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Survivor recap: Taking Out the Trash

Things get messy at Tribal Council as ghetto-trash-talkin’ Ben is introduced to a little thing called karma

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Survivor Ben
Monty Brinton/CBS


TV Show
Reality TV
run date:
Jeff Probst
Current Status:
In Season

Before we get started on this week’s episode, a quick note that is a huge bummer but I wanted to address. No doubt, all of you saw the news about the tsunami that ravaged Samoa this week. Hundreds of people have died there (and in American Samoa and other islands like Pago Pago). I was in Samoa in August for the filming of Survivor season 20 and the people I met there were perhaps the nicest and most welcoming I’ve encountered in all my Survivor travels. My heart goes out to all of them in the wake of this tragedy. The islands of Upolu (where both tribes, Tribal Council, and the challenge beaches were all situated) and Savaii (where those amazing blowholes shoot water like geysers into the air) are truly majestic places, and I wish everyone there the best as they recover from the devastating wreckage.

Speaking of wreckage and devastation — awkward transition, anyone? — what the heck is going over at the Foa Foa camp? They can’t win a challenge to save their lives! Not only that, but the infighting reached record levels as we were introduced to our new evil-vanquishing hero: Jaison! I’ll admit it, after the first two episodes I was pretty confident that Jaison was, in fact, a robot. And not a sassy gay robot like C-3P0, either. Just a plain old boring robot. I wanted a bit more emotion. The dude was like freakin’ Spock out there (minus the ears) with his rational, logical approach to everything. What I was hoping to see out of him was a little spark, a little fire, a little James T. Kirk, if you will (minus the inappropriate sexual advances on non-human life forms).

And finally, we saw the man beam-up a heaping helping of outrage. HE’S MAD AS HELL AND HE’S NOT GONNA TAKE THIS ANYMORE!!! The focal point of Jaison’s rage in the cage was Ben, who last week repeatedly referred to Yasmin as ”ghetto trash.” Unfortunately, we’ve seen people make lame racist comments on reality television too many times before. Sometimes they get called on it (Braden on this summer’s Big Brother calling Kevin a ”beaner,” even though Kevin wasn’t even Mexican); other times, they don’t (Erika in season 4 of Big Brother calling Jee a ”Korean piece of s—” and a ”fresh off the boat immigrant”). Classy show, that Big Brother. But Jaison took it upon himself to make sure that Ben would be punished for his comments. He drew a line in the sand with his tribe and dared them all to cross it. Even big bad Russell with all his talk of controlling the game dared not step over. Jaison threatened to quit. He promised to make camp life miserable if they kept Ben around. And, most of all, by openly calling Ben out for his treatment of women, he forced his tribemates to take a good long look in the proverbial mirror and determine if they could live with themselves for keeping someone like Ben around over a far less destructive force in the tribe. He also positively OBLITEREATED Russell’s argument about keeping Ben for his strength in the challenges by asking for one single positive thing the guy had done in any challenges. Anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

NEXT: Jaison humiliates Ben…and we like it