Thursday, May 6, 2010

May 6, 2010: Survivor Recap

I speculated at the end of my Survivor recap that we were bound to see some double eliminations coming up since there were still 8 contestants left and only 9 days to go. It took a lot less time than I anticipated, but I still don't agree with how the show has been marketed this season. There have been so many great moments, and almost all of them have been pre-emptively revealed during the previous week's commercials on CBS. Imagine how shocked you would have been tuning in tonight and finding out that there were going to be two Tribal Councils? Do they really think that someone was flipping around this week, and saw the commercial and said, "Well, I wasn't going to watch Survivor on Thursday, but since there's TWO Tribal Councils...count me in!" I doubt it.

But on to tonight's double platter of fun, which started off with the aftermath of last week's flip by Candice, which saw Amanda voted out. Back at camp, we saw Rupert ranting about Candice, calling her self-centered, greedy, and manipulative. Ok, let's break that down, shall we?

Self-Centered - Check. You kind of have to be if you want to have a hope of winning this game, or getting far, even. Asking yourself "what is the best move for me" is what every contestant's primary concern should be, at all times. Whether you do it or not, you still have to consider it.

Greedy - Check. Anyone who is playing this game is greedy. They're competing in an insanely difficult game in unbelievably difficult circumstances...for a million dollars. The motivation is the money for every contestant, and don't even try to give me that mumbo-jumbo about people doing it for the challenge and the experience (I'm talking to you, Coach). If you offered the same challenge without cameras and a million dollars, you would have exactly ZERO contestants.

Manipulative - WRONG! (I couldn't figure out how to type out the sound of the buzzer on Family Feud.) Candace has never done anything remotely manipulative in this game. She takes no initiative, and just follows. Hey lemming...look out for the cliff! Did I really pick her to win?
I loved the exchange between Rupert and Russell at the campfire. I can't recall another time where we've had a one-on-one conversation that required so much bleeping. Those two were trucker-mouths! It was neat to see arguably the Ultimate Survivor Bad Guy jawing with the Ultimate Survivor Good Guy. (if fans could vote, Rupert would always win) For a minute, as I watched two people in a jungle representing good and evil argue over a fire, I thought, "Wait a minute, Lost isn't on tonight!"

As they headed for the first Immunity challenge and I saw the water towers, I immediately knew which challenge it was. And if you don't think that makes me one of the all-time ultimate Survivor geeks, how about these voluntarily offered tidbits: a)I knew that Jeff would offer food as temptations, b) I knew that the perch was a new element for this challenge, c) I knew that Rupert competed in his season, and d) I knew that Parvati won it in her season. And I knew it all before Jeff said it. Pardon me, I have to go put masking tape on my glasses, now.
Good for Parvati on winning it again, but I really loved the twist where if nobody took the food that Jeff was offering, then he gave it to those who had already dropped out. There's your motivation to drop out first, like Sandra and Russell both did. And three people dropping out simultaneously for PB&J? Come on Jeff, you can do better than that! Remember when Heidi and Jenna got naked for chocolate and peanut butter in the Amazon?

And I loved the added element of Jeff reading the clue for the Hidden Immunity Idol in front of everyone at the end of the challenge, leading to a mad scramble back at camp, where the unlikeliest of suspects ended up with the Idol. Come on Sandra, did you really think that the 'burning bush' part of the clue meant that the bush would be on fire? Somehow, I truly believe that you did.

Russell was fixated on the bulge in Rupert's pants...wait a minute, let me re-phrase that...Rupert had a big lump in his pants that Russell couldn't take his eyes off of...hold on, I don't think that's much better...Rupert had something in his pants that Russell wanted, and every time Russell thought about how many times he had held one of those in his hands...oh never mind! Rupert didn't have an idol, and Russell thought he did!

At Tribal Council, the jury appeared to have all agreed to wear black uniforms for some reason, and Amanda still looked like she was about to cry at any moment. I wonder if the Final Tribal Council will be any better for her now that she gets to ask the question instead of answer it, or if she'll still stumble all over her words and sound like a doofus.

Voting Candice off was a dumb move for the villains. Solely because they asked her in, then cut her any chance they had of her jury vote went out the window. At least with Colby and Rupert, you knew they hated you already. Why piss off a potential jury vote? At least let them think you're a team before you cut their throat. Basic Survivor Strategy.

But then in her confessional, Candice declared that she was "thrown under the bus", which you regular readers will identify as one of my three Immediate Disqualification terms. Sorry, Candice.

I won't break down the second immunity challenge, except to say that I was impressed with Russell and how that little Hobbit flew up the wall without the pegs. But winning that challenge did something to Russell, as he inexplicably tried to pit the other two members of his 3-person alliance against each other...with seven people still left! As Parvati and Danielle put it, it just didn't make any sense.
Of course Danielle and Parvati talked to each other and figured out what he was doing, but by then, Russell had transformed into Johnny Threats-A-Lot and ran around threatening everyone that if they didn't do what he wanted, they were going to be voted out next. Pretty easy to say that when you are wearing the Immunity Necklace. I wonder if he would have been so brazen if he wasn't safe from this vote.
And speaking of the vote, what a Tribal Council that was! Danielle refused to set her ego aside, and piped up when she heard that Russell and Parvati were running things, then clarified that she and Parvati were exceptionaly close, which is just what Russell wanted. Even though he lied about what he said happened, he stayed calm and believable, while she ranted and cried and seemed not very trustworthy. The look on Jerri's face at what Danielle said sealed her fate.

And as she sat there at Tribal Council trying to save herself, and crying, I realized after all of these episodes, who Danielle reminded me of.

Does anyone have a sugar cube?

And on that note, good readers, I will see you all next week for the next chapter in "Russell and Parvati: The Ugly Breakup."

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