Survivor Cagayan: Brawn vs. Brains vs. Beauty – Episode 5 – Recap and Discussion (UPDATED)

After Tribal Council, Trish decides she wants to clear the air about blindsiding Cliff. I don’t know what good that would do, but Lindsey is too pissed to listen anyway. Trish then decides to tell Lindsey that she “respects” her as a member of the tribe, but she doesn’t like her. I’m not even seeing much respect, to tell you the truth.

Lindsey screams back that she will never be on Trish’s tribe. She leaves the camp then and there — clad only in her bikini.

When we come back from the commercial, Lindsey is sitting alone on the beach. Jeff appears. “I got a call that you needed to talk to me,” he says, dropping to sit at her feet.

LIndsey explains that she can’t stay. She needs the million dollars “more than anybody,” but she’s afraid that she’ll flip out if she doesn’t get away from Trish. She doesn’t want her child to see that later on. Jeff asks her whether she wants to say goodbye to the tribe. She tells him it’s best if she takes her curtsey here and now.

So, Lindsey is erased from history, and Jeff makes a midnight visit to Solana to explain. Trish is sorry, but not sorry. LJ calls Lindsey a big zit, waiting to explode. Tony later interviews that he’s happy. As far as he’s concerned, it was a “two for one.” But Woo is now in a bad position. With Lindsey gone, he’s the next on the chopping block.

Woo redeems himself, however, at the reward challenge. The contest is somewhat new — but geared toward the martial artist. Each round is a duel between one member from each tribe. They both hold a small pedestal with an idol on it. The goal is to knock your opponent’s idol off before your own. Last idol to hit the beach wins a point.

Because there are five members of Solana, Alexis and Kass sit out for Aparri. And, because they play to four points, Spence and Woo get paired up twice. They are both well-matched. The first time, Spence lunges at Woo while throwing his idol high into the air. Because his arcs up, Woo’s idol hits the beach first. The second time, Woo lunges first and Spence’s idol falls first. That’s the match point, so Solana wins the reward.

Which is to conduct a raid on Aparri. Tony and Woo are selected to go, with a note they will read when they arrive at Aparri. The note instructs them to choose a few things either/or. Food or fishing gear. Comfort or tarp. They choose fishing gear and comfort.

The note also gives them a clue to a hidden immunity idol on their beach. Which isn’t there any more. But Tony’s got a better idea. He rolls up the note, ties it in a bow, and hands it to Jeremiah, saying he was instructed to choose an Aparri tribe member to gift with a clue.

As Tony hopes, this targets Jeremiah. Alexis warns Spencer that Jeremiah will flip when the tribe merge. She and Spencer confront Jeremiah and he tells them the truth — the clue wasn’t for their beach, but for the Solana beach. Tony was pulling a con. Alexis doesn’t buy it all. Spencer doesn’t either, but he’s not sure Alexis is any more trustworthy. He realizes she’s smarter than she tries to let on.

Meanwhile, in Solana (where someone has written “SHAME ON YOO, LINDSEY” in the sand), Tony is pretty pleased with himself. He’s so happy, he tells everyone how he pretended to be in construction, instead of telling them he was a cop. Or, as LJ puts it, “In order to show us that he’s trustworthy, Tony tells us that he’s lied…. Different.” LJ decides he needs to be on his toes with this tribe. Trish, on the other hand, cracks a joke about actually being a man.

I can see why Lindsey gave up a million dollars.

Immunity Challenge time!

It’s a long, arduous, puzzling challenge. The tribes start out by building a staircase out of giant knitting needles, which Aparri rocks at because their strategy is to place every needle in the correct position to begin with. Solana, meanwhile decides to place their needles and then decide which ones are taller and which are shorter.

The tribe then goes through a scaffold maze, ending with a rope gate that must be untied. Aparri makes it through quicker, but Woo unties his knot before Sarah. Still the tribes are neck in neck going down the bumpy bamboo slide.

Next is a rope maze with a key. The key has to be moved along the rope. Jeremiah gets through much faster than Tony, and he’s released a machete and chopped through the rope before Tony unlocks the machete padlock.

So, Aparri is a few second ahead as Spencer and Alexis start on a wooden puzzle, which will reveal a set of numbers. They get the first number, which Tony helpfully shouts to Woo and LJ, who are just starting on their puzzle. With that tip, LJ and Woo find the second number and quickly get the third as well. After that, they use the numbers to solve a combination lock and raise their flag. As they win, Tony shouts out, “Top Five, Babyl!” in triumph.

While waiting for her first Tribal Council, Sarah notes that Tony’s “Top Five” chant means that he’s not waiting for her to rejoin his alliance. He’s moved on and bonded with his new family. She decides that she will do the same.

Alexis interprets the chant differently. She decides that Tony’s Top Five is the original Brawn tribe — plus Jeremiah. She tries to nail down Sarah and the Brains, while they communally bathe in the ocean. They agree, but Spencer, patriarch of the brain trust, lets us know that they haven’t made up their minds.

The Brains hold their own private summit to decide between Alexis and Jeremiah. They’re too smart to let us know what they decide. But Kass does give us her take on the situation. “The Brains just needed a body. We found our zombies and now we’re in.”

At the Tribal Council, Jeff notes that there are three former Brains, three former Beauties… and Sarah. The brains confirm that they are sticking together. Morgan, however, allows that she and Jeremiah have had their bumps. Jeff asks Kass if she finds that comforting. Kass agrees that it does and remarks that the Brains’ experience brought them together. The Beauties’ experiences drove them apart.

Sarah tells Jeff that she figured out at the challenge that she’s out of the Brawn tribe. This is now her tribe. Alexis reminds them that anyone can reconnect with someone from their old tribe — once the merge takes place. Then she mentions Jeremiah being pulled aside by Tony to receive his gift clue.

The tribe collectively agrees that trust is the most important factor at this point. Spencer notes that, if they make the wrong decision, they’ll end up 11th, 10th, 9th, 8th, and 7th place.

The vote is taken, and Alexis is the unlucky blindsidee. She breaks into sobs as Jeff snuffs her torch, and cries all the way into her final words interview. She really loved the game and is horribly disappointed to leave so early.

Next week: The merge! And Sarah realizes that she can swing either way.

What did you think about Lindsey’s exit? Shameful or better than throwing all the rice in the fire? Let me know in the comments!