Survivor season 35, episode 7 recap: Gettin’ to mergin’

Photo: Screen Grab/CBS ©2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved
Photo: Screen Grab/CBS ©2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved /

The merge is here and the game is truly underway as we recap everything that happened on Survivor Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers episode 7.

Everyone knew that the merge was coming on Survivor season 35, episode 7 entitled “Get to Gettin'”. However, what no one knew was how that would play out in the game, and who that would leave going home. Let’s see what happened with the game dramatically changing.

Chrissy came out of Tribal Council excited about her social spot. She felt that she had set herself up well and was controlling things and/or her own destiny at this point.  Ben, at the Yawa tribe, continued to be worried about Cole, but also offered that Yawa could dominate in a merge scenario with five players though.

Ashley, Devon and Levu tribe were struggling meanwhile. Ashley opened up by talking about running on empty and Devon was most definitely running on empty. It looked as if the entire tribe was walking through knee-deep mud because they had no calories left to burn. If only there were something coming to help with hunger…

…like the merge. Ben noted that the merge is the first step to a million dollars. And in terms of energy, they got their wish as the merge feast was on fleek with Outback Steakhouse catering it all, even cooking the steaks to everyone’s specifications.

Devon, able to drink beer and finally eat, was his normal level of stoked about the merge. Meanwhile, the ever-ravenous Cole talked about eating 8,000 calories regularly. No wonder the guy passed out not long ago. Meanwhile, Chrissy was annoyed by Joe immediately, saying that she was glad that she didn’t have to deal with him before now.

As for alliances emerging, Jessica was thinking Yawa 5 plus Joe and Desi. That seemed to make the most sense, though there could be a bit of trouble with that plan. Chrissy was glad to be back with Ben, but he was wanting to be secretive. Still, his former alliance with her and his presence in the Yawa 5 put him in a highly interesting position.

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In this same light, Devon and Ryan were back together again, thinking Heroes and Hustlers alliance. Devon tried to recruit Lauren for that alliance, but Lauren wanted to stay strong with the Yawa 5 and told Dr. Mike about plan to vote out the Healers. Mike expected a war because of all of this.

Speaking of that Yawa 5, Ben kept getting fed up with Cole, the latest bout of anger coming after he ate cinnamon sticks a bit gluttonously. Then things seemed to be starting to fracture for Yawa, seeming as if it was either Cole or Joe that’s on the chopping block and with potential flippers lying in the weeds.

Next up was the first individual Immunity Challenge, and the sweet, sweet necklace was revealed (seriously, this thing looks awesome. Players had to spin a ball around the inside of a hoop while periodically moving down a narrowing balance beam. The ball dropping or the player falling would put the player out, which Ryan found out quickly as the first out.

Dr. Mike was the next out, falling while trying to make a joke, while Jessica was next out after the players took the next step. As they stepped to the narrowest part of the beam, three men dropped out (Ben, J.P., Devon, in order) before Lauren was also taken out. Joe was next seemingly out of nowhere, taking us down to four players remaining.

After 10 minutes, Cole seemed to be losing his balance and, as he tried to focus on that, he dropped. Looking over at that elimination, though, Chrissy also lost her concentration and dropped. That left Desi and Ashley duking it out, lasting 38 minutes as Jeff trolled Ryan. At that point, Probst made the call to have both players move both feet to the narrow part. That claimed Ashley right there, giving Desi the first individual Immunity win.

There was a ton of talk back at camp regarding Ben. For starters, he talked to Cole about sticking with him, and said he would stay with him if it made sense strategically. Meanwhile, Joe planted seeds in Cole’s head about Ben potentially flipping. Meanwhile, the Yawa 5 said that they were going to go after Chrissy.

Speaking of Chrissy, she was savvy to things potentially going awry at Tribal Council. She knew that Joe or Cole might get an idol played for them. Thus, she floated the idea of voting Jessica. However, this all left Ben in the middle — able to go with the Yawa 5 or to vote out Healers.

Tribal Council undoubtedly got a bit hectic. They talked about alliances and comfort, but Joe kept things 100 (as he does) and pulled out his idol to say that everyone needed to decide what they were going to do. That made things uncomfortable for everyone as everyone went in to vote, which left things strange and uncertain — especially when Joe played the idol for himself.

The votes started being read, and it was clear that it would come down to either Chrissy or Jessica. Back-and-forth the votes went, until it was the latter that was voted out — Ben declaring his allegiance still lied with Chrissy and making the game that much more interesting.