While there was a tribe swap this week, it didn’t happen until Episode 7. At this point, the Champions have been losing the immunity challenges since Episode 2- leaving the tribes at a 7 to 11 ratio. With this, the tribes were swapped and there were some drastic changes.
For the Contenders- Andy, Baden, Daisy, Hannah, John, Sam, and Sarah all swapped over to the Champions
For the Champions- Abbey, Janine, Pia, Ross and Simon all swapped over to the Contenders
This left the non-swapped original members for each tribe in the minority. However with each tribe at nine, it evened things up. It was fun seeing the new tribes interact and see the swapped members react to their new beaches.
For the Champions, I’m going to pick Daisy. The farmer has been shown in previous weeks as this relaxed almost hippy chick. Last week, it was established that she was tight with Shaun. With Shaun still on the Contenders tribe, Daisy was separated from her closest ally. The main reason why I’m picking Daisy this week is because of the strategic shift in power she caused. With Luke and David the only original Champions on the new tribe, it seemed as if the seven swapped Contenders could take them out easily. However, things didn’t work out that way. More on that later.
For the Contenders, I’m going to pick Harry. In previous weeks, Harry has been in the background with several confessionals. This week, however, is his best. When the new Contenders tribe were going around doing introductions, Harry figured that he’d be able to sway some people his way if he opened up about his life. With that, he told the tribe that he has a baby boy named Oscar waiting for him back home. Hearing this touched everyone- especially the women on the tribe. However, Harry later revealed in a confessional that he doesn’t have a son- explaining he made it up to gain sympathy from his tribemates. I can see Harry being a fun villain to watch similar to Jonny Fairplay or Tyson Apostol. In Episode 8, Harry was able to find an idol- giving him the chance to take out one of the Champions swapped over.
My favorite challenge from this week is easily the reward challenge from Episode 6. In this challenge, the contestants competed in a tug-of-war styled challenge in which they had to pull a heavy post- trying to break a wooden board on the opposing tribe’s side. The first tribe with three points won the challenge- which ended up being the Champions. The reward was a food reward of burgers and ice cold beer. In a twist, Jonathan allowed the Champions to pick a contestant from the Contenders to join them on the reward. The tribe picked Baden, who was then asked to pick a second person. Baden chose Shaun considering his strong performance in the challenge.
I liked this challenge because I don’t think it’s ever been done in the US version. One of my many issues with the US version is the lack of creativity in the challenges. There’s nothing unique about them and they’re easily forgettable. Something as simple as this is fun to watch, especially considering this challenge really got down to the wire with a 2-2 tie.
In Episode 6, Andrew “ET” Ettingshausen was the sixth person voted out of the game. Despite his strong performance in the immunity challenge, the NRL legend was not in the “fun” alliance of six. With that, he and Simon were on the outs. Considering ET’s age of 53, this is probably was ultimately led to his elimination. This was not an easy one for the Champions as they actually liked ET. Someone had to go and it ended up being him.
In Episode 7, Sam Schoers became the seventh person voted out of the game- as well as the second Contender eliminated. As mentioned before, the new Champions tribe consisted of seven Contenders and two original Champions. After overhearing Andy tell his alliance that Shaun had the idol, Daisy wasn’t happy to see Andy throw her ally under the bus like that. She approached Luke and David, asking if they’d want to align. Along with John and Baden, the five had the majority and voted out the VIP Gaming Manager. It’s hard to say what got Sam eliminated from the game. This might be due to the fact that in her seven episodes of the season, Sam did NOT receive any confessionals. If anything, she was probably seen as a threat nor was she interested in flipping on her alliance. Still, It’s a shame that Sam didn’t get any confessionals.
In Episode 8, Sarah Ayles became the eighth person voted off. The 45-year-old cleaner shined last week with her survival in the Boxing Day Tsunami of 2004 being highlighted. While Sarah was well respected by her tribemates, she was a physical liability. If the tribe wanted to start winning challenges, Sarah was the one that had to go.
This was another good week for AU. I’ve been enjoying this season so far. For next week, it looks like we’re getting two episodes- reverting back to the way it was last year. However unlike last year, the episodes will air on Sunday and Monday- as opposed to Monday and Tuesday.
I’ll see you all next week!
I'm a writer/journalist with a passion for music and pop culture. Having graduated from King's College in Wilkes-Barre, PA in 2014, I've been looking for a platform in which I can share my passions. Since 2009, I've been posting to my own blog- The Walrus' Music Blog- via Blogger. I'm also the author of two self-published books, "The Camp: Stories from the Summer" and "The College: Stories from King's." Together, the two books cover the story of my life from 2004 to 2014. I've been lucky enough to interview several of my favorite musicians over the years and go to concerts from time to time. I'm also very devoted to the CBS reality TV show Survivor, which I started watching in 2002 when its fourth season started. I currently live in New Jersey.