The ants might go marching in ones, twos, and threes, but for the remaing 12 campers, the fun child’s song means a grueling and difficult challenge. I’m TDFanatic52 and we will talk about Basic Straining. This is a great episode as we have to deal with the challenges as well as a shocking campfire ceremony. We have big plays that were made by Duncan and Harold, the latter will be combined with the campfire ceremony. Let’s get started.

We are going to start off with something basic- the challenge. The first part is basically holding a canoe over a team’s head and a new day will begin once somebody quits. The challenge goes on well after sundown. The campers missed their lunch up until Lindsay quits. I have to say that the canoes must be that heavy if one person out of a team of 6 drops out. You have Owen who basically carried one a few episodes back, so there must have been extra weight when Lindsay quits.

The next part of the challenge is dancing to a Thriller parody. The rules are a bit unclear on how this one is supposed to work out, but it was interrupted by Duncan. And can somebody please explain why Lindsay, who got eliminated from this challenge, is dancing? I know that she wants to compete, but she is out of the challenge. She shouldn’t even be there!

After that is to write a 300-word essay on how each contestant loves Chef Hatchet. DJ and Trent failed to complete thus eliminating themselves from the game.

At 5 AM, it was an obstacle course. The rule is simple: everyone must be allowed to run it within a minute. From what Courtney said later in the episode, that didn’t happen as LeShawna got stuck in the mud, Heather got tied up in the rope swing, and Owen broke the wall and got stuck in a tire.

The last challenge is to hang upside down from the tree. Courtney, Duncan, and Geoff hung on for the Bass while Heather, Gwen, and Owen hung on for the Gophers. Duncan fell off after getting unconscious. Heather fell off after Owen farted and Owen fell on her after he failed to grab on to the tree branch. Courtney’s laughing caused her to fall as it was all up to Geoff and Gwen to win it for their team. After Geoff got dizzy, he fell, giving the Gophers another win.

Boring stuff aside, let’s talk about several plays. First off, Duncan.

Throughout this episode, Duncan has been messing with the minds of Chef, Harold (with Geoff’s help), and, to an extent, Courtney. Let’s start off Duncan’s mess list with Harold.

At the beginning of this episode, Duncan made s’mores out of Harold’s underpants. At the canoe part of the challenge, Geoff hooked on to Harold’s underpants with a fishing rod and gave Harold a wedgie. While eating, Duncan gave Harold a cup of kitchen grease. Duncan did have concerns as Harold was puking up mud at the obstacle course, however that didn’t prevent him from putting peanut butter on Harold’s bunk.

The main target of Duncan had been Chef. He paused the music during the dance lessons, to which Chef gave Duncan pushups as punishments. Things get heated when Duncan kissed Chef during the obstacle course after Duncan said to Leshawna: “Fallen soldier, I salute you!” To which Chef made Duncan spend one night in the boat house alone. Duncan took revenge as he and Courtney snuck into the production camp, stole some deserts, and left a fish for Chef to find.

In a flirtatious way, Duncan also with with Courtney. Throughout the season, Courtney had tried to hide her feelings for Duncan, and in this episode, the game of hide and seek was over. Duncan’s attitude seemed to have gotten to Courtney as she told Chef to “take a chill pill.” Not only that, but she also helped Duncan gather deserts for the campers and left a fish for Chef. The couple was officially formed when Duncan and Courntey finally kiss, but with Harold watching.

Speaking of Harold, we can say that he did fairly decent. He was the only one not to be yelled or harassed in any way by Chef after he got eliminated. That is because Harold was puking mud. There seems to be nothing interesting to go with on the Gopher’s side, so let’s go to the campfire ceremony.

Thanks to Geoff, the Bass lost. And in a shocking turn of events, Courtney got eliminated. Harold made a big play by switching the votes to go against Courtney. There would be at least 4 votes against Harold had he not done that, 5 if Bridgette also voted for Harold. In fact, Bridgette’s vote was undetermined in this episode as DJ, Duncan, and Geoff most likely voted for Harold, Courtney assumingly voted for Harold, and Harold voted for Courtney. Bridgette, being friends with Courtney, could’ve voted for Harold to keep her friend in the game, although she didn’t care that Courtney was leaving when she didn’t get a marshmallow.

Let’s talk about Harold’s tampering. It took guts to do that. It left a shock on the other Bass male’s faces knowing that one of their own got eliminated. So why Courtney? I forgot who said it, but one of the users said that Harold went with Courtney to make Duncan suffer. That I can agree with, since Harold did see Duncan and Courtney smooching on the Bass’s porch. However, I got my own theory. If Duncan got eliminated, Courtney will go all out to see who voted for Duncan. To prevent getting a bigger target on himself, Harold went and got rid of Courtney to separate the Bass couple.

Was this a good play for Harold? The line is blurred. It is a strong move to make. However, it can also be seen as Harold being a meat shield. For if Courtney stayed in and the Bass lost the next challenge, who will go? Bridgette or DJ. So in a way, Harold saved both Bridgette and DJ from elimination. However, if I had to pick one, I would have to say DJ.

Why do I think Bridgette and DJ will be eliminated in the next episode if Harold got eliminated in this one, more specifically DJ? Simple. Duncan has a strong alliance with Geoff and a relationship with Courtney. Since Geoff is in a relationship with Bridgette, it is safe to say that DJ will go home next.

Even with the fact that Courtney got eliminated, Duncan still has the numbers as he is aligned with DJ and Geoff.

Now that I think of it, Harold also did save one person from being eliminated in the next episode. That person was, shockingly, Duncan. If you think about it, Duncan did lose badly in the final challenge, along with Harold. So if Harold had not switch the votes and the Bass lost, Duncan, along with DJ and Bridgette, are potential for elimination.

Now what will happen if the Gophers lost? Since most of the eliminations has been old-school (ie, lose the challenge and you are going home), it is either between Gwen and Lindsay. Gwen for being the last Gopher standing and losing to the Bass. Lindsay for being the first one to give up in the challenge. (Note: Technically, the Gophers lost that challenge strictly because Chef did not catch Harold or Geoff with their hands off the canoe.)

Anyways, comment on what you think of this episode and I will see you all next time.

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