Notes: This episode should better have been called "Magical Rafe," since he somehow conjured not one, but two challenge wins out of almost zero effort. He did not participate at all in the RC, but thanks to Nakúm winning all three heats in which Judd steamrolled the opposition, Rafe was eligible to compete in the individual IC. Where, thanks again to Judd, Rafe essentially had the answer staring him in the face, but it took Judd looking over at his tiles and *telling* him the answer *several times* before he realized the correct tile order and "won" the necklace.
Then Rafe was given the added bonus of attending Yaxhá's Tribal Council, and awarding individual immunity to someone (without their knowledge, prior to the vote), after hearing the Tribal Council proceedings. To their credit, the ex-Nakúms at New Yaxhá put on quite a performance, heaping praise on Brian and Amy, the two people they were actually considering booting. Rafe seemingly fell for this ruse, promptly wasting his immunity vote on Gary. Or maybe Rafe just voted for Gary because of the many meals of termites and ants they had shared. Who knows? Either way, Rafe received about 50% of the screen time in this episode, despite being at best peripherally involved in what was going on. Survivor: Guatemala, ladies and gentlemen.
Perhaps we're just bitter that we misremembered Brian's explanation of how voting for Bobby Jon could have worked (which actually aired on The Early Show the next day) as having been in the episode itself. Because it should have been there. It was the birth of the vote split: a planned 3-2-1 split, with the Yaxhá three voting Bobby Jon, while tricking the Nakúms into splitting their votes between Brian and Amy. Notably, Brian couldn't get any traction for this plan, mainly because Gary wanted to keep Bobby Jon, and also because Gary is perfectly okay with telling lies, but only if it's about not having been an NFL quarterback. All other lies are verboten.
So that split never came to pass, and instead Cirie wrangled the first successful version of this during the next season, in Panama. Still, just going through the motions and fleshing out Brian's scheme with actual screen time might have created more mystery at Tribal Council than the several minutes spent wondering whether Judd simply misremembered how many beers he'd consumed, or whether some other freakin' scumbag drank Judd's damn beer, man.
Maybe the editors felt they had enough to work with, what with Magical Rafe's magical Gary vote coming in at the end to save the day. Why distract from that?
Vote count: Nakúm Tribal Council
- Margaret received 6 votes, from Stephenie, Rafe, Lydia, Cindy, Judd, and Jamie (voted out, 6-1).
- Judd received 1 vote, from Margaret.
Vote count: Yaxhá Tribal Council
- Brian received 5 votes, from Danni, Gary, Bobby Jon, Brandon, and Amy (voted out, 5-1).
- Bobby Jon received 1 vote, from Brian.
- Gary received (sealed in an envelope, read after the vote) immunity from Rafe, which was moot.