Heading into the fifth episode of “Survivor 44,” all three tribes had just been shaken up when Carson Garrett joined Ratu, Jaime Lynn Ruiz joined Soka and Josh Wilder joined Tika (they also each earned temporary immunity idols). Gold Derby’s odds predicted that Kane Fritzler or Josh would be the next person to have their torch snuffed by Jeff Probst, but what actually went down on Wednesday night?
Below, read our minute-by-minute “Survivor 44” Episode 5 recap/live blog of “The Third Turd” to find out what happened Wednesday, March 29, 2023 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 annoys you the most and who you think will ultimately join the “Survivor” winners list and take home the $1 million grand prize.
Here are the current “Survivor 44” tribe breakdowns (click on each name to be brought to their individual profiles):
RATU TRIBE: Brandon Cottom, Kane Fritzler, Matthew Grinstead-Mayle, Lauren Harpe,, Carson Garrett
SOKA TRIBE: Matt Blankinship, Heidi Lagares-Greenblatt, Frannie Marin, Danny Massa, Jaime Lynn Ruiz
TIKA TRIBE: Yamil “Yam Yam” Arocho, Carolyn Wiger, Josh Wilder
Keep refreshing/reloading this “Survivor 44” live blog for the most recent updates.
8:00 p.m. – “Previously on ‘Survivor’!” In the fourth episode, Soka and Ratu won the reward challenge, taking home tarps of different sizes. Carson, Jaime and Josh were chosen to go on the journey, and to their surprise they learned that they’d be switching tribes (they were also given temporary idols that would expire when all the castaways were living on the same beach). Later, Soka and Ratu won the immunity challenge, sending Tika to tribal council yet again. There, Sarah Wade was eliminated after Josh used his idol to save himself. Who will be voted out tonight?
8:01 p.m. – Left out of Carolyn Wiger and Josh’s plan, Yamil “Yam Yam” Arocho was concerned with not being the odd man out at the remaining Tika tribe. After previously working with Carolyn, he was forced to debate if he could trust her going forward. She explained that he’s just mad he was left out, but that he did nothing to make her feel comfortable that he and Sarah were going to work with her. Carolyn was also unsure who she would want to work with in future votes, thinking that going with Josh might be what’s actually best for her game because of his connections to the large Soka tribe.
8:03 p.m. – At Ratu on Day 10, Matthew Grinstead-Mayle was still feeling the effects of the shoulder injury he suffered on Day 2. The pain had not subsided and he realized that the previous night was the worst he’s had in terms of pain management. It was clear that he’d have to address the situation sooner rather than later. Meanwhile, Carson was in much higher spirits because as the newbie to the tribe he felt like he was making in-roads with original Ratu members, notably with Matthew and then Kane who connects with him on a “nerd” level. Carson liked that no one at Ratu sees him as a strategic threat and noticed that he seems to be making better personal connections with each of them than they’re making with one another.
8:11 p.m. – Danny Massa was taking time at Soka to teach what he’s learned about the power of intentional breathing in meditative practice to the rest of his tribe. That “high vibe tribe” mentality spoke directly to Jaime Lynn Ruiz who felt at home in a way that she didn’t at Ratu. Jaime used that connection to get close to her new Soka friends, but acknowledged that Matt Blankinship might be “crawling” while the rest of them are running. Jaime approached Frannie Marin with her thoughts on Matt, which clued Frannie in to Jaime being unaware of how close she and Matt are. Matt and Frannie continued to get close to one another in the game, but both privately confirmed in their confessionals that they have a crush and will explore that outside of the game.
8:14 p.m. – Yam Yam did his best to mend fences with Josh by giving him space to “rant on” him, but they both were angry at the other for being dishonest. That put them in a tough position about whether they’d work together or not. Josh noticed that Yam Yam’s attitude changed now that he realized he’s not the only person with power in the game. Knowing that he was vulnerable without an immunity idol now, Josh spent time overnight creating a fake idol from beads at tree mail. He showed his previous idol note to Yam Yam in order to scare him away from targeting him. They did attempt to bridge the gap between them by opening up about their coming out stories, but afterward neither of them knew if that was enough to trust the other within the game.
8:23 p.m. – For the next immunity challenge, the tribes sent three members into an obstacle course while tied together that ended with a two-hander table maze. The first tribe to finish would earn immunity and the right to select a member from each tribe to go on this week’s journey. The second tribe to finish would also get immunity, but the last tribe would be sent to Tribal Council. Ratu decided to sit Matthew out again as well as Lauren Harpe. At Soka, Jaime and Frannie sat this one out.
8:27 p.m. – Tika got threw the stick maze first, followed by Soka and then Ratu. Soka fell behind in the second phase, but all tribes were evened out through the third stage where they had to carry buckets of water over a teetering net. Ratu gained again by completing the third phase first, but Soka and Tika were through right behind them and so all three tribes got to work on the maze at about the same time. Brandon Cottom and Carson secured the win by landing their three balls at the end of the maze first and while Tika struggled, Danny and Matt got the three balls landed for Soka to earn safety as well. For the journey, Ratu decided that Brandon would go from their tribe, Danny from Soka and Carolyn from Tika. Before Jeff sent the tribes back to camp, Jeff asked Matthew to stick around to speak with medical based on the fact that he is still wearing the shoulder sling and continues to sit out challenges.
8:36 p.m. – With Jeff and medical, Matthew got emotional as he described his fear that he’s not eating enough in order for his body to heal properly. Based on the examination, medical explained that it sounds like Matthew has a large tear in his shoulder and based on his pain assessment it might be best for him to leave. Still, it sounded like the decision would be left up to Matthew to make and he was going to weigh his long-term health against his drive to stay in the game.
8:38 p.m. – Josh and Yam Yam were left alone at Tika camp while Carolyn was away where they agreed that they should target Carolyn despite not working together last time. Yam Yam said that Carolyn is not as clueless as she tries to get across and she might be “too emotional” to trust. Josh suggested that they independently talk to Carolyn later to compare stories to see who she may actually be working with.
8:40 p.m. – On the journey, Brandon, Danny and Carolyn discovered that instead of a chance at a game advantage, they were able to enjoy each other’s company without risk for a light snack together. While sharing lunch wraps, Carolyn shared that she’s worried of going home at the looming Tribal Council and declared that Josh used an idol which meant that Jaime and Carson both had one. Danny and Brandon were excited to share time together because they both were eyeing one another as possible alliance members because they’d need to use each other as shields. Carolyn asked if she was included in their deal, and they said yes, but the language Danny and Brandon used (“people like us,” referencing their challenge strength) made Carolyn acutely aware that she was being dismissed as not a threat. Brandon told Carolyn she’s “someone to keep around” because she hasn’t proven herself to do well in challenges. Carolyn knew they were already underestimating her because she’s already achieved so much.
8:49 p.m. – Upon her return from the journey, Carolyn immediately signaled to Yam Yam behind Josh’s back that it should be the two of them working together against Josh. She explained that Danny and Brandon were bonding with each other and named Josh as someone they could team up with at merge for a “meat brigade.” Josh didn’t like that it was putting a target on his back when he wasn’t really linked with them at all. Feeling vulnerable again, she told Carolyn he has another idol he’s playing. She asked to see the idol, but Yam Yam immediately recognized the beads as being from Tree Mail and then Carolyn recognized his note as the same exact one he showed her from his previous idol. Yam Yam and Carolyn found it hilarious that Josh thought he was passing his idol off as a real, bonding them closer to work together again.
8:53 p.m. – Josh still pressed Yam Yam to work with him to get rid of Carolyn, but Yam Yam was unsure about it. He tried asking Carolyn if she earned anything at the journey, and though she said no he didn’t necessarily believe her. She tried to stress that the looming “bro alliance” is something they can’t let form and that it would be in their best interest to get rid of Josh as soon as possible. Carolyn insisted to Yam Yam that she doesn’t have an idol, refusing to admit that she does because it’s too early for her to use it.
8:56 p.m. – As they prepared to head to Tribal Council, Jeff arrived by boat to disclose that Matthew had in fact decided to exit the game due to his injury. Due to Matthew’s exit, the three of them no longer would need to vote someone out and so in an unexpected turn of events their games would go in a direction that it otherwise wouldn’t have gone in.
NEXT TIME: Merge! Josh tells others that “Yam Yam’s a snake” and Matt finds his head spinning as they head to their first Tribal Council as a group.
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