Thursday, February 12, 2009

Survivor: Tocantis Episode 1 Thoughts

I had a grandiose plan of doing a preview of this season's Survivor, but disaster hit on Sunday: My laptop decided to breakdown. The diagnosis? Video card dead. The solution? Purchasing a new laptop (to the regret of my pocketbook.) Hopefully, this helps to explain why I'm (a) reverting to the list o' thoughts format and (b) why this might be shorter than expected.

  • The old bait and switch was in full effect. Two people are going to be voted out indeed. Instead, we got a Survivor favourite - identifying to everybody who the consensus weak link is. I swear though, Mark Burnett was thrilled when he saw the polar opposite reactions to the shunning.

  • Sandy's reaction was not surprising. Heck, I'd be angry as well if I had shown up and had my opportunity taken away simply because people thought I was too old. But I really thought she was in trouble when she decided to go for the Idol instead of setting up camp. As it turns out, she benefitted from a strong performance in immunity challenge (though it really helped her to be put in the easiest position to succeed.) It also helped that somebody managed to step up to annoy the "Jalapeno" tribe.

  • Meanwhile, at the Timbira tribe, Sierra took the attitude that she had to prove herself, so she was going to build the shelter while her tribe struggled to make it to the camp site. This was an excellent idea since she pretty well tanked her chances of surviving the first vote by admitting she had "strep throat" and a 102 degree fever. Ultimately, it didn't matter - Timbira won immunity so she was spared, and has at least three more days to integrate herself into the tribe (or hope that somebody else screws up.)

  • Tangential note - it took me 5 minutes to realize that Timbira (the black tribe) were wearing dark colours while "Jalapeno" (the red tribe) were wearing bright colours.

  • And now, to poor, poor, Carolina. It was pretty obvious that they were setting her up to be the other person who could be voted out. They were showing her "bossy" side and playing it up even before the immunity challenge. By the time she tried to change her ways, it was too late. She hadn't performed well in the Immunity Challenge, and now she's pushing people around. She has to go. Realistically, she broke two of the rules to avoid being the first person voted out: (1) Don't take a leadership role (especially if the tribe doesn't want to be lead) and (2) Don't be a hot woman. Yes, the Matty P corollory - The hot chicks get voted out first - reared its ugly head yet again. I'm kinda surprised that I didn't get a phone call from Matt, but it's possible that he didn't actually watch this episode.

  • To continue with the "I'm a guy, so I'm going to talk about attractive women" meme, Sydney is stunning.

  • A general observation of this year's players - they seem to all be aware of how the game is played, which means that this season is going to be more interesting to the hardcore Survivor fan. This makes me nervous though, because next season could see a swing back to the wacky character. I hope I'm wrong.

  • My prediction for who gets voted out next episode is Sandy. I just don't see her surviving again, especially when she still isn't integrating herself into the tribe.

All in all, a good episode which hints at a good season to come. I might be back later this week with some thoughts on some of the individual players, but if not, I will see you here next week for episode 2!

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