We rejoin our castaways back in camp after the most recent tribal council. Everyone is congratulating the Three Amigos for getting rid of El Guapo -- Phillip, the Specialist, head of Stealth R Us. No one is really upset, and are in fact pleased to never have to say "Stealth R Us" again.

But when morning dawns, everyone is feeling a little down. Brenda starts crying and Dawn tells her that everyone has been through so much -- Brandon, Phillip, voting people off. Brenda seems to have just come to the realization that it's dangerous out there.

Reward challenge

Just in time to save the day, it's tree-mail and news they are headed to a "Survivor" auction. They each get $500, there will be no sharing of money and the bids are in increments of $20. Malcolm swears to save his money in case there is an advantage to be bought. He immediately buys a bucket of beer for $20.

Reynold is the next bidder, buying a covered plate for $180. He is given a chance to switch for one of two covered plates, but he stays with his original pick, which is a slice of pizza. He passed on a rotten coconut and the rest of the pizza. Sherri immediately offers to buy it for $500, putting her out of the rest of the bidding.

Next up, Dawn buys a roasted chicken for $500. Malcolm spends his last $480 for a clue to a hidden immunity idol. Then Andrea buys a tasty Italian dish, but agrees to trade it for beans and rice for the whole tribe.

Brenda wants to bid, but she's afraid of getting something terrible. Cochran ends up buying an advantage in the next immunity challenge and poor Brenda spends money for pig brains.

Next up are letters from home for $20. Malcolm, Dawn and Sherri are out of money, so no love for them. Eddie buys the last item, a huge bowl of peanut butter to be shared with the tribe. They have 60 seconds to grab what the can and they smear it all over themselves and scrape it off into a communal bowl when they get back to camp. Allow us to express the sentiment for you: Ick.

People cry over their letters while Malcolm and Reynold work on Sherri to join them. If they can get Sherri and Eric, they can knock out Cochran and really bust the alliance of six.

Early the next morning, Malcolm goes hunting for the idol and gets discovered by Andrea and Cochran. Andrea follows him and won't budge in order to keep him from finding the idol. They are in a standoff that ends when they both agree to go back to camp.

Malcolm is starting to feel foolish. The clue directs him to head toward the water, then look left for a tree growing out of the rocks. He thinks "water" means the well; we think it means the, you know, water as in the lagoon, the largest source of water they have. On the other hand, he's excelling at "Survivor" and we're just sitting here making snarky comments.

Immunity challenge

The challenge this week is of strength. It involves holding a pole by a rope. with one hand The pole is the equivalent of a third of their starting body weight. Every five minutes, they drop their hand down to a lower knot. Cochran reads his advantage, which allows him, at any time, to move his hand back up two knots.

Cochran uses his advantage early on and so while the rest get down to the end of rope, which has no knot to brace their hands, he is sitting pretty.

Brenda and Eric fall out, followed by Sherri, Malcolm, Andrea, Dawn and Reynold. Impossibly, it comes down to Eddie and Cochran, and Cochran wins it. So much for the Three Amigos' big plan.

The victory goes to Cochran's head. He declares, to the camera, that he is the greatest challenge monster ever. He's won more of the individual challenges than anyone else, and if people don't like it, then he's just going to keep winning.

Back in the real world, Malcolm drafts Sherri into the Three Amigos with the promise to get rid of Andrea. Reynold gets Eric on board, but Eric later says he's playing both sides and he tells his alliance he's with them. They agree to split the vote between Malcolm and Reynold.

Sherri decides they are all cracked not to realize she is in control, but she isn't sure what side she will go with.

Tribal council

There's lots of discussion about who's in, who's out, and who is flipping. Sherri says it's something to think about if you are on the bottom. That surprises and worries Dawn, who says she hopes Sherri doesn't feel that way.

Jeff Probst questions Cochran about the likelihood someone will flip alliances tonight. He lays out the scenarios, and says if it happens, it will be an all new game.

We see some of the votes, and they are for Malcolm, Reynold, Andrea. We end up in a three-way tie with each one getting three votes. Another round of voting is ordered and just like that, our favorite "Survivor," Malcolm, is voted off.

He takes it pretty well, but laments at having spent $480 for a clue and still being unable to find the idol. He found three for nothing.

Next time: Reynold tries to hold on while the Super Alliance considers turning on itself.