Episode 15 – ‘Get a Grip on that Pole’ OR ‘Show Us Your Pink Bits’

I’m not going to beg you, but if you want to check out my analysis of episode 14 before you dive into episode 15, you can do that here.

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It really was very nice of J-LaP to give me a shout-out tonight, thanks brother
Merge is here and in the words of Robert Pollard “now the fun begins”. Not that we haven’t been having fun for the past 33 days, but as we all know, the games shifts post-merge and tonight was as good an indication as any of how crazy things can get once it becomes even more of an individual game. And with a thirteen person tribe (the largest in Survivor history) things are even a little crazier than usual. What better place to start our discussion than with Sam’s ‘good kid’, Conner.

Fall-out Boy (think about it, that works on so many levels, I’m quite proud of myself)

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Barely hanging in there…
Conner was loved by many and in turns made us both smile and cringe. His mixture of youthful naivety, and puppy-dog playfulness, and earnestness in the face of unfamiliarity brought him many a fan. Unfortunately, while he was the New Kid On The Block, he did not have The Right Stuff….baby. His failure to pull together any sort of alliance in this episode saw him come undone. We all know however that this wasn’t the only failing that led to his downfall. Aside from turning on Bianca back in episode 2 (had he not done that Saanapu would have been very different) I would argue that his exploits in episode 5 when he tried to turn the tables on Flick and call some people out on their duplicities really sowed the seeds for his departure tonight. He never really recovered any ground in the eyes of the original Pu, and while I don’t think they necessarily were out for revenge, they knew he was volatile and his unpredictability could destroy their games. He struggled to find his feet after being exiled to Vavau in episode 5, finally finding what looked to be a solid two with Kate in episode 14 (who should forget that trust ceremony, nawww). Well that was over before the honeymoon had even begun! We didn’t see either of the newlyweds have a family meeting and try and balance the family budget. Conner’s crucifixion isn’t all his own baby-jesus faced fault.

What the Hell Vavau?

So let me get this straight, Sue, Conner, Kate and Kristie voted Matt, Nick, Kylie and Conner respectively? And Saanapu voted exactly to their suggested five-four split? So much for Kate’s “We need to get the good guys together, AVENGERS ASSEMBLE!” What were Vavau hoping to gain from voting individually? We saw a glimmer of game in Sue when she said something like ‘I’m not happy about it and I’m going to do something about it’, I was thinking ‘about time, what magic are we going to see from Nanna’, and she didn’t do shit. Very disappointing. How they voted aside, we didn’t really see them scramble at all. All we saw was Conner try and talk to Sam. He couldn’t do that the way he wanted to, then effectively just said ‘oh well’ and shrugged his shoulders. Maybe he was coming down after all that sugar. Given he didn’t get the pre-tribal conversations he was hoping for I thought that we’d at least see a last ditch effort from him to blow shit up at tribal and drop some truth bombs about Nick (which we expect would have backfired anyway given he has an idol), but he just lay down, even through a J-LaP grilling. J-LaP gave him every opportunity to stir shit up and out Nick (I would even argue J-LaP went too far with it), but he just seemed, much like the jesus he apparently resembles, like a dead man walking.

Will the Real Slim Shady Please Stand Up

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“socially, strategically, economically, spiritually”…there’s no denying the man can rap.
What were these guys doing for 3 days after the merge that they didn’t get a sense of where the tensions lay in Saanapu? They could have and should have been spending time figuring out where they could drive a wedge or split a seam or plant a seed or frack the Murray-Darling basin that is Saanapu. I was pretty confident that once we hit the merge we would see a coup against Nick. We’ve seen plenty of times in Survivor when a tribe hasn’t been to tribal for a while, they almost relish being able to finally do so, just so that they can get the person out who has been shitting them for so long. Nick is that person. Earlier in the episode when he kind of started calling the shots (more on this in a bit) I thought to myself ‘wow, what has he done to be able to turn things around for and really ingratiate himself into this tribe’. Shortly after that we got about three or four snippets of conversation or pieces to camera with Saanapuans revealing they think he is a snake and want him gone. Why then did they go for Conner? I guess Conner has proven himself to be flaky, whereas Nick on the other hand, actually hasn’t shown anything concrete to them in terms of flakiness. Yeah he comes off as shady, but unlike C-dog he hasn’t actually done anything shady. I mentioned above that he was calling the shots so to speak, but that was only after asking The Pu what they wanted to do. He then just told them how to do it.

Good Game

So far I’ve talked a lot about the shite gameplay this episode, but did we see anything good? Hmmm, the strongest player that comes to mind is Brooke. Brooke is someone that has slowly but surely worked her way into a solid position in this game over the last couple of weeks. Earlier this week I was fortunate enough to be invited to contribute to my favourite Australian Survivor podcast to discuss the season thus far (you can listen on Soundcloud and iTunes) and Brooke was certainly someone who was brought up as a possible end game player in that discussion. This was confirmed this episode when not only did she win immunity, we saw her involved in all of the major conversations, either there organically because she had grown alliances with the right people, or inserting herself into conversations that weren’t hers to be in to make sure shit didn’t go awry (possibly the most awkward conversation we’ve seen so far). Gold star for robot girl (to bastardise Robert Pollard).

Where to from here?

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The happy family?
With twelve people left in the game I am not going to run through possible moves for every player. As I mentioned in my analysis of the previous episode the best thing for anyone to do so early in the post-merge and with so many players in the game, is to lay low and let the tall poppies stick their necks out (#analogymashup #beenlisteningtoandrewtoomuch). Admittedly, there has been a show of solidarity from Saanapu in the first vote, but surely, the cracks have to appear eventually. As viewers we can see those Saanapu crack, I’d imagine that Vavau will see those Saanapu cracks before too long. If they don’t become visible by themselves, a pointed question or two from Sue will elucidate them.

Other Points of Interest

Nick has an idol. Lee has an advantage. How these came about was interesting. We had the classic Survivor auction. A Survivor staple. Though I’ve never seen it with 13 players before. Usually in these cases we see players fall over themselves to try and get the advantage/s from the auction. Tonight was the opposite. Lee’s advantage was probably the cheapest auction advantage in Survivor history at $80. Nick really protested upon discovering what he had bought was an advantage. I guess it comes down to where in the season the auction is. At this stage, people don’t wan’t to be seen to have an advantage because they don’t want to have targets on their backs. In the past when we’ve seen auctions and they have been later in the game, advantages are more advantageous, you need something to get you through just one more tribal. Regardless, Nick’s advantage is an idol clue and he really wastes no time in finding that idol. Lee catches him looking and Nick is left with no choice but to involve Lee in the looking. At this point I wondered if maybe Nick thought both their advantages were clues to the same idol and they had to race to get it. After finding it he shares it with Lee. I’m not convinced that this was a good move. To me it looked like he had an opportunity to pocket it without Lee knowing. He could then have kept looking and Lee could back up his story that he hadn’t found it. He could have continued to share the clue with his alliance (gaining their trust) and kept looking. I’m not sure how long one could keep this up for though. Either way, he’s got an idol, I can’t wait to see how he uses (or misuses) it. I’m sure he said he was going to share it with his alliance but I don’t think I actually saw him tell anyone but Lee he had it. Maybe I missed a scene, you can correct me in the comments below.

Lee’s advantage is a little more interesting in that it is not so common. Though we’ve seen this advantage in previous seasons, I think we’re yet to see it used effectively. Unfortunately with it being in Lee’s hands, it looks like we may not see that this season either. I’d be happy to be proven wrong and to watch Lee use it to bowl a maiden over. I’m hoping that maiden is Flick.

Pink bracelets. Actually I think the less said about that the better.

Now that Saanapu has Conner out of their system I’m really interested to see how the individual game shakes down and maybe see what some of these sleeper players in Lee, El, and JL, and even Matt can do. Sammy’s a fuggin’ write off. I got nothing else for you, head back to camp.

– Russell Feathers

Episode 16 analysis here!

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Episode 12 – ‘Hatchet Job’ OR ‘Can I Axe You For a Favour?’

If you are yet to read the analysis of the last episode, please head here to catch up.

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Our crayons get a little less eclectic 😪
I feel like discussion tonight is going to be rather brief. Why? Because tonight Phistie showed us how to perfectly play an idol. We also got a great lesson in what not to do from Vavau. Let’s get into it.

Phinders Keepers

There really is no better way to play an idol than what we witnessed from Phistie tonight. Firstly, the lead up play from Phoebe. Recognising just how important it was to find out who Vavau was voting against. Actually, let’s go back a step. Even before making the move to figure out who Vavau was voting against, there is the implicit decision to not try to figure out a way to flip the numbers. Arguably, if Phistie had decided to try and find another ally or two, maybe try to stick with Kate, to flip on the others, then things would have been a whole lot more complicated for everyone. Phistie would have too many other things to have to rely on and could end up playing the idol against the wrong person or even not playing it at all. So, it was the lack of a move, the deciding to just lie down and play dead that opened the trap, then Phoebe baited it. I’ve always been a big fan of the ‘ask-someone-to-tell-you-when-you-are-going-to-be-voted-out’ move. I can’t think of a good reason not to use it (comments anyone?). If I were on Survivor as soon as I got somewhat close with someone I would be using that move as a matter of course. Even though it did seem somewhat disingenuous coming from Phoebe at the time (to me) as we hadn’t seen her trying to bond with Conner before this, you can’t deny that it worked. Conner, Conner, Conner…

Then You Go & Spoil It All By Saying Something Stupid Like “We’re Voting You”

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A worthy opportunity to recycle this one…
Earlier in the episode I was so proud of Conner for taking the opportunity to get close to Kate and console her in her time of being overwhelmed by emotions. Not that I’m necessarily saying that it was a ‘move’, but it was exactly what he needed to be doing to solidify his place within the tribe. It’s clear that Kate follows her heart, and so being a shoulder to cry on and an ear to cry to is the way to earn Kate’s loyalty. Then to go and tell Phoebe that the votes are coming her way? Dude, c’mon! Unless you want her loyalty or are looking at having an alliance with her or using it to flip the numbers, keep it to yourself. Otherwise the only reason why you’re doing it is to keep your own conscience clear. Giving away information can always result in biting you in the arse. We’ve seen it many times this season (“Hey Roh, do you guys have an idol?” “Yeah”) and in many other seasons. Conner, you are clearly a nice guy but if what you want to do is get rid of Phoebe, that wasn’t the way you go about it. And as for the rest of you yellow yokels…

Burning Down The House

What did you guys have against splitting the votes? Was it just that you wanted Kristie on your side when you get to the merge? Well you’ve got to get to the merge first. Even that (very weak) justification aside, when you’ve made it so clear that you’re voting for one person then you give them an opportunity to do something with that information. I expected at least one of the four to say to someone, “this is too easy, what if they have an idol?”. If you’ve got Phistie thinking completely one way, then you have an obligation to use that to your advantage. Perhaps I’m just upset that C-bomb was voted out tonight. This is on every one of you old Vavau.

Hornswaggling Heroines

Of course, it’s not enough to just have one person tell you that the vote is coming your way, you need something to substantiate that info. Phistie played it perfectly. Firstly, realising exactly this, that they need a way to confirm Conner’s leak. Then, Phoebe
leaving the rest of the tribe alone so that they had a chance to talk to Kristie, it was just perfect. And the way that they played it when they reunited with the tribe, the acting was sublime, Gold Logie deserving (wait, since when have people received gold Logies because they could act?)! And to keep straight faces right to the end. It really was beautiful to behold. I don’t think I’ve seen acting this good on Survivor before, and I’ve watched more than my fair share of episodes.

🎤Vere Do Ve Go Va-vau? (how the stuttering German sings along to Guns ‘n’ Roses)

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A small crack in the facade from Kristie, smirk incoming.
Well Phistie are still there and they don’t have an idol. Assuming there isn’t a merge or tribe swap next episode, how can they stay alive? Well we saw in the previews for the next ep that Phoebe may try throwing Kristie under the bus, I’m not necessarily opposed to this, but let’s break it down. There’s only five in the tribe, that means you need two people with you to make it through. If you’re Phoebe, you’d like to think Kristie is one of those, that leaves you with only one more and you’ve got your Jimi Hendrix Experience (power trio). I’m not convinced though that Kristie is 100% with Phoebe, and it seems neither is Phoebe. Many episodes ago, pre tribe swap even, we had a confessional from Kristie saying that she didn’t trust Phoebe. Of course Phoebe doesn’t know about the confessional, but there certainly seems to be something in Phoebe that isn’t quite convinced of where Kristie head is at. When Phistie met on the beach in this episode there seemed to be both apprehension on the part of Kristie to tell Phoebe what the rest of Vavau had said, and also, once she did pass on that info, Phoebe had to ask Kristie to say explicitly that they would vote together. I would have thought if they really were tight, that would go unsaid. I should point out here that in the past I have warned Phoebe against coming across as the mastermind and suggesting that she needs to spend more time asking her tribemates and allies what they want to do rather than tell them. Well Phoebe must have been reading my shit because tonight she did just that, asking Kristie who to vote off rather than telling her. Well done Phoebs.

Now that Phistie has turned against Craig, the one person who I believe that Kate probably had the most trust in, I can’t see the return of soPhistieKate.

Anyway, if Phoebe has concerns about Kristie, then she may need to let her go eventually, I’m not sure now is the right time. I guess there is a possibility that she could convince the rest of the tribe that Kristie is the mastermind and that she must go, that is not outside the realms of Phoebe’s capability, but then she needs to get at least two people to believe that rather than one. And in this episode Kristie hasn’t exactly been loyal to Vavau, she gratefully accepted their trust in her and wish to keep her around and then threw it back in their faces. If Phistie split up they both have a hard road ahead. My suggestion would be, if either of them want to split, five is not the number to do it at, wait until there’s only four left (if that ever happens), it’s too hard to get another two to join you. So if Phistie do stay together what do they do? We saw in the last episode that they were tight with Kate, that seemed to be a one vote alliance though, just to get Andrew off. Now that Phistie has turned against Craig, the one person who I believe that Kate probably had the most trust in, I can’t see the return of soPhistieKate. I guess that leaves Sue and Conner.

Sue

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“Anyone got some coat-tails?” “Don’t ask me”
Arguably the biggest loser in tonight’s tribal (other than C-bomb) was Sue. Craig seemed to be her biggest ally in the game and now she’s left with Mr. Loose-Lips and Kate. Neither of whom have shown themselves to be reliable in terms of keeping their mouth shut, or keeping emotion out of their decisions. At least they could be a three to get through the next tribal with. And though Kate has been wishy washy, I don’t get the feeling she would flip on Sue, so Sue cold definitely work with that. I think we’ll really see Sue start to step up her game now. Could she be swayed by Phistie? That’s possible, if that’s going to get her through the next tribal, then take it. But as I said, if you can find a way to stick with Kate, I suspect that’s the better move long-term.

Conner

Conner on the other hand, well again, if he’s smart I think he’ll stick with Sue and Kate, I don’t see anything attractive for his game on team Phistie, unless he can find a way for them to become Dinosaur Jr and he, J. Mascis (the power trio that slays for a couple of records before J. Mascis unceremoniously fires the bassist (Phoebe?)). If Conner can find a way to do that, good on him, that’s a move that can get him further. Much like Lou Barlow though (the bassist that was fired, I may be getting a little too specific with my metaphors), Phoebe has the wherewithal to bounce back and create her own Sebadoh (Lou’s subsequent and arguably more powerful power trio than mid period Dinosaur Jr). Anyway, this particular freed pig aside, moving with Phistie is a do-able move for Conner. It’s impossible for me to say whether this particular move would get him further than aligning with Sue and Kate, your thoughts?

Bye Bye Pride

I can’t end this post without acknowledging the C-bomb, Craig. Though he may not have started as my favourite, he certainly showed in the last couple of episodes what a loveable character he was. He played incredibly hard physically, showing a tenacity we’d not witnessed on Survivor for some time, and also a very social game. He seemed to be down with everyone, a finger in every pie, and these were very sincere relationships. I got the impression he really connected with everyone he was involved with and showed them respect and care. Later C-bomb, hope we see you again.

Ok, that actually ended up being longer than expected from an episode that really didn’t have any twists or turns, and we didn’t even talk about The Pu. There was nothing there that I found interesting anyway, though I’m looking forward to them finally losing so we can see how all these subtle power shifts actually play out. Until tomorrow, I got nothing for you, head back to camp.

– Russell Feathers

 

Episode 13 analysis here!

Episode 11 – ‘Throwing Challenges’ OR ‘Throwing Challengers Under the Bus’

If you’re yet to read my analysis of the previous episode, head on over here.

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Now who’s swimming with the fishes?
Tribal number 10 is in the bag (dammit I could have used a Kat in the bag pun last night!) and we finally say goodbye, some would say sadly, others gleefully, to everybody’s favourite wolf in sheep’s clothing, Andy. So it seems only appropriate that we start discussions this evening by documenting his downfall.

Andrew, “not a flexible guy”

The fish has left the barrel. Though I for one have loved watching Andy since day one, thinking that he had the goods to make it all the way, but as many people much more knowledgable than little old me have said, “timing is everything in this game”, I think Andy even said it once this season. Appropriately, it was Andy’s number one target, Craig that hammered the last nail into his coffin. Did Andy have an opportunity to take Craig out first though? Before I continue I need to acknowledge that for the last 5 or 6 episodes I’ve been commenting that Andy should hold off on making his move. And it’s easy for me to say, after watching the episode, that he needed to make his move tonight. Unfortunately, he didn’t set himself up well to be able to make that move. Let’s start with what happened after the last council. Furious that his name had been written down, he decided to wage war on Kristie. Again, playing with his emotions and not with his head. There was a fantastic opportunity to talk to Kristie and Phoebe (Phistie) after the tribal when they went to the well. Notwithstanding what Old Vavau may have thought of this, ideally this could have been the start of finding a few new recruits to aid his cause. Instead, he chose to brag to camera.

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When he finally did approach Kristie it was too little too late. And what did he offer them as an alternative, Kate? Surely he could see that Kate was their number one ally in the tribe. There was no way Phistie would agree to get rid of Kate. Andy just hasn’t seemed to be playing the same game that he was playing before the tribe swap. Before the tribe swap we saw him talking to and being sociable with everyone on Vavau. Since the tribe swap, and even since Nick and Tegan left, we’ve seen a different Andy, one who only wants to associate with his alliance. Certainly he may have been sociable with the newcomers and we just didn’t see it. My point is that by not playing that social game with everyone that he used to play, he did not have the ability to sway the votes when he needed to. Of course the fact that he was not performing in challenges didn’t help. It almost looked like in that coconut throwing challenge, he was, er, throwing the challenge. So when you add this performance in the challenge to the fact that he doesn’t really have a lot of friends, loyalty is only valuable up to a point. This point. Which is exactly what Craig realised.

You Don’t Want to be on Craig’s List.

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Gesundheit
I am becoming more and more impressed with Craig. He’s fast becoming a favourite to make it close to the end. This was a great move for Craig for a number of reasons. Firstly, he got rid of his number one enemy, Andy, and he may not have even realised it. Even if he didn’t feel Andy was a threat to him yet, I’ve no doubt that he realised that he would be one to him later. Kate and Kristie however, probably don’t pose much of a threat at all (happy to be convinced otherwise in the comments below). By scooping up Kate, who has really been floating for a while, he may have found himself a little puppy to do his bidding later in the game. Again, I may be underestimating Kate. I must say that I was a little surprised that he didn’t let the others know about his decision to vote Andy. Not informing Conner I can understand, given Conner’s track record for starting crazy shit at tribal councils. I’d be interested to see what Sue thinks though. Sue has always said that she is loyal to her five, but Craig may have dented that by not trusting Sue with that information. Perhaps I’m wrong. Perhaps he did tell Sue and she just couldn’t bring herself to writing Andy’s name down. Even if he did tell her I suspect it wouldn’t have made much of a difference. I don’t think that she’s so loyal to Andy that she would have told Andy so that he could switch things, and even if she did, what could Andy actually have done? It seemed that Andy wouldn’t have had time to make a serious move against Craig, especially having not already done the leg work with Phistie or Kate. Craig on the other hand couldn’t have put in more legwork, both literally and figuratively. He has been an absolute mountain in those rope holding challenges, and over the last two episodes we have seen him have multiple, sincere conversations with everyone. Everyone. The work that he did last tribal with both Kate, and Phistie, while it hasn’t actually borne fruit for him, it is certainly blossoming. But where to for him for now?

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All of this time you could have been using it for toilet paper buddy…
It looks like he will be spending a lot of time looking for that idol in the nest episode and understandably so. Without an Andy shield there is potentially a target on his back now. I’m sure he is hoping that Phistie won’t flip on him now. If he is committed to working with them then I guess his only option is to move against Conner. I’m not so sure that he should commit himself to them though. I think that the longer they are around the more power they get, with only six people left in the tribe I would be trying to break up the soPhistieKate trio pronto. How he’s going to do this I’m not sure, and it’s not looking good with Phoebe having the idol.

Phighting Phit (no, this play on ‘f’ won’t end soon)

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“Laters…”
With Phoebe having the idol, and a seemingly solid alliance in Kate and Kristie, she’s gone from being on the bottom of Vavau to being in arguably the best position in Vavau and perhaps even the game right now. But who is her best path to the merge? The soPhistieKate three are a fantastic vehicle for Phoebe to make it to through the merge and all the way to the end. Kate for one seems like she has finally found her tribe in Phistie, and though she is a strong competitor in challenges and seems like a lovely person, she so far hasn’t shown us that she has the head for strategy or the stomach for big moves. I would argue that going against Kate in the final two would be perfect for Phoebe, who has a much better island story than Kate. Kristie seems to be riding this Phoebe thing for everything it’s worth, but given the confessional that we saw about three or four episodes ago, I’m not convinced that she wouldn’t flip on Phoebe if shown a better opportunity. It’s hard to tell. Phoebe may be able to strengthen this alliance with Kristie by giving her the idol, that would certainly show Kristie that Phoebe trusts her and is in her corner and may just win Kristie over 100%. Once soPhistieKate have made it through the merge, they can easily hook up with Lee and El and the game is theirs for the taking. Craig, Sue and Conner by contrast have little to look forward to at merge time.

Where to for Kate?

Lookout lady, if Craig, Sue and Conner see that you are in a trio with Phistie, then they may choose to disable that trio by taking you out. Keep getting close to Phistie, maybe they’ll share with you that they have an idol and this could keep you safe for another tribal. Stick with those two and hopefully you’ll make it through the merge.

Sue and Conner

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If I had a dollar for every time some chump said “dig deep” tonight…
The best that they can hope for now is to see that power now rests with soPhistieKate and make a move with them. For Sue, her best bet would be to make a move against Conner, and hope that Craig makes it through to the merge with her so she at least has a possible trio when added to JL (if she’s still there). For Conner, well I’m not so sure what he can cook up now, in terms of making it through one more tribal he can go with soPhistieKate and vote against whomever they want, beyond that, I can’t see him making it much further unless someone wants to take him under their wing as a goat, which means he might make it to the end but won’t win. I see little hope for him in this game. If you have any idea what possible path he could take to move further in this game please share it in the comments below. Good luck though little buddy.

Saanawho?

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🎤 “Saanapu, Saanapuuuuu, (now we are here) in Saanapuuuu” 🎤
I can’t finish up without at least mentioning that there is a whole other tribe that exists in this game. The Pu. As much as I’d love to see Vavau implode and be decimated before merge, I do miss my Pu. I’m very curious to see what sort of alliances and voting blocks are emerging over there and what other tricks Nick has up his sleeve (Matt isn’t the only magician over there). Until next time, I got nothing else for you, head back to camp.

– Russell Feathers

Episode 12 analysis here!

Episode 10 – ‘Dish Best Served Cold…’ OR ‘Humble Pie’

Want to check out the analysis of the previous episode before you continue? Do so here.

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Kat joins the ‘Overthrown Benevolent Dictators’ Club. Say hello to Kevin Rudd for me.
Another delicious episode served. Let’s go ahead and digest it. It looks like I’ll be writing the word ‘Phoebe’ a lot again tonight. Firstly, how great was Phoebe’s opening piece to camera, admitting that she had been stupid and blind not to see Kat’s backflip, eating a big old slice of humble pie. This was in stark contrast to Kat’s behavior tonight, which was the opposite of eating humble pie. That’s right, regurgitating conceited sandwich. She was just throwing that shit up left, right and centre. I haven’t witnessed so much bile since Stephen Fischbach’s #SevereGastrointestinalDistress. C’mon Kat, I must have said it at least three times already this season, when you are blinkered by revenge and emotions, you get blindsided. Obviously Kat hasn’t been listening to me. I guess she doesn’t have wifi on island. Now Phoebe has distanced herself from the sceptic projectiles Kat is spewing she at least seems in a slightly better position than at the end of last episode. Let’s breakdown just how she made it through yet another tribal.

Clueless, or Batgirl?

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WIth an idol in her hands she bedevils playthings… (No, we’re not off to a good start are we?)

Phoebe must have done a lot of things right tonight, though some of them certainly seem questionable. Firstly, she found the idol. It’s about time we had someone proactive about finding the idol. Desperate times called for desperate measures and Phoebe certainly rose to the challenge. Great work. What about telling Kat and Kristie though that she had it? pheo idol works.gif
I almost shat myself when she did that. After what Kat had done to her last tribal, and after Phoebe telling us that ‘Kat is dead to me’ I was shocked that she would even consider telling Kat she had the idol. We know now that she voted against Kat, but I’m not convinced that she had already decided to do that when she told Kat about the idol. We did see a scene with Phoebe and Craig where Craig had told both Phoebs and Kristie that he would let them know which way old Vavau was voting. Perhaps that’s a scene we didn’t see and this happened before she told Kat about the idol. (Incidentally how beautiful was it to watch Craig switch it up in that scene once Andy appeared? Andy’s BS radar must have been playing up because if that was me mine would have been bing bing binging more than Hector Salamanca!hector.gif). If she had made that decision before telling Kat about the idol, then this may have been a really smart way to dissuade Kat from voting against her, with minimal repercussions as when Kat goes so does one more person who knows/suspects that Phoebs has an idol. Fark it’s risky though. You can’t herd a Kat. My sense is that Phoebs told those women about the idol moments before heading to tribal, not allowing Kat to use that knowledge in some other way.

There’s also the possibility that Phoebs switched her vote to Kat after hearing what Kat had to say at the tribal, that she had approached Vavau and had told them she was with them. If this is the case though it would seem like potentially a throw away vote if no-one else is voting Kat, unless of course Phoebs decides to play her idol, which she doesn’t. I suspect it’s more likely that Craig told her that the play was against Kat, or she found out some other way. Conner? Did Andy tell her to sure himself up for his Craig coup? I’d like to think that Phoebs was gunning for Kat from the moment Kat wrote Roh’s name down last tribal. If so, damn girl that was stone cold! What a way to serve your revenge! I guess we’ll never know the mechanics behind Phoebe’s move, but it’s fun to speculate.

Kat Gets Creamed

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I’ll let you caption this one yourself. I’m not going there…
After the shenanigans of last tribal it was pretty clear that old Vavau just wanted to use Kat to split up RohBe and flush an idol and then they would be done with her. If Kat was ever going to make it through another tribal she needed to do more post-RohGo than preen, prance, and crow around camp. Not only was it not becoming of her to her tribe mates, but it actually doesn’t achieve anything. Things may have been different had the tribal not flushed the idol. Old Vavau may still have had a use for her then. If ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ were candy and nuts then Kat may still be surviving. I don’t know that there’s actually anything she could have done to save herself tonight short of using Phoebs idol against her, but it seems she was not given the opportunity to do that. I would actually argue that her biggest downfall was not knowing what was going on around camp and generally feeling she was safe and in with Old Vavau. Some tribe awareness would have gone a long way tonight. If she had even the slightest hint that votes were coming her way she could have at least made a scene at tribal, outed Phoebs as having the idol and maybe, just maybe, she could have deflected some votes. Perhaps Andy really was a solid plan B for Craig and Kat, and dropping such a bomb might actually spook them enough to enact plan B. ‘Ifs’ & ‘buts’ huh? Was Andy really on the chopping block though?

Animal Man

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Will tomorrow night’s episode serve up some Andy steak?
Though I usually don’t like to discuss the show itself and the editing, preferring mainly to focus on the gameplay, one couldn’t tonight escape the rough treatment Andy was getting. According to who you ask on any given day the man is a shark, a rat, a sly-dog, a sloth or a snake with the personality of a fish. The man is a walking fucking menagerie. We also learned that when Andy suits up to ‘get down to business’ he puts on his hat. Just what fucking job does this man do where he needs a special business hat?! If I were more talented here is where I would post a photo of am Andy-faced rat wearing a hat and shooting fish in a barrel. Unfortunately I’m not that talented so you’ll just have to use your imagination. For those that have none, trust me, it’s a fucking hilarious image. Anyhow, whether he just dodged a bullet tonight or not, it appears that not everyone is as down with Andy as we first thought. Perhaps he ain’t playing the under the radar game as much as he suspects. In my experience rat-faced sly dog snake shark emus generally don’t blend in to the background. His name was thrown around a lot. First by Kate. I can’t get a read on Kate, was this her attempt at employing some strategy? Craig does a great job of listening to her and telling her what an awesome idea she has had, but I don’t think we see the idea of booting Andy discussed with anyone else other than Aganoans, which leads me to believe that this was a red herring for Kat, and for the audience. What we’re left with though is a pissed off Andy, and that is one particular zoological oddity that I would not want to mess with. Again, if Andy’s smart, and fuck knows he’s told us often enough that he is, he will not let those emotions get in the way of his strategy. Though I’m all for getting rid of people who want you gone, I don’t think that Kristie actually has the power to do so. He’s much better off taking the opportunity now to strike against Craig if that is his main target. If he doesn’t move soon Craig is going to scoop up Kristie and Phoebs and use them for his own purposes, of which we are sadly unaware. What would Phoebe and Kristie’s (Phistie?) best course of action now be?

Phistie of Phury

I suspect that now that Kristie has lost her Kat (a real shame for me as I wanted them to hook up with Kate so that I could use ‘KKKlan’) what is she likely to do? Well she has told us in the past just how dubious she is of trusting Phoebe, and she should be even more so now that she contributed to voting out Kat (although Kristie might not actually know that, and if I were Phoebe I wouldn’t be telling her). But she may not have many other options. imageWe have seen Kristie try and bond with Kate and given their personalities the alliance is not inconceivable, in fact it may actually be a great move for them. Especially if the two of them can somehow get Conner, who in my mind and the mind of Andy is a floater. The three of them could then be quite the power trio (please tell me your suggestion for power trio names in the comments below, all I’m coming up with is Nirvana and we know how that turned out), and I’m sure Kristie could find some way to leverage her knowledge of Phoebe’s idol. Either in recruiting Phoebs, or outing it’s existence to Old Vavau to create a new target. Phoebs may actually choose to tell Kristie that the idol was all a ruse to get Kristie to board her train. Though I suspect that such a move would actually only reinforce in Kristie the idea that Phoebe is dangerous and not to be trusted and will work against Phoebe in the long run. Unless of course Phoebe’s move now is to shift the target to Kristie so that she can see out another tribal and get one step closer to the merge. Whatever that case we can see there are a plethora of options for Phistie and I for one can’t wait to see what they come up with.

So what about Conner and Kate?

As mentioned above, if they can get together they can actually have some power in this tribe. They’re both reasonable at challenges and it seems no one has anything against them. I think the best move for them is to a) hook up, and then b) just sit back and let the rest of Vavau come to them. You’ve got Phistie looking for some foothold to stay in the tribe, and you’ve got Andy on the hunt for his big game. Sit back and let those two sides plus Craig come to you, and then assess your options. There are pros and cons for all of those and going down that particular rabbit hole is too much of a head spin for me this late at night. I have to get sleep at some stage. Tell me what you think.

Hand on the Rung (please singalong to the Paul McCartney & Wings song ‘Band on the Run’ or I’ve just wasted a pun)

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This is what happens when you rely on google for all your jokes…
Just a quick note regarding tonight’s immunity challenge before I go. Damn that looked like a fun challenge. Great to see Matt and Nick working together on the rung puzzle, can’t wait to see which of these two win puzzle wars once the merge happens. Whenever I’ve seen this particular type of puzzle on Survivor in the past I’ve always wondered why nobody does the puzzle outside of the frame first. At least tonight it sounded like Craig had the same idea. Perhaps they’re not allowed to.

Until tomorrow night’s episode of ‘Everybody Hates Andy’, I got nothing else for you. Head back to camp.

– Russell Feathers

Episode 11 analysis here!

Episode 9 – ‘Sharpest Duck in the Barrel’ or ‘Shooting Pencils out of a Case’

If you’re yet to read the analysis of the last episode, you can do so here.

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When a model doesn’t want to see their headshot…
I can say that I honestly was not sure what was going to happen at that tribal, but I think the one question we all what answered is, how did the ducks even get in the barrel? Were they put there specifically with the purpose of being shot out? Is there a lid on the barrel, can they not fly out? Perhaps their wings are clipped so they can’t fly out and they have to be shot out. Perhaps they’re just there eating fish, or monkeys. Whatever the case, this episode was full of cliche clangers and aghast Aganoans.

Phoe-be or not Phoe-be, that is the question.

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At a loss for words…and allies, and idols, and pencil sharpeners.
Gotta say I’m shocked that Roh gave Phoebs the idol. Everything that we’ve seen from Rohan so far has suggested that the idol was for him and him alone. So when we saw that he had given it to Phoebe, I was taken aback. Initially I thought, this could be a good move if he had thrown the rest of original Vavau off the scent, sending one of them packing and moving RohBe closer to being a power couple in Vavau. But why would he choose Phoebs? Phoebs has shown how manipulative and strategic she can be and we know that she wants Rohan gone. I guess he doesn’t have many other options, but since merge it doesn’t seem like he’s worked hard to create other options either. His attempt at forming a bond with Conner and Andrew was clunky to say the least. Andy probably said it best when he labelled it delusional.

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Roh may have been stupid to let that slip, but ten points to Sue for asking!
Strangely, it wasn’t Phoebe that was his downfall. It was Kat. How could Rohan not see that Kat wanted out of old Aganoa? And what was with his vote against Kat? Did he think that he had another person voting Kat and if so whom? I can’t see what he was trying to do there. I’d love to know. I don’t even need to get started on the fact that he told people he had the idol! Also he gave it to Phoebs before tribal! His departure is all on him. Sorry Roh. Now where does this leave Phoebs?

Bottom Phoeder (that’s right, you get two Phoebe puns for the price of one).

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Yeah you better run!
So it seems now that Phoebe is up shit creek without an idol. Pretty sure she has no hope of getting Kat back, which could also mean no Kristie. Who else could she try and team with? It might seem from her point of view that old Vavau are a tight five, we know however that that is not the case. Andy is gunning for Craig, but wisely the shark is not ready to pounce just yet (you read me right, a pouncing shark)! Doesn’t seem that Conner knows what he is doing over there and just hoping that while Aganoans are there he is safe. I do have to give him some credit though for the way he played Roh tonight. Realising that Roh was vulnerable and just teasing piece after piece of info out of him. If that was by design (and it wouldn’t surprise me if it wasn’t), then well done boy. It’s not outside of the realms of possibility that Phoebe could start swaying him. If she is going to do this however she would need to change her approach significantly, we’ve seen what happens when someone comes to Conner with devious plans. She’ll need to be much more subtle than that, and as I’ve suggested before, find out what he wants to do and find a way to work with it rather than tell him what to do. I hope for her sake she can see that. Even with Conner, the numbers are still stacked against her. The best that she can do is paint Kat as a target and hope that she can find that crack in Vavau (or that idol). If she managed to get Roh to give her the idol, I suspect she can find a way to shift the target to Kat.

Kat Scratches Back

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Kat goals…
So last week I said “Kat got game!”. This week I take it back. Kat, where do I start? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, when you get blinkered by your emotions you get blindsided. I don’t think this was a good move for you Kat. What have you been left with Kat? You’ve got Kristie, and maybe KateKat is still a possibility. That’s only three against four and Phoebs. A very vulnerable position. Great work from Craig in recognising that Kat was a flipper, and using her to flush the idol. Given that Craig, and it seems the rest of old Vavau  know how much of a loose canon she is, it’s unlikely that she’ll make it much further in this tribe. Unless….

Duck Hunt

Though both Kat and Andy have prey in their sites, the way they take their prey down couldn’t be more different. Kat, playing with her emotions, took out Rohan first chance she had. Shotgunning spectacularly and not caring who the shrapnel hits. The backfire could be injurious to her game. Then we have Andy. Sharklike, drifting along with the current, always knowing where Craig is, but lying in wait until he is separated from the rest of the ducks/albatrosses/seals/pick your animal that fits in a barrel. He knew that tonight was not the night to go for Craig. It would open up a big crack for RohBe to fit in, potentially forcing him to the outs. So is now the time to strike? I don’t see the rest of old Vavau moving against anyone but Aganoa, they all look pretty comfortable in their little five, with no need to rock the boat.

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Cue Jaws music…
Let’s play this out in our heads… If Andy were to employ Kat as his zapper take her out a-hunting, and Kristie as duck hunt dog, then he has three. He only needs another two to take Craig. Phoebe is there for the plucking but I suspect that he is wary of giving her a foothold. We know that Andy has already flagged getting rid of Craig with Sue, so potentially there’s another one. I suspect Conner will do whatever he needs to do to make sure it’s not him, so potentially he is there for the scooping also. And last week it looked like and I hoped that KateKat would be a thing, though Kate may be less willing to align herself with Kat now that she has seen Kat’s claws, yet still a possibility. If, possible idol notwithstanding, Andy does go ahead with a charge against Craig next tribal, then I don’t see much left in the way of negative repercussions for Andy within Vavau. But does he need to do it now? Does he suspect that he would find himself in Craig’s firing line soon? The more I think about this the more torn I am. While last week I thought that Craig took a big hit in losing JL, he still seems like he has solid alliances within Vavau. He also has been a challenge beast. If Andy pounces now then we have a number of people who know that Andy is a playa, and potentially a threat. Ideally he’d want to take down Craig without coming off like the strategic mastermind, but I don’t know if there’s a way that he can do that. Without knowing more about how tight both Andy’s and Craig’s alliances are, there’s no way I can confidently say when Andy should strike. Strike too soon, possible target on your own back. Wait too long, Craig gains more influence. One thing’s for sure, this is the biggest battle playing out in Samoa right now, for me at least.

Jolly JL

A quick note on JL before I wrap this up. We saw a big bright smile on JL’s face tonight as she tells us how she is massaging her way in to The Pu through Kylie. Good luck lady. You can’t spell ‘Kryptonite ally’ without ‘Partly not Kylie’.

I’d like to point out that I actually met Rohan at Survivor auditions earlier in the year and he told me there that he thought if anyone would win the game, I would. So I’m taking this as me making it to at least final 18!!

It’s late and I got nothing else for you but even more shite anagrams. Head back to camp.

– Russell Feathers

 

Episode 10 analysis here!

 

 

 

 

 

Episode 8 – ‘Stray Kat Strut’ OR ‘Sitting Duck Flap’

If you’re yet to read the analysis of the previous episode, then much like Nick said to JL, “maybe you should look it up” here.

An episode without a tribal council would usually mean little to talk about, in this case it actually means we could potentially talk all night. Unfortunately I try to have some sort of life outside of Survivor (otherwise I’d find myself divorced, again), so rather than run through what this shake up means for each of our top eighteen players, I’ll just focus on a few of the major players.

Merge & Purge

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I am very disappointed they didn’t let the tribes come up with their own new names…what the shit?!
So it came as no surprise that the big twist that was coming tonight was the merge from three tribes to two. Once J-LaP announced that the tribes weren’t playing for immunity it was pretty clear that the advantage was the ability to choose your tribe. I don’t want to analyse The Pu’s choices too much as my gut feeling is that no matter how you use that advantage there will be pros and cons. Especially when you are put on the spot, you’re never going to be able to compare and contrast every possible tribe permutation. I guess it seemed smart enough for The Pu to go with a mix of ex-Pu, strength for challenges and someone who would be easy to shaft.

Nick’s shit list

Nick really is feeling bitter about the way he was booted from Vavau. While I’m a big believer in doing whatever you can to get rid of the people that want you gone, I do also believe that if you let your emotions blinker your vision in the game, you can be more easily blindsided. I’m not sure exactly what he was trying to do by pulling JL aside for a chat, but with Nick being Nick, it was never going to end happily. Did make for some fun television though. So what does Nick need to do from here to extend his life in the tribe? Well, as long as he sticks with the pre-merge Pu he should be safe for at least one tribal, if they choose to get rid of JL. I don’t see him having much life past that though. The way things are I suspect that move would see him on the bottom of the remaining eight. If he is to stick around any longer than this he needs to start looking for cracks in the original Pu. Though JL could be a number that he could use to help him switch up the numbers in Pu, I think it is just too dangerous to keep her around, she hates him too much. Given that (we know) Brick doesn’t want Matt long term, and Matt has already shown that he is wary of Flick (though it seems currently that he believes is comfortable with his Angels, more on that later) perhaps he can wriggle into that crack. Regardless which road he takes I am interested to see just what he is going to do to stick around. He will need to shake things up at some stage, and being Nick, I’m sure he will.

Jennah-Louise

Where to for JL though? Wow, I don’t know. Unfortunately she has already burned the Nick bridge. While we don’t know much about their dynamic when they where in Vavau together, I think JL actually had an opportunity here to buddy up to Nick, shift the blame for the Nick vote onto one of the other Vavauans. Of course emotions and pride got in the way of smart play and it didn’t pan out that way. Now she’s between a rock and Rohan’s abs. Maybe she could hook up with Brick? Brooke sounds a little hurt that Matt got his way and they kept Nick instead of Teags, so maybe if JL went to Brick they might let JL take the place that Teags was to have. Though we know that that particular place was only ever going to be temporary, I guess it’s a start for her. I just can’t see what JL’s move is. Have you any ideas?

Matt

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There’s reason we barely saw Charlie in Charlie’s Angels, he was a douche…
Matt, Matt, Matt… We had such high hopes for you. I’m hoping you can still turn it around but every episode it seems you just show us less and less.

“Roll up, roll up and watch the strategy disappear right before your very eyes!”

Dude, please get back with Sammy, actually work him properly rather than just buddy him. Get Lee and Maybe El on your side and break up Brick. For someone who makes a living with misdirection, it seems that you’re not realising that you yourself are being misdirected, by bosom. My Dad used to say “if you’re going to go out you might as well go out smiling” (that’s a lie, my Dad never actually said that, mostly he just said “give that Survivor shit a rest and get into a real sport, like drinking”). That was a cheap shot, both at my Dad and at Matt. We don’t even know, or care, if Matt is a fan of the bosom. What we do know is that it looks like he thinks he has his shit on lock with those women and if that IS what he is thinking, not only is he mistaken, but he doesn’t deserve the title of Survivor. Brick has already fought against him and he knows it, he just seems to have a short memory.

El to the Lee

Of all of the players in The New Pu I would argue that Lee and El are in the best position. All they need to do is sit back and let people come to them and assess what their best move is from there. I hope for their sake that they realise this. If you think I’m wrong about this, please let me know what I’m not seeing in the comments.

Have a Break, have a KateKat.

Kat got game bitches! Finally she has an opportunity to get her claws out and start playing this game. And don’t she just look like the Kat that got the cream? I would argue that Kate is in a very similar situation to Kat, kind of on the outside of the core alliance, with little she could do in her old tribe. Merge holds a lot of potential for KateKat, as long as they can identify those in the new Vavau who also need some direction, they can scoop them up and get some numbers. It would only take for KateKat to scoop Conner, Roh, and maybe Andrew and the game would really be shaken up. Phoebe’s and Craig’s pre-merge position of power would be made more impotent than a quadriplegic eunuch. I think Kat has it in her to do this, I’m less convinced that Kate does though. Kat would need to take the lead in that duo, which looks like it is the case from what we’ve seen so far. Whatever the case, Vavau is primed for a big shake-up.

Craig

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Much like vegetable crudités, this scene was delicious.
Without JL, Craig has a lot of work to do to secure his life in the tribe. I suspect what he’ll try and do is boost his alliance of three (He, Andy and Sue) to one of five by drawing in perhaps Conner and Kate. We know however that that is not going to work as Andy is gunning for him. Does he suspect that? I don’t know. I get the feeling that Andy has done a pretty good job of maintaining Craig’s sense of security. For some reason in my mind’s eye I see him teaming up with Phoebs, they just seem like a good couplet. For now I might just stop speculating on Craig’s move as a lot could depend on what he does with that idol clue. I would suggest that he find that idol ASAP without letting anyone know about the clue, then he can start plotting what will work for him. Like I said, interesting times ahead at Vavau. I need to point out here how happy I was to see a clue in that buffet. As I said in the previous post, that has been sorely lacking in Survivor up until now, and though we didn’t see any players proactively looking for a clue in the banquet (I’m looking at you Andy!), it was still good to see that promise of the Vavau idol reappear in a classic Survivor way.

RohBe

This switch-up is something of a stitch-up for Phoebs. Having lost her core alliance in El, I’m not quite sure what she is left with. At least she knows that Roh has the idol and she can use this information as leverage in a few ways. Firstly, she could bury the hatchet with Roh and she can use the idol vicariously through him to keep herself safe. I’m not sure that Roh is going to go for that, but at the moment it doesn’t seem like he has much else. Or she can try and form an alliance outside of Aganoa, bringing Kristie with her, and throw some shade at Roh from that side, convincing them that they need to flush his idol. There’s a lot of options here for her. None of them seem particularly strong to me. If ever there was a time to work your magic Phoebe and start bringing the social game that we suspect you have in line with your strategic game, and weasel yourself into something with old Vavau now is the time.

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At a loss for words, and allies.
Rohan, you’re in even more dire straits, though at least you have an idol. My thinking is that the best thing for you to do is start looking for where the cracks are in old Vavau and choosing someone to align with, and showing them your idol to solidify trust. Can’t wait to see how this shakes down. Having two hidden immunity idols in one tribe is going to be epic!

Andy

Keep on rocking brother, you’re in a good spot at the moment. Pick your alliance wisely and you’ll take down Craig. Just don’t tip your hand man, or he’ll whip out his idol. Best thing you can do now is show Craig you’re still strong with him so that he’ll either warn you about his idol, or he’ll never see you coming. Like when JL is “wearing it”, sharkskin looks good on you.

Yep, that was a long one. After that, I got nothing else for you, head back to camp.

– Russell Feathers

Check out Episode 9 discussion here!

 

Episode 7 – ‘Telling Whoppers’ OR ‘Would You Like Lies With That?’

If you missed my analysis of the previous episode, you can get into it here.

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The Last Saanapu. We expect a merge tomorrow!

How Now less-Brown Vavau?

Before we get into The Pu, last post I said I was interested to see what was going to go down in Vavau now that Andy has shown the audience his hand in terms of flipping on his alliance and eliminating Craig. We got to see a little more of this at the start of the episode. He finally actually starts putting his plan into action with step one, talking to Conner and Sam, who quite wisely, seem to be just hanging back and waiting for the tribe to come to them. We also see Kate doing the same thing, though for mine this was done a little more subtly, but actually less convincingly. If I were Sam and Conner I’m not sure which of the two I might align with. Given the way that Andy approached them I would imagine that their impression of Andy could be that he is a strategic mind. Though Kate was a lot more subtle, she for mine gave off a very ‘maybe’ vibe when she spoke to them, I would have less confidence that she is willing to go with me and also less confidence that she has any power to do anything. So in one way they are in a good position, if they can work it to have both Kate and Andy vote their way then suddenly they have the numbers to flip it and vote Craig, Sue, or Jennah-Louise. Do Craig, Sue and Jennah-Lousie have any clue what is happening in the background? I guess time will tell. I’m glad they didn’t go to tribal yet, I’m happy to watch this particular boil fester more so that when it finally pops, everybody ends up with mess on their face. Speaking of…

Armpit of Despair

This post wouldn’t be complete without some mention of Vavau’s honorary eighth member, Violent Femme. The blister in the sun. To be honest this whole section took up way too much airtime for my taste. This would have been ok had Kate gone home, but instead things happened differently.

Pu in a Pickle

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All eyes on Nick. Where he goes from here is anyone’s guess.
Pu’s physical weakness since losing Sam and Conner was evidenced by them losing the immunity challenge despite Nick’s best efforts, and being sent to tribal. Unsurprisingly, this led to us seeing Nick scramble to keep his head above water. He comes up with a two pronged plan. Prong A, leverage the fact that he has been valuable around camp and in challenges. Prong B, convince the rest of the tribe to split the vote to flush the idol, and send the other vote Tegan’s way. To me this was unexpected as we’d heard in the lead up to this that Nick thought Teags was his strongest ally. Good play though. He clearly saw that the threesome of Brick and Matt were not going to be split up (though I’m surprised that Flick still trusts Matt given he voted against her two tribals ago), and with Kylie having an idol, it came down to he and Tegan. So he had little choice but to throw her under the pus, er bus. Kylie once again showed that she really isn’t or can’t play a strategic game. Perhaps her strategy was just use her idol to get through to merge and start from scratch. If so, it worked. Hopefully for her she can actually form an alliance tomorrow when we see the three tribes merge into two (unless we see another crazy twist).

TeGone

Unlike Nick, Tegan ingratiates herself into her tribe by playing a social game. Since episode one I and many others both in game and out have said that Nick was overplaying it. Tonight we saw how just how striking the contrast between Nick’s overplaying and Tegan’s underplaying (?) is. I was watching thinking that this would work in Tegan’s favour. How wrong I was. But just because I was wrong doesn’t mean that Pu was right. Was this the right move or the wrong move for The Pu? Let’s compare the pros and cons of keeping Nick against the pros and cons of keeping Tegan. If you keep Nick, it’s possible that post-merge he is a bigger target, which takes a vote off you for at least one tribal. However, strategically it could be argued that Nick actually is a bigger threat. You know he’s going to stop at nothing to get as far as he can. And while I’ve said before that there is no way that he will win the game, he only needs to make it through one tribal more than Matt or Brick for it to be proven a bad move for them.

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Footage of Nick explaining why he would want to keep Tegan around.
If you keep Tegan, then arguably you could be more comfortable that she is not going to do something unpredictable and maybe you can actually have an alliance with her. Other than Nick she has no-one else in the game, so once Nick goes she is easy for Matt and Brick to bring into the fold as a tight number. Perhaps they thought though that if this were the case she would recognise that she was on the bottom of that particular four and try and find a way to flip it. What’s more likely, and more stupid, is that they kept Nick because he is better at challenges and they can’t afford to lose another challenge. Well, that backfired now that the three tribes are about to merge into two. Sure, they didn’t know that a merge was coming, but they fuggin should have! History tells us that in seasons with three tribes, they will generally merge into two once the number of players remaining is two more than would be in two tribes. In this case, 8 per tribe plus two, which is where we’re at. The fact that nobody is (seemingly) talking or thinking about when the merge will come is disappointing to me.

Whopper Clue-nior?

burger cheers
BEEF! TOMATO! LETTUCE! MAYO! BUN! By your powers combined I AM CAPTAIN WHOPPER JUNIOR!
Disappointing too is that no-one in Vavau looks for an idol clue in their reward. Vavau is the only  tribe who haven’t found their camp’s hidden immunity idol. As this is the last reward before merge this would be the perfect opportunity to hide the clue somewhere in the reward. It’s great for hungry Jack’s too, as it would result in lot’s of close-ups of their product and packaging. Anyway I’m not going to tell you how to do your job channel ten, and I understand that if you’re hungry and malnourished and seeing a burger for the first time in weeks, then looking for clues might not be top of mind. It’s easy for me to sit on my comfy couch with a bellyful of bratwurst and sauerkraut and judge Vavau for not thinking game instead of food. Still…FUCKING HELL HAVE ANY OF THESE MORONS ACTUALLY WATCHED SURVIVOR? That’s enough ranting from me, I’ve got nothing else for you, head back to camp.

– Russell Feathers

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