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Season One Talk: Wolves and Cougars and Bears, Oh My!

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Where are the bushes of berries that he saw in the bear poo?

 

They're usually farther away from the chuck.  They like a little less salt in the environment, so farther inland.  But bears wander all over the place foraging, as they are opportunistic eaters.  They'd rather eat something they just come across, rather than have to run something down and kill it.  Generally, unless a bear is starving or protecting a cub, they will usually leave you alone.  So keeping your food inaccessible is a good idea.  Most of our problems in camp came from them getting into the garbage cans, so most people had large boxes built onto our fences, with a latching lid, to keep our garbage cans in.

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The preview for next week does not look good for Lucas.

Unless the producers and editors are yanking our chain hard he looks mentally dunzo or sucked in by a whirlpool.

I want to see him land one of those one hundred pound+ halibuts in his tarpy canoe before he taps out.

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The preview for next week does not look good for Lucas.

Unless the producers and editors are yanking our chain hard he looks mentally dunzo or sucked in by a whirlpool.

I want to see him land one of those one hundred pound+ halibuts in his tarpy canoe before he taps out.

Unless we find out otherwise, I think that the producers have been very truthful in the narrative. People that are close to tapping get a bit more camera time. They have shown us some of the ups and downs and emotional things that the guys have gone through. I don't feel that they have been exploitive because they understand that the human experience is what makes it compelling. You don't need to fluff or create drama. The thought that something is stalking you, is ALL they need. Plenti-o-drama and fear right there!

 

Regarding Lucas, he will probably come up with some dream of creating a shelter on the little island and fail at that and then become despondent. His eyes are bigger than his stomach at times, but he cannot break it down to smaller steps or alter his vision. Like the failed clay for the fire pit, which possibly could have been adapted in a new way for even better results (as people noted here). He is quite fixated (he even said so), on doing something a specific way and only that way. Lots of disappointment can happen with being unadaptable. 

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Please, History Channel give us a reunion show with the last 4 Aloners as the focus.

 

Lucas is so earnest to both his benefit and detriment.

 

Someone on Etsy... knit me a hat like Lucas' with cougar eyes and I will purchase and wear proudly.

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Did we really jump a bunch of days? The show started at what day 5 or 6, and then it was day 14? Did is misunderstand that?

Lucas said he estimated 4 days to make his canoe, and they stayed with him on that task the whole time for days 11-14 without jumping over to see what any of the other guys were doing during that time. Focusing on Lucas helped us see how he was progressing, but I agree that's a long time not to see any of the others.

 

 

Please, History Channel give us a reunion show with the last 4 Aloners as the focus.

And raffle off a party (or something) with Alan. He's a hoot.

Edited by Quilt Fairy
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I'm going to try to actually meet up with Alan, since he's close. And I know which Mexican restaurant he likes. :) No, seriously, I would love to interview him (I used to work for a newspaper) and get his story in here if I can.

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I'm going to try to actually meet up with Alan, since he's close. And I know which Mexican restaurant he likes. :) No, seriously, I would love to interview him (I used to work for a newspaper) and get his story in here if I can.

Awesome. I would love to hear more about the actual details of how things occurred and their understanding before they went onto the show. 

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I'm rooting for Alan myself and was even before he sang a few bars.  With a voice like that, he needs to try out for community theater or something. 

 

I still don't quite follow how all this is being filmed.  If the men are all in charge of their own camera work, who was filming Lucas when he was out on the lake in his boat?

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~I still don't quite follow how all this is being filmed.  If the men are all in charge of their own camera work, who was filming Lucas when he was out on the lake in his boat?~

 

My exact thought MLP!  There were multiple shots of him taken FROM the little island as he was headed towards it.  And then shots from somewhere on the shore of him paddling across the lake at quite some distance.  Makes no sense.  Are we to believe he first went there, set up his cameras, returned and started across?  That's silly!  What a waste of his time and energy if so.  To my mind it puts lie to the whole 'no crew' standard as it keeps being proven as not quite possible to believe.

 

That said...it has been quite a long time since any show has so captured my interest and has me counting down the days each week till it airs!  To me, they have a real winner here!  If it turns out there is a crew of some sort, hovering around in the distance to get get shots like the boat trip......I can accept that as long as they are not in contact and are unseen/unknown to the contestant.  But I have been willing to accept the premise as stated and it saddens me to find, like most reality shows, it's not what it seems after all.

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Do you think that maybe "alone" means alone from so many yards from the nearest camera? I mean, maybe the cameras were high powered used from a distance... it's been a while since I've kept up with lens capability, etc...

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They each have four cameras, and they were told how to set them up and film themselves walking towards them and so forth. In this case, he set one up with a fairly wide view of the lake before he took off. This was a test paddle, so he probably looked to see what the camera would catch and tried to stay in frame. If you look objectively at how many seconds of footage there were from the shore, you realize he didn't even have to stay in frame forever.

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I'm going to try to actually meet up with Alan, since he's close. And I know which Mexican restaurant he likes. :) No, seriously, I would love to interview him (I used to work for a newspaper) and get his story in here if I can.

 

That would be SO cool, cooksdelight!

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I absolutely love this show.  Even if there is "help" with the camera stuff, which I believe there is not and the guys set there cameras up themselves, this show is head and shoulders above any other "reality" show out there.

 

1. no dramatic music

2. no "coming up next" or rehashing of what we just saw before commercial break (which I never watch live TV so I ff though commercials)

3, no producer added drama

3. no stupid voice over telling us they could die if they don't (fill in the blank)

 

This show is real raw emotions and reactions to the environment  around them. 

 

Love it.

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or rehashing of what we just saw before commercial break (which I never watch live TV so I ff though commercials)

Sadly, there was  a really long sequence last night after commercial showing Lucas bringing his canoe frame down to the beach, which though half as long as his original footage still rehashed nearly the whole thing.  I wonder if the storm keeping everyone hunkered in their shelters didn't give production much interesting footage to use for that day, so they had to fill time somehow.

 

And they did have a bit of a cliffhanger cutaway when the one guy tripped on the beach and we went to commercial with the cockeyed view from the dropped camera and a faintly disturbing moaning sound, only to come back to find it was really just a klutzy "oopsie" and not a bad fall as implied.

 

But I completely agree, there is far, far less of that crap on this show than on most other reality shows, and that is part of why I like it so much.

 

I think those eyes are taped on his hat?  I thought we saw him putting the eyes on after making camp.

 

Damn you, show, for making me feel sympathy for wolf boy.  He's becoming a real person to me.

 

Love Alan.  He's just gold.  Loved the singing this week, and the "I'm going crazy" fake-out from last week.  He reminds me of that older driver from Ice Road Truckers that had such a gentle sense of humor and a calm outlook on life.

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A lot of shock here concerning the reaction to the men being alone. I appreciate the fact that they miss their families but with all the crying, this must be a serious need people have to communicate with others. (Umm, guess that's why we're here) The idea of having a Wilson ball might make a lot of sense.

O.K. we have the guys eating a fish, seaweed, crabs, snails... but did I miss anyone trapping or hunting yet? Heavens - does no one have wire to set snares? We have now two weeks and I don't see them foraging for food. We watched last night when one of them finds bear scat with berries. Well, hello??? I would have thought they would all be exploring and scrounging the woods.

We got a kick out of Lucus when he realized the boat worked. For the life of me, I could not figure out what he was doing during the build as I had envisioned him using bark for the skin of the boat. Great work there.

Are there any restrictions on killing animals for this show? Guess I would have tried to sharpen a lot of narrow branches and form a circle of them facing out around the camp to buy some extra time in case of an attack. I'd also have some long spears as an extra defense. What have I missed here?

Edited by Curious5

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We have now two weeks and I don't see them foraging for food.

Yes, one guy got an entire backpack full of fresh mushrooms. Alan is regularly eating whatever he finds... seawood, snails, worms, etc.

As to killing the animals, I think that might be on a self-defense only. Especially if it's not hunting season for that particular animal.

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Some of them do have bows and arrows, and in one of the teasers for the show you can see someone shooting an arrow, but it's impossible to make out who.

 

I agree that there's little emphasis on finding food, which I thought they would spend a lot of time on. There's also not much emphasis on building a more permanent shelter. This show is really hard to define.

 

Les Stroud films himself all the time for his show, and he's explained how he has to set the camera up, start filming, walk away, come back and get the camera, rinse and repeat, etc. etc. It's not hard to believe that the guys were taught how to do this. I do wonder if some of the aerial shots are done by drone.

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I haven't been paying enough attention to the overheads, but drone shots are easy to spot. That would be a good use for them, that's for sure.

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As to killing the animals, I think that might be on a self-defense only. Especially if it's not hunting season for that particular animal.

 

I don't remember when deer season is on the island, I think its fall, but you need to have tags for them.  I'm pretty sure that there isn't any particular season on birds, and there are a ton of grouse, mallards and pigeons out there.  Maybe not mallards if its fall.  Grouse is really tasty, cooks up just like chicken.   Hard to sneak up on though, and it doesn't look like any of them have a shotgun.  They can blend right into the bush, and scare the crap out of you when they explode out and up when startled.  But they are yummy when you can get one.  The mallards on the island tend to taste like fish, although I haven't ever had farmed duck, so maybe they all do, I don't know.

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No, farmed ducks don't taste like fish. The meat is rather sweet and fat and yummy. But is it safe to eat pigeons? I did research to see if one could cook seagulls because I thought THEY would taste like fish. But every site said they are not for eating because they are full of germs and whatever stuff that can make you deathly ill. So I was thinking pigeons were the same as seagulls. Do you know?

Edited by ethalfrida

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We ate pigeons a few times, there isn't much too them.  Wild pigeons are different than the city ones though, and are pretty much like any other game bird out there.  I wouldn't eat a city pigeon, as they are basically rats with wings, but wild ones were ok.  I hate seagulls with a passion though, and the idea of eating one never occurred to me.

Edited by muffkins
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Next time cast some single guys who won't pine for their families. These guys act as if they have been away from home for months.

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When Alan talked about hunter-gathers being efficient rather than lazy, I thought "Wow, Jim on 'The Island' was one extremely efficient guy!" ;-)

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Next time cast some single guys who won't pine for their families. These guys act as if they have been away from home for months.

I think Lucas is single. He hasn't mentioned a wife or kids, and if I remember correctly, in his flashback we saw his parents and his little brother. He did talk a lot about his dad in this episode, but it felt like it was less about him missing his family and more about the inspiration they've been in his life.

But I seriously understand missing your family. I go away for a business trip, and five days later I want to see my kid, even though I've talked to him on the phone. I just can't imagine being this isolated. And yeah, I know, you sign up for it blah blah blah. I think we're just seeing reality hit.

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Some of them do have bows and arrows, and in one of the teasers for the show you can see someone shooting an arrow, but it's impossible to make out who.

 

I agree that there's little emphasis on finding food, which I thought they would spend a lot of time on. There's also not much emphasis on building a more permanent shelter. This show is really hard to define.

 

 

 

Sam has a quiver (of arrows) in his tent

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When Alan talked about hunter-gathers being efficient rather than lazy, I thought "Wow, Jim on 'The Island' was one extremely efficient guy!" ;-)

The only thing Jim gathered was food supplied by the others, when he stuffed it in his mouth. :)

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"That's what she said!"

Michael Scott

Seriously, who was the Michael Scott they were quoting at the beginning? Just seeing the name made me laugh.

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Was "The Island" the show where they just dumped a bunch of guys on an island and told them to fend for themselves? I only saw a bit of the first episode so I don't know the storylines.

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Was "The Island" the show where they just dumped a bunch of guys on an island and told them to fend for themselves? I only saw a bit of the first episode so I don't know the storylines.

Yes, you didn't miss anything.

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I love that the setting is the Pacific Northwest/Cascadia, welcome to my back yard, boys!  It's beautiful, lush, resource-rich, and utterly unforgiving for those who are not prepared.  There's a reason (lots of reasons) why DB Cooper probably died the night he jumped out of the hijacked plane or within 1-2 days of doing so. 

 

I'm only two episodes in and I'm trying to catch up.  So as of the end of the 2nd episode:

 

I love Sam and Lucas.  Lucas has his stuff together and looks like he's doing just fine.  Sam playing with the camera and having fun howling with the wolves - adorable.  I've gone camping and being lulled to sleep by the howls of nearby wolves is a great experience.  Wayne seems to be doing well also.  
 

As for the rest...what a bunch of weenies!  It wasn't even afternoon on the first day when they were already crying for mommy!  Jeez,  I go to the office each day for longer than that and somehow manage to not get homesick.  

 

Edit:  Caught up to current episode.  Welp, so much for Wayne.  Still rooting for Sam and a little for Lucas and his eye hat, and I want to see a spinoff show:  Backwoods Cooking With Alan.

Edited by GreyBunny
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Yes, you didn't miss anything.

Now, now Cooksdelight I know that you are still nauseous from Jim and his sidekick, but don't let that mar your memory of the really good things gleaned from that show.  If one watches the Island they will find out that the cameramen are the BEST out there of any person on a reality show, the ED doc was great too, and Benji saves sea turtles builds beds and shelters. Watching Savior Benji and his beautiful blue eyes was worth it to some degree. lol

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I think the problem with this concept is that the men don't know how long they'll be out there.  Didn't the producers tell them it could be a year?  I think that's why they're tapping out.  See, being alone, in silence forces you to really think about your choices.  There's no TV or music or anything else to distract you.  And this show isn't like "Naked and Afraid" because at least in that show the folks aren't alone, even if their partner taps out, there is the camera crew.  Also, maybe these guys aren't used to be by themselves, maybe they went straight from their family home, to their home with a wife, then kids, so maybe they were never really alone in their daily lives.

Edited by Neurochick

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I've gone camping and being lulled to sleep by the howls of nearby wolves is a great experience.

Well, GreyBunny, it sounds like you could have given our 'experts' some pointers.

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I think the problem with this concept is that the men don't know how long they'll be out there.  Didn't the producers tell them it could be a year.  I think that's why they're tapping out.

 

SO agree with you! I've been watching this with my husband and he gets really irritated when people tap out, especially all the ones in the first week. He kept pointing to Naked and Afraid, and how many of them make it the full 3 weeks, even if their partner leaves. I thought about it for awhile and then I told him - "There is no end point". That's what it is. They have no idea who else is still out there and how long they could conceivably be there for. That, and the extreme isolation, must be very challenging mentally. I still think a few of them really wimped out, but I'm willing to cut these guys some slack. 

 

I'm already wondering about next season (if there is one) and if there will be a whole new batch of new dudes who really want to up the ante after watching this season. 

 

I'd be happy with any of the final four winning, but I've been rooting for Alan since he did his Julia Child impression with the slug. 

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I think the problem with this concept is that the men don't know how long they'll be out there.

I think that's a big part of it and the other part is the possibility of danger lurking with no "safety in numbers."  Also they have no control of either.  They either cope or quit.  They can't go visit another guy for some respite and then go back to their own camp.

 

I'm a solitary person who lives alone.  I almost never talk on the phone.  It's not at all unusual for me to go days without seeing another person or even speaking aloud.  This bothers me not at all because I "socialize" on line and, if I so choose, I can change my situation by calling someone or picking up my car keys and going out.  However, I'd have the screaming meemies if I had to live like that out in the woods where I'd feel threatened by unseen dangers made worse by isolation.  The guys on Alone don't have a lot of choices.  Cope or quit is pretty much it.

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My guess is the producers knew that would be the struggle, and that's why:

 

A) Nearly everyone is married with young children -- because that exacerbates the need to get home -- and

 

B) They were put in a fairly resource-rich environment with a good number of survuval tools to help them -- because difficulty surviving in the envirnonment *isn't* the main challenge.

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I agree, on other shows, there are camera men, but here they are alone alone, no camera men. Here they can die if they make a mistake, help is not near by. Survival is harder because they can't take chances. Yes, on the other shows, they can't talk or interact with the camera men, but they exist and are eyes.

 

I do wonder if they have to call in once a day, just to make sure they know they are alive or maybe their film is  wified to the crew. still they are not around the corner it can take hours to get help. 

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Even if they are able to upload their film footage, they still need batteries to run the cameras. Whether they actually go far enough to need more batteries for this season or not, there has to be a procedure in place.

 

This is becoming more and more like Solitary (the game show whose name I finally remembered), where the contestants were locked by themselves in little rooms and had to perform a series of physically exhausting (and frequently diabolically cruel) challenges. It really only mattered that you weren't the first one to quit, because that person was eliminated, but they didn't tell you when you were safe, so sometimes people went hours longer than they had to.

 

I read the description for this week's show, and it contains some pretty bleak info:

there's another violent rainstorm and apparently Lucas has to abandon his canoe miles away from his camp.

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I think the problem with this concept is that the men don't know how long they'll be out there.  Didn't the producers tell them it could be a year?  I think that's why they're tapping out.  See, being alone, in silence forces you to really think about your choices.  There's no TV or music or anything else to distract you.  And this show isn't like "Naked and Afraid" because at least in that show the folks aren't alone, even if their partner taps out, there is the camera crew.  Also, maybe these guys aren't used to be by themselves, maybe they went straight from their family home, to their home with a wife, then kids, so maybe they were never really alone in their daily lives.

 

 

This is becoming more and more like Solitary (the game show whose name I finally remembered), where the contestants were locked by themselves in little rooms and had to perform a series of physically exhausting (and frequently diabolically cruel) challenges. It really only mattered that you weren't the first one to quit, because that person was eliminated, but they didn't tell you when you were safe, so sometimes people went hours longer than they had to.

 

 

I think for this show they know that they just go until they are the last. And they know the crew will come get them once the second last man taps out.  I wouldn't think they'd make the person keep going longer than that either with all the risks involved. What I'd love to see is the destined winner, get up and start his day like any other, and suddenly a crew appears and surprises them with "you are the winner!".  Maybe some musician comes along to set the mood and a nice looking model hands him a giant cheque. Actually that may be too much all at once for someone living alone so long. But I'd love to see the reaction. Even if its just the boat coming closer and closer and the winner thinking "I wonder why they are coming to me?"....probably not allowing themselves to believe they won and thinking it could be some kind of emergency  (storm coming..or some other warning)

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I don't think they are going to be as cruel as Solitary. In all likelihood they will notify the winner as soon as the 9th guy taps out. But I was using that as an example to say that I think the lack of an end date is what makes the show interesting. Even the aloneness, if you knew it was for a specific time, is doable. You start making marks in a stick like Alan has done. It's the not knowing where you stand that's the killer.

 

I hope I hope I hope I hope that cooksdelight gets to interview Alan. I really want to hear his take on the environment, the set-up and the difficulties of the competition. and why he decided to compete in the first place. Oh, and slug recipes.

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Love this show. Mitch is my anti-drug. You can just tell he has encyclopedic knowledge of bushcraft and survival. He's definitely my pick to win. Also his dreads are fabulously low maintenance. Hopefully the fishnet will sustain him for a while, although I'm not sure when the salmon runs begin and end around there.

 

Sam is a bit young and silly but I like him. Very earnestly goofy and has an obvious skillset. That said, if my husband did this when I was super-pregnant, I'd murder him. I was impressed with how well his shelter held up in the storm. From what I'm reading from fellow experts, it seems that many survivalists are particularly impressed by his shelter out of the final four, as well as Alan's.

 

Lucas I started off liking a lot because he's from my neck of the woods, but his insecurities might make him not long for this challenge. Can't wait to see what happens with his boat tonight, although I thought it was strange that he bothered making a boat before making a cabin. He could have constructed the cabin using the mud to fill in the walls, then make a fire pit in the middle of the room with ceiling ventilation. He seems to be a bit flaky with all his grand ideas.

 

Alan is amazing. Agree with everyone who said he should have his own cooking show! Seems like he could find food anywhere. He has also proven excellent at entertaining himself to stave off loneliness, which I think is critical.

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From what I'm reading from fellow experts, it seems that many survivalists are particularly impressed by his shelter out of the final four, as well as Alan's

.Where are you reading this?

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It's on a survivalist message board - not sure if I'm allowed to reveal the name or link. I googled "survivalist message board" to find it, because I wanted to see what actual survival experts thought of the show :)

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Alan... I love you to death. You and the bald eagle in all your nakedness, telling us that we spend too much time in front of the screen, pushing the button.

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Yeah, Alan was great tonight. They featured him so much that I started to get worried that he was gonna tap out. I figure that he gave them so much to work with that they needed to give him some air time at some point. I think Lucas is next, then we are in for the long haul. Mitch is still my fav though. But, there is much more to Alan than on the surface. He is really well read and can quote from these literary works. Does anyone know was his background is? Theatre, English prof? He is really an interesting guy.

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Yeah, Alan was great tonight. They featured him so much that I started to get worried that he was gonna tap out. I figure that he gave them so much to work with that they needed to give him some air time at some point. I think Lucas is next, then we are in for the long haul. Mitch is still my fav though. But, there is much more to Alan than on the surface. He is really well read and can quote from these literary works. Does anyone know was his background is? Theatre, English prof? He is really an interesting guy.

I started imagining what it is like in the editing room, 6 episodes in: "OK, we lead with Alan, then Lucas and the canoe, back to Alan, Mitch and his moldy socks, more Alan, Lucas having diarrhea, more Alan, Lucas breaking down and crying, who's left? Oh, yeah, Sam, a little bit of Sam, then finish up with Alan."

 

"I'll have the #14 limpet kabob with caramelized slug gravy." Alan - so much love.

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Alan is SUCH a delight.  He has an interesting, and interested mind; he is able to amuse and entertain himself - and us!   But he also knows a lot about surviving, and has set himself up to maximize his chances,

 

The rain is getting to these guys just as much as the isolation is, I think. 

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Sam has just gotten so little air time. I wonder if he just didn't record as much as the other guys. Curious.

I couldn't believe that Alan basically talked to himself for eight hours. I was wondering why he didn't take a nap, but I guess sleeping off and on isn't really what you want to do, either. I wouldn't make it. Lol

Also, the episode went out of its way to show how well everybody was eating this week, but it looks like next week everybody is starving. Wonder if that's just editing or something comes up in the next few days that changes their food sourcing.

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