On ''Survivor,'' self-absorbed Shane didn't see it coming when his tribe turned on him; plus, Terry gets some lovin' from home
Credit: Shane Powers: Jeffrey R. Staab

”Survivor”: They never see it coming

”Oh my God, I’m gonna have a chocolate ice cream bar in about one minute.” — Shane

That’s funny, Shane. I say the same thing myself right at the end of every Survivor episode, except replace ”chocolate ice cream bar” with ”lukewarm Milwaukee’s Best.” Seriously, that had to be one of the best send-off lines in Survivor history, right up there with Richard Hatch’s ”I’ve been bamboozled!” and Christy’s post-booting sob session about her ”evil stepsisters.” Whether you loved Shane, hated him, loved to hate him, or hated to love him, you have to admit the dude was crazy entertaining. Or maybe just plain crazy. Either way, he was a blast to watch, capping it off by pouring water into the wrong hole at the immunity challenge and then twisting and contorting his face into every possible position while the votes were read aloud at tribal council. (Jim Carrey, eat your heart out.)

There was a lot of hype coming out of CBS about this season, and until a few weeks ago, I wasn’t really feeling it. Don’t get me wrong — it was no Thailand, Africa, or Vanuatu, but it was no Pearl Islands, Amazon, or Palau either. But the past two episodes have been great. Why, tonight we even got close to seeing some good ol’ fashioned Survivor porn! See Terry’s wife, Trish, proclaim, ”I can’t wait to get that beard off him and get him back to his hot-looking, studly self.” See Terry get up to go turn the lights off as Trish slides into bed. See Trish request her hubby to ”be gentle with me.” See Terry — who has never had a problem celebrating his Survivor conquests — tell the cameras, ”We had some private time.” See Trish promise him, with lights out, ”I’ll be good to you.” Finally, see Terry later tell Aras that ”there wasn’t any sleeping on my part.” (Why do I have a sneaking suspicion that Trish also asked Terry to wear the immunity necklace at some point during their hanky panky? Let’s just hope they didn’t engage in a threesome with the hidden immunity idol.)

Trish certainly had it better — at least I hope so — then Cirie’s spouse, H.B., who was welcomed with open arms by his Hunny Bunny…and then told to get straight to work and do everything around camp. Of course, Shane’s son, Boston, had the best deal of all — he got to skip school to go hang out in Panama! Sweet!

As far as the whole reward challenge went, my first thought was that Terry should have thrown it, because winning would mean he would have to piss some people off by denying them time with their loved ones. My second thought was that he should have tried to gain some favor with his tribemates by giving them all the time with their family members and putting himself on Exile Island. My third thought was that I should have bought more pretzel nuggets, since I was about to run out, but that’s neither here nor there. But after thinking it over, Terry didn’t have a whole lot of options. If he had lost, he surely would have been sent to Exile Island and been away from all the strategizing. Same deal if he had won and put himself on Exile. His best bet probably would have been to win and then give himself the hug option (which Aras received) so he still could have made three other people very happy while also still being able to form a new alliance with someone.

What I do know is that he shouldn’t have gotten into it with Aras back at camp about the differences between mother and wife. (By the way, I’m not taking sides on that one, lest I enrage one of those special women in my life. Luv ya, gals…even if neither ever reads my column. Sniff. Sniff.) I’ve given Aras a fair amount of crap in this here space over the past few months, but he said one of the smartest things all season when he commented to Jeff Probst about Terry’s dominance: ”The challenges are just one part of the game. You can win all the challenges you want. If you don’t win people over, you don’t win the million dollars.” If only Robosurvivor II: The Sequel had been a little more humble, I’d like his chances should he make it to the final two a lot more. (Not to say he can’t win a vote, especially with Austin, Sally, Bruce and wild cards — and I do mean wild — Shane and Courtney on the jury.)

The thing I love most about the last two episodes? The maturation of Cirie as a power player. After her masterly move last week, she blindsided Shane yet again. And if she gets into the final two, you may as well hand her the million-dollar check. It’s no chocolate ice cream bar, but I’m pretty sure she would make do.

What do you think? Who would be Terry’s toughest competition in the final two? Could Cirie scheme her way to the finale? And who’s more important: your wife or your mother?: