Oh Cole, we will miss your inability to keep yourself from eating. The latest Healer to go down was a +1 for me last week, bringing my total up to +16 for the season. Despite doing pretty well with my rankings, I have yet to correctly call who was going home during the week, it’s always the penultimate person going out instead. Mostly because Joe keeps cockroaching his way out of danger.

Next week is a double episode. That means that I will have to rank based on two votes, knowing only how the dynamics stand for one of them. Hopefully that second boot doesn’t come completely out of nowhere and sabotage what has been a fairly respectable performance from me so far this season.

The king once again stays king. In an episode largely devoid of good gameplay, Devon had a strong episode. He learned of Ryan’s idol from the man himself, and then from Ben. He didn’t let on to Ben that he already knew about the idol. Everybody wants to work with Devon. He’s in a great spot if he can manage this alliance breakup that is inevitably looming.

If Devon is king, Lauren is queen. She has been mostly on the down-low, minding her own business and getting advantages. This week, she even beat Cole in a physically demanding challenge. Those softball legs didn’t go to waste this time around.

Like Joe, I doubt Ashley’s ability to win the game but she’s also in no danger of going home just yet.

Sort of a rough episode for Ryan. He overshared his idol to Ben and it got back to Devon. Now his closest ally feels slighted by Ryan and we don’t know how that will go down. We also haven’t see much of the Chrissy and Ryan dynamic these last couple of episodes, that gives me a bit of pause.

Fairly good episode for Chrissy. She stayed out of the limelight, relative to the last few boots. She told Ben he was being kind of a dictator but eventually ceded her needs for his. It’s good to see her compromise and it allows her to keep a running tally of things Ben might owe her down the line.

Really not a good look for Ben this week. He came off as pushy and unable to listen to different opinions. I understand why he wants to keep Joe over people like Cole and Desi but if his alliance so badly wants Joe out, sometimes you have to give and take. Either way, he’s seen as the head of the alliance and some people are starting to dislike that. Being the visible leader this early can be difficult unless your name is Tom Westman.

Whatever happened to the Ashley and J.P. duo? Is J.P. still even around? What does “things like that” consist of? These are all questions that will probably never be answered.

In reality, Joe had a fairly good episode, even if it was mostly not of his doing. His strategy to be a dick to people made Ben continue to want him around. Mike’s tribal council took most of the heat off Joe. Now there’s an idol likely to be re-hidden at camp and we all know Joe loves his idol hunting. You never know.

At tribal council, Mike bombed harder than an amateur comedian on open mic night. Now he’s dug himself a fairly deep grave, much like a Rupert shelter on a beach, and he doesn’t have a lot of ways to get out of it. Sometimes, being bombastic for the sake of it doesn’t get you anywhere.

No big movers or shakers this week but I will give props to Joe for going up two spots. Sure, one of them was by default from somebody being eliminated but it’s the first time in multiple weeks that Joe isn’t in the cellar. That counts for something.

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