Brandon Hantz, of the Favorites tribe of returning players, swung between wanting to tear apart his camp to being penitent and apologizing for his actions. And it was an emotional drain on the tribe, too.
On one of his emotional swings, including a tiff that exploded with 54-year-old Phillip Sheppard, 21-year-old Hantz dumped out the camp’s rice and beans — their main food staples. On Twitter, Meehan tweeted that they just picked up the rice as best as they could.
“Just give yourself some time to breath,” Meehan told Hantz in an effort to help calm him down after his blow-up.
“I am the author of my fate, buddy,” Hantz yelled on the beach with his arms outstretched.
“Brandon is ready to fistfight. He is literally out of his mind,” said Meehan, South Jordan adoptive mother of six, BYU English professor and Primary teacher in the Founders Park 8th Ward, South Jordan Utah Founders Park Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. “There is so much to consider when something like that happens. We’re trying to consider if he’s even in a place where we can play with him. Or forfeit the challenge? Give immunity away? Which you never do in this game.”
The Favorites won the Reward Challenge on Day 11 but decided to forfeit the immunity challenge on Day 13 to go to Tribal Council. So, instead of going forward with the challenge, host Jeff Probst took Hantz aside from his tribe as they discussed the issue. But civil discussion was difficult as Hantz vented loudly and was at times vulgar. Many of the rest of the tribe were also emotional. The tribe of Fans was surprised at the outbursts.
“I had a really hard time” after the first time he played “Survivor,” Hantz said during one of many tirades and one of the few things aired where cursing didn’t have to be bleeped out. “I would never be the guy to get walked episode by episode.”
Meehan was visibly shaken and was using breathing exercises to stay calm.
“It’s too stressful. I don’t want to hear all the negative,” Meehan said. “I’m in a game right now and it’s taking me out of it.”
After the discussion and Probst directing the questioning and, at times, holding him back, the team immunity was given to the Fans tribe.
“Easiest immunity every won,” Probst said as the idol was handed to the Fans tribe.
“Why don’t we just cut to the chase,” he said. “We’re having Tribal Council right now.”
Without the dramatics of the fire and a written vote, a verbal vote was taken on the Favorites tribe, with the eight players voting for Hantz and Hantz voting for Sheppard.
Hantz was instructed the leave the area and relief for the Favorites was immediately evident.
“Dawn, do you think the tribe is better off without Brandon?” Probst asked.
“I think for Brandon it is (better) and that’s best for the tribe,” she replied.
Earlier in the episode at the Fans camp, the Individual Immunity Idol had been hidden again after 30-year-old Reynold Toepfer played it at the previous Tribal Council.
And despite practically the entire tribe looking for it, Toepfer found it again.
“Survivor” airs Wednesdays on CBS.
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