While The Cats Are Away

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Joanna: C+ | Grade It Now!
When an Elephant Walks By With an Itty Bitty Waist and a Round Thing in Clay's Face...

In the belly-crawl leg, Ted may be strong but Clay's the weasel -- he's used to functioning close by the ground. Actually, they're all kind of weaselly, so for once, it's a challenge that makes use of their skills. You'd think Penny's smallness would give her an advantage, but she finishes last, behind Clay, Ted, and Brian, respectively. Yay! Watching Penny lose is fun.

According to Peachy, the third leg of the challenge is both "physical" (getting over the wall) and "political" (using the aid of another tribe member). Brian reaches the wall first and immediately squats to give Clay a lift. It doesn't look all that clear to me that this was intended for Clay as much as for whoever managed to jump on first. Still, Brian had reason enough for picking Clay based on size alone. After all, I wouldn't want Big Ted stomping on my hand. Ted joins in shoving Clay's ass over the wall as Peachy points out that they're both making plays for Clay's support in return. Now Clay reaches back over the wall to pull either Brian or Ted over. He reaches for Brian, but Ted grabs at him as well. Clay hangs over the wall and Brian clings to one arm while Ted clings to the other. Peachy points out that both men are now making a play for Clay's support, and narrates back and forth, "He's takin' Brian. He's takin' Ted. Ted's tryin' to make him use 'im!" Neither man will let go, and just as it looks like Clay will actually be able to make use of his sleeveless shirt, Peachy tells him he has to choose someone. Clay manages to shake off Ted, and successfully pulls Brian over the wall. Ted walks away mumbling that he could have done it by himself.

Peachy attempts to incite the other players by pointing out that Clay and Brian began the game as partners and supported each other throughout the challenge. Now, however, they'll compete against each other in the final leg. As with the "Blown Bridge," a fall midway through the balance beam course requires that the competitor start over. Clay spazzes his way across the boards, while Brian takes a more methodical approach. And although Clay is much faster, he falls and has to begin again. As Brian plods along, we see Clay scurrying in the background to catch up. And though Clay's manic scrambling is a noble effort, Brian -- with Ted's "suck it up, baby" encouragement -- is just one leg away from the victory. He takes a slow, pronounced final step and claims the victory, although he doesn't look particularly happy about it. Peachy congratulates his nice recovery but points out that Clay is still in it. Peachy congratulates him: "Here you go, baby," and announces, "Your own VISA card!" Brian examines the card -- in his line of work, he's seen his fair share of fake plastic -- and then gives the thumbs up. Peachy next reveals that that he can bring along a "partner to share this experience with." With this announcement, the other members of Chuay Gahn rise from the losers' bench and present themselves in a line before Brian. For no good reason, Penny looks like she thinks she's as good as picked, but instead Brian shmoozes that he "probably couldn't have accomplished this feat without the assistance of someone," and calls out Clay, saying he thinks Clay deserves half the win. Brian says, "I appreciate it," as Clay comes over for his requisite hug. Peachy dismisses them back to camp with the news that they'll be picked up first thing in the morning.

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