Here we are….season 27 of Survivor! Wow. So when I read the scenario for Blood vs. Water there were things I liked and things I didn’t. First, I love the idea of playing against your loved one and seeing what kind of dynamics unfold as a result of that. Especially when you’re on one team and your loved one is on another….what if the alliance you form doesn’t line up with your loved one? Then what? Then, I love that they’re voting someone out on the spot AND the vote isn’t hidden. I know people don’t like that because it isn’t fair and there is no rhyme or reason to the vote at this point and if I were the person who was voted out, I wouldn’t like it either. But since I’m not, I LOVE IT!!!! I like the idea of being given the opportunity to swap places with a loved one if they are in danger. I think that could put a huge twist into the alliances and direction of the game that could be very interesting to watch. What I hate…Redemption Island is back. Ugh. I HATE Redemption Island. I’m sorry but I’m a purist. When someone is voted out, they should be out of the game…period. No second chances, no additional opportunity to get back in the game. So I’m disappointed to hear that this is back.
As for the cast itself, there are some people I’m very happy to see…Tina, Aras, Gervase, Laura, and Tyson. There are some people I am so over seeing….Rupert and Candice. There are people I couldn’t remember…Kat and Monica. And there is one person I was disgusted to see…Colton. Seeing as how One World was arguably the worst season in Survivor history, I’m shocked to see three people return from that season. Especially Colton. It’s one thing to have controversial players in terms of their game play and decisions they make for making a very compelling season and great TV. It’s another to bring someone like Colton back who actually detracts from my viewing pleasure and is the reason the only season I never finished watching was One World. He’s a horrible human being and he’s a bad Survivor player. Why do I want to watch that again? I’m praying to God he gets voted out soon and doesn’t ruin the season…again.
The first twist right off the bat was the fact that this season is actually 39 1/2 days since the loved ones are dropped off to spend the night together before the game begins. The next morning everyone meets on the beach and the tribes are divided into loved ones and returning players. Awesome. Even more awesome, they each have to vote someone out right away and it’s not a hidden vote. The first two voted out are Candice (returning players) and Laura (Rupert’s wife – Loved Ones.) Once Probst offered the opportunity to switch positions, Rupert didn’t hesitate and took Laura’s spot and Laura joined the Returning Players tribe. BIG mistake Rupert. Like Tina said you just put your tribe in a weaker position and as a result, you’re on everyone’s shit list. I think Rupert regretted it the minute he did it. John, while very upset his wife was voted out, made the smart move and staying right where he was at.
Since the premiere is 90 minutes, we have a chance to get to know the Survivors a little better. First on the Loved Ones tribe, we learn Laura’s daughter Ciera was a teen mom and has a second little one with her new husband and how supportive her mom was with her but how difficult it was. We learn Aras’ brother Vytas was a teen heroin addict and went to jail for stealing from people to maintain his habit. And we learn that Brad Culpepper has trouble counting on two hands. The first two stories were much more compelling. We also learn from Brad that he doesn’t think a gay man equals a real man. When he talks about his 5 man alliance, he clarifies by saying they’re actually 4 guys and a gay guy. Seriously? I’m already looking forward to when he’s voted out. And don’t think that’s too far away because I don’t think they “guy” alliance is as tight as he thinks it is. If I have to go out and pick a Loved One this early that I really like, it’s Vytas. I love his story and I think you can tell right off the bat that he’s pretty smart and already playing a strong game. Many of the other Loved Ones seem to still be figuring out what the hell is going on while Vytas is already in “game on” mode. But I think he’s soft-spoken enough that he will be stealth and fly under the radar but making good decisions and reading and watching everyone. So he is definitely one to watch.
As for the Returning Players, we’re already treated to a Colton meltdown and telling everyone how he’s misunderstood and he’s a good person. In one of his confessionals, he talks about how he plans to show everyone a different side to Colton. A Colton 2.0 if you will. Well that was very short-lived because in the immunity challenge Kat is yelling at him to paddle (as is everyone else) and he turns to her and threatens to hit her with the paddle if she doesn’t shut up. And he’s back. Colton 2.0 lasted all of one day and from the previews for next week, he looks to be back with a vengeance. Great (she says with sarcasm.)
At the immunity challenge the Loved Ones are off to a HUGE lead. Mainly because Gervase is so out of shape Aras has to push and drag him through the water to get him through the challenge. Once they actually get Gervase in the boat, the can’t seem to figure out how paddle the boat straight back to the beach. And when Kat is the one trying to fix the situation, you know you’re in trouble. The thing I love most about puzzle challenges is that whenever someone steps up and says “I’m really good at puzzles” and CBS shows it, you know that person is going to get crushed in the puzzle challenge. In this season Laura and Tina say how good they are at puzzles and that they wouldn’t be surprised to see their daughters doing the puzzle part and how they are going to crush them. I love to see these two moms wanting to destroy their own daughters…LOL. And they were right because Katie and Ciera stepped up and said their moms are good at puzzles and so are they so they want to beat their moms. And while Katie and Ciera may be good at puzzles, they aren’t as good as their moms because even with that huge lead, Tina and Laura (and someone else) come roaring back and destroy them and win immunity. Talk about a beat down! But the funniest part had to be seeing Gervase jump up and down and get in the Loved Ones face about the victory. Dude, you were worse than useless in the challenge, you almost lost the challenge for your team! And you’re going to be the one to smack talk? Come on man. From one Philly person to another, act like you’ve been there, especially when you suck.
Before heading to tribal council, the Loved Ones are talking about who to vote out and they narrow it down to Marissa and Katie. Katie because they don’t think she’s strong and Marissa because her uncle acted like a jackass so it would send a message and they don’t think she brings much to the table. After some back and forth, Marissa gets voted out, stares down her tribe and heads to Redemption Island. Now I have heard and read some reports that people think the vote against Marissa was racist. I don’t like such heavy topics on a TV blog but since it was brought up I’m going to respond with my opinion. In no way do I think that vote was racist. If Tyson was the one being obnoxious and jumping around, maybe Rachel would be gone. I don’t think it had anything to do with the color of her skin and I think it’s really unfair to the contestants to make that huge assumption. I also heard a very popular podcast (that I love) where one of the pundits discussed how he thinks there is a problem with America because black women keep getting voted off Survivor early. Is he serious with that comment? How is it America’s fault? And I think to say that the reason some people are voted out are because the contestants are racist is way out of line. Over the course of 27 seasons have there been racist people on the show, I’m sure that there have been. But to make that kind of blanket statement about the Survivor contestants I think is very irresponsible and unfair to them. If you want to take issue with the idea that they are penalizing her for her uncle’s action, I would have no problem with that because I think that’s a bogus reason to vote her out. But I wish we would not jump to very serious conclusions about the reasons why someone was voted out unless there is concrete evidence that was the case and the people in question would have the chance to respond. And just to be VERY clear, if it turns out that someone on Survivor is voted out because of the color of their skin, I would be appalled by that. But enough about that. I’m upset Marissa is gone because I thought she could be a real player this season and very strong competitor so I’m hoping she does well at Redemption Island and finds a way to get back in the game. Although, it wouldn’t surprise me if Gervase took her place at RI because I have a feeling the reason she was voted out will be brought up.
So now I have to go out on a limb and pick my winner for the season. This is so hard. There are so many people with a chance to win. Since rookies seem to struggle against returning players, I’m not going with one of them. I have it down to two people….Laura and Aras. They are both strong, smart, and determined to win. But I think Laura has the personality that could potentially rub people the wrong way at some point and Aras seems to be someone everyone just likes and responds positively to that I’m going to go with Aras as the winner of Survivor Blood vs. Water. But if a rookie were to win, I would put my money on his brother Vytas. But I think Aras becomes the second repeat winner.
So what did you think of the premiere and all the twist and turns this season? And who do you think will win this season?