"This way, ladies and gentlemen, this way. Right up on this platform, the World's Greatest Novelty: the Pronkwonk Twins, Elwood and Brentwood... Ladies and gentlemen, Brentwood, he is the smallest giant in the world, whilst his brother Elwood, is the largest midget in the world. They baffle science."
- Larson E. Whipsnade (W.C. Fields), You Can't Cheat an Honest Man.
I've been complaining for a few weeks now that this season of Survivor has been tortuously dull after the crackling first three episodes. Well this week it bounced back with actions and twists so bizarre that, in the words of my idol and old drinking buddy W.C. Fields: "They baffle science!"
Twice-Shoeless Dan started the episode off by expressing his admiration for and identification with John Gotti. Does he realize that John Gotti is a mass-murdering scumball whom all decent people despise? Who are his other heroes? Al Capone? Joseph Stalin? Caligula? Sauron? And he was likening his not yet getting voted out with Gotti being the "Teflon Don" against whom, no charges could stick. Hello? Where is Gotti now? Where he belongs: in a cemetery, buried like his many victims. You want to admire someone, Dan? How about the late Christopher Reeve, or Eleanor Roosevelt, or Mother Theresa or Gavin Newsom or W.C. Fields?
And then there was pretty-but-not-too-bright Chase lining up Alina as his next victim, rather than Dan, because Alina is strong. He wants to keep Dan because he's no threat, and to keep NaOnka, aka The Bride of Satan, because he trusts her. Dan will cost him challenges, since he's of less use than a lump of mud, and Satan's Bride is an evil cow of whom Adolf Hitler once said: "She's excessively unpleasant. She scares me."
Satan's Bride was also afraid of Alina, because she's smart. Well, intelligence would frighten Satan's Bride, as it is so alien to her. "She has these eyes that can just see straight through you," whispered The Evil One, confusing Alina with Supergirl. Yes, she's capable of looking at Satan's Bride and seeing that she's revolting, something that Chase has missed. "So we need to get Alina out next." No, Satan's Bride, they need to get you out next. And not by voting you out. Satan's Bride needs to have a wooden stake pounded through her chest (can't pound it through her heart; she has none), and then to be buried at a crossroads, and have the ground sown with salt. If they can't find a wooden stake, I'm okay with burying her alive.
When The Floor Tribe got back to camp, Marty and Jill wanted to know why they had been left out of the loop about voting out Kelly One-Leg, and Marty didn't understand why he had gotten votes at all. For a mastermind manipulator, he seems to have missed the obvious answer: they wanted him to play the idol and be rid of it, and they don't like him. He seems unaware that it's Creepy Sash calling the shots on The Floor, not himself.
Marty modestly praised himself for his own "big cajones" for not playing the Immunity Idol. He's right; it takes big cajones to sit around on national TV telling America what big cajones you have. Man, I'm an egotistical jerk is not something most people want to tell the entire country.
Marty is also upset about Jane voting for him, "turning on me" as he put it. He's so smart, yet he's missed entirely that Jane loathes him. If Marty is going to be the master manipulator here that he was on the old Antique Tribe, he needs to get a clue.
Marty confronted Jane, and did an inept job of it. He still referred to she and himself as "us" as though she was allied with him, though she's never been allied with him, and hates him, and when he said he thought she voted for him, she just laughed, but didn't deny it. He never actually asked her why she voted for him, and still hasn't figured out that she's out to get him. Marty, you're being outsmarted by a wacky old woman. You may have big cajones, but her huge-if-out-of-commission ovaries are kicking your butt.
Punishment Challenge: Why am I calling this a "Punishment Challenge," instead of a "Reward Challenge"? We'll get to that shortly.
This was a simple challenge that involved getting wet. A goalie stands on a tiny pedestal in the middle of a pool. Players jump into the pool throwing a ball towards a large goal net, past the goalie. Since the goalie can't move more than an inch in either direction without falling off the pedestal, said goalies are at a severe disadvantage. Lots of getting soaked on what looks like a cold, sunless day. I like.
Jeff said that for the reward, the "winning" tribe would "enjoy a Nicaraguan farm experience." I'd be planning to lose the challenge for just that. Isn't a Nicaraguan Farm Experience, getting up hours before dawn, plowing a field by hand behind a mule, spending all day bent over in fields doing backbreaking manual labor, and then having whatever meager crops you've grown carried off by your Marxist president's troops in exchange for not being shot, before returning to your mud hovel for an hour's sleep before getting up to do it all over again? Thanks, I'll pass. I wouldn't want to experience a modern, highly mechanized, American farm, let alone a Nicaraguan one. I've always sung: "How ya gonna keep 'em down on the farm, after they've seen the farm?" The only "Farm Experience" I want is a roll in the hay with a muscular farm hand -- after he's showered!
Jeff described it differently, but not differently enough. He said it would involve horseback riding, which I could do without but which many enjoy, and then a big breakfast. Okay, I could see why they'd want a big breakfast, but the catch is gigantic: "A big breakfast that you will make yourselves." And by "you will make yourselves" he doesn't mean take it out of the freezer and pop it in the microwave, or toasting your own muffins in your toaster, or even opening the can of Hollandaise sauce with a manual can opener instead of an electric one for your Eggs Benedict. No.
Jeff told them that, instead of the traditional, civilized breakfast drink of a screwdriver, using only fresh-squeezed vodka of course, they were going to be forced to drink milk! (I'm not joking. Milk!) And then, to add tedium to nausea, they would have to milk the cows themselves! This is a sick idea of a reward. Some of these idiot players acted like it would be a treat to milk a cow! A treat would be "milking" Sofia Vergara. Milking a cow is a punishment.
Fabio was the goalie for The Floor, Chase for The Ceiling. This is good. The two men with the best bodies would be up on display, shirtless, like trophies.
I was right about the challenge being easy. It quickly became evident that it was harder not to score than to score. Marty managed to "miss" by hitting goalie Chase in what Jeff described as "the spot no guy wants to be hit," by which I assume he means the bank account. I put quotes around "miss," as I am by no means certain that it wasn't deliberate, what with Marty's cajones obsession and all. Besides, with the "reward" involving milking cows, I'd not only be deliberately trying to lose, but I'd be aiming for Jeff's Forbidden Spot, and see if it "milks" him.
Needless to say Twice-Shoeless Dan's "throw," well, girly-toss, was lucky to get as far as the goalie. Oh Dan, does your idol John Gotti throw like a girl too? And Dan, I don't care if you're going into the pool. Wear a shirt. Paul Newman could get away with appearing shirtless at 63, but not someone who makes Gollum look sexy.
(Wait. I just looked at Twice-Shoeless Dan's CBS online profile, and he doesn't list John Gotti as his "Inspiration in Life." He lists Ronald Reagan. John Gotti would be an improvement! I didn't like him before; now I loathe him.)
Also, the players were supposed to throw the ball as they jump into the water. Dan ran up to the edge, well, hobbled like the mummy Kharis up to the edge, stopped, tossed the ball like a little girl, and then jumped into the water. Not only was this lame beyond belief, it's also against the rules. Even if he'd gotten the ball into the net, it wouldn't have counted, as Jeff told him. So that's why The Ceiling team kept this useless zombie on their tribe; to avoid getting stuck milking cows!
And then came a moment so jaw-dropping, it could have been the last shot of a season of Lost. Fabio, in the pool on his way to the pedestal, stopped to pee in the pool, the pool all the players have to jump into. And he announced his disgusting act! Good grief, boy, were you raised by chimps? Will you start pelting people with your feces next? Do you do this when you surf? (It's one way to keep the gnarly waves just for yourself.)
Does the unsanitary, un-housebroken little idiot realize that now, even if it comes down to a Final Two of he and Satan's Bride, they'll still never vote him the money? Let's see: vote for the woman who tackled a woman with one-leg out of selfishness and meanness, or vote for the guy who peed in the pool he knew everyone was going to have to jump into? And so Satan's Bride becomes a millionairess.
"Doesn't everyone pee in the pool?" Fabio asked. This was not met with general agreement. My cats are better potty-trained than he is. Where do you find people like that? Cavemen had better hygiene. It was almost as disgusting as Dan not wearing a shirt. Despite his looks, Fabio would make a terrible pool boy. I don't even want to shoot pool with him now. Felt stains. He baffles science!
But the next person who had to leap into Fabio's Toilet was Satan's Bride, while it was still freshest, warmest, and most-concentrated. Suddenly, instead of disgusted, I wanted to, well, not kiss him, but give him a thumb's up. It was worth a moment of utter disgust to watch Satan's Bride have to jump into Fabio's fresh urine. I've wanted to see someone piss on her for weeks, and this was almost as good. It was a fitting revenge for the theft of his socks.
And this challenge is so easy that, even knowing she was jumping into an unflushed toilet, Satan's Bride still scored a point.
The Ceiling Tribe won. Why? Because they went first. This challenge was so unchallenging (except for the goalies), that whichever team went first was going to win. It was decided at the coin toss.
Unfortunately, this means Satan's Bride was on the winning team. I hate seeing her happy. Let's hope they don't get confused and try to milk her. All they'd get from her would be The Milk of Human Meaness.
Jeff: "La Flor, nice effort. Got nothing for you." Not even diapers?
Kelly Two-Legs, or I should now say Kelly Still-Here, said that milking their own milk sounded amazing. Perhaps, but she wouldn't have been milking her own milk. That would baffle science. She'd have been milking a cow. Well, she hasn't actually said anything on the program in about three weeks - or is it four? - and won't be saying anything more in this episode, so they were desperate to get her saying something, anything, even if it was something more-stupid than Fabio's belief that, hey, everyone pees in the pool. (Everyone under the age of three, that is)
Old Jane, never at a loss for a cliche, said: "The word 'quit' is not in my vocabulary." Then how could she know to say it? If this were really true, she'd have said: The word quizzel, ah, quart, ah, quiltin' bee, ah, Quixote, ah, Quenton, ah, screw it. It's not in my vocabulary, so I don't know what the damn word is.
"Long as we win challenges, that's all I care about," Old Jane continued, grinning, as though that was clever, and as though they hadn't just lost a challenge. In fact, what is she blathering about? When has she been on a winning team?
Sash was just fine with Old Jane getting up at the crack of dawn and working her butt off while he slept, to feed him. That's what old women are for, to work instead of him. It was good enough for his mother, so it's good enough for Old Jane. What a fine young man he is, and by fine, I mean creepy.
Riding a horse reminds Chase of his dead dad. Earlier in the season, seeing a rainbow reminded Chase of his dead dad. Is there anything that doesn't remind Chase of his dead dad? Oddly enough, Fabio pissing in the pool reminded me of my dead dad. But at least my dead dad had an excuse; he was dead. For that matter, milking an old cow reminds me of my dead mom. And being on a farm reminds me of why I am never on farms.
We got a milking lesson, to help when I never milk a cow ever. Twice-Shoeless Dan made a "joke," saying of the cow: "I think I went out on a date with her." I knew it was only a joke, because the cow isn't that desperate.
The farmer though omitted the most-crucial cow-milking instruction of all: how to make certain it's a cow and not a bull before you sit down and start squeezing hard whatever is hanging down below it.
Satan's Bride was not enthusiastic about milking. Quelle Surprise! Maybe if they'd had a one-legged cow, she'd have been more into manhandling it. "It's so swollen," said Satan's Bride of her cow's udder. Well dear, not every cow is as flat-chested as you are. After her turn was over, she said: "I can say that I've touched a cow's nipple." So can every man she's ever dated, but why would you want to say that? She baffles science. How often does it come up in conversation? Hands, who here has touched a cow's nipple? When you've touched Hugh Jackman's nipple, give me a call.
Old Jane decided feeding herself was more important than Feeding Lazy Sash, so when she caught a catfish while the rest of her tribe was still sleeping in, dreaming of milking cows, she snuck off alone into the woods, with only a camera crew for protection, and cooked up her fish in secret, so she could eat it all herself. How selfish of her to eat what she's caught, and not share it with the snoozing kids too indolent to help.
Meanwhile, back at the farm, there was the farmer's wife, cooking rice and eggs. Wait a minute. Jeff said the players would make their breakfast themselves. He was very clear about that. Apparently how you make breakfast in a Nicaraguan Farm Experience is to say: "Juanita, go cook my breakfast." That's how I make breakfast here, although making my breakfast is done at the wet bar, not the stove. They didn't even have to turn the milk into cheese themselves. So far, the only player I've seen actually make their own breakfast was Old Jane, and she lost the challenge. (Well actually, she sat it out, but her tribe lost.) Anyway, everyone was glad that Fabio wasn't there to piss in the milk.
Alina was emotionally overwhelmed by having actual food again after over two weeks, and started crying a bit, prompting a hug from Crazy Holly, and spiteful hatred from Satan's Bride. The Evil One was sure Alina was faking her emotions. After all, the only emotions Satan's Bride can feel are spite, hatred, envy, selfishness, and anger. Someone having a positive emotion must seem faked to her because she doesn't believe people aren't all as disgusting as she is. I've seen wolverines that were nicer creatures than this pile of talking excrement.
Immunity Challenge: At last, a two-challenge episode again. What's the prize this time? A chance to break rocks on a chain gang? Nope. Just plain old Tribal Immunity.
This time it was rolling cannon balls (from rather small cannons, if you ask me. I hate a man with a small cannon.) down chutes which their tribemates try to maneuver via ropes to smash their opponents' colored tiles.
We've gone a long time now without any puzzle-solving in the challenges. Has Mark "Palin's Pimp" Burnett finally learned his lesson? Well, maybe this lesson. He's still putting on the air next month his Alaskan Wildlife and Nature "Reality" show starring Sarah Palin, who thinks wildlife exists for her to shoot from helicopters, and Nature exists for her to rape and despoil. She baffles science! (Do not watch this show!) And he still has The Apprentice on the air with the vile Donald Trump, although it is getting murdered, having slumped to its lowest ratings ever. Someone must have leapt over Trump, because that wretched show has jumped the shark.
Someone on The Floor Tribe had to sit the challenge out. Predictably, Lazy Sash sat out.
So, would Fabio lubricate his team's chute by sharing his favorite bodily fluid? At least I understand now why he's on the team with the yellow buffs. They started out as white buffs.
They had two sizes of cannon balls, which prompted Benry to chant: "We got little balls," an odd thing to brag about, but it makes him easy to tell apart from Marty.
The Ceiling won this one also. "I should be a pirate," said Benry, who apparently thinks pirates rolled their cannon balls down chutes towards the ships they were pillaging. I guess he's never seen any of Johnny Depp's pirate movies. Pirates hijack ships using ghosts, and by acting drunk and effeminate.
(By the way, it seems Disney is considering editing Keith Richards out of Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End because he admits taking drugs in his new memoir, like we never knew he did that before he wrote about it. I'm so shocked. Next they'll be telling me that the late, great Tony Curtis fooled around with a lot of ladies in addition to his small platoon of wives. So, when are they going to edit Lindsey Lohan out of The Parent Trap and her Love Bug movie?)
So once again, there is no chance of losing Twice-Shoeless Dan or Satan's Bride. Yes Old Jane, the important thing is that your tribe keep winning, or at least, start winning.
Old Jane is still gunning for her former Antiques tribemates Jill and Marty, not for the man who pees in the pool. (And who knows where else? The cove Jane wades in to fish, and that they all bathe in? Their food pot? Their shelter? Jane's left ear because he likes seeing it shoot out of her right ear? The only reason the dopey boy isn't writing his name in the sand, so to speak, is it would require him to be able to write. He baffles sanitation.)
Speaking of The Antique Tribe, Old Jane said: "I really felt like the ugly duckling over there." Has she looked in a mirror in living memory? Okay, she looks nothing like a duckling, nor any other young animal, but she could easily be mistaken for The Ugly Old Duck. In fact, "mistaken for" is the wrong term to use. "Recognized as" would be better. I remember when I liked Old Jane, but it's an increasingly dim memory.
Sash has the sort of plan he would think was good. He'll go tell Marty that they're going to split the vote, three for him, two for Jill, so he has to play his idol, unless he gives the idol to Sash, so "it doesn't fall into the wrong person's hands," with Sash "guaranteeing" that Jill goes home. Sash's hands are the wrong person's hands. In any event, Marty would have to be a total idiot to do that. It would be a classic blunder. Sash must have Marty confused with Fabio, just because they both look better shirtless than Sash does.
Brenda likes this plan, but she's more honest, admitting the plan is, get Marty to give them the idol saying he's safe, and then vote him out. The plan still hinges on Marty having been born yesterday, and I saw him on TV a month ago.
Sash opened his offer to Marty with: "What they're saying is..." like this wasn't his plan that he sold to the others. Sash did add another tweak to the "deal", or I should say, "swindle": "I'll look you in the eye and shake your hand," Sash said, like that meant anything at all, and he'd promise to give him back the idol later. The only remote suspense here was would Marty be so excruciatingly stupid as to fall for this.
And then came the twist to end all twists: Marty gave Sash the idol! MORON! FOOL!! IMBECILE!!!
Marty, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I need to unload. I'm letting it go, today only, cheap. How could anyone be so stupid? Goodbye Marty. It was nice looking at you, but what a fool. How does he feed himself or tie his shoes? He baffles science.
"I would rather give it to Sash because, maybe, if he lives up to his word, I would maybe live one more cycle." On the other hand, if you gave it to Jeff at Council, you would definitely live one more cycle. Sash living up to his word is roughly about as likely as the sun rising in the west tomorrow. I would rather give it to Sash because, maybe, if I learn how to fly unaided, I could be Superman.
A few seasons back, an idiot allowed himself to be talked into giving away his immunity idol, and he was voted out 30 seconds later. It's now famous as the stupidest move in Survivor history, but that player had an excuse, he was about three years old, and dumber than Fabio. What is Marty's excuse? This isn't pissing in the pool; this is pissing on yourself.
Tribal Council: Not that there is any point to Council, we might just as well get right to voting Marty out.
Jeff: "Fabio, back to back losses, reward and immunity. Does Esparda have momentum?" (Not the first thing I'd have asked Fabio that night.)
Fabio: "Yeah." I agree. It's a downward momentum, accelerating at 32 feet per second per second.
Marty tried charming Jane's vote away by calling her a flip-flopper, and bringing up his more reasoned and loyal (and stupid) approach, the one that's going to get him evicted shortly, while Jane is sitting pretty. Well, sitting safe. Pretty is a distant memory for her, if she ever was at all.
When Sash told Jeff that the idol was in his pocket, you could see Jeff was amazed. In 21 seasons of Survivor he has very seldom seen a strategic movie that imbecilic. It baffles Probst!
Marty: "It could go down as one of the stupidest moves ever, or maybe not." Yes, if Sash's intentions are to help Marty win, it's a genius move. If, on the other hand, Sash wants to go home with a million dollars in his pocket, it's brainless beyond belief.
Brenda and Fabio both carried on as though it was a Community Idol that they all owned. Jeff called Sash on it, asking Sash if he'd like to give it to, say, Brenda. Sash said he would if the group decided to after council. Yes, and then he'd like to donate his liver while he is still alive. Brenda didn't look too pleased to learn that Sash wouldn't just pass "their" idol over to her right then. After all, she was the one insisting explicitly that they betray their promise to Marty.
But it's not going to save Marty the World's Smartest Moron.
Sash: "If there's a time when I lose trust in them ... Um, I'm sorry. If there's a time when they lose trust in me..." Way too late, Sash. Jeff was all over that inadvertent moment of honesty like Crazy on Glen Beck, and began fomenting paranoia with it, prompting an even bigger surprise: Fabio admitting he knew who Freud was. It baffled me!
As Marty cast his vote for Jane, he said: "this game ain't over yet." It is for you, dimwit.
Except it wasn't! After four hopelessly dull episodes in a row, this episode will go down as containing more shocks than half a season of Lost: Fabio pissing in the pool, and announcing it, Marty handing over his idol to Sash, and finally, Sash not betraying him, and Jill getting voted out. Sash, "Stab-him-in-the-back" Brenda, and "I'm here, honest I am" Kelly all voted for Jill. Un-freaking-believable! Frankly, I think the tribe not betraying Marty is almost, not quite, but almost, a dumber move than Marty giving up the idol in the first place. Astounding. It baffles science!
Jeff: "Well it's clear from the vote that this group is making decisions based on loyalty." Frankly, to me it seemed more like they were making decisions based on there being LSD in their water along with Fabio Wine. I have never seen counter-intuitive playing at this level ever before. Marty's big cajones make a big target, but they missed them yet again. Hobble aside, Twice-Shoeless Dan; Marty is the real Teflon Don.
The previews of next week showed the merge happening, which is even better news for Marty, though he'll never see that idol again, a chest full of food being given to the merged tribe, and Satan's Bride again proving herself to be Street Trash's Street Trash, by robbing the chest, and hoarding the food intended for everyone just for herself. Still trust her, Chase? Will this please be the act that finally rids us of this evil bitch? We'll see next week, as we recover from whatever gains the Teabaggers may make in really, really stupid states next Tuesday. If we here in California can at least send Carla Fiorini and Meg Whitman to the trash bin of history, I'll even be willing to tolerate another week of Satan's Bride.
Remember to get out and vote next Tuesday, and not for teabaggers! Cheers darlings.
Follow Tallulah Morehead on Twitter: www.twitter.com/@DouglasMcEwan