April 21, 2013

Reality Rundown: Bros vs. the Fun Sponge

The Amazing RaceSurvivor: Caramoan

The Amazing Race - The teams fly from Botswana all the way to cold, snowy Switzerland on the same flight so equalizer naptime for them!  And once they equalize and land, they have to wait until 8:55AM for the church with the clue to open.  The clue tells them to take another frakking train through the picturesque mountains to pick up a "Swiss rescue companion" AKA an adorable St. Bernard!  They take their St. Bernard on ANOTHER GODDAMN TRAIN to deliver their rescue dog to a mountain rescue guide.  At least there's adorable dogs to swoon over as we watch half an episode of train travel.

The next clue is a Roadblock is to scale Mount Eiger to retrieve a Travelocity gnome. Dogs and gnomes? Cuteness!  And in case you were wondering, they have to take a train to get to the mountain observation deck to start the climb.  The clue on the bottom of the gnome sends them BY TRAIN to retrieve their Detour clue from a dude tooting a big ass Ricola horn.  The next task is a rehash of one of the greatest challenges ever on this show: the cheese wheel.  This "Switchback" is to bring four big wheels of cheese down the hill on a sled, which is a lot more boring than last time. It's just cheese falling off a sled, not rolling down a mountain like boulder.  So basically the iconic, hilarious challenge is now associated with an uninteresting re-do of it.

Bates and Anthony check is as team #1 again and win a train trip around the world.  Just kidding, it's a trip to Bora Bora.  Joey and Meghan take horrible directions advice to find the Pit Stop and end up walking to the Pit Stop ages away when they should've taken a taxi.  It looks like Chuck and Wynona are safe, after spending most of the episode whining about being slow and then being overall terrible at challenges.  Turns out they didn't complete the cheese wheel task correctly (thou shalt not let thou cheese roll down the hill), so they receive a 30 minute penalty.  Joey and Meghan arrive at the Pit Stop, totally exhausted, but within the 30 minutes so Chuck and Wynona are eliminated.  Goodbye mullet, goodbye complaining.

Survivor: Caramoan - The teams break into two teams of five again for the reward challenge.  It's to traverse through a sloppy obstacle course to retrieve a bag of balls and shoot them into a tall basket.  The winning team gets a day at a resort complete with lunch, booze, shower, and a pool.  Malcolm's strategy for his team is to find all the bags for easy access later on, but Reynold copies him and does so much faster.  Purple slaughters orange, which sends Reynold, Erik, Phillip, Dawn, and Cochran on reward.  They chow down down on meat and scrub down in the shower, except Phillip who fills the pool with dirt, scum, and his nude privates.  Erik's tired of it!

Dawn is not having a great week.  Loudly sobbing in the woods, we learn Dawn lost her fake teeth retainer in the water, but Brenda's snorkel saves the day and Dawn's smile returns to normal.  She's also not sleeping, consumed by paranoia.  She fears Andrea will flip to Malcolm/Eddie/Reynold and vote her out.  Even Phillip is calling her a lunatic, and he should know the actions of a lunatic.  A good night's sleep helps Dawn and she wakes up seemingly normal again.  Stealth R Us has their plan together: four votes for Reynold, three for Malcolm in case of an idol.  Nothing will backfire at all!

The immunity challenge is to race across a platform and leap into the ocean, pull themselves across a rope underwater, and retrieve a ring to take to the other side.  Confusing to recap, as usual.  Phillip sits out of the challenge due to a childhood issue.  I don't know his backstory and if he had a prior water issue and I've never noticed whether he can or can't swim, but just a reminder last week's challenge was essentially to drown themselves.  It's an exhausting challenge for most of them, though of course golden boys Reynold and Malcolm are perfection.  Reynold, Malcolm, Brenda and Andrea compete in the final heat which upgrades from two rings to five.  The women stand no chance against the jocks.  Reynold wins immunity, foiling all plans to take him out... unless he's dumb enough to give up an idol again.

With Reynold immune, Phillip would still like to split the votes between Malcolm and Eddie (he's sure Malcolm doesn't have an idol).  Malcolm doesn't want to play his idol yet so starts searching for the new one.  Dawn and Andrea jokingly tease him about giving clues and sure enough, he puts his hand into a rock in front of them and finds the idol.  An idol not in a tree? Whaaaaat!  Stealth R Us plan to still shoot four votes Malcolm's way, hoping he won't play the idol.  If he plays it, there's still three votes for Eddie and he'll go.

Tribal time!  The bros acknowledge they are on the outs of the tribe with immunity meaning everything for them.  Malcolm's idol is brought out and he puts it around his neck proudly.  Probst brings up Phillip sitting out of the challenge, which he cites reminding him of a child incident getting stuck under a dock.  Fair enough.  Now here's where shit gets awesome.  Malcolm says his alliance is going to try to do something and he gives his other immunity idol to Eddie.  So the bro-down is totally safe and everyone is completely shocked that Malcolm's been hiding another idol.  Stealth R Us frantically whisper.  The bros laugh about being safe tonight but they know tomorrow the game begins again being six vs. three.  He lets the others know their votes will be towards Phillip because he's ruining the game.  What should be a fun time is being sucked up and turned into boredom by Phillip ("a fun sponge").  It's brought up that having the idols on proudly is one thing, but playing them is another.  What if it's all a ploy?  Cochran Survivor-fan nerds out, which is delightful because it's how we feel.

The votes are cast.  Probst tallies the votes.  He asks if anyone wants to play their hidden immunity idol.  Eddie plays his.  For a hot second it seems like Malcolm fooled them, but he plays his too.  And the votes come in.  Three votes for Malcolm don't count.  Four votes for Eddie don't count.  And here come the Phillip votes.  I may mock the bros, but they are my Survivor saviors ridding the game of Phillip at long last.