Australian Survivor continued this with another week of three episodes. With the merge happening this week, the individual game has started. While it feels like the season is going by too quickly, this is still a great season from the Aussies.
While the tribes did merge this week, the merge didn’t happen until Episode 14. With that, the first two episodes this week were the last two of the pre merge portion of the game. As far as the episodes, they were all good. At this point, I feel like we know who everyone is.
One thing I’d like to mention is the pacing of the season. Personally, I’m not liking how this season seems to be rushing the episodes. With last year, we had two episodes per a week for the most part. This year, we’ve been getting three episodes a week. While it’s all been good, I feel like they could’ve spaced these out. If the season continues at the rate its going, the season could be ending September 10. With that aside, I’ve really been enjoying this season. Overall, I feel the pre-merge this season is better than last year.
Stand Out Contestants
For this week, I’m going to highlight just one contestant.
My pick for this week is John. Throughout the season, John has been a fun side character. We’ve gotten a nice handful of confessionals and camp scenes from him. I can’t count how many times he’s done so but it does feel like at least once every week, John will be shown skinny dipping and/or flashing his ass.
This week, John’s love for Mexican parmas was highlighted. While this was mentioned in previous episodes, the editors seemed to have fun with this love of John’s this week. At the beginning of Episode 12, we were taken to the Champions camp at night. As everyone was laying down in the shelter, Shaun and Daisy asked for John to describe what a Mexican parma as erotically as possible. As John described his favorite dish in great detail, the editors added some sexy funk music in the background. For the reward challenge that same episode, production went out of their way and decided to make the reward Mexican parmas for the tribe that won. It’s fun to see production join in on the fun and literally cater to the contestants like this. While it does not top the comedy gold of David’s popcorn scene last week, I still enjoyed this.
My favorite challenge this week was, hands down, the first post merge reward challenge. The challenge was, more or less, a variation of the classic challenge When In Rains It Pours. In this challenge, contestants must hold up one of their arms- with their wrists tethered to a rope that’s attached to a bucket filled with water. If the contestant should lower their arm or even flinch in the slightest way, the water will dump on the contestant- kicking them out of the challenge. The last one standing wins the challenge. For this variation of the challenge, contestants had held onto a weighted bag instead of being tethered.
What made me love this challenge so much is due to the fact that Jonathan tempted the contestants to step down for meals and other rewards. This is something that the US version hasn’t done in a long time and it’s something that I miss. Seeing AU do it again was fun to watch. I especially loved it when Jonathan tempted the contestants with a Mexican parma, when John had already dropped out for spaghetti and meatballs. In the end, Daisy won reward in the form of a crate that Jonathan didn’t reveal the contents of. He only hinted that it was the perfect kit to help get them through the merge. Daisy later looked in the crate and discovered she had won ALL of the meals and rewards that Jonathan had tempted contestants with.
Voted Off (and medically evacuated)
While another three people went this week, only two of them were properly voted off. For the first time in the revival show’s history, someone was medically evacuated from the game.
In Episode 12, Matt Farrelly became the 11th person voted out of the game. With the former Champions still having the majority, it was either going to be Matt or Harry that went. Considering he was dangerous to keep in the game, the former Champions wanted Harry out. However, they had it planned in the event Harry played an idol- there would be a few vote placed for Matt. In the end, Harry and Janine each played their idols. Harry was saved again, leaving the vote tied between Matt and Pia. Given that Matt was an original Contender, he was voted off in the revote.
In Episode 13, Ross Clarke-Jones was medically evacuated from the game after being injured in the immunity challenge. During the challenge, there was a portion of the challenge that involved the contestants having to swing from one platform to another by grabbing onto a rope. When Ross grabbed onto the rope, the rope snapped off- causing Ross to fall to the ground and fracture one of his legs. Jonathan stopped the challenge and the medical team removed him from the challenge. After more check ups and examinations, the medical team deemed that Ross’ injuries were too severe to continue. Ross, now in crutches, was able to say his goodbyes to everyone. Getting med-evac’d is a terrible way to go out and it unfortunately happened to Ross.
In Episode 14, Andy Meldrum became the first person voted off the merged Soli Bula tribe- as well as the 12th person voted out of the game. Coming into the game, Andy wanted to play the most strategic game anyone has ever played. In the end, the marketing executive came off as embarrassingly bad. He was shown to be shady in the previous weeks- whether it be him throwing Sarah under the bus or trying to sabotage a blindside of David. This week, Andy started to decline. During the immunity challenge in Episode 12, Andy tried to throw the challenge when he and Baden were left to solve the puzzle at the end- in an effort to save the original Contenders. The Champions tribe picked up on this pretty quickly. Andy proved to be untrustworthy, which led to him being unanimously voted out. In a great payoff, Andy was the one who came up with the merged tribe name Soli Bula- which he told his tribemates meant “to welcome together” in Fijian. In a confessional, Andy admitted he lied to the tribe- revealing Soli Bula meant “sacrifice.” I’m pretty sure that Andy had no intentions of being the sacrifice.
While not my favorite week of the season, this was still a solid week from the Aussies. Now that we’re in the post merge portion of the game, it’s every person for themselves now.
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.