lundi 1 août 2011 | By: Patrick

Rewatch: Survivor: Borneo "The Generation Gap" (Episode 2)

Episode 2: "The Generation Gap"
Original Airdate: June 7th, 2000
American Ratings: 18.1 million viewers

Although this was only the second episode, ratings indicated that Survivor would undoubtedly be the hit of the summer. Racking up an additional 2.6 million viewers for the second chapter, Survivor was well on its way of becoming the TV phenomenon of 2000. Indeed, beginning with episode 3 the following week, the ratings would never dip below the 23-million viewers mark.

This episode's title is definitely apropos. Not only regarding B. B.'s clash with the younger generation of castaways he must learn to live with on Pagong beach, which is at the heart of this one. But on a wider scale, generation gaps are a reality that participants have been forced to deal with on every season of Survivor. And it underlies one of the golden rules of Survivor: If you cannot adapt, you'll be voted off. Simple as that.

Day 4

At Tagi beach, the food situation has become quite dire. The rice and what little fruit the tribe has left is nowhere near enough to satisfy their hunger. They are approaching starvation, yet none of the castaways appear quite hungry enough to eat the rats they have captured. Yet. . .

The raft is used for a fishing expedition, but all the fish traps proved to be empty.

Who doesn't want to own the B. B. action figure?

Back on the Pagong beach, B. B. takes on the leadership role once again, supervising the construction of the shelter. The patriarch managed to get basically everyone involved this time, which explains the tribe's progress regarding their living quarters. Yet though things are moving forward, few of B. B.'s teammates appreciate his over-the-top workaholic personality and the demanding pace he sets.

"Honestly, if we were to ever lose an immunity challenge, I think he'd probably be the first one voted off," confided Ramona, a thought obviously shared by several other Pagong members. But even though it's evident that he is putting his own head on the chopping block, B. B. continues plow ahead without regards for the feathers he's ruffling along the way.

Within the Tagi tribe, an unlikely cook has emerged. Chef Rudy prepares rice and papaya for his team.

Richard is aware that his being gay would likely be hard for Rudy to handle, so he leaves the former Navy Seal in the dark about that particular nugget of information. "If he knew I were gay, that would be, probably, very difficult for him," he claimed.

But when Sean outs him, the cat is out of the bag. Oddly enough, at least based on what we've seen on camera, Richard's homosexuality didn't prevent the two men from bonding rapidly and ultimately becoming strong allies. "For a homosexual, he's one of the nicest guys I've ever met," exclaimed Rudy. Ah, there just might be hope for the world yet. . . ;-)

I think they find me abrasive, authoritarian. There's probably a couple other adjectives you could throw in there that'd probably work too.

Alas, all is not peaches and cream at the Pagong camp. Ramona remains ill. Unable to eat without throwing up whatever she ingurgitated, she must rely solely on water. Already weak, her condition continues to wane.

B. B. continues to toil to get the shelter done to his specifications, all the while grumbling about Joel and Ramona, among others. A clash between the older man and the rest of his tribe appears inevitable at this point.

Day 5

Back at the Tagi beach, there is a budding friendship between Greg and Colleen developing, one that has not escaped the attention of the rest of the tribe. "Greg is great. It's just good to have a friend, you know," says Colleen. "She's really fun to play with," opines Greg. Still, you don't want your tribesmate getting ideas which could cost you your place in the game. . .

That night, in order to lighten up the mood and get people to discover a bit more about each other, Greg (wearing a weird headpiece à la Jamiroquai) hosts the All New Newly Stranded Survivor Game. Everyone is laughing and having a good time, forgetting the travails of the previous few days.

Day 6

You know, if the sky was blue and I said it was blue, he'd say it's red just to disagree. I can't let that bring me down anymore.

Unfortunately, the laughter of the night before is gone come morning at the Pagong beach. When B. B. refused to listen to Gretchen and imposed his own will as to where the shelter should be build, it appears that he didn't consider how the tide would factor into the equation. Hence, it seems that its position is now threatened to be washed away by the rising tide, and it's not even the full moon yet. The tribe has no choice but to carry logs to act as wave breakers, but they don't yet know if that will prove to be enough to save their shelter.

Pangs of hunger drive the Tagi members to strange measures. Sean utilizes his vast intellect to create his patented Super Pole, which took him 5 hours to build. He spends the rest of the day fishing, but as Sue predicted, rather acerbically, he came back empty-handed.

I've been working my ass off while a lot of you have been lying on your ass watching me. So don't give me any of that.

We can all agree that B. B. has been digging his own grave for a while now. But his washing his clothes with canteen water in the food kettle the rest of the tribe was about to cook in is the drop that spilled the glass. Even worse, all the canteens were empty and the falling rain will render the terrain too dangerous to navigate to go get more water.

That raised the ire of the entire Pagong tribe, and B. B. suddenly finds himself without the support of even his habitual ally, Gretchen. The easy-going Gervase has had enough and henceforth won't take any crap from the older man. It's agreed that they must all vote on everything they do, though B. B. refuses to go along with the decision.

Lose and face tribal council, where you must vote one member off the island.

There is no ambiguity pertaining to the message each tribe gets from tree mail. The castaways get the distinct impression that they'll have no choice but to eat disgusting food. "Sounds tasty," says Gervase, evidently concerned by the upcoming immunity challenge.

B. B. seems like he's good at starting fires, but he can't take the heat. Realizing that he is in a heap of troubles, the patriarch confides in Gretchen that they might consider throwing the challenge to "lighten the load." It's obvious the older man feels like quitting, but he nonetheless tries to find a way to save face.

The gross food challenge has become an enduring Survivor classic and this first one was a doozy. Jeff Probst reveals that they will sample a "local delicacy," yet nobody's fooled. When the bowl of beetle larva is unveiled, both tribes know that the game is on. "First person who refuses to eat a bug loses immunity for their tribe," explains the host. "Guys, bon appétit."

Surprisingly, almost all the castaways downed their beetle larva without a glitch. Facing Dirk, Gervase was issued a 5-second countdown to finish his bug by Jeff, otherwise he'd lose the challenge for the entire Pagong team. But Gervase overcomes his revulsion and rises up to the challenge, forcing a tie-breaker. Both tribes are asked to assign the person they feel is the most sqeamish player from the other team. The final showdown will be between Gervase and Stacey. Tagi wins immunity, and the victory appears to earn Stacey the respect of her peers.

With the threat of the soon-to-be-held council hanging over them, the mood is subdued at the Pagong beach. As they pack up their belongings, Colleen is crying. For his part, B. B. appears to have come to terms with his fate and seems ready to go home.

The younger Pagong members arrive face-painted at tribal council. Though no mention was made of it, I thought it was a nice little touch.

Jeff Probst appears more comfortable during this second tribal council. He projects more assurance as he walks the castaways through what is about to take place.

Compared to subsequent seasons, during which the council is used for posturing, manoeuvering, and strategic purposes, it's interesting to see just how subdued and frightened the castaways are during the first few tribal councils of that first season of Survivor. It's obvious that no one wants to be there, but they act as though they don't want to bring attention to themselves and just want this thing to be done with.

It's time for you to go.

Though Ramona is sick, continues to weaken, and is little more than deadweight, only two votes were cast against her. B. B. pays the price for the way he conducted himself, racking up the remaining six votes against him. Yet in getting rid of him, Pagong loses its hardest working member and a man who always gave everything he had. Three days before, the Tagi tribe strengthened themselves by eliminating their weakest link. Now, the Pagong tribe will have to make do without the only person who seemed to know a little about survival. . .

Stay tuned for more!

To purchase the Survivor: Borneo DVD boxset: Canada, USA, Europe.

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