It's week eight, so obviously it's time for the... manbun alliance.

Survivor NZ recap, week 8: The manbun alliance

This week on Survivor NZ we begin the back-half of the game as the two tribes merge into one, and the individual game really kicks off. Luke Harries recaps.

With the untimely departures of JT and Dylan last week, we are left trying to figure out where the game will go from here. Will the original Chani tribe be able survive without the numbers on their side? Will there still be an underdog to root for? And most importantly, who will Adam complain about now? 

Adam Celebrates

Adam has been plotting Dylan’s demise since the beginning of the season, and his dreams finally came true last week. Adam took some time to bask in Dylan’s exit.

TFW you vote out your nemesis

At this point, I would be shocked if anyone was under any illusion that Adam’s hatred for Dylan was just a surface level game rivalry. Adam, who has been surviving on a few handfuls of rice each day for 21 days now, considered his orchestration of Dylan’s elimination as one of his greatest Survivor achievements, up there with winning watermelon and pizza.

Dylan’s departure has left a void in Adam’s mind, where all the hatred used to be. It seemed to drive Adam a little mad this week, as we saw during this bizarre campfire performance. I couldn’t really hear what he was trying to be, but it sounded like a strange cross between Shakespeare and The Godfather.

Everyone Goes Hundys at the Merge Feast

As is Survivor tradition, the merging of the tribes into the new “Phsan” tribe was celebrated with a huge feast. As someone who has been known to have a pre-dinner snack because the Uber Eats is taking too long, I do find it very difficult to really understand just how hungry these castaways are after three weeks of minimal food. Watching everyone lose their minds over a picnic really put things into perspective. Lisa went so far as to compare the immense joy of seeing a burger bun grilled with butter to holding her newborn son for the first time.

Sorry kids, mum just loves butter, ok.

Knowing that this may be the last significant meal they have for another 20 days, no one is wasting this opportunity to absolutely gorge themselves on lukewarm fries and spaghetti carbonara. Dave is determined to eat until he can’t eat anymore. He wasn’t bloody joking. Dave ate himself to the brink of disaster, but managed to pull himself back for a few more mouthfuls of watermelon.

Dave demonstrates the four stages of eating.

Strat Chat

Tess and Adam are finally reunited after what must have been a really devastating 10 days apart. The Queens of Mean are back together, and I suspect this power couple will be a force to be reckoned with.

Despite forming some potential alliances at Chani, Adam lays it on thick for Tess (can he even lay it on any other way?). Adam doesn’t want his original alliances to suspect he got along ok with Chani, so he makes sure EVERYONE knows how much he ‘hated’ the energy there.

Chani are counting on Adam and Matt to keep them in the game, but with Adam going around camp telling everyone that Arun was so mean and awful, things aren’t looking great. Speaking of bad energy, when asked by Matt if she had managed to build a connection with Eve, Tess responded “what, that fucking brick wall?”. Savage, Tess.

In a confessional, Dave details his plan for survival in the game. His first clue that this plan might not be super dependable should be that it hinges on something called a “Manbun alliance”.

Tribal Council

It’s the first post-merge tribal council, and after winning the individual immunity challenge, Matt has the honour of wearing the individual immunity necklace. Matt isn’t a huge guy, so normally I would advise him to steer clear of a chunky statement necklace, but given the circumstances, I think it works for him.


A bold statement necklace is the must have accessory in Thailand for the A/W 2018 Season.

During tribal, Tara tells Chissy that she was busy doing her rounds today, and having chats with everyone. Arun calls her out, feeling a bit left out that Tara hadn’t had chats with him, and it transpired that Tara had in fact not spoken to everyone, but only her Khang Khaw alliances. Finally, things are starting to get shady at tribal!

Blindside Rating: 7/10

This week was a big blindside for both Arun and Dave, with Matt and Arun sticking with their original Khang Khaw alliance, and Renee flipping on Arun. I think there will be a big fallout from this vote, and it will be interesting to see if Matt and Dave’s old high school bond will finally be broken by this vote.

Chisholm-ism of the week

“Wanna know what you’re playing for? You’ll have to wait until after the challenge.” I’m starting to get real sick of your games, Chisholm. Just tell us the damn prize! “She’s a beauty” just won’t cut it for me anymore!

Survivor NZ Quick Stats

2 – Chocolate bars, Tess’s chosen reward, which she could “do in under a minute”

2 – The number of hands Tess had full of food at the merge feast at all times.

4 – Rolls of toilet paper, Lisa’s chosen reward. A solid choice after that merge feast.


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This content, like all television coverage we do at The Spinoff, is brought to you thanks to the excellent folk at Lightbox. Do us and yourself a favour by clicking here to start a FREE 30 day trial of this truly wonderful service.

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