Well, what a weekend of some great Survivor! After seeing moments of promise here and there, this weekend, we finally saw some really solid gameplay from the contestants. And it wasn’t just the usual suspects getting involved, with even the likes of Pegleg finally deciding they wanted to get involved in some strategy.
Let’s take a look back on episode 12 of Survivor UK, which resulted in the unfortunate elimination of one of the season’s best players and characters, Tinuke.
It’s the morning after Doug’s blindside, and while Chris is feeling good that he just made it through another vote, Hannah is not so happy. She was left out of the plan to vote for Doug, and she feels like an outsider in the tribe. Ever the great social player, Tinuke consoles Hannah and assures her not to worry because Christopher will definitely be the next one out (hmmm… perhaps a bit too optimistic on that one, T!).
Seeing the relationship between Hannah and Tinuke has been a highlight of the season and shows how Survivor can bring out some compelling conversations and dynamics. Both women reflect upon their appreciation of their relationship but also acknowledge that they have to play a game that often requires them to betray each other.
Moving on to the reward challenge, the players get intimate with one another as they must navigate a wall of pegs and remove them one by one. This results in the players crawling all over each other, which is very funny to watch, and even includes a segment dedicated to Nathan’s balls, which I definitely did not expect.
Laurence accidentally removes one of the wrong pegs during the challenge, which results in him and Peg being eliminated early. Peg doesn’t seem particularly happy about this and has a little strop on the sit-out bench. Tinuke also removes an incorrect peg, meaning she and Nathan have to step down. This leaves a showdown of Christopher and Matt versus Leilani and Hannah, and all of them put in an impressive performance.
In the end, Leilani drops, meaning Chripstopher and Matt win a trip to the Survivor Pizza Parlour. They also get the chance to invite one other player to join them, and they choose Laurence, much to Peg’s annoyance.
At the pizza parlor, Christopher goes full-on game mode and starts to pitch Laurence and Matt a plan to overthrow Tinuke and Nathan. Chris is pretty blunt and tells the guys they are both on the outs and just waiting to be picked off. Initially, this doesn’t resonate with Matt and Laurence, who are a bit too prideful and insist that their alliance has no hierarchy. They essentially shut down the conversation, with Matt frustratingly saying that people should be happy to be out there rather than engage in the game.
However, our resident schemer Chris is not giving up just yet. Back at camp, he butters up Matt and tells him that he could even go on to win if he stepped up and made a big move. Pegleg pops by and talks about people being Tinuke’s lapdog, and at this point, you can see a glint in Matt’s eye as he realises there is a huge opportunity at his fingertips to vote out either Nathan or Tinuke. Moments later, Matt chats with Laurence and pushes the idea to vote out Tinuke.
Tinuke seems none the wiser that any of this is going down, and she’s dead set on targeting Chris. Going into the immunity challenge, Tinuke says it would be good to win immunity mainly because it will help her build her resume, not realising she is in danger of being voted out. Neither Tinuke nor Chris are able to secure an immunity win in the end, with Laurence snagging his first necklace of the season.
Back at camp, Pegleg voices his interest in voting out Tinuke or Nathan to Leilani, but she is not having it. She even acknowledges that Nathan and T are in the driver’s seat, but she doesn’t want to make a move against them. It’s annoying to see Leilani choose to go and play Survivor but then push back and complain anytime anything you would expect from playing Survivor happens.
Despite no immunity win, Tinuke still feels confident that Chris is going home. She says he has no alliances, no immunity necklace, and doesn’t even have his idol anymore. She couldn’t be more sure that Chris is going home if she tried. However, that confidence is about to come crashing down as Laurence decides to spill the beans. Whilst this may seem like a strange decision, Laurence points out that if she goes to the jury, he may as well curry favour with Tinuke.
Now that the cat is out of the bag, Tinuke goes and does some investigating and tries to get Hannah and Peg to confirm how they will be voting that evening. She now seems a bit rattled, and as we head into tribal council it becomes clear to Tinuke that she could very well be the one going home that night.
Once the votes are read, we see Chris and Tinuke vote for each other, but where will the other votes fall? With Tinuke and Chris both with three votes against them, it comes down to the final vote, and the fourth member of the jury is… Tinuke! Gasps come from the jury, who are all shocked to see her voted out. I really thought Tinuke may have been our winner, so it was also a big surprise for me to see her go.
This episode was great to see Chris play such an influential role in the vote despite being in such a vulnerable position himself, and it was really compelling to see Matt and Hannah make a difficult decision to turn on their friend Tinuke.
Although there is not much left of the season, it is fantastic that we are now finally seeing the players step it up and start to pull off some great moves.