Before I get into discussion about tonight’s episode, there’s something I need to discuss. Some of you may have read stories in the mainstream or social media about Brooke, Flick and El receiving threats and abuse. You may even have come across some of this abuse yourself. My first reaction upon reading that this has occurred was to defend the trio and their actions and the way they’ve played the game. But that bullshit is not really what the problem is here. The problem here is not what they’ve done, or how it may have been perceived by some, or if the editing is to blame. So my response is not to defend the women, but to condemn the dickheads out there that do this shit. This sort of abuse is NEVER appropriate. Now I know that across the fifty odd thousand words I’ve written about this season so far I’ve made my fair share of judgements about our contestants, but this shit is on another level. Anyone who hurls this type of abhorrent, disrespectful, despicable and downright vile trash at people, particularly women, is a fucking tool. Especially if done via the relative anonymity of the internet. Go fuck yourself wankers, #IStandWithFlickBrookeandEl.
If you’re yet to read my analysis of the last episode, there’s no need to be disappointed in yourself like Lee, you can catch up here.
I’m sure you’re just as disappointed in how this episode played out as I am so I won’t spend any more time bitching about how boring it was, and how boring our top seven are. Instead let’s be positive and look to the future and where we think each of our seven need to position themselves to make it to the end.
Tonight saw many of our players finally come to the realisation that winning the game will require you to eventually vote out a friend. We even saw a number of them start thinking about who they might take to the end with them. With that in mind, I thought I might break down who each of the remaining seven can beat in the final two. Let’s check it out.
El can beat – Matt, Kristie, Sam, possibly Lee and Flick
Lee – Everyone except maybe Brooke (depending on the mood of the jury)
Flick – Sam, Matt, Kristie
Kristie – probably only Sam
Sam – Possibly Kristie but I don’t like his chances
Matt – Sam, Kristie, possibly Flick and El
Brooke – everyone except JL and maybe Lee
That is an interesting exercise. If you disagree with my assessments, let me know what you think in the comments below. Now let’s see how each player can use this info.
El and back
There’s a few people that El can beat if she gets there. Given that she can beat most people except Brooke, and Lee and Flick could still maybe beat her, then now is the time to grab Lee, scoop up Kristie and then find one more to smash the Brick. Who will that one be though, Sam or Matt? It seems at this stage there is absolutely no convincing Matt to split with Brick so that leaves Sam. I feel from what we’ve seen of Sam it’s not outside the realms of possibility that he could flip if Lee can show him how manipulative Brick has been.
Taking the LEEd?
Depending on how he gets there, the only person that Lee could not beat in a final two is possibly Brooke, and Brooke might only beat him if the jury respects manipulative gameplay. If the jury votes on sportsmanship or dare I say ‘mateship’ then Lee wins. He has done nothing wrong (so far), he just also hasn’t done anything very right.
Flick is a hard one to judge. She has played a better game than Lee and El, but just doesn’t seem as likeable as they are. She comes across to the audience as cold-blooded, but I’m not sure she comes across that way to those on island. She has been able to influence others so we know she has social skills. The times when she has come across as cutting or cold about anyone have only been pieces to camera or discussions with Brooke. Her move is the same move I discussed last week. Get rid of Lee and El with her current alliance, then use others to move against Brooke (easier said than done). Then all she needs to do is beat those other losers to final two.
Oh Kristie, doesn’t look like you’re in a good position here. The only person I believe you can beat in a final two is Sam, and there is still a possibity he could beat you. How to get there though? Seeing as Lee and El need you to take out Brick, I guess you need to side with them first. You’ll need to bring scamming Sam with you to do that. Then once Brooke and maybe Flick are gone you can use Matt to take out Lee and El, leaving you with Matt and Sam in a final three. Then you just need to make sure the final immunity challenge goes your way. You’ll then need to put in a solid enough performance at the final tribal, the one where the jury questions you. If you can string a sentence together and use some big words, then Sam shouldn’t be able to beat you unless the jury either really just doesn’t like you or really does like Sam.
As above only try not to say anything stupid in your final tribal. Appeal to the loyalty of your mates in Lee, Brooke, and Matt, and also talk up the times you actually tried to make a move. If you do win it will be by a whisker as there is no way Nick, JL or Sue are giving you their vote.
As above with Sam and Kristie, if you go against either of those then you should take the win. Just do what I say and you’ll get there. I mentioned that you could possibly beat Flick or El, so you’ve got options. It may be harder to get there with Flick or El too and a lot more work to beat them. You’re best move for now I’m afraid is to flip on Brick, because the longer they stay the less likely you’ll make it to a final two unless you are their goat. You wouldn’t be my first pick for goat though. That honour goes to Sam. So that is a risky play. You need to lay low and see what happens this coming tribal. If you don’t make any sudden movements your head should not be on the chopping block. Once either Brick or Lee and El are broken up the way ahead should be a little clearer.
Brookie has the odds
At this stage it’s Brooke’s game to lose. The only person that can beat her is Lee and even that depends on a jury that favours mateship and loyalty over strategy. As the person who is most likely to win however, she now has a huge target on her back. If she can keep her core four together, and somehow make it look like Flick is the bigger threat that may keep some heat off her. Also time to start a sub-alliance with Matt and Sam, let them know you’ll take them both to the final three if they can vote out Flick. You just then need to hope that you win the final immunity challenge. If the others are smart, they won’t take you to final to with them. If they do then it is a testament to your incredible social skills.
You Say Goodbye. I JL, oh…
You may have noticed that I put JL into Brooke’s list of who she can beat. This is because I wanted to talk about tonight’s move. The popular opinion, at least in the pies my finger is in, is that JL should have been kept as a number for flippers. While I would have loved to have seen JL stay as she is much more entertaining and prone to big moves than our remaining Survivors, as she is one of the few that could have beaten Brooke (if the jury respects an underdog story and a maker of big moves) it made perfect sense for Brooke to get rid of her now. Flick as well. They can clearly see that if they had kept her around, she would have been a number that any of the others could use to break up Brick and the core four. Had she been given a sniff I suspect that she would have kept playing hard right to the end. Unfortunately, things did not work out for her tonight. You may remember that in my analysis of the previous episode I was sure that tonight was going to be the night that JL would finally be used to smash the alliance. All she needed to do was sit back and let the others come to her. Matt and Sam think they are tight with Brick and Lee and El have realised much too late that to have any shot of winning they too need to do something about Brick. It’s a real shame. All of this is again testament to the quality of Brick’s game. Everyone thinks they are safe with Brick. Idiots.
I also need to point out that I didn’t mention Lee’s advantage in the above. It hasn’t been spoken of on screen for a long time. I can’t remember the last time someone mentioned it. I assume that people still realise that he has it, but I have no idea if anybody other than Lee knows what the advantage actually is. Obviously, with it, Lee can really shift the game in his favour. If he’ smart, he’ll realise that next tribal is the time to use it, so that he can break up the core four. If he’s not smart, it may be too late and he could go home with an advantage in his pocket. My guess as to what will actually happen is he’ll win the next immunity, not think to use it, then use it later and it won’t actually change things for him at all. Time will tell. Until next episode, I got nothing else for you, head back to camp.
– Russell Feathers