”I can’t wait to send Ozzy’s cocky ass home tonight.” —Jason
I’m sorry, but when exactly did Survivor morph into Single White Female? Seriously, the Jason-Ozzy relationship is exactly like the one between Jennifer Jason Leigh and Bridget Fonda in that creepy movie. Jason took the disgruntled stalker route by going from obsessively trying to imitate his favorite Survivor ever to becoming obsessed with getting rid of him. Odd, odd behavior. But even though Ozzy Lite beat his hero in this episode‘s immunity challenge (although I have a slight beef with that, which I’ll get into a little later), it was Original Ozzy who had the last laugh when Jason and Eliza tried to play the fake hidden immunity idol that the Wizard of Oz made back on Exile Island. We’ll get more into that as well. But let’s take it from the top.
The episode started with Eliza observing that she and Jason were in an alliance together because they ”both annoy people.” Wow, is it just me or does that sound like the absolute worst alliance ever? Hey, sign me up for that! And poor Jason — certainly not the sharpest stick on the island…. Get it? Sharpest stick? Sorry, it was just too damn easy. Plus, I’m trying to be as annoying as possible so I can get into that awesome alliance of theirs. Now, accuse Eliza of what you want (make sure to start with the ”talking waaaaaay too much” thing), but she’s no dummy. She knew he second she laid eyes on that thing that it was not the hidden immunity idol, but, once again, I’m getting ahead of myself.
Meanwhile, Erik was busy comparing himself to a monkey. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard someone demean themselves that much in an analogy before. The saddest part is, if Ozzy told him to get a in a cage and start acting like a monkey, I honestly think Erik would do it. After Alexis exfoliated with sand all over her face, and Natalie started talking in a fake British accent for no particular reason, we were off to the merge feast. And what a feast it was. Who’s ready to eat some bat? James is! What the hell, James?!? This is no food competition! No one’s forcing you to eat it. And there’s plenty of other grub sitting out. Put. The. Bat. Down. I don’t care if it tastes like a juicy rabbit. You think Parvati is going to want to make out after you chow down on dead bat? On second thought, don’t answer that. Of course, you can’t have the merge feast without coming up with a tribe name, and they finally settled on Dabu, which apparently is Micronesian for I’m lying to these people for no other reason than I am a monkey in a cage and have nothing better to do.
The merge provides a great opportunity for people from opposite tribes to bond: people like Ozzy and Alexis. Ozzy told her how awesome he was for engineering Ami’s exit, and followed that with some deep and meaningful thoughts on the state of the evolution of the game that eventually devolved into ”You smell good.” (Which also, it should be pointed out, is a complete lie. No one smells good out there.) Amanda, predictably, did not like this one bit, and frankly, I don’t blame her. She already has to contend with Jason and Erik’s crushes on her man. Enough is enough!
It was around this time that we figured out Jason would be winning the immunity challenge, even though said challenge had not even begun. That’s because they showed him telling Eliza that if he won immunity, that he would give her the hidden immunity idol that wasn’t really an immunity idol. If you put that together with last week’s promo clip of Jason and Eliza talking more about the idol, it was pretty easy to figure out what was going down. But it was on to the challenge nonetheless. Things started off with Jeff Probst momentarily possessed by a too-cool-for-school rock star, sporting some sunglasses and giving the most mellow-yellow ”Survivors ready? Go” I’ve ever heard in my life. (What was going on there? Did someone slip some acid into his coconut juice or what?) Savvy viewers may remember this exact challenge from the Palau season. It’s intense. It’s dramatic. But I do have a slight problem. I’ve spent enough time in the water in my life to know that tides do not come in completely even. I’m not trying to assail the character of the challenge department, which works like crazy to make sure these things are fair. I’m sure measurements were done, and triple-checked, but things like this where you are at the mercy of the elements, perhaps giving someone 30 feet to the left a potentially game-winning advantage, make me nervous. And did you notice how James and Jason were in the last two slots on the left? Had Ozzy been over there, would he have had an extra half inch that may have carried him to victory? I don’t know, but I can’t help but be a bit of a conspiracy theorist and wonder. All that said, it was a pretty riveting showdown.
NEXT: Eliza exposes Ozzy