Friday, December 17, 2010

My Survivor Hall of Fame Vote

Somebody came up with the idea of creating a Survivor Hall of Fame. 50% of the voting was opened up to the public, and I as a fan of Survivor and a member of the public, decided to cast a vote. Here is who I voted for and a brief description why I voted for them.

1) Richard Hatch

The original. Hatch formed the basics of Survivor strategy, which continued for 4 more seasons. (Even Amazon had the Rob/Matthew alliance, though that was ultimately broken.) The strategy basically forced the Survivor producers to throw new wrinkles into the game, giving us the triball switch among other attempts to prevent alliances from dominating the game. While it's been said that somebody would have come up with the strategy of creating a voting bloc alliance, the fact remains that Hatch was the only one on the first season to successfully use this strategy. His throwing of the final immunity challenge, knowing full well that both Rudy and Kelly would have to bring him to the final tribal council, was a genius move. And let's be honest - if you were to ask anybody to name a Survivor player, Richard Hatch is most likely to be named among the non-hardcore fans.

2) Rob Mariano

In Marquases,"Boston" Rob Mariano drove his tribe to complete what was a first - voting out an alpha male who had much to add to help his tribe in challenges and at camp. In All-Stars, Mariano dominated the game and probably should have won the game, if it wasn't for a jury who was bitter at being ousted by him and his grating personality while dealing with these people. In Heroes vs. Villains, Rob had the biggest target on his back. And yet, he still dominated, only to be eliminated when Tyson had a brain fart moment. Rob has cemented himself as one of the most dominant and iconic players in Survivor history.

3) Russell Hantz

Before Season 19, it was pretty easy to categorize player. There were schemers, physical threats, characters and other. Then Russell Hantz came along and mixed everything up. He played the game so agressively, driven by a plan of creating so much chaos that he would force others to make mistakes. He seemingly didn't care that his tribe was being whittled away, unable to win any challenges. That he was going into the merge with his tribe being well behind in numbers did not faze him. Instead, he stuck to his game of making sure that everybody was off balance, nobody was comfortable around camp, and somehow managed to flip the game to his advantage. His downfall? The same as Boston Rob's - he aggrivated everybody that he played the game with so much, he stood no chance to win. This alone wasn't enough for him to make my list though. He came back to Heroes vs. Villains and repeated the same performance, making it to the finals again. If he plays again, he will be the star, rightly or wrongly.

4) Parvati Shallow

Parvati probably should have been the first ever two time winner. Parvati's first appearance was most notable for her being a flirt. Her second appearance saw her win the game, destroying Amanda in final tribal council. And in Heroes vs Villain, she was the person that many people wanted to eliminate, and yet she still made it to the end, losing because of her alliance with Russell. An incredible game which deserved better. She might be the perfect player.

5) Sandra Diaz-Twine

I went back and forth with this pick. I really did not want to put Sandra here, as I felt that she won two seasons by backdooring into the final, and basically being the receipient of protest votes (do not forget that Lill selected Sandra and has (a) alienated the rest of the jury with her antics and (b) was only back in the game because of that incredibly horrible Outcasts twist.) But as I went through the list of other players who could conceivably be selected, they all had just as big of flaws, if not more. Which left me staring at Sandra and her perfect record in playing the game of Survivor. She has never lost. No matter how much I try to justify excluding her, I keep coming back to her two wins and saying I can't deny this. So I chose her as my final pick.

(Note: the inductees have been announed! Parvati Shallow, Rob Mariano, Russell Hantz, Richard Hatch and Sandra Diaz-Twine)

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