It’s the first week of Survivor: Micronesia — Fans vs. Favorites without Chet darkening our doorstep, and I am hoping that there will be more ass kicking on my TV now that he isn’t there to drag the average down. Will someone take up the mantle of crappiest survivor ever? Or can we leave that dark period of history in the past?

Can ya count, chickens? ‘Cuz your days are numbered!
It’s a dreary morning at camp Malakal, and the girls want to alleviate the boredom by killing a chicken. Ozzy sagely points out that each chicken lays an egg every day, and they will therefore not be killing any fowl today. Tracy is bristling under Ozzy’s leadership and expresses her desire to get him out. So basically, stuff we already know.

The color of money? Malakal purple. Things don’t seem to be that much better at Airai, as the women complain about the wet, the dirt, and the smell of their surroundings. Kathy is taking the conditions particularly hard, and despite her I Dream of Jeannie-esque attempts to “blink” herself home, she remains at camp.

Back at Malakal, Erik engages in a bout of hero worship with Ozzy, drawing comparisons to Simba and Mufasa from The Lion King. Cirie is fielding offers to be their wedding coordinator as the man-love duo,  Amanda, and herself take a fishing trip out to the reef. Cirie expresses her reluctance to venture to far from shore, but relents after Ozzy takes the piss out of her. Yet more resentment for Ozzy’s leadership, hmm.

That’s the sort of excitement which leads us into the reward challenge. Survivors compete for a trip to another island to get cleaned up and enjoy a nice meal. During the competition, the teams must roll a five foot diameter stone, the ancient currency of Micronesia, while blindfolded over clay boxes to free puzzle pieces. Malakal makes things interesting by taking an early lead, putting them in the position to win their first challenge since the tribal remix. Malakal’s lead lasts, and they enjoy their first challenge win as a tribe. Jason and Tracy are sent to Exile Island. This should do wonders towards repairing Tracy’s opinion of Ozzy.

Exit stage left, don’t forget your hanky. Malakal makes their way to the reward, a sugar-infused picnic
by a waterfall, followed by showers for all. Ozzy is happy to win a reward for his little fan, Erik, and even happier to take a shower with a topless Ami and Amanda while the smitten Erik drools on. Drooling over boobies? Or over his idol? Only his lockable diary knows for sure.

Meanwhile, the rain is taking its toll on Kathy. After a meal of raw clams, she is visibly upset. Clearly this woman is not dehydrated, as her supply of tears seems endless. Yet somehow, even to these jaded eyes, her plight seems far more genuine than Chet’s. Kathy’s tribe members are sympathetic, and aKathleensleckman_survivor_microne_3

visit from Jeff ensues. Jeff quizzes Kathy on her motives for requesting a one-way trip off the island before finally granting her request to leave. Kathy says goodbye to her tribe and leaves, headed towards the comfort of the mainland and the family she misses. Airai appears none too concerned about the loss, and well pleased to see Kathy’s misery come to an end.

The Malakal jinx has it’s revenge. Cirie and Amanda have a little confab over Ozzy’s growing arrogance. Ami joins the pair and they conspire to vote off Ozzy’s shadow, Erik. They agree that keeping Ozzy in the dark about their plans is key.

At the immunity challenge, Malakal and the returning Exiles learn of Kathy’s departure, but have little time to process the news as they must compete hauling puzzles pieces off a barge using a huge winch. Ozzy, captaining four of the five retrievals for Airai, gives his tribe the lead going into the solve. But just when it seems like Malakal is on the verge of stringing together two victories in a row, Amanda and Cirie drop the ball, their puzzle-solving abilities paling in comparison to Eliza and Jason’s. Malakal is headed to tribal again.

A delicious twist in the offing, mmm twists… At Malakal, Ozzy wants to keep Erik, as expected. And Ami, Amanda, and Cirie make their plans to vote off Erik. But, lo! Ami displays a flair for classic Survivor blindsiding, planning to vote for Ozzy, assuming that Tracy and Erik will do the same. Erik seems a little shaky on the idea of voting Ozzy, worried about his position should the Ozzy vote fail. Ami sees the inherent dangers of her plan to rid Malakal of the threat of the godling as well.  Also, there’s the fact that Ozzy has the immunity idol.

Once in the presence of Probst, the tribe singles Ozzy out as the leader of Malakal. Ozzy is reluctant to Tracyhugheswolf_survivormicronesi_2
accept the mantle (and the bulls-eye that goes with it.) Ozzy’s defenses are up, and one can only imagine his trigger finger is itching to pull out the immunity idol. The tribe goes to vote and Ozzy declines to play his trump card. Once again, Ozzy’s odd prescience prevails, as holding onto the idol proves to be the right move. Tracy is sent packing with a nearly unanimous vote.

Next week — More heroic bloodshed is promised, our appetites whetted by a gruesome shot of Erik getting a chest full of wooden platform after taking a tumble during a balance challenge. Whoa, maybe I’ll just watch a snuff film instead! Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Parvati realizes that she hasn’t manipulated anyone in days and rectifies the situation by making new alliances. Good, we were all getting worried.