On ''Survivor,'' after winning a new Corvette, Ian chooses Tom to go for a ride and nearly makes their alliance crash and burn, but it's Caryn who gets rear-ended

”Survivor”: Another reward winner nearly loses

”And our first question today comes from the gentleman in the back with the scary muttonchops and ‘Will break-dance for Milwaukee’s Best’ T-shirt. Go right ahead, sir.”

”What? Oh, okay. Yeah, I have a question for Ian. Uh . . . hey, Ian. My name’s Dalton. Big fan. I don’t have much of a life, so I watch a lot of Survivor. I also collect 8-tracks, but that’s neither here nor there. My question is: Remember last episode when Gregg took his nifty new alliance with him on a reward challenge, leaving the rest of you on a beach to conspire and vote his ass off? And then remember when you and Tom had your little powwow where you agreed not to make that same mistake and take each other because it would allow the three ladies to scam and scheme together. Yeah, so . . . um, I guess what I’m asking is what the hell were you thinking? I don’t know if you were just temporarily blinded and disoriented by the light of that bright red Corvette convertible (the ultimate midlife-crisis mobile if ever I’ve seen one), but for some reason or another, you won and then picked . . . Tom! Explain yourself, dolphin boy.”


”Yes, sir. I’m afraid to inform you that Ian isn’t actually here. In fact, no one is. And I think you’re supposed to be writing your weekly Survivor column, so do you think you might be able to get back to that so all your loyal readers — meaning, well, your mother — can see what you have to say about this latest episode?”

Okay, okay. Sorry about that, folks. I just don’t get how someone who has looked so good could make a move that was so damn bad. But I will say this: I’m glad he did it, because if there is one thing I love in Survivor, it is ramifications. (Actually make that two things: I also love it when 6-foot-8 men start crawling around in the sand crying just because some chick is upset she didn’t get a free meal.) And Ian’s bonehead move led to some serious scrambling. First Katie tried calling out Caryn, who in turn dropped a bombshell of her own when she announced Katie’s plan to go the final three with Ian and Tom — right in front of Jenn. And Katie! Then, Ian refused to commit to Caryn, leading Tom to tell him, ”You just gave away her vote tonight. You just screwed up.”

In fact, Tom almost single-handedly cleaned up the mess, shifting into bad-cop mode and threatening Katie with payback the following tribal council if she voted off either of the men. (”Tom sucks today — he’s being mean,” Katie complained, like a little girl who has just been sent to her room.) All this was good stuff. But the great stuff was still to come. After Robosurvivor once again won the immunity challenge, it looked like either Ian or Caryn was getting his or her walking papers (or walking parchments, as it were), with Katie holding all the power as a swing vote. And, man, did Caryn come out firing at tribal council. I’d like to regale you with specific quotes about exactly what was said to whom and why and when, but my hands were unable to write all that down, seeing as they were occupied pulling my jaw up from the floor. Out of nowhere, Caryn started calling out Ian for turning on Katie, and then calling out Tom as a liar, and then calling out Ian again for giving Katie last-minute notification about the plan to oust Gregg. The woman was on fire! At one point she even used the word ”baloney”!

Not only did her little tirade make everyone insanely uncomfortable (always a good thing), but it also led to some truly fantastic shocked facial expressions from Coby on the jury (always a great thing). What was Caryn thinking with this aggressive Boston Rob maneuver? No doubt she felt which way the wind was blowing and was making a last-minute attempt to save her own skin, but this probably wasn’t the best way to go about it. After all, would you want to keep someone around who keeps spilling secrets?

Speaking of which. I have a little secret to spill. I won’t be writing up a finale recap, seeing as I’ll be hiding in a bathroom stall at the reunion show hoping not to get beaten up by former Survivors I’ve written mean things about. (Don’t worry, the insanely talented Josh Wolk will be filling in with a recap that will no doubt be 20 times more coherent.) So until season 11, I bid farewell.

What’s that? Predictions? Oh, what the hell, I’ll embarrass myself one time. I’m pulling for and predicting a Tom victory. Naysayers need to put down their cup of Haterade and recognize what — to this point — has been a pretty masterly game, in terms of both strength and strategy. Sorry for the jinx, Tom, but you can handle it. After all, you are the one and only Robosurvivor.

What do you think? Who should win, and who will win Survivor: Palau?

Survivor: Palau
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