Survivor 9 Spoilers... and other crappy things the True Dork Times offers to slake your Survivor: Vanuatu thirst
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S3, S4, S5, S6, S7.

Episode 5
"Earthquakes and Shakeups"

Filmed July 8-9, 2004
Airs October 14, 2004

Click below for:
RC speculation
IC speculation
Boot speculation
Video resources
Ep5 promo vidcaps
CBS Ep5 web promo


Episode descriptions
CBS: -Both tribes receive unexpected visits from Vanuatu natives bearing a message with consequences for all the castaways.
- A massive earthquake rocks the island, literally shaking things up for the tribes.
- A trip for one tribe leads to bonding and makes one castaway very happy.
- One castaway is caught by a tribemate while attempting to communicate secretly with a member of the opposing tribe.
SWITCH and REWARD CHALLENGE/ Diving - Lopevi wins?
If you're like us, you're thinking, "WTF is this 'one chief' bull?" Apparently, Rory is more like us than we think. Maybe it's that he helps the damn canoe land, but Lea gets to wear all the trappings of power. Screw that! And, based on gender preferences in the opening ceremony, we're guessing the Vanuatu natives are like us as they pull up to the Yasur tribe's beach. Ami appears to be taking the various trinkets for the women, unless it's Scout, as Bungler suggests. But whatever. Not clear how the switch is involved, but since both challenges feature switched tribesmates, it must happen early, as does the earthquake. Presumably, forcing someone to be chief may play a role in the mechanism of the switch. There's no evidence for anyone switching beyond Twila and Rory, and there's evidence against every woman switching, except Twila (obviously) and Julie. For the men, there is evidence against Lea, John K., and Chris switching. So we'll play it safe, and conclude that the only switchers are those we can see: Twila and Rory.
SWITCH pictures/ Click on thumbnails above for larger version

No, my name is not "Mr. T". Why the devil do you keep asking me that?

Please, take our fake cultural trinkets! That will be $5, please. No, we don't take Visa.

All right. Drop and give me 20, or I'll start whacking y'all with my totem stick thingy here.

As for the reward challenge itself, an identically-clothed Jeff Probst both tells the contestants to drop their buffs, and comments on the length of two people's dives. That suggests reasonably strongly that the switch occurs immediately before the diving challenge. Since both challenges feature switched people, that further suggests diving is the RC. This would appear, on the surface at least, to favor Lopevi. If they win, that might explain the bonding going on on the reward trip, where Twila gets to escape hanging out with the womenfolk.

We note that those gossip-mongers at Vanuatu Survivor claimed:
Mele Cascades was closed for a 'private' function to film a survivors challenge 'reward' on Thursday 8th. The winning contestants had a full-on meal supplied to them near the waterfall in which they were swimming with nobody to bother them. The next challenge is being stage today in a pig pen. Presumably contestants have to find something racing around in a dirty smelly pig pen with 'ferocious' wild pigs in order to win a live pig to eat.
The reward-at-Mele-Cascades part fits with the filming schedule, and the CBS clues. The composition of the challenges seems less likely, although the pig challenge could well take place in Ep6.
REWARD CHALLENGE pictures/ Click on thumbnails above for larger version

Letting his hat do the talking: "I love you, Lopevi!"

Hey Rory, quit chatting up the ladies!

"Please let the guys drown, please let them drown!"
IMMUNITY CHALLENGE/ Running? - Lopevi wins?
The running challenge itself, originally suggested by aka Ives at MESS, appears to be for immunity, and was cleverly disguised with "shaking" camerawork in the Web Promo to resemble contestants running from the eartquake. It's not clear that this is necessarily the IC, but we have to talk about it somewhere. Given the relative compositions of the teams, we suspect Yasur may also have a disadvantage here. The men are presumably well-fed now, and John K. appears quite speedy. If Scout foolishly sat out the diving, she has to run here, and she's old and has an artificial knee - probably not good. Plus, the women are now saddled with Rory, who appears none too fleet of foot. We'd call this a slight edge to Lopevi.

IMMUNITY CHALLENGE pictures/ Click on thumbnails above for larger version

Apparently, there was a problem with the Steadycam for this challenge. Oh well. Run, Johnny, run!

Please, Leann, just give up. You're stuck with Rory.

We're too lazy to make an animated GIF, but in the ad, CBS made flames come out of Eliza's butt. Har!

BOOT/ Lisa
Lisa sticks with her old tribe, it appears, as does Eliza. She's definitely the next woman to go, but so soon? On the other hand, she does say "Oh no!" in the preview, which may be symbolic. After all, turning your back on alliance-mates is not generally a good long-term strategy, Rob Cesternino excepted. Also, Orangeena says she's gone, and who are we to question Orange saucers? Or, for that matter, MickeyKnocks's cryptic lunch orders?

John K. is the last youngster standing in Lopevi. Not a good spot on a team accustomed to losing. Still, if you're looking for him in the previews, it's like he's already gone, or on the run at least. Hard to boot someone you can't see, right? That's enough out of you, Zoe and Erin.

Travis is known not to make the final nine, and he expressed his desire to go home last week. His promo appearances are negative: wincing in fear, wiping his forehead in shock. But his boot wouldn't make internal sense at this point, at least without some miraculous turn of events that would save John K.'s skin.

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