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Survivor: Blood Vs. Water – ‘Skin of My Teeth’

Vytas and Tyson, my two favorites.
Vytas and Tyson, my two favorites.

At the end of last week’s episode, “Swoop in for the Kill” (you can find the full recap here), Galang pulled off a huge blindside (saving my boy, Vytas), sending Laura B. to Redemption Island to compete in the final pre-merge challenge against Laura M. and John. The winner would return to the game, with the other two being sent home. Aras was still feeling in control of the game, despite the fact that his tribemates were plotting against him behind his back. Meanwhile, his brother Vytas continued to charm his way right through the middle of an all-woman alliance.

We were left with the tribes looking like this:

Tadhana                            

Gervase Peterson
Aras Baskauskas
Tyson Aposto
Ciera Eastin
Hayden Moss
Caleb Bankston

Galang

Katie Collins
Vytas Baskauskas
Tina Wesson
Monica Culpepper

Redemption Island

Laura Boneham
John Cody
Laura Morett

At Galang, Vytas felt confident in the tight alliance that he had now forged his way into, alongside Monica, Tina, and Tina’s daughter, Katie. Their plan was to pull in Aras and Gervase and have a majority alliance of six once the merge arrived. Tina made sure to let everyone know that Monica was #5 over Gervase, which Monica seemed to take as a slight, though she hid her emotions well. I personally think Tina was putting Monica in a great spot, as she would be the necessary tie-breaker once it got down to that proposed final five. She could basically pick her poison from there. Maybe she missed that aspect.

At the Redemption Island challenge, Jeff Probst announced that Laura M., Laura B., and John would be hanging on a pole, ajohn challenge that historically favors the tough, smaller female, giving Laura M. the best advantage. They were also told that the winner would be returning to the game, while the other two would be sent home for good. John’s size and weight brought an early end to his chances, though he was the one who seemed to dominate the Redemption Island challenges from very early on. Sometimes life isn’t fair. Laura B. never really had a shot, being both physically larger and weaker than her counterpart, and so it was no surprise that she couldn’t outlast Laura M. The merge immediately followed Laura M.’s return to the game. She was then given the clue to the hidden Immunity Idol, which she continued the trend of burning despite the fact that she could have kept it for herself.

The merged tribe hit the beach with a picnic, and stuffed their mouths while strategies were being formed in the remaining players’ minds. Laura M.’s hope was to join Tina and Katie, and Aras and Vytas, and keep the three pairs alive in the game, Lauragiving them a six-to-five advantage over the rest of the field. I was surprised to see her want to play with Tina and Aras after her former tribe had sent her to Redemption Island, but it was a sound idea nonetheless. Her daughter, however, had other plans, wanting to stick to her alliance of Tyson, Gervase, Caleb, and Hayden. Laura M. loved it and was on board. The strategizing didn’t stop there, however, as Vytas and Aras set their sights on Laura M., hoping their connection to Gervase – and, at Aras’ suggestion, Tyson – was intact.

Meanwhile, Tyson set off in pursuit of the hidden Immunity Idol, with the little information he had left from the original clue that John had received from Candice very early on. And he found it. Tyson is absolutely in the top spot to win this game, if things break the right way, of course (no pun intended for the man with the broken wing).

Monica then approached Tyson letting him know she was slated for the final five, with Tyson on the outs. Tyson, while trying not to dig his eyes out with a rusty spoon, seemed to pull her over, assuring her that the final three would be the two of them along with Gervase, though it was uncertain if she really trusted him.

The first Individual Immunity challenge tested everyone’s memory skills. Vytas, Aras, Gervase, Laura M., and Ciera all advanced to the second round. Laura M., Ciera, and Gervase fell one by one, leaving the Baskauskas brothers to duke it out. Vytas managed to outdo his brother, winning an immunity that might have cost Aras his place in the game.

Back at camp, Aras lined six people up to vote for Laura M., with three others voting for her daughter Ciera in the event that Laura M. played a hidden Immunity Idol. Laura M. continued to throw suggestions to her daughter, which began to eat away at Ciera, who wanted to play her own game. The 11 castaways headed off to Tribal Council unsure if everyone was on the same page or not, leading to a pretty exciting Tribal. Would the three pairs vote together? Would Aras swing the Laura M. vote? Would Tyson and Gervase hold together to vote out the Alpha Male and former winner Aras? In the end, Tyson continued to assert himself as the player to beat by removing one of his biggest threats, and Aras was sent to Redemption Island, which, unfortunately, is still in play. I have to admit it really hurt to see him go. I really enjoyed the brotherly love he and Vytas had for each other. He left a total class act, as you would have imagined, advising his brother to have lots of fun – though it seems Vytas’ game is on the ropes now, sadly, and it might not be long before both Baskauskas brothers end up on Redemption Island.

Next week on Survivor, it appears that Tina goes off on Tyson, which makes the least amount of sense. It was Monica that she had the tightest alliance with, and Gervase beyond that. Her plan was to keep Tyson out of the final six, so why be bitter that he got to you and yours first? If that’s the case, I’m going to lose some respect for one of the games all-time most respectable players. Nobody likes a bitter bitch, so let’s hope her venom was aimed at one of the other two, and the edit just shows Tyson standing up for them. We also get to watch them eat disgusting critters.

My Current Top Five Power Rankings for Survivor: Blood Vs. Water

  1. Tyson Aposto
  2. Gervase Peterson
  3. Monica Culpepper
  4. Hayden Moss
  5. Vtyas Baskauskas (I know he is now a long shot, but I’m keeping him here only because if he gets to the end, no one can beat him. Hey, did anyone think he’d be able to break up an all-woman alliance… TWICE? He stays until he’s gone.)

My Previous Top Five Power Rankings for Survivor: Blood Vs. Water

Episode Seven:

  1. Tyson Apostol
  2. Vytas Baskauskas
  3. Gervase Peterson
  4. Monica Culpepper
  5. Tina Wesson

Episode Six:

  1. Tyson Apostol
  2. Vytas Baskauskas
  3. Gervase Peterson
  4. Monica Culpepper
  5. Aras Baskauskas

Episode Five:

  1. Tyson Apostol
  2. Vytas Baskauskas
  3. Monica Culpepper
  4. Gervase Peterson
  5. Aras Baskauskas

Episode Four:

  1. Tyson Apostol
  2. Vytas Baskauskas
  3. Monica Culpepper
  4. Gervase Peterson
  5. Aras Baskauskas

Episode Three:

  1. Vytas Baskauskas
  2. Monica Culpepper
  3. Tyson Apostol
  4. Aras Baskauskas
  5. Gervase Peterson

Episode Two:

  1. Vytas Baskauskas
  2. Tyson Apostol
  3. Monica Culpepper
  4. Gervase Peterson
  5. Aras Baskauskas

Episode One:

  1. Vytas Baskauskas
  2. Tyson Apostol
  3. Laura Morett
  4. Caleb Bankston
  5. Monica Culpepper

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Written by Mark Johnson

Lover of all things film and Oscar. Fantasy sports’ equivalent of George Steinbrenner. Your very own Han Solo, making friends all over the movie-loving galaxy in spite of himself. When he’s not ranking just about everything or dominating boardgames, Mark is breaking down the Oscar race 24/7 with Rain Man-like stats and knowledge. In his downtime, you can find him commiserating with other Northeast Ohio sports fans because a hero isn’t complete without a little heartbreak. If Game of Thrones, Lost, Breaking Bad, Mad Men, and Survivor are your style, then congratulations, you have something in common with this inglourious basterd.

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