But enough of that – I want to talk about my favorite challenge the show has to offer…The Auction. I love, love, love the Auction – and I only regret that they did away with the pooling of money and sharing. I mean, how else could Sugar give Matty Randy’s cookie? But the Auction still rocks. Each get $500 to bid and here’s a rundown of the fun….
1 – Donuts and ice coffee. It starts of slowly, as Chelsea goes the full Homer Simpson route for this one.
2 – Chips, guacamole and a margarita. Amazingly, Sabrina goes $400 for this one. She is someone to hang out with on Cinco de Mayo.
3 – Chocolate protein shake and bananas. Leif throws $100 at this one. Meh.
4 – Shower and toothbrush. Amazingly, Kim gets this for $40!! That’s how amazing she is – she even manages to get bargains.
5 – BLT, chips and ice tea. $180 to Kitten, who is stunned that there is bacon on a BLT. What did she think that stood for? Bitchin’ lettuce and tomato sandwich? And Kitten – that ain’t a bacon sandwich, THIS is a bacon sandwich.
6 – Peanut butter and chocolate. And may I add, a giant bowl full of peanut butter! I mean, who eats that much peanut butter in one sitting with no milk? Anyway, Kim emerges from the shower long enough to spend $240 on the snack. Unlike Heidi and Jenna – she didn’t have to get naked to get PB and Chocolate, she was conveniently already naked.
7 – Something I didn’t know…they could choose to pocket the cash if they wanted to! Has that always been the rule? Tarzan claimed to want to buy new shocks. In a deleted scene, Alicia said that she was saving her cash to spend at home as well. I had no idea they could do that – and wouldn’t you think that two people who need cash that badly would actually be trying harder to win the million?
8 – Letters from home. And no shopping sprees at home!! Alicia changes her plan and spends all her money on her letters. No bidding – no negotiation- all of it. Meanwhile, Tarzan has perhaps his most endearing moment on the show as he begins to weep and also matches her bid to get his own letter. And classily, he chooses not to read it in front of everyone. I have given him crap this season (NOTE – I mistyped that and said carp instead of crap, and noticed it on my review. That would have been a strange development), but that was a good moment.
9 – Advantage to the Immunity Challenge. Troyzan has been smartly waiting for this. He remembers the story of S11 winner Danni Boatwright, who used the unexpected clue at the auction to win a key challenge and trigger her reversal of fortune. Other cast members have not watched this show nearly enough – not that we really needed any clarification of that based on their strategies. It was basically Troyzan vs. Cha for this – as she was the only one who could match him. Except she backed out at $420, allowing him to win. In a deleted scene, she explained that she didn’t want to make a potential jury member angry at her, so instead, she angered five potential jury members. Good one.
10 – Mystery box. $160 to Kitten. It was revealed to be a giant cake that they call could share, but had to eat in 60 seconds. Whatever, just an excuse to see faces covered in frosting.
Love. The. Auction.
Elimination Challenge – Troyzan earns a free pass through the first stage of the rehash challenge. First stage, untie a giant rope. Second stage, the Top 4 bounces the coconut off a trampoline and break three targets. Last two use a slingshot to win a coconut tic-tac-toe game. Troyzan, Tarzan, Kim and Cha move past the first round. Cha isn’t in it, but the other three all hit two. Troy is the first to get his third, and then Tarzan. The Zans battle for the necklace!! It is surprisingly close, but Troyzan gets it, wins, and does some weird chicken dance before double fist bumping Probst. Even Tarzan notices and tells him to chill. Troy is frustrated, and the others are irritated.
Lastly, um, well, oh yeah, Leif got voted out. I had to remind myself at times that Leif was on this season. He’s the male, little person version of Purple Kelly, except without the quitting. Troyzan did what he had to do – as if he was reading my columns. He approached Tarzan, Leif, Cha and Alicia to join together. And he did it well – he presented it as their four-person alliance which he would join. He’d be the fifth. Very smart – worry about the F5 when you get there. However, watching their reactions to him – and his seemingly oversized hand – made it clear that the proposal failed. Alicia looked like we all do when stuck in a conversation with our uncle that likes to stockpile canned goods and keeps his cash in the freezer.