When we rejoined our merry band of castaways, Psycho Russell had become aware that Betsy doesn't trust him, based on her not voting as he commanded at the last Tribal Council. Betsy makes for an odd cop. You'd think she'd know better than to tip her hand to her enemy. She's like the Noel Neill version of Lois Lane on the old 1950s TV show The Adventures of Superman who, whenever she found out someone was a crook, would announce to their face, "Why , you're a criminal! I'm going to write a story about you in The Daily Planet!" and then looked shocked when the crooks pulled a gun on her.
(Of course the crooks, even though they knew she was a pal of Superman, would never just shoot her, but would tie her up next to a bundle of dynamite with a mile-long fuse, and then, before lighting the fuse, phone up Clark Kent and tell him, "Just wanted you to know, I'm blowing up your pal, Miss Lane, out in the old deserted shack located at 666 West Old Unused Dirt Road. Take the Old Abandoned Quarry turn-off. She's got maybe three hours left to live. Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!")
It turns out Russell had a waxed chest, as the stubbly chest hair already growing back across his pecs now shows. Damn it. Between his stubbly pecs, his prodigious strength, and that huge log lolling about in his shorts whenever he walks, he's actually kind of sexy, in a depraved backwoods psycho-perv way. He's so repellant, I hate finding him even borderline attractive.
Yasmin (a hairstylist -- though why she doesn't style her own hair better, I do not know) is not an outdoors woman. We got a sequence of her bitching and moaning about outdoorsy inconveniences, and how she hates camping. I hate camping for the exact same reasons, which is one of the many reasons I would never even consider auditioning for Survivor. Is it news to her that it involves living outdoors in primitive conditions? Has she never seen the show? Did she think she was auditioning for Big Brother?
Psycho Russell has decided he likes Jaison, which is fortunate, because I want to look at him all season. Jaison is simply beautiful.
Russell decided there was a hidden immunity idol, based on nothing. He said, "In the history of Survivor, how many people found the idol without a clue? Zero." So he thinks being clueless is an advantage? Has he looked in his shorts? Because something large is rolling around in there, and it's becoming distracting. Apparently, Russell didn't bring any underwear to Samoa.
What's really maddening is, Psycho Russell not only turned out to be right, but he succeeded in finding it. Maybe he should be the cop, because even though Betsy has a prime suspect in her sights, she has made no progress in solving The Case of the Missing Socks.
But then Psycho Russell showed the idol to Jaison. You should always keep it secret. It's useless if others know you have it. So now the most horrible man in the tribe has immunity, and gorgeous Jaison thinks he can trust the man who burned his socks. Psycho Russell hid the immunity idol in his pants, where everyone was already used to seeing large lumps swinging about. It is certainly original to hide it disguised as a third testicle.
At least Old Fat Mike is wearing a shirt now. Said Mike of the upcoming challenge, "This is the one where I have to prove myself, show my stuff." Mike, stop showing your stuff! "I'm a mean motorscooter, and a bad go-getter man, when it comes to one-on-one stuff. I'm gonna take him downtown to Chinatown" Is all his dialogue going to be imitation film noir bad guy gibberish?
Immunity and Luxury Challenge: This was a sort of full-contact football with a basketball chaser, played in a mudpit. Now this is a challenge. No puzzle-solving, just folks in skimpy outfits attacking each other in mud. Fifteen seconds into the women's round, we had our first blurring out of exposed breasts.
After the second round, which the women had played like a pack of 'roided-up NFL linebackers, Jeff warned everyone: "You're right on that line of getting ugly." Take a closer look, Jeff. Mike is shirtless again.
The next round mixed women and men in the pit, and got even more violent, until Hillbilly Ben was pulled from the challenge for kicking black Russell. Why am I unsurprised that it's that nasty piece of work Ben, who kills for fun, who got pulled for a cheap shot of gratuitous violence? It's the first time ever in 19 seasons of Survivor that a contestant has been pulled from a challenge. Not even Richard Hatch getting naked and rubbing his junk (and on him, it is "junk") on a revolted female opponent got ejected from the game. Good thing Chima wasn't playing. (It may have been the only time in his life that Richard Hatch's junk ever touched a female.)
Then Black Russell tackled Jaison, and suddenly I didn't care about the challenge. I just wanted to watch the two of them, arms locked about each other, rolling about in the mud, preferably in homo slo-mo. That's entertainment!
After getting tackled by Eric, Mike was proving he was "a mean motorscooter, and a bad go-getter," with "bad" being the operative word, taking them "downtown to Chinatown," by strolling about the mudpit avoiding any contact or play, just trying to catch his breath and keep his pants up, as his stomach fell in loose folds over his crotch. Yeah, he's an athlete all right, although as far as I'm concerned, keeping his pants up is vastly more important than winning the challenge.
Galu won fishing gear along with immunity. Also Black Russell got to send a spy from his team to observe the other tribe at Tribal Council. He oddly chose Yasmin (whom he called Jasmin), I assume to get a break from her whining about being outdoors.
Asked how he felt over his disgrace, Ben shrugged it off, "Outlaw, baby. Whatever." He's so articulate. "No use crying over spilt milk. I'm just going to let it go." So he's unable to man up and admit he did anything wrong.
Psycho Russell was pretty openly leering at Yasmin's boobs, which are admittedly pretty leer-worthy.
Jeff also insisted on Medical checking out Mike, which pretty much announced to everyone how out-of-shape he is, basically painting a large red target on him, for anyone not noticing how useless the mean motorscooter is. (And distracting them from Ben, whose challenge-ouster may well have cost Zsa Zsa the challenge.)
Medical learned that Mike basically had no blood pressure, I think it was one-over-minus-3. Two people hauled him to his feet, and he immediately collapsed like he'd been shot. Reality was paying Mike a long-needed visit, with the message that obese men in their 60s are not up to the rigors of Survivor. He's not so much a mean motorscooter as a lame foot scooter. Forget Survivor Mike, it's Chinatown.
The doctors pulled Mike from the competition, before his delusion that he could play a game that required youth and fitness killed him. "I'm a little beat up, but those guys never got me down in the pit." Ah, yes they did, Mike. Remember when they knocked you into the mud, and all you could do was lie there, gasping for breath? Apparently being knocked down in a mud pit isn't being "gotten down in the pit," although it sure looked like it to me. "I think I showed that I can be tough when I have to be." That is exactly what you did not show! Mike's self-delusions took no hits. None of this wuss-out, acknowledging-reality stuff for Mike. I expected him next to start saying "Mission Accomplished," and "You're doing a heck of a job, Brownie."
At least I wouldn't be looking at his giant folds of naked, hairy flab any longer. Thank you, Survivor Medical Team.
And Zsa Zsa still had to go to Tribal Council and lose yet another player! In fact, for the show, it was a lucky break. With 20 contestants, if they don't have some double-eviction episodes, we'll be here until Easter, and this isn't Survivor: Easter Island.
We saw Betsy's face fall as it became obvious that Mike was being pulled, though whether this was her concern for his health, or her realization that the Oldest-Player-Target had just shifted over to her wasn't clear.
With Mike gone, the editors needed to find something else unsavory to show us. They struck repellant gold with Shambo in a bikini, underwater, spear-fishing. Well, she's an ex-Marine Sergeant. Killing stuff should be her specialty.
Shambo had bragged to the entire Galu tribe that spear fishing was her thing, and had gone off, reassuring all that she would return with enough fish to feed Cleveland. Her mouth was writing checks of purest rubber. She caught no fish, and gave up, instead just floating about on her back, like a beached walrus. Miss "People Gravitate to Me" Shambo, who wouldn't go swimming with the rest of her tribe, had no qualms about swimming about alone while the tribe mistakenly thought she was getting them fish.
Her excuse was that the water was too murky to see anything underwater to spear, but the underwater shots of her trying showed us that the water was all-too clear, given that it was showing us her in a bikini. (The show airs at 8 PM. I had just eaten.) Meanwhile, one of her other tribemates could have been using the fishing equipment to actually catch them some fish.
And then, she lost the curved mouthpiece to the snorkle, so now no one can use it. Well now I know why she's an ex-Marine. Our Marine Forces have considerably higher performance standards than what this lame blob is demonstrating. Shambo's "Good News" was that there's lots of fish out there that she was too lame to catch. That's right, her News Flash was that there are fish in the ocean. Write that down. There may be a test later.
When awarding the now-partially-ruined fishing gear to Galu, Jeff Probst had said: "If you can not catch fish with this, go home." Take the hint, Shambo, or as she will henceforth be known here, Shambles. When will Galu lose an Immunity Challenge, so Shambles can be voted out?
Apropos of nothing but a rogue insert shot, I must observe that Black Russell, who is married, a father, and an environmental attorney whose job is suing big time polluters for screwing up our environment; in other words, a really good guy who does good works in the world (Yes, he's a virtuous lawyer. They exist. Who knew?), has really exceptionally beautiful manboobs, with the Scales of Justice tattooed on his left one. He is, however, seriously losing his hair up front, although it may just be the weight of his enormous dreadlocks pulling his hair out of his scalp.
Back at Camp Zsa Zsa, Yasmin, whose job was to keep her mouth closed and listen and observe, seeking out the other tribe's weaknesses, immediately began running her mouth. "I'm here to help you guys strategize." That is exactly what she is not there to do! What is wrong with this dunderhead?
Her brilliant oratory included: "Why be matched up with people that's not matched up with the right people? Because then it's like taking candy from a baby. Who the hell wants to do that?" Psycho Russell said nothing, as his mouth was full of the Tootsie Pops he'd stolen from a band of Samoan children. All of Zsa Zsa were trying their best to maintain straight faces and not roll their eyes, listening to this dope prattle idiotic nonsense. You could see the words "This broad is a fool!" flashing across the eyes of all of them. Now I understand why Black Russell chose her to go stay with the other tribe for a couple days, so he wouldn't have to listen to her back at the Galu Camp. If I were on a tribe with her, I'd be sending her out on daily snipe hunts.
Once he'd finished the candy he'd taken from babies, Psycho Russell said, "She's full of crap." I can't stand this slimeball, but there was no arguing with the truth of that statement.
Yasmin also received a clue to where the Zsa Zsa Hidden Immunity Idol had been concealed back before Psycho Russell found it. I was looking forward to watching her waste time hunting for it, but since the clue basically just told her it was in a tree, she decided that there were too many trees to bother looking for it, so she instead spent her time lecturing strangers. And she was going to teach them how to strategize. If I'd been there, I'd have found it right away. Psycho Russell had hidden it in his already overcrowded shorts, which is certainly the second place I'd have looked, right after searching through Jaison's pants.
Then Yasmin, who is about as effective a diplomat as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, after offending the entire Zsa Zsa tribe, took Hillbilly Ben aside to give him a civics lesson on not tackling women in a game of tackle. She told him that his tackling her in this game of tackle was "very disrespectful." What world is she living on, and how did she get from her planet to Samoa? And mind you, we saw her, in the challenge, flip enormous Jaison over her shoulder onto his back. So it's okay for her to play rough with the boys but not the boys to play rough back? She wants to play Marquis of Queensberry Rules Survivor.
In any event, trying to teach Ben not to play rough with the girls is a pointless waste of time. Who the hell does she think she is? His mother? I haven't seen anyone this full of herself since Voldecoach in Survivor: Tocantins.. We should send her to the White House, so she can lecture President Obama how to get health care passed.
Hillbilly Ben's judgement on Yasmin: "Jasmin [sic] is just a piece of work. Jasmin has a big mouth [This is literally true as well as metaphorically. Her mouth is enormous!] Jasmin smells bad. She's got really poor grammar. I think Jasmin is pretty close to being a hooker." Ben, hookers who smell bad, and who, unasked, lecture people loudly and at length, go out of business quickly. But you know, if she gained 150 pounds, Tyler Perry could play her.
Ben said, "I'm the one person you just don't want to approach like that." Ben, there isn't anyone you want to approach like that. (I can't help adding that the shots of Ben in his wet bathing trunks reveal a man who is packing about half what Psycho Russell is carrying, and that's not even counting the Hidden Immunity Idol. Sorry. We all have our hobbies. Men's pants bulges are mine. Well that and vodka.)
In a great moment for racial advancement on TV, Ben said of Yasmin to Psycho Russell: "She is ghetto trash, plain and simple. She needs to go back to eatin' ketchup sandwiches and drinkin' Kool-Aid, and doing whatever else she does, and leave me alone." Ben is from Missouri. Proud of him, Missouri? Psycho Russell displayed what one commentor here last week called his "Texas Charm," by laughing at that racist shot.
Finding a new way to charm everyone, Ben got up in the dead of night, when everyone else was trying to sleep, and decided to chop wood. I know many men who are fond of pounding wood in the dead of night, but they usually don't use an ax! And if there are a bunch of strangers sleeping near them, they do their best to be quiet about it.
Ben really knows how to make friends. This man could make people sympathize with Yasmin, and she's insufferable. Tribe Zsa Zsa is so dysfunctional, that poor Galu is barely getting any screentime.
Mick, who should never wear a shirt, and is henceforth to be called MickDreamy, explained to us that, although Betsy is now the oldest, and therefore, ipso facto, the weakest (MickDreamy, she's a cop. She's probably in better shape than you are, Doc. She's not like Mike, a "Private Chef" who never came to the table still hungry.), nonetheless between how he's pissing everyone off and his getting evicted from a challenge, perhaps Hillbilly Ben is the one who needs to go. Frankly, I didn't care much what MickDreamy was saying; I just wanted to look at him.
Betsy, working the dimwit blonds in Psycho Russell's "Dumb-Ass Girl Alliance," put it this way: go with the cop or the outlaw? Has Ben been Marandized? (Actually, Betsy called herself a "police woman-motherly type." I don't know about you, but I have never found cops to be even remotely "motherly." My own mother always had my step-father do the frisking.)
Asian girl Liz, who in the first episode made it clear she did not want to be tarred with Asian stereotyping, now made it clear that she was basing her vote on ageist stereotypes. Nothing like a little hypocrisy to spice up the game.
Psycho Russell, who needed Betsy out because she's onto him, stoked the she's-too-old "thinking." The episode was edited so heavily to make it look like Betsy was doomed, that I stopped worrying about her, knowing that they often edit the show to make it look like one outcome will occur, so that when the other outcome happens, we'll be surprised.
Tribal Council: When asked by Jeff if he had any regrets for how he played the challenge, Ben told him: "First of all, you never said we were playing by your kind of sissy rules." It was clear from Jeff's expression that he was now ready to vote Ben out himself. And I'm sorry, but a big guy who tackles women, isn't he the sissy? Don't the butch men usually pick on other men? But then, to a recreational hunter like Ben, any game where you aren't allowed to shoot your opponent is a sissy game. (In fairness to Ben, something I hate to be, he got kicked out for tripping Black Russell, who is a big, buff guy himself.)
The editors, it turned out, were playing fair. Betsy was unanimously voted out. I should have guessed. I'd gotten to like her. And my liking someone is often the kiss of death on this show.
Well, at least the preview of next week showed Shambles, the self-proclaimed Miss Popularity, growing ever more alienated (look it up, Shambles) from her own tribe. If Galu can just lose the next immunity challenge, I can be rid of her. Though to be fair and unbalanced, Galu got so little screentime, Shambles barely had any time this week to annoy me.
Survivor: Samoa is already shaping up to be a memorable season. I can't wait for more.
PS. Congratulations to Julie Chenbot, who had her baby, Charlie Chenbot Moonves, barely over a week after she hosted the live Big Brother finale. That my darlings is wonderful news, no joke. Plus now she can toss out all those hideous maternity outfits she wore on the show.
To read more of Tallulah Morehead, go to The Morehead The Merrier.