The Funny 115 - The Third One

#31. Normal Penner
Philippines - Episode 9

It's been a tough couple of episodes for Jonathan Penner.

We're twenty-two days into Survivor: Philippines, and at this point in the season he's pretty much just dead man walking.

With only nine players left in the game, and him not being one of the big five, he has no real options that might be available to him anymore. He has no real power. Plus, he's been told repeatedly that they're never gonna let a returning player actually win. And, oops, unfortunately he happens to be a returning player.

I shoulda stayed in Los Angeles

To make matters worse, he pretty much fucked up the vote at Tribal Council last night, and now not only is Abi right in his face and yelling at him...


Still room for growth

... he also has to sit there and listen as Carter tries to explain math to him.

Penner, let's say you had four sandwiches and I wanted all of them

All in all, it has just been a pretty shitty couple of weeks in the Jonathan Penner Survivor experience.

Oh yeah, he's also losing Survivor to fucking Blair from The Facts of Life

What Jonathan Penner needs at this point in the game is some sort of a pick-me-up.


Anything that would make his final few days here just a little more palatable.

Maybe I can get Jeff Kent to autograph me a baseball or something

And that's when he gets the pick-me-up he so desperately needs.  

In episode nine.

It's episode nine, and Probst announces the players will be competing for a special reward today

Probst pulls a sheet off a big pile of objects, and he shows them what they are going to be competing for.

It's toys

"Today's reward is that you will give as well as receive."

"You'll be taken to a local village. You'll get to be Survivor ambassadors."

"You'll get to bring some much needed school supplies."

"And a little joy, in the form of toys."

"In return, the village is cooking you a beautiful feast."

"It's gonna be a once in a lifetime afternoon."

And just like that, happiness has been introduced back into the world of Survivor: Philippines.


The players react with joy once they realize they'll get to interact with little kids.

So anyway, the players compete for the reward with the kids.

And, as luck would have it, our hero Jonathan Penner happens to win the reward. 

Yay! Survivor is fun again!

He is part of the winning team, along with Malcolm, Denise, and Carter.

So the four of them win the reward.

And then they set off to deliver all the school supplies.

"No Carter, you can't keep the hula hoop."

Okay, so here's the fun part.

The four of them arrive at the village with all the toys

And they are immediately swarmed by a mob of excited little kids.

It's not Bob Johnson! Yay!

And just like that, let the love fest begin.

Denise is greeted with open arms

They are basically taken by the hand, and dragged into the village to meet all the locals.

This Denise, we like her. For she is our size.

Come, strangers, let us take you to our state-of-the-art skate park

Once the four of them arrive in the village, we get a lot of fun stuff.

One of the fun things is Penner trying to whack a pinata with a stick

You know, kids, this is what I should have done to Flicka


We also get Malcolm trying to show the kids how to hula hoop.

He also explains to them why Survivor now always films in Fiji.

"It's because the show has cut its budget. That's why they never leave anymore."

I don't know what Carter does in the village.

I'm guessing he probably coaches them in track or something.

"My best advice is to just run very fast."

In any case, the players all have a great time.

"This is the happiest community I've ever walked into."

They feast.

They drink.

They make new friends.

"Hi Edna. I'm Denise. Nice to meet you."

But above all else, the star when it comes to the kids is Mister Jonathan Penner.


Penner winds up with an army of little kids who basically just follow him around.

He also winds up with a fan club of teenage girls.  

Who basically just stand around and love to listen to him talk.

Tell us more about The Bye Bye Man!

And this is where we get one of the funniest moments of Survivor: Philippines.

It happens right towards the start of the village scene, where Penner and the others are introducing themselves to the villagers. And trying to tell everyone their name.

I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say, this is one of the cutest things I have ever seen in an episode of Survivor.  It's just adorable.


"Hi kids. My name is Jonathan."

The kids, as they have probably been trained do when learning English, all repeat the word out loud.

(the kids, all in unison) "Jonnnnnnnnathan."

He then tries to clarify that his name is not unusual for an American.

"In America, my name is..."


And yep, you got it. When you learn a new name, you just repeat it out loud. That's what they teach you in school.

(the kids, all in unison) "Norrrrrrrrrrmal"

So now the kids all think his name is "Normal."

After a second, Jonathan realizes this.

And he quickly tries to backpedal.

"No, no, when I say normal, I mean it's... it's... it's..."

Then... once he realizes the absurdity of what he just did, he stops, and he starts to laugh.

Then the kids all start to laugh.

I love Normal, he's funny

Then Denise joins in on the side. And SHE starts to laugh.

All in all, it is just an adorable scene.

And that, folks, is why you don't give your kid a name that's so typical.

* Thank you to Ethan Kyle for helping me with the Goonies Brad Culpepper gif

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