"Beware of the Curse"
Season The Cursed Idol
Author IAmNothing712
Episode Number 1/13
Episode Chronology
Next "Can't Cut the Mustard"

This is the first episode of Survivor: The Cursed Idol.


Day 1 Reward Challenge: Morning Walk
Tribes will have to carry four weighted crates (containing supplies) across the island, with some obstacles along the way. First tribe to reach the other end of the island with all four crates wins reward.
Reward: The winning tribe will have all four of their supply crates, whereas the losing tribe will get nothing but their machete. The four crates contain the following:

  • Tarps and their machete
  • Fishing supplies
  • A small sack of rice, manioc flour and few fruits
  • A Sears tool kit

Winner: Cebu

Day 2 Reward Challenge: Beach Bash
Tethered into pairs, whole tribe must retrieve sandbags buried underwater and place them at their designated end zone. This a best-of-four challenge. If the tribes are tied 2-2, the whole tribe will square off for one final match.
Reward: A piece of flint, lanterns and tinder
Additional Stipulation: If Davao wins, they can also choose two from the four crates they carried at the previous Reward Challenge. But if Cebu wins once again, they will have the option to give Davao any supply crate.
Winner: Davao (chose to pick the tarp and food crates)

Immunity Challenge: War Chariot
Riding a chariot, four tribe members (three runners and one passenger) must retrieve four sets of keys to a tower. Two other tribemates will go the second level and use a grappling hook to retrieve flags, each with keys that will unlock the final level of the tower. Once the tribe reaches the final level, the one tribemate must to solve a large sliding puzzle and must get the piece with the knife placed on it and use it to cut ropes which will reveal a slide leading to a pit of leaves. The last tribe members must slide down to the pit and retrieve the Immunity Idol, which is buried there. First person to retrieve the Immunity Idol underneath wins it for their tribe.
Additional Stipulation: If Cebu wins, they will get flint.
Winner: Cebu


Day 1

Aboard the BRP Gregorio Del Pilar, a partol frigate of the Philippine Navy, sixteen castaways were marooned over the pristine yet treacherous islands of Caramoan Islands, Philippines, for a chance to win one million dollars. Divided into tribes, named after the two bustling cities other than Manila, the castaways paddled to shore where they met Jeff Probst, who welcomed them with a surprise twist, in the form of a small necklace he was wearing.

When you get voted out, you will have one last taste of power in the game. You may have lost the money, but you will still have an opportunity to make an upset. This is the Cursed Idol. Whoever gets voted out will hand this idol to one of the remaining tribemates, effectively giving them an additional vote the next time he/she goes to Tribal Council. The idol is still in play even if that recipient wins immunity, because the idol will take effect at his/her next visiting Tribal Council. The only way you can negate "the curse," you must use a Hidden Immunity Idol, or win an individual Immunity Challenge, if you received the Cursed Idol after the merge.

–Jeff Probst (on the mechanics of the Cursed Idol)

This Cursed Idol is like, a one final move. I maybe out, but once I do get voted out, whoever gets cursed will have a target on his back, and they'll probably think twice before voting me out. Because that is a great way to leave the game with a bang.


After introducing the twist, Jeff then subjected the castaways into their first Reward Challenge.

As the castaways rushed to collect their crates, the purple Cebu tribe went ahead, with two people carrying one crate. Eddie, the oldest of Cebu continued to stumble at the obstacle course.

Hmmm, gone.

–Seth (on Eddie)

On the other hand, the green Davao tribe got lost in the jungle, with no obstacle course in sight. As Davao finally made it through the obstacle course, Cebu was already near the end of the jungle. In the end, a challenge blow-out resulted to the Cebu tribe's first victory, and were given the privilege to possess all four crates. A visibly upset Davao tribe were given nothing but a map to their camp. After the challenge, Jeff revealed that a clue to the Hidden Immunity Idol is hidden somewhere at camp.

First 15 minutes of the game and we are already floundering.

–Adrianna (about their loss)

Upon reaching camp, the victorious Cebu tribe immediately went to work, but they realized they do not have flint or some other fire-starting material in any of the crates, to their dismay.

We thought that winning this challenge will give us flint right off the bat. I will care less of not having blankets at this point, because we need fire.

–Wes (on the absence of flint)

After desperate attempts to make fire using failed fire saws, Alanna came to the rescue, using her glasses as a magnifying glass, making Cebu one of the very few Survivor tribes who created fire without any help of a flint or a provided fire-starting kit. With their water well found, they started to boil water for drinking. With their fire problem over with, the purple tribe went to the beach to get to know one another.

While the rest of the tribe bonded at the beach, Belinda was back at the woods contemplating of what she will say to them, because she feared that telling her financial successes will not benefit her.

I don't know if I would like to tell them my success in life, because I don't want them to get rid of me because I do not need the money, yet I do not want to be the outsider here. But still, I am the perfect opponent at the final Tribal Council, because nobody would want to vote for me because I'm rich. But of course, once I get to the end, I will give theme a good reason why to give their votes to me.


With this, she decided to find the clue and the idol. After ten minutes of searching, she found the clue, but the clue was so vague, she could not find the idol. Fearing that ther others might suspect her for looking out for the idol, Belinda went to the beach to join her tribemates, under the premise that she defecated in the woods. Belinda introduced herself as a low-budget businesswoman.

Judging the way Belinda talks about her being a struggling businesswoman, I felt she's hiding something. I don't know, but I have a sinking feeling that her small business is not really small afterall.


Over at the Davao tribe, the challenge loss did not let the tribe to get down to business. With no fire, the tribe decided to make shelter. Delia, the most experienced in terms of camping instructed her tribemates to collect fronds and roots for their roof. While collecting wood, Adrianna and Brock stumbled upon their water well. The two discussed strategy. Adrianna stated that she is athletic enough to bring the tribe to future victories, not just for eye candy. Brock on the other hand promised to keep Adrianna.

Adrianna looks like our strongest female. She proved at the Reward Challenge that she is a competitor.


I hope Brock does not perceive me as this bitch who uses her womanly powers to seduce him to whatever I want. I'm not a flirt. I am a winner all my life, and this early, I have to show qualities of a winner.


The two discussed that their alliance for the meantime should remain as is, until they recruit other members who are deemed to be trustworthy. As the two walk back to the beach, Adrianna revealed she was worried about the Cursed Idol.

I am scared about this Cursed Idol. That means the grudge that person voted out will materialize and give somebody a possible target on another's back. I thought it will just happen when the Jury starts talking." Brock replied: "We'll just have to worry about that when we lose the Immunity Challenge.

–Adrianna (on the Cursed Idol)

Meanwhile, Cyrus and Delia tried to form an alliance as well, but Delia revealed that she does not want to do strategy to get by in the game.

I don't believe in strategy. I just don't want it. Strategizing for me is like the root of all evil on Survivor. Backstab here, double-cross there, it will just bring forth hurt feelings and bitterness. My voting style would be keeping who contributed at camp more, doing better in this challenges and that's it.

–Delia (on not doing strategy)

As much as I would want to like and trust Delia, her apathy towards strategy irks me. If she wouldn't commit to my proposed alliance, or any form of strategy for that matter, she needs to go, because she will come across as untrustworthy.


At night, the Davao tribe did some stargazing before going to sleep. Long and behold, Serena revealed a stunning secret: She was born male, to her tribemates' surprise. Serena was glad to receive such positive reception of her condition.

Serena's condition doesn't bother me, but if we lose because of her, I don't think voting her off first is the right move. It would just look derogatory.


Her confession makes her a more of a man in her own right. Not everybody can face their demons and completely get past them.


Being a transwoman will be my biggest challenge, not the elements, not my tribemates. If I make it to the end, I am sure I can win this, considering the odds I overcame to get there. I have demons, and have released them. Now, hard part's over. I can be the first transgender to win a reality show!


Day 2

Unknown to Serena, not everyone were moved. The next morning, Cyrus and Delia took a morning walk to the woods, and talked about their reservations about Serena.

If Serena's sissy-ness gets in the way, we have to vote her out.


Well, I hope there is still some "man" left inside of her, because we need strength in challenges. Because if not, off with her head, no pun intended.


The tribes reconvened for what they thought was their first Immunity Challenge. After giving out the instructions, Jeff revealed that if Davao wins the challenge, they can have two of the four crates they lost from yesterday's challenge. Seth and Hallie vs. Brock and April
Wes and Alanna vs. Adrianna and Carson
Carly and Belinda vs. Serena and Delia
Eddie and Curtis vs. Cyrus and Freddy The battle became intense early on, with the tribes' resident giants, Cebu's Seth and Davao's Brock clashed for the first point, while their partners, Hallie and April respectively were almost dragged by their partners. For the first round, Davao scores the first point.

At the second round, while Adrianna and Carson found the sandbag, Wes pulled Adrianna and Carson's rope so they could not move while Alanna tried to steal the sandbag from the rival pair. Alanna successfully retrieved the bag but her leg was pulled by Carson. Carson regained the bag, and was racing back to their end zone, but Adrianna was being pulled by Wes. not disabling them from reaching their mat. Wes and Alanna took hold of Adrianna, who held the bag at the time an literally carried her to Cebu tribe end zone, winning the first point for Cebu.

During the third round, Serena led the charge by tossing Carly, while Belinda and Delia duke it out in finding the sandbag. When Belinda got the sandbag, Serena turned on her, and successfully stole the bag. When Serena was about to pass the bag to Delia, Carly intercepted it. Belinda on the other hand, was waiting to receive the bag, but Serena pulled Belinda and Carly's ropes, making Belinda fail in catching it. In the end, Serena and Delia scored Davao's second point.

During the fourth round, Carly and Belinda were at the mercy of the stronger Delia and Serena. Davao scored their third point. And with the challenge being best of four, Eddie & Curtis and Cyrus & Freddy did not need to compete. Davao wins reward! Having their flint, Davao was given the choice of which crate they would want to win. After much deliberation, they chose the crates with the tarp and the food. Ecstatic for their first win, the Davao tribe finally had fire and started to boil water and cook rice.

This feast brought us closer together. Now with our morale boosted after our miserable loss yesterday, I think we can send Cebu's ass to Tribal Council tomorrow night.


Immediately after eating, Adrianna and Brock went to the water well to discuss the idol. The two decided not to look after it for the meantime, since first impressions are still forming.

Brock and I decided not to look for the idol for now, because we don't want to get marked this early should we get caught. Remember Christine?


Day 3

After receiving Tree Mail, the two tribes convened for their first Immunity Challenge. Jeff reveals their tribal Immunity Idol: an intimidating statue of a Mumbaki, or a witch doctor.

Task Delegations Cebu Davao
Chariot runners Seth, Curtis, Wes Brock, Freddy, Carson
Chariot passenger Hallie Adrianna
Grappling hook Carly, Eddie Delia, April
Sliding Puzzle Belinda Cyrus
Slide Alanna Serena

The tribes raced to retrieve the keys, where Davao took the lead when Cebu's Hallie struggled to untangle the first key. Cebu stole the lead when Carly and Eddie managed to grapple all the next set of keys in few swings. Davao bridged the gap when Cyrus solved the puzzle faster than Belinda, leaving Serena and Alanna at the final stage. Alanna successfully found the tribal Immunity Idol, winning immunity for Cebu, sending the Davao tribe to Tribal Council. Back at camp, Cyrus approached to Delia about her voting options. Delia stated that she would vote for Serena blew the challenge for the tribe. Cyrus then asked Delia if they could make a long-term alliance. Delia yet again rejected the offer, saying that strategy is not her priority at all because she believed that strategizing is the catalyst for all misunderstandings between contestants.

I really don't want strategy, I just don't like the fact that people slit each others throats. I hate that idea.


As much as I would like to keep Delia for her strong work ethic, I don't feel I can trust her after she said she doesn't want to strategize.


Instead of agreeing with Delia to eliminate Serena, Cyrus campaigned to oust Delia instead. Serena heard the news, worrying her.

I don't think they could just send me home for the lame reason of I did not find the friggin' statue on time.


On the other hand, Freddy and April thought that despite Delia's non-commitment to strategy, they stressed that Delia was an asset to the tribe.

Mama Delia's a great person to be around camp. But as much as her apathy towards strategy turned me off, I felt that since we are still in the group competition part of the game, we have to eliminate the weaker ones first for us to win the next challenge.


Adrianna and Brock also talked about Delia, where they said that though the lady is a free vote, her apathy is a problem. Delia on the other hand campaigned on voting Serena out because she perceived Serena's challenge performance as dismal.

Serena has to go. She can't even do the simplest of things.


At Tribal Council, Serena became emotional because she felt she was targeted for a weak reason; and she thought she was targeted by Delia because she was a transwoman. Delia disagreed, saying that Serena's condition did not became a factor, but her not finding the idol at the challenge was. Confused by Delia's statements about Serena not finding the idol on time making her a weak link, Jeff asked Delia if she had any strategy, where she answered none. She said that she hated the ethical issues that surround the game. In the end, Delia's non-committal to the true nature of the game sent her home in an unanimous 7-1 vote. But before Jeff snuffed her torch, Delia had one final order of business, handing the Cursed Idol to one of the remaining players, in which she chose Serena, making her vulnerable at the next Tribal Council she goes to.

Tribal Council

Tribal Council 1:
CursedIdol Delia
Delia (7 votes)
CursedIdol AdriannaCursedIdol AprilCursedIdol Brock
CursedIdol CarsonCursedIdol CyrusCursedIdol FreddyCursedIdol Serena
Adrianna, April, Brock, Carson, Cyrus, Freddy, & Serena
CursedIdol Serena
Serena (1 vote)
CursedIdol Delia
CursedIdol Serena
CursedIdol Delia
Delia Rumsfeld

Voting Confessionals

At the challenge, I can't believe you can't find the damn idol, just shows how weak you are.


Delia, I did not do anything to hurt your feelings, so I don't understand why are you attacking me like this. I know you're voting for me because I am not "normal," not because I'm weak. You might be a strong competitor, but your so-called ethical issues towards me and this game shows you are not deserving to be here. Good riddance.


You did not came here to strategize, but I do.


You have weakly measured a person's worth. And this overshadows the physical strength that we could have used against the other tribe. Hopefully you learn your lesson after this.


I didn't really care of your statements against Serena. Well, not that I didn't care entirely, it's just that your absolutist beliefs made you a shallow person. And your "I'm not gonna strategize" speech totally turned me off. This is a social game silly. Good luck.


This hurts, but how you treat people outside of your circle will hurt us more.


I like you, but not your actions; and your row with Serena is just pointless.


You're a bigot. Go home.


Final Words

Well, my statements towards Serena were definitely misconstrued. What I was trying to say is that, I do not support her actions and everything, but I do not discriminate her. I wished I could go back to the tribe and explain myself because I felt horrible. Serena, you're a good kid, if you think I had hurt your feelings, I really do apologize. As for not strategizing, it caught me big time. I wished I made a move when I still had the chance, but I felt overwhelmed and afraid that I could hurt anybody's feelings, but in the end, you'll realize you can never be the good guy all the time. As for the Davao tribe, wins this for me, okay?

–Delia Rumsfeld

Next Time on Survivor

  • Serena's spirit is in an all-time low; and a fun Filipino street game will not be as fun for Cebu.  

Author's Notes

  • The Philippines is divided into three island groups: Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Manila is the key city of Luzon, while Cebu and Davao are the key cities of Visayas and Mindanao respectively.
  • The first Reward Challenge was inspired by the "Cannon Carry" challenge from Survivor: Pearl Islands an the infamous 11-mile trek challenge in Survivor: This challenge was also used during the second season of our local show, back in 2009, which was shot in Palau. But I will not be that severe in putting my characters in an island filled with landmines like they did in the show. They were given a designated pathways, while marked the landmark-filled pathways with warning signs.
  • The Day 2 Reward Challenge was inspired by the "Beach Bash" challenge from Survivor: Micronesia and the fan-favorite pillow fight challenge from Survivor: Exile Island and Heroes vs. Villains.
  • When the tribes reached their camp on day 1, they found clay pots ("palayok" in Filipino) instead of the metal pots. Clay pots are used in traditional Filipino cooking, with elders stating that cooking food in clay pots make food more delicious to the bite.
Survivor: The Cursed Idol episodes

"Beware of the Curse" · "Can't Cut the Mustard" · "Placebo Effect" · "Buy a Lemon" · "Dropping Like Flies" · "Go to Your Momma" · "She's Joshing Me!" · "Reality Check" · "Queer the Pitch" · "Stuff It in Your Face" · "Feeding Frenzy" · "I'm Dumb, but Not That Much" · "I Don't Forgive, I Get Even"