The teams get to the starting lines and wait. Survivors ready...go! It's basically a draw through the mud crawl, although the women have to drag Scout out at the end, which I think is probably in part because of her knee, which may not bend sideways in quite that way. The teams operate the box maze, and the men finish it first. They move on to the balance beam. Chad falls off, as Jeff encourages the women to keep working, because they might catch up. Travis (whom Jeff is calling "Bubba," like, thanks, Jeff, I'm not confused enough yet) falls off. One of the Johns (K, I think) crosses successfully, just as the women finish the maze. Brady crosses. Travis crawls for it on his belly, scraping himself along the beam. Ow. Some of the women are doing the same. In fact, most of them are. Leann is across. Travis is across. Chad is across. Lea is across, Dolly is across, Mia is across, Rory is across. It eventually comes down to Scout and Chris. She digs, crawling across and grimacing, and Chris does likewise. Chris is really, really almost there when he tips to the side and rolls off, landing in the net. The men curse him under their breath as Scout continues to crawl. She apparently loses her top as she gets to the end, because she's all blurred as she rolls into the net. Wow, who knew the first pixelized chest would be hers? The women pull her to the mat so that they can start their fire, as Chris tries to run across to make up the time he lost. He falls off. The women start to build their fire. Chris falls off. The women build the fire. Chris falls off. The fire catches. Chris falls off. The fire burns. Chris falls off. The rope catches fire. The rope snaps. Chris falls off. The women grab the torch and run to the mat. The women win the first challenge. They try to get a chant up, but they're really not very impressive. They definitely need to work on their hooting and hollering. Jeff gives the women their flint, congratulates them, and sends them off. He tells the men that they'll have to show up this evening for tribal council. The women celebrate.
Volcano! At Lopevi, the post-mortem conversation with all the men frolicking out in the water is not a happy one. John P. says that he thinks they may have underestimated the women. Brady chuckles in an interview that losing fire was very painful. And then he adds, "Losing to women was tough." Man. Are guys really that sensitive about losing to women? I mean, guys who weren't born in 1850? For God's sake. Don't they watch the Olympics, or the WNBA, or...you know, women at the gym? Anything? Anything? Out in the water, Chris says, "To tell you guys a little more about myself, I'm not real good at a balance beam." Ha. They all laugh. I think that was probably his best option, all things considered, because he is more than conspicuous right now; he is undoubtedly marked for booting. And they know it, and he knows it, and for him to acknowledge it and have a sense of humor about it is not only strategically smart, it's sort of a kindness, in that it drops the tension level somewhat. Chris then interviews, less amusingly, that he could have made it across if he'd had wings. I think I'm going to spend this entire season trying to figure out what his point is. He claims that in the game, you "outwit, outplay, outlast," and you don't "outbalance." Actually, I think that's under "outplay" in a sense, Chris, so don't get into the semantics too viciously.