It didn’t take long during Survivor 42 episode 9 for us to get a clear indicator of what we were about to see: Scrambling, and plenty of it.
Early on during the episode, we learned that the merge tribe was going to be split into two. From there, those groups each had a separate immunity challenge. Two people were immune, and the overall winner who stayed on the water platform the most got food for their group. Not only that, but they’d go to Tribal second and have the knowledge of what happened first.
Hai and Jonathan were the two immunity winners, and the latter managed to secure food for his group.
We’re going to get into these two groups separately; things really don’t get that complicated until we get to the second part.
Group 1: Hai, Rocksroy, Romeo, Mike, and Omar. On paper, this felt like a really easy decision. Romeo has been a target for the past couple of weeks, and he just angered Hai the day before. Yet, Omar saw an opportunity here to take out Rocksroy, someone who felt a little more unmovable in the game. He got Romeo on board and, ironically, Hai was the swing vote. Would he stick with the person who he just wanted out? Also, Mike doesn’t like the move.
At this Tribal, Mike went with Hai and the blindside was locked in: Rocksroy is out of the game. So much for that big guys’ alliance everyone was talking about, right?
Group 2: Lindsay, Jonathan, Tori, Drea, and Maryanne. After trying to avoid big moves for a while, Jonathan came up with something big: Targeting Drea and flushing out the idol. He told Maryanne and she was on board … at least until he said that Drea will target Maryanne. Why didn’t he just tell Drea to vote Tori if he wanted to do that?
Jonathan annoyed everyone with pushing so hard, but he was safe and nothing could be done. That’s when we saw a dramatic Tribal Council game-changer. After seeing Rocksroy on the jury, Drea made it clear that she was going to play her idol. She wanted to ensure that there were not three Black castaways voted off in a row at the merge. Maryanne, meanwhile, made it clear that she would not vote Drea. This entire conversation frustrated Jonathan, who came across as extremely tone-deaf as to how Drea was feeling. Eventually he claimed to understand more, but our issue with him is still that it was a lot about how he felt as opposed to what Drea and Maryanne were going through.
Maryanne opted to take a stand with Drea, and both of them played their idols in anticipation of any vote. The game quickly evolved, and it became a choice between Lindsay or Tori. Tori tried to play her shot in the dark at what essential became a public vote with the players not going up to the booth; it didn’t help, and she was voted out.
Did Survivor handle this correctly?
We think they leaned into what felt right for them at this particular moment, and we can’t blame them for that. These are extremely sensitive matters, and because of that, they chose to roll with things as they unfolded. We’re sure the internet will have a million opinions about the Tribal, but if it was clear that Drea and Maryanne were playing their idols, there was no point voting in the traditional way.
What do you think about the events of Survivor 42 episode 9?
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