Assuming that they will be joining different tribes soon, Malcolm and Denise frantically look for the Hidden Immunity Idol and finally find it. Malcolm keeps it.
When they arrive at the Reward Challenge, Malcolm is assigned to Tandang and Denise is assigned to Kalabaw. The Challenge involves one-on-one challenges where each contestant holds an idol on a platform in one hand and then tries to knock the other person's idol off with the other hand. The person whose idol hits the ground first loses. The first team to earn five points wins the reward. My husband immediately comes up with the strategy of throwing your own idol up in the air as high as possible and then using both hands to take the other idol down before yours hits the ground. No one tries it until the end, when Malcolm uses it to win reward for his team.
After the challenge, the various factions on Tandang are vying for Malcolm's affections. RC flirts with him while Pete reveals that he and Abi have the idol and they want to get rid of Skupin.
Similar things are happening with Denise over on Kalabaw. Dana is also not feeling well and ends up with a sharp pain in her stomach that causes her to flee the shelter, shaking and crying. Dawson and Penner comfort her until Probst arrives to take her for a checkup from the medics. Her problem seems very similar to what happened to Colton last season. The medics tell her that her situations isn't life-threatening, so they aren't required to pull her out – it's Dana's decision. Dana decides that she just can't be sick out there anymore, and she decides to leave. Look, I would have left in five seconds. Being sick is awful; being sick, and hungry, and cold, and wet, and among strangers would be the worst. But I liked Dana! Damn.
At the Challenge, Abi sits out for Tandang to even things up and Probst makes a point of noting that she's sat out of many challenges. In this one, the teams have to traverse an obstacle course and then untie knots to drop a drawbridge. Tandang takes a quick lead, mostly because Katie on Kalabaw looks like she's dying (which Probst makes sure to point out). Once the drawbridge is down, the teams have to chop a rope which will release bamboo pieces, only some of which have letters. The pieces with the letters need to be arranged in a phrase. Lisa and Pete have a big headstart for Tandang, with Penner and Dawson trying to solve the puzzle for Kalabaw. Both teams figure out the phrase but Tandang manages to get the pieces into the right slots just split seconds before Kalabaw and wins immunity.
The men of Kalabaw recruit Denise to their side, and with Dana out, have the majority. They decide to get rid of either Katie or Dawson, both of whom didn't perform well in the challenge. Jeff Kent is starting to figure out that Dawson knows who he is, which gives him added incentive to get rid of her. At Tribal Council, the tribe goes through the various reasons people might get voted out (attitude, alliances, challenge performance) and ultimately Dawson is voted out. I'm kind of shocked that she didn't out Jeff Kent on her way out, but she did take time to embrace Probst. She was stunned to be going home.
Matsing. Malcolm and Denise return from Tribal Council after voting out Russell. Malcolm interviews that he didn't think he'd be on a tribe of two until Day 39, and that they don't know what to expect next. As they settle in to sleep, Malcolm and Denise try to get warm and also speculate on the future. They figure each of them will go to one tribe, although there might also be a general tribal mix-up. Malcolm advises us not to count them out just yet. I won't, Malcolm! I like those two, although it could be because they've been shown in the episodes more than just about anyone else.
The next morning, Malcolm and Denise wake up soaking wet, shooing away mosquitoes. They agree that something needs to change or they're not going to make it much longer; they don't even have a tarp. Denise finds Tree Mail (remember Tree Mail? Is this its first appearance this season?) that invites them to a Reward Challenge today, which sort of implies that Matsing will be absorbed into the other two tribes, since they have only been doing one challenge as long as they've had three tribes.
Denise and Malcolm realize that they need to find the Idol, even though they don't have the clue. After scrambling around for a bit, they talk about what's always been there since obviously the clue was planted before they arrived at their camp. Denise notes that the rice was there when they arrived and they start digging through the rice while viewers at home curse on their couches and go, "NO! The lid! The lid to the thing!" Or maybe that's just me. Anyway, Denise tries looking under the rice basket and finally Malcolm takes the machete and pries off the Idol. He and Denise are giddy at having found it. Denise interviews that this is great if they go to the same tribe, but if they are split, Malcolm will be keeping the Idol and Denise is kind of screwed.
The three tribes report for the Reward Challenge. Probst asks Lisa a leading question about whether they are a decimated tribe or two people who have survived and then tells Malcolm and Denise to drop their buffs because Matsing is done. Probst tosses Malcolm a pouch and tells them to each pull out a buff to determine which person will go to which tribe. Malcolm is going to Tandang and Denise is going to Kalabaw. So that's that.
The Reward Challenge involves squaring off one-on-one against an opponent while holding a small platform with an idol on it in one hand. First one to knock the other's idol off wins a point and the first team to five points wins reward. The reward is coffee, tea, biscuits and cookies. It looks pretty yummy and I just ate lunch. If I were starving, I might cry.