at the new Fang camp, taking note of the differences between the two camps. Ace immediately helps boost the old Fang members' spirits when he teaches them how to find ginger to improve the flavor of the rice. Kelly makes it known to Jacquie that she felt like an outcast at her old tribe, which gets the attention of the original Fang members. "She felt like she needed to belong somewhere and maybe she really does belong with Fang," Crystal observes. Crystal relays this information to Ken, pointing out that Kelly might prove to be a great asset since she clearly does not like Ace or Jacquie. They then approach Kelly, who reveals Ace's alliance with Sugar and Jacquie. She makes it clear that she is on board with the original Fang members because she has no outside alliances with her former tribe members. Ken reveals, "When I saw Kelly on that mat and she was the last one picked, I knew I could sway her to my side because she did not get along with Kota."


Susie returns to the Kota camp with treemail, which is accompanied with lacrosse sticks. The tribe begins to practice with them as they prepare for the upcoming immunity challenge. With the threat of facing another Tribal Council if they were to lose this next challenge, Marcus points out that the two oldest former Fang members, Randy and Susie, should be the next to go. He says that it is a toss-up of which one to get rid of first since Susie has been doing a lot of work around camp and Randy has the potential to perform well in challenges. Randy assures the tribe of his allegiance, "I will do my best despite hating each and every one of you."


Both tribes stand on their mats as host Jeff Probst explains the rules. Each tribe member will have a raft and a paddle. On "Go," Jeff will toss a ball into the water. Tribe members will race to gain possession of the ball. Using their paddles, they will pass the ball from one tribe member to another until they are close enough to toss the ball into the opposing tribe's goal, scoring one point for their tribe. The first tribe to score three goals wins immunity.

The first round begins with both tribes struggling to maneuver the rafts. Jacquie steps up with the ball, but it is deflected by Marcus, who maintains control of the ball. No one on the Fang Tribe makes a move to attack Marcus. Crystal, Kelly and Ken are barely moving as Marcus passes the ball to Randy. No one on the Fang Tribe is guarding Randy as he tosses the ball past Ace and into the goal, scoring one point for the Kota Tribe.

In the second round, Fang is equally useless. Ace tries to use his hands to paddle in the water faster, but it is too late. Marcus maintains possession of the ball once again, taking his time past each of the struggling Fang members. Crystal yells to Kelly to deflect the ball away from Marcus, but she does nothing. Marcus passes the ball again to Randy, who tosses the ball into the goal, scoring the second point for Kota.

With Kota leading 2-0, the final round begins with Marcus getting to the ball first. Ace comes close to gaining possession of the ball, but loses it, allowing Marcus to toss the ball a long way down the course between Ken and Crystal. Marcus is able to make his way past Ken and Crystal, who are virtually not moving or making any effort at all to gain possession of the ball. Marcus tosses the ball past the two of them to Randy, who attempts to score another point, but is just short. Dan, near the goal, attempts to complete the task, but is blocked by Matty and falls out of his raft. Randy makes his way to the goal, and slams the ball past Matty and into the goal, scoring the third point and winning immunity for Kota.


Defeated once again, Fang returns to camp recounting the mishaps of their latest immunity challenge. "Kenny, you sucked out there," says GC. Kenny defends himself, claiming that he does not know how to paddle. Matty praises Jacquie for her performance, to which she replies, "It's hard to play defense in that game." Kelly snottily lashes back at her, saying, "Should-a, could-a, would-a…over it." GC tries to convince Ken and Crystal to vote out Kelly due to her poor performance in the challenge. They hesitantly agree, but change their minds when they realize that Sugar will be joining their tribe and is very close to both Ace and Jacquie, making the threesome a threat if Sugar holds the hidden immunity idol. The paranoid members of the original Fang tribe believe that Sugar may have found the immunity idol. By voting out Kelly, they would be risking the chance that Sugar would give the idol to either Ace or Jacquie, thus making them a major threat. Matty joins the group, and is told that Jacquie is on the chopping block instead of Kelly. Alarmed by this, Matty immediately brings this information to Jacquie, who becomes distraught. She then goes around to each Fang member, begging them to keep her in the game and vote out Kelly. She reasons that it would be better for the tribe to keep her as she has more physical strength than Kelly. Jacquie, grasping at straws, even goes as far as offering to be the fourth person in Crystal, GC and Ken's alliance.


At Tribal Council, Matty agrees that they must keep their tribe as strong as possible. Kelly defends herself by stating that she was not the only tribe member who performed poorly in the challenge, and puts the spotlight on Crystal's terrible performance. Crystal retorts, "I tried to move that rowboat as fast and as best as I could, but it wasn't moving. I just wasn't participating as much as I normally do." Ace and Jacquie admit that they do not feel safe despite being physically strong players. In the end, the former Fang members stick together, and vote out Jacquie. With five out of the seven votes cast against her, Jacquie Berg, the 25 year-old medical saleswoman from Santa Barbara, California, becomes the fourth person voted out of SURVIVOR: GABON: EARTH'S LAST EDEN.