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Counterpoint: Why the Frat Pack is on the Right Track

Why Matthew J Quinn and the Frat Pack alliance are on the Right Track

Nobody tell Matt, but somebody thinks he is playing a good game (Photo courtesy of CBS)

This blog is a counterpoint written by Matthew Bok in response to the first entry from our new Survivor: One World Blogger, Richie Glanzer

I’m looking at this as a kind of counter point to Richie’s take on Episode I (which was not in 3-D and there wasn’t a Jar-Jar to be seen) so let me introduce myself, my name Humpty, pronounced with an Umpty (hell if Rob can get all punerific, why can’t I). My name is Matthew Bok and I have watched 26 (yes 26!) seasons of Survivor including two Australian, and one craptacular UK version. I think Russell got screwed and Boston Rob is over-rated. Outside of All-Star seasons I think that returning players are bad and give an unfair advantage (not to mention a disproportionate amount of airtime) to the retreads. I do watch previews so I can guess a few things that weren’t obvious in the first episode.

Why the Frat Pack alliance on Survivor could be in trouble

Click the picture to read Richie Glanzer's Blog: How the Frat Pack is Setting Survivor Back to the Stone Age

Survivor has evolved much over the last 23 seasons. Some of those evolutions were good (hidden immunity idols), some were not so good (Redemption Island), and some flat out sucked (The Medallion of Power™). The beauty of the show is that as the show evolves what is needed to play the game also evolves. This was obvious in Heroes vs. Villains as many returning players were playing season 10 Survivor in season 20 (Rob, Colby, etc.) The addition of the “one world” concept seems so obvious now and I think it will change the overall arc of at least this season.

Richie nailed it when he stated that Survivor is an individual game from day one. Through you are playing as part of a team if you aren’t looking down the road when it becomes an individual game you’ve already lost. The other thing that can kick you in the butt is not knowing your Survivor history. Every time there has been a tribe split at the beginning that was anything other than random (men/women, old/young, race, etc.) there has been a pre-merge swap. The intriguing aspect of the swap is not when/if, but how. Will this be random, or will it be a school yard pick? I could see it either way, but I would wager it will be the pick option, because it shows where people stand in the game and with whom (especially if the pick is done in a public forum).

The frat-boy alliance is indeed not the majority that they think they are, but they are also not the minority that Richie points to. Why? The way I see it there are the four that are together, the four that aren’t, and then Colton. Colton committed the one unforgiveable curse in Survivor, Adava Kadavara. Of course I actually mean that he isolated himself from his tribe. He not only isolated himself from the tribe, but he also associated with the other tribe almost exclusively. This puts him one foot out the door already, but…

He has an immunity idol. He does, but as Richie pointed out, Colton wants to be like Cochran. He wants to make an impact. He wants to be remembered. All of this will be his downfall. Between his desire to be front and center and his needing to make an impact there is no way that Colton’s immunity idol stays hidden for long. Either Colton will confide in someone from the men’s tribe that he has the idol (this will happen) or Sabrina tells someone on her tribe that tells someone on the men’s tribe (this also will happen) the Frat Boys alliance will know about it. They will split seven votes (four to Colton, three to the person that falls to the “next to go status”) and the idol will get flushed the first time the guys go to tribal council.

Colton basically gave up on day one, found some light at the end of the tunnel, but I believe the damage was already done. I’d be shocked if he made the merge, and he has zero chance of winning unless it is a female dominated jury. His game was over the second he sat on the log to sulk rather than help his tribe.

Living together as one is the new twist and one neither side has figured out. There were two instances where this was obvious. 1. The chickens. You can’t say you’ll work together to get the chickens and go back on it a minute later. Even the dumbbells that can’t figure out that four is not a majority of nine know that. 2. The fire. I think the men did the right thing by not just giving fire to the women, but the way they approached it was stupid. As entertaining as a stripper pole on day one might have been, ask any girl on the pole, they don’t care much for the guys handing out dollars (or fire) and a grudge will be held. Any requests for breasts will be remembered on day 39.

As of day three the people who are probably playing the best are the ones that have gotten the littlest airtime. The one world bombshell scattered quite a bit of dust and the wiser people are the ones that are waiting for it to settle rather than fanning the flames. After one episode I don’t think it’s really possible to give many props for a job well done on the women’s tribe, but if I had to it would go to Kim. She is on the right side of the numbers for her tribe, and she has stayed out of the fray. On the guys side it’s really hard to pick a pony until the whole Colton thing plays out.

On the other hand it’s very easy to say who did not do so well in the first episode. Chelsea didn’t win any fans on the guys’ side with the chickens, and the fireworks between Christina and Alicia don’t bode well for either of them. They’ve all dug themselves huge holes, with Christina probably in the worst spot due to her lack of numbers. For the guys Colton is done, it’s just a matter of when.

One thing that wasn’t mentioned in the other summary was the immunity challenge. In my mind the guys did the right thing, no question. If you have a sure victory there is no reason to give it up. In the real world you can afford to be chivalrous. On Survivor, throwing your jacket over the puddle in the road might cost you a million bucks. If the roles were reversed I don’t think there is any chance in hell that the girls would have given up immunity and I wouldn’t have blamed them for taking that stance either.

Let’s Talk Previews:

Colton does something that riles Sabrina, the women are “falling apart” per Probst, and the men have a hidden immunity idol at the fire. The question is which idol is it? I’m guessing that it is not Colton’s and therefore they have to give it to a woman. Since the tribes are located together I’m guessing (if the men collectively can put together enough brain-power) they will give it to the person they think is most likely to get voted off in order to get her to pick off one of the people in the power alliance. My guess is it either goes to Nina or Christina as the odd person out, with Christina actually getting it. She will use it to dump Alicia out of the game in the second bootee slot.

I predict it will be a swap in episode five. At that point the men will have an 8 – 6 advantage, with Courtney, Alicia, Greg, and Christina gone. This gives Colton a shot, but a slim one. Based on the previews he will have enemies on both tribes before any swap. These are just guesses and I have not read any spoilers for the season.

Pick for a winner as of one episode: Bill. I think he’s getting the Tina edit so far.

Rob Cesternino

Rob Cesternino is a two-time Survivor player and reality TV aficionado. Rob gives his thoughts on his favorite Reality TV shows as the host of "Rob Has a Podcast" More From Rob Cesternino »


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  • damnbueno

    Beware the “Next time on Survivor” promos.  They’re almost always misleading.  I remember one preview from Gabon in which there was a shot of an Elephant.  Probst claimed “A visitor invades camp.”  But when next week came 1) The elephant was not in camp, but a short hike away. 2) The elephant was not invading, but calmly eating leaves on the other side of a river.

    I almost never believe what is said in promos, and I’ve never regretted it.

    I’m not sure why you feel both Alicia and Christina will be gone soon.  Whoever wins their episode 1 battle figures to be safe for a few votes — unless they put their foot in their mouth in a different way.

    I don’t think Chelsea has done irreparable damage to her chances.  If she kept her end of the chicken deal, she would have lost all of her female support.  She showed public loyalty to her alliance.  If/when there’s a members switch, she can still strike a new deal with Matt, who now knows she can be counted on to stay loyal…IF Matt lasts that long that is.

  • RichieGlanzer

    I enjoyed your blog Matt, but stopped reading on the preview part. A few things though. You said, ”
    The frat-boy alliance is indeed not the majority that they think they are, but they are also not the minority that Richie points to.”

     Much like Survivor is edited, so are my thoughts. The key to getting someone to read your blog is to make quick thoughtful points, then end it. I see where you think I insinuated where they are the minority, but really what I meant was they are not the majority, and can quickly become the minority.

    I also think you are burying Colton *way* too quickly. Its Day 3. Things change drastically. I remember in Boston Rob’s first season Kathy was all but gone, and she went on to finish 3rd, and clearly would have won had she made it to the final 2. Richard Hatch probably was the least liked person after day 1 as well. I mean the odds say you’re right but I never say this person cant win on Day 3, unless they are eliminated.

    But overall really good job.

    • RichieGlanzer

      (And I stopped reading on the previews bc I don’t read previews, not bc I didn’t like your blog haha)

  • http://twitter.com/SatnaamM Satnaam Mago

    I would say its 1-0 in favor of Richie in the blog wars so far this season…I’ll give you credit Matt, I think the position you had to represent (devil’s advocate to Richie’s blog) was a harder position, but Richie seemed more on point as far as what’s going on to me.

    • RichieGlanzer

      I agree Satnaam! haha j/k Matt.

  • http://twitter.com/mjbok Matthew Bok

    Richie, the reason I’m burying Colton this early is twofold.  Survivor is very much a game played in stages.  You have the beginning, the pre-merge, the post-merge, and the end game.  Each phase requires slightly different strategies while always looking to transition to the next phase.  What Colton has done is completely skip to the post-merge (or swap) phase and he is playing too hard too fast. 

    Regarding editing, the thing I’ve noticed is look at people’s injurires.  In a confessional they will have bruises, cuts, etc. then in the group setting they won’t.  On “day one” some of the confessionals were probably from day three or later.

    The reason I think Chistina and Alicia are both in trouble is from something Courtney said to Rob on his podcast.  She said that she really wanted to “save” Christina, because she was in trouble.  Courtney knew what was going on up to the first challenge, so I’d say Christina is in deep.  Alicia is too much of a wildcard.  I think even her own alliance will cut her because she’s just too explosive.

    The biggest shift I saw this season was there were core alliance formed an hour into the game.  Usually this takes at least a half day (end of the first day last season).  While it might almost be a necessity now, I think it is dumb.  You don’t know anybody, 20 minutes off the truck and historically people have lost the game because they tie their fortunes to the wrong people too early.

    Richie, I thought your blog was great, and I don’t think the Frat Boy alliance is doing great, I just think they are not doomed yet.  The only strong disagreement I had was your assessment of Colton.  Yes, asking for (and getting!) the idol was ballsy.  I think it was out of necessity rather than strategy because he came in with a very specific game plan and no flexibility.  Of course he’ll end up winning and it’ll show how little I know.

    • RichieGlanzer

      Matt, I have just seen too many times (like with Chris in other Battle of Sexes season) where people make runs late. No one remembers what you do the first three days.

      Rob C. I felt worked too hard too his first season, but in the end if he makes it to final 2, he wins. Remember, a lot of the people you betray don’t make the jury early.

      • http://twitter.com/mjbok Matthew Bok

        You’re right (especially about Chris), but right now we’re working with 3 days of stuff.  I think it has more to do with surviving what you do the first three days than actually being punished at the end for what you do.

        Rob’s season is one of a few where the ending was a letdown because of the outcome.  Giving Jenna her due she did win her way to the end, but Rob got her to the final 5.

  • http://survivingsurvivor.com David

    Just a quick note to thank Rob (and Matthew and Richie too) to write these blogs. This is a great idea. (especially because this season, I’m afraid I won’t have much time to listen to many podcasts).
    Keep on writing. :-)

    • RichieGlanzer

      Thanks David. I’m loving it.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/YBNA4GKSH3ZRJHJB6OOSTHQKGA Kim

    Totally agree with the first paragraph – novices only please, no retreads.  Also, I am glad that RI is gone as it takes to much time away from seeing the various personalities develope.

    Regarding the women.  Unless they can find some sort of leadership or focus in their group, they will consistantly lose.  And leading this group may may difficult as Alicia and possibly Kat feel threaten by the other women (anyone remember Penny from the next FNS).  However, evolution and proximity may just find some of the women forming alliances with some of the men before the merge.

    How about the 4 hot(?) “frat” boys teaming up the 4 hottest(?) sorority girls.  Wouldn’t that be interesting?

    • TonyDeCro

      No. It wouldn’t be interesting.

  • Sam Washburn

    In a preview Tarzan was shown with pretty developed facial hair so I’m thinking this theory might be a bit off. also the description of the preview says that a group of misfits find an unlikely leader in this next episode, that coupled with the hint that the girls are “falling apart” makes me believe that actually the guys lose the challenge and that the 5 non frat-boys do come together to follow Colton and Matt gets voted out as Colton has already mentioned hating him. If the women do end up losing then maybe Christina develops a following and Alicia gets voted out but that seems unlikely.

  • robhasatweetfan

    I totally agree with you on the colton thing, but however i did read this after last nights episode so of course some of things said were funny but i think what you said about Colton still holds true

  • Pingback: Mistakes from the Frat Pack on Survivor: One World | RobHasAwebsite.com

  • http://twitter.com/mjbok Matthew Bok

    I have a critique of episode II ready.  If wanted it will get posted.

    • http://twitter.com/JackMarco Jack_Marco

       Post it!

      • http://twitter.com/mjbok Matthew Bok

        Rob has it.  He’s going to put it up this weekend.  I went about 50/50 on the predictions for the first week.  My main prediction going into next week is that the men will do the stupidest thing ever next week…if not the week after.

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