Survivor: Millennials Vs. Gen X recap

No matter what generation you belong to, certain rules of Survivor apply to all ages. For starters, many of the “greats” that have played the game have been called by their last names: Hatch, Cochran, Savage, etc. (this is good news for you “Figgy” fans, as this is a play on her last name, Jessica Figueroa).

Another classic lesson learned though, is never get comfortable. Just when you think you’re on the top, you’re usually sharing the screen with a lower-third graphic that reads #blindside. Such was the case tonight, on the latest episode of Survivor: Millennials vs. Gen-X – an episode that saw the bottom-feeders fighting for survival and those resting on their laurels get a rude awakening.

Here’s your “spoiler” warning, so if you have yet to see Episode 3 please do so and then check back here! Beyond this point we will be talking about all of the juicy details of what transpired during the episode. You’ve been warned!


Survivor: Millennials Vs. Gen X recap

So it’s apology time. I feel I owe two big ones right off the bat, directed towards David and Lucy.

First off, to David, you’re starting to play this game. Sure, you’re scared of your own shadow, you don’t like bugs or dirt, you can’t snap a twig in half, and you arguably have no business being on Survivor. But I’ve been a bit too harsh on you thus far this season. In tonight’s episode, you really showed that you are adapting to the game and to the environment, and you’re beginning to work all angles.

Tonight, as part of the “Survivor Summit,” four tribe mates from each tribe got to go and feast and mingle with each other, to gain some intel and to do a little recon. David – along with CeCe, Paul, and Chris – was randomly selected to represent the Gen-Xers, while the Millennials were represented by Will, Jay and Figlor (the showmance between Figgy and Taylor). David made the most of this opportunity, since he currently sat at the bottom of his Gen-X tribe, along with CeCe and Ken. Out of the sight of Paul and Chris, David tried to plant the seeds of a cross-tribe alliance by spilling some information to Figlor, and also trying to form a secret alliance with Taylor specifically. Will this work out for David? Who knows, but you’ve got to give the guy credit for busting his butt, playing the game, and not being content with being on the bottom. If there is one player who has traveled the furthest over the course of these three episodes, it’s David. He began as a meek, lost, paranoid buffoon and by the end of tonight’s episode finds himself not only not on the bottom, but in a position of real strength on his tribe, now with some potential future allies coming should he make the merge. So kudos to you David, and sorry for the harshness.

Survivor: Millennials Vs. Gen X recap

That brings me to sweet, sweet Lucy. Her smiles are about as elusive as the yellowtail fish that Paul couldn’t seem to catch. She’s seen so infrequently through three episodes, I was right about to rename her “Purple Lucy,” in honor of Purple Kelly from Survivor: Nicaragua, who was seen for about 30 total seconds during her season before eventually quitting. Purple Kelly by the way, still holds the Survivor record for latest first confessional, which happened during the show’s seventh episode, so Lucy is still in the running for her record (unless I’ve missed a Lucy confessional?)

But Lucy at least was shown to be in existence, finally, during Episode 3. Not only that, but she smiled! I saw it with my own eyes, although I did have to rewind and pause my DVR to make certain it wasn’t a feverish dream brought on by my current lack of sleep (I’m a new dad, for those that haven’t heard…). Yep, Lucy flashed her pearly whites when Jeff Probst asked the tribes if they wanted to learn about the Immunity Challenge. Later, Lucy actually had a few lines of dialogue after Paul put his foot in his mouth (more on that in a bit). Best of all, it appears Lucy becomes the new tribe leader, if we’re to believe the preview for next week’s episode. So Purple Lucy, my sincerest apologies for implying that you were not capable of cracking a grin.

Survivor: Millennials Vs. Gen X recap

With my apologies out of the way, let’s turn to some other developments during tonight’s episode. Over at the Millennial tribe, Zeke and Adam were downright blindsided after Mari‘s torch was snuffed last week. Hannah was swayed at Tribal Council by Michelle, and relentlessly tried to plead her case to Zeke and let him know why she voted out Mari. But man did she not take the hint! Zeke hinted, then nudged, then kindly asked, then forcefully demanded that she leave him the hell alone, but Hannah just was not receiving the memo. It was simultaneously perhaps the funniest and the most awkward scene of the season.

Hannah is not looking all that good as a player so far, having been easily swayed during a Tribal Council, then not owning up to her decision, and then finally not showing the social awareness to see that she was bothering the hell out of Zeke. But with Zeke and Adam on the bottom of their tribe, Adam made a logical plea to Michaela and Hannah that made a lot of sense. He basically laid out the tribe dynamics, and tried pointing out that Figgy, Taylor, Michelle, and Jay were as tight as a foursome could be. It is in Michaela and Hannah’s best interest to break up that power couple as soon as possible.

Survivor: Millennials Vs. Gen X recap

But ultimately, we didn’t get to see the Millennials at Tribal Council because they won this week’s Immunity Challenge, an obstacle course that consisted of a balance beam, a bean bag toss, a puzzle, and CeCe taking her sweet time. She moved so slowly over a balance beam that three Millennials made the trek in the time that it took CeCe to get to the other side. She was mostly blamed for the loss – which also scored the Millennials a reward of comfort in the form of pillows, blankets, candles, and two custom Survivor lounge chairs – but it was too-old-to-really-be-a-Gen-Xer Paul who ended up paying the ultimate price.

Survivor: Millennials Vs. Gen X recap

Poor Paul. Let’s face it, this guy was at a disadvantage to begin with because he is a man over 50 playing in a game called Millennials vs. Gen-Xers. He’s really neither, despite his grouping by CBS as a Gen-Xer. It was this in combination with his outgoing personality that put him on the chopping block. But even after surviving last week’s health scare and near medical evacuation, Paul was revealed this week to be a lot of talk. Ken pointed out that Paul hadn’t caught one fish yet, and someone pointed out this episode that his background as a musician didn’t do him any favors. He is used to playing to a crowd, not listening to the needs of the crowd.

Paul was a fun personality, perhaps gone too soon from the game, but he’s the sort of character that usually does get voted out early. Give credit to David, Ken, and CeCe for flipping the script and stretching out their Survivor lives at least three more days, despite what seemed like insurmountable odds just a few episodes back. But even still, it seemed like Paul’s real downfall was his loose lips, and a random comment about an all-guy alliance ultimately sank Paul’s ship.

Episode Take-Away: This episode had a lot of good strategy talk, but the main take-away for me were all of the subtle seeds that were planted all over the island. Adam – still getting the “winner’s edit” in my opinion – planted the seed with Michaela and Hannah that there is more than one good reason to break-up the power couple on their tribe. David planted a seed with Taylor, across enemy lines. And the show itself planted a few seeds: First, a brief seed with Jessica reminded us that she has that special “Legacy Advantage” that will reveal itself on Day 36. Second, with Adam combing the Millennial beach, the camera subtly panned over to a marked coconut, which we know from the other tribe represents the hidden Immunity Idol. Trust me, the show isn’t going to spend time planting all of these seeds if there isn’t going to be any fruition…it’ll be interesting to see how, if and when all of these stems start to bloom.

Strategic Move of the Week: Let’s give the honors this week to David, for overall game-play. He was able to up-end Paul, who was on top of his tribe through 10 days on the island, and also reached across the aisle to try to spark an alliance with a Millennial. Having been a target, and having shown incredible paranoia, he also calmly sat through Tribal Council and correctly chose not to use his Idol, saving it for another day.

Voted out this week: Paul

Vote: 6 – Paul (David, Ken, CeCe, Sunday, Lucy, Jessica), 3 – CeCe (Paul, Chris, Bret)

Next Week’s Episode: Tensions are high at the Gen-X tribe, with Lucy looking like the new head of the beast. And a crazy challenge literally knocks Jeff Probst off of his feet. Let’s keep this season rolling! Join me next week once again and please share your comments and thoughts below!


Photo Credit: CBS/Monty Brinton/Robert Voets

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