At Survivor: Tocantins, a few personalities have started to poke heads out of their little holes not unlike the fabled groundhogs that are the harbingers of either spring, or six more weeks of winter. Will this episode itself foretell of a renewal of Survivor drama? Or will it be six plus weeks of the winter of our discontent? Only Probst knows for sure.

Erinn goes solo. Candace’s sole remaining friend at Timbira, Erinn, is backpedalling furiously after Candace’s departure. Coach has his sights set squarely on her narrow butt, however, and since he seems to be controlling the way the wind blows at that camp, I’d say Erinn better hope for a big reversal over the next three days. No one’s buying the idea that you were hanging out with Candace because you thought she looked suspicious and you wanted to see what she was up to, and you shouldn’t be selling it.

At the same time, things are coming along swimmingly at Jalapao. The fishing equipment they won last episode is paying off, and the camp bonds over a good solid meal leading into challenge. A challenge in which comfort items will go to the victor of a blindfolded race to collect buckets of water and corn which will be used to fill larger buckets and raise flags. Timbira doesn’t fare very well, and Jalapao wins easily. Brendan and Taj are selected again for exile, and their secret alliance is given a further chance to grow.

Team Crazy and Team Covert. Timbira’s defeat has Coach all kinds of pissed off. I’m sure that his ego is having a hell of a time coping with the loss. I do love the way that he reacts — by first telling the tribe not to blame anyone, and then immediately going off with Tyson and calling out Sierra and Erinn in the loss. Great job, Coach, you are making it very, very easy for me to dislike you. Coach names Tyson, the second daftest person on Timbira, his assistant coach. This is actually very convenient, as it keeps the biggest lunatics at camp nicely grouped up.

Taj and Brendan collect their second clue at Exile Island, and as I suspected, their relationship is further cemented. They plot to pull Sierra and Steve into their alliance of two, giving them the potential for a secret four person alliance going into a merge situation. The possibilities astound!

Timbira losses – cubed.
Brendan and Taj are reunited with their tribes for an immunity challenge involving moving and stacking large crates. After an extremely tight race, Jalapao edges Timbira for the win. Timbira sacked up quite a bit, but Jerry is blaming himself and his recent stomach problems for the loss. Is Coach going to listen to his bellyaching? Or will the big C continue to target Erinn? The fact of the matter is that Jerry was largely ineffective, and Erinn seemed like one of the very few who kept a level head in the latter stages of that challenge. We will find out if Coach is basing his decisions on personal vendettas or on the desire to make his tribe stronger.

Timbira turmoil. Coach appears none to happy about Jerry’s turn for the worse. Erinn is feeling safer now than she did at the beginning of the episode, and this sends Coach off the deep end. He claims that he is too “true” a person to be able to exist around someone as “evil” as Erinn. Hey, D-bag, she’s just happy that she might possibly be getting a reprieve; it doesn’t make her Darth Vader!

Meanwhile, Brendan uses the second clue from Exile to find the individual immunity, immunity which was hidden inside the tree mail idol. This is a very fortunate find for him — he has immunity, and right now, no one is thinking about him for elimination. Not only this, but presumably, he can also tell Taj where she might find immunity. The find makes them early favorites as they nurture their behind-the-scenes alliance.

Jerry is putting on a brave face before tribal, but Tyson is concerned that people might be eyeing him for elimination. Ty’s mouth is still watering over the idea of voting off Erinn, however.  “I love seeing people cry when their dreams are crushed right in front of them,” he quips. C’mon, you’re going to say that, and Erinn is supposed to be the evil one? At tribal, Jeff lets Erinn give voice to the frustration she felt when people didn’t allow her to lead them to victory at immunity challenge, despite the fact that she had the puzzle figured out. Coach expresses his desire to lead the tribe, but Erinn states that the only way Coach seems to lead is in a passive aggressive fashion. Coach counters with the argument that he would rather be a good assistant coach than act as a head coach for the glorification of his massive ego – a statement which seems to contradict comments from him earlier in the episode. The votes are cast and Jerry is eliminated with both Tyson and Coach voting for him. Again, Coach makes a lot of noise about wanting to lead, but in the end, he is being led.

Coach seems to be eager to be in charge when votes are cast and complain vocally about his tribe’s performance at challenges, yet when those challenges are taking place, he’s well in the background. When the tribe goes against his will, they are actually playing right into his back-door personality. He can continue to claim that he has things all figured out but no one will listen to him, all without ever having to prove himself. Personally, I'm praying for his head to be spinning off his neck by the end of next episode. The hope of that alone makes it more than worth tuning in for!

Posted by:Andrew Stubinski