Immunity challenge. James is sent back to Zhan Hu for the challenge, and Jeff takes back immunity from Todd. You wanted it, you waited for it, and now it's here: gross food. Or, as Jeff says it, "traditional Chinese dishes." You'll recall that Courtney, Amanda, and Denise all sat out last time, so they can't sit out this time. I hope the toilet paper was enjoyable, because that's where they put the challenge muscle this week. So those three women all have to play, which means only one other person gets to play, and that person is Frosti, who I will say...has a hell of a tongue.
Frosti and Peih-Gee versus chicken hearts. Ten each. It's quite close, but Frosti edges her out, and Fei Long is up one to nothing. Jaime and Courtney versus eel. For a girl who seriously looks like she's going to throw up the entire time, Courtney puts up a good fight. Jaime also looks like she might throw up, which Denise loudly encourages (using her lunch-lady skills, undoubtedly, to induce vomiting), but Jaime pulls through, so now it's tied. And Courtney opens her mouth wide and expels a giant wad of chewed-up eel, and that is a truly gross display. Next, Erik and Amanda versus some shell-on baby turtles. As others have noted, though, the baby turtles aren't nearly as big in reality as they look when they're on the plate. They're sort of small canapés. This one is also close, but it's ultimately Erik who takes it, putting Zhan Hu up by a score of 2-1.
Next up are Denise and James, who both want the same thing -- for Denise to take this round. Zhan Hu is ahead, and that's not the way this is supposed to go. But this time around, they are facing...balut! Our old friend the chicken fetus. With feathers. When the start bell goes, Denise really, really tries. And James really, really tries to fake trying. But she…can't…eat…the…chicken…fetuses. She can't choke down the feathers. The minutes stretch out, and James's teammates, confused, encourage him to do something -- take tiny bites or something, because she clearly cannot do it. Ultimately, when Jeff starts to ask if Denise is going to just give up, she looks at James -- her one friend, whose one friend she is -- somewhat pleadingly. He finally "gives up" on giving up and eats his balut. So now, Zhan Hu is up 3-1. It's interesting to ponder what motivated James there. Friendship toward Denise and a desire not to force her into folding? A realization that it really didn't make any sense for him to throw the challenge instead of just keeping the idol? A double-cross of Todd? Not sure.