After two somewhat weaker episodes for the past two weeks, we have another great episodes. Final seven episodes are usually always great (unless there’s a pagonging from an alliance of five going on). This one didn’t disappoint. For the first time in a few weeks I really had no idea of who was going to be voted out.
An interesting thing happened at Redemption Island this week. There’s always an ongoing debate about whether it’s cheating to copy your neighbor’s puzzle during challenges. Well, it is cheating in real life, but not on Survivor, as no rule is against it (and if it was against the rules you can be sure Jeff Probst wouldn’t let the contestants do it. Do I think it should be considered as cheating? Yes. But blame the game, not the player when it happens.
However, this week, what we saw was not just cheating, but Laura Morett using that loophole not to win, but to help Tina Wesson win. At first I was a bit confused as to why she did that. Tina was one of the people who originally betrayed her when she was first voted out, but then I quickly realized that she wasn’t helping Tina as much as making sure Vytas Baskauskas loses as he’s a much bigger threat to win challenges in redemption arena. So yeah, even if I was kinda hoping Vytas survives another day, kuddos to Laura for that move.
Now we that being said, none of them as a chance to make it to the end if they return to the game, which once again proves the pointlessness of redemption island. No one reentering the game has a chance to win, unless they go on an immunity run.
– Caleb Bankston sent to Redemption Island: I want to say “poor Caleb.” He was so likable that he had every chance to win if he made it to the end, which means that he had no chance to make it to the end unless he takes the game into his own hands. We all thought he would when he got Brad voted out, but after that he took the back seat for too much too long. Sure, in his mind there was no reason not to just stay in his alliance for as long as possible, but when you’re not the head of that alliance, it can play against you. To his credit, Hayden and him did try to take the game into their own hands this week. Unfortunately, it backfired when Ciera flipped on them. Poor Caleb, let’s not forget that one of the main reasons why he took Brad out was to protect Ciera. However, once again, props to them for trying to turn everyone against Ciera when their plan got messed up, but it was too late. Even if Tyson and Gervase had no intention to vote Hayden and Caleb out just yet, that little event reminded them how much of a threat they could be, especially Caleb because he’s so likable.
– Ciera Eastin: Oh Ciera, you little idiot. Last week, I wasn’t sure whether voting out her own mom was a good or a bad idea (it seemed a bit unnecessary to me to do it the way she did, especially writing her name down) but this week she ruined every chance she had to win the game. Why sacrifice your own mom one week to show how much a part of your alliance you are, only to blow it the following week? I guess in her mind she thought that Caleb and Hayden were betraying the alliance. That’s my only logical explanation. Ciera knows that only three people go to the end right, not six? How exactly does this think she has a bigger chance to win next to two veterans? By playing the “I’m a teen mom first time player against those seasoned contestants at final tribal?” Probably. Except that it won’t work. By betraying Caleb and Hayden the way she did, she lost their vote, Katie’s, Tina’s and I don’t think that Aras and Vytas care much for her. On the other hand had she stayed with Caleb, Hayden and Katie and took control of the game, she would have gained respect from a lot of people and possible would have won had she made it to the end. Now, she’s just probably the next to go. Lame. And for that stupid move that basically handed the million dollar to either Tyson or Gervase (or Monica?) she wins this week’s don’t-let-that-fool-you award.
– Gervase Peterson: Strange how Gervase is as much in charge of the game as Tyson is right now, and yet, they never seem to show him under that light. Not sure why really. He’s just presented as Tyson’s sidekick, while he’s clearly more than just that. For example, when Aras was ousted and Tyson and Gervase took control of the game, it was a much bigger move for Gervase than it was for Tyson, yet it was not really presented that way. I guess this is one of those things with the editing. Gervase will probably make it to the end, but fall short and finish second or third. He’s getting that edit now, no matter what he actually did on the island. I want to comment here a little about the decision to sit the challenge out for food. There’s always a debate whether contestants should do it or not. The main argument is that this late in the game, you always try to win immunity. Always. Mmm… I’d agree most of the times, but in Gervase’s situation for example, he knew that he was not going home no matter what, also he knew he was not going to win that challenge, so why not sit it out for food. It doesn’t always work though. Ciera’s sitting out, despite having no chance to win it sent the wrong message.
– Hayden Moss: Not much more to add from what I wrote in Caleb’s paragraph. Kuddos to him to try to take control of the game and not just coast until as far as possible. It really blows that it failed because of Ciera’s stupid move.
– Katie Collins: Nothing to say about her this week, except that with this whole thing, she got the target off her back for a little longer. But she shouldn’t fool herself, she has too many friends (and her mom) in the jury, nobody will let her make it to the end.
– Monica Culpepper: Interesting edit that Monica is getting. Nobody seems to care for her, nobody really seems to respect her, but she’s still around, and no one seems to want to target her. On top of that, she keeps on winning immunity. It really seems that she’s gonna make it to the end. Now, will she be a goat there (my first thoughts when she started being edited this way) or can she pull a Fabio? I’m starting to wonder. She could be depicted in a much more negative way (to make her a full fledge goat in the storyline of this season), but she’s not.
– Tyson Apostol: I’m still not too sure if it was a smart move or not for Tyson to sit out the challenge. I guess it was as he wasn’t targeted by anyone. And in any case, it was an hilarious move. I have the feeling that for some reason, Tyson is actually as funny this season as he was in the Tocantins (and that’s most likely the reason people didn’t feel threatened by him until recently). Sad, the edit doesn’t show more or that. Although to be honest, we had quite a few gems this episode. First his comments during the “feast” and also him emptying his bag during tribal council. Also, great game play this week too. When Ciera ratted Caleb and Hayden out, Tyson didn’t freak out – that’s the experience showing here – and he managed the situation perfectly. After all, what happened afterwards was what he tried to make happen (Caleb, Hayden and Katie vote Ciera, and they all vote Caleb). The only one who “messed up” was him as he wasted his idol. To be honest, in his situation, I would have done the same thing. There was definitely something fishy going on and while Ciera kinda shown her real allegiance when she decided to sit out the challenge, she also has proven to be a great liar, so sure, Tyson wasted his idol, but honestly, it was the right moment to play it. Better safe than sorry and all that.
Next week on Survivor:
Will Hayden succeed in having everyone gang up on Tyson? Apparently, even Gervase is interested… Or not… Or Gervase is pretending to be interested to blindside Hayden more easily.
Next person voted out:
Hayden is gone next week. If he wins immunity, it’s a toss up between Katie and Ciera.
Tyson for the win. Although Monica could pull a Fabio from out of nowhere. Gervase is in theory in a position as good as Tyson’s, but his edit is definitely not the one of a winner.
You want to read more about Survivor? You should read those fine people’s blogs:
- Super Jude’s blog. One of the best Survivor bloggers out there.
- Rob has a website, a podcast and an amazing know-it-alls analysis.
- Jeff Pitman’s True Dork Times is a must read every week.
- Stephen Fishbach’s blog too (now with illustrations by Erik Reichenbach)
- Dalton Ross’s recap on EW is much much more than just a recap.
- more to come… or not…