The teams proceed to the spot for the reward challenge, and as they step onto their mats, there's some kind of strange rattlesnake sound. I find the use of poisonous animal noises a particularly cheap device for creating tension. If you're going to go for visceral terror, you could just use a siren, or a hypothetical recording of Bush's November 2, 2004, 11:38 PM acceptance speech. ("In my second term, I will introduce the Dangerous Groceries Control Act, with which the FBI will have the ability to connect to every bar code scanner in the country. In connection with our new biometric surveillance program, this will allow us to monitor the large and unusual purchases of organic produce, chai tea, and granola cereals that often accompany subversive activities.") Jeff asks for an update about how things are going back at camp. Scout reports that things are much more peaceful recently. She chooses not to say, "since Mia took her waggling head off to Loserville." But you can almost see Twila's twangy little heart mutter, "I heard that." When Scout is asked how life could be even better for Yasur, Scout refrains from saying what she is probably thinking, which is, "Can you do anything about Eliza?" Instead, she focuses on the fact that they don't know as much as they wish they did about finding food. Jeff asks Lopevi the same question. Brady steps up and tries not-so-subtly to remind the guys that he's been out there trying to catch fish for them. I'm sure they appreciate it. I'm sure that they've appreciated it both times that they've had a bite of fish as a result of his valiant efforts.
Jeff explains the reward challenge. There are thirty items on little tables with covers over them, and they make up fifteen pairs. It is, as the clue suggested, essentially a big game of Concentration. The teams will alternate sending someone to uncover two items at a time. The first team to match five pairs will win the challenge. Now, Jeff asks if they'd like to know what they're playing for. They all say they would, and Jeff turns and calls into the woods. To the sound of the kind of frantic drums that, on television, can only mean pornography or the arrival of natives, a man emerges from the woodsy brush. He is wearing some sort of a grass skirt, and Jeff introduces him as Da. Or Dah. Or something. Jeff might have made it up because the contestants aren't smart enough to pronounce his real name. Jeff explains that Da will be spending twenty-four hours with whichever team wins the challenge. During that time, the castaways will have the opportunity to take advantage of his "rock star" qualities when it comes to surviving in Vanuatu. Jeff warns the teams that Da doesn't speak a whole lot of English, which should make him feel right at home with people like Travis and Twila. Jeff claims that Da can explain how to improve their shelter, cook their food, and remove grass stains without damaging the color of the garment. Okay, not the last one. But as a general matter, he's there to make things easier for the inept, which, coincidentally, is exactly what these people need. Jeff points out that as a matter of fact, they're all pretty much wussies, because they've only been here for nine days, and they have thirty to go. I think the most educational thing about Survivor this season is that it teaches you that if Lost ever really happened, the people on it would quickly become much uglier than Matthew Fox.