Ben "Benry" Henry gets voted out of 'Survivor: Nicaragua'
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/09/2010
Ben "Benry" Henry got served a helping of karma, as he learned that turning on a member of his alliance to save himself instead only led to his own demise.
Benry, a 24-year-old club promoter from Los Angeles, CA, became the fourteenth castaway eliminated from Survivor: Nicaragua and the twelfth member voted out of the competition during Wednesday night's broadcast of the 21st edition of the CBS reality series.
"I'm extremely surprised. I just got straight blindsided -- not what I was expecting coming into this Tribal Council -- I'm definitely going to have to assess or mastermind this idea of sending Benry home. I guess the other six remaining members see me as a threat, and I guess I gotta take that somewhat as a complement," Benry said following his ouster.
Survivor: Nicaragua's twelfth episode began on Day 28 following that night's quitting of NaOnka Mixon, a 27-year-old physical education teacher from Los Angeles, CA, and Kelly "Purple Kelly" Shinn, a 20-year-old nursing student from Mesa, AZ, who claimed they could not longer stand the elements and lack of food.
NaOnka and Purple Kelly's exits left Matthew "Sash" Lenahan, a 30-year-old real estate broker from New York, NY, as the swing vote between the game's two remaining three-person alliances -- Chase Rice, Holly Hoffman and Jane Bright or Benry, Jud "Fabio" Birza and Dan Lembo.
The next day, Sash told his fellow castaways he planned to play his hidden Immunity Idol at the game's next Tribal Council after coming to the conclusion that it had put a target on his back. In addition, Sash told Chase, a 24-year-old professional race car jackman from Fairview, NC, that he liked the idea of joining his alliance but admitted he was looking forward to what each group would offer him for his loyalty.
The following day, Day 30, the seven remaining castaways arrived for the Reward Challenge where they were met by the Survivor host Jeff Probst, who explained the rules.
The castaways were given a second chance to revisit challenges from earlier in the season. They had to complete a series of three rounds set up like an obstacle course, in which four people advanced past the first round, two progressed following the second round, and the first to finish the third round was declared the winner.
The winner of the Reward Challenge won the chance to be taken to a private resort and have a big meal, a shower and a good night sleep to get refreshed for the last nine days of the competition.
Chase, Jane, Benry, and Holly survived the first round, Chase and Benry completed the second round and moved onto the third, and finally Chase quickly defeated the last task and won the Reward Challenge.
Jeff then revealed Chase could choose two people to take with him, and he opted to take Holly, a 44-year-old swim coach from Eureka, SD, because she sacrificed her prior reward trip to get food and a tarp for the castaways, and Jane Bright, a 56-year-old dog trainer from Jackson Springs, NC, who he considered a loyal ally.
Afterward, while Chase, Holly and Jane were enjoying their reward, Chase recognized that he made a mistake in choosing Jane over Sash, as he told Sash earlier he would choose him for the reward if he won. Holly and Jane agreed that Chase made a poor decision, and Chase realized his flightiness could hurt him in the game by losing trust from others.
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Meanwhile, back at camp, Sash said he found Chase's idea of who to share the reward with stupid because he already had Jane's vote locked up and could use Sash's backing, as he held onto the Hidden Immunity Idol and was the game's swing vote.
In addition, Sash initially led Benry, Fabio and Dan to believe he was planning to ally with them before making some subsequent comments which caused Dan, a 63-year-old real estate executive from Watermill, NY, to point out it sounded like he hadn't actually really made a firm decision yet.
Chase, Holly and Jane returned from the resort on Day 31 and got concerned about Sash's commitment to their alliance and decided they needed to make him feel they trusted him 100% percent.
But later, Chase told Benry he'd be willing to vote Jane out because he knew he wouldn't win against her in the finals and Benry claimed he wanted to play the game with Chase and would vote off Fabio, a 21-year-old student from Venice, CA, if it meant he could stick around in the competition.
Chase also apologized to Sash for not choosing him, admitting he'd made a mistake. During their conversation, Chase also talked to Sash and promised him he would take him to the game's final Tribal Council if he agreed to join his alliance.
Sash agreed with the terms and told Chase and Holly that Benry was lying about his willingness to vote out Fabio -- resulting in Chase, Sash and Holly deciding that Benry should go before Fabio as he was a greater physical threat.
Meanwhile, Benry became leary of Sash's loyalties and approached Chase, Sash and Holly for a conversation in which he pledged to turn on Fabio and Dan and vote for Fabio in order to make it to "one more Tribal Council" but campaigned for Jane's ouster if Fabio won the upcoming Immunity Challenge.
On Day 32, the castaways arrived at the Immunity Challenge and Jeff explained the rules.
They each would be attached to a hitching rail where they must untangle themselves until they released enough rope to reach their bags of gold coins. The first three people to do so would advance to the final round, where they were required to solve a three-dimensional gold coin puzzle. The person to solve the puzzle first would receive immunity.
Fabio, Benry and Sash completed the rope task and moved onto attempting to complete the puzzle, and then Sash finished the puzzle first and won the Immunity Challenge.
Afterward, Sash gushed about how much control he had gained.
"I pulled out a win today and it feels great. Right now I'm a triple threat -- individual immunity, the hidden Immunity Idol and I'm in the majority alliance. So, at this point, I'm in complete control and can't wait for the final Tribal Council to win my million," he said.
Following the Immunity Challenge, Chase and Sash continued to let Benry and Dan -- who had later also agreed to the plan to the vote off Fabio -- believe that Fabio would be getting voted off next and told Fabio that Holly would be the tribe's Tribal Council target.
The seven remaining castaways arrived for Tribal Council that night, and although Sash was presented as the swing vote, his help was unnecessary as Chase's alliance tricked Benry and Dan into believing they'd vote for Fabio, which just served as a distraction from the fact they were going to vote out Benry.
Fabio voted for Holly, Dan and Benry voted for Fabio, and Holly, Jane, Chase, and Sash all voted for Benry. Benry's elimination came as a complete surprise to him, as he was side-swiped into believing he'd be safe and Fabio would be eliminated.
"Unbelievable," Benry said after his torch was snuffed and he left Tribal Council.