Season 40 of Survivor has almost reached the halfway point, with eight of the 20 “Winners at War” having been voted off and sent to the Edge of Extinction island. On the latest episode, titled “We’re in the Majors,” the description teases, “Some winners sprint their way to an opportunity to gain an edge over the other castaways. Also, one tribe employs a different strategy in a rigorous immunity challenge.”
Based on the preview clips, this might be the hardest immunity challenge yet. The castaways are tasked with carrying a large saucer underneath a water tower, filling it up with water, navigating an obstacle course while trying to hold the saucer level, and then emptying what’s left into a well. They have to fill up the well in order to get their puzzle pieces for the last portion of the challenge. It looks incredibly hard.
Follow along here with our live recap, but be warned of elimination spoilers for who is voted off tonight. All times Eastern.
8:05 — Parvati Shallow is out on Edge of Extinction and she’s pretty surprised she went out before the merge, but she’s in good company. Parvati is especially surprised to see Sandra Diaz-Twine there, heh. Sandra tells them how Denise Stapley played her and she feels a little bad she played with her emotions so much, but she doesn’t seem overly bitter. She also says Edge of Extinction is not for her, so Sandra’s outtie. Peace! For real, though, kudos to her for knowing her limitations and that she should probably be done.
8:06 — Meanwhile, Yul Kwon is pretty mad at Wendell Holland for the way Wendell went totally off book at Tribal Council and almost blew everything up. The next morning, Wendell apologizes to Michele Fitzgerald and she says that someone who creates chaos often gets voted off. He bristles at this, but she’s not wrong. Honestly, I don’t think she’s trying to “school” him, I think she’s just being friendly and trying to shore up their alliance. But maybe he’s being super defensive with Michele because they used to date and it feels more controlling coming from her than from Yul?
8:12 — Ethan Zohn is also really struggling at Edge of Extinction. His body isn’t as strong as it once was, especially after his stem cell transplants, so he’s considering leaving, but Parvati gives him a pep talk. Then he finds the box for this week’s clue. They each get a scroll that says, “Scattered on top of the island there are four fire tokens. Follow the trails to their natural ends, then the search begins. There is no limit to how many fire tokens any one player can find.” The race is on!
8:15 — Tyson Apostol finds one right away, then they can’t find the other three. They all figure they just can’t find them. EXCEPT WAIT — Boston Rob Mariano sprinted ahead and found THREE fire tokens. He got one right away, then he sneakily finds the second one right under Ethan’s nose, then he goes to the lookout peak and finds the third one. Wow.
8:17 — For those of you keeping score at home, the fire token count stands thusly: on Edge of Extinction, Boston Rob and Natalie Anderson have three each. Danni Boatwright, Amber Brkich Mariano, Ethan, and Tyson each have one. Parvati doesn’t have any.
Back in the game, Michele has the most with five because she just got Parvati’s tokens. Nick Wilson, Yul, and Denise have two apiece. Adam Klein, Ben Driebergen, Jeremy Collins, Sophie Clarke, Tony Vlachos, Kim Spradlin-Wolf, and Wendell have one each. Sarah Lacina doesn’t have any.
8:22 — At Dakal, Kim is nervous about their tribe getting picked off at the merge. She feels solid with Jeremy and Denise, but she’s not sure about Tony. I could get behind Kim, Denise, and Jeremy riding to the end together. Meanwhile, over at Yara, Sophie thinks there’s a lot of tension in their tribe over a possible hidden immunity idol, but she has the idol in her bag. Adam is convinced Ben or Sarah has it, while Ben is convinced Adam has it.
8:30 — Challenge time. This looks absolutely brutal. The tribes have to carry a large saucer that looks super heavy underneath a water tower, fill the shallow basin with water, navigate it through an obstacle course and dump the water in the well. They have to fill the well to get their puzzle pieces, so it will take multiple trips. Yikes. Now, is the strategy to go faster and make more trips (because theoretically if you go faster you’ll lose more water), or do you go slower and make fewer trips?
8:35 — Yara takes the slow and steady approach, but it pays off for them because they fill their well with one trip! Well done, Yara. They have a lead going into the puzzle and they win the challenge, so it’s between Dakal and Sele for second place. And then Dakal wins! Oooh, Wendell might be in trouble.
8:45 — Wendell is banking on Michele and Nick to vote with him, but both of them are thinking about going with Yul. Michele’s issue is that she gave Wendell a fire token and she won’t get it back. But Yul has a plan for that. He thinks they convince Wendell that only Nick betrayed him, so that way Michele has a chance to get his fire tokens. But since Michele would write down Yul’s name, he wants a fire token as compensation for risking himself. However, this very clever plan gets Nick and Michele to start talking about Yul being dangerous. Hmmm. I think that’s why you keep Yul. He’s super smart and he’s a good human shield. Wendell is too much of a loose cannon.
8:50 — Jeff is most definitely smirking at Wendell when they arrive at Tribal Council. Wendell sighs and says it wasn’t the best of days. But he also says it won’t change who the group decided to vote out. Probst then says that Yul is the last old-school player left. Wow, is that true?! Hang tight…
8:54 — OK, I checked some numbers and I think that’s not *exactly* true. In my head, I was thinking that Kim, Denise, and Sophie are somewhere in the middle, and lo and behold, they’re from seasons 23-25. I feel like the game shifted dramatically around like seasons 29 and 30 or so. But Yul is definitely an “OG” winner and he’s the only one left.
8:55 — Also, there’s a super awkward exchange between Michele and Wendell about whether or not he cares about her. He has to make it clear that he cares about her and her future but not necessarily in the game. Which I think is totally fair.
8:58 — Wendell and Yul obviously vote for each other, which we get to see. Then the votes go Yul, Wendell, Yul, and… Yul. Damn. On the way out, he gives his fire tokens to Sophie and Sarah, bringing their total up to two for Sophie and one for Sarah.
9:00 — Next week: The Merge!
Survivor: Winners at War airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.