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HOME > EPISODE SUMMARIES

Survivor: The Amazon - Episode 1 Summary

'Back to 5th Grade, But It’s Still Boys v. Girls' By SurvivinDawg


“The party never stops, on Selena Kyle’s answering machine.” said the soon-to-be Catwoman in Batman Returns. Well, Selena, the party just stopped. And we’re talking about the wrong super-hero, anyway.

This summary is dedicated to Dr. William Moulton Marston. He is the creator of the legendary Wonder Woman, Amazon princess, under the pseudonym “Charles Moulson”. He also contributed to the invention of the polygraph (no wonder the Magic Lasso makes people tell the truth, n’est pas? ). He created Wonder Woman so that “little girls would also have a super hero like the boys have.”

Well, Mark Burnett apparently has decided to do better. He attempts in this, the sixth edition of Survivor, to make no less than eight creations of Amazon women, and he made it boys vs. girls, so that all little girls watching will have a tribe of their own to root for.

Uh oh, a Mississippi River ferry boat is off course. Oh, never mind, that’s a boat taking the participants up the Rio Negro to their camps. Everyone is looking around, thinking the same thing: "What the HELL have I gotten myself into?" Most of the viewers are thinking the same thing... about watching this program.

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And a very ironic river name, considering Mark Burnett’s presentation of the black man in his previous editions of Survivor. In fact, this entire show is going to be dripping with irony (*drip... drip... drip...*) , and we’re going to be forced to watch 90 minutes of it.

Jeff Probst, a.k.a. Jiffy Probe and other less complimentary names, reads out the names in the following order, which brings me to my favorite part of writing an Ep. 1 summary: I get to introduce our new friends. Let’s meet them, shall we?

Jabaru – named after an indigenous bird, wearing yellow buffs:

Jeanne Hebert is a married, 41 year old Director of Marketing from N. Attleboro, MA. Her luxury item is edible massage oil. Her hobbies are cooking, working out with friends, and “creating new ways to have fun.” Seems to me that she was planning to have guys in her tribe .

Heidi Strobel is a single, 24 year old P.E.Teacher from Buffalo, Missouri. Her hobbies include running and writing poetry. Any guy thinking he’s going to out-physical her is in for a surprise. Her luxury item is a jump rope, which explains why the producers keep trying to get her into a bikini and use her luxury item.

Joanna Ward is a single, 31 year old Guidance Counselor from Orangeburg, SC. She has made some commercials, and is deeply religious. Her luxury item is a picture of her mom, who recently passed away.

Jenna Morasca is a single, 21 year old Swimsuit Model from VampKira’s haunt of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She competes in beauty contests, and she likes to hang out with her animals. Word on Spoiler Street is that she’s a couple of cards short of a full deck. Her luxury item is a “Zeta Crown”, which means either she’s a ZTA sorority queen or that she and Rob need to get together and discuss the Occult.

Christy Smith is a single, 24 year old that works professionally with the deaf. This is no surprise, as Christy is herself deaf. Her hometown is Basalt, CO. She’s no stranger to adventure, having done an Outward Bound trip to Alaska (I’m jealous.). Her luxury item is sage, which might make those little fish they catch more palatable... or have an adverse affect on Jenna...

Deena Bennett is a married, 35 year old Deputy District Attorney from Riverside, CA, assigned to the Sexual Assault Child Abuse Unit. Like our own AyaK and possibly others around here, she has a J.D. degree. She participates in triathalons, adventure racing... and sleeping (no surprise there). Hey Selena, Deena is a Batman fan. Deena’s luxury item(s) are water balloons, and we’ll just hold off guessing possible uses for them.

Janet Koth is a married, 47 year old Travel Agent/Abstinence Counselor (hey, aren’t those mutually exclusive terms?!?!) from Manchester, MO. She’s also a registered nurse. Her hobbies are drama, writing and, of all things, camping. (Oh really, Janet?) Her luxury item is her daughter’s teddy bear.

Shawna Mitchell is a single, 23 year old who works in Retail Clothing Sales (which probably means she was “discovered” working as a Macy’s sales girl; someone hook her up with Evan) from Redwood City, CA. Her luxury item is a soccer ball. Despite what you see later, Shawna actually got the most votes in the first Tribal Council.

Tambaqui – named after a fish, wearing blue buffs:

Roger Sexton is a married, 56 year old Vice President in a Construction Company from Valencia, CA. He is a veteran of Viet Nam with the United States Marines, and he is a chess player . He brought his dog tags as his luxury item. Leave it to Mark Burnett to cast someone with the name “Sex”ton in THIS particular Survivor.

Alex Bell is a single, 32 year old Triathalon Trainer from Los Angeles, CA. He recovered from alcoholism in his youth. His luxury item is a Finisher Medal from the 2001 Wildflower Triathalon. This guy just reeks boredom, and I wonder if we’re going to see very much of him during the show. (Foreshadowing? Me? )

Rob Cesternino is a single, 24 year old with a degree in broadcasting but working in the computers field (sounds familiar). From Wantaugh, NY, he likes to play chess and his luxury item is a Magic 8 Ball. DO NOT TAUNT MAGIC 8 BALL!!! (You’ve been warned.) Rob did a thesis on Reality TV shows in college, and could be a formidible strategist in this show (and more fun to watch than S-5’s Brian).

Butch Lockley is a married, 50 year old Middle School Principle from Olney, IL. His luxury item is a banner saying “Believe In Yourself”. He runs marathons (am I detecting a pattern here?) and enjoys hunting and “water sports”, which I take to mean boating and skiing, but could mean anything the way THIS show is starting to shape up...

Daniel Lue is a single, 27 year old Tax Accountant from Houston, Texas. Tape the show for him, I’m sure he’s very busy this time of year. His hobbies are the martial arts (hey, aren’t these supposed to help with balance, too?!?!? Just asking, is all...), bodybuilding and pro-wrestling. His luxury item(s) are magnetic rings.

Dave Johnson is a single, 24 year old rocket scientist (literally) from Pasadena, CA. A graduate of RPI, he currently works for NASA. His luxury item is (no surprise to Dilbert-engineer fans) a sketch pad and pencil. He’s ready for Survivor: last summer he pedaled across the United States with friends... and (by his own admission) only took three showers. And for those of you wondering about his spate of honesty after the Immunity Challenge? I’m not surprised: Among Dave’s favorite authors and books are Ayn Rand and Atlas Shrugged. Nuff said.

Ryan Aiken is a single, 23 year old model and actor from Ellicott City, MD. He used to be overweight, and worked himself into shape. Ironically (*drip, drip*) his birthday is February 13th, the day the airing of his dismissal from the game. His luxury item is a baseball bat and ball. I must confess to being delighted that he is gone, as his favorite college sports team is Georgia Tech.

Matthew Von Ertfelda is a single, 33 year old Restaurant Designer from Washington, D.C. His luxury item is his high school wrestling jacket. He has a culinary diploma (sign him up for Iron Chef!) from France. He has crossed the Darien Gap, a jungle region linking Panama and Columbia, and he went into the unmapped jungles of New Guinea to “track cannibals” (What, is he going to give them cooking tips?). By now it will be no surprise for you to read that he participates in sprint triathalons and marathons.

Okay, so I’m thinking “How will Mark Burnett abuse the black man now?” Nick was lazy, Clarence a thief, Sean was misrepresented, and Ted was a rapist. What more can MB do?--Wait!

There are no black men!

Call Jesse Jackson! MB has not even put a black man on the team! The ultimate insult! Discrimination! What, Mark, do you think the river being “Rio Negro” is enough?!?! But more on this later.

While none of these women look quite as good as Michelle Pfeiffer or Dangerkitty in a Catwoman suit, and most of these guys aren’t quite as ripped as Batman in the rubber suit, this is still the youngest and best looking Survivor group to date. Jiffy tells the story of the Spanish explorer in 1541 who found the Amazon women living there, and so named the area. To Matthew’s disappointment, Jiffy left out the part about the Amazon women having these Spanish guys for dinner when he discovered them.

“So, in honor of this, we’ve split you into men and women!” says Jiffy.

“Yay!” cheer the girls. “Aw, @#$%” the boys grumble. “They're the youngest, best looking group of Survivor women ever! Why us? Why boys v. girls NOW?” they cry out.

“Well, we wanted to do this for Survivor Five,” explains Jiffy, “but we couldn’t figure out which gender Erin was. So we waited until now.”

“Now SHOVE OFF!” yells Jiffy, a very appropriate choice of words. The guys cast off as the women struggle to get going. Both tribes make camp, and we begin Mark Burnett’s Odyssey of Irony. First are the names of the tribes: Jabaru is for a bird, while Tambaqui is a fish to be consumed. *drip, drip* goes MB’s editing machine

Then there is the general conversation of the guys. Ryan declares his strategy “blown”. Perhaps not the best choice of words, there, Ryan. Some women are not happy, either, as Jenna complains that she can’t use her Womanly Powers to manipulate the men, but by and large the women think that they can do it as well as the guys.

In a camera “confessional”, Ryan confesses that the women are good eye candy, but that he needs “useful people.” Ryan talking about useful people... ah, the irony is scintillating! *drip, drip*

Back at Jabaru, the Verizon guy shows up and asks “Can you hear me now.” Christy then has to tell everyone that she’s deaf. “Oh.” says the Verizon guy, “CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?!?!” *Sighhhh* The other girls take it in stride, but Christy gets left alone at the camp a lot.

To make a long story short (too late), the next several minutes are various Survivors talking good and bad about their new tribemates, intermixed with scenes of the guys making a successful camp and the girls struggling and not doing very well.

Butch hangs his banner. The guys make “Believe In Yourself!” their motto.

*drip, drip*

“We have expert fishermen,” observes Rob, “but the girls probably won’t catch a fish.”

*drip, drip*

“They can’t do it on estrogen alone in the Camp of the Vagina Monologues!”

*drip... drip... drip... drip...*

But some of the guys are taking note of who are the useful guys in camp. And Daniel and Ryan are not on that list. (it's being checked twice).

And what do the girls talk about? They talk about the guys talking about them. Heidi gives a little Bachelorette “Awww” when told that the guys were observing her bOObs during the tribe-assignments. As night falls, Christy can’t read what the other girls are saying, so she feels left out.

In the morning, the women complain about the bugs, and where they went. Christy says “Makes you wonder what went into our mouths.” Well, Christy, since the guys are miles away, I can eliminate eight potential items. Also, the girls do laundry. Jenna thinks that clean underwear is essential because “we’re in the jungle, things grow... especially down there where it’s dark!” *drip, drip* (this time... literally!)

Cut to a scene of an island that I swear to God looked just like the outline of Gilligan’s Island. And speaking of which, the guys are building a hut in their camp. Rob says that the girls are probably panicking as the camera pans the “Believe In Yourself!” sign.

*drip, drip*

Okay, who changed the channel? I’m suddenly watching Match Game. As the older guys work, the young guys are asking Magic 8 Ball who’s going to be hooked up. Ryan and Jenna? “Most likely.” says Magic 8 Ball. Daniel and Shawna? “Yes, Definitely!” Rob and Heidi? “Signs point to yes!”

Okay, guys. Pack up. Take down the Spoiler Board. Who needs it? We have the occupants of Loser Lodge now! Magic 8 Ball has told us so.

Oops, who changed the channel again? It’s American Idol, and Joanna is auditioning. I can just hear Simon now: “Simply dreadful.” Nuff said.

Meanwhile, Janet the camper is not feeling well, thinking that it’s more physically brutal than she anticipated. But the girls catch a fish! For those keeping score, that’s Gurlz 1, Boyz 0.

When the fish is presented at camp, Heidi has a priceless, stunned look on her face. “I can’t believe you raided the Boys camp and cut off one of their penises!” she wails. Reassured that it is, indeed, a fish, she calms down, but thinks the protein content won’t be much. They cook it in the Massage Oil and consume it, complete with comparisons to bodily functions I just don’t care to repeat here.

TREEMAIL!

”No, it’s not dinner,
but it’s a four part course,
If you’re not the winner,
You’ll have great remorse.

We made a big playground,
With puzzles and games,
If you lose this round,
Your torch might have no flames.

Believe In Yourself!
You can do it!
Win the Immunity Elf
And don’t give Jiffy s- -t!”

The guys are confident, to say the least. Deena says “The guys are real cocky.” Well, Deena, that IS the anatomical part that makes them guys. Meanwhile, Jenna has a plan, suggesting that Heidi just show the guys her bOObs. I don’t know if it’ll work, but I like that plan.

Jiffy explains the four-part IC challenge, and reminds them that the losing tribe will (thankfully for us) have to eliminate a player. He then reveals the Immunity Idol. Ah, there’s the black man for the show! The Immunity Idol is some sort of Blair Witch creation with a black face. And ugly as usual, but without the deadly spear of the Survivor: Thailand idol.

Jiffy also asks about fishing. The boys say they caught one, the girls don’t believe it. The girls say they caught one, the boys don’t believe it. Daniel even exclaims “Look at how skinny they are!” Jiffy hunts around for Wonder Woman’s magic lasso.

*drip, drip *

Go! The guys take a lead but the girls catch up in the first phase. Then there is a puzzle. The girls just can’t seem to get it. The guys take a commanding lead, and work to the balance beam. Six guys get across, but Daniel just cannot seem to make it. Hey! Daniel is the Mole!!!-- oh, sorry, wrong show.

But the girls do catch up. And as girls are biologically more (physically) balanced than guys, they get across the balance beam in one fell swoop. The guys get stuck on the final puzzle. Jiffy, in an obvious dub-in, wonders why a rocket scientist and a computer guy can’t solve the puzzle.

Then it’s the “Flying Fox’ as Jiffy calls it, but I call it the “U.S. Army Ranger Slide For Life.” Heidi flies through the air with the greatest of ease, gets the key and brings her fellow girls to the finish line. The Gurlz win!!!

The guys quit. “CUT!” yells Jiffy, “Finish the race!” “What for? We just got beat by a bunch of girls!” say the guys. “Don’t give me s- - t! You have to pretend to finish, to look even more stupid than you already did! It’s the price of losing!” The guys finish the race, looking even more stupid than they did before. Meanwhile, the girls celebrate. Janet even feels better. Who’s believing in themselves right about now?

We endure a few moments of MB false foreshadowing as the guys plot. Then it’s off to Tribal Council in a boat. They pull up to the TC “temple” and light their torches. Jiffy really digs into them. “It must be humbling, after being so confident before. You just got beat by a bunch of (eww..) girls!” he says. Guys try to dodge the questions left and right, especially Daniel, who is reminded of saying on the boat that the guys would win every challenge. Then it all goes downhill.

The vote is Shawna-Shawna-Shawna-Heidi-Jenna... oh, wait, they’re not voting yet, they’re having a Frat party! Jiffy starts it by asking “How about those girls, are they hot or what?” (or something like that ) and the guys start getting enthusiastic. Ryan tries to be nice, saying “each girl has special qualities”, drawing a laugh from Jiffy and everyone else. When they realize there is no beer at this party, Jiffy is forced to sum it up by pointing out that they’re in Tribal Council, but are still talking about hooking up with the girls. Well, Jiffy, you asked...

The real vote goes Ryan-Roger-Daniel-Ryan-Roger-Ryan-Roger... (one long-range scene to get the suspenseful music on cue...)

Ryan! Apparently, Ryan was not considered one of the “useful people” he wanted on his tribe. But, his farewell message is surprisingly cool about it all, reminiscent of Dood (Robb) in Survivor 5.

For this summary, my new logo is unveiled. And with this, I conclude my summary writing.

Sayonara.












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