In an episode with stellar product placement, Paschal shows his dark side, ''the General'' gets shown up, and crime reporter Tammy gets shown the door, says Dalton Ross
Tammy Leitner, Survivor: Marquesas
Credit: Tammy Leitner: Monty Brinton/CBS

Tammy is voted off

The other day, a friend and I were sizing up the remaining ”Survivor” contestants. By the time we got to Paschal, neither of us had much to say. (A rarity for me, I know.) ”Boring,” we called him. ”A watered-down Kentucky Joe,” we charged. ”Sexy as hell,” we agreed…. Wait, scratch that last one. In any event, we basically decided that outside of being a cuddly old guy, he really didn’t bring a whole lot the show. My, how wrong we were.

The judge began the evening by revealing his dark side for the very first time, describing his tropical paradise in the Marquesas as ”Nasty, dirty, filthy — it’s just pure hell.” So, for those of you scoring at home, living on a beach with a 21-year-old blond waif fawning over your every move now officially qualifies as ”hell.” (Funny, don’t lots of guys pay insane amounts of cash for just such an arrangement? Hell must be a pretty happening spot these days. I should really call my travel agent.) Not that we want the old man to suffer, but it was nice too see another angle to the graybeard.

Of course, this side was not nearly as confusing as what we saw next, when the 57-year-old defied both Mother Nature and Father Time to absolutely DESTROY the competition in the reward challenge. Homeboy looked like freakin’ Aquaman out there! Actually, he looked more like an underwater Carl Lewis, sprinting through the surf with that boulder to earn his little cruise getaway, sponsored, of course, by this week’s superspecial coprorate partner, Visa! This was truly product placement at its finest. (I was especially thankful for all the extreme close-ups on the credit card because I keep forgetting how the heck they were paying for all that escargot and crème brulee. I’m almost shocked they didn’t work something in there about the boat not accepting American Express.)

Getting back to that reward challenge, what s the deal with ”the General.” First of all, why is he ”the General,” and secondly, how many times does he have to get embarrassed by much weaker folks in water competitions? Remember that time that Kathy and Gina smoked him and John in rowing? And now the tattooed tough man gets hosed by a senior citizen! Ouch.

Anyway, so not only do we learn that Paschal has some demons, and apparently has biological prowess resembling that of the Six Million Dollar Man, but he can also be a spontaneous crazy man. Did you check him out with that $200 tip. Sweet! Maybe I should go back to being a waiter!

Luckily, Pappy provided enough of a distraction in what otherwise proved to be one of this season’s less stellar episodes. The immunity challenge was a nice stab at something new (I especially liked the popcorn bit. What’s wrong, Mark Burnett, couldn’t get Jiffy Pop to throw in some bucks for a plug?), but it was too confusing and, well, just too plain dark to be able to tell what the hell was going on. Also, I know it’s the show’s job to try and keep us guessing, but that pump fake about Sean and Vecepia switching sides to vote off Neleh? Please. That may have worked back in Borneo, but we’ve wised up since then. No, once ”the General,” (and yes, I insist on placing that in quotes every single time) got his precious immunity, we knew it was Tammy’s turn to go. Outside of being one of the bad guys (well, girl, actually), and her dust-up with Zoe, Tammy had been pretty boring anyway. The real fun should start once ”the General” (see) gets voted off or scores immunity again. Then the fab five will have to turn on themselves. Then we may get to see Pappy’s dark side again.

Survivor: Marquesas
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