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  1. I liked Ashley: she was playing her own game the best she could given her options. She knew Rob had to go, but her options were limited because the Buddy System prevented her from talking to Zapatera. From the edit, she’s the only one who tried, but Rob found out which put her on his radar. She won two crucial Immunities when she was eventually in Rob’s crosshairs. That Tribal (Top 5) was the last time Rob could play his Idol, so he was safe and Ashley knew it. At the Top 6 where Andrea was first voted out, Rob had Immunity. At the original Top 5, Ashley could have taken a shot at Rob, but her only option was to work with Grant and Natalie, and Grant was Rob’s “buddy” which limited/negated her time to talk to him. He also seemed pretty hoodwinked by Rob, given his reunion appearance. And even if she did pull this off, Rob would have had a duel the very next day against Andrea and Matt to get back into the game. Ashley was seconds behind Rob in the puzzle for Final Four Immunity. Even though she lost, her relationship with Natalie rivalled Rob’s, and there is a chance of forcing a tie with Phillip. Does Ashley beat Rob? Given how much the jury despised him, it is a solid possibility she’d be seen as a palatable alternative. There are tiny things Ashley could have done differently (build a stronger relationship with Phillip or Andrea), but even with those changes, her best shot at a win was to beat Rob at Final 4 where he’s unprotected, or use her relationship with Natalie to slide into the finals. tl;dr: I don’t think it’s accurate to lump Ashley into “Rob’s Zombies”.
  2. Minor quibble, but Kelly turned down HvV because she had just gotten a teaching job at a prestigious school. She said on a Podcast that she didn’t know the format, but that it turned out to be a good thing she declined considering what tribe she’d be on. They also asked her about Blood v Water, but her husband had some medical issues and couldn’t join her. It was All Stars that she was locked in for and quit her job: Production was 99% sure Shii Ann would back out over the contract or Jenna would back out because of her mother. Neither did, and Kelly was told that morning. Seems like they actually felt bad, and offered her a job in casting for Vanuatu. Kelly was my first ever Reality TV idol and I hope she comes back someday!
  3. 10 and 11 are good, but can be watched on their own as a small arc any time. They aren’t necessary set up for other seasons. I enjoyed 22 and 24, but many people do not. There are so many universally loved seasons to watch instead if you only have 10 slots. I agree 19 is good set up for 20, but you’ll catch on pretty quickly in season 20 what the character is all about, so I don’t think it’s necessary. There are some good seasons after 30, but save them for a rainy day. If you’re intent on 10, stick with 2-6-7-13-15-16-18-20-25-28. They are all very good on their own, and give necessary context for seasons that come after.
  4. This is oversimplifying things. The fact that only one woman and one person of colour - both being Candice - has won since Season 6 is alarming. It is enough data to show that the majority of voters will default to one type of winner, often in spite of talent. This idea that white people have "their own" cultural preferences is problematic. I think it'd be more apt to call it cultural bias. I don't begrudge people voting for who they like, but we should be critical about WHY we like what we like. It gets tiresome to see the same people represented over and over. Some evidence like "Fantasia and Ruben!" has been presented, but I think it shows that when viewership is higher (like in the earlier seasons) and thus more diverse, talent is more likely to come out on top. With smaller viewership, I think more talented people have been routinely passed over in favor white men. Personal preference can of course factor in (I personally had David and Trent as my winners) but it being such a trend suggests cultural bias. I think it would be a travesty for Cade or Caleb to win this season. I like the music they do too, but I can look past that to question if they're truly the best up there. If people are voting for genre over individual talent, then we may as well have a vote in the first week of the competition and call it a day. Based on body of work, Caleb and Michelle are the weakest left. Ada and Cade need to show they can do something else. But my predictions for next week's eliminations are Michelle, Jurnee and Dennis, and that 2/3s of that will be heartbreaking.
  5. I'm not saying it was the wrong call to let Char fix the zipper, nor was it the right call for Korina to decline more exposure. But to be eliminated over a designer who was essentially saved 3 times and then asked to help them destroy their work 12 hours later would royally suck, and I don't think Tim or the audience were fair in how they demonized her reaction. I doubt many people would handle that well on the best of days, let alone in a pressure cooker environment on little sleep with producers purposefully stirring the pot.
  6. Cade performed decently this week (although his voice had none of the nuance that song needs to sell the narrative), but meh. Like Seasons 9, 10, 11, 13 and 14 he will probably win over more versatile hardworking singers by trotting out the same genred performance every week and showing zero growth. But if I can get a few more Michael performances of this week's caliber then the season won't be a total bust.
  7. Sophie, Laura and Jourdan would disagree. The recent season winners don't seem to be based on "types". Keith is the only black winner since Cycle 14. I actually think India/Kyla and Tatiana/Khrystyana are more appropriate comparisons. India and Kyla have the youth and fashion look, while Tatiana (though I never got the appeal) and Krhystyana excel in professionalism and building a brand. I like both of them equally, but I think Khrystyana knows what it takes to use the ANTM platform. She is very aware of the camera yet comes across natural. I think she'd make better use of the title, while Kyla would be better off as a working model. Khrystyana should be on the "special booking" roster and Kyla on the "new talent" roster, if that makes sense. I also think Khrys' career will be boosted by a win, and Kyla's would be hurt.
  8. I'm quite possibly just predisposed to hating everything about her, but I thought it was tacky for Char to single out Stanley with a "good luck" when she left the runway. Very sad to see Kelly go. My bottom 3 was Char, Ken and Helen. It made me LOL that Helen said she'd never done anything like this before when her dress was fucking identical to her Season 12 Butterfly dress. Stanley, Edmond and Kelly's were definitely too plain, but at least well made and deserved to be safe. My Top 3 was Anthony, Merline and Candice, who I think was inexplicably passed over for the second week in a row. Ari's was pretty, but like last week, was too commonplace.
  9. Agreed. My personal Top 3 was Candice, Stanley and Amanda. Coming in 4th would have been Kimberly. So basically my personal bottom 3 on the Fall/Rookie team ended up being the top? I hope that isn't a harbinger for the rest of the season.
  10. It isn't a popular sentiment here, but I love Amanda. She has a very clear point of view and seems down to earth and likeable. Sean's final collection in S13 earned his win, but Amanda's work throughout the season was awesome. She leveraged her second chance to show what she can do, and now I'm hoping she has the experience to win.
  11. Well, two Survivor records were broken tonight: Caramoan is no longer my least favourite season and Bob is no longer the worst Winner. I get that Ben, like, did stuff. But it usually wasn't the right stuff and he was playing with idiots. I don't like her as a personality, but Chrissy was robbed. Survivor 35: Scavenger Hunt Island. My 8 year old self would've won handily, because I was boss at finding Easter eggs.
  12. I didn't mind that one existing because it was obviously a last minute twist to account for Joe's medevac, and it was treated as a Reward Challenge that Michele won and had equal odds of doing so (versus "oh look, I saw this underneath Michaela's feet"). I think the Advantages and Idols all need to have shorter expiry dates. That will keep the game interesting AND prevent another Cirie elimination. It's a win-win. Ashley was the last person who I didn't hate, so I'll probably wait to see who wins and then fast forward through the filler.
  13. I've said this elsewhere on here, but Kelly was a badass woman who didn't strike me as the type to want anybody going easy on her. They both went for the clue and NaOnka got it. Had she backed off because of Kelly's prosthetic, I would find that condescending. (The comments she made in confessionals after that were rude, but I didn't have a problem with the interaction itself, and I doubt Kelly did either). I thought Chase played a pretty terrible game, too. He had a lot of cards in the deck and still played poorly, whereas Fabio had very little to work with and made it to the end. It's such a tight race for who was worse that I can't get up in arms about the quitters getting to vote.
  14. Unpopular opinion, but NaOnka is my favourite player from Nicaragua after Brenda and Sash. Before she quit I think she was playing the best strategic game (especially after Alina/Marty/Brenda went to the jury), and I generally found her pretty harmless when it came to her interactions with others. Who knows how she'd be remembered now had she not quit. Alas...
  15. Claire, what's your side of the story? Amy: did you or did you not have a measuring tape? Margarita: I think you're lying. Sentell: something something that made it clear he wasn't listening. Kenya: eyeroll eyeroll snide comment. Like, I get that the twins are obnoxious, but I really hate when somebody is ganged up on. I thought Amy, Margarita and sadly, Kenya, came out of that looking way worse than Claire. Michael, to his credit, made an effort to apologize for how he handled the situation. I thought he really redeemed himself and was a class act. I do think Claire was backpedalling, but I also think her claims were a sensible lie and everyone else should've stopped fighting about it if they didn't want to "waste time" and "make it the twin show" as they claimed many times. Ugh.
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