“Survivor 43” Episode 7 Recap – See Ya Later, AlliGabler?

“Survivor 43” (CBS)

IMPORTANT: XFINITY.com is the place to be for “Survivor 43” interviews, recaps, and more! Follow me on Twitter (@GordonHolmes) and YouTube for all of the goodness…

Watch Full Episodes of “Survivor 43”

Last Week: Buffs hit the floor, Gabler declared war, and Elie was shown the door.

39 26 Days, 18 People, 1 “Survivor Blog

Alright, let’s take a look at the tribes as they currently stand…

The Gaia Tribe (wearing green)

  • Cassidy, 26 – Designer
  • Cody, 35 – Elevator Sales
  • Dwight, 22 – Graduate Student
  • Gabler, 52 – Heart Valve Specialist
  • James, 37 – Event Planner
  • Jeanine, 24 – UX Developer
  • Jesse, 30 – Political Science, PhD
  • Karla, 28 – Educational Project Manager
  • Noelle, 25 – US Paralympian
  • Owen, 30 – College Admissions Director
  • Ryan, 25 – Warehouse Associate
  • Sami, 19 – Pet Cremator

Post-Tribal Shenanigans

Jeanine is shocked about Elie getting the boot. Noelle tries to cheer her up by saying that the same thing happened to her. During the discussion, Noelle gives Jeanine some really solid advice. Great to see.

Jeanine then makes a tour of the remaining players, letting them know that she’s not upset and is encouraged because now she doesn’t have to play Elie’s game. Probably the best course of action.

The next morning, Owen is selling Gabler as a wild card and an easy next target. Which is probably as easy as selling a PS5.

Gabler then hammers home this line of thought by dubbing himself the “Alligabler.” Worst “Survivor” nickname since Fabio?

Junk Mail

A fun little package arrives that the tribe assumes is just the tribe flag paints, but it also contains a message telling them that the next challenge will be a pairs affair.

And ap(pair)ently, they’ll get to choose the duos themselves, which freaks everyone out.

They decide to draw rocks to pick their partners, proving to Jeff Probst that every instinct he’s ever had is correct.

Immunity Challenge Time: There are three stages, each stage will eliminate several players. In the first stage they’ll climb through a muddy net and then dig up planks. The first four teams will advance. In the second stage they’ll race up a platform and use the planks to cross a rope bridge. The first two pairs to finish will move on. From that point the partnerships are dissolved. All four players will have to hold onto a pole to keep a bucket in the air. The buckets holds 25% of the player’s pre-game weight. The last person with their bucket in the air wins immunity.

The Pairs: Owen and Gabler, Cody and Dwight, Noelle and Sami, Ryan and James, Karla and Cassidy, and Jesse and Jeanine.

Initial Insight: Love this. Much better than the “stand-there, hold-this” challenges we tend to have immediately after the merge.

Results: Sami, Noelle, Jesse, and Jeanine were eliminated in the first round when Noelle and Jeanine both got stuck in the nets. Ryan, James, Karla, and Cassidy failed to qualify for the final round. And, it looked like Ryan and James had a bit of friction at the end. Dwight is out first in the final round. He’s eventually followed by Owen and Cody. Gabler wins immunity.

When it was all said and done, Cody and Gabler set a record for the longest performance in that challenge.

During the challenge, Gabler kept dedicated minutes to his uncle who was having heart surgery, Noelle for her strength in challenges, and friends he had in the military. In an unrelated note, It might have been getting dusty in my living room.

Quick Question: Is this the first time there’s been a commercial break during an immunity challenge?

Post-Challenge Politicking

Early on, it looks like Baka and Vesi are going to team up against Coco with James and Ryan being the early targets.

Buuut…Sami, James, Owen, and Dwight discover a clue to an advantage in the well. Literally in a bottle, bobbing on top of the water. You couldn’t have missed it. The message lets them know that an advantage is hidden under camp.

James tells them he won’t get it until after Tribal and then he promptly goes and gets it.

Word eventually gets around camp and Noelle uses this as motivation to vote James out first.

Buuut…Jesse still doesn’t trust Noelle from their time at Vesi and talks to Karla about getting rid of her.

In other news, Cody is pitching getting rid of Dwight to Jesse as well. Either way, it seems like Jesse is the power player in all of this.

Later on, James pops open his new advantage and…uh oh! It’s the friggin’ Knowledge Is Power rearing its ugly head once again. And what does he do? He tells Karla! The same Karla that Geo told about his Knowledge Is Power advantage.

Oh, and he also tells Cody about it. You know, one of the other people who would most be threatened by that advantage.

Maybe they could rename it the “History Repeats Itself” advantage.

People start to worry that James has the KIP advantage, so Cody gives his idol to Jesse, Jeanine gives her idol to Dwight, and Noelle gives her steal-a-vote to Owen…phew.

This wasn’t confusing enough before? Now it’s advantage musical chairs.

Tribal Time

Dwight claims that the tribes aren’t working together and it’s an individual game.

Cody says they’re trying to figure out if it’s time to go surfing or time to hang out on the beach with the girls and the beers.  Probst promptly compares it to the movie “Jaws.”

When asked how confident everyone is, most people are in the 7-9 range.

Voting Time: All of the votes are lost to the magic of editing.

JPro tallies and returns. He asks if anyone wants to use an advantage and…nobody does. We’ve got one vote for James, one vote for Dwight, one vote for Ryan, one vote for James, one vote for Dwight, two votes for Ryan, three votes for Dwight, and the seventh person voted out of “Survivor: 43” is…Dwight. Oh, and Jeanine’s idol, right?

Verdict: So, for once the Knowledge Is Power hurts someone other than the idol holder? Progress!

And they figured out how to make both physical prowess and the ability to stand and hold things equally valuable?

That’s a good episode in my book.

  • James – He deserves an A+++ for not bursting into flames the second he touched the Knowledge Is Power parchment. But, it feels like Jesse and Cody wanting to be players saved James more than his actual moves did.
  • Karla – You’re pulling the strings from behind the scenes, but everyone must know you have that idol by now.
  • Jesse and Cody – I’m not quite sure what I think of this move. Why is it better to be on the bottom of Coco?
  • Gabler – I think Gabler is probably well liked, but he’s playing a third-place game.
  • Ryan – I want to say you’re in a good place with some floater potential, but it feels like you’re not close to anyone. And if my exit interview with Elie is anything to go by, you don’t have a great grasp of how people perceive your actions.
  • Jeanine – If there’s a plus to that trainwreck, at least losing the idol makes you less of a threat.
  • Sami and Owen – It’s tough to spin what happened as a good thing.
  • Noelle – As the driving force behind sending James home, I predict rough times in your future.
  • Cassidy  –  I can’t grade you if you don’t show your work.

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter: @GordonHolmes