Season 22: Episode 7 - It Don't Take a Smart One
Posted on Jul 14, 2011 11:30am


As Zapatera returns from Tribal Council after just voting Stephanie out, the dust is settling from the emotions that ran high tonight.   Steve asks his tribe to come together despite the differences that Sarita and David have for the sake of the tribe.  David tells Sarita, "I don't trust you, but I have no problem with you."    David voted with Stephanie tonight against Sarita.    He feels justified in what he did and says, "If it's the end of me, then so be it."  Sarita learned some things at Tribal Council tonight.  She says, "Come to find out, our gang of six did have a major hole in it.  Which, as I had suspected, David had gone over to the dark side with Stephanie."  Sarita then tries to smooth things over with David by telling him that she respects him.  David shuts her down right away.   Steve admits, "Hopefully David can be man enough and put his ego, pride and emotions aside for the bigger cause of the team."


As the morning of day 17 begins on Redemption Island, Stephanie is giving Matt a long list of foods that she likes back home.  Matt finds her endless chatter annoying.  He is ready to go to the duel and send Stephanie home.  He reveals, "I told God that I'm going to stay out here as long as he wants me to be out here and so I'm in it for the long haul."


The Ometepe morning begins with treemail inviting two members to the Redemption duel.   Phillip immediately says that he wants to go.   Rob responds by volunteering to be the second person.   Phillip admits that he doesn't trust Rob anymore, ever since he and Grant tried to hide the clue to the hidden immunity idol from him at the last reward.   Phillip sees Rob's weakness as trying to control everyone.   Phillip vents, "Nobody's controlling me."  As Rob and Phillip head out for the duel, Rob admits that he is going with Phillip, since Phillip can't go without a chaperone.   Rob says, "Phillip has a big mouth.  He likes to talk and he can't be trusted.  He's dangerous because of his stupidity."


Stephanie and Matt arrive at the Redemption Island arena to find Rob, Phillip, David and Ralph in the audience.   Jeff Probst, the host, explains the rules of the duel.  Each castaway will have their memory tested with this challenge.  Scattered in the arena are pairs of matching symbols.  Each round you will flip over two symbols.   If the two symbols match, you score a point.  First person to score five points stays alive in the game.  The loser is out for good.

Matt is the first one out on the course and flips over two skulls right off the bat.  Amazingly, Stephanie has the same beginners luck and flips over two crocodiles.  So, the score is tied at one each.   On his second time out, Matt flips over two different symbols one a calendar and the other an eagle, therefore not scoring.   Stephanie takes her turn next and flips over war clubs and fire, which do not match.  Matt takes his turn next and flips over fire and then remembers where Stephanie had flipped over her fire symbol to get a match.   He now leads two to one.    Stephanie's next round is scoreless as she flips over a warrior and a temple.    Matt scores another point on his next round by flipping over two eagles, therefore extending his lead.   He now has three to Stephanie's one.     Stephanie scores on her next round flipping, but Matt comes right back and makes a match on his next round.   The score is now four to two.   Matt only needs one more to win.    Stephanie holds on though and gets a match on her next turn to make the score four to three.   But for the fifth time in a row, Matt wins the Redemption duel and stays alive in the game, by making a match on his next round.   Before Stephanie goes home, she follows Russell's example and airs her tribe's dirty laundry.   She says that she doesn't feel Sarita deserves to stay in the game and that David should not go home and reminds Ralph how good David is at puzzles.  She then warns Rob to watch his back against both Zapatera and Matt.  Before going back to camp.  Phillip tells Matt that he is impressed with him and likens him to a Samurai warrior.    Rob knew Phillip could not keep his mouth shut.  He vents, "I'm telling you when the merge is coming, Phillip is ready to make a big move.  And by big moves, he means let's get Rob out."


As Rob and Phillip are returning from the duel, Phillip asks Rob how much of the information they learned at the duel should be told to the tribe.   Rob says to tell the tribe everything so they feel like one cohesive unit.  Rob is delighted that Phillip was willing to withhold information from the tribe.   Rob reveals, "I can just use it as ammunition.  I mean an opportunity presents itself for me to throw Phillip further under the bus."    As soon as Rob and Phillip get to the Ometepe camp, Rob tells his tribe everything about the challenge.   He makes sure to let them know that Stephanie told him that Zapatera is coming after him.     Rob reveals this to his tribe, so they will feel safe, since Zapatera is not coming after them.   As soon as Phillip leaves the group, Rob quickly tells his tribe that Phillip wanted to withhold information from them.   He then tells them that he is sure Phillip will flip if there is a merge and therefore, they have to vote out Phillip next.   Rob reveals, "With all the attention focused on Phillip and everybody using him as a punching bag, I'm free to maneuver and do what I need to do."


Over at Zapatera, David and Ralph are giving their tribe the details of what went on at the Redemption duel.  Ralph tells them that Matt is still favoring Ometepe over Zapatera.   As soon as David leaves camp, Ralph tells his tribe that David looks like he will flip and go with Ometepe too, if there is a merge.  Ralph comments about David saying, "Well, he's a lawyer and lawyers, you got to look at them that way.  They think they're a lot better than everybody else."  David returns to camp and suggests that they go fishing.  Julie, Ralph and Steve decline because the water is too muddy.  Behind David's back, Julie says, "David is bugging me."   Sarita also complains about David thinking that he is the expert on everything.  Sarita says, "He isn't savvy at the social game at all."  


As Ometepe is starting their day 18 with rice for breakfast, Phillip asks if he can have some of the crispy rice that is stuck to the bottom of the pan.   The rest of the camp tells him no because Rob likes the crispy rice, so they are saving it for him.   Phillip is annoyed and tells them that everyone should share all the rice without anyone getting special privileges.  Phillip vents, "I'm sick and tired of the fact that they act like because Boston Rob is Boston Rob, he gets deference to everything."  Phillip is fed up and ready to get rid of Rob.  As Rob returns to camp, the girls tell him about Phillip being annoyed and he just brushes it off by saying, "Oh well."  Phillip feels that if anyone should get special treatment, it should be him because he is the oldest member of the tribe and the hardest working.   


The Ometepe and Zapatera tribes arrive on their respective colored mats.  Jeff Probst, the host, explains the rules of this challenge.  Both tribes will race through a series of obstacles, working together to collect bags of balls along the way.  Once you've cleared all the obstacles, you must shoot the balls into a basket.  First tribe to get all six balls in their basket wins immunity and is safe from Tribal Council.   In addition, the winning tribe will leave via helicopter and have a picnic on top of a volcano.    Both tribes have six members, so no one sits out of the challenge.

Both tribes make it through the first obstacle, which is a large pile of hay in equal time.    The next obstacle is to get the first bag of balls, which is attached to a metal spring on top of a post.   Rob gets his bag off the spring quickly while being lifted up by his tribe, giving Ometepe the lead, while Sarita struggles with the first bag for Zapatera.     Ometepe keeps their lead through the mud crawl.   Phillip gets caught up in the rope portion of the course and Rob has to help him out, therefore making Ometepe lose a little of their lead.    Next, Rob and Dave go head to head to get the second bag of balls off the spring.   This time Dave gets the bag much faster than Rob, which puts Zapatera in the lead.     The next obstacle is a large net crawl.   Zapatera maintains their lead with only Sarita needing help through the crawl.    Meanwhile, Ometepe loses more ground with Phillip once again, needs Rob's help to get through.  Then, Dave and Rob match off again to retrieve the third and final bag of balls.   Dave gets the third bag quickly and maintains Zapatera's lead.   Unfortunately for Zapatera, they lose their lead at the final challenge of getting the balls into the net.   Ometepe comes from behind with Grant sinking balls very quickly.   Zapatera is able to sink five balls after numerous attempts, but Grant lands the sixth ball for Ometepe, therefore winning the immunity and reward.  As Zapatera leaves the field defeated, the helicopter arrives to take Ometepe to their reward.


As the helicopter lands on top of the volcano and Ometepe gets out, Rob reveals, "Definitely one of the coolest experiences I've ever had."   The tribe is so excited to have won the reward that they shout "Ometepe" from the top of the volcano.  As the tribe unpacks their picnic basket full of delicious food, Phillip admits that he too is enjoying the day.  He realizes that it is one of the first times that he feels a part of the tribe.  He says, "I find it hard not to be tribal in my thinking, community in my thinking, so right now I'm on top of the earth."   While the rest of his tribe is enjoying the feast, Rob is looks around for the clue to the hidden immunity idol.  He sees a jar of rolled up treats and takes a look inside.   He once again finds the clue and puts it in his back pocket, while the rest of the tribe enjoys the food.  Rob reveals, "It really doesn't matter what it says, because I already have the idol."  With that, he throws the clue into the volcano without the tribe seeing.


As the defeated Zapatera tribe returns to camp from their challenge, they are all very disappointed.   They have now had three loses in a row for both immunity and rewards.   They are much hungrier than Ometepe for not having had the reward food.  Mike says, "Tonight it is going to be six of them and five of us.  Not a good situation with a looming merge."    As Ralph and David are out of camp collecting wood, the other four discuss the vote for tonight.  Sarita pleads her case saying that she is just as good, if not better than David in challenges.  Sarita encourages them going to vote for David because he is a loose cannon.  She admits, "Knowing that he voted for me last time.  Knowing that he doesn't trust me at all.  It doesn't really bode well for the future."  Sarita then tracks down Ralph and asks him to vote for David too.   Ralph was impressed by David's performance in the challenge today, but he agrees with Sarita that David cannot be trusted.  Meanwhile, David admits to feeling uncomfortable about the vote tonight.  He says, "I don't know that the tribe has seen the light in terms of keeping strength."  He knows that Sarita is favored for her loyalty, but that he can offer the tribe more strength to win challenges.    With Sarita and David away from camp, Steve, Mike, Julie and Ralph discuss the vote.  Steve and Mike reveal to Ralph that they would like to keep David instead of Sarita because of his strength in challenges.  As they weigh the merits of David and Sarita, Mike admits, "It's a total catch 22 at this point.  Either we have a loyal tribe or we have a tad bit stronger tribe."   It's not an easy decision, since they would prefer not to get rid of either one.


At the start of Tribal Council, Julie tells Jeff that Zapatera feels their tribe is stronger than Ometepe.  Jeff asks David if the problem is not strength but tribe cohesiveness.  David admits that his tribe used to be united in their quest to vote out Russell, but now they do not have a common goal.    Meanwhile, Ometepe appears to be close and very friendly towards one another.   Steve objects and says that he does feel that his tribe gets along together.   He points out the Stephanie and Krista were voted out because they caused dissention in the tribe.  David tells Jeff that he has a target on his back tonight, because he did not vote for Stephanie, but he promised her that he would not vote for her, so he was really being loyal.   Sarita doesn't see David's vote as showing loyalty, because it went against his alliance.   She tells Jeff that she would have never voted for David, because he was in her alliance.  David responds with saying that his vote was for a greater good, which was for the strength of the tribe.   With that, the tribe votes.   With five of the six votes going against her, Sarita White, the 36 year-old visual effects producer from Santa Monica, Calif., becomes the seventh person sent to Redemption Island on SURVIVOR:  REDEMPTION ISLAND.