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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

The gross food challenge returns on a lively Survivor

Chelsea Townsend
Chelsea Townsend
Photo: Screen Grab (CBS Entertainment)

Because The A.V. Club knows that TV shows keep going even if we’re not writing at length about them, we’re experimenting with discussion posts. For certain shows, one of our TV writers will publish some brief thoughts about the latest episode, and open the comments for readers to share theirs.

  • In the aftermath of the last tribal council, Libby bemoans the fact that she’s gotten votes three times in a row. Dom wants to take a step back from the spotlight, but I think that ship has sailed. Wendell is trying to secure Laurel for his top four, so he tells her he’s got an idol. Laurel isn’t thrilled that Dom and Wendell share so much power.
  • Come on in, guys! It’s a slingshot reward challenge for a trip to the Survivor taco hut. Sounds a lot better than the meal that awaits later in the episode. “Sebastian cannot get it done. He’s high every time.” Yeah, I bet. The purple team burns through their weaker players, leaving it to challenge beasts Wendell and Laurel. It proves to be the winning strategy, as Wendell nails the winning shot. There’s no unanimous choice for Ghost Island, so Jenna draws the white rock and heads out.
  • Jenna, who has definitely been on this show all season, smashes an urn. No game! Ghost Island has got to be the biggest dud of a twist since the Medallion of Power. At the taco feast, Libby learns she was targeted because of the perception that she and Michael are a power couple. Michael works Angela for a vote against the Dom/Wendell alliance. She spills the beans almost immediately, and spreads disinformation as well. Michael is the easy target now, but he, like almost everyone else, has an idol.
  • Awwwww yeah! The gross food challenge is back, baby! Fish eyes are first. Wendell bails. Chelsea yorks hers up. Six move on to the beetle larva. Michael, Seabass, and Angela move on. Sea slugs! Michael gets it down. Angela swallows one whole and eventually gets the other down. Last round is the mother of pearl. I dunno, it’s gross. Angela does a little shimmy as she downs it all and wins immunity. Michael finishes his portion anyway, because you only play Survivor once.
  • The plan is to split the vote between Michael and Libby. It will work if everyone sticks to the plan! Michael tries to pull in original Malolo to blindside someone, namely Wendell. Laurel is on the fence, but Donathan is down for it. He tries to pull Libby in, and since she’s a target, why not?
  • There’s a lot of chatter about whether it’s still Naviti versus Malolo or if people are playing more aggressively for themselves now. Everyone votes. Michael plays his idol. It’s a fucking stick! No votes count for Michael, but apparently Malolo couldn’t hang, because Wendell only gets one vote and Libby is ousted.
  • This is still far from my favorite season, but I’m enjoying the personalities that have emerged since the Dom and Chris show ended. It’s almost as if Ghost Island brought in a bunch of replacement players, and I’m just hoping a few of them have some game.

My debut novel Charlesgate Confidential is now available from Hard Case Crime.