Survivor season premiere recap: Brain Drain

The Brains tribe makes one stupid move after another, displaying a complete lack of Survivor smarts.
Ep. 01 | Aired Feb 26, 2014

SITTING DOWN ON THE JOB J'Tia didn't exactly make a great first impression

Monty Brinton/CBS

So now it’s time to find out who is on the outs on the Brains tribe. David and Kass decide to get rid of J’Tia. One problem: They then proceed to go and tell her! At least Kass does, saying “Honestly, I’m leaning towards you. Because you haven’t been pulling your weight around camp.” And honestly, that was just really, really stupid. Because now J’Tia tells Tasha and Tasha tells the hairless hunky dude. And really, that’s all it takes. A new plan is hatched to take out David instead.

Off to Tribal Council we go, and a pretty rad Tribal Council set it is: a super cool vertical level hut type of construction (sorry, I’m bad at describing things). But even cooler than that is watching Garrett jump when a spider climbs on his neck and seeing Jeff Probst get absolutely, positively DRENCHED. Now I know why Probst rocks that baseball hat so much because his matted down thunderstorm hair style is not too sweet. Oh, right, the vote out. Sorry, got a bit distracted there. It’s David. He’s done, a victim of his own emotionless start to the game in which he seemed to make very few personal connections. Being cunning doesn’t work if people don’t want to play with you. “Unbelievable,” murmurs the Miami Marlins president once he discovers he is the winner of this season’s Sonja Christopher Golden Ukulele Award, given to each installment’s first boot. (Francesca Hogi is the award’s only two-time winner. Or loser, as it were.)

So that’s gonna do it for tonight’s Survivor premiere but we have plenty of other goodies for you to…wait, what? We have a whole other episode to go? And it is going to involve a contestant discussing the ins and outs — well, mostly outs — of peeing and pooping? Hot damn, let’s go!!!

Episode 2 begins with Garrett still waxed within an inch of his life and lounging in a bed of flowers with his crotch practically hanging out. A very odd confessional setting if I do say so myself. But instead of gloating in the victory of ousting his tribal enemy, Garrett looks depressed. "This is not fun for me right now, I have to be honest” he says. “Manual labor isn’t fun. Starving isn’t fun. It’s not like it’s a cool adventure for me.” And with that 10,000 remote controls smash 10,000 television sets, tossed by fans who have applied over and over again to live out the ultimate adventure on their favorite TV show. Instead, we’re stuck with a bodybuilder who doesn’t even want to be there. Anyone else having Osten Taylor flashbacks right about now? Wow, Courtney Marit and Osten Taylor callbacks in the same recap? Digging deep!

At least Garrett gets up enough energy to do a stupid handshake with Kass and Spencer while forming a new alliance. There are some divisions forming over on the Brawn tribe as well. Former NBA All-Star Cliff Robinson has a fan in Woo, who confesses to having a few of Cliff’s trading cards. So how does Cliff repay him? By capsizing their outrigger. But it’s all in good fun. Not only does Woo — and I do confess to enjoying typing the word "Woo" over and over again; much better than typing Tarzan, Troyzan, Papa Smurf and some of the other ridiculous nicknames over the years — dig Uncle Cliffy, but Lindsay and Sarah do as well. That leaves Trish and Mr. I’m Not a Cop on the outs.

But Tony has a plan to learn all the tribe’s secrets, and it is a fantastically stupid plan. It seems he has constructed something called the “Spy Shack,” which as far as I can tell consists merely of sitting behind some leaves on the other side of the shelter and listening in on people’s conversations. But Tony doesn’t just want to listen in. Apparently he also wants to take over the pride. And then kill the lion of the pride. And then kill the cubs. WHAT?!? Who the hell came up with this plan, Uncle Scar? Are there hyenas involved? Is James Earl Jones going to start speaking from the clouds?

NEXT: Is there anything J’Tia is good at?

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