SIX EIGHTY-SIX ANDREA: Steve Punted Off Redemption Island
“You Mangled My Nets” With Zapatera pretty much out of the way (barring a Redemption Island victory), Ometepe begins to carry out plans to destroy itself. Mike wins Reward in the Redemption Island challenge, which sees Steve sent to the jury, but gives up his reward so that the Ometepe Six are able to spend time at camp with their loved ones. Rob wins Immunity in one of the most physically demanding challenges in the show’s history, but not without a strong showing by the suddenly-threatening Andrea. Phillip steps up his routine to cement his place in the game, but nearly takes it too far.
Mike’s mom is then brought out and although she claims her name is Jane, I’m pretty sure it is Suze Orman. Mike thinks he’s off to hang with mommy, but of course there is a twist. According to Probst, Mike can “forgo your own love with your mom” — is it just me or does that sound creepy and vaguely remind you of Colby and his mom sleeping in the back of a truck? — and let Matt and Ralph have time with their loved ones instead. Or he can allow the Ometepe six to spend time with their family. It’s an easy choice. In this situation you have to play the percentages and pick Ometepe, hoping that your selfless gesture of kindness might win you a jury vote or two should you make it to the end. And that’s exactly what Mike does, although he claims it is due to his Bible readings and desire to “love your brother like you love yourself.” Whether that’s true, or another strategic vote to also curry favor with Bible-loving Matt is open to debate, but either way, it is the right move. “Thanks, Mike,” Ometepe says. “You’re welcome,” he replies. “Don’t vote me out again.” Which, of course, they would.
Quite possibly one of the hardest physical challenges ever, the contestants had to build a tall staircase, one stair at a time. Each stair fit uniquely onto a pattern of pegs, and if you brought the wrong step with you, you had to go all the way down to the bottom of the staircase. First person up top wins.
After a few minutes, it was evident that it was a 3-way horse race between Rob, Grant, and Andrea. It was truly painful watching these competitors in what was described as 110 degree heat. Rob literally was using the steps as a crutch to reach the top. And reach the top he did, just barely. Upon winning Immunity, Rob nearly loses consciousness. Probst even asks him if he wants medical to come in. Rob if you remember, had an issue on Heroes vs. Villains where he collapsed…and watching him here I thought he was going to need some help. But he pulled through, and stumbled over to grab his Immunity Necklace from Probst. He says he was literally “giving it everything I got.”
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