3 episodes into Heroes, Healers and Hustlers, Survivor opted to activate one of its most popular twists: the tribe switches. With 6 Healers, 5 Heroes and 4 Hustlers remaining, the survivors arrived to a reward challenge in episode 4 with Probst telling them all “drop your buffs.” The 14 remaining players drew new buffs, and were assigned to 3 new tribes by chance. With the tribes completely reshuffled, old relationships were split up and new relationships were built, setting the stage for the next portion of the game.
On the new Levu tribe, Hustler Devon found himself as the man in the middle between two pairs: Heroes Alan and Ashley, and Healers Joe and Desi. However, Joe’s aggressive actions caused Devon to sway to the Heroes side, and after they lost the fourth immunity challenge, Devon and the two Heroes had the clear numbers. However, Joe had something the others did not, which was a hidden immunity idol. Prepared to play it for either himself or Desi, tribal council became filled with drama with Joe and Alan arguing. Once the votes were in, Joe made his decision, and opted to play his idol for himself. His decision was correct, and he managed to nullify all votes against him, and he and Desi’s two votes sent Hero Alan packing, blindsiding him, Ashley and Devon. With the tribe now clearly 2 v 2, the new vote was sure to be a tie. However, all 4 avoided the next two tribals, as they managed to win the next two immunity challenges.
On the new Soko tribe, Healer Roark was the odd one out, with Heroes Chrissy and JP and Hustlers Ryan and Ali. However, while Ali gravitated towards Roark, Ryan and Chrissy formed their own bond, adding JP to their ranks. With Ryan and Chrissy in control, Ryan betrayed his former Hustler ally, Ali, and after losing the challenges in episode 5 and 6, they sent home the first Healer, Roark, and then Ali. With only 3 standing, Ryan and Chrissy’s strong knowledge of the game, and a loyal ally in JP, they seemed poised to go deep in the game, and are willing to cut anyone to do so.
On the new Yawa tribe, original Healers Jessica, Cole and Mike enjoyed a numbers advantage over Hero Ben and Hustler Lauren. In addition, this group of 5 proved to be the strongest, as they went on to win every challenge in all three episodes. However, this was not a tribe without cracks. Cole was beginning to annoy his tribe mates, and even his fellow ally Mike began contemplating turning on him. In addition, Dr. Mike managed to find a hidden immunity idol, with the help of Jessica. Jessica and Cole, meanwhile, have continued to grow closer, making the target bigger on
their back due to their perceived showman. With 5 strong members still, this tribe has the potential to acquire the numbers advantage in a merge situation.
With the merge coming next week, alliances are bond to change and the individual game will begin. Looking at the field, there are 5 Healers, 4 Heroes, and only 3 Hustlers left remaining. Based on the current relationships, I think a Hero/Hustler alliance is almost inevitable. Hustler Ryan is locked in with Heroes Chrissy and JP, who are close with Hero Ashley who is close with Hustler Devon. Thats 5 right there, and Heroes Ben and Hustler Lauren could easily join them to create a majority of 7, against the 5 remaining Healers. This is how I think things will go, and when it comes to targets, I believe the showmance of Cole and Jessica is highest on the list. Joe and Dr. Mike both have idols, and Desi won’t be perceived as a big target, and so I think the showmance might be kissing goodbye to each other next week. My pick to win, Chrissy, is still looking good, and is in a good spot to be in the majority and go the distance. Looking forward to seeing the craziness continue with the merge!