Last week’s “Survivor 45” episode, titled “Sword of Damocles,” was pretty straightforward with the end result, but it allowed us to get some insight on a particular contestant, while also witnessing some interesting game moves and more votes being taken away for tribal council. Let’s break down what went down in this episode as an alliance seems to be solidified and contenders are starting to rise up.
The episode started with Kendra McQuarrie and Bruce Perreault upset at the blindside of Kellie Nalbandian, the latter even more so when he found out that she was gunning for him, after believing she was his closest ally. This led to a deep introspection of Bruce, who questioned his own similar personality to his personal life, and wanting to change for his family, after his childhood history of being in the foster care system. In the meantime, Emily Flippen wanted to reaffirm her alliance with Austin Li Coon and Drew Basile by throwing out their Reba ally Dee Valladares as a target, but both were hesitant, particularly Austin.
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Before the immunity challenge, the players were told to divide into teams of three, and the challenge was run in three stages, but with a twist that the team to lose in the first stage would all lose their votes at the upcoming tribal council. In the end, the team of Bruce, Kendra and Julie Alley won their way to the final stage and all won reward, where Bruce once again outlasted Julie to win immunity, and the team of Austin, Emily and Katurah Topps all lost their votes. However, they would have a chance to get it back on a journey that involved solving a logic math problem in three minutes. Katurah and Emily could not pull it off though – despite the latter’s occupation as an investment analyst – and Austin was able to gain his vote back, but he told everyone not in his Reba alliance that he lost it.
Meanwhile, Bruce, Kendra and Julie decided to vote for Jake O’Kane at the reward sanctuary – enjoying a single rotisserie chicken – but Dee wanted to go after Kendra after she told Katurah that she wanted her out, which Katurah then spilled to Reba. This led to some disagreements between the two women and the alliance wondering where to go, given Jake has been on the bottom recently in this game and used up his Shot in the Dark. But at tribal council, everyone decided to put all their votes on Kendra, blindsiding her out of the game.
So what happens next? Kendra’s vote out was very much expected, with the Reba 4 alliance of Dee, Julie, Austin and Drew looking to take over the game and having the numbers, but Emily has started to take note of their strong connection after her suggestion of voting out Dee was shut down and could do something about it. But on the other end, there is Katurah who seems determined to join Reba instead of working with anyone on her old Belo tribe, so she could take Emily’s place.
As far as targets go, Bruce and Jake are still on the top of the list, with the former still having an idol that everyone knows about and they always make a plan to flush it out every week, but his immunity wins get in the way. To quote the first juror Kaleb Gebrewold, “Bruce has been safe for 16 out of 17 days,” much to the annoyance of Kellie, who clearly was still visibly devastated at her blindside at tribal council.
Speaking of idols, we saw Austin give one of his two idols to Julie before the immunity challenge, since she was on a team with Bruce and Kendra, just in case she became a target for some reason. It is unclear if she has the one they all found on Reba beach (which expires at Final Five) or the one he gained after Kellie was voted out (which expires at Final Six), but it will be interesting to see what happens with that. And even though Reba is still together, we were shown some tension within the tribe when deciding who to vote out, but Dee ended up getting her way, with Julie even stating that she would never vote her out when she was brought up by Kendra for the close relationship Dee has with Austin, which was also highlighted.
Looking at the “Next Time On Survivor” promo, Emily and Bruce have come together to go after the Reba alliance, while Jake and Drew get into a heated argument, with Drew potentially listed as a target, so it will be exciting to see what could stem from all this in the upcoming episode.
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