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Posts Tagged ‘Jeff Probst’

So, the teams merged. I didn’t expect it this week because there were 11 people left – don’t they usually do it at an even number? It felt kind of like the producers panicked that Kalabaw was going to lose again and get down to 3, so they’d better act quick. Anyway, because of the merge, there was more strategizing than ever and I realized two things: 1) I don’t ever have to learn yellow tribe’s real name now! and 2) it’s probably a good thing they won all the time because almost everyone on yellow is supremely annoying. I’m kind of dreading the coming weeks when they’re going to be getting the majority of face time.

Yellow had a clear numbers advantage (7 to 4), but with RC and Skupin on the outside, it seemed fairly obvious that they would jump ship to the former reds and take out Pete (or someone). I was totally on board with this plan, particularly since it would likely lead to Abi getting voted out rather quickly and my simmering hate for her is reaching a boiling point. She’s just such a miserable, crazy person. Unfortunately, this plan would put the two remaining returning members on Jeff Kent’s side (make no mistake, as much as Penner would like to think otherwise, Jeff Kent is the one running this show). Jeff Kent has a strange fixation on making sure that a returning player – and especially Penner – doesn’t win, so he immediately starts flip flopping, talking with Carter about flipping and voting with the other yellows to get rid of Penner. All the wheeling and dealing and scenarios are confusing and edited in such a way that by the time Tribal Council rolls around, I have no idea which way the vote is going. It wasn’t like a blindside but more like when you get to the end of a mystery novel and they’ve planted a million red herrings and one real clue and the detective goes around and explains everything and you’re supposed to have remembered what happened in one sentence 200 pages ago and you realize the whole book was just a way of tricking you and there was no possibility that you could’ve ever figured out the answer before the fictional detective because the author was being purposefully misleading? You know, like that? Anyway, I’m just trying to say that the editing made it so convoluted that the ending wasn’t shocking so much as it just . . . was.

Before that though, there’s an immunity challenge where people have to hold onto handles with ropes connected to a bucket containing 25% of their body weight. I enjoyed this attempt to make it more fair, as well as the fact that there was one immunity for men and one for women. Denise won for the women, and I think she could’ve easily won it all. It came down to Carter and Jeff Kent, who definitely should have the strongest wrists out of everyone there. Instead though, after a brief whispered discussion, he basically gave up and let Carter win. I don’t get that, but neither of them were in danger of going home so hey, whatever.

The other interesting thing that happened at camp is that Lisa (“I say I don’t want people to know I’m famous but I’m going to talk about being famous all the time because I actually really do like being recognized”) decided to dig though everyone’s bags to air out their clothes and found Malcolm’s hidden immunity idol. I mean seriously, even if I didn’t have a hidden idol, I don’t think I’d be too happy with this random woman digging through my stuff. In any case, Malcolm quickly pulls her aside and promises her final 3 with him and Denise if she doesn’t say anything. She blindly agrees, which makes her either the dumbest person on the show or someone who’s shrewd enough to look innocent while digging through people’s stuff and finding out major secrets. She says she’s a good actress, but I don’t think sitcom “stars” from the ’80s are that good.

So, at Tribal Council, Jeff Probst gets to interrogate the yellow tribe for the first time, and quickly finds out that RC and Abi don’t like each other and that a blindside is coming. Hey, Probst – it’s almost always a blindside these days. They’ve said the word blindside so many times during this season that it’s starting to lose all meaning. Anyway, after the vote, Penner plays his idol (proving that he wasn’t quite as secure in his position that the editing would have led us to believe) and RC was sent home as the second-place vote getter. It was just kind of a quiet ending to all the scheming that went on, since she would’ve been first to go had the tribes not merged and had yellow finally lost.

Oh well, onwards and upwards. Next week, the wrath of Penner!

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Well, things just got a little more interesting. Oh sure, Kalabaw has replaced Matsing as the pathetic tribe that can’t do anything right (lending credence to my prediction of Denise as bad luck charm), but this week they actually lost a tribe by negotiating a win for it. So that was something new and different.

The reward challenge involved the two teams being pitted against each other to push a giant wicker ball around a muddy field, with the winner being the first team to score 3 goals. For once, it seems like Survivor‘s cracked team of challenge testers – I assume these people exist and frankly, I’d watch a reality show about the creation and testing of Survivor games before I’d watch a lot of other shows out there right now – anyway, it seems like the challenge testers failed to realize that this challenge would devolve into a weird muddy stalemate with people in various compromising positions around the giant ball. After an hour of this (I loved the shot of the other team members slowly deciding to sit down on the sidelines as the boredom set in), Penner and Skupin start talking. Penner brought it up initially, but Skupin was more than happy to latch on – if the Kabalaw tribe is allowed to win and go to the Survivor picnic of sandwiches and brownies, they’ll give the yellow tribe (I’m not going to learn their name until they actually go to tribal council) the rest of their rice. Thanks to a very informative segment at the beginning of the show, the yellow tribe is running dangerously low on rice, partly because Skupin apparently decided that eating it raw would cook it in their stomachs. This guy has obviously had one too many hits on the head, but the other tribe members are just as stupid for going along with it. Probst eventually tells the tribes (I’m sure after some rushed conversations in the producer’s tent) that he’ll allow this strange turn of events as long as all the members of the tribe agree to it. Penner secures Kalabaw’s acquiescence by promising to fish for food (although it’s not clear why they haven’t been eating a ton of fish before now, if he’s so proficient at fishing), but Skupin has a bit more trouble. He finally gets passive aggressive “whatever, do what you want” type answers from Abi and Artis, who both seem to like complaining after the fact than doing something at the time. So, everybody wins! Yellow gets all the rice (which in the end amounts to about one day’s more rice than they already had) and red gets momentary satisfaction but is now completely foodless and screwed going forward. Oh, the reward also includes Letters from Home, which seems kind of early, doesn’t it? The survivors gamely put on their “this is better than any brownie or sustained rice supply could ever be!” faces, but unless they’re going to eat the letters, that’s mostly just empty propaganda.

Back at camp the next day, Penner talks a big game but manages to catch two of the tiniest fish I’ve ever seen. Everyone has a bite of it raw, and Penner annoys everyone by continuing to ramble on about how full he is from that tiny bite. Carter whines about how he’s going to be the first to die if it comes to a starve-off. I can’t totally blame him – having no rice is really stupid, even just because you don’t have that psychological safety net that the rice will always be there if everything else fails. I am personally really happy to see the question of starvation brought back into the game again. I like it better when tribes have to ration their rice and people definitely bring more drama when they’re half-starved. It’s Survivor 101.

The immunity challenge involves one tribe member using a sling shot to shoot the ball where all the other players have to try to catch it with a basket. It’s a Survivor-lacrosse-baseball hybrid, and unsuprisingly, Jeff Kent is really good at it. Unfortunately, they have Katie on their team, who Probst once again points out, is completely useless. Yellow tribe has to sit out a guy and a girl, and Abi again sits. When Probst asks incredulously why she’s only played 2 out of 8 challenges, she says it’s not her fault. I wish they’d show the strategy sessions where they decide she should sit. From my angle, she is just a whiny, annoying girl who prefers to sit out and criticize what other people do than participate and put herself in a position to be criticized. Anyway, none of it really matters because Malcolm is a god among men and runs circles around Carter and, in the deciding point, Jeff Kent. Kalabaw once again goes back to tribal council.

The strategizing around camp is really well-edited, to the point where it’s actually not clear whether Katie or Penner will be going home. Denise professes to feel vulnerable at tribal, but she was conspicuously absent from all conversations around camp, so I knew it wouldn’t be her. The decision really fell to Jeff Kent and Carter to choose whether to send the useless Katie or the big-talking but equally useless Penner home. They suspect that Penner has the hidden idol and think it might be a good idea to blindside him, or at least flush out the idol. All the talk about blindsides during tribal was really fun, and added to the drama of what was about to happen, since everyone knew someone was going to be blindsided, but no one knew who. I also particularly loved when Probst asked Kent whether he plays any game in the real world that is similar to Survivor in terms of strategy. Kent didn’t take the bait, but I hope he stays around for a long time so Probst can get more obvious with his references to Kent’s baseball past – “Jeff, would you say you hit a figurative home run at the challenge today? Have you ever hit a literal home run at the major league level?”

In the end, Penner only got Katie’s vote (and seemed actually delighted at the possibility of being blindsided), but Katie was the one who was (rightfully) sent home. Penner might have been the idiot who lost them the rice, but Katie is the idiot who has lost them 2 challenges, so you do what you gotta do. Of course, from the previews for next week’s episode, it looks like the merge is immanent, so Kent might have made a strategic error by not eliminating Penner when they had the chance. On the other hand, this season of Survivor has been filled with “twists” that I wouldn’t count anyone out just yet. Plus, yellow tribe has had these simmering issues for so long, that they might go crazy when they get to their first tribal and send home one of their own. After the negotiations in the reward challenge this week, I’m ready for anything.

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Well, it was inevitable I suppose. Despite how much I would have liked it if the Survivor gods could have figured out a way to let poor, pathetic Matsing continue on as a tribe of two (and I especially liked the comically tiny mat they had at the beginning of the reward challenge), it just wasn’t to be, and they were absorbed into the red and yellow tribes (whose names I suppose I will now have to learn). What’s disappointing is that this alliance that Malcolm and Denise have forged is now probably irrelevant, since it’s unlikely they’ll both make it back to the merge, and even if they do, they’ll probably have found new loyalties by then (although if Malcolm manages to hang on to the hidden immunity idol, a whole bunch of possibilities remain open). Anyway, now the game is basically starting fresh, the three-tribe experiment being an unfortunate failure.

Both Malcolm’s yellow tribe and Denise’s red tribe welcome them with open arms. Both are immediately approached to become the swing vote in an alliance, and both smartly (and eagerly) accept. Anything to keep them in the game another week. It’s surprising how no one was shown as planning on voting them out the first chance they got. There’s no such thing as tribal loyalty in this season, I guess. I loved how much Malcolm was revelling in being the popular kid. He seemed re-energized, and his performance in both of the challenges showed just how much of a threat he could be when surrounded by a competent tribe. At this point, he’s definitely my favourite.

With the merge of the tribes came the separation of the reward and immunity challenges. The reward challenge was cool, as players from opposite tribes had to knock the idols off of their opponent’s balancing thingy (that was the technical term I think). Skupin figured out the strategy (throwing your own idol high in the air and then knocking your distracted opponents off ensuring his hits the ground before yours) and it was then copied by everyone else until the yellow tribe won reward (cookies and muffins). Malcolm’s giddiness was contrasted with Denise’s continued dejection. Back at camp, things got even worse for Denise’s new red tribe, as Dana takes ill and decides to leave the game even though, as Jeff Probst noted time and again, she wasn’t sick enough to be forced out yet. Jeff also got a little handsy during the whole thing, taking off her coat and rubbing her back, shoulders, and legs. I know he was trying to be comforting but it was a little much.

Anyway, Dana’s departure was a problem for the red tribe’s female alliance, and someone named Katie and someone named Dawson seemed to be in the crosshairs to be eliminated, especially since, despite Katie’s happiness at having Denise there to help out their female numbers, she never seemed to actually approach Denise with this idea. Instead, Denise was squarely on Jeff Kent’s side.

The immunity challenge (of the obstacle course/puzzle variety) was close, but Katie’s pathetic inability to get across the first obstacle seemed to have been the deciding factor in cementing their loss (as Jeff Probst so helpfully pointed out again and again and again). Back at camp, discussion turned to whether to vote out Dawson or Katie. For the first time since the first episode, we actually got to see more of Dawson. She’s the only one who knows Jeff Kent’s true identity, and it seems her strategy for using this information is to make subtle remarks about how much baseball sucks. This doesn’t seem to accomplish much more than annoying Jeff and making everyone else wonder why the hell this girl talks about baseball so much if she hates it, but her inane rambling might have been one of the reasons the tribe ultimately decides to vote her out instead of the useless Katie. After Jeff Probst snuffed her torch, Dawson stopped and I thought for a glorious second she was going to reveal Jeff Kent’s true identity. Instead, in possibly one of the weirdest moments in tribal council history, she gave Jeff Probst a longing gaze, leaned in for a hug and an awkward kiss on the cheek.

So, that’s that. It’s hard to see how Malcolm’s stacked yellow tribe will ever lose a challenge, particularly if they keep getting to sit Abi (I love that Jeff Probst pointed out that she’s only played 2 challenges so far – hopefully that will make her the first to go if they ever arrive at tribal. There’s crazy and then there’s batshit crazy and I think she’s the latter). Wouldn’t it be funny if the red tribe also got down to 2 people? At what point would you have to identify Denise as a bad luck charm and not just an unfortunate bystander?

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After last week’s bore, Survivor was back with a vengeance this week. Sure, the ending was the same (Matsing lost, yet again), but the journey was so much more enjoyable.

First of all, things are finally getting interesting at the other tribes. Some guy named Pete (who I swear last week was called Peter) has decided to “create a little chaos” by taking the hidden idol clue that Abi showed him and putting it in RC’s things where everyone could find it. Now Abi thinks RC is a liar, RC thinks Abi is even crazier than usual, and Pete is sitting happy in the middle. Even if there’s no immediate consequences, it was at least fun to watch and bodes well for the imminent post-Matsing future.

Meanwhile, at the red tribe, Jeff Kent, Penner, and some guy named Carter (who must have been dropped off on the island yesterday because he sure as hell hasn’t been on screen at all before then) have decided to form an alliance. The girls sensed this, and the girl with short blond hair, the girl who knows who Jeff Kent is, and the other one (who may or may not be named Dawson) formed their own counter-alliance. Once again, there are no immediate consequences but the game play is definitely ramping up on the other beaches. I only question the likelihood that any of these early strategizing sessions will matter, as I anticipate a full-on reorganization of the tribes once Matsing is decimated beyond repair. Jeff Kent and Penner might be solid now, but there’s a good chance they’ll end up on opposite tribes, so I’m not going to put too much stock into their (five-fingered!) handshakes. Yet.

Still, though, most of the time was spent with Matsing. Their desperation was palpable as they entered the immunity challenge, and, with Malcolm heading out first, they actually enjoyed a lead. This challenge was all about brute force, so the other tribes were at a definite advantage in being allowed to sit their three girls. Denise held her own, but Russell once again slowed everyone down. The shots of him collapsed feebly with his hand on the mat while Malcolm struggled like hell to break those rice pots was telling. As Jeff put it, he acts as though he’s Superman, but really, he’s just a man, and a man who’s bad at challenges to boot. The immunity challenge itself was one of the most entertaining ones in a long time. I loved the way it was shot, I loved the way Jeff kept yelling more and more frantically, I loved that it came down to a final shot between Jeff Kent and Malcolm, and I loved that Jeff Kent’s ball missed it on the way by and broke it on the way back. They didn’t show it, but I can picture an aside on the cutting room floor where Jeff Kent attributed his ability to win the challenge to competing for so many years in the pressure of the MLB. The whole thing was just thrilling and, for a second or two there, I actually thought Matsing might avoid tribal council for the first time.

Alas, it was not to be. The subsequent discussions around camp took on a really interesting dynamic. After the first few seasons when there was a final two instead of a final three, I can’t think of another time when three people had to sit around and decide who was going to go home. As Malcolm noted, every discussion between two people involved a promise to vote the other one out. At tribal council, Jeff forced all of them to make their case for why they should stay, but the tone was more joking than defeated. At this point, I guess you pretty much have to laugh to keep from weeping. Malcolm and Denise finally made the right decision and sent a bewildered Russell home.

The producers this week surprised me by not instituting a merge/reshuffling of tribes, and I hope this continues next week. I’d love to see what Malcolm and Denise accomplish without the deadweight Russell. I don’t know how a tribe of 2 would work, or how they’d figure out challenges (I don’t think they could sit 4 people from the other tribes, so they just might have to do target practice challenges where everyone rotates but it’s ultimately one-on-one-on-one), but it’s nice to know that, after 25 seasons, Survivor still has the ability to surprise.

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Mansing lost again. They sent home Angie instead of useless Russell. They’ll probably lose again next week if they’re not put out of their misery by a merge.

That’s about all there is to say about this week’s episode of Survivor, which was almost as boring as last week’s. But it’s not the producer’s fault. They tried to get me interested in the goings-on of the other tribe. Jeff Kent is apparently a very good strategic player, cornering Penner into admitting he has the idol (they did notice the missing emblem from the rice container after all!), then agreeing to align with him with the elusive “four-fingered handshake” that means he hasn’t really given his word at all. On the yellow tribe, Michael continues to bleed all over the place (this time thanks to exploding goggles) and is now apparently a target for elimination, although Mansing still has 3 people on it, so the chance of actually getting to tribal council in the next 3 weeks is pretty slim.

That’s the trouble, really. You can show all of the strategizing at camp as much as you want, but none of it really matters unless there’s the end game of tribal council to give it some weight. Things shift so much in this game (last week, Lisa was on the outs, this week, she’s the centrepiece of a “blindside” that will never come). Abi is apparently batshit crazy, as she snaps at RC for reassuring her that she’s “not a liability” (although you have to lose once in awhile for anyone to be a liability), and then betrays her “trust” by seeking out and finding the idol and sharing it with Peter. Who’s Peter, you ask? I have no idea. I’ve literally never seen him before. You know what I said in the first week about the smaller tribes allowing for more facetime for individual players? Well, forget that. That only works if the tribes are relatively equal. The yellow and red tribes could be filled with jungle fairies for all I know, because none of what goes on that those tribes matters as long as Mansing keeps losing.

And, unless the Survivor gods take pity on them and implement a merge next week – which seems unlikely because it would result in uneven tribes – they’ll lose again next week. As much as I enjoy Malcolm and Denise’s alliance of opposites, they were stupid to get rid of Angie. She might have struggled getting a puzzle piece in 2 feet of water, but after that miserable failure, she at least had the common decency to step back. Russell pushes his way to the front and single-handedly loses the challenge for his tribe. And somehow he’s still seen as the “stronger” one? It doesn’t matter how strong you are if you can’t implement that strength in a useful manner. Dude couldn’t even get up a ladder. Please.

Next week, I predict that Mansing will lose again, they’ll be forced to finally cut Russell loose, and then they’ll split Malcolm and Denise onto the two intact tribes, thereby voiding an alliance that we watched being built among the pathetic excuse for a tribe that is Mansing.

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After a promising season premiere, this week’s episode faltered a bit. All the benefits of having smaller tribes that I talked about last week (more face time for individual players, more intense interactions between alliance members) are rendered moot when the tribe that’s getting the most airplay is so boring. Compounded by the fact that episodes of torrential downpours are limited in their dramatic potential anyway because everyone just sits around in their shelter, and episode 2 didn’t have much of a chance.

The hapless blue tribe (aka Matsing) was once again front and centre, first in the post-tribal council discussions, then in the whining about the rain, and then, when they lost their second immunity challenge, in the discussions around camp, and finally, in tribal council. I’d say the episode had about an 80-20 split, with that 20% being divided between the red and yellow tribes and the immunity challenge. For all that time, I can’t say I know or care too much more about anyone on the blue tribe. Russell’s new strategy is to not be the leader, but that was his strategy last time and it blew up in his face. Angie’s fake boobs are threatening to Roxy, and so is her cuddling with Malcolm. Roxy might not be very good at expressing herself in a way that doesn’t come across as paranoid/crazy, but she is right that the tribe should be worried about that alliance. On the other hand, if they lose the next challenge and get down to 3, it’s hard to imagine that the Survivor Powers That Be would be able to avoid an early merge. 2 people might be a big deal in a group of 4, but it doesn’t amount to much in a new tribe of 10. Additionally, it’s more than likely that the “random” new tribe assignments would split up the budding couple (or, perhaps, the budding “brother-sister relationship”), so the whole thing probably will wind up being a big old nothing. In any case, even after Angie’s ridiculous “cookies” answer to Jeff’s question about what could be improved at camp, the tribe decides to kick loud-mouthed Roxy off the island. Not surprising, despite the number of minutes of screen time spent on trying to convince us that there was a chance of Angie going home.

Meanwhile, Penner finds the hidden immunity idol, which the Survivor producers cleverly hid as the decoration on top of the rice container. I applaud the shakeup of the standard immunity idol formula, but I question the plausibility of no one noticing that their rice lid is now suspiciously unadorned. Maybe someone did notice and Penner came up with a good explanation, but we were too busy watching the boring goings-on at Matsing to get to see this revelation. Also, at the yellow tribe, Lisa continues to alienate herself by sitting at the well alone and complaining that she doesn’t fit in.

Next week, Michael gets hurt again! Hopefully less blue tribe!

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Survivor‘s back! And this time, they brought back people who had to leave because of injury! AND there’s “secret celebrities” Lisa Welchel from The Facts of Life and SF Giant and notorious jerk, Jeff Kent. 5 “special” people, 13 regulars, 1 SURVIVOR.

Actually, this was a pretty fun premiere episode. There looks to be quite a few interesting castaways, very few jerks, and an awful lot of strategizing. Michael (he of the burned hands on Survivor Australia) commented that the instant alliances were new to him, and it’s true that somewhere along the line (perhaps in my 5-10 seasons of hiatus from watching the show), everyone decided that the only way to win was to make an alliance with the first person you set eyes on and stick with that until the end, come hell or high water. I’ve never been a fan of that strategy, mainly because it makes for boring television, but it’s going to take a miracle for any of the new players to divert from this apparently tried-and-true formula. Because, here’s the thing about Survivor – after 25 seasons, every single person who plays thinks that they are an expert. The three “returning” players think they have an edge, and some of the new players might play lip service to their supposed “advantage”, but what does this edge really amount to? They want to keep Russell around because he can fish and build a fire? Don’t need to have played Survivor to know how to do that. Plus, all of the returning players have obviously had so much smoke blown up their collective asses that they all honestly believe that they’re Survivor “legends” (as Michael put it). What’s refreshing is that, unlike in earlier seasons where they brought back people like Boston Rob, none of the new players seem all that starstruck. In fact, the plan across the board seems to be to keep them around as long as they’re useful and then cut them loose as soon as possible. I like it.

The other two “celebrities” both decide to keep their identities a secret, correctly deducing from earlier seasons that people don’t like it when millionaires win Survivor. I agree with Jeff Kent (never thought I’d say that) when he said that it shouldn’t be about who needs the money, but who earned it, but he’s at least realistic enough to know that that argument is unlikely to fly on the island. Of the two, Jeff is also definitely playing the best game. He’s secretive while interacting with the group. I laughed when he hurt his knee in the first 5 minutes but said it would be okay because he’s “played hurt his entire career,” but he did seem to do a good job of covering it up. While Jeff isn’t paranoid about being discovered (and really, why would he be? Unless there’s a die-hard Giants fan on the team, he hasn’t played for 5 years and he pretty much looks like an average joe), Lisa is sabotaging herself by expecting to be caught at every moment. It’s true, Michael recognized her, but no one else did. Probably no one else had even heard of The Facts of Life. I barely had, and it’s only because I know George Clooney got his start there. I’ve never actually seen an episode. Look around you, Lisa, these people weren’t even born during your heyday, so just chill out. Join the team, engage in conversation, and quit acting like you’ve got a deep dark secret to hide. I think Michael’s advice about just telling people was apt, but she’d have none of it. If the yellow tribe loses, she’ll be the first to go.

And yes, much like I haven’t learned many of the players’ names, I also haven’t yet bothered to learn the names of the tribes. Luckily, this is rendered moot since the producers helpfully got everyone to dress in colour-coded outfits so I don’t even need to see a buff to figure out who’s on which tribe. I wasn’t sure how the three-tribe thing was going to work out, but so far I really like it. With small tribes of 6 people each, you get a better feel for the dynamic and (almost) everyone got a decent amount of face time. There’s usually a couple of people who make it to the merge without me having any recollection of ever seeing them before, but I don’t think that will happen this time.

The only problem with 3 tribes is that the immunity challenges are a lot less dramatic. Watching people try to not lose just isn’t as exciting as watching people try to win. This is a minor complaint though, as I expect they’ll have to merge into two tribes within the next few weeks, once one tribe gets down to about 4 people. Russell Swan’s blue tribe lost, thanks in large part to his “I’m not a leader but let me tell you what to do” idiocy in which he refused to listen to people’s strengths and had runners doing puzzles and whatnot. He absolutely deserved to go home, and probably would have, if Zane didn’t think he was Russell Hantz 2.0.

I really liked Zane at first. He seemed wacky (dare I say it – zany?) but clever, and you never knew what was going to come out of his mouth next. Sure, it wasn’t that smart to run around making alliances with everyone and then tell everyone that you’ve made alliances with everyone, but he was convinced at the absolute brilliance of his gameplay. Plus, the other castaways didn’t seem to mind all that much, looking at him as kind of a harmless little puppy. But then, after the challenge, Zane pulled out some reverse-psychology type crap in which he said that he should really be the one to go, since he can’t run for shit (later revealing it’s because he quit smoking the day that they got dropped off on the island). He reasoned that if he tells people to vote him out, they won’t vote him out, and then he’ll know for sure that he’s running the game. I’m sure it made sense in his nicotine-starved brains, but everyone else on the team just took the easy out and sent him packing. Can’t say I really blame them, but I don’t know how much longer I could handle Russell’s abrasive brand of non-leadership. We’ll see if they regret their decision.

Other things to look forward to: Michael’s definitely going to cut his hand off or something right? I laughed out loud at that montage of him hurting himself over and over, and it’s clear that the fall into the fire was not an isolated incident of bad luck. Someone needs to just take the machete away already before he maims someone else too.

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