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Sleep Over!: Solenn Amazes Apolaki

Every male castaway's dream: Eat hot dogs with a hot girl. Talk strategy. Sleep beside her even with four other castaways inside the shelter. How to top that off? That sleep over is with Solenn. I can just imagine the pillow talk. But in the case of this episode, it was a campfire song.

This early on, KC is commended tonight for speaking and representing in behalf of every hot blooded male viewer. Special citation also goes to Betong for declaring that being with Solenn is one of the best "amazing" moments this season.

Too bad Aubrey's survey segment was met with suspicion (ahem...Gino). Solenn's laid back BFF approach however made the castaways more open. Why try to read her mind when you can just stare at her "amazing" face?

Each castaway got a different advise from Solenn depending on what they needed to focus on. In a male dominant jury, Stef should prove she is worthy to be the sole survivor. Mara is the swing vote. KC knows what he wants to do so he could afford fantasizing about Solenn. Betong has to fight for his slot in the tribe and not just sacrifice himself for Maey. Maey to vote as an individual even if she is close to Betong.

How everyone wishes to wake up in the morning and still look fabulous. The castaways agree that Solenn looks great after waking up in the morning while the rest of us have to deal with frizzy morning hair, huge eye bags, and things you get rid off in the shower.

Whats a day with Solenn without swimming? So KC didn't hesitate to join Solenn, Mara, and Steff for a dip.

It was great for SP to do its corporate social responsibility by letting the castaways plant some mangroves. But it was also an opportunity for the castaways to ponder on what they would do after the show. Betong has big plans which include a movie with Solenn as his leading lady. "The Amazing Movie". KC wants to have a good business since he can't always rely on his "looks" to earn a living. Stef hopes to have a teleserye. Mara hopes to have a budding showbiz or spend more time with his dad. Maey wants to have a stronger friendship with Betong.

Solenn bades farewell after the mangrove planting. A real cowgirl this woman. No complaints about sleeping over or getting her hands dirty in the mangrove. Will we see her in later episodes? A lot of dotcomers will be dreaming of it.

Overall, it was a good episode considering that Mara was no longer talking about missing Arnie or did the editing staff spared us the agony even for just one night?

In the "Abangan" episode, immunity is not the only thing up for grabs but a brand new... cellphone! Just kidding. Yes. Its the white shiny car. VROOM! I can see Betong driving off with Solenn in the passenger seat. Would he be that lucky? Abangan!

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A Solenn Moment

No, its not a misprint. The "diwata ng gubat" could have been mistaken as a goddess by the folklore gods Apolaki, Bulan, and Tala. It was a great choice to have her make a guest appearance since SP already made its apocalyptic announcement that the "End is Near" (Feb 10, 2012 to be exact). So yeah, if we are gonna party like its 2012, who better to rock this season ender than Solenn. The castaways did have a positive response to her presence (compared to Aubrey's survey segment) much to the delight of KC and probably Betong's best "Nga nga" moment of the season (did he drool? not sure).

But before we end up making this blog a shrine to Solenn, we briefly interrupt this post with this short intermission...HAPPY BIRTHDAY HAPPY CAMPER! Kudos for another job well done for this season. May the tribe grow bigger and stronger.

KC and Steff continued to have a taste of the good life: endless snorkeling, a tour of the pearl farm, great food, a ridiculous bubble bath and a soothing massage. Don't forget the helicopter ride back to camp. Palawan showcases itself as an alternative playground for both the adventurous and laid back tourist.

Finally Mara finishes her cross-stitch letter to Arnie. If there were different colored threads, she may have attempted to cross-stitch an image of Arnie. She has already been dubbed as the "Crazy Lover".

She hasn't been "crazy" in doing camp chores. Can't blame her since she did admit being depressed. That also leads to the urge to eat more of the limited camp food and long naps/sleep. Unfortunately, that earned her the monicker of "Mara Tamadera" thanks to KC.

Maey and Betong have started to have fun again even if they were slightly distracted by Mara's antics. They even delved into palm reading Mara while taking small jabs through jokes about the immunity bracelet and Mara's "pawnshop" mentality.

But I guess the staff felt it was unfair that KC and Stef were having so much fun while the remaining castaways were well...had to deal to a lot of things (meaning Mara). So what better way to have an ice breaker than to have a great Easter egg hunt. I enjoyed Betong's "egg dance" after finding one ostrich egg (which I mistaken for Iglot). Not to be outdone, I was entertained with Maey's own version of the "egg dance" when Mara found the second ostrich egg (which I thought was Iglot's sibling). It was a good stress reliever also for the crew and staff.

Gino had a session with doc Ali. Of course he was still steaming off from his unexpected departure from the game. But he was then in tears when doc showed him a picture from home and a letter. Doc Ali could be the next Oprah or Ellen with all these teary eyed moments she's been able to have from her "guests".

KC and Stef's return could have been something from a shampoo or soap commercial. Everyone wanted to touch their hair (ok Stef's hair no offense to KC) and smell their bubble bathed bodies. It could also have been a laundry soap ad since their clothes were freshly cleaned.

If Isabel Granada was still in the island, it would have brought tears to her eyes. Maey was successful to have an "open forum" with the tribe about how she handled the immunity bracelet situation. She admitted it was her fault alone to accept and give it back to Mara. Ok so thats water under the bridge? Not sure but only time will tell. Probably sooner since tribal council is a day a way.

Speaking of tribal councils, Stef has planted a seed of doubt in Mara's pretty little head. Good work for Stef on making Mara assume that her pearl necklace is an immunity bracelet. Poor Betong and Maey, they only have ostrich egg shells as would be immunity accessories. Stef's bluff may end her up on the top 3 in which KC hopes he will be part of it too (along with Mara).

What a way to end the week with Solenn gracing SP with her presence. Mara was gleeful for another reason: hotdogs, marshmallows, and hot choco. Solenn gave her two cents about choosing the sole survivor: don't emotions dictate who to chose as the sole survivor. That means chose the one who outplayed, outwit, and outlast. Emotions always run high in the jury and one sometimes wonder if it judging was more on being biased rather than being objective.

Finally, the castaways are amazed that Solenn has no complaints in camp life. She puts to shame those who have one point or the other voiced out their difficulty in camp life.

In the next episode, a bev of beauties take a dip in the water. KC does not want to miss out in this opportunity.

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Oh Maey Goodness!: The Last Tandem Standing

Stef and KC get their tour around Palawan via a helicopter. It was their first time to have a helicopter tour and no other than Richard joined them in the trip.

In the island resort, they were greeted with puka shell necklaces and welcome drinks of...buko juice! I think KC wouldn't want to see a coconut when this season is over. But even if it was their day of rest, there was no better time to strategize. Poor Maey, it seems the two have agreed that she would be next in the chopping block then Betong. This would give KC a good chance to win if it came to a final three since he would be competing with: 1) Stef who was a follower most of the time and 2) Mara who people felt was just got a free ride because of Arnie up to this point.

Betong and Maey were also strategizing in camp while Mara was cross-stitching a message to Arnie. Pens are so season 3. Well, Betong and Maey knew that one of them would be voted out next and Betong felt it would be better if he was the one to go.

Arnie gets a visit from doc Ali who surprised him with a picture and letter from his family. No one knows if Mara knew this part about Arnie but she was pretty much missing him the whole time.

KC and Stef gets a tour of the pearl farm. Stef was like a kid in a candy store. A P 15,000 to 40,000 per pearl candy store. They did get some sort of souvenirs from the management.

Late at night while Mara was cross-stitching a novel for Arnie, she had an encounter with centipedes and rats. Betong was amused that the first thing Mara did was protect her bag. Betong suspected the immunity bracelet was there and Mara was afraid their uninvited guests would steal it. Funny girl.

Mara was described having a future by putting up a tailor shop or a pawnshop. Why not both?

Betong and Maey did made one last pitch to get the immunity back by talking to Mara. Of course Mara wasn't gonna give it away since this would be the last time it could be used in a tribal council. Ok, she also said that the immunity bracelet was her only friend after Arnie was taken away from her. Besides, bracelets don't backstab or blindside you. They would have a better chance in prying the bracelet from her dead cold fingers.

Well, at least Betong and Maey tried. Its now up to Stef and KC if they truly want to team up with Mara or they go and "steal" the immunity bracelet. We will soon find out.

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Di Maka Basag Pinggan: KC Wins a Helicopter...Ride

Yesterday, some people were probably asking: "What were they thinking?" It turns out, Maey and Betong were were still wondering what they did.

For the twenty plus days, they were mostly smiling, goofing around, and were the life of the camp. But after giving Mara the immunity bracelet, there were no laughs and cheers. For the first time, the tandem seriously argued.

Betong asked Maey why they didn't follow their plan: to use the bracelet so they can get rid of it. Maey wanted to hold on to the bracelet hoping to use it for the next tribal council. Instead she decided to give it back to its "rightful owner", Mara. Of course Betong still couldn't understand what that move aimed to achieve. Now they risk being voted off instead of Mara, who Stef and KC were hopping to be the next on the chopping block. Maey now doubts her actions if it was one bad move. Everyone else except Mara thought it was not a great move.

They did continue to debate on it even on the following day with Stef acting as the child looking at her "parents" arguing. I pictured her as the kid in a commercial where one parent insisted the milk was "lusog" (healthy) but the other saying it was "busog" (makes you full).

KC on the other hand, will now have something to add to his tombstone: "The guy who never understood why Maey did that. Mara was smart to have the bracelet back" or something like that.

Mara now aims to win it all. Everyone else is afraid to the point that they were convincing KC to steal the bracelet from Mara. Unlikely, since she would probably keep it on her wrist. Unless her arm accidentally gets cut off...not that I'm giving KC any ideas since he is a good strategist.

On the sub-plot, Arnold's reception in the jury house was as cold as a froyo (frozen yoghourt). No surprise meal or group hugs. Arnold was quick to notice but was probably in self denial on why most of the jury felt that he hurt them. I was expecting a more intense situation where either: a) everyone gangs up on Arnie; b) Arnie and Johnnie gangs up on Gino; or c) a free for all Royal Rumble style of wrestling happens. Well, after Arnie gave his two cents on how Maey and Betong were not as nice as they appeared, they all went to sleep.

Tree mail is still in picture messages since MMS are way cooler than SMS. Kidding aside, if I didn't see the teaser for this episode, I would have assumed it was a catapult or something like that. But since I did see the ahem...spoiler intro a week or two ago that Betong did the cups and saucers balance challenge...well, the picture was spot on. :)

The reward was a...helicopter! Well not exactly, but it would give the winner an aerial tour of Palawan before heading to an exclusive island near the area where south sea pearls are made "Oooh! I love pearls", KC exclaimed. Umm...KC better qualify that statement unless you plan to make it a nose ring or some sort of manly bling.

Unfortunately, they don't make the black, red, or white pearls that SP uses to help CAs in tribal council. They would have to make the most of their leisurely reward.

Well, KC again with his bag of tricks. His height was an advantage in balancing those cups, saucers, plates, and bowls. He even got to lock his elbow on his hip to secure his position (he was like a gunslinger in an old western "cowboy" movie). Sure enough, he outlasted everyone else to claim victory.

So his obvious choice was...not to take Mara.
Actually, he chose Stef. This now gives Stef an opportunity to strategize with KC though they leave Mara in camp with Betong and Maey.

Next episode would show Maey and Betong asking Mara if she would ever give the bracelet to either of them if they would need it in the next TC. My TV's audio was bad but I think she said "No".

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Maey Ganon?!: Arnold Gets Sacked.

We had our share of prolonged tribal councils. But this episode showed that short is sweet.

The discussion part did take a while but it all revolved on who was deserving and who was a threat.

There was a touching moment when Maey decided to share her immunity necklace with Betong exposing her to a possible vote off. But she was in no way in danger and didn't even had to use her immunity bracelet. In a vote of 4-2, Arnold got tripped by what he thought was his new formed alliance between Betong and Maey thus becoming the fifth member of the jury.

Mara wasn't too happy when they went back to camp. It was tough that her only ally had to go. So, she asked Maey for the immunity bracelet. Maey felt so bad having the bracelet in the first place that she eventually gave it back. Mara did have some grudges and in the heat of the moment felt vindictive. Only time will tell if she will turn against Maey and Betong or decide to go with them to the final 3.

In the next episode, Betong realizes that by giving back the bracelet, the other four castaways will have to fight it out for the next immunity challenge. Will they regret their previous decision in giving back the bracelet or will Mara stick with them to the final 3?

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Making Tough Decisions

The game strains every morale fiber in you. Thats probably what Maey and Betong are going through this episode.

For the nth time, Betong and Maey are the swing vote. Stef hopes they vote for Arnold. Mara hopes they vote for Stef but is paranoid that it might be her. KC just hopes Maey and Betong decide between Stef or Arnold since either way, he's safe. Arnold, well, believes that they did enough to get to the final four.

But for a brief moment in time, the castaways were enjoying themselves. Getting coconuts. Posing and doing the catwalk in an imaginary fashion show. Having fun in the beach. KC surmised that everyone was happy in his or her perspective. Arnold and Mara think Stef will be out. Stef thinks Mara will be out. Maey and Betong could wait till the 11th hour before they decide on who to vote out.

The jury had no trouble killing time either. They even got to play against the local basketball team.

But Mara was still troubled by Maey and Betong's indecision which may end up getting her voted off. So they tried stealing the immunity bracelet by rummaging through Betong and Maey's bags. But since they didn't find anything and didn't have the heart to continue looking for it, they decided to talk to Maey and Betong.

Its really hard for Betong and Maey to break their promises even though this is a game. The immunity bracelet has become a curse. Using it or giving it back has its consequences. Betong couldn't believe that Mara wanted it back. He couldn't believe that they were just a pawnshop for Mara who would just redeem "her" bracelet whenever she wanted to. But in the end, Betong reassured Mara that they wouldn't vote for her. Betong even suggested to Maey that they could give the bracelet back once the votes were cast and let Mara and Arnold decide on who should use it.

If the same format applies, we get to see another lengthy tribal council. But this could be worth sitting through since Maey seemed to say yes when Richard asked if she would give her immunity. Or is this just good editing? Abangan.

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MAEY. WINS. IMMUNITY.

Enough said. Just with these three words, the avid followers of the show have been in a frenzy of sorts. Why shouldn't we? This was the David versus Goliath moment this season. Maey only dreamed of winning over Arnie who had been dominating most of the challenges. Besides, most people root for the underdog.

But in the past, Maey has already proven that she is one of the toughest competitors in endurance challenges. Yes for those who have just followed the show, Maey (to borrow another dotcomer's description) is the endurance queen. Maey recognized this and hoped that she gets endorsements with a tagline "pang matagalan". You know like one of those car batteries. What were we thinking? :))

For this challenge, a miniature wooden statue was placed on a disk with a stick attached to it. One holds on to the stick and makes sure the statue doesn't fall off. But in regular time intervals, the castaway has to attach additional sticks making it more difficult to balance the sitting statue.

The castaways' statues toppled one after the other thus setting up Maey and Arnold's epic stand off. Maey had shaky sticks but always found a way to balance. Arnie's was so still even a bird could have made a nest on top of it. If the challenge had lasted to the night, I would be expecting Arnold to shout, “All day, all night baby! All week, all month, all year!”

All the while, Stef was wishing ang hoping Arnold would tip his statue. No love lost since they were bickering back in camp before the challenge. Well, they are always on each others faces like siblings finding things to fight on.

More than just having total concentration, it also helped that Maey placed herself in the best position. She oriented herself in front of the table with the additional sticks making it easier for her to grab them when needed. Arnie had poised himself with the table on his side thus when his set of sticks were too tall, he had to reorient himself like Maey to get better access to the poles. But that move made his statue shake and fall. It fairness to Arnie, everyone had their tables on the side. They were positioned so the camera can view all the castaways.

I was happy at Maey's sort of "OMG" expression when Richard declared her the winner. Betong thought it was a "whale of a victory" by cheering "Mabuhay ang Butanding!" or whale shark. Mara gave a congratulatory hug and asked if she could have the immunity bracelet back. In Betong's solo interview he was dismayed asking if they were just like a pawn shop that were just keeping the bracelet till the owner wanted it back. By the way, Mara also hugged Stef saying she will be putting her name on the vote. Awww! Just kidding. This could be pure honesty or just a strategy.

Hopefully, next week's tribal council will be a short one since they will still be returning to camp and have at least the afternoon to scramble, backstab, and strategize. Some feel its between KC and Arnold. Maey and Betong will hopefully be the swing votes. Abangan.

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When It’s Not For You



When you have something to fight for, something that you can provide to someone you know personally, someone who needed the money, would you give your all?

The Reward Challenge last night was just that. It afforded the winner 250 thousand pesos to be immediately given to a person of their choosing. Some chose long-serving yayas for the years of care they have given. Some chose relatives. All of them clearly needed the money.

And then there was Betong’s choice: his high school classmate who was stricken with colon cancer. As we saw on the video, the cancer had already spread to the rest of his body, and he is no longer capable of sitting up. The prize money could be used to pay for the chemo therapy. Everyone was tearing up when they saw how badly each of the potential recipients’ need for that extra help. But when Betong’s choice (saved for last) was shown, the waterworks commenced among the remaining castaways (and I suspect, even the viewers).

Being an emotionally driven challenge as this is, everyone’s adrenalin is running high. But this is a very physical competition, requiring them to roll 6 big wooden boxes and arranging them in the correct pattern on giant steps. Again, having an athlete’s body proved to be a heavy advantage for Arnold as he easily finished the task well ahead of the others. This is not to say that the others didn’t try. We saw all of them put in their efforts. Mara & Stef, clearly touched by Betong’s choice kept on cheering him on while rolling their own boxes. But unfortunately for those rooting for Albert to win, he can only go so far.

When Arnold finally hoisted his flag, he broke down in tears. The girls came to console him. Arnold didn’t have much cause to jump up and cheer. He was happy that he was able to give her Aunt the money for medical treatment, but he was also aware that in doing so, he prevented Betong from helping his friend. In all the challenges, Betong was ok with not winning, save for this one. This was the one he wanted to win, not for himself, but for a dying friend.
Now, there’s another battle raging among the viewers regarding Arnold’s win. Stef was of the opinion that Arnold should have thrown the game for Betong’s sake. But if he did that, then what of his own Aunt, who needed treatment? Its part of the rules that prize money won are not permitted to be shared.

Before I wrote this review, I saw from a screen-cap tweet of Betong’s that his friend passed away by the time they got back from Palawan. May he rest in peace and free from pain.

Now the question I pose to those who would read this article is: If you were in the competition, would you purposely loose to let Betong win, knowing that in doing so, you deprive someone you love the money that they need as well?

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Tribe Apology and Broken Vows

Like any post tribal council, some left satisfied. Some felt they needed to explain. Others were dumbfounded. Gino, the latest casualty in a series of blindsides, looked like a bride left on the altar by her groom because of something bad that happened in the past. Or did I just describe the premise of a new teleserye?

You had to hand it to Gino. Even in the jury house, he was still playing the game. Well you can't totally blame the guy since John looked like he was in "Hulk" mode. For Gino to admit the whole truth would be like a kiss of death for him.

It seems everytime a blindside happens, someone has to apologize for their decision. Betong did approach KC and Stef for not revealing their move to oust Gino. But wait, didn't Gino and KC agreed to an earlier plan that Maey would be the casualty if Arnold ever used his immunity bracelet? It looked like Maey and Betong have no plans yet of revealing that they have the immunity bracelet in their possession.

Arnold and Mara are becoming the masters of blindsides. But I can't say that they are in that Rob and Amber level of play. By the way, this is the first time I realized that Arnold also goes by the name of "Hon". Maybe its a local term in New Zealand or something.

Tree mail has been more of visual clues rather than the riddles that we are used to. I hope nothing bad has happened to their riddle "ghost writer". Or are the pictures much easier to understand rather than translating the Filipino written riddles to english for some castaways?

The reward challenge is huge and really worth playing for. Competing for 250 k to be given to someone back home can really get you motivated. I wonder if there were a lot less people quitting this season if some of the winnings were given to the charity of their choice?

Sadly, the puzzle crates spell out "APOLAKI" another Filipino word that starts with A. I guess we already have an idea who are gonna struggle in this challenge.

Betong looks to play with a lot of heart as he wants to win this one for somebody. Would he succeed? Abangan.

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Gino's Blindside: Naka Takda na Sa Mga Tala

Tribal council was a sharing of personal reasons of why the castaways are playing the game (as oppose to quitting?). Some play for their love ones (whether they were bread winners or not). Others play to test their friendship. Others did Survivor Philippines Celebrity Doubles for the love of the game. Sorry. That was Aubrey's line to Gino.

Speaking of Gino, he was left dumbfounded and frustrated because of another vicious blindside orchestrated by Arnie and Mara. Courting the former Tala tribe of Maey and Betong paid off big time so kudos to the MARNIE for taking a huge gamble.

For Maey and Betong, it probably wasn't just a matter of accepting an immunity bracelet from Mara. It was a matter of survival. The resulting alliance and the successful blindside sets up for a possible final four for Maey, Betong, Arnold, and Mara.

Hopefully, in tomorrow's episode, it could be explained why the four decided on Gino instead of the bigger threat KC. Stef by the now is used being the outsider in the tribe. KC is definitely going to have to copy from Arnold's playbook and try to regain an alliance with Maey and Betong by showering them with kindness and a better deal (final 3?).

Like what Richard said, it was a long night. Its time for us to rest.

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Shall We Dance?

It was an entertaining episode. Everybody trying to strut a move. Some tried to dance to the music. Some just going with the groove. Others just had two left feet.

Gino and Stef finally looking to be dancing partners again. It was good that Gino took the lead in trying to reconcile with Stef. But the way Gino makes alliances, this could be a cha-cha: sometimes moving forward sometimes going backwards. Would this pair decide to follow the same beat?

Doc Ali visiting the jury with love ones. If being a counselor is like being a dance instructor, she was successful in getting people to express themselves. Chuckie's wife (Aileen) did. Boy, there are words you don't other people saying to your spouse. Thanks to Aileen, people realize that may include "I love you."

The jury and love ones were having a blast in the beach during the day. It just went insane during the disco dancing at night. Probinsya style. It was no surprise Arthur and Rochelle doing some lifts and some dance routines since both belonged to a dance group. John tried to keep up with his sister (Sofia). Chuck and Aileen were just trying to entertain the people. Unfortunately, the love ones had to leave as soon as they got to the jury house. Well, we didn't really expect them to be there until final TC. Right?

It was amusing to see Mara and Arnie trying to do the "swing" to Maey and Betong. Arnie is not totally giving up and by promising Maey the "sole survivor" its just a move to go further in the game. Not by any means this is his last dance. Personally, with all of Arnie's effort in camp and cheesy lines to woo Maey, he was like a queso de bola. Not sure if pun was intended. Definitely no "dance" reference.

Mara showing Maey and Betong the "twist" by giving the immunity bracelet. Sure, its no free meal and comes with a price of a four way or should I say two pair alliance. Group dancing is so much fun. L.A. Walk anyone?

Up to this point, Betong and Maey are the swing votes. Let me repeat that. Swing votes not swingers.

Betong seems to have some plan in place for allowing Maey to accept the bracelet. Maey has so far followed Betong's lead and hopefully they get to go the "grand ball" which is the final 2 or 3.

KC and Gino seemed to be choreographing something else which might make Maey "lose step". But it all depends if Mara uses the bracelet to protect Arnie.

Tomorrow, it could be one slow dance of a tribal council or hopefully a quick two step exit for the fourth member of the jury. The one leaving could be doing the "crazy dance" if it turns out to be another blindside. Abangan.

P.S. Stef was like gaga over Richard that her little heart was dancing like a ballerina floating in the air. KC could only say, "Good for her" in his usual deadpan expression.

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A.L.Y.A.N.S.A.


Who knew having a decent Filipino vocabulary would give you three more days in the island? Steff Prescot had an unbelievable come from behind victory in the immunity challenge because of this 7 letter triple A word. KC who had an eternity to finish the word puzzle before Arnie and Mara got to their tables. I suggest these three guys get online tutorials with this dude above.

I haven't gotten around watching Mikey Bustos You Tube videos though I love his chicharon commercials. Anywho, since GMA got the guy to be here in the Philippines and he could teach a thing or two to other Fil-foreign celebrities especially in Filipino pick up lines.

At the start of the episode, the loveones were doing pretty well even with the hardships of camp life. The castaways got to ride the waves with a surfboard courtesy of Mara and her dad Hiroshi.

Hiroshi was a bottomless well of wisdom. He even certified Maey as having a bonafide surfer's body. Mara was seeking his dad's approval of Arnie. Hiroshi thought it was John because of how Mamabel kept talking about him. Before the season ends, it could be Betong for all we know. Ok, may be not.

Another picture tree mail was delivered. This was a much different clue since no one could decipher it as the table maze for the challenge.

I was wondering why the CAs kept saying there was not enough time to talk to those who came from the reward and it was like game time for the immunity challenge. Anyway, the challenge was pretty straight forward. I like it when the love ones start the challenge and let the castaways finish it off.

Steff's mom started out pretty well which might be the reason why Steff never gave up on the challenge. KC was way ahead of the pack thanks to the crazy table maze skills of Troy. Unfortunately solving tagalog word puzzles proved to be his weakness. What was insane was Arnold and Mara couldn't arrange the letters either. Hello! Star Gazer already said that there would be a letter A and in this case three As. Stef, Betong and Gino did catch up but Stef had already realized the mystery word even before she got to touch the letters. So Stef proved to herself and the tribe to be a winner and not an undeserving player that tags along.

Its really hard to say goodbye when the love ones and castaways were having so much fun. But everything has an end. I thought Mara was more sad to see her surfboard go. Arnold wanted to spend some time with Cris. Betong pleaded for his sister to lose weight.

Back in camp, Stef was enjoying her new found accessory: the immunity necklace. Some of the castaways were talking about Arnie and how he became hardworking in camp. But KC chided that Arnie was one step closer to wedding bells since he already talked to Mara's mom and dad.

Next episode, the jury and love ones get to party San Vicente style. More of the typical bayle (disco in the field) but Rochelle and Arthur seemed to have their patent dance routine. Some castaways are not buying to Arnie's efforts to gain their trust. But he probably would have to use his immunity bracelet and hope to win consecutive immunity challenges in the future.

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Brother Sun, Sister Moon


We get a peek in the personal life of our castaways. The love ones who returned to camp looked surprised with the living conditions of the castaways. See, this show puts the "real" in reality tv.

Arnie, the only one without a guest in camp, was doing his best to help the love ones adjust to camp life by getting coconuts. One might say he was assuring Mara's father that his daughter was well taken cared of. By the way, did anyone notice what Steph was starring at? :)

The three male jury members were on the beach unsuspecting that their love ones were already raiding the jury house. Well not raiding actually. It was nice that Rochelle (Arthur's former Sexbomb girlfriend, Yen (Chuckie's wife), and Sofia (John's brother) were already putting the needed woman's touch in the jurys' bachelor pad. The girls were cleaning so diligently that Rochelle saw her letter to Arthur. The letter looked like it had been folded and unfolded more times than an origami swan. But Rochelle interpreted it that, all this time, Arthur was reading the letter as often as he could. Awwww!

Yen unfortunately got hold of the "Dear Chuck" letters with one of them from Chuckie's old flame and SP partner Isabel. She cried after reading the poems and outpouring sweetness in Isabel's words. It was like the effect of sugar to a diabetic. Kidding aside, it made Yen uneasy thinking if sparks were again flying for the former loveteam.

Anyway, the girls got busy cooking and by the time the guys got back, the dinner table was already prepared with matching messages left for the jury. Honestly, the guys were frolicking in the beach that long? Maybe someone in the SP staff was stalling them saying the pest exterminator was there or something.

It was a bit funny that Chuckie was completely lost to which food was prepared by his still unknown love (Yen) one who was just upstairs peeping through the small gaps of the floor. Strike two?

Anyway it was nice to see that the jury was pleasantly surprised when their love ones revealed themselves. The love ones were also surprised seeing how much the castaways have changed (dark skin, patches of sun burns, weight loss, and like "what have they done to you?").

Chuckie was firm with his answers to Yen regarding the "Dear Chuck" letter. Well, it looked liked it turned out well since Chuck was able to partner with Isabel in Daldalita.

If the jury was pigging out, those on the reward were having consecutive feasts. Dinner was several viands and different chocolate desserts. KC may have volunteered to do the traditional "shower scene in an actual bathroom" for the group. I thought he didn't mind not taking a shower since there was no one to impress to in the island?

The following day started with a breakfast of champions. Then there were unlimited trips to the zips lines, all terrain vehicle riding, and horse back ridding. Gino's sister got a sprain from the zipline. Betong was worried that her sister's weight may have caused some back problems for the horse.

Overall, it was wonderful day for everyone who had a love one (sorry Arnie) whether they were in camp, in the jury house, or out in the reward.

Next episode, Mara and her dad give a surf clinic to the Apolaki castaways. Immunity challenge is up and the love ones will fight for their castaway to stay another 2 or 3 days in the island plus one step closer to the season 4 title and three million pesos.

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Outwit, Outplay, Outweigh: Tinimbang Ka Ngunit Kulang




It was a simple challenge yet it got the castaways and love ones to dig deep and get not only their hands but their entire body dirty. I could imagine someone in the background singing/shouting "Anak ng Putik Naman Kayo!".

Great job to the Montero brothers. No one even came close in tipping the balance scale to their load or favor. KC again showed another cool little trick by finding a loophole in the challenge. Only KC could have come up with the idea of using his head and back to lift the heavier "mud bricks". It seems KC still a few more things in his bag of tricks.

Allowing Gino and Betong to join in the reward further cements KC's alliance with the two. By the way, the reward looks like to be in a ranch of sorts with ziplines and hearty picnic.

Nice justification in deciding that Arnold be the castaway not to have his team mate Cris stay in camp. It was a no-brainer actually considering everyone else had family members with them. Besides I don't think Cris is a suitable replacement for John to revive the bromance angle.

During the solo interview, KC was very candid about his falling out with Arnie because of the previous tribal council. But their rivalry isn't yet as intense as the Kiko-Marlon of Season 1.

The castaways and love ones got to wash off the mud on their bodies in a near by river. I bet KC would look around if someone would have sing "Anak ng Pasig Naman Kayo!".

In the next episode, the Montero brothers along with the Gino, Betong and their love ones get to continue their bonding in a ranch filled with activities. The jury house will be "raided" by the jury members' love ones. I don't think anyone in the jury has any secrets to hide from their love ones. Or do they? And where were the jury members if they were not sequestered in the jury house? Visiting El Nido or the underground river? Will sparks fly because of the Dear Chuckie letrers? What secrets will Rochelle find inside Arthur's closet I mean luggage? Abangan.

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Reunions. Its more fun in Survivor Philippines


At some point, reality tv shows feature a contestant's close family member or friend. But Survivor makes the experience most enjoyable as the love ones get to compete in a challenge and if lucky, join in the reward. Twenty plus days in the island and some castaways suddenly realize how much they miss the most important people in their lives.

But thats getting ahead of the episode. You think Arnold's reaction to John's exit in the previous episode was priceless? After learning his teammate was "playing both sides of the field" he was shocked. Personally, I was like, "Well, there goes the bromance."

It was entertaining to see Arnold having a "man talk" with Gino and Casey (KC). Gino felt he had to debrief Arnold on why John was dethroned in the "three kings" alliance. KC was spot on when he observed that Gino is "running the show". Well, John's scrambling and presenting of Venn diagrams only proved he can jump to any alliance much to the dismay of Arnold.

I thought Betong was cool when asked about the blindside. He and Maey genuinely get along with people which is why they have been successful up to this point.

Some viewers may have cringed not only when Mara and Stef had their regular "heart to heart" talk but when they were consoling each other with a hug. I think I overheard one viewer saying "Did I miss seeing the knife each one was holding while they were patting the others back?"

Anyways, John may not have saw it coming but most of the castaways felt he deserved being voted out. If its any consolation, Arthur and Chuckie did welcome him with open arms and a decent meal. Sure they weren't chefs in a five star hotel, but whatever was cooked would look like fine dinning when you've been eating buko rice and crabs for weeks.

Finally, the heart touching segment of the episode: the castaways' love ones visit the island. What made it more special is that the love ones will get to stay in camp and compete in more than one challenge.

It was nice to see that most of the CA's had a family member. Well, Arnie did get to introduce Chris, another member of the Philippine Volcanoes. I'm not sure if this guy Chris was part of the rugby team who posed for the Bench billboards. The Montero brothers (KC and Troy) in matching T-shirts. Betong making a light moment when comparing her sister Ana to Maey. Mara's dad brought his "old school" surfboard(a project they both started). Hopefully we finally get to see a castaway enjoying the waves.

The reward challenge will actually start in the next episode. Big buckets and a huge pool of mud are involved. Not sure, but did I miss the part on what the reward was supposed to be? Though having your love one at least for one night in this competition is priceless.

Until the next post, hugs are free so give as many to those who matter most. :)

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The TC Show

It was an interesting tribal council (TC) not because it was another episode-long drawn out TC discussion. It was interesting in the sense that John was blindsided by his "three kings" alliance of KC and Gino. Stef was finally with a group/alliance of sorts who valued her role in TC. I guess John's exit was written in the stars after all when Betong and Maey, former Tala tribe members, sealed his fate by casting their votes against the Philippine Volcano player.

But before anything else...HAPPY NEW YEAR! My apologies for not updating during the holidays. Survivor Philippines is usually over in the second week of December (ok thats not a good excuse). The only updates I could say was that Arthur was previously voted out and now living with Chuckie under one roof (the jury house that is). Arnold is on a winning streak in immunity challenges. Who knew that John's win in the reward challenge was his last? At least the three guys (John, Arnold, and Betong) are aware what "body scrubs" covers or rather uncovers the next time they visit a spa.

Back on the TC, it looked like KC was the Nostradamus as he foresaw votes being cast against him. John had the same "intuition" skills of Ms. Star Gazer when it came to reading castaways he could or couldn't trust. Sorry Johnny, Stef was right by saying some people get "played" in this game.

KC and his alliance showed a cool little trick in voting. The rest of his alliance voted John while he voted Mara just in case immunity bracelets be used for John or Mara. John would probably have voted KC instead of Stef if he felt he was on the chopping block.

For Betong and Maey, another TC without their names being written. Most importantly, they are in an alliance that has the majority.

I thought Mara "gambled" in not using her immunity bracelet. But it did pay off as she only had one vote. Richard had a challenge of his own tallying votes of four castaways (John, KC, Stef, and Mara).

By the way, this episode was brought to you by the letters A & J (as seen by Ms. Star Gazer) and the number 4 (votes John got).

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