Previously on Survivor, Chuay Gahn and Sook Jai lived together as separate tribes, and Brian saw the enemy. Peachy -- evidently confused by the fact that Jake did better than every other member of his tribe in the underwater immunity challenge -- determined that he "hand[ed] Chuay Gahn their victory." There was an "uneasy atmosphere" around the camp, likely due in no small part to Ted's whining that he was unable to enjoy his tribe's win. Clay, had no such problems, and declared himself "damn happy." Jake squeaked his dismay over Sook Jai's losing situation before joining his tribemates in unanimously unloading Erin. Eight are left. Who will be voted out tonight?
It's Night 24, and shadows pass over the moon. As Chuay Gahn waits for Sook Jai to return from Tribal Council, Ted tells his tribe that everyone deserves what they get at this point in the game; he thinks they've earned their current good standing. Helen punctuates his commentary with exclamations of "I know!" and "Oh no!" and "No arguments about that!" and "Sing it, sister!" and "Right on, brother!" and "You don't have to tell me twice!" and "Amen!" and "Hallelujah!" and "No shit, Sherlock!" and "Darn tootin'." Except without those last few. Ted thinks the members of Chuay Gahn have earned the right to boil soup. He actually says that. In an interview, he posits that at the beginning of the game, no one could have anticipated Chuay Gahn's success. No one except Mark Burnett, that is, who not only anticipated it, but engineered it. Ted explains that they're in a very good position right now, with or without a merge. Brian tells the tribe that they've already had their "downtime" and now it's Sook Jai's turn. In an interview, Jan reveals that they tried to guess which member of Sook Jai would be voted out, and have narrowed it down to Erin or Ken. I'm not sure why we're seeing this now; we already know that Erin's gone, so there's nothing particularly suspenseful in it.
Chuay Gahn begins to enact their version of Sook Jai's current Tribal Council. This might be funny if any of them remotely sounded like the people they are attempting to imitate. As Penny, Helen simpers her indecision before Jan jumps in with bizarre and incomprehensible giggling about being a cheerleader. Helen finishes it off: "I think I'm gonna have to stab my friend Erin in the back and take her out." Jan then calls on "NYC himself!" and Brian begins an imitation of Ken that's more like an imitation of himself. He pretends to ask Peachy how his hair looks, then says he wants to make sure everyone knows he's a police officer and one of "New York's Finest." This, from the man who includes being a member of the "National Association of Homeowners" on his CBS bio. In any case, Jan yells, "And I don't want the women to know that!" As usual, I have no idea what she means. Brian concludes, "When you put on a uniform, you get all kind of bitches. Yo, yo, yo, yo." Jan tells us they felt bad that Sook Jai had to lose someone, but not bad enough to refrain from mocking them. And poorly so. She's just glad they're not losing a member of Chuay Gahn.
We're spared equally bad imitations of the rest of the tribe, as we join Sook Jai fumbling around in the dark on their way back from the Council. In an interview, Penny says it was hard to vote Erin out because now they have only three people compared to Chuay Gahn's five. If you were expecting her to say that voting Erin out was hard because they were such good friends, or because it meant breaking an alliance, then you're clueless about Penny -- or, as I now like to call her, "Penniless." The members of Sook Jai agree that it was a tough day before confessing their love for each other and hugging. Penny looks very small compared to Ken and Jake. And she is small in my opinion, but not just in the physical sense. Jake tells us that they're still two separate tribes, and that Sook Jai needs to figure out how to win future challenges in order to resume control of the vote. He says they'll have to fight for everything they get at this point. As opposed to lolling around and waiting for it to be handed to them along with the fruit and cheese and crackers and such. As Chuay Gahn hears them approaching, Ted proclaims, "Your questions shall be answered in a short second...survey says!" The tribe remains expressionless as Sook Jai reveals that Erin was voted off. Clay asks how she "took it," and Jake responds that they all took it hard; he doesn't want to return to Tribal Council. Penny thanks Chuay Gahn for waiting up and apologizes because they had to go through the process with them. Jake adds, "Thank you guys for mourning with us." Considering that at least one member of this tribe has thus far mourned a dead baby bat and the previous night's dinner, it's not saying much. Jake announces that he doesn't know if he's tired or depressed because of losing another person. In a typically self-serving statement, Penny again states her difficulty in voting Erin out. This time, she says it was hard because she lost her sleeping partner. Now she'll have to find another set of pillows, and I challenge her to find a tribemate so appropriately constructed as Erin.