Last week after Sophie Clarke‘s shocking blindside, the Top 8 contestants of “Survivor: Winners at War” were determined: Jeremy Collins, Ben Driebergen, Michele Fitzgerald, Sarah Lacina, Kim Spradlin-Wolfe, Denise Stapley, Tony Vlachos and Nick Wilson. With so much infighting and mistrust between the remaining players, there was no telling who might be eliminated this week. So how did everything play out, and whose torch did Jeff Probst snuff at the end of the hour?
Below, read our minute-by-minute “Survivor: Winners at War” recap of Season 40, Episode 12, titled “Friendly Fire,” to find out what happened Wednesday, April 29 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT. Then be sure to sound off in the comments section about your favorite castaways on CBS’s reality TV show, who currently holds immunity idols and fire tokens, and who you think will ultimately join the “Survivor” winners list.
Keep refreshing/reloading this “Survivor 40” live blog for the most recent updates.
7:59 p.m. – “Previously on ‘Survivor’!” In last week’s 11th episode, everything seemed to be going according to plan for Sophie — that is, until Tony got involved. Sophie’s group wanted to send home Jeremy, so they split the vote between him and Michele in case an idol was played. Knowing that, all Tony needed was four votes to instigate an epic blindside on Sophie. He brought Jeremy, Michele and Nick into his plan and it was executed beautifully at tribal council. Sophie went home … with an idol in her pocket! Who will be voted out tonight?
8:00 p.m. – When they got back to camp, Ben and Sarah were most upset about Sophie’s blindside. The two of them were working closely with her since the tribe swap, but for Sarah this was also a huge betrayal from Tony who she was aligned with as well. In their conversation, Sarah told Tony that if she’s voted out next that he should never speak to her again. Tony also had to do some repair with Ben and in order to gain back his trust he told him that he has an idol and declared that he wants to go to the end with him and Sarah.
8:05 p.m. – The next morning tensions were high between Jeremy and Ben, made clear to Jeremy when Ben refused to have a chat with him. The two players have been at odds for a few weeks now, wanting to get the other out as soon as possible. Meanwhile, Kim was preparing to find a way to get Tony out of the game, speaking with Denise, Nick, Michele and Ben about that idea. It was easy to get them on board after most of them were left out of the vote to eliminate Sophie.
8:10 p.m. – On Edge of Extinction the eliminated players were offered another chance to earn fire tokens by traversing the island 20 times. The journey had to be completed before sundown and only the first six to do so would earn two fire tokens each. At one point Rob Mariano slipped on the tide rocks and cracked his elbow open, ending his chance at being one of the six. Natalie Anderson was the first to finish, followed closely by Sophie. Yul Kwon came in third, Parvati Shallow and Tyson Apostol fourth/fifth and then it came down to Danni Boatwright and Wendell Holland. In the end Wendell was able to keep his small lead over Danni and so he earned the tokens. Despite losing, Rob continued even after his loss was confirmed just to prove that he’s not a quitter.
8:17 p.m. – Back at the main camp, Nick was happy to see the fights growing between Jeremy/Ben and Sarah/Tony. He decided to pull in Denise and Michele as a potential final three deal, with them pulling in Kim as a fourth. Nick’s angle was to eliminate Tony, Jeremy and Sarah because they’re all people he thinks he can’t beat in the end. At the same time, Sarah and Tony were concerned about finding the idol placed back into the game with Sophie’s gone. Eventually everyone else got in on the hunt for it, which gave Ben time to talk to Tony about how Kim is making a move against him. While they were chatting Ben found the idol! Out of instinct he tried to hide it from Tony, but Tony saw it and called him out on it so now they both know the other has a hidden idol and are forced to trust each other.
8:24 p.m. – For the immunity challenge the players had to hold their hand above their head longest to prevent a bucket of water from tipping over. This time both the last man and last woman standing would win immunity and two fire tokens each, leaving only six players vulnerable to the next vote. After five minutes, Ben was already asking if they’d be offered food to step down, but Jeff denied that request. And then just like that, Jeremy dropped, Ben touched the structure and had to bow out and Sarah dropped. With only two guys left, Nick tried to cut a deal with Tony to give him one of the tokens if he’d like him have the immunity, but Tony shot that down respectfully saying he wants to get a third immunity in a row.
8:28 p.m. – At the 15 minute mark Jeff brought out chocolate, peanut butter and milk for anyone that would step down. Quickly, Kim stepped down and then Michele agreed to join, giving Denise immunity. And then Nick asked Tony if he’d give him a fire token if he stepped and after Tony agreed Nick stepped down, too, giving Tony another immunity!
8:35 p.m. – With Tony safe, Kim’s plan to oust him was put on hold. She, Michele, Ben, Nick and Denise all spoke to agree to vote Jeremy out instead which put Michele in a bad position because he’s been close to her. Later, Ben told Tony that the original plan was to blindside Tony instead and told him that it was Kim leading the charge. Tony used that information to take to Nick who at first lied and then tried to weasel his way out of responsibility for it by further throwing Kim under the bus. Obviously that put Tony in motion to try to turn the vote against Kim instead.
8:39 p.m. – Tony spoke to Sarah who tried to convince him to still vote Jeremy out and then Nick told Kim that Ben told Tony about the vote. So Tony went to Ben again and did his best to convince him that Nick is working with the other side and pleaded with him to agree to go after Kim this time instead. Elsewhere, Michele went to Jeremy to tell him that it’s going to be him tonight and offered to give him her 50/50 coin. Then Tony talked to him and said that he needs to make amends with Ben and get him to vote with them against Kim. So as they prepare for tribal it looked like both Jeremy and Kim were on the chopping block and it might depend on Ben and/or a 50/50 coin? Yikes.
8:48 p.m. – At tribal Jeff wanted to know the fallout from the Sophie vote. It was made clear that once again things had shifted around and people were playing vote by vote rather than in blocks or alliances of any kind. The jury seemed shocked that anyone voluntarily stepped out of the immunity challenge, but both Michele and Kim regret doing it. Once again there was a lot of whispering going on during tribal with people checking in to see if the vote was Jeremy or Kim. Sarah and Ben were completely over it, but it was Denise that got the most aggressive when she put her hand in Jeremy’s face, shutting him down from any more conversation and asking for the vote to happen.
8:54 p.m. – After the votes were tallied, Jeff opened the floor for idols and advantages. Tony took that time to ask how Sarah feels and then offered to play his idol for her, but Sarah told him not to and then Tony stopped Jeremy from playing the 50/50 coin. The votes were read: Jeremy, Kim, Jeremy, Jeremy, Kim, Kim, Kim, Kim. Good call Tony! And Sarah! On her way out, Kim left her tokens to Michele, Denise and Sarah.
NEXT TIME: It’s a two-hour episode with Ben in the hot seat with both the Jeremy/Michele pair and the Sarah/Tony pair.
Here are the answers to Gold Derby’s contest questions for “Survivor” 40, Episode 12:
Who will be voted out at tribal council? Kim Spradlin-Wolfe
Who will win Reward? No one
Who will win Immunity? Denise Stapley; Tony Vlachos
Will a hidden idol be played? No
Will anybody quit or be medevaced/removed? No
Be sure to make your predictions to influence our reality TV racetrack odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before the next episode airs on CBS. You’ll compete to win a spot on our Season 40 leaderboard and eternal bragging rights. See our contest rules and sound off with other fans in our reality TV forum. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.