Neanderthal Man is the eighth episode of Survivor: Palau.


Day 19

Koror dealt with a rat infestation, which Coby ascribed to their sloppy handling of coconuts. He also complained about the lack of work done by the girls and Janu's wanting to quit for 8 days. After they won the fresh water reward, Jenn and Tom were at odds over how to use the water. Tom's suggestion of using it for drinking purposes won out. 

At Ulong, Steph was scared by Bobby Jon's intensity after the challenge. 

Tom and Ian also discussed the Day 1 plans they made with Stephenie to get to the end.

Day 20

Steph talked about Bobby Jon's primitiveness, noting how he blew snot rockets, didn't wash, and ate the entire crab. They also experienced the difficulties inherent in a two-person tribe, having trouble even just getting the outrigger in the water. The isolation made her very emotional.

Day 21

Bobby Jon caught a fish, again giving Ulong protein before the Immunity Challenge.

After the challenge, Koror reveled in their dominance in spite of their quirkiness. Coby was especially proud of his internal fortitude. 

Ulong was again dismayed by their performance. They pondered both the nature of the Immunity Challenge and the logistics of having just one person left. 


Challenge: Cool Hand Balut
Alternating players, each tribe must eat one, two, three, and four balut in each of four rounds. They must finish to score a point. Most points after four rounds wins. In a tie, each tribe chooses their own representative for the tiebreaker, eating five balut.
Reward: 55 gallons of fresh drinking water contained in a portable shower head, toiletries
Winner: Koror

Challenge: Under Current
One at a time, the tribe members have to swim to the closest of a line of five pontoons, pull themselves along a rope beneath it to a bag of puzzle pieces, unclip it, climb up, run along a balance beam back to the first pontoon, and swim back to shore. The two tribes must repeat the process four times, heading to the next farthest pontoon each time. Once all four bags have been collected, both members have to assemble the pieces to form a word-search grid. They must find listed words in the grid, take the letters used in more than one word, and rearrange them to form a mystery three-word phrase.
Winner: Koror

Tribal Council

Because only Stephenie and Bobby Jon attended Tribal Council, their votes would have canceled each other out, and they did not vote. Instead, they took part in a tiebreaker challenge.

Tribal Council 9:
Fire-Making Challenge
Participant Result
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Bobby Jon
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Bobby Jon Drinkard

Final Words

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Bobby Jon

I feel like a brand new man. I really do. I wish I could keep going. I have a lot left in me but I hope I can turn that energy and that attitude into something positive for me. I am definitely proud of Stephenie because I think she's honestly, probably the top player in the game. I would just tell Stephenie to keep on doing what she is doing. I mean, the girl is almost invincible.

Still in the Running

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 Bobby Jon
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  • With Bobby Jon's elimination, Stephenie was the last remaining member of Ulong.
    • This marked the first time a tribe was left with only one member.
  • This is the first time the fire-making tiebreaker is used.
    • This is the only fire-making tiebreaker to take part outside the final four.
  • Ian and Tom, the two castaways competing for Koror in the Reward Challenge, were the two castaways to compete in neither of Koror's challenges in the previous episode "The Great White Shark Hunter". As the sit-out rule does not apply across episodes, this was entirely a coincidence.
  • This is the first episode to air final words, but not show any votes, as none were cast. Instead, a brief montage highlighting Bobby Jon's Survivor experience is shown.
  • The name of the Reward Challenge, Cool Hand Balut is a reference to the 1967 film Cool Hand Luke.


Survivor: Palau Episodes

"This Has Never Happened Before!" · "Love Is in the Air, Rats Are Everywhere" · "Dangerous Creatures and Horrible Setbacks" · "Sumo at Sea" · "The Best and Worst Reward Ever" · "Jellyfish 'n Chips" · "The Great White Shark Hunter" · "Neanderthal Man" · "I Will Not Give Up" · "Exile Island" · "I'll Show You How Threatening I Am" · "We'll Make You Pay" · "It Could All Backfire" · "The Ultimate Shock" · "Reunion"

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