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On an Island of One: Unpopular Opinions of Survivor

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On 1/14/2020 at 6:47 AM, simplyme said:

I like the new jury format. I hated having to sit through some of the dumb questions or comments from jurors, especially the whole "Pick a number between..." thing. Nine (or seven or whatever) people asking questions took a lot longer to show, too, than the current edited discussion.

I am not a fan of what I like to call the Zeke Jury format (I call it the Zeke format because he was the most dominate jury member during the first time it happened, he drove the conversation).  I like when a pissed off bitter jury member would go off (Sue), you do not really get that with the new format.

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13 hours ago, LadyChatts said:

It's not that I mind idols, I just think they take away the strategy part of the game. 
 

IMHO it depends upon, for lack of a better term, the degree of idolatry: 😉

  • One idol in play at a time?  Definitely introduces a new strategic element, even if it’s only trying to figure out ways to flush it.
  • Two idols in play at the same time?  Strategies suddenly got several times more complex.
  • Three idols, two advantages, and a nullifier in a pear tree?  Overkill.  Cirie is going to run onto the set any moment now and stab you with a pointy stick.
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Here's another one: winners should only be invited back one other time. Once they win, they get one return invite the show may or may not use, and then they disappear. They've won. There's no reason for the show to keep bringing them back, because the chances of them pulling a Sandra on returning player seasons are minuscule (Tony isn't in that boat, because it was all winners: someone was going to win again).

Ethan had a great season on Africa, then was voted out embarrassingly early in both All Stars and Winners at War. I get he had a good story this time, and was in a different phase of his life. But yet, the outcome remained the same: he was voted out embarrassingly early. Was that necessary to see twice?

I'm just not clamoring to see Adam try to play the pen/the tribal council set/Jeff himself as an idol because they thought he made "good TV." Or Sophie be another mid-game boot, because now everyone realizes what a threat she is. Or them to milk one last drop out of Ben's service to his country (and resulting post-traumatic stress).

I think the entire Winners at War cast should be retired, and that includes newer winners. They won, they got their shot to come back, now they're done. If they want to invite back Mike Holloway and Chris Underwood (why?), be my guest. They haven't had their second shot. The others: please, no.

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On 5/21/2020 at 9:13 AM, Eolivet said:

Here's another one: winners should only be invited back one other time. Once they win, they get one return invite the show may or may not use, and then they disappear. They've won. There's no reason for the show to keep bringing them back, because the chances of them pulling a Sandra on returning player seasons are minuscule (Tony isn't in that boat, because it was all winners: someone was going to win again).

Ethan had a great season on Africa, then was voted out embarrassingly early in both All Stars and Winners at War. I get he had a good story this time, and was in a different phase of his life. But yet, the outcome remained the same: he was voted out embarrassingly early. Was that necessary to see twice?

I'm just not clamoring to see Adam try to play the pen/the tribal council set/Jeff himself as an idol because they thought he made "good TV." Or Sophie be another mid-game boot, because now everyone realizes what a threat she is. Or them to milk one last drop out of Ben's service to his country (and resulting post-traumatic stress).

I think the entire Winners at War cast should be retired, and that includes newer winners. They won, they got their shot to come back, now they're done. If they want to invite back Mike Holloway and Chris Underwood (why?), be my guest. They haven't had their second shot. The others: please, no.

Where Ethan's concerned, I'm wondering is that they both wanted an early winner (since Hatch and Tina were axed before filming), and as you said, he had a good story.  I do think Ethan, like most old schoolers, couldn't keep up with the pace and the now of the game.  It seemed he was more on relationships and alliances being solid than anything else.  Parvati said she only kept Adam because he and Ethan were friends, but that voting Natalie out probably hurt her game.  It likely hurt Ethan's. 

I don't know that I'd be opposed to some winners returning from this season, but Sandra, Parvati, Boston Rob, and Tony definitely don't need to return.  Tony got really lucky this season.  The fact that he was the 2nd boot during Game Changers shows what will happen if luck isn't on his side next time.  And I wouldn't be opposed to seeing Amber again, but she likely would have a rough go of it even without Rob around, just for being married to the guy.  I actually wouldn't mind seeing Nick, Sarah, or Adam again.  And I'd love to see Yul, although I don't think he'd do it again.  I don't know if there's anyone else, though.  I personally don't care to see Tyson, Jeremy, Kim, Denise, or Ben again.  I don't know about Natalie, my feelings for her changed a little based on some of the post-show stuff.      

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I just don't care for Tony's gameplay.

He may be a GOAT or contender, he may be a hugely impressive winner, and he seems like a genuinely nice guy IRL from the brief snippets I've seen.

But I don't like the "always on, always hustle, no rest" style of play. And given production's preference for gamebots, I suspect we'll see a lot more of the psych ops tricks and devotion to never sleeping.

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7 minutes ago, AncientNewbie said:

I just don't care for Tony's gameplay.

For me, I liked it better the second time than the first. I think it's because it seemed like Tony was genuinely part of everyone's alliance at around F8 a way that he wasn't in Cagayan. In both of his winning seasons, the post-merge storyline was all about him, which took a lot of my interest and suspense away. I think my problem is less with Tony and his wins, and more with the fact that the editors can't seem to resist showing everything about his game at the expense of everyone else and the games they're playing. I realize there are only so many minutes in an episode, but I wish we got to learn more about the strategies and gambits that fail.

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19 hours ago, Hera said:

For me, I liked it better the second time than the first. I think it's because it seemed like Tony was genuinely part of everyone's alliance at around F8 a way that he wasn't in Cagayan. In both of his winning seasons, the post-merge storyline was all about him, which took a lot of my interest and suspense away. I think my problem is less with Tony and his wins, and more with the fact that the editors can't seem to resist showing everything about his game at the expense of everyone else and the games they're playing. I realize there are only so many minutes in an episode, but I wish we got to learn more about the strategies and gambits that fail.

I get this and agree.

At the same time, I'm like the fan of old leather helmet American football complaining about the legalization of the forward pass. What Tony's doing is impressive, and subverting the rules of the game is part of the game, but over here on my island of one, I'm just more of a fan of what I'm used to and Tony turns the knob up to 15, past my comfort level. I can't quite put my finger on it but in a wholly subjective way it's not "my" Survivor.

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I don't know if this is unpopular or not, but upon doing my quarantine rewatch - I kinda forgot about Keith Nale and my love for that guy.  Not exactly a strategist, but an awesome all around guy. 

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Burn me at the stake if you will, but I am rewatching HvV and I still don't hate Russel. I think he played this game really well the first two times he was on it. That third outing was a mistake. 

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1 hour ago, sara416 said:

Burn me at the stake if you will, but I am rewatching HvV and I still don't hate Russel. I think he played this game really well the first two times he was on it. That third outing was a mistake. 

...and Hantz’s performance in his second outing was pure luck; remember - Russell played his first two seasons back-to-back, which gave him the inestimable advantage of nobody in HvV having had the opportunity to observe his gameplay style in Samoa.  
If Hantz’s HvV compatriots had been afforded the chance to see Russell’s game MO before hitting the beach with him, I’d mightily suspect they would’ve sent him down the TC Walk of Shame sooner rather than later.

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@Nashville I agree. All they knew was that he was placed on the Villians team for a reason. It was definitely good fortune for him because they would have been gunning for him a lot sooner if they had seen his gameplay in his first season. I still don't hate him on either one of these seasons. 

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I never hated Russell either. 

I tend to agree with Nashville as well, because Russell was on Aussie Survivor and they got rid of him as soon as possible because nobody wanted to deal with him and they way he played the game.  If I remember right he was voted out with an Idol as well.

 

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I don't hate Russell. I dislike his gameplay and his attempt to play that character IRL, but as time passes most of my disdain is aimed at CBS that thought we wanted two seasons of him being rude to people instead of focusing on most other people in the game.

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I disliked Russell more during HvsV and RI, but I'm re-watching Samoa, and honestly he didn't bug me at all.  If anything I think he played a better game than Natalie, and lost thanks to a bitter jury (I also hate people winning solely because of their social game, which is really what Natalie did).  Russell was a one trick pony who needed to learn not to play the same.freaking.game.every.time.he.played.  I think he thought, since no one saw Samoa before HvsV started filming, he could get away with his same game style.  His arrogance though really showed through.  I'd almost like to see Russell play again, although he's so notorious that I don't believe he'd really get a fair shot to play.  I've watched some of his Youtube channel and listened to him on podcasts, and I find him enjoyable in those venues.  I think he'd be one hell of a Big Brother player if no one knew who he was.  

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15 hours ago, LadyChatts said:

I disliked Russell more during HvsV and RI, but I'm re-watching Samoa, and honestly he didn't bug me at all.  If anything I think he played a better game than Natalie, and lost thanks to a bitter jury (I also hate people winning solely because of their social game, which is really what Natalie did).  Russell was a one trick pony who needed to learn not to play the same.freaking.game.every.time.he.played.  I think he thought, since no one saw Samoa before HvsV started filming, he could get away with his same game style.  His arrogance though really showed through.  I'd almost like to see Russell play again, although he's so notorious that I don't believe he'd really get a fair shot to play.  I've watched some of his Youtube channel and listened to him on podcasts, and I find him enjoyable in those venues.  I think he'd be one hell of a Big Brother player if no one knew who he was.  

 

Just curious why? some people can't do the total physical dominant thing, or rely on just being sneaky strats. so i think someone being able to charm the pants out of someone and basically be invisible as a threat to be a target, then to turn it around and try to win (esp. when people say they hate it) - is a tactic not a lot of people can deploy. ya gotta work w/what you've got and all of that right?

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1 hour ago, Daisy said:

 

Just curious why? some people can't do the total physical dominant thing, or rely on just being sneaky strats. so i think someone being able to charm the pants out of someone and basically be invisible as a threat to be a target, then to turn it around and try to win (esp. when people say they hate it) - is a tactic not a lot of people can deploy. ya gotta work w/what you've got and all of that right?

For me, I just don't like people who are playing the game (making alliances, side deals, backstabbing people) to get screwed by a bitter jury.  I was watching Exile Island recently, and Danielle made an interesting comment during the reunion show as to why she picked Aras over Terry to take to the final 2 (because her and Terry had a final 2 deal).  She said that Terry never had to vote anyone out, and that her and Aras were pretty equally responsible for the reason that the people on the jury were there.  Now, to be fair to Terry, he was blindsided on just about every vote, but point is, he didn't have to get his hands dirty.  And I think Terry's one of the worst players of the game, but he would have won for being a likable guy and not being Danielle or Aras.  When I watch these shows, I want to see actual game play, not just a popularity contest or who has the best sob story.  But, that's what it's become, and has been to an extent.  It's why I was thrilled when Tony won last season, and not Natalie.    

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24 minutes ago, LadyChatts said:

For me, I just don't like people who are playing the game (making alliances, side deals, backstabbing people) to get screwed by a bitter jury.  I was watching Exile Island recently, and Danielle made an interesting comment during the reunion show as to why she picked Aras over Terry to take to the final 2 (because her and Terry had a final 2 deal).  She said that Terry never had to vote anyone out, and that her and Aras were pretty equally responsible for the reason that the people on the jury were there.  Now, to be fair to Terry, he was blindsided on just about every vote, but point is, he didn't have to get his hands dirty.  And I think Terry's one of the worst players of the game, but he would have won for being a likable guy and not being Danielle or Aras.  When I watch these shows, I want to see actual game play, not just a popularity contest or who has the best sob story.  But, that's what it's become, and has been to an extent.  It's why I was thrilled when Tony won last season, and not Natalie.    

 

but i guess that's the thing (I mean I agree with you. i would like 100 percent never vote for someone who even came within 10 feet of giving me a sob story) - but that's also a big part of the game (and i think something Jeff also demeans) - not saying you're like Jeff or anything - but just. regardless of how "well" people say they are, they're gonna be bitter. even people who play the social game have to make side deals or do something dirty. - i think it's impossible to be completely "hands clean" in this game because chances are you would have said something, or done something (even if it was minute - how many times have we SEEN THAT) to cheese someone off and when you are left alone that bubbles in your mind until. Mountain. Molehill you can be a very awesome social butterfly/popular and still lose. (to be fair i've missed the last few seasons of survivor minus Winners at War so maybe there has been a complete "Social Butterfly Twist." 

I guess for me. game play include - social game. some people have to lean on it more than others where some people have none but lean on others. so i do get where you are coming from when it looks like it's ALL social and none of the stuff we both really appreciate (and for the record - I flat out thought Russell should have won. - but he didn't work on his social game at all. he was just being a jerk and thought being "good" = winning. and i've never thought that he was "robbed" - because in my mind - had he been a bit more gracious in either of his first two attempts, i think he wins. Because regardless of how ruthless Sandra has been (and she has said some pretty darn harsh stuff - most people love her.)

but. i do see your point. 
and i agree with you for the most part. 
but i just felt like debating. haha. 

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The one that I never got was why the people who love Parvati tend to hate Russell.  I always viewed them as two sides of the same coin.  Both always went out of their ways to be cruel to others (I am not talking about her on the most recent season because she was not like that).  Yet everyone says how great Parvati is and laughs along with her and how cruel she was.

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8 hours ago, Daisy said:

 

but i guess that's the thing (I mean I agree with you. i would like 100 percent never vote for someone who even came within 10 feet of giving me a sob story) - but that's also a big part of the game (and i think something Jeff also demeans) - not saying you're like Jeff or anything - but just. regardless of how "well" people say they are, they're gonna be bitter. even people who play the social game have to make side deals or do something dirty. - i think it's impossible to be completely "hands clean" in this game because chances are you would have said something, or done something (even if it was minute - how many times have we SEEN THAT) to cheese someone off and when you are left alone that bubbles in your mind until. Mountain. Molehill you can be a very awesome social butterfly/popular and still lose. (to be fair i've missed the last few seasons of survivor minus Winners at War so maybe there has been a complete "Social Butterfly Twist." 

I guess for me. game play include - social game. some people have to lean on it more than others where some people have none but lean on others. so i do get where you are coming from when it looks like it's ALL social and none of the stuff we both really appreciate (and for the record - I flat out thought Russell should have won. - but he didn't work on his social game at all. he was just being a jerk and thought being "good" = winning. and i've never thought that he was "robbed" - because in my mind - had he been a bit more gracious in either of his first two attempts, i think he wins. Because regardless of how ruthless Sandra has been (and she has said some pretty darn harsh stuff - most people love her.)

but. i do see your point. 
and i agree with you for the most part. 
but i just felt like debating. haha. 

Hey, nothing wrong with a little debate! 🙂  I will say that I don't think social gaming isn't necessarily a bad strategy, I just like to see something more than 'I got to know you!  I can name so much about you!' (seriously, I remember some old school bitter betty jury questions asking the final 2/3 'where am I from?  What's my kids name?  What's my favorite food?')  I just don't like to see people who strategize and back stab and make side deals get penalized by someone who should have seen it coming, or didn't bother to make their own moves.  I will say I also don't care for someone to win solely because they can just win challenges, but suck at the strategy part of it, too.  Yeah, I know it's "Outwit, Outplay, Outlast" and I'm probably not factoring in that whole tag line in what I want to see in a winner.  I don't want a key strategist to be a total asshole, either.  So basically I'm looking for a miracle lol  And regardless of what Probst tried to market, I don't believe changing the jury format to what we have now changed anyone from being bitter or for how they would vote if they did the jury format the old way.  Tony, Tommy, Ben, Wendell, and whoever won S38 (wow, that was Chris, I totally forgot-okay bad example since he hung out with all the jurors until the final six).  For the rest, though, they likely still would have won their respective seasons with the old jury format.  

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I always root for strong (physically and/or strategically strong) women to do well in this show, especially with the last several seasons all being won by men. I don't even care if they're confident bordering on cocky. I loved Natalie A in SJDS, rooted for Chrissy in HHH and still don't dislike Steph even after Guatemala. 

That being said, I'm just not a fan of Kelley Wentworth. And I have no idea why.

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On 9/2/2020 at 11:04 AM, sara416 said:

All they knew was that he was placed on the Villians team for a reason.

They didn't even really know that; Danielle for example was not a Villain for any reason whatsoever!

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On 2/13/2020 at 4:06 PM, violet and green said:

Super unpopular opinion: I was rather pleased when Ben won his season.

Oh, I totally agree. He made everyone loathe him then won. It was hilarious.

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I don't think Ben even made them loathe him; they just did it because they were terrible babies about him overhearing them targeting him. Ben was also really immature, but we didn't find that out until WaW. Compared to Chrissy and Devon, pretty much anyone would look like a functional adult.

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