When Survivor Nicaragua episode 1 began, the castaways arrived on the beach, divided into random groups that they believed would be their tribes. When Jeff asked about first impressions, Yve was the first to speak. She believed that other people were already checking out the other Survivors and making first impressions. The groups that they had been divided into were not their tribes.
There was a Medallion of Power hidden somewhere in the Lagoon. Jeff announced the presence of the medallion and told all the Survivors to go look for it. Whoever found the medallion would find it for his or her tribe. The search was on. Brenda discovered the medallion of power up in a tree. Jeff asked Marty, an older man assigned to Brenda’s group, asked what he thought of her getting the Medallion of Power. He thought that it was great that she was able to get it for their tribe. Wrong. Jeff announced that the groups were not the tribes that they would be divided into. He then divided the groups into people over age 40 (Espada), and people 30 and younger (La Flor). There are no castaways between the ages of 31 and 39.
Jeff gave Brenda a choice. They could choose to keep the Medallion of Power or trade it away for some fishing gear and flint to make a fire with. The medallion would give an undisclosed kind of power later on in the game. As an added twist, what they did not choose to keep, the other tribe would get. They gathered in a huddle to decide what to keep and what to give away, and decided to keep the fish and give away the power.
“There’s no reason why we should lose to them,” Shannon from the younger team announced in an interview. He figured that the older tribe needed the power. That’s what the men assumed during the first episode of Survivor Amazon, when the tribes were divided between genders. The challenges were less physically demanding; I suspect that the same thing will happen here.
Jimmy Johnson figured that there would be an advantage to being a famous person, but some people might resent it (if they were fans of other teams). He didn’t bring up the fact that people might vote him out because he was rich.
At Espada, Jane used her glasses to start the fire. This was first done in Survivor Africa. They had the fire within a half hour. While the fishing equipment would have been useful, at least they didn’t need the flint.
Jud didn’t make a very good first impression with the rest of La Flor. People didn’t think that he was the sharpest pencil in the box. They started calling him Fabio. He didn’t mind that people thought that he was dumber than a box of rocks; he still thought that he was going to win.
La Flor discovered that Kelly B. only had one leg. Some of her tribemates figured that because of her leg, she would be a liability in challenges, and figured that they would probably end up voting her out first. When she was exploring with Alina, they found a clue to a hidden immunity idol. The clue was difficult to decipher. Alina was a little upset that they found the idol together, because she felt like it forced her to be in an alliance with her. Alina didn’t want to take Kelly B. to the end, fearing that people might give her a sympathy vote.
Jimmy Johnson must have overworked himself. In the evening, he started throwing up, then went to rest in the tent. The next morning, he complained about not getting any sleep, being cold, and being bothered by mosquitoes. He told the cameraman in an interview that he had watched every single Survivor episode, yet never expected it to be so difficult (isn’t that what they always say?).
Before the challenge, Jimmy Johnson called a “team huddle”. He announced that he came out for the adventure, not to win. He figured that he probably wouldn’t win because he was already a millionaire, but that he wanted to help his teammates get far. While he seemed sincere, I’m not sure if everyone is going to be thrilled with his style of leadership.
When the younger team came in to the immunity challenge, they came in with a song and a dance. It seemed a little silly, but it looked like they were having fun.
For the immunity challenge, one of the tribemates had to stand at the top of a tower with a bucket and some water. Five of the other tribemates would line up and hold what looked like rain gutters in such a way that the water would flow down the gutters. The water would lower a bucket; when the bucket lowered, puzzle pieces would be released. The final four tribemates would solve the puzzle for the win.
For this challenge, the Medallion of Power would allow the tribemates to start out with one extra bucket of water. Once the medallion was used, it would go to the other tribe. Espada decided that they would not give away the medallion this time around. They didn’t think that the challenge required any sort of strength that would give the younger castaways an advantage, and they wanted to send them a message that they didn’t need it.
When the challenge began, La Flor started out with a small lead, but the older tribe was doing pretty well too. The younger tribe was the first tribe to release the puzzle pieces, followed quickly by Espada. La Flor was ahead, but something was wrong with their puzzle and they had to backtrack a little. Although this gave Espada a little extra time, La Flor figured out what they did wrong and ended up winning the first challenge.
Jimmy Johnson and Holly took a walk on the beach to discuss strategy; he thought that he and Wendy were the two weakest players. Holly regretted making an alliance with Wendy earlier on in the game. She was conflicted about whether to break her alliance or not.
At tribal council, all of the members of Espada dipped their torch into the flame and got fire. Teammates mentioned how impressed they were by Jane’s ability to make fire; before going to Survivor, she had practiced making fire for two months.
They discussed whether Jimmy Johnson’s fame was a help or a liability. Jimmy T. didn’t buy Jimmy Johnson’s act where he was just here for the adventure and didn’t expect to win. When Jeff polled the group, he asked the tribe if they thought that they were vulnerable. More than half of the tribe raised their hands. When Jeff asked Wendy why she thought that she was vulnerable, she talked a lot. When he said that it was time to vote, Wendy started talking again about why she shouldn’t be voted out.
Wendy’s sudden bout of talkativeness proved to be her undoing. The tribe voted nearly unanimously to get rid of her: only one person voted for Yve (Wendy, who can’t vote for herself). Rule #1 of Survivor: don’t talk too much.