The Funny 115 - The Third One

#49. The Day Benry Became King
Nicaragua - episode 5

Has there ever been a season as odd as Survivor: Nicaragua?

Seriously, between storylines that abruptly start and stop and make no sense, and characters who randomly appear then disappear just because it's convenient for the story, and the fact that the major character of the season (Na Onka) randomly quits on day 28 even though she has an idol in her bag, and the fact that the ending of the season is largely dependent on something mysterious that happened between Sash and Jane that legally they weren't allowed to show it in the episode, there's a reason that Nicaragua has historically been known as "the weirdest Survivor season."  And you'll note that's even WITHOUT getting into the bizarrely vindictive edit the producers gave to Purple Kelly, and the fact that the winner of the season basically only won because everyone else in the game assumed as a child he must have been kicked in the head by a horse.  Even WITHOUT those two aspects of Survivor: Nicaragua, it's already an incredibly odd season.

Likes the zoo

Because they had so many constraints they were required to work around, and because they had a story that didn't really make any sense, editing a season like Nicaragua must have been a nightmare for everyone involved.  

Buuuuuuuuut at the same time, that doesn't mean they couldn't have a little fun with it too.



And this, of course, is where we come to the story of Benry.


Do you remember Benry?  Of course you don't.  He was about as insignificant a Survivor character as you can get.  Which is impressive considering that Nicaragua is about as insignificant a season as you are going to find.  Combine an insignificant Survivor character, with an insignificant Survivor season, with a douchy ass nickname (Ben + Henry = Benry) that you basically just want to slap in the face, and you wind up with a character that has always been begging to have a Funny 115 entry written about him.  And ladies and gentlemen, that's what I'm here for.  It's time.  It's time for us to finally delve into the legacy of Benry.

For starters, let me get this part out of the way.  Benry really only has ONE big moment in Nicaragua.  That's it.  He does nothing for four episodes, then he has THE BIG BENRY SCENE, then he quickly goes back to doing nothing and being irrelevant to the season.  And then approximately twenty-six episodes later he is voted out.  Which to me is one of the greatest Survivor story arcs ever.  

If you were to map out Benry's Survivor story arc on a graph it would basically look like this.

Benry's storyline is basically my grandfather having a stroke

Now that we've gotten that out of the way, let's dig a little deeper into Benry's magnificent story arc.  So you can see exactly what I am talking about.

I'm Benry.  Who are you?  Not Benry.  Peace.

In episode one of Nicaragua, we're introduced to the latest in big new awesome over-the-top fun Survivor characters.

His name is Ben Henry.  aka "Benry."

Who you might recognize as the first guy to do duck lips during his intro shot

Benry is a member of La Flor.  And he wears yellow.  And, he's.... well.... I don't really know what he is.  Because we don't really ever see him or hear from him all that much.

What we do know about him is that he's pretty good in challenges

And that he prefers to stand behind Na Onka

And that he likes to stick out his tongue a lot

And that he likes to stick out his tongue a lot

And that he likes to stick out his tongue a lot

And that he likes to stick out his tongue a lot

And that he likes to stick out his tongue a lot

And that he likes to stick out his tongue a lot

And that he likes to stick out his tongue a lot

Okay shit, that's enough.  So yes, Benry is good in challenges, and he likes to stick out his tongue a lot.  And that's really his entire story arc through the first four episodes of the season.

Oh, and he also likes to high five people

Oh, and he also likes to high five people

Oh, and he also likes to high five people

Oh, and he also likes to high five people

Oh, and he also likes to high five people

Damnit, STOP.  Not again.  

So Benry is the guy who does well in the challenges, and who sticks his tongue out a lot, and who we could legally refer to as a "high five enthusiast."

He also has one of the craziest happy grins I have ever seen in my life


Suffice it say, Benry doesn't do a whole lot when it comes to the storyline.  He's really just this weird minor background character who has a couple of fun quirks about him.

Like, say, this dance

Here he manages to hike up his pants

And did I mention the duck lips?

Benry competes in some challenges.  He wins some challenges.  But for the most part, he doesn't actually do anything that is relevant to the story.  His major highlights in the first four episodes of Nicaragua pretty much consist of this:

Standing behind the water tube

Participating in the "La Flor" chant


Acknowledging that yes, Wendy was indeed voted out at the last Tribal Council

Handing the Medallion of Power to Jimmy

And agreeing that yes, there are two alliances on La Flor at the moment

And, of course, my favorite.

Standing way too close to Fabio while grabbing his own balls

Through four episodes, Benry is here.  He's full of good cheer.  And you better get used to it.

He also sticks out his tongue a lot

Oh yeah, and I guess I better mention the OTHER big elephant in the room when it comes to Benry.

He's even better at throwing things underhanded at a target than Coach is

Et tu, Dragonslayer?

Et tu?

Hey guys, did you hear me say Barrelslayer?

So anyway, that's Benry.  He's not really a part of Nicaragua when it comes to anything involving the storyline.  But at least he's a fun little background character.  It's not saying much, but I mean it's better than most people.

Benry has a sad sometimes just like you do

And then, we come to episode five.  


Where Benry loudly announces his presence, and lets us know just how dominant he is going to become for the rest of the season.


Episode five is the twist episode.  Where the two tribes are shuffled up, and the old people are mixed in with the young people to create two entirely new tribes.

And Benry likes it, because this means he might actually get a storyline for once


Benry's new tribe involves him, and a couple of young people.  And then Tyrone and a couple of old people.  Frankly it doesn't really matter because the only two people who are relevant here are Tyrone and Benry.

"Hi I'm Dan."
"Hi I'm Benry, can I give you a high five?"

Benry, of course, gets a couple of good confessionals in his new tribe.  Because if we know anything about the editors this season, we know they are going to make his storyline relevant and compelling.

Here Benry acknowledges that it's raining out

Here he explains that Tyrone likes chicken

Here he points out that he's hungry

Annnnd then, we get the moment.  THE BENRY MOMENT.

It happens at the end of episode five.  When the new Espada tribe heads to Tribal Council for the first time.

This is where Benry walks up to the podium for the first time

And he casts a vote for the big challenge beast on Espada - basically the older black version of Benry

And as the young buck knocks off his elder, he has a message to deliver

Benry's big moment, ladies and gentlemen.

The new sheriff has officially arrived.

"It's time to dethrone the King of Espada."

"Benry's here, baby."

With his message delivered, and his moment of badassery officially documented on film, Benry only has one last step to cement his new role as the King of Nicaragua.  All he has to do at this point is stuff his vote down into the ballot box.  In the same way that Tyrone stuffed his face with way too much chicken today.  After all, that's the reason we're here.

So Benry reaches over to shove his ballot into the urn

And as he does, he accidentally smacks a bronze paperweight that is sitting on the table with his other hand


It goes clattering to the ground with a loud THUD

Thus sort of ruining his big BADASS BENRY MOMENT

And here's my favorite part of this little moment.

"My bad."

All fixed

Here's the entire gif of Benry fucking up his little BENRY'S HERE speech, in case you missed it in the episode.  It happens very quick.

So anyway, that's Benry's one and only big character moment in Survivor: Nicaragua.  He's this minor little background character for four episodes.  Then he LOUDLY ANNOUNCES TO THE WORLD THAT HE HAS ARRIVED AND THAT HE'S GOING TO BE A FORCE TO BE RECKONED WITH AND THAT EVERYONE BETTER FEAR HIM.  Then he bumps into the paperweight.  Then we never hear from him again.  And that's his entire story arc.

You think I'm kidding?

How about we run down Benry's highlight reel AFTER he has announced to the world that "Benry's here, baby!"  

Let's see what "here" actually means when it comes to his actual story presence.

In the second half of the season, he is mostly known for...

Tugging on an invisible rope, with beginner duck lips

Chewing this food

Holding up this boat

Being pointed at by Holly

Smooshing his face

And my personal favorite moment after Benry has arrived.

Reflecting by the cow

Suffice it to say, Benry's story doesn't actually change after BENRY IS HERE and BENRY HAS ARRIVED.  It's really just more of the same.

He does refer to Alina as a "dirt squirrel" in a vote, and that's kinda fun


But yeah, if you're looking for some amazing fun Benry action after episode five, you're going to be sorely disappointed.  He just doesn't really do all that much.  Even after he has been introduced to society at his big debutante ball.

Here he is back to wooing again

Here he is wearing a hat

Guys, I like hot dogs, they are tender and warm

And, of course, as always...

Reflecting by the cow

The legend that is Benry Henry is voted out at the end of day 32.  

Having arrived.  Having been announced.  Having thrown things underhand at a tile even better than Coach.

And really... unfortunately... that's about it.

Peace out, Benryland


He may not have ever done much.  He may not have ever been all that significant to the storyline.  But at the end of the day, we will always have that moment.  That one big BENRY MOMENT.  Where he announced his presence.  Where he announced he was a force to be reckoned with.  And then he knocked over a paperweight.  And then the editors left it in the episode and laughed at him, and then they went right back to just making him irrelevant again.

"Oops.  My bad."

Like I said, it must have been a chore to try to edit a season like Nicaragua.  

But at least the editors had fun with it.

P.S.  Oh and he also sticks out his tongue a lot.

P.P.S.  Here's a great picture caption from a reader of mine named Vic Shuttee.

Bradley Cooper's most unhinged performance

P.P.P.S.  Speaking of fun stuff, this string of comments about Benry from my Facebook group Zoe's Lobster Shack makes me laugh every time.

P.P.P.P.S.  Love this email from a reader named Matthew Divoli:

One of my favorite Benry moments (I can't believe I'm actually writing that) is in episode 7. After he leads his tribe to victory in the immunity challenge, the very last thing you hear before it cuts to commercial is "I should be a pirate!" It's one of the most bizarre reactions ever to winning a challenge and still makes me laugh every time I hear it.

P.P.P.P.P.S.  I've always been amused by the name "Benry" and how goofy it really is.  So here's an attempt to make some similarly goofy nicknames using the same naming convention (first syllable + end of last name) for other famous Survivor players.  A few of my friends put our heads together and we came up with our favorites.  Enjoy.  :)

Jeff Probst's first Survivor girlfriend, Gews

Two-time Survivor winner, Swine


If Boberts come back, I will fall out

Samoa's beloved funnyman, Danger Doll

Mmmm hmmm, it's Cranklin

Let me introduce you to my butler, Rudkins

Legendary Cook Islands firecracker, Bee


Feast on the souls of the damned with Hellis

The unfortunately named chicken nugget enthusiast, Wale

Gargamel hates this guy.  It's Pmurf.

Forrest Gump's true love, Jenny

And finally, enjoy the dance stylings of Ringham

** Thank you to Cory Gage for the Boston Rob/Fafaru FUBC **

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