The bomb doors opened and a twist was dropped into the game. An unsuspecting tribe swap disguised as a double elimination forced the Samatau to show where their loyalties lied. This episode, the Asaga tribe will be faced with the tough task of dealing with the residual aftershocks.
Day 21 – Exile Beach
We meet Anneliese and Tara on Exile Beach as they try to comprehend the bombshell that was dropped at the previous night’s tribal council. Tara and Anneliese are “spewing” after they were both voted out. Tara tells us that she wants to make her kids proud and somehow relates barrel racing to Survivor. “When you’re a barrel racer you don’t breed expensive horses just to come second. You do it to win.”
Asaga Day 21 – Jumping Ship
The Asaga tribe wake up on Day 21 oblivious to the minefield they are about to walk into. Jacqui states that she is feeling comfortable with her alliance of Henry, Sarah, Kent, and Odette. Henry and Jacqui, or the “king and queen” as they refer to themselves, are still holding onto an immunity idol (well Henry is at least) and have Luke firmly in their sights. At this point, the tribe is split between the aforementioned alliance and an alliance between Michelle, Luke, Jericho, and Ben. Despite Jacqui’s confident demeanor, Luke is ready to get rid of Jacqui “as soon as [he] gets the chance.”
Soon after, Asaga meet up with Jonathan LaPaglia, and they are confronted with a decision. They must swap two of their tribe members with Tara and “the other one” (Anneliese) as Henry mentions, who were eliminated last night. To the shock and dismay of the tribe, Henry volunteers to be swapped leaving his closest ally Jacqui to be alone in Asaga. An underreported story, however, is that Ben was also quick to volunteer himself due to him knowing that he was on the bottom of the tribe. He may be invisible but rest assured there is a brain underneath that beautiful head of hair! Henry and Ben are ultimately left to swap to the Samatau tribe. The rationale behind Henry’s decision is definitely murky. Given a number of confessionals that have highlighted the massive threat Henry and Jacqui are, perhaps being separated from her might do him some good.
Samatau: Day 21 – The Clash of the Testicles
“Yoga Pants (Henry) and Sideshow Bob (Ben)” arrive at their new home and the new additions immediately threaten AK. At first glance, you’d assume that throughout all the interactions AK and Henry have had in the challenges that they would work well together. Yet, AK is afraid Henry’s “extremely smooth” exterior might break up his alliance and must, therefore, assess his game. When it’s time for them to have a conversation they both begin to quiz each other and lie through their teeth. It’s a fascinating display of two power hungry individuals trying to intimidate the other whilst not giving out too much information that could come back to bite them. Henry fails to admit that he was the kingpin at his tribe and AK lies about Samatau consisting of “minions” that will take out big threats such as Henry.
Meanwhile, Locky tries to campaign to Henry the best way he can without trying to “beg” by letting him know that AK is, in fact, the ringleader of the majority alliance. It must be really tough to be Locky. For someone who has never been on the bottom of anything in life before to finally finding himself in a situation where things aren’t going his way must be heartbreaking. He is so brave. A sympathetic figure to say the least.
Asaga: Day 21 – A Pocket Full of Hope
Back at Asaga, Jacqui is visibly shaken at Henry’s decision to abandon her at the tribe swap. As she points out, she is now left alone in her tribe with a large target on her back and no immunity idol. Soon after, Luke gets straight to work and tries to recruit Tara onto his side by immediately throwing Jacqui and Henry under the bus by saying they were running the tribe. It probably goes without saying, but Tara and Luke are clearly cut from the same cloth. On the surface, they are very similar people, so it’s not surprising that they appear to get along. With that being said, thus far Luke has not been able to execute any of the strategic plans he has been putting together. Even though Luke says that his “pockets are full” of people wanting to work with him, his pockets must have holes in them because they have never been enough to actually hold the majority. Although, now Tara and Anneliese have been thrown in the mix, his likeable and upbeat demeanor might be able to change that.
The Immunity Challenge
It’s a good old fashion game of Survivor football. Well, kind of. Each tribe must nominate four runners and one kicker. The four runners must run and retrieve a football in aims of giving it to their designated kicker. Once the kicker has the ball, they must try and kick it into a small hole to get a goal for their team. After a nail-biting rough and tumble challenge, Samatau brings out the win.
A Gut Feeling
Upon arriving back from the immunity challenge, Tara and Anneliese are quite grim on their chances of surviving tonight’s tribal council. Jacqui devises a plan to keep the original Asaga tribe strong and sends Kent out to do “the ground and the leg work” for her. It’s going like a dream! “Easy as pie” as Kent says. Sarah, Jericho, and Michelle are all down for being Asaga strong and voting out the two Samatau girls – and in record time too! But of course, it’s never that easy, not this season at least. Michelle lets Tara and Anneliese know that she feels closer to them than the likes of Jacqui. A brief shot of some crabs on the beach perfectly encapsulate the amount of scrambling headed our way.
Meanwhile, Sarah is facing the realization that she will not be able to play both sides at tribal council. Jericho is making a case for voting out Jacqui by saying “they [Henry and Jacqui] will always have an animosity towards Luke.” Sarah abruptly interrupts Jericho and confirms her vote for Jacqui by nonchalantly saying “she annoys me anyway with all her complaining.” Jacqui and Kent quickly figure out that the amount of scrambling isn’t conducive to a straight forward vote and decide to flip the vote on Sarah last minute. Heading into tribal council, Anneliese and Tara are deciding whether to vote for Jacqui or Sarah.
At tribal, Jacqui is asked about her being in a power-couple with Henry. She does her best to deflect the attention by claiming that Henry’s decision to walk away from Asaga only solidifies the idea that they were never that close to begin with. Tara and Anneliese, on the other hand, are selling their case as free agents that will display complete loyalty to their new tribe. Jericho comments that the wounds they have suffered from being voted out of Samatau will leave scars that will prevent them from wanting to work with their betrayers again. In the end, the Jacqui is voted out of the game, and we are left with some wise words from LaPaglia: “There was a lot of talk about Asaga blood tonight. But maybe it doesn’t run quite as thick as some of you think.
Jacqui was the woman of a certain age who had spunk and sass. Not only did she bring a ton of fun and great confessionals into the game, but she also was unapologetically playing the game hard. Going into the season I think it is safe to say that the expectations for Jacqui were quite low, but that is what makes her run even sweeter. Jacqui came into the game and became a loveable character who has left her mark with her witty and irreverent humour. Jacqui’s presence will definitely be missed, and it is a damn shame that she will not make it to the merge or the jury. But in the midst of Jacqui’s elimination the question must be asked heading into the episodes to come; should we blame Henry for Jacqui’s elimination? Will Henry no longer be as big of a target now Jacqui has been voted off? Should Henry have stayed and played the idol on Jacqui to weaken Luke’s side of the tribe further?
There is no doubt that Henry’s decision to go over to Samatau was a risky move and if judging by how this episode played out, it seems like a smart decision. In the end, Jacqui may no longer be in the game, but the ramifications of her exit will certainly linger in the episodes to come.
OTHER #SURVIVORAU COVERAGE on INSIDE SURVIVOR
Australian Survivor will be back next Sunday at 7.30pm AEST – and Alice Barelli will be on hand to recap everything that goes down, down under.