Survivor: Cambodia

Episode 9 – That Was Badass!

Previously on Survivor:

After the merge no one was taking their second chance for granted…

Stephen in confessional: “You got to hit the ground running in new-school Survivor.”

Two immunity idols had already been found.

We saw Kelley and Jeremy grabbing their idols and we heard Jeremy saying that he loves it.

Joe continued to win and Wentworth, Abi, and Ciera were on the bottom, fighting to stay alive.

We heard Ciera talking first to the girls: “I’m so tired of their half-assed plans” and then in confessional: “I’m going to be throwing anything that I can throw hoping to get somebody to catch on to it.”

At Tribal Council, it was clear that the game of Survivor had evolved…

(That was underlined by Stephen’s comment that there wasn’t a hierarchy)

…and Wentworth decided to take the game into her own hands…

(We see Jeremy’s shocked expression and Spencer’s approval)

…Putting an end to Savage’s second chance.

This summary sides with Ciera’s point of view that no one was playing to win. The “official” version of the story is that “they” only have half-assed plans while the girls are fighting to stay alive and Kelley took the game into her own hands. This forces us to question the future of all the players in the Bayon alliance. In this version, the editors, using Ciera’s words, are portraying them all as incompetents. Of course, Kelley needed to play her idol to stay in the game and eliminate Savage so the women’s victory came at some cost. Despite losing a member, the alliance still appeared strong so they couldn’t be that incompetent…yet.   This episode would give us more clues.

That was Badass!

Night 21

Expressing their admiration, Spencer said: “#HiddenImmunity idol”, Jeremy added: “Freakin’ Wentworth” while Stephen concluded: “That was epic.”

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Kelley apologized for getting a little worked up.   Jeremy said that it was badass.

Isn’t it interesting that the three guys that expressed admiration would also be the same ones to vote with the 3 women in the end? This makes me wonder if they were planning something already.

Kelley in confessional: “I was going to explode at Tribal Council. Holy Smokes: “Hi! I’m Kelley Wentworth and I just idoled Andrew Savage out of Survivor: Second Chance. Thank you! I feel like I’ve come so far from Blood versus Water to where I am now here.” We heard Ciera’s comment at this point: “Great play by Kelley Wentworth.” Kelley’s confessional continued: “I feel like I’m a different person. I wanted to take risks and make moves. It’s like the best feeling I’ve had out here in 21 days.”

Talking to Joe, Kimmi said: “It has to be one of those three girls next time because you can’t let the three of them all of a sudden become friends with Tash and Jeremy. Nope! Now we have to break up the little witches’ coven.”

Stephen heard that and commented in his interview: “Kimmi is calling Ciera, Wentworth, and Abi the three witches and it’s just like the three witches from Macbeth who are stirring their cauldron: “Boil, boil, toil and trouble. Abi is boil– she’s hot at it. Ciera is toil– Let’s make a move; let’s make a move!” And Wentworth is trouble– she’s bringing out idols. I don’t want to be like King Duncan who gets killed in the night. I want to be the one doing the killing in the night. Those witches are brewing something epic, but how do I get the witches to make the potion that is right for me?”

Macbeth killed Duncan after being pushed to do so by Lady Macbeth. While Macbeth became king, he and his lady both became mad. While Stephen brings up real classics, he doesn’t select the ones that end well for the character he wants to play. What, if anything, can Macbeth tell us about the outcome of Survivor: Second Chance?

Day 22

Keith, Stephen, and Jeremy were out by the ocean, still talking about Kelley’s idol.

Stephen realized that the idol was coming back so they all went searching.

Jeremy’s confessional: “Savage going home screws me. I had another man that nobody really liked and I knew that was like a shield for me, but even though I trust Stephen and I have one idol to protect me, I need two idols because they are coming after me. I got to look; I got to bust my behind again. Oh, my God!”

Jeremy seems really fixated on keeping guys around, so much so that it feels like a woman could surprise him.

Keith and Tasha were by the water well while Joe looked around the strange looking tree near their mail box.

Joe’s confessional: “I got to find that immunity idol because now people are really going: “OK, Joe has won two immunities; he’s got to go. He loses; he’s got to go.” I spent thirty minutes today looking for the immunity idol that is going to be crucial to my survival. I just don’t know where it is.”

Thirty minutes Joe? Don’t exert yourself too much. If only he had spent a little more time looking in that tree. He must have been kicking himself watching Jeremy later at that same tree.

Abi had a pressing matter, so she interrupted Joe’s search!

Abi’s confessional: “I run into Joe looking for an idol because he knows he is in trouble and he’s getting nervous. I love it.”

After doing what she had to do, Abi told Kelley that she caught Joe looking for the idol.

Kelley’s confessional: “It’s like there’s this group of eight that is voting together supposedly, but there is paranoia within the eight which is great for me. I am so hoping that people are finally ready to get this game started. Come on, my Lord: Please! Let’s have a big move at the next Tribal.”

We saw Joe after Kelley said this making it obvious that he had become her target. We have to make note that Kelley had two confessionals in that opening segment. After that move at Tribal Council, one was expected but two is a way to put the spotlight on a player. Even the first confessional could have ended after she told us that she has come a long way since Blood versus Water. Adding the rest presents her as a player to watch, one that will make some important moves.

The Reward Challenge

Jeff reminded us that this challenge was done in Brains vs Brawn vs Beauty and that both Tasha and Spencer lost with Spencer being the one doing the puzzle.

For once, we heard how the schoolyard pick worked:

  • Tasha was a captain and she selected Joe, Spencer, Stephen and Ciera.
  • Wiglesworth was the other captain and she selected Jeremy, Keith, Wentworth and Kimmi.
  • Abi was not selected and the poor thing had no chance at reward.

I put the players in the order I suppose they were selected. Since Joe was on Tasha’s team, it stands to reason that she had first pick, leaving Jeremy available when Kelly made her pick. With the next to last choice, Wiglesworth probably had Wentworth, Kimmi, Ciera and Abi available so she picked Kelley instead of Kimmi, her ally.   (I can be fairly sure of this because I doubt Ciera would have been picked by Tasha if Wentworth were still available.)

Wiglesworth’s team soon fell behind and never caught up. Joe quickly went through the maze with his key while the teal team was still trying to figure where to put the poles.

Spencer and Ciera worked on the puzzle, turning the challenge into “one of the biggest blow-outs in Survivor history” according to Jeff.

That Hurts!

That Hurts!

When the teal team finally went through the maze, we heard Jeff say: “Jeremy is down with a big hard fall. Kelly also takes a fall.”

Kelly will soon take a fall that will hurt much more than this one. Will the same happen to the Cambridge fireman?

Spencer released the flag before the teal team could reach their puzzle box. Jeff mentioned that it was redemption for Spencer and Tasha.

Keith could only spit.

When the purple team left, we heard Wentworth say: “Bye guys have fun.”

Have Fun!

Have Fun!

With his team heading back to camp, we heard Jeremy’s confessional: “We weren’t even close. It was embarrassing. It was like this whole day is a waste of a day for me. This is a bad one. Last night was bad: Savage went home. Today is bad. It goes up and down; today’s a down.”

The contrast between Kelley’s positive attitude and Jeremy’s negativity is quite notable. It’s rare that we see such negativity in a winner. Even when Earl had to endure the terrible conditions in Ravu we heard him saying that he will soldier on. Tony had his down moments, but I don’t recall a similar confessional. This is more like Rodney in Worlds Apart.

The Reward

Now that the clues to the idol aren’t given to the winners but can simply be grabbed in a tree, going on reward has a big disadvantage.

Joe in confessional: “We had an amazing reward: massages, a fresh shower, and food. Food in this game is so valuable: It keeps your mind right and keeps your body right. Going into an immunity challenge, it gives you a competitive edge over everybody else. We have a little more in the tank.

Ciera’s confessional: “There’s definitely strategy going into a reward. It gives you a little bit of alone time with a different group of people that maybe you wouldn’t get in camp.”

With Joe taking his shower, Ciera asked Spencer, Stephen, and Tasha if they were going to talk strategy at all.

Stephen’s interview: “As the game goes on, you have fewer and fewer votes and you need to use every one of those votes strategically.   Wentworth, Abi, and Ciera, they are working harder than our alliance because they are desperate. So, those are the ones that deserve to be here.”

We have to note Fishbach just told us that Wentworth, Abi, and Ciera are the ones that deserve it more than those in Stephen’s alliance.  

In the middle of Stephen’s confessional, we heard Ciera talking to the group: “I know you are close to Jeremy but if you go to the end with Jeremy, you don’t win.”

That seemed to catch Tasha’s attention and it also must be noted. Ciera’s comment sounds a lot like what Malcolm said about Denise.

The second part of Stephen’s confessional: “In this season of Survivor, everyone sees the hierarchy and everyone wants to flip it on its head. So, to play this old-school game where we are in an alliance of five and that five has a four within it and a three within it and a two within it: It’s not going to hold. It’s going to get dissolved.”

Macbeth and Lady Macbeth were shown when Stephen mentioned this. These two will certainly cause a lot of chaos. I suppose that many torches will get snuffed because of the bond between those two.

Tasha asked Ciera what she thought of Wiglesworth.

Ciera said that she’d also win because she is smart; she has that first season thing going and she’s talked to everybody.

For anyone who says that a “bad edit” doesn’t exist, who think that players are invisible because they don’t have anything to interesting to say or present, then this remark is for them. Wiglesworth talked to everybody and was considered as big of a threat to win as Jeremy, but we haven’t seen any of it.

The third part of Stephen’s confessional: “I think there are voting blocs that make sense for the moment and the next day that could be completely out the window. I think this is moving much faster and very different than the game has ever in the past.”

Day 22

The women were preparing a big meal.

Jeremy’s confessional: “I’m pissed off that we lost and not that we just lost but because we lost by so much. We got crushed. But, with only five other people, they are cooking and talking and everything; they are going to let me go and be alone. I went and looked for the idol.” He found the clue at the bottom of the tree near their mail post, the tree where Joe had been looking when Abi came running. “…It was just staring at me.” The clue told him to go along the same trail they took for the merge. “It wasn’t a great day today but things are looking up…As soon as the moon went down, the team that won came back from their spa treatment and usually everybody is in the bed, ready for bed so I was like: This is going to be so easy. I’ll get up and they aren’t going to be watching me. But this was ridiculous. Everybody was by the fire, hanging out. No one ever does this; it was crazy. Finally, I said I gotta go to the bathroom because that food messed with my stomach. I just made a dash for it; I just took off. It’s pitch black. There are rocks; there are trees. I don’t know what’s out there; there are snakes and everything…

They call that a Hidden Idol!

They Call That a Hidden Idol!

I see a torch. From a distance, I see a little glow so I took off after it. Idols, this season, there are no two idols that look the same. Hanging from the lantern was this beautiful thing. With two idols, I can be a little more aggressive. This is Val’s idol. Val is my wife. Val is my best friend, you know; I can’t keep it bottled up anymore: I’m doing it all for her. I just want to make her life a little easier, I want to make Jay and Kim’s life a little easier and I want to make my next child’s life a little easier. I don’t even know if it’s a boy or a girl and that has been bothering me a little bit. I know that people are after me and I got to figure when I can use these idols. I got to use them at the right time. I just want Val to win, you know. She deserves it more than me, you know.”

Imagine! Now they have lights telling the players where to look for “Hidden” Immunity Idols. Soon it will be neon signs! This was a much better confessional for Jeremy. Some may say that he is thinking about his wife and family too much and that it will distract him for the game, but I don’t think this was the intent of this scene. Jeremy is presented in such a way that he would make a very popular winner. I’m a little tired of all these strong guys that find idols and walk on to an easy victory but many fans love that story.   When Jeremy found his first idol he said he would bring it home and now he says this is Val’s idol. That makes me think he won’t play either idol but it seems unlikely that he will be voted out with both idols in pocket.   It could be that he doesn’t need to play either idol or that he gets voted out after they expire.

Day 24

The wind instruments introduced the kooky musical theme just when Stephen walked into view.

King Duncan and his Ally

King Duncan and His Ally

 

Stephen spotted Joe and Kelly talking by the ocean.

Stephen’s confessional: “Joe and Wiglesworth, I think, are super close. They have a little bit of a brother-sister thing happening there or an aunt-nephew– I don’t know–some sort of relationship that is developing and I’ve been nervous about it.” Kelly told Joe that she trusted him, Kimmi and Keith, but not the three girls. Stephen continued: “They have sort of a shared arrogance about how awesome they are. I’m tired of the way this game is going. There are huge threats in this game and everyone is too timid to make a move. My second chance is about having a game of my own that I can point to and say: These are the moves that I made, so I want to build something with the three witches. They are on the bottom and they are desperate to make a move.”

I don’t think the viewers share that view of Kelly and Joe. Kelly has been much too hidden for anyone to think that she has been arrogant while Joe’s good nature has never been questioned by the audience; therefore, it seems that Stephen gets more blame than credit for this move. His three witches had to make a move, but he didn’t really have to. That makes Wiglesworth the victim of Stephen’s ambition.

Stephen wanted to talk with Ciera, Wentworth, and Abi about his plan, but he started by saying that they didn’t trust each other and they shouldn’t trust each other.

Stephen really started on the wrong foot with that approach. So much so that he didn’t know where to go from there. Luckily, Ciera saved him from his predicament.

Ciera said she was up for anything, adding that they would write down whatever Stephen wants them to write down. She asked him if he wanted to eliminate Joe. Stephen said that everyone wanted to boot Joe but that there were other power players like Wiglesworth. Abi interjected that Wiglesworth had relationships with everyone and she was nice to everyone. “Her social game is on point.” “I’d get rid of Wigles,” said Ciera.

The editors hid Kelly’s great social game very well. It’s a bit strange that Stephen only named Wiglesworth as a power player. Did he name others like Tasha and Jeremy? Those are certainly power players that Stephen will need to eliminate at some point.

Ciera’s confessional: “Abi, Kelley Wentworth and myself are very clearly on the bottom. Kelley Wentworth pulled out that immunity idol and booted Savage out. Now it’s like people are a little bit scrambled; they are coming to us and they want to talk, and it’s just funny because where have you been the last twenty days?”

People could ask the same of Ciera who had been fairly hidden for a large chunk of those twenty days but, in reality, the onus was on Stephen. Continuing the recap’s theme, the editors are telling us that the Bayon players weren’t really playing.

The Immunity Challenge

Spencer and Tasha had both participated in this challenge before but both had lost (to Woo).

It started to rain just when the challenge got underway.

Woo had won that challenge using “toe-shoes” and it seemed to give him an advantage. I wonder if production decided to make it a rule that the players had to be barefoot because Kelley had been wearing the same type of shoes but wasn’t using them in the challenge.

Eight minutes in the challenge, Jeff said that success in the game is often dictated by making the right decision at the right time. Jeff released buoys and said that the first player to touch his buoy would get an advantage in the game. The players were faced with a dilemma: Racing to the buoy meant giving up a chance at immunity but gave them a chance at the advantage.

Quickly Stephen and Spencer jumped in and the race was on. Surprisingly, Stephen won it! Jeff remarked that could have been the million dollar decision that Stephen needed to make. He added that nobody else took the bait and we saw Kelley with her eyes shut, as if wondering if she made the right decision. Stephen said he made the decision immediately while Spencer said he was one millisecond too slow.

Like the last time, the transition to the top proved costly for many players: Wentworth, Jeremy, Ciera, Kimmi and Tasha fell almost immediately. It was down to Keith, Abi, Wiglesworth and Joe. Abi looked like a statue out there. A struggling Joe looked worried.

Abi had a lowest center of gravity so that must have helped.

Keith lost his balance just before the end of the second round. With Joe wobbling on his perch, Jeff mentioned that he was still up there: “It doesn’t have to be pretty on Survivor.” Keith greeted that by spitting.

Then the players had to transition to stand on one foot and it proved too difficult for Wiglesworth: She never found her balance so Jeff had to disqualify her.

With her butt getting cramps, Abi fell in giving Joe his third immunity.

Shoot!

Shoot!

We saw Kelley expressing her frustration when she realized that Joe would be safe. That tells us she wasn’t kidding when she said he was dead to her.

Jeff handed a piece of bamboo to Stephen with the advantage hidden inside.

Stephen’s commented: “It was amazing! Jeff Probst said Stephen wins! He didn’t say ‘Stephen wins immunity,’ but this was the next best thing. Tonight, this freakin’ Wigles thing is happening. I don’t care how it’s happening but it’s happening and maybe I break out my advantage.”

Day 24

The rain hadn’t let up during the players’ walk back to camp. They all looked miserable.

Abi said that Joe will be winning immunity forever.

Kimmi in confessional: “Joe won immunity which is fine because I really need the witches to start getting voted out because I don’t want them getting too much power.”

Tasha and Kimmi urged the group to split the votes by putting five votes on Wentworth and three on Ciera. Kimmi added that it wouldn’t matter what the three witches decided to do.

Kelly’s confessional: “Tribal Council is coming up and some members of the larger alliance are plotting to vote out Wentworth or Ciera. We are going to split votes.”

They had five guys and three girls so it was easy to remember the assignments: The guys would vote Wentworth and the women would vote Ciera.

Tasha in confessional: “Right now, we want Wentworth to go home. She’s really savvy in this game, she’s already played an idol, so she’s building her résumé and she needs to go.”

Putting Kimmi, Kelly and Tasha’s confessionals in quick succession suggests that the editors see those three as the real witches! Neither had a confessional in the previous episode and they had been fairly invisible for a large part of the season then suddenly they get back-to-back-to back confessionals all saying the same thing. In Macbeth, the witches gave accurate prophecies about the protagonist’s future so it’s interesting that Kimmi talked about the girls getting power and Tasha mentioned Kelley building her résumé. Will these prophecies prove accurate also?

It was time for Stephen to read his advantage. Stephen’s confessional: “I won this mystery advantage at the immunity challenge today.” The instructions told him that he could steal someone’s vote. “This is a game changer! This is amazing. This is beyond my wildest dreams. In Survivor: No Collar, Blue Collar, White Collar, Dan won the right to cast another vote at Tribal Council, but being able to steal someone’s vote can shift the entire power dynamic of the game. Wow! I’m in an insanely powerful position unless I screw it up. I’m not going to use it tonight. I know that I’m safe. That would be a waste tonight. Tonight, I can fix with just my wits and hustle. This is like a game-winning advantage.”

While Dan’s advantage wasn’t as interesting, Stephen could still get voted out when he uses it. He’s a much smarter player than Dan, but there would be nothing he could do if they gang up on him to get rid of that advantage. Was it smart to go for it?

Talking to Kelley, Stephen said he could get more people on board with eliminating Wiglesworth.

Kelley’s confessional: “I feel like, if this blindside works and Wiglesworth goes home, then there are new people who are willing to work with me. I feel much more confident going forward in this game. If it works. I just hope that I don’t go home tonight.”

Huddling in the woods, Stephen told Jeremy and Spencer that the girls wanted to vote Wiglesworth so that she would go home if the three of them voted for her also. Spencer wanted to know where that would leave them. Stephen said that with the girls, they would be six and in a great position instead of being on the bottom. Spencer objected that they weren’t on the bottom, but Stephen countered by saying that three players weren’t at the top in an eleven person tribe.

Stephen’s confessional: “I don’t want to make an alliance with the people on the bottom and then get picked off with them. I want to build this voting bloc; we are talking voting blocs here and every Tribal is going to be a new voting bloc.

Spencer said that he’d love to remove Wiglesworth from the game, but that would mean trusting three people that they can’t trust.

Spencer’s confessional: “Would I love to take control of the game? Yes. Can I make it happen in a way that doesn’t destroy my game? I’ve never been more confused by any economics, calculus, statistics problem than I am about this one.”

Jeremy’s confessional: “We are all set with taking out one of the three witches. I don’t know what to think of Stephen because he is running around… Everybody is trying to play their own game, but I just want everyone to be on the same page. The person I still trust the most is Stephen. I’m just trying to lock down my alliance and I’m trying to work these other voting blocs. My problem is: If we take Wiglesworth away, it will be four people who come back to camp blindsided: Kimmi, Tasha, Keith and Joe. I don’t want to have to worry, but I want to make the right decision and the right move. I don’t want to just jump ship and do it so fast.

The violins were playing quick notes that made for a very nervous melody. That was suggesting that this was an impulsive move. Both Spencer and Jeremy worried about this move, so it seems it won’t go over very well. That could be five jury votes that they put in jeopardy. They will have to do some serious damage control.

Tribal Council

It was wet and cold, but the fire felt good.

Stephen told Jeff that they were so cold it was hard to think straight.

Was this to tell us that their decision was the result of not thinking straight?

Keith agreed saying he wasn’t thinking straight either after having only 2 hours of sleep in the last 36.

The sound of thunder startled them.

Wentworth told Jeff that she hoped her move with the idol had opened some eyes. Her next comment was captioned: “I don’t know that the vote will be as clear cut as people seem to think it will be.”

That seemed to surprise Joe and Tasha.

Ciera agreed with Jeff that it doesn’t really matter that they were on the bottom at the last Tribal Council. For her it was: “Play or get played.”

Joe said that you had to go after the people who were coming after you.

Joe missed his chance and Kelly was about to pay for it.

Jeremy said that an alliance of nine was huge but that this game was about voting blocs. He was still trying to figure things out.

Spencer said it was still about trust and not letting that trust disappear when you vote.

Jeff pointed out that what Spencer was saying was that the votes ultimately tell the truth.

Wiglesworth hoped that meant everybody would do what they were supposed to do, that everyone plays their part. She felt confident that they would.

Oh, the irony.

Probe went back to Fishbach and the theory of evolution in the game.

Fishbach said that alliances weren’t as clear cut and defined as they have been in the past. People had to be flexible.

Tasha pointed out that even with voting blocs you need the play with people that you trusted. “At the end of the day, the voting bloc with the strongest alliance will dominate this game.”

Probe asked who was worried. Tasha, Fishbach, Wentworth, Abi, Spencer and Ciera raised their hands.

That was a different result than the last time I remember Jeff asking the question. The camera went to Wiglesworth because she hadn’t raised her hand.

Jeff said that half the group was truly concerned and Spencer said that they were bold enough to admit it.

It was time to vote.

We saw Tasha voting for Ciera, saying that she was hoping their plan would work.

Keith voted Wentworth while simply saying: “Sorry girl.”

Wentworth voted “Wiggles,” saying she hoped their plan would work and that there would be only one Kelley on this island.

Keith and Joe voted for Wentworth.

Tasha, Wiglesworth, and Kimmi voted for Ciera.

Abi, Ciera, Kelley, Spencer, Stephen and Jeremy voted against Wiglesworth.

Tasha, Kimmi, Keith and Joe looked baffled when Jeff made the final pronouncement. Wentworth was shown smiling at the jury. Kimmi was pouting when Kelly’s torch was snuffed.

Jeff said: “Tonight’s Tribal would seem to confirm that an evolution is happening in the gameplay of Survivor. I can’t wait to see where it goes.”

The Story

Kelly’s elimination gives us another example of Karma. A young 23-year-old during Borneo, Kelly has now reached the age that Gretchen had during that first season. Like Pagong’s survival expert, Kelly was well liked by everyone and the players said that she could very well win. Kelly was blindsided by an alliance (aka a voting bloc) that she didn’t see coming just like Gretchen. Tagi decided to boot Gretchen because Greg had won immunity, and likewise, the voting bloc wanted to eliminate Joe but went against his closest ally instead.

This makes us wonder about Stephen and Probst’s claim that this is a new evolution of Survivor! We can even wonder if anything we saw is really new. For example, Casaya went after Nick when Terry won immunity. We can even look back at Samoa and remember that after eliminating Erik Galu tried to rally by targeting Russell, but when his idol eliminated Kelly, the majority alliance fractured and members of Galu joined the Foa Foa voting bloc to remove Laura, ensuring Galu’s destruction. When Timbira turned against Brendan, the Jalapao Three used his former ally, Sierra, to break up Coach’s alliance.

We are told about shifting voting blocs, but one can wonder if it isn’t simply the pre-game alliances that are coming back into play now that the tribes have merged and the game has adopted its final format. For instance, Jeremy and Wentworth, the two old Hunahpu allies, must have talked, but according to the edit, they haven’t even said hello in private yet! Stephen had worked so well with Erinn that his association with Ciera seemed evident. As soon as they learned they could both be coming back, Stephen and Ciera must have talked and they could be now finally in a position to make those plans work. Are we really seeing an evolution in the game or are we simply being kept in the dark, blinded by some editing tricks?!

This episode gave us a new angle to the story: The Witches of Macbeth. Let’s have fun with this.

(Who knew that when the bard wrote: “It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing” he was thinking of Probst and Survivor!)

Stephen wants to be the one that kills King Duncan so that makes him Macbeth while Joe is the embattled king. Ciera has been encouraging Stephen to make the move so that would actually give her the role of Lady Macbeth. It was Lady Macbeth who pushed Macbeth to kill the king and she overrode all of her husband’s objections by challenging his manhood and that’s pretty close to what Ciera did when she kept saying that no one was there to play.

While Kimmi and Stephen described Abi, Ciera and Wentworth as the witches, the editors presented their own witches: Tasha, Kelly, and Kimmi herself. These three had been fairly absent from the story in the last few episodes and suddenly they had successive confessionals which appeared vindictive and could even be seen as prophecies.

The other main roles in Shakespeare’s tragedy are Banquo who was Macbeth closest ally at the start of the story, Fleance, his son, and Macduff who kills Macbeth in the end.

Jeremy has been close to our “Macbeth” from the start so he fits the role of Banquo best. Macbeth became worried about Banquo, so he killed him. That suggests Stephen will get rid of Jeremy at some point.

On the island, Spencer has been adopted by Jeremy so that would make him Fleance, Banquo’s kid.

That would mean Wentworth is the only main character left to play the role of Macduff.

In the end, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth died. She kills herself while Macduff kills Macbeth. Is this how it will turn out? Will Ciera make a mistake that will end her game? Pulling the wrong color rock would certainly be her karmic fruit. Tasha’s “prophecy” said that Kelley will have a strong case to present to the jury, so if she confronts Macbeth in the end, she should be our winner. Of course, a simpler approach to all this would be to say that Ciera is really the witch and her prophecy is that Jeremy will win. We wind up with conflicting prophecies…

The Characters

Kimmi:   She came up with the term witch to describe the three girls, but her mean-spirited confessionals seemed to make her the first of our three witches. She didn’t want to see the girls getting friendly with Jeremy or gaining any more power, but they’ve done just that. Her earlier attack on Monica was very similar so that suggests that Kimmi wasn’t willing to work with any of the young women. Her inflexibility will be her downfall.

Tasha: Her story died as soon as she got out of Angkor and now we see her as being vindictive, showing some jealousy when she realised that Wentworth was building a solid case. That is enough to give her a role as one of Macbeth’s witches. Tasha was one of the players shown whenever Ciera said that no one was playing. That passive game play left her out of the loop and could cost her dearly in this game that is moving faster than ever before.

Keith: Just like on the island, there isn’t a role for Keith in the play besides being a foot soldier. As one of Joe’s allies, he could be the next victim if our “king” continues to win immunities. Otherwise, he will be one of those players that simply reach the end of their time in the game and leave uneventfully.

Abi: She certainly was THE witch at the beginning of the story, but her role has vanished since the merge. We could always say that Abi has corrected her “little” mistakes, but it’s mainly that there is no need for her type of drama now that the game has picked up. This latest competition could have been Abi’s shining moment, just like riding China’s dragon was the ideal challenge for Courtney, but it wasn’t meant to be.  Being the final Tribal Council goat is coming back as a possibility for her. It would be a nice pay for her “performance”.

Joe (King Duncan): I was really surprised to see that Kelley was determined to get rid of him, but she told us that he was dead to her so I should have listened. There is no doubt left in my mind that Stephen will succeed in “killing” the king of challenges. Joe never really tried to make his “Ta Keo Final Five” alliance work and that will cost him in the end.

Spencer (Fleance…or Malcolm): After gaining strong momentum, Spencer’s role was greatly reduced in this one. He still remains a strong contender and he could be crowned “king” during the Final Tribal Council. He had very little to contribute to this decision, so he simply went along with Jeremy and Stephen. He is aware that this vote could destroy his game, though, so it will be interesting to see how he manages that mess.

Stephen (Macbeth): We certainly had been told about his determination to make a big move, but his awkward edit had made me doubt that he could pull it off. Now he has gained control of his tribe and I am thrilled with the unexpected result. The guy can’t chop wood or prepare an avocado, but he can certainly make moves! Much like Chaplin in his day, Stephen is making the kooky musical theme work for him. It doesn’t have to be pretty when it comes to Survivor (I’m guessing that many viewers think that Joe is ALWAYS pretty even when he is struggling to keep his balance) and Stephen is making Jeff’s words sound prophetic! He still hasn’t killed his “King Duncan,” though, and he is already causing a lot of carnage. He thinks it will pad his case to the jury, but one has to wonder if his approach to the jury is too theoretical. Booting Kelly is certainly a point on his scorecard, but a juror doesn’t keep score. They are much more practical than that and it’s all about emotions. Like Kelly said, if that is his game, he can have at it. She certainly didn’t sound as if she was impressed by that move.

Ciera (Lady Macbeth): Taking on one of the most difficult roles in theatre, Ciera is pulling it off nicely. She certainly has Stephen’s attention and there will be no turning back for him as long as “King” Joe is around. She challenged Stephen and now he is forced into action. If Joe can win another immunity challenge or two it would certainly help Ciera’s cause. She will have to push Stephen, Jeremy and Spencer to make more and more moves against Joe’s allies until they can finally vote him out. The big question for her is what will happen next. In this game where so many players have eliminated themselves by saying or doing the wrong thing, it isn’t ideal to be associated with a role that ends in suicide. If it comes down to rocks once more, is there any doubt that Ciera pulls the wrong one this time? Even if the game doesn’t come down to rocks, there are many possible outcomes where Ciera can run into trouble because of her own words.

Jeremy (Banquo): Like Shakespeare’s heroes, Jeremy gave us some great soliloquies and the one we heard when he reached the end of the path that led to the idol was great. In it, we heard everything that could be replayed during the reunion after Jeff reads his name on the winning ballot. His win has now been prophesied by Ciera, one of Kimmi’s witches. If Jeremy wins, his path to victory would follow the straightforward outcome of the game because he has been in the center of the main alliance since day one. We can only wonder if he can succeed to Bayon’s destruction. That destruction is really what we have been witnessing since Monica’s departure and Jeremy was the one that said you’d have to be an idiot to go against such a good tribe. Granted, some original TaKeo members have been eliminated since Monica’s exit but they were all players who had shifted allegiance and had become strong allies to the main Bayon players.

Jeremy still has a “Joe” problem and he seems so worried about the men around him that he could be surprised by a woman.   The underdogs have gained power since the merge and, at least for now, they can even count on Jeremy in their voting bloc. The burning question will be: Which side is using the other?   No one will blame the three girls for voting against Kelly and she even said as much in her final words because she expected them to vote against her. Even Spencer could be easily forgiven for that vote, but there will be repercussions to Jeremy’s decision.  He told us that he didn’t want to jump ship too fast, but that is exactly what he did. Was it a mistake?   Unless he can explain himself to the players better than he did when he gave us that last confessional, it certainly can turn into his downfall.

Kelley (Macduff): She has proven that she can be a quiet killer but will she be the one that triumphs in the end? Her edit has always been stellar even during the previous episode where her position in the game became so dire that I had my doubts. Now that we have been told that being on the bottom isn’t fatal and that we have seen her get into a nice position with the main voting bloc, there is a lot less doubt in my mind. Even if the blocs shift and cause as much damages as when tectonic plates move, Kelley has shown more adaptability, more flexibility than anyone else in this game. It started with Varner when he told her that the vote was going to be between her closest allies, Shirin and Spencer. It continued in the new Ta Keo when she made a place for herself by throwing Terry under the bus. The way she reversed her fortunes after the merge has been quite remarkable and the editors have followed her every step of the way. While yesterday we thought that her strong edit could have peaked too early and had been only due to that idol, today we see that there is much more to her game than that.

So, as of today, I see Kelley as our Sole Survivor…but of course, there are still To-morrow, and To-morrow, and To-morrow…

Become a patron of RHAP