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Krista on ‘Survivor: Redemption Island’: A game of What Ifs


Episode 1 recap


Video: Krista Klumpp bares it all. Her first confessional
on “Survivor: Redemption Island.”

A third season with Russell Hantz. A fourth season with “Boston Rob” Mariano.

Survivor: Redemption IslandReally, “Survivor”? Really?

At least it made for an interesting first Tribal Council on tonight’s season premiere of “Survivor: Redemption Island.”

Lost in the shuffle was Krista Klumpp, the Fairhope native and pharmaceutical sales rep. Little screen time could mean she’s deadly dull, safe for weeks or who knows? Even host Jeff Probst called her a question mark.

More question, and snark, after the jump …

[buy this episode — aff. link]

Kristina Klumpp, Survivor: Redemption Island

Krista Klumpp prays neither returning player
ends up on Zapatera.

Villains vs. villains: The 16 players arrived by chopper, already set for tribes Zapatera and Ometepe. Krista is playing on the purple-toned Zapatera team.

Russell and Boston Rob arrived in their own chopper and drew for their tribes. Zapatera will have to put up with Russell, while Ometepe gets Beantown’s finest.

Jeff announces the Redemption Island twist: After being voted out at Tribal Council, the losing contestant heads to the “island,” lives on the same rations and conditions and battles to remain with the next terminated player. Eventually, the king of the lepers will be allowed back in the regular game.

The two-time Redemption Island losers will be sent home, or to camp, or to jury duty, or maybe to the next “Criminal Minds” spinoff.

The tribes build their camps quickly thanks to their ringers.

[buy this episode — aff. link]

At Zapatera, Russell pulls aside Stephanie Valencia as his gal Friday, a k a the person he takes to the finals who actually beats him because he’s such a lousy end-game player.

Congratulations, Stephanie! Here’s your $1 million check.

Russell’s tribesmates aren’t idiots, having seen at least one episode of his two dozen appearances. They quickly figure out his repeat strategy and vow to rid themselves of him sometime before Jeff hands Stephanie that check we just mentioned.

At Ometepe, Boston Rob deduces that Kristina Kell was hunting through the toolbox for the clue to the unannounced hidden immunity idol. The producers cleverly hid it under Russell’s hat!

Boston Rob knows early on that Kristina must go: She’s onto his strategy and already hunting for that idol. And yes, she finds it, and then tells Francesca Hogi and the game’s biggest non-returning idiot, Phillip Sheppard. He not only claims to be a former federal agent, but does so every other sentence.


Kristina Kell, Survivor: Redemption Island

Kristina finds the hidden immunity idol at the Ometepe
camp without a clue. Yeah, we said it.

Day 2: There is no Day 2.

Video: The first challenge goes to …

Immunity/reward challenge: As shown in the preview, the challenge Push It Uphill has three stages. Shove some giant blocks, chop some ropes, solve a big block puzzle.

Russell and the Zapatera crew knock it out with maybe one close call, winning the challenge, a flint and the immunity idol. Krista is safe. And almost invisible.

Kristina Klumpp, Zapatera, Survivor: Redemption Island

Zapatera, with Krista at left, celebrates victory at the first
immunity challenge.

Voted out: Jeff ends Tribal Council with, “I have no idea what’s about to go down.”

It started when he asked who the leader of Ometepe was. Boston Rob cleverly suggests Phillip. Phillip begins his meltdown, truthfully explaining that Kristina and Francesca (or as he keeps calling her, “Fran-ques-qua”) had wanted him to oust Boston Rob. Francesca denies it, then Phillip blurts out that Kristina has the idol.

Kristina says the real plan was to vote out Natalie Tenerelli. So Kristina is just winning allies left and right.

Boston Rob asks to see Kristina’s idol, then tells her to give it to him or face being voted out. She refuses. And there you go.

Ometepe, Survivor: Redemption Island

Show of hands: Who wants pie?

At the voting booth, Boston Rob says how much he loves playing with amateurs (my God, he’s a professional “Survivor” contestant??) because they can’t shut up.

Natalie receives zero votes.

Instead, Phillip snags two votes, Kristina the schemer earns three votes, but it’s four votes for Francesca “Franquesqua” Hogi, the DC attorney, that send her … well, to Redemption Island. Anti-climactic, isn’t it? She takes her snuffed torch and heads off.

Ironic: The first words uttered by a contestant this season were from Francesca, in reference to Boston Rob and Russell’s arrival: “They sizing us up like we’re prey.”

So we started with 18 players, and we ended with 18 players.

Francesca Hogi, Survivor: Redemption Island

First out: Ometepe votes out Francesca 4-3-2.

Do you like the new twists? Should Russell and Boston Rob be back for another round?

[Videos to be added.]

“Survivor: Redemption Island” airs at 7 p.m. Wednesdays on on CBS 42.

Previous: Meet Krista Klumpp.
Next: Russell squares off against the very hairy, very redneck farmer. [Episode 2 — Lead, follow or get more camera time]


• • •

Back up for grabs … more “Survivor: Redemption Island” at survivor.wadeonbirmingham.com.

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