‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Episode 3 Recap: 3rd Down?

Last Week: In the undercard matches, Holly got the best of Dan with her “Sandy Shoe Submarine” maneuver while NaOnka bested Fabio with her patented “Sock Swipe.” In the main event, Shannon was putting his “Homosexuality Accusation” finishing move on Sash when his tag team partner Chase turned on him and joined the Majority Minority Alliance (man, that’s confusing).

39 Days, 20 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Here are the tribes as they currently stand…

The La Flor Tribe aka The Young Tribe (wearing yellow)

•    Alina – 23, Art Student
•    Benry – 24, Club Promoter
•    Brenda – 27, Paddleboard Company Owner
•    Chase – 24, Race Car Jackman/Country Singer
•    Fabio – 21, Student
•    Kelly B. – 26, Medical Student
•    Kelly S. – 20, Nursing Student
•    NaOnka – 27, P.E. Teacher
•    Sash – 30, Real Estate Broker

The Espada Tribe aka The Older Tribe (wearing blue)

•    Dan – 63, Real Estate Executive
•    Holly – 44, Swim Coach
•    Jane – 56, Dog Trainer
•    Jill – 43, E.R. Doctor
•    Jimmy J. – 67, Former NFL Coach
•    Jimmy T. – 48, Commercial Fisherman
•    Marty – 48, Technology Executive
•    Tyrone – 42, Fire Captain
•    Yve – 41, Homemaker

Quick Note: Jeff Probst has promised us one of the meanest things he’s ever seen on “Survivor” tonight. I’m betting NaOnka tells Fabio the truth about Santa Claus.

We start off back at La Flor camp and the whippersnappers seem to be happy with their decision to send Shannon back to Louisiana.

NaOnka isn’t buying it though, she thinks the rest of the tribe is, “faker than faux fur.” In our pregame interviews she used that exact phrase to describe how she was willing to play the game.

The following morning we meet up with the elderly. Apparently they’re looking for monkeys. Their theory is where there are monkeys, there is sure to be food. Well, that’s Marty’s theory. Jimmy Johnson’s theory is that he can communicate with the monkeys. He hoots and hollers at them, but doesn’t get them to hand over the food.

Marty lets us know that he doesn’t like having a celebrity on his team. I’m not sure I follow his logic. Jimmy’s celebrity doesn’t give him an advantage. If anything it draws focus from other players and allows certain players and alliances to sneak under the radar.

Marty and Jill are next seen discussing strategy, she wants to reveal the idol to the rest of the tribe to gain their trust. That’s different. I kind of like that strategy.

We jump back to La Flor where Fabio is using the scuba mask to blow on the fire again. He tells the rest of the tribe that when he stands up after blowing on the fire he feels dizzy. Have we learned nothing from Michael Skupin?!

Fabio tells us his strategy is to be out-there and crazy. Mission accomplished, my friend.

Back at Espada, Marty shows everyone his immunity idol. It’s shaped like a key. I’m not sure why they didn’t name it the Key of Immunity.

Jimmy T. applauds this bold move…literally. He thinks this makes the tribe five times stronger.

Jill thinks Marty’s stock went up, which is good for her. Jill is smart, she has a power player in her pocket. He can make the moves and if the tribe turns on them, Marty can take the hit.

Next up, Dan lets us know that the conditions are getting the best of him and he’s worried that the tribe is going to think he’s a weak link. He says he’s strong, just not as strong as Tyrone.


Oh, sorry. My Understatement Bell just went off.

Back at La Flor, the Majority Minority Alliance is discussing who to take out next. They’re worried that Alina and Kelly B. might have the hidden immunity idol. A blonde with a purple streak in her hair who I’ve never seen before says she only trusts the core five members of the alliance.

Immunity and Reward Challenge: Both tribes will race into a field to recover 10 tribe-colored barrels. Once they have their barrels they’ll place them in a triangle pattern (similar to bowling pins). Then they’ll try to throw sand bags onto the barrels from a distance. The first tribe to get a bag on all ten barrels wins immunity and a “Survivor” garden that includes spices, fruit and other goodies.

Sadly, this reward does not include delicious Nicaraguan Tona Beer.

Note: XFINITY TV does not encourage drinking.

Medallion of Power Advantage: The mysterious Medallion of Power will utilize its awesome strength to reduce the number of barrels by two.

La Flor elects not to use the MoP.

I spoke with Rob Cesternino from “Survivor: The Amazon” last week. (How’s that for a name drop!) He had an interesting thought that every time you don’t use the MoP it’s hurting you and every time your opponent doesn’t use it it’s helping you. So, it’d make sense to use it every time you have it. I argued that in last week’s Hay Mate challenge, you got a 25% advantage (1 out of 4 balls) and in this challenge you’d only get a 20% advantage (2 out of 10 barrels). I’d save it for the bigger advantages.

But, he’s the “Smartest Player Never to Win ‘Survivor'” and I’m a jerk with a blog, so what do I know?

Jimmy J. jumps into coach mode and tells each player which barrel to go for. He’s drawing up the play like it was NFL game day.

The younger tribe retrieves their barrels first, but just barely. The younger tribe also gets their barrels into place first. Probst gives Dan a hard time about not being very mobile.

Tyrone and Benry start off tossing sand bags for their respective teams. Tyrone jumps out to a big 5 to 2 lead pretty quickly.

Note: They don’t even say Espada or La Flor on the scoreboard.

The younger tribe makes a comeback and ties it at six. Jimmy T. lets Jimmy J. know that he wants into the game. And by “lets Jimmy J. know,” I mean “tells Jimmy J. incessantly.”

“Throw it to Lucas!”

Benry goes on a tear and puts La Flor up nine to seven.

Jimmy J. pulls Tyrone and puts in Jimmy T. but it’s too late, La Flor wins immunity and reward.

As the tykes pick up their reward, NaOnka and Kelly B. both discover an immunity idol clue.

Sure enough, the second the two get back to camp NaOnka pushes Kelly B. over to get the clue. In the ensuing chaos some bananas were squished. Careful ladies, James was voted out over a much less serious banana-related etiquette infraction.

NaOnka follows this up by giving her own audition speech for “Heroes Vs. Villains: Part Deux” by telling us she’ll push Kelly B. so hard her leg will fall off. What’s worse? She didn’t mention which leg.

Back at Espada, Jimmy T. tells everyone that he feels his talents aren’t being properly used. Jimmy J. defends his strategy of sticking with Tyrone in the challenge.

Eventually everyone breaks into groups and starts discussing voting strategies. Marty tells us that he wants Jimmy J. out so the tribe will “Lose their daddy” and everyone will have to come to him. That just sounds creepy.

Jill doesn’t care who goes home as long as it’s Dan, Holly or Jimmy J.

Jimmy T. and Dan are both on board for voting for Jimmy Johnson. Jane and Tryone both seem to be leaning toward Dan.

In other news, Jane and Holly have created some kind of an alliance. Hopefully Holly took more than 3 seconds before deciding on an alliance mate this time.

That night at Tribal Council, Jimmy T. again complains about not being put into the challenge sooner. He also complains about not having an opportunity to lead. Look out, JPro. He may want to host next.

Dan defends his physical prowess saying he’s not the strongest or the weakest. Jill politely disagrees. Jane also points out that Dan has had major knee surgery.

Nobody points out that his alligator shoes are waterlogged. That can’t help.

Jimmy T. claims there are four weak players on the team. Probst asks everyone individually if they think they’re a weak player. The only person to admit to being weak is Jimmy J.

Voting Time: Jimmy T. votes for Jimmy J., Jimmy J. votes for Dan and the rest of the votes aren’t shown.

JPro does some serious tallying and returns. One vote for Jimmy J., one vote for Dan, four votes for Jimmy J. and the third person voted out of “Survivor: Nicaragua” is…Jimmy Johnson.

And I’m not sure, but I thought that I heard the sound of “Taps” being played gently by a distraught CBS executive.

Too soon for “Christmas Story” quotes?

Verdict: We’re getting quite a mix this season. We’ve got Jerry Springer-esque players like NaOnka, Holly and Shannon and some really strong players like Brenda, Jill and Marty. I’m still digging this season.

But wait, what was Probst’s meanest thing ever? NaOnka pushing Kelly B.? Kelly B. wants to be treated like everyone else, and everyone else would’ve been pushed.

Who’s Going to Win? Jill has Marty thinking he’s the puppet master, but she’s the one who figured out the clue and decided to reveal the idol to the tribe. She’s a force.

Power Ranking Results: Coach and Randy called it, they had Jimmy Johnson in spot eighteen. I had him in spot sixteen. So, the current score is Team Dragon Slayer 30, Team Truth Seeker 22.

What Do You Think? Will you stop watching this season now that Jimmy Johnson is gone? Was NaOnka pushing Kelly B. one of the meanest things in “Survivor” history? Would you rather be trapped in a room with NaOnka or Jimmy T.?

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