The Game is on, cunning, conniving or cajoling lets find a winner!

The WAR for the final five!

Russell, Brett, Natalie, Jaison and Mick. It looks like 3 tribal councils will come into play Sunday Night. Russell now needs to get aggressive and win a Individual Immunity contest. The remaing need a little more help. The people who don’t win any II’s must now decide who to team up with to get to the end.

Jeff Probst blogs ‘Survivor: Samoa’: episode #14

 

Hey everybody, let’s get right into it…

ANATOMY OF A REWARD CHALLENGE

Long before the Survivors participate in a challenge it has already gone through an extensive testing process. It begins with a “test block” where our dreamteamers do a light run-through of the challenge so we can see how it’s coming along.

When we did the first test block for last night’s “Coconut Drop” reward challenge it was rough. We all agreed that it was a brilliant and inventive challenge but it wasn’t quite right. So we gave some notes and our art department made some changes and we tested it again. Technically it was working much better but it was still taking a long time to complete.  

We debated reducing the number of coconuts so that it would play faster. But John Kirhoffer and Dan Munday, the geniuses who created the challenge, reminded us that if we reduced the coconuts the challenge would lose a lot of impact. The only way to change the challenge would be to completely redesign it. Well, this was a challenge that had already taken a couple of weeks to design and construct, so the idea of starting over was out of the question. We went ahead with the challenge as planned and it played beautifully. There was great drama and some character revealing moments surrounding Natalie and religion and Shambo and her hair. So, on that front it was a hit. But it took nearly four hours to complete. Four hours… and that’s simply too long.

To give context, not counting endurance challenges which are in their own category, the average challenge takes 15 minutes to run. The reason four hours is too long is that it affects everything else on the schedule. Because we’re behind, the reward itself is now delayed and could result in us having less time on the reward than we desire. The losing team of Survivors who are returning to camp have less daylight for us to shoot reality and conduct interviews. It’s a domino effect. If we have a tribal council that night, we might have to go later than normal and that means our crews are working longer days than we anticipated and then you have to get up the next day to do it all again and you’re already behind. You get the point.

The good news is that this rarely happens. I’m talking maybe once every other season. That’s how good our challenge guys are at designing these contests. They really know their stuff.

WHY WE DO TEAM REWARDS DURING THE INDIVIDUAL PORTION OF THE GAME

There is a specific reason that we will often run a “team” challenge during the individual portion of the game and that is because we want to continue to mix things up and cause conflict. When you send only three people on a reward and the other three are left behind you have a very good chance of a new alliance forming or somebody sharing information that will turn the game around.

The reason it works is because people are often either desperate and/or suspicious, as they should be, and they use this opportunity to do a little detective work or to stir things up. Survivor is so much easier to play from the confines of your living room, much more difficult to actually be “in” the game where every decision is a potential million dollar choice or mistake.

You saw it happen at the reward challenge where Russell, Jaison, and Shambo started investigating Natalie’s decision to choose Brett as her teammate. That simple little discussion could change the game 180 degrees. That’s all it takes for a month-long alliance to come crumbling down. Or if you’re Russell it’s merely another opportunity to capitalize on everybody else’s paranoia and move one step closer to the end.

BRETT IS AN ISLAND

There was no hiding that the Foa Foa four wanted to get rid of Brett. They talked about it at every challenge and at tribal council. It was quite refreshing to not have them pretend that “maybe Brett has a shot to stay.” Anything can happen but if Brett loses an immunity challenge he will be in serious trouble. If Brett makes it to the final, short of a total meltdown, I think he wins the million dollars.

IMMUNITY CHALLENGE

This challenge was the prototype for a Survivor challenge. It looks simple, you can play it at home, but after a 36 days of playing Survivor, merely counting pigs can drive you insane.

There were lots of different strategies going on. I stayed back in the counting area so I could monitor everything. Russell would memorize a couple of numbers and head out. Brett had a different strategy. He stayed for a long time, storing many numbers in his head, never panicking. I love watching challenges play out in front of me, knowing the decisions the Survivors are making are often do or die. Clearly for Brett, it paid off.

THE MULLET IS GONE

Well, there is no hiding my sadness that Shambo is gone. She was loved by some and despised by others, but from my little perch she was a great Survivor contestant. She had a point of view and she shared it openly. She had a sense of humor about herself, she was a pretty good player and without question Shambo was memorable.

I can tell you right now that some of the other Survivors from this season who are reading this as you are will be screaming at me for being nice to Shambo. Not my problem. I wasn’t in the game, I only know what I see and what I saw I enjoyed. I’m not saying Shambo wouldn’t get on my nerves over time, I’m only saying I liked what I saw.

SO WHERE DO WE STAND

When we finished shooting Survivor: Samoa I had mixed feeling about how the season would play for the audience. I knew we had a star in Russell but I wasn’t sure if we had anything else.

I have had hundreds of people stop me to tell me this is one of their favorite seasons. I realize that may not ring true to everybody reading this, but for a lot of people this has been a great season. Russell is truly a star and like him or not the fact that he is still in the game as we go into the final episode is a very good thing. The Foa Foa comeback has also been a major storyline this season.

Equally interesting is that Brett is still alive. Suddenly the quiet T-shirt designer is only a few days and one or two challenges away from a legitimate shot at a million dollars.

Even though I do know the outcome of who makes it to the final, I am still going to give you the same predictions I felt at this point when we were shooting the show:

Brett – If he makes it to the final, I think Brett has a really good shot at getting enough votes to win the money. Some of the jury may not feel he deserves it, but with a jury made up of Galu, the odds are in his favor.

Russell – Hands down the strongest player of this season. NO doubt about it. The big question is “Can he get the vote?” That really will depend on whether the jury takes an intellectual approach (if so he has a chance) or an emotional approach (his chances diminish significantly.) If he makes it to the final he will have his work cut out for him.

Natalie – With only five people left, I’d say Natalie has fairly good odds of winning this game. Her biggest challenge is going to be getting to the final. If Brett continues to win, Natalie could be in trouble because she is a threat to win the game. Her best strategy would be to continue to stand next to Russell and vote the way he says.

Jaison – He has a reasonable shot depending on who he is up against. If Jaison is up against Mick and Natalie I think he could make a pretty compelling argument and might sway the jury his way. He was a slow burn but I think people have come to appreciate his integrity.

Mick – I think Mick is the longshot. The one thing that could turn it for Mick is if he makes it to the final and then reveals that he has been playing “quiet” for a reason. If Mick turns out to be a great orator he could surprise everybody and change the minds of the jury at the final tribal council.

I hope you’re excited for our finale on Sunday. I think it’s going to be fun to watch and the Reunion show should be a kick as well.

AND THIS JUST IN…

On a separate note, I just found out that the pilot for a new show I created with Mark Burnett, called “LIVE FOR THE MOMENT” will air at 8 pm on Thursday, Jan. 28th, 2010. If you’re looking for something new that offers great adventure as well as an uplifting message about how to get the most out of life, I hope you’ll check it out and encourage your friends to watch. I’m really proud of it and I hope it connects with an audience. The only way a show like this gets a chance for a second episode is if people watch the first one! Thanks for the support.

FINAL BLOG

I may not be able to write a blog following the finale. I will do my best but I want to be up front and share that it just might not happen.

So with that in mind I will take a small leap ahead and say… “Survivor 20…..” Wait till you see what we have in store for you! I think you’re gonna dig it!

Thanks to Entertainment Weekly for letting me do these blogs again and thanks to Dalton Ross for the weekly reminders to get my blogs finished on time.

Finally, thanks to you guys, the fans, our loyal audience, the people who read this blog and respond with your comments. I read your comments every week and I learn a lot from them. Sometimes your comments even get copied and sent to our producers or our challenge department because you make some very good points in your analysis of the show.

I’ve enjoyed our back and forth, thanks for the honesty.

And now…. Let’s get to Sunday night already!

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‘Survivor: Samoa’ recap: Heaven Help Her

Natalie seeks divine intervention at the reward challenge, while Russell gets even cockier at Tribal Council

By Dalton Ross | Dec 18, 2009
Dalton Ross
Dalton Ross
Dalton Ross is an Assistant Managing Editor at EW and would feel a whole lot better if you would stop looking at his picture.

 

The will to win versus the will to survive!

The weather looks like it might again play a factor in Samoa. The sense of life survival could just out weigh the need to hang in there for $1M bucks. Also, taking a look at your odds with the way game play goes might be a factor to stay in the game. Not sure how many of you have had the experience of extended cold. There is no feeling in the world quite like it. It doesn’t even have to be that cold, but when you add the wetness that drives clear to your bones it is unbearable. I remember the feeling when I was a kid and we stayed out all day playing and how ready I was at the end of the day to get inside and stand above a floor register to have the heat blow up and warm you from head to toe. Also, while I was stationed in Newfoundland when I was in the Navy. The extreme cold of a harsh Northern Atlantic winter is a truly scary feeling. When I saw the cold weather freeze the ocean water so thick that it backed up  the water under a small bridge along the shoreline in a cove just off the coast of the ocean that it raised the bridge off the ground and crack it, I could only imagine what it would do to me if I was exposed to that amount of cold for very long.

Five people left now. Russell still seems to have the advantage even though he no longer has any HII power left. His FF teammates seem prepared to go to the F4 together. Brett must go at all costs. At this point, immunity is the only thing that can keep him in the game. Just the odds at a immunity challenge are against him. Any of the FF4 win immunity and Brett is gone.

Shambo’s final words

Shambo – The day after

Shambo at the Reward Challenge Feast

Shanbo at Ponderosa – Pt.1

Shambo at Ponderosa – Pt.2

It all ends Sunday. My take is Russell, Natalie and Mick will be the F3. Brett out next and Jaison after that(unless he wimps out from the cold). So, how soon will Sunday get here?

Who’d a thunk it?

 

 

 

 

 

 Now that it’s all conjecture as to who will win the game,lets see what other people think about,

 The Gnome King and the

The Silent Majority

silent majority that are riding his coat tails.

 
From: Sharesz
Posted on Jokers Update, visit for more comments!
I think that the “Final 3″ will definitely be Russell, Natalie and Mick…  

Frankly, my personal opinion is that Mick will get NO VOTES because he has NOT done anything to deserve it!

And Natalie will get the bitchy women votes from Kelly, Laura and Monica because they like her and just to spite Russell.

Women like Kelly, Laura and Monica can be vindictive, bitter and resentful that they were “outsmarted” and “outplayed” by the most intelligent, strategic player (my personal opinion) in Survivor history.

Again, I think they’ll vote for Natalie just to spite Russell and because they happen to like her.

Also, don’t forget Monica’s bitchy comment to Russell, “I can make or break you on the jury and I’m going to vote on “need” because I know you made $2 million last year and you don’t need it” (paraphrasing here)…

That statement shows what an idiot Monica is!

I think the men respect “game play”.

My feeling is that Shambo and Jaison will be sitting on the jury. They both know the truth and what really “went down” as far as Russell “calling the shots” and making all of the major decisions.

So, I think they will both vote for Russell.

I think that all the other men will also vote for Russell. As even Dave stated when he was “voted out”, Russell was “born to play this game”.

Every time, there was a “blindside” (Kelly, Laura, etc.), Dave was flabbergasted and awestruck by Russell’s brilliant and strategic “game play”.

Also, the fact that Russell made 1.7 million last year shouldn’t be a determining factor because after all, Mick can move to Beverly Hills and become an anesthesiologist with a plastic surgeon and make a lot of $$$.

I could be wrong as to who will vote for whom. The bottom line is that I think Russell not only DESERVES to win, I think he WILL win!

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From: AvidRealityWatcher
Posted on RealityTvWorld
“So it would be your opinion then…”
That the 2 safest people for anyone to take to the final TC would be natalie and shambo. Well shambo is a given. Brett would win against anyone, so that takes 2 out of the equation.
keep: Shambo
vote out: Brett. he has that boyish charm that cant be ignored. he doesnt offend anyone, and has been neutral most of the game. By not alienating himself, all he has to do is make it to the final 3, and he is a millionaire.
vote out: Jaison too, not because he has what it takes to win this, but if he kept the right 2 he would have a shot. He doesnt have the killer instinct to win this, but his resolve to be able to stay in the game without a vote for him to leave since the merge says alot to a jury.
vote out: Mick for sure. If he went to the final, he could win even against Russel. The reasons would be he was voted a leader and people dont forget that. Most leaders are voted out because of incompetance. He has shown no incompetance. He has shown loyalty and works hard to make life at camp better.
vote out: Russel if they were smart, because he would have the same defence as Riohard Hatch. He was the puppet master, and when they all realize it, that gives him respectability. Sure he lied and manipulated, but wasnt that Richards game too.
undecided about natalie: With the right 2 at her side she could defend herself, but would it be enough? Did she play a good enough social game and use the right people to get to the end, or will the jury see through all that, and award the one that best deserves it?
rightfully so, I do believe that it would be a wrong move on anyones part to vote out Shambo, not because she deserves the money, but because Nobody would vote for her.
Your opinion is a very good one. I think if Russel is to win the money, he would have to keep Natalie, and Shambo. But by doing so, he also takes a risk that Natalie will win. Against anyone else, Russel has lower odds of winning especially against Brett.

ARW

Well, theres 2 opinions on how it may go. The only factoring anyone control at this point is to win Indivdual Immunity so that they are safe at Tribal Council! Good luck to all!

Does anybody really know what time it is?

As they count down down the days, the strategy is different for each cast-a-way. Russell seems intent on just bullying his way to the end. Everyone else has to be working a dual edged sword. They must figure out who to trust, who they want to be sitting beside them at the F2, and of course, how to get rid of Russell.

The impossible task has many steps. First, make sure he trusts you. Second, behind his back make an alliance without Russell finding out about the coup attempt. Third, how to make him play the HII or make him trusting enough not to play it. Fourth, make sure no one else back stabs you.

It seems so simple, however after 33 days, just who do you trust. Can you win an Individual Immunity to make sure you are safe. And who will vote for you on the Jury.

One person will be named the “Ultimate Survivor” and get an early Christmas present. Someone else will be named the Fans Favorite and will win $25,000 unless they change it this year.

We are ready to cheer our favorites, boo the ones we dislike and be surprised on the game play and outcome. It’s been a long 39 days for us viewers! We are interested in the final vote. Will Russell win in a landslide, will someone surprise us and sneak into the finals and take home the prize. Do you think Russell will continue his dominance. Who does he think can beat at the F2, or does he have the confidence he can win against anyone.

Good luck Survivors and may the best contestant win!

Whose on the Control Panel?

After taking Jedi Knight lessons from Yoda, Russell seems to have mastered mind control really well. Just look into their eyes and tell them what to do. No matter what all the talk around camp centers on it always ends up being what Russell wants to happen.

Shambo and Brett are the obvious two in trouble this Thursday. If one wins Immunity then look for the other one to be voted out. The FF4 with a common sense vote should keep taking out the former Galu tribemates.

Russell can only use his HII until the F4.  If this was a Nascar race, Russell would have running on Super Fuel. Despite his pit crew being eliminated from the pits, he has managed to stay in the race until he had a opening that would let him cut to the lead. Now in the lead he only has to keep his pit crew working their magic. The Checkered Flag is in site. The main competion will be gone soon and it then turns into a sprint for the finish.

Can Mick, Jaison or Natalie stage a coup and send King Richard to the pits so that an Earnhardt or Johnson can take the lead?

All eyes will be on Russell this Thursday to see him try to control everyone and get himself to the F2.

Odds are posted and Jeff calls it as he sees it!

MONICA

Why She’ll Win: Because she never gives up. Monica at least attempted to bring Shambo back into the fold and trick the Foa folk into voting for John.

Why She Won’t: Because none of those moves worked. Sorry, luckless hot bikini chick!

Probst’s Take: Monica wins only if she ends up in the final with Foa Foa members. I think Dave and/or Brett would defeat her in the final vote.   Overall  Odds: 30 – 1     

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DAVE

Why He’ll Win: He has performed well in challenges and is well liked by anyone not named Shambo.

Why He Won’t: What’s his signature move? (And no, silently mouthing the word ”wow” to himself at Tribal Council does not count.)

Probst’s Take: If he can find a way to make it to the end, he’s just wacky enough that he might pull off a completely unexpected win.

OVERALL ODDS: 25-1

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 SHAMBO

Why She’ll Win: She went from Galu zero to Foa Foa hero when she switched sides. The impact of that move is undeniable.

Why She Won’t: The ”yoga-loving 90210” jury may respect the move, but not the player. Even Shambo’s new allies don’t seem to think highly of her.

Probst’s Take: Her betrayal of Galu combined with being on the bottom of Foa Foa makes it tough for her to win.

OVERALL ODDS: 20-1    

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BRETT

Why He’ll Win: He’s made no enemies along the way, which I suppose is what happens when you never speak.

Why He Won’t: Never has a player made it so far and been shown so little. A winner would never get the invisible edit Brett has. I’m not even sure the other contestants know who the hell he is.

Probst’s Take: Everybody likes Brett. If Brett makes it to the end, he wins. Period.

OVERALL ODDS: 15-1     

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JAISON

Why He’ll Win: One would hope the law student would know his way around a jury.

Why He Won’t: His flat demeanor often seems robotic. Can robots win Survivor? Are they even eligible? And can we please get Robot Survivor into production immediately?

Probst’s Take: If Jaison makes it to the end, he’s capable of a very compelling argument as to why he deserves the million.

OVERALL ODDS: 10-1     

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MICK

Why He’ll Win: He was voted tribal leader even though he was totally unqualified and did nothing to earn it. Foreshadowing, anyone?

Why He Won’t: The anesthesiologist practically put us to sleep all season with his (lack of) gameplay. At some point you have to do something.

Probst’s Take: To win he’ll need to face the jury, pull a mask off his face, and say ”I was playing y’all!”

OVERALL ODDS: 8-1     

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RUSSELL

Why He’ll Win: No one has played the game better. Russell found three hidden idols and got swing vote Shambo to flip.

Why He Won’t: Should the Super Survivor make it to the end, he will come face-to-face with his own personal kryptonite: one seriously bitter jury.

Probst’s Take: He could easily make it to finals, but can he get the jury vote? It’s either a slam dunk or a shutout.

OVERALL ODDS: 6-1

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NATALIE

Why She’ll Win: She is the Amber to Russell’s Boston Rob — the nicer, prettier, more easily digestible option for vindictive jury members.

Why She Won’t: She could still be seen as a mere coattail-rider. Which she is.

Probst’s Take: She’s played a very quiet but effective game. But if she makes it to the end, she will have to work hard to convince the jury that she deserves the money.

OVERALL ODDS: 3-1

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Jeff Probst blogs ‘Survivor: Samoa’: episode #13

Man, I gotta say… another awesome episode. Yeah I know I’m biased, but come on, that was a great show!

And now there is absolutely no debate. Foa Foa has done it. They have come back from an eight to four deficit and now are in charge of the game. Think of the odds Vegas would have given you on that not happening. Well, Vegas wouldn’t actually give you any odds, since they know the show has already been taped and they know that I would have emptied my bank account to take that bet and would now be retired living in Palau.

FIRST IMMUNITY CHALLENGE
Nobody ever said all challenges would be created equal. If there is one consistent element of Survivor challenges it’s that they’re typically not things you can practice at home. When’s the last time anybody went bowling… using a coconut for the ball. But it was a little bit exciting, right? I loved Jaison pacing around the deck “visualizing” his final immunity winning toss. But hey, it paid off and kept Jaison in the game one more day.

NATALIE DOES HER LAUNDRY
It was a small moment but I hope you caught it as it speaks to the essence of Survivor. Natalie, in the midst of living on an island with a group of strangers, battling physically, emotionally, and socially for a million dollar prize still takes the time to wash and then hang her underwear on a branch in an attempt to keep them clean. You don’t get that moment on any other show.

FIRST TRIBAL COUNCIL
I hated to see ole Danger Dave go home. It’s no secret I root for the guy. He should be proud he hung in there a long time in a very tough game, but now it’s jury time, brotha.

Monica is a risky player. All she had to do was say, “If you say Dave, I say Dave” and let it go. But Monica was playing to WIN, not take second. I appreciate that kind of play very much. The fact that it didn’t work is irrelevant. You have to be willing to make those kinds of moves to have any shot of winning.

THIS IS HOW YOU PLAY SURVIVOR
When Russell began to get worried about Mick turning on him he made a statement that speaks to the kind of game he is playing:

Russell: “That worries me that he’s gonna send me home, cause that’s what I would do.”

That sentence, especially those last six words, “cause that’s what I would do” is the absolute essence of how you should always play Survivor. John Nash, the dude that was the inspiration for the movie, “A Beautiful Mind” spelled it out clearly in his thoughts on game theory. He said you must always make your best move based on the assumption that the other person is making their best move. That means you have to get inside their head, think what their best move is, assume they will make that move and based on that make your best move.

When Russell says, “cause that’s what I would do” that is precisely what he is doing. That is how you have to play Survivor. It’s one of the main reasons Russell has been so successful in this game. He is playing an extremely intelligent game. Don’t judge that book by its cover or the lack of a tooth here or there, the guy is putting that little pirate head to good use.

SECOND IMMUNITY CHALLENGE
Hmm… might as well just use the same line I used when describing the first immunity challenge:

“Nobody ever said all challenges would be created equal. If there is one consistent element of Survivor challenges it’s that they’re typically not things you can practice at home. When’s the last time anybody…. had to jump on a board to launch a bag into a basket 12 feet in the air.”

Thirty-three days of no food reduced Monica’s body weight to such a low level that the poor thing didn’t weigh enough to even get the bag close to the basket above her head. Worse news, Brett won immunity. It forced her into a desperate position – convince two people from Foa Foa to turn on one of their own.

AND SO SHE TURNED UP THE HEAT
Monica did a good job of stirring up the dust. She did such a good job that it almost worked. And she brought up a topic that doesn’t get much attention but is often a major factor in who ends up winning the game…

I CAN MAKE OR BREAK YOU ON THE JURY
Okay, you want insight, here’s some insight. When Monica uttered those words to Russell: “I can make or break you on the jury” it was a million dollar threat. Mark my words… A million dollar THREAT.

When someone is voted out and joins the jury, there is absolutely nothing to stop them from talking to other jury members and trying to influence the vote at the final tribal council. A disgruntled jury member, (wait is that redundant?) could easily influence another jury member simply by making up a story that never happened and attribute it to someone who has made it to the final. In fact, it’s possible that one jury member could influence an entire jury. Even if we could keep the jury separated right up until tribal council, they could still talk and whisper to each other. So, what this means is you have to play an even better social game than it might appear. You have to develop such strong personal relationships that you are “lie proof” and that is not easy to do… but it is achieveable.

This season is still waaaaay up in the air. So many different ways it could turn depending on who makes it to the final.

We have two weeks left. Next Thursday and then the finale the following Sunday.

She’s Big, She’s Bad and She’s Gone.

She should have played a quiet game and sweet talked people into voting out the FF4 out, instead she sat back got paranoid and helped vote out Galu after Galu. Now she decides to become big, bad and bold and make a move. The Gnome Prince and his band of Merry Trolls can’t be swayed by the Medusa Monster. The remaining Purple People Eaters just sit back and wait. At the Tribal Council, Medusa decides to bad mouth Sir Gnome. However the mighty Prince decides to wear his Power of Immunity Necklace and tell Medusa what she can do with her power. Jeff the mighy King of Probstville questions the Princes move. The Prince hints at, “It is what it is”! Lets vote and see who carries the power bucket. After a 5 - 2 vote the Smiling Medusa is set on vacation in Pondersaville with the other Purple Punks who are feeding on Probstville goodies!

Monica’s Final Words

Monica the day after

Monica – Ponderosa Pt.1

Monica – Ponderosa Pt.2

Monica – Ponderosa Pt.3

Monica – Ponderosa – Pt.4

You can call me anything, Just don’t call me out @ Tribal Council.

Monica just had to play it so cocky that she forgot it was going to cost her $1,000,000.

The competitions were simple ones. First up was “Survivor Coconut Bowling. They played it as an elimination style head to head matches.

First round:  Shambo beat Natalie 9 – 6       Russell beat Brett  4 – 0      Jaison beat Monica  8 – 0 &  Dave beat Mick  10 – 0 Second round:  Shambo beat Russell  5 – 4  &    Jaison beat Dave  7 – 0                                                                                                  Final round:  Jaison beat Shambo  2 – 0  to win Individual Immunity

We didn’t get to see much talk about who to evict back at camp before Tribal Council.  Shambo wanted to get Dave at the last TC, so most talked centered on getting Dave. Monica tried some BS with Russell to put the kibosh on Shambo for the next victim. Dave also told Russell he thought Sham needed to go to save him for another day.   At Tribal Council the vote was in: Dave was out 

Dave’s Final Words

Dave the Day after    This man has such a big ego. He actually thought he could win the game. The dude is a wimp. He should have put Shambo in her place over the chicken!

Dave at Ponderosa – Pt.1

Dave at Ponderosa – Pt.2

Back at camp it seems everyone is paranoid over what Russell is going to do! Monica started a bash Russell campaign. Russell needs to go, etc,etc…….   Talk, Talk, Talk but we know who leads this tribe! Bretts name was the leading vote getter. After some quick editing on all thecharacter bashing they were off to the next challenge.

They called it “Walk on Water“  because they didn’t have to swim out to the bags that were needed to complete this challenge.  After some back and forth lead changes, Brett won the challenge and Individual Immunity. Looks like a life saver for Brett at tribal council!

Again back at camp Monica keeps her bad talk about Russell and that he needs to be evicted. Russell has a different idea.  Monica  is being ignored by FF, too bad Monica!  After more edited conversations, we again go to Tribal Council.

Russell pulls one of the boldest moves ever at a Tribal Council. He pulls out his HII and puts it on. Jeff is amazed at what Russell just did.  So much for talk, on to the vote!

Russell still has the HII and evevryone knows it. Will someone step up and make him play it or are they going to play it Russell’s way? We shall see!@!

It’s Thursday, It’s Russell let the Fireworks begin!

Are the fireworks about to blast off? How much editing has been done to peak our interest? What bold move is  Russell (The Gnome Prince) about to unleash at the Tribal Council? Can Russell manage to survive two Tribal Councils in one night? Is his FF4 team ready to disband and take him out? Will Shambo see her use no longer needed and go on a Samoan Vacation? Who will have the best facial expression during a Tribal Council? May the countdown begin ……………. 13 hours from post time, the world will be watching!

The Immunity Blog With Coach and Debbie

  

  

Coach  |  Monica Emerges as a Noble Warrior

December 9, 2009

Like the snakes of Medusa’s head that wriggle above her head so do the different strategies and shifting alliances writhe about in the game of Survivor. Sometimes they toil in agony and sometimes in pleasure coiling around the unsuspecting victim’s soul.

From a viewer’s point of view I have to say that this episode was so brilliantly put together with so many different people who could have been eliminated that I did not really guess who would be eliminated from this episode until the last vote was cast. Dave vs. Shambo, John vs. Jaison. Monica vs. the world. Wow what a gallimaufry!

The warrior’s code: Play the game with “Loyalty, integrity and respect.” Thus Monica opens the episode. In the dragonslayer’s blog after episode 10, did I not call the emergence of Monica as a noble warrior and ask her to be on my alliance? She is all the adjectives I have described and then some. I am not only including her in my warrior’s alliance, I would like to humbly ask her to be the leader.

My thoughts on the auction: you either come to play or you come with your hands in your pocket. This was by far the highest auction I’ve ever seen. Not one but two $500 dollar bids. Although I was surprised the Russell did not bid for the idol, the big time players going “all in” on their poker hands was Jaison and Mick, both for different reasons. And the first bid, 200 bucks, for the PB and J sandwich. Wow! Looks like most people came to play.

De-alliance time. I have carefully crafted my chosen ones so far and I think I am entitled to kicking someone out of the fold. Disappointment reigns supreme with Brett. You might go far and win this game by playing under the radar: BUT sitting on your hands, literally, at the auction was my last straw with you. What’s the matter! Make a move. Say something witty. Bid on a piece of pie. Do something! I’m voting you off my warrior alliance for now. I’ve never seen less action from a survivor in my life.

Shambo talking to the chickens. You grab for something out there, anything. You are starved, looking for affection. You know the animals won’t backstab you, so I guess I understand what she is going thru. But as Duk Koo Kim said before being destroyed by Boom Boom Mancini, it is “kill or be killed.” Thus the circle of life.

Dave vs. Shambo. Showdown at the OK corral. The chicken. The dream. The clairvoyance of Shambo. The madness of it all. As Nietzsche once said “There is always madness in love, but there is always reason in madness.” But looks like God did not give you that dream Shannon. Looks like you just made a major fool of yourself. Better luck next time writhing and squirming in the night with your dreams.

And Princess Debbie, I finally stand corrected when Jaison won challenge. In your own words “I finally won something” which I doff my hat to you; bow my dragon wing to say congrats on winning something finally. And the wisdom in talking to Mick about John and Shambo and Dave. Brilliant. You are finally starting to learn grasshopper of what it takes to be a Warrior in this game and not a bystander.

Jaison in the words of Ralph Marston: “Don’t lower your expectations to meet your performance. Raise your level of performance to meet your expectations. Expect the best of yourself, and then do what is necessary to make it a reality.”

Danger Dave: what a quote in tribal. “If things don’t go the way I expect them to go I will be shocked.” Such a double entendre in that one sentence. I loved it. And you were smart enough to escape the vote.

John I leave you with a quote. I am sad to see you go. Dennis Wholy once said “Expecting the world to treat you fairly because you are a good person is a little like expecting a bull not to attack you because you are a vegetarian.” This move did not make any sense, but you can receive the satisfaction knowing that the people who repudiated you have shot themselves in the foot and they will crumble and fall like the walls of Jerricho.

May the Dragonslayer’s immortal words, quotes and adjectives live on forever in your hearts and minds…

Coach   

 

Debbie  |  Mick and Jaison Finally Do Something!

December 9, 2009

Last week’s episode was just another clear example of Russell, at this point in the game, continuing to orchestrate every move in Samoa. Oddly enough, his mistake of telling John he had the idol, resulted in John’s elimination. When Russell admitted possessing the idol to John, I was shocked and wondered why in the world would he tell anyone? Obviously, Russell realized his mistake and quickly devised the plan to eliminate the “problem.”

Once again, Shambo did not disappoint this week. She is such a card. I have to say, I felt her pain when the chickens were killed. However, when you are starving and food is clucking away, who could resist? I loved her comment, “Shannon has lost her mind- code red emergency alert.” Shambo’s lack of social skills continues to amuse me. She actually believes she is control of this game.

The Food Auction is such an exciting event. I was thrilled to pay big money for French Fries with ketchup and mayonnaise. Yes, at that point I could not even count by 20’s. Jeff marveled in that mistake! Heck, you see food when you are starving and nothing else matters. I will never forget those fries, and yes, I too had apple pie…guess it is easy to make on location. I also believe John should have made the switch and bought the full pie to share. However, with how things played out, it would not have made a difference.

Coach, did you see Jaison spend all of auction money for an advantage in the challenge? I jumped out of my chair cheering. I was thrilled to see him make a great move. Also, not only was Mick eye candy this week, he actually made some strategic moves. I believe Mick and Jaison will prevail and start controlling the game. Both guys are very intelligent and are finally getting their heads into this game. The previews hinted to this fact. I was ecstatic to see the glimpse of the two of them FINALLY recognizing the need to eliminate Russell. I have said all along, they should have blind-sided Russell much earlier when Jaison knew he had an idol. However, I have to admit, Russell is why I am on edge weekly. I love watching him play this game. I would actually hate to see him go. He is the entertainment. I am concerned how the show will play out without his weekly antics. Natalie continues to amaze me. Her little frame holding the log longer than most proved her strength and determination. I believe Natalie may be a much stronger threat than anyone is recognizing at this point. She is so sweet and quiet so no one is noticing the real threat she is in this game.

Two seasons in a row, blind-sides rule this game. John (and Shambo) was completely shocked, when Jeff read the votes. Great move by Russell! As I reflect, I believe he has masterminded each elimination of those on his tribe, and of course, the ones since the merge.

Will the tables turn on Russell next week? I can’t wait to see.

Debbie