Zapatera has got to be setting the record for the dumbest tribe ever.
1) They throw a challenge to get rid of Russell who is a good player, they could have evicted him at anytime later in the game. 2) Ralph tells everyone that he has an Idol. That move has been proven to be pure stupidity. 3) It took them three TC’s to finally evict Sarita. She proved to be worthless. 4)They continue to blow the challenges after blowing leads which should have helped them win. “and lord help us all” 5) After merging they fail to bring Matt into the fold for help and then forget to protect him at TC and don’t tell him the plan to vote for Grant.
Matt being so innocent and trusting God, couldn’t see his old tribe leaving im out of all their conversations and not realizing that they were after him again. Dumb, Dumb, Dumb. Zapatera and their “tribe-thinking” still have no leader to guide them and will soon fall by the wayside.
This now becomes Rob’s game to lose unless members of Zapatera can start winning challenges and/or getting some Ometempe members to switch sides. After the stupid move to use the Idol on Steve, they now have no protection and are short on numbers. No one still knows that Rob has the Idol. Phillip and Grant know his has some clues but don’t realize he has the Idol.
The girls on both teams seem totally lost and are following along with whatever they are told to do. None of them seem to want to make an all girl allaiance. Grant is Rob’s tag-a-long buddy with no game of his own. Phillip is a wandering Gypsy and has no idea how close he has come to being evicted. Rob now needs to keep Phillip close to home so he doesn’t go commando and join the Zapatera members to get Rob out.
Phillip is a production gold mine. He has the love/hate combo that makes for good reality TV. As long as he stays weird he has TV time to himself and production will push him as far as they can.
Ralph is a good hearted old country boy with the brains if of an Ox. He links muscle over brain matter will work in this game. Well, Ralph proved himself wrong by playing the Idol on the wrong person. Steve and the girls were clueless going into the TC and I have no idea what David was thinking. I thought for sure David would catch on to what Rob was doing.
Matt, however, basically evicted himself when he voted for Steve. I saw it coming a mile away by the editing of the vote reading. When Jeff got to the fifth vote for Grant and the next one was for Steve, the writing was on the wall. The next six votes were going to be for Matt. Well, Matt now must endore another to weeks on Redemption Island and win a possible seven more duels to make it to the final four. Is it possible he can get there only to be voted out again by Rob?
The duel that sent Sarita home lasted longer than I thought. They made you think Matt might lose because of the cut on his foot but he managed just fine.
We all knew the merge was coming and that would get the big meal. I liked the fact that they had to build a new hut and that the Ometempe tribe put the tarp on their side of the hut and not on the Zapatera side at all making for a wet night of sleep.
At camp there was quite a bit of talk but we never really heard anything about how Matt after he talked to Rob. This in itself was a dumb move because it gave Rob more ammunition to tell his tribe mates that Matt was still a threat.
In this game you have to learn the old addage, “Silence is Golden”. The less you tell people the better off you are in the game. Just follow along with the gang and keep yourself out of the limelite. This way the only way you get in trouble is in the challenges. If you can win them all great, otherwise try to finish in the middle of the pack.
The next big move will have be when you win a challenge and reward goes with it. WHO do you share or take with on the rewards? This will start the rift between players and the bad mouth talking will start. It’s a wait and see game for us now and I for one hope the merge makes for some intgeresting game play. Will they bring another HII into the game? If so, who will find the clue? Will the clue help them find it? Will they share the clue? Hmmmmmmmmmmm, and good old Ponderosa is just around the corner.
I am guessing that almost everybody, short of Sarita’s family, was pulling for Matt to win the last duel before the merge. It has nothing to do with Sarita and everything to do with pulling for the underdog. Matt earned his shot back in the game.
I’m surprised that some of you are not enjoying Redemption Island. I certainly get a lot of comments from people who are enjoying it but I do get some from people who think it’s a bore.
I’m shocked that anybody could be bored with the Matt/Redemption Island storyline. But hey, I get it, everybody has their likes/dislikes.
As I’ve said many times the duels are put on the grid and built long before we know who will be competing. So imagine Matt’s surprise when the one challenge he didn’t want – a challenge that involved using the side of his now injured food – was the exact duel that was on the grid. Crazy Survivor luck.
Had he lost, it would have sucked to lose due to an injury but it would have been completely fair.
Truth is, I thought he was in real danger of losing. These challenges so often favor women and with his cut foot I thought he might be in trouble.
Ah there is so much fun about the merge.
From a show point of view it’s a breath of fresh air as it almost always shakes things up. Solid alliances are now in danger. People on the bottom now have a new shot at moving up.
The Survivors get a merge feast, which always lifts their spirits and anytime you can lift their spirits it’s a good thing. That might sound counter to what you would think we want to have happen, but the truth is there is so much drama on a day-to-day basis, that a bit of happiness is always good. Balances things out.
They get new buffs, which invigorates them and often seems to refuel them.
And if I don’t have to be there, it’s an afternoon off for me!
Rob: (to tribe) Murlonio means from the sea, united.
Rob: (interview)“Murlonio doesn’t mean anything. It’s a joke between me and Amber.”
I’m laughing because I’m imagining the reaction of the rest of the tribe when they heard this for the first time last night while watching the show. It’s so 5th grade and it has absolutely no impact on the show, but it’s still funny. I’m sure Rob and Amber were cracking up last night every time “Murlonio” popped up on the screen. I’ll ask Rob to bring the stuffed animal to the live show.
THE BALANCING CHALLENGE
As simple as this challenge is to recreate it’s still the same creative process as you have with an elaborate maze. You have an idea – let’s do something where they balance a ball on a plate. Then you play around with the idea and decide it’s too easy, we need to add a “wobble” element to it. But it’s still not hard enough, so we add another ball, and then another. Now we’re getting somewhere.
Most of our challenges first take shape months before we go to location. Our challenge team pitches us their slate of new challenges. In fact we’re doing this in two weeks here in LA in preparation for next year. The pitch is nothing more than ideas and sketches. After the pitch, some are approved, some are modified and some are sent back for re-tooling.
Once they’re approved they have to be built. This process can take between one to six weeks depending on the scope and size.
Once built they are then tested. During a test there are no cameras. Just our director, our dream team, our challenge producers and me.
Once we’re satisfied with the test block we move to a rehearsal. This requires our entire camera/audio operators, our director, challenge producers, dream team and all the support people.
We rehearse the challenge and give our final notes. Then the challenge is ready for the Survivors.
We do this whether it is a three person final episode endurance challenge or a two-tribe, 20 person boat race. We always follow the same process.
THE BIGGEST BLINSIDE OF THE SEASON
The second blindside of Matt was a great move by Rob and not a surprising one. Rob blindsided Matt the first time around so Rob had to believe he was a target. I’m not sure Matt had any real shot at surviving but he sealed his fate when he told Rob the truth that he considered switching to the other side. He just gave up way too many details. It’s like telling your girlfriend, “I was thinking about breaking up with you, but I decided not to.” What? You don’t tell them that. You either do it or you don’t — but sharing e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g is not always the right choice.
It makes sense that Matt was honest. It’s in his nature. But like the tale of the frog and the scorpion, nature can work for you and against you. This time the “nature” of Rob worked against Matt.
Mike gave it a great shot. He said all the right things. Offering to sabotage his own alliance and join forces with Matt in order to further his own game. He made the only real move he had at that point and it’s exactly what I would have done. It was a big move. Just because it didn’t work doesn’t mean it wasn’t a smart move.
The big question I have with Matt centers around how this impacts Matt’s faith in people.
Blindsided two times by people you trust… I wonder if it has changed Matt’s view of his fellow man or is Matt wise enough to realize that Survivor is just a game. It’s an ugly game at times but it’s just a game.
REDEMPTION ISLAND BEGINS AGAIN
Yes this was in the plan from the beginning. Redemption Island was going to resume immediately after the merge. In fact, when we pitched CBS one of the scenarios we gave them was the person on Redemption Island could earn their way back into the game and then be voted right out again. But nobody imagined that one guy would win six straight duels get back into the game at the merge and be the first person voted out again.
If there is a silver lining for Matt, it is the fact that if he can survive Redemption Island again and make it back to the final, his odds for winning are huge. At this point he is one of the biggest underdogs in Survivor history.
See ya next week!