‘Survivor: One World’ – Going with Your Gut

First off, we apologize for the two-week hiatus.  We took, what we consider to be, a well-deserved holiday, and are just now getting back into the swing of things.  However, while we were gone Survivor: ONE WORLD! just kept going, including a shake-up at Big Mike’s Co-Ed Dorm that displaced its namesake.  With the Salami and Manano-hope tribes merging earlier than anyone could have or should have expected, the game, as Tarzan would say (and does repeatedly), is afoot, and head into this lastest episode with always-a-bridal-shop-owner-never-a-bride Kim at a crossroads: does she stick with her alliance of four with Chelsea, Troyzan and Jayzan, or maintain her gender ties with the original Salami tribe.  She straddled both sides for a couple Tribal Councils, convincing Jay and Troyzan to vote out the biggest of the Mikes, but now she must pick her side and reveal her true colors.

For Tarzan it’s all just fun and games, but for the rest of the players this is real.

Evidently it was Yom Kippur on the island, because both Jeff and the challenge producers seem to have the day off, as neither bothered to show up for this week’s reward challenge, the lamest in a series of lame backyard toss challenges in which Troyzan took it up on himself to fulfill Probst’s emcee responsibilities.  And we will say this for his hosting performance: stick to swimsuit model photography.  Also, don’t attempt to officiate or provide color commentary on any challenge ever again.  You’re banned.  Also, don’t try that ol’ cutting a hole in the bottom of the bag trick.  It’s gross.

Hey, did you know that Leif was in Twins???

Despite claims a few weeks back that there would be no more team challenges, the Survivors were once again split into teams for this challenge, as has happened every week since that initial guarantee (we guess Jeff meant there would be no more team challenges within that specific team challenge?).  And despite a mediocre performance by Troyzan – who was obviously distracted by his hosting duties – his team, thanks to Tarzan, wins the day, and celebrates in customary gross fashion.  We’ll let you decide what part of this is the worst.

For their triumph they earn what was perhaps the weakest reward thus far (we guess the rewards themselves are Jewish and took a personal day too): a trip to a remote beach where they sit in the sun and eat fish and coconuts.  So, basically, just like any other day at Big Mike’s Place.  But it was nice to see eliminated player Jonas stepping up and helping out while the normal chefs must have been attending Day of Atonement services.

Joke’s on those guys, though.  Jonas is a sushi chef, so cooking stuff is way out of his comfort zone.

However, to Tarzan’s credit, he seemed to be more than enjoying his first reward challenge.  Beggars can’t be choosers, we guess.

While Troyzan and Tarzan and the Tarzettes enjoy the reward of sitting on a beach, Kim begins to plot the next move, voting off Troyzan or Jay and keeping her “cross my heart and hope to die” sleepover promise to the ladies.  Chelsea, however, is uneasy about the move, as she doesn’t feel comfortable blindsiding people who have looked her in the eye and given her their trust.  Chelsea, trust us, you don’t have much to worry about.  We’re pretty sure they weren’t looking you in the eye.

We’re now happy to premiere a new feature on our Survivor recaps, Who Wore It Best?  This week, it’s Tarzan vs. Penelope Cruz.

Penelope Cruz or Tarzan?

Vote now and we’ll reveal the winner at the end of the post.

As if to make up for the lack of a reward in the reward challenge, this week’s Immunity Challenge bought back a classic, with the Survivors were cuffed to a water-filled bucket above their heads and placed on a narrow platform while Jeff teased them with gradually more enticing treats.  Tarzan, of course, stepped off immediately, not realizing you had to spend at least one second in the game to qualify for snack time.

Luckily for us, we were in the midst of the Passover fast, so we wouldn’t have been tempted by most of the dishes Jeff uncovered.  However, we have to admit, it would have been hard to say no to the beer and wings, and Jay, feeling very confident at this point in the game, listened to his stomach, not his head, and stepped off to devour the classic combo.  It was maybe the most delicious offering of the challenge, but possibly the costliest decision.  While Troyzan still had his hidden immunity Idol, Jay was now vulnerable and defenseless.  Sated, yes, but at what cost?

With Jay gone the winner was pretty much inconsequential, but the victory went to Chelsea, who convinced Leif to step off in order to not look like a threat, which made no sense because a) everyone was privy to the conversation and was aware Leif was doing it to avoid being a threat and b) he’s obviously not a threat.  In fact, that’s exactly why he’s still in the game, because he appears to pose no opposition to Kim’s master plan.  But he got cheeseburger sliders and potato chips for bowing out, so, in that respect, we have to agree that was the absolute right decision, because Leif winning Immunity would have been useless.

Is that true Chelsea???

Chelsea winning Immunity also served very little purpose, as her standing in the game was in little doubt.  However, securing the necklace did seem to give her the confidence to cold-bloodedly dispense with Jay and/or Troyzan, because with Immunity in her hands she basically did an about-face and said “Never mind how I felt before, fuck those guys, let’s go sun bathing.”

At this point it’s just left up to Kim to keep the master the plan under wraps and prevent Kat from pulling “a Kat,” which is defined as  “a completely idiotic move or statement.”  And here’s where Kim may have some trouble, the double-edged sword to her plan.  She’s managed to assemble a bunch of cronies to blindly follow her lead, but some or all of them are only doing so because they’re incapable of doing otherwise.  Which also means that their strategic gameplay is limited, and they’re prone to critical gaffes and misplays which may reveal and ruin Kim’s designs.  The unfortunate downside of leading a confederacy of dunces is that you’re leading a confederacy of dunces, and left to their own dunvices, they’re liable to fuck everything up.

And this almost happens, as Troyzan grows suspicious and wisely decides to play his heretofore unknown Idol.  He tips off Jay to his misgivings, but Jay, once again trusting his gut, deems it paranoia, and stays faithful to Kim and “the plan.”  And this, we have to admit, was really hard to watch.  We weren’t very fond of Jay at the beginning – perhaps his good looks reminded us too much of our own – but as we’ve noted prior he quickly grew on us, and demonstrated that he was possibly a player to watch in the game, with a good grasp on the social game, a strong physical presence and, obviously, those eerily familiar rakish good looks.  But he was guilty of putting too much trust in Kim, and, while we really can’t blame him, he should have paid better attention to the numbers, and pressured Kim to eliminate a girl instead of Jonas or Mike, just as a measure of good faith.  She still might have turned on him, but it would have gotten him a few days further, and sometimes that’s all it takes.

But, sometimes, by the time you realize your friend lied to you it’s too late.

Thus, amongst lots of furtive glances, stolen looks, poker faces, Tarzan’s catch phrase (seriously, can he please audit every season from here on out?) and a really confusing vote, it’s the end of the line for Jay and his tank top.

ALWAYS REMEMBER JAY, LOOSE LIPS THAT EAT CHICKEN WINGS SINK SHIPS.

Jay’s exit seemingly clears the way for Kim to Sherman’s march to the finals.  However, there is a downside to her dominance, and that is that she’s obviously (at least to us) the dominant player and with the early merge there’s lots of game left, and it would be shocking if there wasn’t some kind of attempted coup in the next few weeks.  The only question is whether or not her disciples, Kat, Sabrina, Christina, Alicia, will be smart or just cognizant enough to understand the numbers and make a power move.  Clearly, Troyzan will be gunning for Kim now, but if he she manages to dispatch him, it’ll be interesting to see if there are any other challenges to her throne (and how long Leif and Tarzan can manage to float through this game).

Which brings us to our A-B-C of the Week:

Always Be Calculating

In one respect, this means always be analyzing, planning and strategizing, but more literally it just means to keep an eye on the numbers, because they got away from Jay and Troyzan and it cost them.  Had they paid more attention to the math, or put more stock in it, things may have been different.  Now the number that Troyzan needs to worry about is one, because after the last Tribal Council he’s all alone.

Oh, and the winner of this week’s Who Wore It Best? is…Tarzan!  Because while Penelope Cruth undeniably looks better, Tarzan wore it better.   Not even close.

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Filed under Analysis, Century 21 Reality, Tribal Council

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