Everyone seems to be playing nice as both tribes make it to the new beach at the same time. Of course, the casual introduction and the merge feast were enough to keep everyone in a festive mood, but it is only a matter of time until the backstabbing ensues.
Everyone seemed to break up in pairs or groups, some in the water discussing strategies, while others were walking off to the forest to seemingly collect firewood and water. But we know it too well. Malcolm and Denise, thankfully, solidified their alliance and I was ecstatic that Denise brought up the idea of working together with Malcolm. Of course, it was a smart decision for her knowing that his biggest ally in the game has Matsing's immunity idol so that will be their ace in the game.
Smart move for Malcolm to pin her down. I saw Denise's confessional video, though, and she described it in the best way noting that it was the "best worst case scenario" for them. I think that Lisa would be a great addition to their alliance, although Malcolm is very much aware that he'd have to work doubly hard to ensure that they don't beat him in the end, if they make it to a final 3. But that is a solid number for now, and with a merged tribe that's got a lot of loose ends and cracks, the 3 could be a magical number, especially if they remain solid.
The Drama Continues
The drama between RC and Abi-Maria won't let up. And I think the former members of the Kalabaw tribe are smiling at the idea. It is fairly easy to pit them against each other with that level of animosity. I have never seen anyone in the game of Survivor with such personal vendetta against the other person. Abi is just a loose canon, as she's always been, and the fact that she got more people on her side only makes her all the more confident without thinking about the backlash of her action. Is she playing to win? Or is she simply cool with outlasting RC? Don't know her real plan is at this point.
One funny note about the challenge though: Probst's comments after Penner let go of the rope during the immunity challenge. Anyone whose seen Penner play before is aware that he and Probst can butt heads. Penner isn't one to be shy about letting others know what he thinks. So, when that exchange happened, I thought it was pretty funny.
Also, Malcolm did a good job at letting go of the rope, too. He has been doing well in the past few challenges so it was a smart move to let go of the rope right after Pete and Penner did. Trying to fight for that immunity necklace will put a much bigger target on his back. Another brilliant move to let go knowing that he is temporarily safe and not needing the immunity necklace just yet. And with more men left than women, there will be several others like him that might be perceived as a challenge threat.
I won't lie about it - I am bummed that RC got voted off. I hate seeing super competitive players get voted off but it was a smart move for the sake of the others left. I did not feel like she did enough scrambling to save herself, though. She could have built friendships and social connections, or at least try to get people to think about strategy from her standpoint. It was simply her or Penner and as the latter had the idol, it was over for her.
It was an interesting move for Jeff Kent, though. I did not think he would go after Penner right after the merge happens. If he would've done that, he might be better of keeping Katie than Penner, then. Why not vote him off sooner when he was going to get him out the next time? I, for a while there, though he was going to use Penner's idol to his advantage. But now, he simply flushed it out and unless Penner can work his magic, his days are numbered.
Next week should be exciting. Penner has got no more idol on his pocket. And with no alliances left, he is on his own and that immunity necklace is the most valuable thing he could possess right now. What would happen to Skupin now that his closest ally is gone? Will he be the next target once the dust settles on Penner? I know - it's interesting!
Check this space again to read about my new power rankings. It'll be interesting to assess how the remaining castaways fair in the competition.