I think I am going to love this season of Survivor. There are so many interesting people and I don’t think we’ve scratched the surface yet of all the “characters” on the island.
We get to see Francesca on RI and it looks like it is going to suck. The shelter doesn’t look like much of a shelter, there is barely any food, and other than Survivor allowing you to have your luxury item, there is nothing or no one to help keep your sanity in check. I can’t want to see how it plays out if someone is on RI for an extended period of time and enters back into the game. Do we know how many people come back and at what point? I assumed one person and my guess was right around the merge. But you know what happens when you assume! I would be pissed if I was on RI for 2 weeks, survived that whole time, got back into the game, only to promptly get voted out. That person could turn into an easy vote out or a huge swing vote for someone or new life for someone.
Philip is nuts!!! I’ve heard the comparison to Coach but it’s different for me. I really didn’t like Coach. I can’t put my finger on it but he annoyed the crap out of me. He tried to come off as this big threat and “villain” but he was just pathetic. I hate to be that mean but that man just rubbed me the wrong way. Plus I think Coach was playing up a caricature of himself rather than being himself. With Philip, I think this is who Philip is. I don’t Philip is pretending to be anything he isn’t. He’s just nuts…..ha!!! And I hate to say it but he is great TV. I can’t wait to see what this crazy man is going to do or say next. He’s like Michael Scott to me. Every time he goes to say something or have another one of his post-challenge debriefings, I just cringe at what is going to come out of his mouth. When he had his confessional behind that tree and started getting choked up about his patriotism…my husband was busting a gut laughing and I was laughing at how hard my husband was laughing. But as out there as that was, I truly believe that Philip has a huge love for our country and how can you not like someone like that! AS Boston Rob says, “you know what they say about government jobs…stressful!” But the Philip line of the day was the following interaction with Probst:
Philip: I will outlast any MAN over there.
Probst: How about the women?
Philip: Well that’s for another day. We’ll have to see.
Team Rob and the Big Blindside
One of the most perfectly executed tribals ever for Rob. Tyson screwed him on Heroes vs. Villains but luckily for him, this set of groupies know how to follow direction. Rob had three goals with this tribal…1. split up Matt and Andrea 2. get Kristina to play her idol and 3. get Philip to trust him. Rob was starting to notice how close Andrea and Matt were getting. He knows from personal experience how dangerous a powerful twosome can be. So he thinks these two need to split up pronto. His main target is Andrea but that changes after the immunity challenge. After the challenge, Matt goes over to Team Russell and shakes their hands after losing. This did not sit well with Rob (and other members of the tribe) AT ALL. Not only was it stupid to shake the hands of the people who just beat you for immunity, but it shows a social element Matt is playing that can be dangerous. Strike #2 against him. So Rob decides to switch his target from Andrea to Matt. So within his 6 person alliance, we see the true 4 person alliance formed between Rob, Natalie, Ashley, and Grant. In order to make goals #1 and #2 happen, Rob sets up a plan. With the 6 person alliance, he tells the girls to vote for Kristina, the guys to vote of Philip (3-3 split), Kristina will play the idol and Philip will go home. Then he pulls the real alliance of 4 aside, explains the danger of Matt and Andrea, to which they all agree, and the four of them decide to vote for Matt. Great plan!!! Now you have the Philip factor. Earlier in the show, after the last tribal council, Phil pulled Rob aside and told him that as long as I am not on RI, you own my vote. How great for Rob. He doesn’t even need to sell them on the idea of aligning with him because people are walking up to him and telling him they are on his side. Crazy Philip! Of course while all this is going on, Philip wants to know what the plan is. Rob pulls him aside and I immediately hit the pause button on my TV. “Tell me Boston Rob is smarter than this and he will NOT tell Philip the plan considering what happened at the last tribal council” I say to my husband. After some back and forth we both agree that Rob isn’t that dumb and won’t tell him what is up. Pressing Play and resuming the show. Rob tells Philip that the final vote isn’t decided yet but to trust him to know that what ever happens tonight, you are safe. He tells Phil that he will tap the shoulder of the person he wants him to vote for. He also tells him that just know, however crazy this TC turns out to be, it’s for the long-term interest of the tribe and he (Philip) is totally safe tonight. Brilliant move! We get to TC and everything falls perfectly into place for Rob. Kristina thinks she is going home possibly so she plays her idol, Rob tells Philip to vote for Kristina (which he does) and Rob holds true to his word that Philip is safe, and the 4 alliance members are able to blindside Matt (and Andrea for that matter.) Other than Parvati, Cirie, and Natalie convincing Eric to give up his immunity necklace to Natalie, this may have been one of the best plays I’ve seen at tribal. It may be better because the girls came off looking like bitches where Rob is still coming out smelling like a rose…except to Andrea.
I wonder if the only thing that may come back to bite Rob is the RI factor. Did he think about sending a young, strong, pissed off man to RI with the very real possibility that he could dominate over there and come back in the game? That’s the one element of the game, Rob doesn’t have a plan for because it is all new to him. This is where RI will become so interesting because blindsides this early on in the game could hurt you if that person comes back. Whereas before, they were gone never to come back so who cares. Guess we’ll have to wait and see. But as of right now, Rob is in full control of his tribe. But if they don’t start winning some challenges, he won’t matter because he won’t have the numbers.
Team Russell vs Team Man Sweater
For a tribe that has been winning every challenge, they are the most unknown group to me. Other than Ralph, Russell, and Mike, there really isn’t anyone else we have gotten know very well yet. We got a little more with Stephanie and Krista but not much.
I said it from the beginning that I don’t think Russell is long for this game. Other than the dim wits Stephanie and Krista, NO ONE on his tribe wants him around and the first chance they get, they are going to vote him out. However, if they keep winning challenges, it’s a whole other story! And that is where Russell can get dangerous. He’s got Stephanie under his wing and I’m not about Krista’s motives yet (maybe she is playing him) but from a surface level, she looks to be aligning with him. Russell has managed to get to the end 2 times even without the majority of people on his side. But he did have some help…the immunity idol. Russell may have the clue, but Ralph has the idol. The best part is, he wasn’t even looking for it!!! He was picking up rocks for whatever reason and happened to stumble on the idol!! I’ll say this again too…weren’t the idols supposed to be more difficult to find due to the “Russell Factor?” Both Kristina and Ralph found idols without clues and Ralph wasn’t even looking! Anyway, Russell has no idol and his tribe is on to him and his antics. Russell, like Rob, knows what’s up having played multiple times. So Russell knew there would be a clue in the fishing gear they won. He was right and he snagged it. The problem is, Ralph saw him do it and proceeded to tell the rest of the tribe. When Russell went off with Steph and Krista to read the clue, Mike and Ralph followed him and confronted him about it. Ralph directly asked him if he had the clue and Russell said no (shocker.) They don’t believe him and since the clue was in the group reward, they think the group should see the clue because it belongs to all of them. Russell tells him that isn’t how the game is played and we get the typical “you are either with me or against me” and “I don’t like how you’re coming at me.” Looks like Russell hasn’t learned anything.
Here’s what I think about that confrontation. First, Russell is 100% right. This is Survivor dude. If I find a clue to an idol, I am under no obligation to share it with you. Remember the motto? Outwit, outlast, outplay? How do I do that if I am sharing information that could save me? Especially someone like Russell who is already on the chopping block. Again, have you people not seen this show before? God that drives me nuts. If Ralph wants to use that logic, then shouldn’t he share the idol he found with the tribe? Just like Russell found the clue in the tribe’s reward, Ralph found the idol at the tribe’s camp. That’s another thing that drives me nuts about some people in this game. You can be deceitful about something but you call it strategy when you do it (which it is.) But if someone else makes a deceitful move, it’s untrustworthy and that person is a scum ball. Huh? Granted Russell has mad some pretty questionable moves that has sky-rocketed his unlikability and he has set a precedent for being an asshole. But being a jerk is different from being untrustworthy. If you look at Russell’s alliances in the past..Natalie, Parvati…he was very open and honest with them. He never lied to them and he trusted them and they trusted him (kind of.) But he never strayed from that alliance. He only messed with and lied to the people he didn’t trust or need. Believe me, I am NOT sticking up for Russell Hantz. He’s a douchebag with a capital D. But people are being hypocritical for saying that when Russell makes a strategic move, he’s a jerk but when other people do it, it’s just plain strategy. Boston Rob already turned on one of his alliance-mates. But you don’t see anyone ready to call him the worst guy ever (except for maybe Andrea.) The difference is, Rob is much smarter about it because he knows how to play the social game. Something Russell has never and probably will never, figure out how to do.
Next Week on Survivor…
So we finally get a RI showdown. I wonder what part of the show, this will happen? I always like TC being the end of the show so I don’t think the RI showdown will be at the end. My guess would be sometime after we see the reward/immunity challenge. And can I just say that I love the fact that the challenges are now combined into one thus giving more time to see the camp life dynamic. I guess it can be a good and bad thing. If you have interesting people, it’s awesome to see all that footage. But if the people suck, that gives more airtime to boring people. In any case, I like it. I would rather see more time with the cast than with the challenges anyway.
My guess for who wins at RI? It’s hard to tell. If it’s a straight physical challenge, I would have to go with Matt. And not because he’s a guy. I just think he is physically stronger than Francesca. If it were Matt vs. Julie, it’s a toss-up. If it’s a mental challenge, it looks even but I have to give the edge to Francesca. It’s hard to say because I have no idea what type of “duel” they are going to have. It could be fire making. It could be swimming. It could be standing on one foot the longest. Who knows. No matter what, I am giving the slight edge to Matt only because he was so blindsided and therefore pissed that I think his drive and determination to stay in the game will propel him to victory.