Welcome back, Survivor fans! Can you feel the love tonight? I can't, because season 33's self-proclaimed "power couple" is together in Fiji no more. Sorry, Figgy and Tay.
On episode seven, Bret LaBelle makes the odd decision to lie about his job as a police sergeant, telling the green team he's a funeral director, instead. At first slated to go home, Bret is ultimately saved when two Millennials stage a blindside, sending Michaela Bradshaw home instead.
Suddenly deprived of girlfriend Jessica "Figgy" Figueroa, Taylor Lee Stocker returns from Tribal Council distraught. "For me, Figs was the light, and our camp is just kind of gray right now," he moans. Listen, buddy: This is Survivor, not the Bachelor.
Taylor's new nemesis is Adam Klein, who teamed up with the purple team's Gen Xers to vote out Figgy. Adam tells Taylor he feels bad for screwing him over, but Taylor isn't having it. He tells the camera he'll keep his cool for now — but when the time comes, he'll "destroy" Adam. Taylor's precious power couple has disintegrated, and dammit, he'll exact vengeance.
Over on the orange team, the perpetually paranoid David Wright is worried about his status in the tribe. Desperate for a strong ally, David pulls Zeke Smith aside and confesses he has a hidden Immunity Idol. What's more, he tells Zeke he wants to take him to the end — an intergenerational alliance! Cute!
Reward Challenge time. Seven weeks in, and it feels like every challenge has been physical. Where are the charming games of trivia? The feats of endurance? The stomach-churning eating challenges? Not in Fiji, apparently. Today, the tribes have to get some large balls through a series of obstacles, then toss them up and land them on a narrow platform. The first-place team gets a chef-prepared meal of chicken, garlic shrimp, salad — fun, right? — and cheesecake. The second-place team gets a bunch of kebabs they have to cook themselves.
The orange team wins first place. The only catch? He who barely eats for weeks hath not the gastrointestinal resilience for pounds of garlic shrimp.
Michele Schubert is horrified as her male tribe-mates release gas from every orifice of their shrimp-stuffed bodies. "It got gross and annoying," she says, before considering that perhaps being her tribe's only woman will put her at a disadvantage. Still, she's not going to change who she is, she declares. One point for feminism!
Speaking of feminism — or a lack thereof — the purple tribe strikes up a conversation about politics. "I'm not so concerned with who's going to be president," says Taylor, a conventionally attractive white man whose hobbies include "playing music, brewing beer and snowboarding."
Over the green team, things get wacky. Bret convinced that police officers don't fare well on Survivor, lies to the group and says he's a funeral director. You know which contestants fare even worse than police officers, Bret? The ones who spin elaborate lies about their lives!
You know what's even wackier? Somehow, Hannah Shapiro senses Bret is lying. She shares her suspicions with Michaela, Justin "Jay" Starrett and Will Wahl, the three other Millennials on her tribe. Will Hannah use her suspicions — correct ones, no less — to manipulate Bret's before the next Tribal Council?
It's time for the Immunity Challenge: yet another physical competition complete with coconut-throwing and slingshot-firing.
The purple team comes in first, so Taylor won't have the opportunity to avenge his eliminated girlfriend — yet. Orange comes in second, meaning the green team is headed to Tribal Council.
Right off the bat, things don't look good for Bret and Sunday Burquest. They're outnumbered two to four, Gen Xers to Millennials.
Led by the highly strategic Michaela, the Millennials establish a plan for Tribal Council. They agree to split their votes between Bret and Sunday, in case one of them plays an Immunity Idol; if neither does, and they have to vote again to break the tie, they'll take out Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire Bret.
What could possibly go wrong? Oh, just two dudes intimidated by a woman's intelligence. Jay, realizing Michaela is "good at competitions" and a "smart chick," as he puts it, decides Michaela is too much of a threat to keep around. Despite having been allied with Michaela since Day 1, Jay pulls Will aside and suggests they vote her out.
Here we are at Tribal Council. Will the Millennials stick together and vote out a Gen X, or will Jay and Will team up with Bret and Sunday to vote out Michaela? Come on, you guys. Don't vote out Michaela.
Bret gets the first two votes — but when Michaela gets the next three, she knows she's been blindsided. "What?" she screams at Jay. "Did you do that?"
"Yeah," he says, eerily calm. The wilderness of Fiji has purged him of emotion. He barely blinks. He's dead inside.
Michaela, meanwhile, exits in a rage — and rightfully so. Like Mari Takahashi, Michaela was eliminated simply for being too smart. Also, disheartening; as some viewers pointed out on Twitter, the majority of people eliminated this season have been women of color.
At least Michaela seems to have come to terms with her elimination.