The Merger

Episode Report Card
Joanna: B | 3 USERS: A+
Merger Day Massacre

At Tagi, Richard and Rudy inspect yet another ray which is, in Richard's words, "a good fatty" and "a lot of meat," images which could be used to describe both the manta ray and Richard. Richard tells us that he knows both parties agree on which camp to move to and so "[he] can't imagine what's goin' on in the sand spit," and it seemed like he knows about Jenna's Row of Shame, which is happening right about now.

Sean and Jenna arrive in a canoe at Pagong, where Jenna hugs Gretchen like they've been gone twenty-four months instead of twenty-four hours. Jenna starts ordering her team around: They have five minutes to pack, get their luxury items, and select three items to bring, which turn out to be the wool blanket, mosquito netting, and cooking pot. Jenna says she named the new tribe "Rattan" after the plentiful island wood and Idiot Seanvant proudly adds, "We just added an 'A' to make it sound a little more exotic. That was my idea, you know, give it a little flair, a little pizzazz." The ambassadors wisely start bragging in chorus about the feast they had. Jenna says "four bottles of wine," and in the background we hear Sean saying, "Four bottles of wine. Four bottles of wine," as if he's just beginning to believe it himself. Cranky Greg walks away from the group and then tells us, "You know, they come back having had a great night and 'Oh My God! I can't wait to tell you guys how much we've eaten.' And that's wonderful, that's how ambassadors should be treated. But you know, of course when you're on an island surviving on white rice and fish...." I think Greg's cocophone may need a recharge because this doesn't exactly seem like he's "in touch with the greater spirit." Idiot Seanvant then recites the morning's breakfast in a wide-eyed dunce manner, "Four croissants with orange marmalade and strawberry jam. Coffee. Four bottles!" You should see him count toothpicks. We then cut over to a very irritated Greg saying, "Hey! Tell me a little bit more about it. I'd love to hear about butter sauce. Thanks!" Colleen and Gervase both tell us they wanted to leave camp anyway. We then get sappy music and a newly sunburnt Gretchen in a totally different outfit than she's wearing in the move scene, and she's choking up and this seems very out of place. Like it was filmed, I don't know, maybe, after a Tribal Council or something. She tells us she first thought she would have been happier on Tagi's team, but adds, "I think it was good for me to be with this tribe because, um, you don't have to work all the time and you don't have to be busting butt. It's nice know, we're healthy and we're happy and we spend a lot of time having fun. So I think it taught me something, too. You can be very comfortable and I don't feel like I have to bust butt all the time and I've had a good time while I'm here so I'm glad, you know, I'm glad to go with the other tribe and I was glad to be with this tribe." To go along with this, we see lots of shots of Gretchen looking happy and bonding with the team. As Pagong sets out on their raft towards Tagi's beach, I wonder why they don't just walk. Greg says "it's like starting over" and they left "a lot of baggage" on that Pagong beach and he's not kidding; their shit is all over the place -- it's like the path to Everest only there are no sherpas to clean up after them. Greg, who does not even appear to be rowing, half-heartedly urges, "Come on left side. Come on left side."

Rich smugly tells us that Pagong is moving in and that he "was glad to see that." Tagi helps Pagong unpack and Richard hugs Sean and says, "Handsome" as he sticks the knife in his back. Rich gives Greg a tour and imperiously points out "house. Living room. Kitchen. Bathroom." In a confessional, Greg says, "A boy named Sue. Strong. Loud. With an accent that'll drive you up the wall," and then he does more of Fran Drescher than a Frances McDormand, but we get his point. Jenna tells us that Rudy is set in his ways and then Talking Rudy Doll spurts out, "All of a sudden we doubled our population. The house got smaller. The pots got smaller. And, uh, personally it's a pain in the ass." Kelly tells us it's almost too good: "Everyone's being real real super-polite," and I guess she considers singing back-up in Richard and the Doo Wops an exercise in good manners. Colleen tells us that Sean is very intelligent and that "he's always going." We then randomly see Sean complaining to Colleen about "unambitious, good-looking guys who have absolutely no personality that still get a lot of girls," so I'm guessing he thinks he falls into the category of ambitious, bad-looking men who get no girls? Rudy has his head in his hands as he listens to this babble. Greg tells us, "Rich is clever and, uh, I mean we'll start being honest now. I think Rich thinks he's very clever. He is relatively sharp and, uh, he has a lot of things going on in his mind that he, uh, selectively decides, uh, what he will share and with whom. Rich is playing a big game, which is very fun, so he's awfully entertaining," and I love it when the castaways pretend they're outside psychological observers instead of willing participants in this mess. As the women join together to "beef up" the shelter's supports, Kelly says, "Bam! Shingles break. The whole room comes crashing down. Felt like such an idiot." Sue says, "Yeah! It's the same as it is back home, ladies, here in the jungle. The women are doing all the work and the guys are just hangin' out and B.S.-ing ya." Gervase teaches a card game to Richard, who lounges like he's a Roman emperor expecting Gervase to start dropping grapes into his mouth. There's some weird flirty exchange in which they mutually eye a conch of some sort and Rich says, "Isn't that beautiful. Don't lie. It looks like mucous, doesn't it?" Colleen tells us that men and women relate differently: Women compete while men can "sit down and talk for hours and walk away friends." Debatability of this statement aside, had Gervase made this comment last week, Joel would have just been crucified for it. Richard tells us that, "Gervase was great. I beat the hell out of him in a number of games that I've never played before. And he's, uh, he's good at cards. I think he could have been letting me win. Who knows? He could be playing the odds too." Gervase the Almighty Horn-Tooter tells us he's a "charmer" and a "smooth talker" and we then cut to a scene where he says, "Lookin' real good, Richard, really good." Richard says, "Can you tell I'm losin?" and looks down at his rolls. When Gervase agrees, he says, "Makes me happy. 'Cause I can't tell." Greg then shows up at camp with a sea urchin, which makes Rich happy because they're "great for bait but the insides is [sic ] just nothing but guts." With Richard, the outsides are nothing but gut. He then tells us that Greg's failure makes Richard stronger and that Greg is "pretty cocky," and, well, isn't that just the pot calling the kettle cocky.

Around the Rattana campfire, Jenna mumbles something like, "Less than one hundred feet away and I've got this girl laid out and like across the back seat and something something and it was like incredible." Idiot Seanvant is frothing at the mouth so I think it's sex talk. Kelly is really happy to find out that Gretchen nearly killed herself when she was fourteen by drinking a fifth of whiskey in two minutes. Greg manically tells us it's like a banquet and maybe they're smoking that rattan instead of building furniture with it. Sean tells the group that he left a two-on-one opportunity because he was "scared out of [his] mind." As Talking Rudy Doll stomps off, pull the string and he says, "Blah! Some of the stuff they talk about don't interest me and I don't wanna hear it. I dunno. They talk about a lot of sex stuff." Inside the rained-in tent while the new tribe sleeps, Talking Rudy Doll mumbles, "Everybody's hands all over me," and Gretchen says, "Damn, Rudy!" and then it's morning. Gretchen is frustrated because it rained and they just came from a decent shelter and now they're in a new place. As he scratches his back with the knife, Talking Rudy Doll says, "I was in there last night and, uh, when the rain came all them women seized down my way and I had about five women in my lap all of a sudden." Colleen and Jenna both say they got kicked in the head by Talking Rudy Doll. Gretchen tells us that Talking Rudy Doll said, "Well, this is my space," when she told him he kicked her in the head. Talking Rudy Doll keeps on coming with the zingers: "Hey! I'm the old guy,

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