‘Survivor: H.V.V.’ Episode 4 Recap: The Cowboy Way

Last Week: James flexed, Parvati flirted, and Randy floundered.

39 Days, 20 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Here are the tribes as they currently stand…

The Hero Tribe (wearing blue)

Rupert Boneham – 45
James Clement – 32
Colby Donaldson – 35
Cirie Fields – 39
Amanda Kimmel – 24
James “JT” Thomas Jr. – 25
Tom Westman – 45
Candice Woodcock – 27

The Villain Tribe (wearing red)

Tyson Apostol – 30
Sandra Diaz-Twine – 34
Danielle DiLorenzo – 28
Russell Hantz – 37
Jerri Manthey – 38
“Boston” Rob Mariano – 33
Parvati Shallow – 27
Benjamin “Coach” Wade – 38
Courtney Yates – 28

We start off with the villainous crew arriving home from tribal council. Coach is still upset that Sandra called him out. He lets us know that he may be more emotional than most but he hides it behind his bravado and accomplishments. He expresses his frustration to Tyson and breaks down in tears in a touching moment. Coach eventually tells Tyson that he’s considering quitting.

Tyson wants to help Coach out, so he does a little coaching of his own. He tells Coach not to wear feathers at tribal council and not to tell his stories because people aren’t taking him seriously. That may be the first time they’ve shown Tyson without him making a snarky comment.

The following morning Boston Rob gives Coach a pep talk letting him know that he’s not on the outside of the tribe. This speech helped Coach feel better. Well, I assume he feels better, he started quoting Confucius which is a step in the right direction, right?

Later, tree mail arrives at the Heroes camp.  They’ll get to pick rewards for the upcoming challenge from a Wheel of Fortune-esque display of Sears items.

Sears…Life Well Spent

Reward Challenge: The players will oil themselves up then run and slide down a slip ‘n slide.

A slip ‘n slide?! Nice…call me when there’s an air hockey challenge. I’m awesome at air hockey.

Once they reach the end of the slip ‘n slide they’ll have to grab a numbered ball and shoot it into a basket. The first person to score a basket wins a point. The first team to four wins the items their tribe chose. The Heroes will receive cooking and fishing items. The Villains will receive building tools. One person has to sit out for the Villains, they choose Parvati.

Wow, the players are really oily. They were really muddy last week. What’ll they be rolling around in next week? My money is on jello.

Round 1 – Coach vs. Tom: Both players slide to their balls at the same time, however Coach hits his shot first. Dragon Slayer’s back in the game.

Round 2 – Cirie vs. Russell: Cirie has trouble both slipping and sliding. Russell wins easily.

Round 3 – Candice vs. Courtney: Candice sinks her first shot, winning a point for the Heroes.

Round 4 – Amanda vs. Jerri: An even match down the slip ‘n slide, but Jerri hits her shot first.  Cougar power!

Round 5 – Sandra vs. James: Wow, I hope this turns out better for Sandra than it did for Randy. And…it doesn’t. Sandra doesn’t even get to her ball before James scores.

Round 6 – Rupert vs. Danielle: Is it me, or does Danielle always look scared? Hmmm…maybe she should be, cause Rupert and his broken toe just beat her.

Next point wins reward.

Round 7 – Colby vs. Tyson: A bit of a back and forth, but Tyson manages to score first. The Villains win reward.

As the Villains are opening their Sears gift package, they discover a clue to a hidden immunity idol. The tribe decides to find the idol and throw it away because whoever finds it will have a target on their back. Russell, staying true to form, has other ideas.

Russell tells everyone that he’s going for a walk with all of the subtlety of a jackhammer. Boston Rob sends Sandra to go spy on him. Sure enough, she catches him searching.

The Villains decide that Russell should be the next to go because they had all decided not to look for the idol. A frustrated Boston Rob calls Russell a “Hobbit on crack.” A more accurate description may be a hobbit under the influence of the One Ring.

Don’t judge me.

Meanwhile, the Heroes find an immunity idol clue in the coffee they won at the last immunity challenge. The Heroes take a different approach than the Villains, they all go searching.

During the fracas (or was it a fray?) Tom manages to find the idol and stash it in his sock. However, Amanda saw him smuggle it away. Tom’s OK with this, because he’s going to use it to buy his way into the alliance.

Immunity Challenge: One person from each tribe will be strapped into an American Gladiators-esque ball. The person in the ball will have to tell his blindfolded tribe mates where to push the ball as they maneuver it through a winding path. Once they get to the end, the person in the ball will have to tell four other blindfolded tribe mates how to maneuver a ball through another maze.

Note: This is the same challenge they never got to finish in Samoa because Good Russell passed out. Poor Good Russell.

The Villains have to sit two people, they choose Courtney and Sandra. The Heroes will sit Cirie.

Tom goes inside the ball for the Heroes, while Boston Rob takes the lead for the Villains.

Coach and Tyson push Boston Rob to the end of the path well before the Heroes. However, during the maze portion the Heroes are able to catch up. It’s very close in the end, but the Villains end up winning it.

When it’s over J-Pro compliments Boston Rob on stepping up into the risky position of being the team talker.

Wow, Boston Rob is getting the best edit ever.

Back at the Heroes camp, Tom and Colby are worried that one of them will be the next to go.

Meanwhile, Candice and Cirie are performing complex mathematics to describe how half the alliance will vote for Tom while the other half will vote for Colby to flush the idol out.

Amanda and JT are having a conference of their own. JT says he’d like to have Tom and his idol in his alliance. He’d also rather send Candice home.

Later, a larger meeting takes place between Tom, JT, James, and Amanda. Tom even offers to give the immunity idol to them if they want it.

Tom is smart.

Amanda meets up with Cirie afterwards to discuss strategy. Cirie thinks it’s foolish to keep Tom around because he’s a threat. It looks like Amanda and the rest of her alliance agree with her.

Tom and JT discuss this development. Tom thinks if JT flips his vote and if Tom plays his idol that they could boot Cirie. JT isn’t sure if he should go along with it or keep the status quo.


That night at tribal council, J-Pro asks JT if it’s smart to vote strong people out because they’re in another alliance. He thinks it’s way too early for that.

Rupert wants to keep the tribe strong, but he’s going to stick with his alliance even if he disagrees with the vote. Jeff gives him a hard time for keeping his word when it’s costing his tribe.

James says he’s going to base his vote on wanting to keep the tribe strong. Tom and Colby don’t think the way he’s going to vote will help them win challenges.

Voting Time: Candice votes for Tom, Tom votes for Cirie, and JT draws a “C.”


Before J-Pro can read the votes, Tom pulls the immunity idol out of his sock and plays it. Probst accepts the idol, then begins reading the votes. Three votes for Tom (which don’t count), two votes for Colby, two votes for Cirie…and the fourth person voted out of “Survivor: Heroes Vs. Villains” is…Cirie!

JT makes a move!

Verdict: Was that a smart move by JT? Probably not, the other Heroes still have a numbers lead. But, it makes for an interesting show. Maybe they can get Rupert to switch since he’s waffling.  Anywho, “Heroes Vs. Villains” has been really entertaining so far.

Who’s Going to Win? I’m solidly in Team Cougar right now. Jerri’s in good with Coach and Coach is apparently in good with Boston Rob.

Power Rankings Update:
Who’s laughing now, Charlie Herschel?! He had Cirie in spot 3 while I had her in spot 16. So, the current score is All-Stars 24, Team Gordon 43.

More “Survivor” Fun: Check out my exit interview with Randy Bailey and the latest batch of game insight from “Survivor: The Amazon” champion Jenna Morasca.

What Do You Think?
Did JT make the right move? Did Russell sign his own death warrant? Did you feel bad for Coach?

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