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Tara Ariano

S34.E13: Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow

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Michaela is often held up as a "challenge beast" but I'm curious, has she ever won a challenge? I can't remember her winning in either this season or MGX.

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5 hours ago, Alapaki said:

The problem with Michaela's version of the "go fish" comment, as I see it, is that if she really was concerned enough about Brad being targeted to want to warn him, why didn't she just say "Brad, you're being targeted!".  Or, if she wanted to play coy, why not say "Brad, are you trying to work any angles?  What do you think about . . . . ".  Did she want deniability in case Brad brought it up at TC?  What would be the point?  Once he brings it up and plants the seed of doubt in the others the damage is done.  Her excuse just doesn't make sense. 

She explained to Rob C that she was hesitant to give Brad too much information. Which seems fair - next thing Brad is running down the beach announcing that she's flipping and she's the target. But she took responsibility for  her poor communication - I'd also think that a post-hoc lie would try to make her look less incompetent, lol.

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3 minutes ago, innocuouspuff said:

She explained to Rob C that she was hesitant to give Brad too much information. Which seems fair - next thing Brad is running down the beach announcing that she's flipping and she's the target. But she took responsibility for  her poor communication - I'd also think that a post-hoc lie would try to make her look less incompetent, lol.

But that still makes no sense.  If she conveyed the information to Brad that she claims to have intended to convey, then she would've risked Brad calling her out.

The only way she avoids that risk is if she fails to deliver the message she claims to have wanted to convey.

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Okay, I think I got this figured out ---

Sarah wants to vote out Aubry.

Tai tells Aubry he wants to vote out Sarah

Aubry tells Cirie that Tai wants to vote out Sarah.

Cirie tells Sarah that Tai is gunning for her, but Sarah doesn't believe it, beacuse she doesn't trust Aubry. Sarah tells Cirie about the Steal-a-vote advantage and says she will give it to Cirie to hold - this is supposed to prove how sure Sarah is that Tai will not vote Sarah out and also how loyal she is to Cirie.  

Cirie and Michaela start counting and Cirie is afraid that Sarah will be gone.  I do not know exactly how Cirie thought the votes would go - probably the three guys vote for Sarah, Sarah votes for Aubry.  Michaela and Cire don't want Aubry voted out and Aubry is apparently not voting for Sarah (otherwise, she wouldn't have told Cirie that Tai was voting for Sarah). Cirie wants Tai gone.  If the three guys vote for Sarah,  Cirie, Michaela and Aubry vote for Tai, and Sarah votes for Aubry, then there is a tie (Sarah -3 , Tai -3, Aubry - 1).  If Tai plays his idol, then Sarah goes home.  

Cirie says that if she plays the steal-a-vote, anyone who has an idol can play it after the votes are cast (but before they are read).  If she steals Tai's vote, then it becomes Sarah - 2, Tai - 4, and Aubry -1, but Tai might realize that they are voting for him, and he would likely play his idol and Sarah goes home (or, if someone flips, Aubry goes home.)

Therefore, Cirie needs to get 4 votes for Tai without Tai playing his idol.  Cirie needs to convince Tai he is not going to go home.  To do this, she tells him that Sarah is planning to vote for him, but she is going to use the steal-a-vote advantage to steal Sarah's vote, and save Tai.  If she steals Sarah's vote, it becomes Tai-4, Sarah - 3.  Tai, however, thinks that, if Cirie steals Sarah's vote, Cirie will vote twice for Sarah and Sarah will be out.   

It is a convoluted plan, but it could work, except that Cirie can't actually steal any votes.  

This next part (in italics) is speculation on my part - Cirie convinces Sarah that she was going to vote for Tai but had to make him think she wasn't so she had to steal Sarah's vote otherwise it would be a tie. Troyzan or Brad decide that they want to vote for Michaela and let Sarah know this - (perhaps this was always their plan and Sarah wasn't actually in danger?). Sarah figures she needs to play the advantage because it is no use keeping it now, plus she may be on the chopping block.  Sarah thinks Brad and Troyzan are voting for Michaela, Tai might still be voting for her, Cirie and Michaela are voting for Tai, Aubry is voting for Tai or Sarah. So, without Sarah's vote (and if Aubry votes for Sarah), the vote would be to be Michaela - 2, Sarah - 2, and Tai - 2.  Sarah has to make sure that it is Michaela because Tai may have an idol and Sarah may end up being voted out.  

So she takes Tai's vote and votes for Michaela.  However, she can't tell Cirie this plan, because she might tell Michaela.  Obviously, she can't tell Michaela and she doesn't tell Aubry because - I am not sure, probably because she still doesn't trust Aubry. 

Why did Cirie vote for Aubry? - I don't know.  Maybe she saw it as her only hope to save Sarah and/or Michaela.  She might have known Troy and Brad were voting Michaela or she may have thought they were still voting for Sarah, and she figured that Michaela and Aubry were still voting for Tai, this means it would be Tai - 2, and Michaela-or-Sarah - 2.  Cirie probably figured Tai would play his idol and Sarah would use both of her votes for Aubry, so Cirie had to vote for Aubry to show Sarah she is loyal and to save Michaela if the guys were voting for her.  

If Cirie knew that Sarah and the guys were voting for Michaela, then she also knew she couldn't stop Michaela from going home, but she could get Michaela's jury vote because she didn't stab her in the back.  And there was no point in voting for Tai, since he should play his idol, and by not voting for him she keeps him thinking she was his friend and was trying to save him.

The biggest "what?" moment to me is that Tai didn't play his idol.  I can't figure out why, after being told by Cirie that they were gunning for him and Sarah taking his vote away, he kept it in his pocket.  He has 2, for goodness sakes! The only thing I could think of is that his biggest fear is wasting an idol by playing one he didn't need to play (apparently a bigger fear than going how with 2 in his pocket) and that Tai isn't very adept at figuring out who is on the chopping block - seems to me he has a bit of a history of having to be told who to vote for.  

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I didn't want to post in the Cirie thread for fear of provoking a fight, but I have never liked Cirie.

Yeah, Survivor devotes a lot of time to scheming and plotting and whispering, but to me that is the most boring part of the show.  I excuse myself to go raid the fridge.  A large part of it is strength and endurance - those challenges are the ones that hold my interest - and Cirie is a bust on physical challenges, like this ep.  Just my humble opinion.

Also, I'm tired of hearing tribe members whine about how hungry they are when they voted off Ozzie, their primary food provider, early.  Dummies.

Again, JMHO.

(Excusing self to go raid the fridge...flame away!)

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9 hours ago, Alapaki said:

But that still makes no sense.  If she conveyed the information to Brad that she claims to have intended to convey, then she would've risked Brad calling her out.

The only way she avoids that risk is if she fails to deliver the message she claims to have wanted to convey.

Sure, she should have figured out that Brad wasn't going to follow any instructions from her that he didn't fully understand. But we've been watching survivors miscommunicate and do illogical things for 34 seasons, so I don't see what's so unique about this that she absolutely must be lying.

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5 hours ago, spiderpig said:

I didn't want to post in the Cirie thread for fear of provoking a fight, but I have never liked Cirie.

Yeah, Survivor devotes a lot of time to scheming and plotting and whispering, but to me that is the most boring part of the show.  I excuse myself to go raid the fridge.  A large part of it is strength and endurance - those challenges are the ones that hold my interest - and Cirie is a bust on physical challenges, like this ep.  Just my humble opinion.

Also, I'm tired of hearing tribe members whine about how hungry they are when they voted off Ozzie, their primary food provider, early.  Dummies.

Again, JMHO.

(Excusing self to go raid the fridge...flame away!)

I totally agree with you! I've never liked Cirie either, and never thought she was all that great a player. Get me an ice cream while you're in there...  :)

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56 minutes ago, cooksdelight said:

I totally agree with you! I've never liked Cirie either, and never thought she was all that great a player. Get me an ice cream while you're in there...  :)

Chocolate chip or French vanilla?

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I like Cirie, but can understand why others would not.  For me, it is the combination of three things - her talking heads can be entertaining, she is very good (imo) of convincing others that something is in their best interest, when it isn't (like Erik giving up his idol or Tai not using his) - Sandra is also good at this, and she is probably the player that is most like the way I would be if I were on the show.  My balance sucks and I have never been a very fast runner or swimmer.  I would be good at puzzles, but my best hope to outlast would be to get along with everyone and convince people to do things for my benefit, while making them think it was for theirs.  

However, the reason why she is able to convince people to do things is that she gives them this trail of "logic" that weaves all over until people finally reach the conclusion she wants them to.  This ends up, like it did in this episode, being a plan that doesn't always seem to make sense to those of us at home who have gotten food and enough sleep.

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2 hours ago, needschocolate said:

I like Cirie, but can understand why others would not.  For me, it is the combination of three things - her talking heads can be entertaining, she is very good (imo) of convincing others that something is in their best interest, when it isn't (like Erik giving up his idol or Tai not using his) - Sandra is also good at this, and she is probably the player that is most like the way I would be if I were on the show.  My balance sucks and I have never been a very fast runner or swimmer.  I would be good at puzzles, but my best hope to outlast would be to get along with everyone and convince people to do things for my benefit, while making them think it was for theirs.  

However, the reason why she is able to convince people to do things is that she gives them this trail of "logic" that weaves all over until people finally reach the conclusion she wants them to.  This ends up, like it did in this episode, being a plan that doesn't always seem to make sense to those of us at home who have gotten food and enough sleep.

I completely appreciate your viewpoint, choc.  I'm such a klutz that whenever Mr. pig and I go anywhere he says "why don't you just fall down right now and get it over with?"  Still, despite my charming personality, a lot of people would get bored watching me week after week unless I fell off an extremely dangerous cliff into a crocodile pit.

Hey - Mark Burnett - maybe we can work something out.  Call my agent. :-)

Edited by spiderpig
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On 5/17/2017 at 11:00 PM, princelina said:

LOL -- Years ago Jonathan Penner did - and Probst just continued in his announcer voice, "PENNER"S getting FRUSTRATED with ME!!"

Really?  Which time, because I must see this!  Doesn't surprise me that it was Penner, though.  :)

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1 hour ago, wallflower75 said:

Really?  Which time, because I must see this!  Doesn't surprise me that it was Penner, though.  :)

It was Cook Islands. 

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I didn't want to post in the Cirie thread for fear of provoking a fight, but I have never liked Cirie.

Yeah, Survivor devotes a lot of time to scheming and plotting and whispering, but to me that is the most boring part of the show.  I excuse myself to go raid the fridge.  A large part of it is strength and endurance - those challenges are the ones that hold my interest - and Cirie is a bust on physical challenges, like this ep.  Just my humble opinion.

Also, I'm tired of hearing tribe members whine about how hungry they are when they voted off Ozzie, their primary food provider, early.  Dummies.

Again, JMHO.

(Excusing self to go raid the fridge...flame away!)

But a lot of people care about strategy more than they care about challenges. Those people like Cirie. Different people value different things.

I think the challenges are seriously underrated and not discussed on any of the many fan podcasts surrounding this show.

I still like Cirie though.

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33 minutes ago, rose711 said:

But a lot of people care about strategy more than they care about challenges. Those people like Cirie. Different people value different things.

I think the challenges are seriously underrated and not discussed on any of the many fan podcasts surrounding this show.

I still like Cirie though.

I liked how this ep put two immunity challenges into one hour.  Better for my waistline.,

Sometimes this show reminds me of my favorite criticism from another board about Lost or Walking Dead or some such:

"Too much action.  Not enough standing around talking."

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Michaela is often held up as a "challenge beast" but I'm curious, has she ever won a challenge? I can't remember her winning in either this season or MGX.

She never won individual (She never got that deep into the merge), but I remember her being a dominant player in tribal immunities.

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I actually got the impression that Jeff wasn't thrilled with the whispering and scrambling. When it first started, he looked off to the side and kind of rolled his eyes and looked irritated. Almost like a "fuck, they're doing it again" kind of look. Not sure if he was looking at the jury or Production, or anyone at all.

Add me as another who can respect Sarah's game play but isn't rooting for her. I don't find her likeable at all, but for no reason I can discern.

I'm white - just to say that upfront, so I don't really understand the experience of a visible minority, but I would think that a good player would overcome any racial/religious/class/gendered, etc. differences. I guess a visible minority would have more to overcome, but it's no different than a gay man having to hide parts of himself to win over and charm straight contestants. Or a female having to adjust parts of her everyday speech and mannerisms to appeal to male contestants. Old to young, highly educated to laypeople....it's part of the game, and everyone has to do it in some capacity. I like Michaela a lot, as a player and character, and for sure it would be disheartening and frustrating to feel like you were singled out because of race. BUT, a good player knows that you have to leave that baggage once you set foot on the island. You have to treat every interaction as an opportunity to gain allies or convince people to give you the $, so a smart player would bite their tongue, squash those personal feelings, and say whatever the hell needed to be said. Apologize even if you've done nothing wrong. Laugh at things that aren't funny. Try to change preconceptions people may have about you....
In all these ways, Michaela is a horrible player because her pride and big mouth will not allow her to play a strategic social game. In life, this makes her someone I'd want to root for and be friends with. But in Survivor, it just makes her a bad player.

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I commented on the first immunity challenge, "I would hate to have to do that [stacking] with my right hand."  Eventually they showed that they built Cirie's in reverse, so I guess she's a lefty too.   Who was it who was using about six or eight per level--Brad I think?--with black and white tiles?  I'd think returning players, even if they hadn't had a stacking challenge, would remember that not just the stacking but the limited number of tiles are part of the challenge.  

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I am curious as to what Sarah's next move is going to be.  She was at the forefront of the so-called women's alliance that were five strong to Brad's three.  Then she cut Andrea.  Then she cut Michaela.   Not sure where she and Cirie stand with each other.  Cirie was left in the dark, as she voted for Aubry. Aubry was left in the dark, as she voted for Tai.

Where is there for Sarah to go?  She is definitely safe next round with Sierra's advantage.  But if she makes it to the end, what is her argument?  "I constantly flipped on and betrayed all of you because it is what I had to do to get to the end?"  Evolution of the game yadda yadda yadda.   Will that work with this group of players and jurors?

I am not so sure.  As Andrea said, she would like to think that the jury will reward gameplay, but it is hard to keep emotion out of it, if one feels betrayed. The editing seems to be telegraphing her win, but it might be telegraphing a spectacular fall as well.  Her best sure fire win is if she brings Tai and Troy to the end.  I think she would have a good chance against any of the remaining contestants.  

Her toughest opponents would be Brad and Cirie.   Brad is a fighter, he kept his group together as best as he could and I don't think he betrayed any of the jurors and he keeps persevering despite the odds being against him (ie the Mike Holloway path to winning).  Cirie "got off the couch" as Jeff keeps reminding us, and everyone seems to like and respect her.

********But if she makes it to the end, what is her argument? "I constantly flipped on and betrayed all of you because it is what I had to do to get to the end?" Evolution of the game yadda yadda yadda. Will that work with this group of players and jurors? *******

That would be an interesting test of how sexist the game/players are. Because that was exactly what Tony Vlachos did, and he won. It will be interesting to see how they react. Although for me, I would have voted her out long ago for her dopey annoying personality.

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  On 5/18/2017 at 9:45 PM, Rachel RSL said:

Survivor isn't real life, it's a game. When you play Monopoly, you try to get everybody else's money. When you play Survivor, you have to stab people in the back.  I doubt any of these people lie and scheme in their everyday lives. Should police officers not be allowed to play to win? That's BS, in my humble opinion.

Tony was a police officer when he won. The show has had people from all walks of life, all kinds of careers. That's what makes it interesting, seeing people who normally would never lie or backstab do just that in order to win. :)

The problem I always had with Tony was that he was a cop who REALLY liked to lie, to the point where even if the truth would get an equal result, he would tell a lie just for the fun of it. I would never drive through the town he was a cop in, not in a million years.

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@needschocolate - I had to rescue a neighbor with a ride and even though I watched this ending when I got home and you laid it all out..................None of this makes any sense.

I don't care anymore.  Michaela was a physical beast on her first game and a complete sourpuss on this game.  As a viewer, "Bye Felicia"!

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3 hours ago, bikebrh said:

********But if she makes it to the end, what is her argument? "I constantly flipped on and betrayed all of you because it is what I had to do to get to the end?" Evolution of the game yadda yadda yadda. Will that work with this group of players and jurors? *******

That would be an interesting test of how sexist the game/players are. Because that was exactly what Tony Vlachos did, and he won. It will be interesting to see how they react. Although for me, I would have voted her out long ago for her dopey annoying personality.

Tony did betray a lot of people, most notably, his closest ally Trish.  She was particularly torn up about it.  I remember him getting ripped on at final TC.  But the reason why he won is because he was up against Woo.  Woo is in my mind one of the worst Survivors ever.  He is possibly one of the least intelligent and least strategic players ever to play the game.  Woo made a huge mistake when he brought Tony to the finals over Kass.  Most people saw Woo as Tony's loyal servant.   They were allied and together.   Given the choice between rewarding servant or master, of course I think people rather reward the one who called the shots.  At least they can say they lost to a good player.  Who in their right mind would want to say they lost to rocks-for-brains Woo?

I don't think Sarah is in the same position.  In the first place, I'm not even sure who she is allied with any more.  I thought it was Cirie, until the last TC.  She's not with Aubry (kept her in the dark about Michaela), I don't think she can say she's with Brad (it's a bit too late to form a new bond), nor Troy and Tai.  She's on her own.  She doesn't have a core group that she stuck with for most of the game, she pretty much flipped on everybody.  I also think a lot depends on what the final TC looks like.  Will it be two or three?  Since next week is a 2 hour finale, I doubt they cast off four people in the first hour.  So it's probably a final 3.  

So the situation between Tony and Sarah is not really analogous.  It's not sexism.  It's a different game.  If Sarah is with a combination of Tai, Troyzan and Aubry (people who I would consider have done very little in this game) and she still loses because people are pissed at her flipping, then maybe yes I could see your argument about being punished for flipping holding water.  But otherwise, I don't think so.  Her losing would have nothing to do with the fact that she's a woman.

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On 5/19/2017 at 6:16 PM, Calamity Jane said:

As a retired teacher of grades 4-8 through my career, I can say that in my state, the compass rose was part of the social studies/history curriculum every single year.  I don't have my old content frameworks anymore, but I am pretty confident that it was a standard every year from 3rd through high school.  So it would not be a function of one's wealth or leisure-time activities to have been not just exposed to but taught repeatedly about it, and that makes it odd to me for an adult never to have heard of it.  I'm also not really convinced that one had to have a prior image of it in mind to realize how the puzzle should go.  The other "arms" of the rose had the alternating pattern, so the bottom should have followed that.  It was one of those things that happen on Survivor - how many times have we seen someone believe they've solved a puzzle, but they missed a small detail?

I liked Michaela on her first season, and I've gotten a kick out of her this time around, too.  She certainly does generate strong feelings in people.   

Not all states use the term compass rose at every year though. They all likely have standards about reading a map, but if it was back in elementary school, Michaela could just not remember. Someone her age has probably viewed most of her maps online where it isn't really present.

But, I don't really know why that would impact her ability to solve the puzzle. She was piecing together a pattern and the mistake she made was mismatching colors. You don't need to have seen the symbol before to know not to mismatch colors.

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I like Michaela and I don't really know the rose compass but, from the comfort of my couch, I could see it was wrong. I can see why, in the heat of the moment, she thought it was right, or at least thought it was worth a shot calling Jeff over. 

I like good challenges, but I'll admit most of my favourite players are strategists not challenge monsters (although some are both). I do find it more interesting when players who aren't the biggest challenge beasts get far/win - players who just win their way to the end tend to bore me a little bit. But then, I don't watch any sports, so that's not why I like Survivor. 

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14 hours ago, bikebrh said:

********But if she makes it to the end, what is her argument? "I constantly flipped on and betrayed all of you because it is what I had to do to get to the end?" Evolution of the game yadda yadda yadda. Will that work with this group of players and jurors? *******

I think, if Sarah makes it to the end, we will hear her say "big moves" a lot - perhaps enough that it could be dangerous to make it a drinking game.  She said it during the first TC this past episode - She thinks it is more about playing hard, making big moves, etc, than personal relationships.  I get the feeling that, when she is deciding who to vote for, she asks herself, "Which one would be the bigger move?"

Speaking of that TC, Andrea said that there was no talking/scrambling going on at camp before coming to TC.  I would have thought she was a savvy enough player that she would realize that if you think no one is scrambling, then you are the one they are targeting.  How many times have we heard talking heads of "No one is talking to me or making eye contact, I think I am on the chopping block"?

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15 hours ago, Sugar said:

I would think that a good player would overcome any racial/religious/class/gendered, etc. differences. 

But if someone is racist/sexist/classist then you can do everything right and they still aren't going to accept you. I don't think that's anywhere near the case with this cast and Michaela, but I think acting like you can just get racists to like you by being a good player is completely untrue. Again though, I really don't think anyone this season was some kind of full-blown, Steve Bannon style racist.

I think the only way Sarah will really have a difficult time winning is if she's against Cirie or Aubry or maybe Brad. She'll easily beat Troyzan and Tai imo. 

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8 hours ago, peachmangosteen said:

But if someone is racist/sexist/classist then you can do everything right and they still aren't going to accept you. I don't think that's anywhere near the case with this cast and Michaela, but I think acting like you can just get racists to like you by being a good player is completely untrue. Again though, I really don't think anyone this season was some kind of full-blown, Steve Bannon style racist.

I think the only way Sarah will really have a difficult time winning is if she's against Cirie or Aubry or maybe Brad. She'll easily beat Troyzan and Tai imo. 

I think Sarah still wins against Cirie and Aubry based on the edit. Normally, I'd think she'd lose against both but not this season. Unless, the editors are totally fooling us with a Cirie win. There was such backlash with the Michele win and I'm wondering if they are doing it again. Would they? I hope not. I still Sarah wins even up against Cirie. We didn't see enough of her game (mostly because she didn't have to go to Tribal Council) and, that Sarah has been front and center. Too obvious? I'm so confused. LOL!!!

Edited by ByaNose
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Sarah is explicitly taking a "I'm making 'Game Changer' moves" strategy.

A juror like Zeke, who will always read of TPTB's script, is going to want to "reward the real game-changer is this season of game-changers" /barf.

The question is how many jurors are ready to toe the line.

But I don't think that backstabbing and flipping carries as much baggage this season as it might in other seasons.

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5 hours ago, peachmangosteen said:

But if someone is racist/sexist/classist then you can do everything right and they still aren't going to accept you. I don't think that's anywhere near the case with this cast and Michaela, but I think acting like you can just get racists to like you by being a good player is completely untrue. Again though, I really don't think anyone this season was some kind of full-blown, Steve Bannon style racist.

I think the only way Sarah will really have a difficult time winning is if she's against Cirie or Aubry or maybe Brad. She'll easily beat Troyzan and Tai imo. 

I wasn't referring to actual prejudice, but being able to relate to people form different backgrounds and making yourself relatable to them. If you're on a team with 7 Coltons, then no, you're probably not going to get anywhere. But it sounds like Michaela is talking not about overt discrimination, but just differences in backgrounds, lifestyles, economic circumstances, etc. A good player can still find ways to bond with people from any walk of life. If rich white Brad is talking about his yacht, don't just dismiss it as something you can't participate in, get in there and join the convo. Shit, pretend you subscribe to Yacht Lover's Digest if you have to. Plenty of minority players, or players from the lower class were still able to charm, persuade, and wiggle their way to F3 or the eventual win. I don't think Michaela is unique in that way - she just didn't know how to work with what she was given and try to make the most of it.

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36 minutes ago, Sugar said:

I wasn't referring to actual prejudice, but being able to relate to people form different backgrounds and making yourself relatable to them. If you're on a team with 7 Coltons, then no, you're probably not going to get anywhere. But it sounds like Michaela is talking not about overt discrimination, but just differences in backgrounds, lifestyles, economic circumstances, etc. A good player can still find ways to bond with people from any walk of life. If rich white Brad is talking about his yacht, don't just dismiss it as something you can't participate in, get in there and join the convo. Shit, pretend you subscribe to Yacht Lover's Digest if you have to. Plenty of minority players, or players from the lower class were still able to charm, persuade, and wiggle their way to F3 or the eventual win. I don't think Michaela is unique in that way - she just didn't know how to work with what she was given and try to make the most of it.

I agree with this.

As much as Probst works overtime to sell the company line that Survivor is some grand social experiment in which everyone can't help but reveal their real, true personalities, . . . it's a month.  Most of the successful players have been savvy and capable enough to calibrate what they show of their own personalities based on the group they're stuck playing with.

"Being understood" by your competitors is irrelevant to the "social game" aspect of Survivor.  What is important, as @Sugar says, is making your opponents feel understood.  In fact, that's precisely what Cirie was trying to convey to Michaela in that conversation we saw from earlier this season.

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On 5/19/2017 at 7:19 PM, JoBeth70 said:

Michaela is often held up as a "challenge beast" but I'm curious, has she ever won a challenge? I can't remember her winning in either this season or MGX.

Michaela never won an individual immunity challenge, because she never made it to the merge in mvgx, but I believe she was a key part of winning four challenges for the millennials and Ikabula. The most infamous one was for the millennials when she dragged the Gen X-ers through the water in the ... water wrestling reward challenge, and her top came off. Another one was where she did the two-person...tilt-table ball maze with Hannah on Ikabula and then directed Michelle and Zeke to a win. I think often times she'd have a strong start to a challenge that ended up with "guys throw stuff at other stuff to knock it down." But that was part of what made her threatening to start with, and then her seashell strategy revealed she had a brain to go with it.

It's ironic, because she was so good-natured about being voted out this year, by people who seemed like they couldn't stand her and she was just alliance collateral damage in a scumbag move against Cirie. Whereas last year, she was incensed when she was voted out because she was seen a threat by people who really did like her. I feel like those reactions should've been reversed, somehow. But maybe this year felt less personal, or she had perspective or something.

Edited by Eolivet
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4 hours ago, ByaNose said:

I think Sarah still wins against Cirie and Aubry based on the edit. Normally, I'd think she'd lose against both but not season. Unless, the editors are totally fooling us with a Cirie win. There was such backlash with the Michele win and I'm wondering if they are doing it again. Would they? I hope not. I still Sarah wins even up against Cirie. We didn't see enough of her game (mostly because she didn't have to go to Tribal Council) and, that Sarah has been front and center. Too obvious? I'm so confused. LOL!!!

I think it'd be interesting to see Cirie vs. Sarah and I'm not entirely sure who'd win, but I don't see a way in which Cirie makes F3 anyway so it won't matter.

22 minutes ago, Eolivet said:

It's ironic, because she was so good-natured about being voted out this year, by people who seemed like they couldn't stand her and she was just alliance collateral damage in a scumbag move against Cirie. Whereas last year, she was incensed when she was voted out because she was seen a threat by people who really did like her. I feel like those reactions should've been reversed, somehow. But maybe this year felt less personal, or she had perspective or something.

I can kinda get that tbh. I feel like I'd probably be more upset when people I thought had my back voted me out than I would be when people that never liked me and that I never liked did.

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2 hours ago, Alapaki said:

"Being understood" by your competitors is irrelevant to the "social game" aspect of Survivor.  What is important, as @Sugar says, is making your opponents feel understood.  In fact, that's precisely what Cirie was trying to convey to Michaela in that conversation we saw from earlier this season.

Well, no. Cirie was expressly asking Michaela to mask her aggressive emotions and discontent around the others. She said she used to be a hothead, too, so she understood Michaela's emotions, but that she needed to not show them on her face and enact them around camp. "When you're mad, unmad, when you're hungry, unhungry" or words to that effect. It was about toning her emotions down and adjusting her manner - something I think she already did to a large degree (or the edit just left out all her contemptuous expressions for her tribemates this season). She certainly didn't whack any  plants on her way out this time. I think she went in this season quite cowed by the company, but her natural moodiness seeped out, even thought to my mind in the bits I saw of her this season she was very subdued facially...

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On 5/19/2017 at 5:06 PM, cooksdelight said:

I disagree because sometimes they do. Sad stories win a lot more than someone who's already a millionaire saying why they deserve more money. Last season's winner broke down in tears about his mother dying of cancer and he got every single vote. I cannot remember which seasons they played in, but there have been several people who overcame hardship, had a sick relative, had a hard life....they all won easily. Brad's wife was always seen as a goat since no one in their right mind would give her more money.

There are definitely seasons when sad stories came into play in the FTC but I don't think that will be the case in this season.  These are all returning players, they all like Survivor and my sense is they'll vote for someone who they feel deserves to win for their game play.

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On 5/20/2017 at 10:37 PM, MissEwa said:

I like good challenges, but I'll admit most of my favourite players are strategists not challenge monsters (although some are both). I do find it more interesting when players who aren't the biggest challenge beasts get far/win - players who just win their way to the end tend to bore me a little bit. But then, I don't watch any sports, so that's not why I like Survivor. 

I'm with you. The only time I really find myself rooting for a "challenge beast" is when it's someone who's really on the outside and basically HAS to win every challenge or they'd be gone. But, for the most, part, I appreciate the strategy stuff a lot more. It's always hard to play armchair juror, but I think I would be the type to let bygones be bygones. Unless a betrayal was particularly nasty, I'd be apt to vote for the person who played a hard, strategic game. At this point, I WOULD vote for Sarah, because I think she's constantly scheming and has made the best moves at the right time. I'd like to say I wouldn't care if she flipped because it was what was best for HER at the time. But I know that's easier said than done.  Juries tend to be bitter. 

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21 hours ago, southpaw said:

Before starting to watch this season, if I had been told that Aubry, Cirie, and Sarah would be the final three, I would not expect Sarah to get even one vote at FTC.  I would be basing my assumption on her gameplay in her previous season, just as I would for Aubry and Cirie.

I feel that many viewers this season want to reward Aubry for Kaôh Rōng and/or Cirie for Micronesia.  The problem for Aubry is that early on she had often been left out of the voting loop and currently she has had little input on who should be voted out next.  She is frustrated almost to the point of tears in some of her THs.

Cirie is having quite a bit of influence, as usual.  Her big blunder was at this last TC but had it worked, she would have had quite a story at the end, along with pointing out where she had manipulated others in the game.  Her only problem is the same one she had in Micronesia.  She absolutely must win the final 4 immunity challenge because no-one is going to take her to the end.

Now, if Aubry, Cirie, and Sarah are in the final three, I believe that the jury could vote for Cirie out of respect for her current gameplay but would value Sarah’s game over Aubry’s in this season.  IMO Sarah’s gameplay has clearly improved over her last time out while Aubry’s has not.

In a fascinating twist, Cirie's "blunder" in the last episode may actually save her. She'll look a lot less threatening now. So if she doesn't win immunity at final four, they might target someone else who seems a bigger threat (like Sarah or Brad). Tai and Troy are clearly goats, and Aubrey looks like one, too. But I think Sarah will target Aubrey, who she doesn't trust, rather than Cirie, but who knows what Sarah's next "big move" will be? So depending upon who is in the final four and who uses idols, she could make to the final.

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On 5/18/2017 at 11:48 AM, Ms Blue Jay said:

Can Brad even fish?  I don't mean to sound snarky.  Had he actually done it before?

I may be mistaken, but I believe Brad was the only fisher left in camp after Ozzy's eviction. 

In fact, I seem to recall Brad getting a little peeved at Ozzy frequently portraying himself as the camp's sole or primary fisherman.

 

On 5/18/2017 at 3:52 PM, blackwing said:

TPTB will never ban the whispering.  Jeffy in particular seems to absolutely love it.  He sits there with this huge smile of amazement and wonder, like he's a teen watching porn for the first time.  You can almost see the thought bubble over his head proclaiming, "Wow!  THIS is what great TV is.  I smell Emmy!!!!!"

From Production's / Peachy's perspective, why would they ban the whisperfests?  The whispers directly contradict the common (and often true) perception of votes being predetermined long before anyone picks up their torch and starts marching to Tribal, and reinforces the Production-backed position that the vote - and, consequently, the entire game - can flip on a dime at Tribal Council.

 

On 5/18/2017 at 4:25 PM, MissBluxom said:

Yes. Sarah certainly does seem to be very smart.  But, how smart was it for her to give or loan her advantage to Cirie? Did she know for certain that Cirie would give it back to her if and when she asked for it back? My guess is that Cirie could have just refused to return it.

...at which point Cirie would be considered to have attempted "stealing" the Advantage, which is not permitted.

 

Regarding Sarah's Steal-A-Vote Advantage play - the majority of the discussion appears to be about Cirie's motivations in attempting to use the advantage.  *I* think the more significant questions apply to Sarah's motivations in giving Cirie the advantage to hold, and Sarah's reaction to Cirie's attempted use.

Motivation: Purely my own conjecture here, but I believe Sarah's suspicions were raised by Cirie's proposal of Tai as a potential target.  Mistakenly or not, Sarah saw Tai as an ally - and (not inaccurately) could interpret Cirie's imposition of a target on Tai's back as an attempt to increase Sarah's isolation in the game, and by extension Sarah's dependence upon Cirie as a sole remaining ally.  Sarah knew the non-transfer clause of the Steal-A-Vote rendered it useless to anybody but herself - so as long as Cirie didn't, it made an excellent strawman with which to gauge Cirie's intentions.  So Sarah told Cirie about most of the details relating to the advantage earlier in the day, giving Cirie plenty of time to formulate her own strategy based on her (incomplete) understanding of its conditions - but didn't give the advantage to Cirie until right as they were beginning their march to TC, thereby preventing Cirie from gaining complete understanding.

Reaction: What is Sarah most likely going to think of Cirie's attempt to steal Sarah's vote with the advantage?  From Sarah's point of view, I see only two realistic interpretations:

  1. Cirie intends to target Tai - Sarah's perceived ally - over Sarah's objections, to increase Sarah's game isolation and dependence upon Cirie.  Cirie therefore plans to eliminate Sarah's non-Tai vote and substitute a second Tai vote in its stead.
  2. Cirie intends to target Sarah directly for elimination.  Stealing Sarah's vote then simultaneously (1) removes a non-Sarah vote in the tally, (2) substitutes a second Sarah vote in its stead, and (3) targets Sarah overtly to all other voters.  In truth, I think Sarah might see #2 as the more likely option.

Once exposed, the advantage will need to be used ASAP to remove the resultant target its exposure creates - so what's the best way to use it?  Flip interpretation option #2, and target Cirie directly?  Not necessarily a good idea; it's an obvious play, and there's still enough numbers in play for Cirie to flip the script and evict Tai or someone else Sarah might consider a potential ally - after which Cirie would be gunning directly for Sarah. 

Better to go less obvious: flip option #1, and target Cirie's strongest ally besides Sarah - Michaela.  After which Cirie's support based will be weakened, and Cirie will have little or no choice but to depend upon Sarah for continued viability in the game.

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I'm way late loo this party so I don't know if anyone still cares, but hey, I've never minded listening to myself speak. 

On 5/17/2017 at 7:27 PM, Angeltoes said:

Why on earth would anyone have a crush on Cochran?  

Why not?

On 5/18/2017 at 1:27 AM, MerBearHou said:

Thank you, LadyChatts.  I'm confused about a couple of things:  did both Sarah and Cirie not know what the fine print said?  Otherwise, why did Sarah give Cirie the advantage in the first place if it wasn't transferable?  I hear that it was a good will gesture but what was the gesture really?  

A lot has been said about Sarah's motivation. My spec is that it was insurance against Cirie herself being targeted. Cirie has got to be worried about a blindside. When an ally gives you a thing that goes with you if you get bounced, that's pretty good insurance against that ally turning on you.

On 5/18/2017 at 4:17 PM, cooksdelight said:

That's exactly what happened last night. Jeff told Cirie she had to give it back to Sarah, she could not use it. I really think Cirie didn't understand what "non-transferrable" means.

Oh c'mon. Cirie isn't a moron or a 4-year old. As has been pointed out, she didn't get the advantage until right before TC, so she didn't habe time to thoroughly read it. Even without that info, though, it takes a lot of dismissal of Cirie's intelligence to suppose this. 

On 5/19/2017 at 9:27 AM, enoughcats said:

From Michaela's Parade interview.

This is the part about her preferring Sandra and Cirie to the other castaways. As a woman of color, I find it absolutely unsurprising that a WOC finds herself more comfortable with other WOC, especially as mentors. 

On 5/19/2017 at 10:39 AM, blackwing said:

I highly doubt they are all racist.

Of course they are. We all are, as a consequence of growing up in a racist society. To be an ally, you don't say, "I'm not racist," you say, "I'm aware that I have prejudices and I will always fight them and be open to critique. Most of all, I won't automatically dismiss a person of color's description of their own experience."

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24 minutes ago, 303420 said:

Even without that info, though, it takes a lot of dismissal of Cirie's intelligence to suppose this

My opinion of Cirie is that she's not particularly smart. And we don't know what she knew and when she knew it, based on seeing so little of any conversations during this episode.

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Re: The Cochran crush... I viewed that as a Survivor crush. Like Aubry viewed Cochran as a former winner with a sense of humor and she was being compared to him, so the "crush" wasn't technically a romantic interest but an expression of respect and "Hey, that's cool." 

Like when I say I have a girl crush on someone. I'm not really interested in dating said woman, but it's a way of expressing admiration for them.

I don't know that Aubry would have volunteered Cochran as a possible "crush" without this particular situation, either. What was she supposed to say? "Ewww? Cochran has cooties!" about one of Probst's friends? She seems a bit socially savvier than that.

So I think this may be a mountain out of a molehill, though I'd almost bet Probst will bring it up in some god awful awkward fashion at the Reunion.

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On 5/18/2017 at 9:10 PM, Mumbles said:

When will this show lose its hard-on for Cochrane? They speak of him in such reverential tones. This is the guy who's using his Harvard Law degree to write for "Kevin Can Wait" for cry eye.

The fact that I discovered this show during quarantine, and now really love it, is REALLY making me laugh right now.

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