survivor russell hantz tom westman  'Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains': Randy Bailey shuffles off into the sunset“Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains” sees the Villains lose their first Immunity Challenge and there’s no surprises in the vote.

Following the tribal council, the Heroes come back and seem to make peace and resolve to work together as a tribe from now on. JT explains to Tom why he voted out Stephenie. Tom feels betrayed anyway, but maintains a good company line to JT because he knows he needs him. Colby is discouraged but Tom bucks him up. Tom for President.

In the morning, the plinky-plunky strains of despondency play. It’s kinda hilarious. The tribe bonds over the chicken prison break and wrangling them back into their coop. Whatever works. Candice tries talking to JT about the game and JT realizes she’s much more “strategical” than he realized. He takes it to Queen Cirie and plants a seed of doubt with her about Candice. So Cirie mentions it to Candice who then starts asking around and everybody gets annoyed with her talking game all the time.

At the villains camp, Parvati and Russell are snuggling and laughing hysterically about the snuggling. It’s a little weird and Evil Night-Vision Coach looks ready to murder them. Boston Rob very astutely says if you want to know who’s aligned, you observe who sleeps near one another. During this little lesson, we see Evil Night-Vision Coach stroke Jerri’s hair. CREEPY!

Coach and Rob tip Russell off to stop slobbering over Parvati because people will use that as an excuse to vote him out. Russell doesn’t like being told what to do. He’s “the daddy,” apparently. He tells Parvati and they laugh about it. She says Russell’s the one person she does trust, even though “he’s a lunatic.” Ha! Totally.

That night Coach regales the Villains with one of his “stories.” Rob asks if it’s the same story as last night. Haha. Russell scampers off into the dark and buries the machete in order to cause conflict in the camp and then talks about stealing Rob’s Red Sox hat. He’s got balls, Russell.

In the morning, Coach does yoga and sings and they transpose a sun over him so that he kinda looks like Jesus. I heart the editors of this show. Randy catches a giant clam and watching him beat it into submission with a rock is hilarious. He and Sandra eat it, everybody else turns up their nose. Geez, guys. It’s food! Randy and Coach are upset that nobody in the Villains tribe does anything.

It’s a Thunderdome challenge. Two men enter, one man leaves. You have to use your bag to get someone off the platform into the mud. Awesome. They’re playing for Immunity and their luxury items and coffee and rice. This challenge is from Palau, so Tom has done it before. The HEroes are going to dominate this challenge because there’s no puzzle portion. Brawn vs. Brains, remember.

The first faceoff is Tom vs. Russell. Tom makes quick work of Russell. Hee. Next is Candice vs. Parvati and Candice takes out Parvati. The Villains appear to get a point back when Coach takes out Rupert but Coach took his arm off his bag and celebrated prematurely (probably not the only thing he does prematurely). Jeff has to call it back and Coach flips him off. Classy, Coach. Cirie then whoops Jerri’s butt (did Jerri just RUN AWAY from CIRIE?) and then JT takes out Tyson for a 5-0 lead.

Next is Danielle vs. Amanda and Danielle puts up a good fight but ultimately loses. Colby handles Rob for their 7th point and finally James faces off Randy. Uh, Randy? Father Time versus Adonis? Are you kidding? James uses one shot to get Randy off and then flings down his bag like a total jerk and the Villains call him out on it, so he swears at then. James is a huge word-I-can’t-use-on-a-family-friendly-site but it rhymes with blocksag. Stephenie told Zap2it last week that she thought at one point James might hit her and I have no trouble believing that.

Also, Jeff Probst’s delight at the Brawn team whooping up was palpable. And gross. At one point, I think he, ahem, arrived.

I’m not sure there is much suspense tonight, gang. Randy is old, he’s going to go home. I’ll be shocked if he doesn’t. He’s gunning for Parvati (and rightly so) but I do not think he’ll be successful. Coach tries to act like he won’t be swayed by Parvati’s cuteness … as he hugs on her in the ocean and Tyson works on Rob, Sandra, Courtney and Jerri on Parvati but they are hesitant. I’d have to agree. You need to win challenges and Randy’s not as strong as Parvati. Interestingly,

Coach starts blow-harding about how honorable he is and then says, “I hate to pontificate about that [no, you don’t] but Martin Luther King says that ‘the greatest measure of a man is not in the way he handles times of comfort, but in the way he rises with controversy and challenge.'”

The actual quote, just for the record, is, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”  I will give Coach a “close enough” but I will also give him, “What does that have to do with right now in the game?”

Tribal Challenge
Jeff asks what they consider for who to vote out and they talk about who has won before, who has prior relationships in the game and how they do in challenges. They get in a slight competition about “worst shelter in ‘Survivor’ history” and I nominate Rupert’s hole-in-the-beach shelter. Sandra wonders where the machete went and Russell snickers. The editing might belie that Jeff knows what’s up but that could be the editing. Jeff asks Russell what he thinks and he says (it must be transcribed):

It’s definitely different. The dodos I played with last time couldn’t hold a candle to any one of these players. So it’s fun, but it’s a lot harder because you have everybody playin’ the game. But that’s what I like and that’s what I wanna see and that’s what I respect.

I honest-to-God think Russell means every word of that and is having the time of his life. Stuff like that is also keeping Russell SO FAR off the Villains’ radars because he seems like a star-struck “Survivor” fan just having a good time. It’s a good strategy.

The vote happens and we only see Parvati’s vote, which is for Randy. The votes go Randy, Rob, Randy, Randy, Randy, Randy and Randy so he’s done. Randy throws his buff in the fire (why? Sell that crap on Ebay, dude) and leaves. I bet dollars to donuts Russell voted for Rob just to screw with him.

Except I was wrong. Randy voted for Rob. That’s weird. Also, Coach is full of crap.

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Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."