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'Survivor' recap: It's just emotions, taking me over

December 16, 2010 |  8:00 am

It's like we're on a '50s TV production — sponsored by Sprint! “Yo, guys, what’s up? It’s Fabio. How was Wednesday night’s ‘Survivor’ for you? That was a rhetorical question.”

The last new episode of the season before Sunday’s three-hour finale event was exciting. And stupid. And confusing. But mostly emotional, like the Bee Gees or Destiny's Child. You see all the smiles on everyone in the picture? Yeah, they didn't last long.

It was the usual loved-ones episode we've seen before, but I can't remember such defiant stands and how-DARE-yous one before. Especially in a season that has ebbed and flowed like this one. But let’s cover our bases.

After voting out Benry, Fabio learns how Benry was actually trying to get rid of him, and how dumb/out of it everyone else thinks he is. Which is what he wanted, right? Hol' up, ’cause here comes Chase promising his first-born son to take yet another person on the reward trip he’ll likely win. This time it’s Fabio saying how much he wants to go, it’s been so long, and that he, Chase and Sash both love their mothers so. This one was very predictable.

Why was there so much mother love? Well, the castaways got the brand spankin’ new Sprint Evo phone, y’all! 4G tree mail, y’all! And said phone included video messages for everyone from parents and children — some of whom make it to the island to compete with the castaways for a dinner at sea as a reward.

The most surprising reactions were probably Fabio’s to his mom and Dan’s with one of his sons. Lots of tears. Anyway, Chase's mom puts together a puzzle first, giving them the win, and Chase picks Sash and Holly and their loved ones to accompany them. Jane knew it’d happen, Dan cusses under his breath over it, while Fabio tearfully lets Chase have it. “You knew I’d pick you! You knew I loved my mom!” Awk. Ward.

As Chase, Sash and their mothers, and Holly and her husband, enjoy time just off the shore, Fabio, Dan and Jane are actually looking like the orphans looked over and forgotten at camp. Dan says Chase has no use for them. Fabio doesn’t know why Chase picks Holly so much, or why he told him he’d pick him.

That’s when things got more serious. Jane’s face showed her slow realization that the tide was turning against her. So even when Fabio childishly went after Chase at night as the reward winners crawled back under the tarp, it had nothing on Jane putting everything on the table with her former alliance later.

At the immunity challenge, everyone had to follow a roped obstacle course while blindfolded, feel out the symbols on a shield, return to their bases and place the symbols in the right places — while still blindfolded. Jane and Fabio both had the most to lose, feeling the pinch, but Jane appeared lost several times. Fabio won, and our North Cackalacky homegirl would begin to crumble. And just in case you’ve asked yourself: what about Dan (oh, Dan)?  I can only hope you’re asking that rhetorically.

Approaching the three reward winners the next day, Jane asked if they all were still a tight four-person group. Silence. Then she asked if they would be voting out Dan, since Fabio –- up until then presumed to be going home — wasn’t going anywhere. Chase, feeling pressured by everyone else, admits that they’re considering sending her home. Jane glares, background music swells. Sash tells her no one feels they can beat her. Jane not-so-subtly flips him off. And that was just the start.

No more fire for you!
Here’s where most will disagree over Jane. Was she a great player, or too emotional at her core? Because later at camp, the woman grabbed two buckets of water and doused the fire. “By God, I started it, I can put it out.” That was nothing surprising coming from a woman who stowed away food (albeit more slickly than NaOnka). But while I at one time found her endearing as the only personality on the show we’d seen this season, she’s now just that bitter player who hates being played.

She did provide for another interesting tribal council, holding nothing back and putting Chase, Holly and Sash on Front Street. They had Na quietly going crazy over in the jury. And while Jane and Jeff Probst seemed to make it clear that she, Dan and Fabio should come together, vote for Holly and force a tie, that seemed a little silly to me. And apparently I wasn't alone — just look at the video below.

Jane voted for Sash?! All right, I’m through with her. We’re almost at the end, amigos! Are you excited to see a winner or because a new season is that much closer? Do you have anyone you prefer to see win or lose? Also, I’ll be at the live finale Sunday, so shoot me questions for any and all if you’ve got ’em.

— Anthony Williams

Photos, from top: The remaining castaways watch video messages from loved ones; Jane pouts after dousing the tribe's fire as Fabio covers his eyes. Credit: CBS.


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