In a never-ending contest to become the most foolish player in Survivor history, 22-year-old student Erik Reichenbach, of Ypsilanti, Mich., made a forceful bid for the title when he gave his immunity necklace to Natalie and was promptly booted from Survivor: Micronesia.
After returning back to camp from last week’s elimination, Erik told Natalie that he thought Amanda was the most popular remaining contestant with the jury. Natalie told Erik that if either won the next reward challenge, they should send the other person to Exile Island to look for the immunity idol, or take the other to the reward. Meanwhile, Amanda tried to manipulate Erik to send Parvati to Exile, playing to his sense of guilt at voting against her in the previous tribal council.
She succeeded. After proving himself the ultimate fan at the reward challenge, which tested the remaining five on how well they knew past seasons of the game, Erik sent Parvati to Exile and took Amanda on a reward helicopter ride to a luxury resort for spa time and a meal.
For immunity, the survivors had to solve three puzzles involving coded coordinates and rope. Again, Erik proved an easy victor. At camp, Natalie worried that she would be the one to go until the other ladies tried to convince her to get Erik to give her the necklace, telling her he didn’t have any support on the jury, and if he gave Natalie the necklace, that would prove to Cirie he could be trusted.
With reluctance, Natalie planted the thought into Erik’s head about giving up the necklace. Erik then talked to Cirie, who reiterated the benefits of such an action. After a convincing turn, Cirie reported to the group, “We got him on the hook; we just got to reel him in.”
At tribal council, the girls attacked Erik for making too many promises and not sticking to alliances. Erik admitted he was worried that he didn’t have much support among those on the jury. Erik said he needed some kind of redemption and right before the vote, to the shock of Natalie, he gave Natalie the immunity necklace. Ozzy and James cracked up completely on the jury bench; Jason shook his head. Of course, when the vote is revealed, it is Erik who gets the boot. “You guys drive me crazy!” Erik told the ladies upon leaving. James proudly crowed, “I lost my reign as the dumbest survivor ever!” –Cynthia Wang
Tell us: Was Erik a fool? Or just trying to be a good guy? Will you miss him on Survivor?