I am really enjoying the irony of a gutter and spouting specialist who can’t look up.

Survivor NZ, week 11: A chocolate feast you can’t turn your back on

We’re into the 11th week of Survivor NZ, and this game is only getting crazier. Luke Harries recaps all the action, including a new immunity idol, a chocolate feast, and non-blindside strategies.

Things got tense at last week’s tribal council, and after putting up a good fight, we said goodbye to Renee. The drama didn’t stop there though – Arun had a score to settle with Renee back at the Jury Villa, and back in the game we saw Dave doing some damage control of his own. But, the game must go on, so let’s see how things unfolded this week.

Idols do grow on trees

The biggest twist this week was the discovery of a new hidden immunity idol. After some quality strat chat by the well, Dave, Lisa and Matt stopped to have one last tête-à-tête, when Lisa and Matt both noticed an arrow on the ground. In some of the worst lying I have seen this season, Lisa tells the others that she wants to just “stay and meditate” for a bit.

The grimace really didn’t help with this already unconvincing lie.

Matt, knowing exactly what Lisa is up to, stays behind too, and Dave heads off, having no clue what is going on. Lisa and Matt find the idol at the same time, but the idol is up a tree, and Matt is the one to climb and get it, so technically, the idol is his. Matt tries to tell Lisa that she wouldn’t have been able to get the idol on her own, because she can’t climb trees. Ohhhh right, because only a BIG STRONG MAN can find idols right? Pfft.

The worst part is that Matt couldn’t even get the idol down until Lisa untied the rope it was attached to. Lisa is understandably quite upset about Matt taking possession of the idol – but she might have a cunning plan up her sleeve. Later on, Lisa tries to convince Matt to give her possession of the idol, even if it remains technically his. It’s a weird game of idol chicken, where they both say they trust each other “one hundred and ten percent”, and yet neither trusts the other enough to hold onto the idol.

I’m pretty sure Dave could prescribe you something for that.

Chocolate Extravaganza

This week’s reward challenge is a chocolate feast, and before the challenge begins, Chissy gives everyone a little piece of chocolate brownie, to whet their appetites. This sweet sampler is supposed to help motivate the castaways, but it seems that Tara was more than satisfied with her tiny morsel.

Tara wants you to know she just doesn’t really crave chocolate.

Survivor just seems like a really weird arena to be bragging about how you don’t really crave chocolate? Anyway. Eve is the eventual winner of the challenge, and she chooses runner up Dave, and chocolate obsessed Adam to join her.

This season of Survivor NZ has a running theme of redemption – not for the competitors, but for the show itself. The chocolate feast was a vast improvement over last season’s ziploc bag of chocolate poo.

What a difference a year can make.

Adam is bloody stoked to be part of this chocolate extravaganza, especially since he had no chance of winning the challenge. Apparently, after 31 days in the jungle, Adam’s botox is still immobilising his face enough that he can’t look up.

The botox did not however prevent Adam from giving yet another spectacular impression of Dave and his post-binge moaning. Dave has been to pretty much every reward since the merge, and every feast he goes to, he eats like crazy then has immense regret.

We get it Dave, you ate too much. Again.

Strat Chat

The alliances are becoming less and less clear as the game proceeds. What we know for sure is that Tess and Adam remain a solid power couple, to the point where I’m still confused that no one has tried to target them yet. Matt and Dave have a controversial real-life friendship, which has been great for Dave, and a chore for Matt so far. And finally we have Tara and Lisa, who have been together most of the game.

When your power couple alliance is so strong that you don’t even need to get up.

Here’s where things get tricky: Lisa and Matt are very close, but Lisa knows she needs to boot out Matt if she wants any chance of winning votes at the end of the game. Unfortunately for Lisa, Matt wins immunity this week, as well as finding an idol right in front of her, so her chances of getting him out aren’t looking great.

All things considered, Eve seems like the easiest vote. Eve has been extremely strong in challenges, but her social game is not so great. Eve struggled to make connections with any of the original Khang Khaw members, so as her Chani tribemates were picked off, she didn’t have many options left.

However, it seems that not everyone feels great about targeting Eve, and her weaker social game could be in her favour, as some of the other survivors feel she might be an easier opponent in the final three. At the last minute, Tara throws out Dave’s name, in an effort to keep Eve around. Adam humours the idea, but Lisa thinks it’s too late to be making new plans.

Tfw u want Dave.

Tribal Council

This was an emotional tribal, and pretty hard to watch. Eve felt that her alliances had abandoned her, and she knew she wasn’t safe since no one wanted to talk to her, or even look her in the eye.

Adam laid it out for Eve, saying she hadn’t ever spoken strategy with him. Eve responded by telling Adam that he underestimated his power in the game. Eve is totally spot on about Adam, and I think if the other players aren’t careful, Adam could be on his way to winning the $250k.

Blindside Rating: 1/10

As sad as it was to see Eve go, it was clear it wasn’t going to go any other way. Tara’s plan to switch the vote to Dave proved too little, too late.

The flower was a nice touch though.

Chisholm-ism of the week

“Just to show you I’m good for it.” This was a weird thing to say, right? Has Matt got a track record for not delivering on reward promises? You’ve got me feeling suspicious, Chissy.

Survivor NZ Quick Stats

6 – Survivors left in the game
0 – the amount of cravings for chocolate Tara has
0.1 – centimeters from Tess’s head it looked like the bowl was when it fell in the reward challenge. Can Tess make it out of the game without another concussion? I hope so.


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