Only 15 days have passed in this game so far, but apparently there's plenty to recap. Not because anything really interesting has happened, but because this show is afraid to put a new episode up during March Madness. We learn nothing new about the contestants who have already been kicked off, so I hope you weren't anticipating any Sandy scenes. We do learn that Sydney is more useful to her tribe than previously suspected, as she's actually able to start a fire where her male tribemates could not. Taj is less useful, because, although she interviews that she's all muscle and ready to kick challenge ass, mosquito bites reduce her to tears. It's pretty pathetic, but Stephen is there to give her supportive hugs, which is probably why she chose him to be her Exile alliancemate. Stephen continues to be awesome, calling Douche Steven Seagal (as does Tyson) and forming little-brother-type bonds with J.T. and Brendan. Over at Tempura, Douche is still a douche, ordering Sierra to build a fire and cook food by herself, conducting a non-existent orchestra, and telling stories about being attacked by snakes in the Amazon, thus proving that snakes are excellent judges of character. Tyson is self-consciously wacky as he flirts with Debbie and walks around camp naked. It's annoying and weird. Erinn remains Tempura's only saving grace, as she admits that she doesn't like anyone in her tribe and thinks that Douche is a big joke. And Joe remains boring and unremarkable. Let's hope the next 15 days are a lot more fun, with a lot less Douche.
Just in case you didn't get enough of a summary of the season so far from Probst's ten-minute-long previously on segments every week, we've got an entire episode recapping the first fifteen unexceptional days of this show. Probst tries to defend this choice by claiming that this season has some of the most memorable contestants yet, but this is not true. I don't even have to watch the rest of the season to know that. Then we get a recap montage of the season thus far because this show is obviously obsessed with recapping itself. One new thing we see here is Sydney saying that she's voting for Sandy because "she's crazy." That was funny. With Spencer's torch-snuff, we get a really stupid sunrise wipe, as a sun comes flying out of Spencer's freshly-extinguished torch. So many cheesy wipes this season! What's up with that? Did they hire a new editor who thinks this is a good idea? Do they think that cheesy wipes somehow make the most out of their new HD footage? I just don't get why they stopped doing Probst's live final show action adventure arrival montage but they'll air these wipes, which are so much lamer. At least the Probst montage was lame in an awesome way. Probst says we'll get a "deeper insight" into the game with never-before-seen scenes of some of our "favorite contestants." But ... I don't have any favorite contestants. What am I supposed to do?
The good news is, we get to see everyone in the opening credits again. I think it's lame that they get taken out after they're voted off. Unless Douche is voted out. Then I'm happy to see him go away forever.
Probst goes for the drama in his narration, as he explains that our contestants began the game "traveling on a dusty, endless road to nowhere." Yes, the road looks dusty. But I'm sure it ends somewhere, so this is a lie. We see our contestants sitting in the truck, but we still don't get to find out how they managed to be wearing clothes that were their new team's colors, which is the only question about the first fifteen days that I wanted answered. I'll just have to keep assuming that whoever thought up color-coding the contestant wardrobes is the same guy who advocated the cheesy wipes. Weird how he works in both pre- and post-production. We get to hear more about people's first impressions of each other. Not from Erinn, though, as she just states the obvious that sitting in a truck next to people allows one to make first impressions without elaborating on what said impressions might be. Meanwhile, Brendan doesn't want to make any first impressions if he can help it. Debbie finally comes up with a first impression: she doesn't like what she sees in Sierra's attitude. I don't know why; Sierra's attitude looks just awesome to me as she interviews that she was really hot and had a fever and "didn't give a flying fuck what they thought." This is a sound strategy because what people think on this show has little to no bearing on one's success in the game.