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Episode 5: "The End of Innocence" (Air date: March 28th, 2002; filmed November 24-26, 2001)

Our Picks:
Boot: Gabriel.
RC: Maraamu
IC: Maraamu

Here's this week's misdirection from CBS:
Episode 5: "The End of Innocence" 
View the web preview here. (Maybe, CBS seems slow to activate it this week).
What CBS says What we think it means What actually happened
(1) The tribe that wins the reward challenge gets to raid the other tribe's camp.  (1) The tribe that wins the reward challenge gets to raid the other tribe's camp.  Innocent Neleh a plunderer? (1) The tribe that wins the reward challenge gets to raid the other tribe's camp.  Whew! That was a tough one.  And innocent Neleh was there!
(2) One castaway's innocent comment sparks a flurry of activity.  (2) This would appear to refer to the scene of John interrogating Gabe about keeping Rotu together.  Since John is the one asking the questions, perhaps Gabe struck a deal with the ex-Maraamu (or at least appears to have)? (2) Yup.
(3) The new Maraamu celebrates its discovery of a new source of food. (3) Kathy's got crabs! (3) Yup.
(4) A new leader seeks to assume power at Rotu. (4) Again, this suggests the ex-Maraamu are fixing to divide and conquer. Rob may be their nominal leader, but we suspect the real "smart guy" sitting back and letting others do the dirty work is Vee. Although Rob is already the evil one, so he'll get the face time. (4) Partial credit here. It was John, but Rob did do what we said here.

RC - Piracy!  Arrrrr!
Winning tribe gets to pilfer stuff from the losing tribe's camp.  Sounds good and all, but what is there to steal from Maraamu?  Leftover fruit rinds?  Sarah's scabs?  Rotu, on the other hand, has built a small city, not much of which is totable, but they at least have all that fishing gear, lanterns and blankets.  Seems one-sided.  The post-ep4 preview showed Gina, in different clothes than at the RC, saying "It was the first time I'd felt as though I was on a real team."  This was placed after the scene of Maraamu praying ("Why do you hate us so much, God?"), which appears to be pre-challenge (similar, but not identical clothes, consistent with early morning, cool temperatures).  Could Gina's happy team spirit have been lit by an actual Maraamu challenge win?  What else would she be happy about?  Helping to boot former tribemate Sarah?  Losing the previous IC?  Logically, fractures on Rotu also make more sense as a story line if they've just lost a challenge.  And since we almost never see the IC winners after they get back to camp, we think this suggests a Maraamu win here.

The tribes arrive for the RC.  Note the color-coded poles in the background, along with palm fronds near Maraamu.

RC talk for Rotu. When viewed more closely, the poles seem to have chunks cut out of them.

Maraamu, ready to unleash their prayer power at the RC.

Gina, expressing her joy at being on a real team.

Kathy's got crabs!

The tribe that prays together may win immunity.

IC - ???
New previews showing John stumbling around blindfolded appear to be part of the RC, based on clothes.  The episode title ("End of Innocence") suggests many things (Neleh and Paschal stealing from their former tribesmates, cracks in Rotu, for starters), one of which is a Rotu IC loss, and a virginal TC trip for the five original Rotus.  New evidence uncovered by Nivek1212 of votedoff.tv shows a shot of Rob voting  in the ep1 TC, wearing a blue buff.  This tells us Rotu attends a TC in either ep5 or ep6.  This is as good a time as any.

Boot - Gabe
Gabe is the seemingly dark-horse candidate for expulsion, but makes the most sense.  John interrogates him about bringing Rotu back together in the preview, suggesting they're on opposite sides of a split.  If John and/or Tammy hook up with the ex-Maraamu, they could take out Gabriel, the de facto Rotu leader, and still be guaranteed at least an even 5-5 split when/if Kathy, Neleh, Paschal and/or Gina rejoin them at the merge.  But their odds would be better if they could get Robert to join them first, then boot Rob or Sean when the numbers are good (barring immunity).  And remember, this is "The End of Innocence," and who was the innocent king of the "Love Tribe"?  It sure as hell wasn't Rob.  Many of Gabe's confessionals have been about the whole Love Tribe aura, so in addition to being a leader, he is also the symbol of Old Rotu.  Since that tribe seems likely to be broken up, he's the one to go.

Other, less likely possibilities: Rob, Gina, Neleh.
Rob's story has come full circle - from the goofy chicken-chaser, to the Godfathah, to a sneering, lazy bigot.  He got knocked down a peg with the switch, but he still has one more to go, in the grand scheme of things, unless he quickly becomes edited as actually strategic, rather than just misguided about his own power.  The focus in the previews on division among the old Rotus may be designed to conceal an obvious boot, although the scene actually suggests Rotu is tight after all.  Patricia and Peter both expressed great love for Rob in their post-boot interviews, as well, suggesting he's not long for the game.  Then again, if they only saw him in days 1-6, he seemed pretty nice then.  MB has promised a villain, and he's quickly growing into the role.

Gina sure seems to be fitting in with the ex-Rotus now on Maraamu.  She's finally part of a team, blah blah blah.  Yeah, well, she's still most likely number one on Paschal and Neleh's hit list if Maraamu returns to TC yet again.  She's bonded a bit with Kathy, though, but would Kathy double-cross Paschal and Neleh?  Maybe, since if they could beat Neleh in a 2-2 tie, they're both safe until the merge.  Gina has to go meet Hunter again sometime soon, so she's likely the first to go, and most likely Kathy stands by her ex-Rotu mates.  Kathy at least seems safe this episode, since she finds food, and it's unlikely Neleh and Paschal would betray their old tribe to boot her (yet). 


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