Survivor recap: The Spy Who Shacked Me

Tony's scheming doesn't seem to rattle anyone in his alliance except for Jefra, who must make a life-altering decision over ribs.
Ep. 09 | Aired Apr 23, 2014

INTERNATIONAL MAN OF MYSTERY: Tony demonstrates that his bag of tricks is still chock full of surprising talents, including (but not limited to) prehistoric architecture, low-level espionage, and general sneakiness.

Michael Yarish/CBS

ACT VI: Tribal: There and Back Again 

Tribal is significantly less exciting than it should be since we go in knowing that Jefra has already unflipped back to her Alliance of Horrors. Still, it’s completely loaded with statements from people like Tony, Woo, and Trish that make me wonder how I haven’t pulled all my hair out yet listening to their atrocious displays of logic.

A frustrated Spencer calls out Tony for breaking promises, to which Tony replies, “I didn’t break promises. I did it for a reason,” which is not a rational excuse nor an acceptable appropriation of logic. You know the days are dark for Spencer when he has to resort to the age-old “If You Keep Him, I’m Voting For Him” threat, which Tasha joins in on, but it doesn’t register, especially not with Woo. “They might vote for him, but the only way he’s going to get there is with the help of us,” Woo says, not realizing that "with the help of" is another way of saying "by completely manipulating."

On the Trish front, it seems that she genuinely thinks that her scolding of toddler Tony did the trick, because she’s proudly beaming, “He said he’s going to stop his crap, and I hope that he heard us.” Tony nods along like a troublemaking 6-year-old being reprimanded for drawing on the walls, all the while fingering the crayons still in his pocket. Tony also explains to Probst, “Jeff, in this game, you have to make power moves, but there’s a time to do those. Right now it would be a reckless move. In this stage of the game we have to stay solid.” Hmm, interesting since that COMPLETELY CONTRADICTS what you just did two days earlier! I feel like I’m taking crazy pills!

Tony also reveals himself to be one of those players who uses fake idols and thinks he’s Sneaky McBrilliant for having done so. Jefra rolls her eyes, as do I. Spencer plays his idol for himself rather than Jeremiah, and although the decision seemed to pain him, it was the better move for him not to risk giving it to Jeremiah and being ousted himself. And thus, we say farewell to Jeremiah/Geremiah/Jeremy, who will no doubt go on to a lucrative career as a...shh...male model.

Sigh. I had hoped that Spencer might have guessed correctly between him and LJ and negated the votes with his idol and bounced them back to Woo. But then Tony might have given his real idol to Woo which would have resulted in a crazy deadlock and a revote that may or may not have ended in a last-minute Jefra flip and Tony's elimination. Now THAT would have been a crazy council! But alas, one can only imagine. [MORNING AFTER EDIT: You really might as well not read this paragraph since you have astutely pointed out that Tony can't give his super-powered idol to Woo, and LJ is most definitely not Jeremiah...although, let's be real, they're basically the same person.]

Dalton should rest easy knowing that he didn’t miss one of the season’s best episodes—but he did miss out on some truly mind-numbing Tony moments and a further exploration into the unbelievable mind of Kass. Next week, it appears that auction time is sending Trish into a much-needed food frenzy, and Spencer is trying to rile up Tony, which is a move we’ve seen before that always seems promising but rarely ends up working, especially for more stubborn players like Tony.

Before I leave you, let me say thanks for letting me indulge in my Survivor love and squat on Dalton’s territory for a week. Stick around for my Q&A with Jeff Probst, and tune into EW’s channel on Sirius XM 105 for my exit interview with ousted Jeremiah. And if you liked my style of recaps that critics have described as “way too long” and “at least it's English,” get at me @MarcSnetiker.

Did the right player go home? Do you wish Jefra hadn’t flipped back? Does Kass annoy you as much as she annoys me? Do you dream of the day when Dalton is returned and you can get this hack recapper off your beloved Survivor? (Don’t worry, I can take the heat.) Sound off in the comments!

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