Survivor Edge of Extinction episode 7: Challenge review

Photo: Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment ©2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Photo: Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment ©2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

The two challenges in yesterday’s episode of Survivor: Edge of Extinction determined the fate of two castaways in opposite ways.

Warning: Spoilers for episode 7 of Survivor: Edge of Extinction are ahead.

The Edge of Extinction residents got their long-awaited moment to fight their way back into the game. For the first time in Season 38 of Survivor, the castaways still in the game were made aware of what happened to the people they voted out. Before we get to the first Individual Immunity Challenge of the season, let’s take another look at how Rick rejoined the game.

Edge of Extinction Challenge:

The six castaways had to first make their way over a short rope crawl, collecting a bag along the way. After untieing knots, each person will have to assemble a pole long enough to reach a key behind a cage door. Once they unlock that, they move on to the final phase which is a vertical table maze in the shape of a snake.

This isn’t a new challenge by any means, as the locked door is a Survivor mainstay, and the snake maze was used just last season. However, the difficulty of this final ball maze always makes this challenge entertaining. You can rewatch this epic moment below.

Even with Chris’ advantage of practicing with a bamboo pole, it was Aubry who got through the cage door first. Chris and Devens weren’t far behind, with Reem and Wendy joining them soon after. It looked like the cage door portion was much shorter and easier than previous iterations.

However, because of Chris’ disadvantage of 30 knots assigned to him by Keith, the other four castaways got a few minutes to get a feel of the maze before Chris joined in. It was Wendy who took the lead early and just dropped before getting it in the hole, doing a great job despite all the tics she was battling.

Then it came down to Chris and Devens. After Chris gained the lead, he dropped just inches away from the finishing hole. With no competition in sight, Rick slowly maneuvered his way into the hole, giving him the opportunity to re-enter the game!

Edge of Extinction Challenge Rankings:

Creativity: 1/5

Difficulty: 2.5/5

Entertainment Value: 4/5

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Immunity Challenge:

The first Individual Immunity Challenge of the season tested the castaways balance and endurance. Each player has to stand on a narrow beam while holding a long pole over their heads, balancing a statue at the end of it. At regular intervals the castaways have to move up their beam, making their platform more narrow.

We’re used to seeing this type of challenge but in its original version where the players are holding their poles vertically up in the air, not horizontally over the heads. In fact, both Wentworth and David won a version of this challenge before, but this slightly tweaked iteration has only been featured in Ghost Island. Here’s another look at yesterday’s Immunity Challenge.

Ron and Gavin dropped their statue fairly quickly, and Wardog lost it on the first transition. Then Rick was eliminated, creating a relieved look from Kelley and Lauren. The strong wind claimed Victoria and Aurora’s statue soon after.

Following another transition, Wentworth’s hands went numb and she dropped. Then came the final phase of the beam, which took out Eric, Julia, and David, leaving only three left. After looking so solid for 40 minutes, Joe lost his balance and dropped his statue. Julie outlasted Lauren, giving the oldest player remaining in the game her first Immunity Necklace!

Immunity Challenge Takeaways:

This is a type of challenge that I find gives the castaways a fairly even playing field. Some of the big physical threats in Joe, Lauren, and Julia made it far, but it also gave people like Julie and David a chance to step up, and wow, Julie definitely proved that she is here to win it.

Now that Joe is out of the game (for the time being), the battle for Individual Immunity is wide open. It will be interesting to see who takes advantage of this perfect opportunity.

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Immunity Challenge Rankings:

Creativity: 2/5

Difficulty: 3/5

Entertainment Value: 4/5