Tonight’s premiere episode of Survivor: Blood vs.Water started out with the returning players and their loved ones making their way over to the island. They introduced Gervase and his niece, Marissa; Kat and her boyfriend and former Big Brother winner, Hayden; Laura and her daughter, Ciera; Rupert and his wife, Laura; Colton and his fiancé, Caleb; Candice and her husband, John; Monica and her husband, Brad; Tina and her daughter, Katie; Tyson and his girlfriend, Rachel; and Aras and his brother, Vytas. The group spent one night alone on the island with their loved ones to get acclimated with their surroundings.
In the morning, everyone met Jeff on the beach, and he told them they would not be playing with their loved one – they would be playing against them. He then divided the returning players from the new players, and everyone said their good-byes. Jeff tossed buffs to each tribe and told the returning players they were called Galang, while the new players were called Tadhana. He shocked everyone by handing out parchment and instructing them to vote someone out right away. All of the new players voted Rupert’s wife, Laura B., out, and the returning players voted Candice out. Jeff told Laura and Candice they were not out of the game, because Redemption Island was once again in play this season. In another twist, Jeff offered Rupert a trade with his wife to switch places and put her on his tribe so he could go to Redemption Island, which he did. John and Candice discussed the same proposition, and they decided to keep things the same.
Galang made their way back to camp, and Laura B. immediately struggled to chop a coconut. The group built their shelter and started boiling water. Monica was disappointed to play Survivor with Colton for the second time. She told him she wanted them to bury what happened to them last time, and she asked if he would stab her in the back again. He agreed things would be different and told her they should talk later.
Over at Tadhana, Brad took charge building a shelter with the rest of the guys. He gathered his tribe and told them if he didn’t give 100% during a challenge, they could vote him out, trying to cover up what he said earlier about not doing as well to help his wife. Brad also took Monica’s advice to “hit the ground running” and suggested an alliance of all five guys to the other men. (Caleb agreed, but he told the camera he was just agreeing to get him to shut up). As Brad tried to get a fire going, Ciera revealed that she was 16 when she got pregnant the first time, but she is now married and has a second child with her husband. Vytas revealed he was a heroin addict as a teenager and spent a year in jail.
Colton tried to turn over a new leaf and told his tribe what he had been through being gay, but he started sobbing in the meantime and said he just wanted to see Caleb.
At Redemption Island, Candice angrily chopped a coconut with a new hack for every person that voted her out. Rupert lounged around as Candice worked hard around camp. Candice was frustrated, but Rupert wanted to save his energy to beat her and get back into the game.
Both tribes received tree mail in the morning regarding their very first Immunity Challenge, which they quickly headed off to. Each tribe had to send six members out into the water to get over various obstacles before making their way out to untie a series of knots and release their boat. Gervase struggled terribly the entire time, and Tadhana took the lead. Once they paddled their boat back to shore, the remaining three players had to build a puzzle to create a ship’s wheel and use that to spin and raise their flag. Galang came from behind and took the lead during the puzzle portion and came back to win Immunity and flint.
Tadhana was discouraged as they got back to camp, and Brad tried to cheer the others up. Katie was nervous after not doing well with the puzzle. Marissa was frustrated Gervase had celebrated so much after his tribe won. Away from the tribe, Brad commented that he wanted to vote Marissa out just to stick it to Gervase, and John wondered if Katie would be a better idea to vote out. Vytas went to Rachel and said the guys might vote out Marissa, and he went to Marissa and told her they might vote out one of the puzzle builders.
Next, it was time for the first Tribal Council. Jeff asked Hayden the hardest part, and he said trying to create fire. Ciera said hearing the stories from her mom was completely different than experiencing it. Brad also admitted not having fire was the most difficult. Caleb said having loved ones there was hard, since neither knew what was going on. Jeff asked John about Candice being voted out first, and he said he had a lot of guilt about letting her go. He was in tears worrying what she was thinking. Brad wondered why the returning players celebrated so much earlier when one of their loved ones would go home. Vytas said that normally, the other tribe wouldn’t worry about who was going home, but in this case, they would. Marissa thought she was guilty by association, but she should be judged on what she did, not her uncle. Katie worried she could be voted off for her poor performance during the challenge and said she wouldn’t be surprised. Jeff read the votes – one vote was for Katie, and the rest were for Marissa. Before she left, she cast a long, angry look at her tribe.
What did you think of tonight’s premiere? Do you have any favorites so far? Leave a comment below!