Survivor: Cambodia

Survivor: The Thing

So welcome back. We are fully into the meat of this season. We have two jury members already and we are headed towards the 4th quarter of the season. With so many skilled players left in the game and everybody knowing that the other players are just as skilled and cutthroat as themselves, the level of paranoia must be through the roof right now. It got me thinking, because right now at my work (I work at a non-profit youth residential treatment center), we have a stomach virus that is wiping out both the girls’ and boys’ dorm. I’m the person that is always afraid of getting sick– I get real anxiety around it to the point that I start acting like Kurt Russell in The Thing, where I think that everybody is already infected with the “virus”.

Plus, it gives me the opportunity to rock an eye patch and grow a full beard, which I feel is a much underrated look. Thinking about this metaphor for work, I started to think about how the movie is a good metaphor for Survivor. I mean, the movie is about a group of people in a remote location, away from anything, where one by one they are getting picked off. They have to and want to trust some of the others, but at any time another person might not be who they say they are and at any point you could be killed. You really can’t trust anybody, which is where we are headed this season of Survivor. You have people that you think are on your side, but really anybody can turn on anybody at a drop of a dime. Look at last episode. I had no idea that Savage was even on the table as an option to be going home. The whole episode seemed like it was geared towards Stephen getting the boot, but then bam– hidden immunity idol and bye-bye Savage.

The ugly truth for the players is that deep down they know they can’t really trust a single person playing the game. The person they trust the most could be “The Thing” and infect other people to take them out of the game. When you feel paranoid, it can cause you to act irrationally and/or it can create a scenario where you make a panicked move. It doesn’t take a lot to plant any seed of doubt into any of these players’ minds at this point in the game. What separates the very good and just the good players in this game are the ones that can stay poised and not let their paranoia force them into a short-term move that will jeopardize their long-term future. If you agree with me here, then you have to think the players in the best position right now are Spencer, Jeremy, and Ciera (Let me explain this one in a minute).

Spencer seems the most poised mentally in the game where he has a good sense of who is where in the game and whom he can trust in the moment. Spencer seems like he went from being a huge target everybody wanted out to the point that everybody then kind of left him for dead without finishing him off. I feel that he is the safest bet to not make any rash moves.

Jeremy has the biggest insurance policy in the game right now with his idol. Having that idol gives him the peace of mind to not go to that dark, crazy place we have seen Jeremy go into in the past. Even with that said, you could still see Jeremy being the overzealous guy that wants to shoot anything that looks suspicious. I can see Jeremy turning on his own alliance like De Niro in Goodfellas:

Ciera: She is like “The Thing”, the person that is trying to infect everybody else. She has been playing a very nefarious, conniving game…which has been fun to watch. I like the way Ciera is playing and each week she stays in the game, the stronger she is looking. Do I think she is going to win the game? No, but I do see her being one of the more poised and in-control players in the game. I think she can have more of an effect on the game than players who are in better positions in the game than she’s in. I just like her resolve and her openness with how she is playing this season.

So, those are the players I feel will handle the pressure of the game the best from this point tonight. The problem is that there are still a lot of people in this game and paranoia is going to run deep. It could be one of the players that we don’t see having a chance to win the game like a Kelly Wig or a Tasha, who alter the game with their own paranoid moves. It’s tough to know what will happen. We don’t know who truly is the “The Thing”…The one that can spread and infect and wipe everybody out. This game is wide-open. Let’s see how it plays out tonight.

It’s 8 pm, Portland, Oregon time.

8 pm

Previously on Survivor: Props again to Kelley Went for grabbing the idol way back when because it really altered the game by getting rid of a pretty good player in Savage. Does this put another idol in play now? Hiding the idol during a challenge is one of the better gimmicks the producers have come up with in some time.


We join everybody post-Tribal Council. Everybody seems to be impressed with Kelley Went with the idol play.

Shortly after Kimmi calls out Kelley, Ciera, and Abi as the “Three Witches”…which I honestly was going to make that reference to Macbeth , just for the record…. she points out that one of those three has to go.

Stephen gets the “three witches” metaphor but somehow compares himself to the king in that equation, when in reality Stephen is a character from that famous Shakespeare story Lucas:

It’s like he wants to play the game so bad, but nobody is really wanting to play with him.


Keith, Stephen, and Jeremy talk at the beach about how Kelley found the idol. Jeremy tells us that he wants to get the other idol. Don’t get greedy, Jeremy.

This leads to everybody searching for the idol. Joe knows that his Survivor life is in critical condition without some sort of immunity.


Abi c*ck blocks Joe from finding the idol. She runs and tells Kelley that Joe was actually trying to find an idol and they laugh like it’s the silliest thing ever. Crazy Joe acting all crazy trying to find an idol that will single-handedly  save his Survivor life.


Commercial Break:

So as a part-Italian male and someone that boxed for seven years, I’m really anxious about the new movie Creed:

I mean, the Rocky series was right in my wheelhouse; Sly Stallone in the 80’s was as big as it gets. I guess in this case, at least, Stallone isn’t trying to fight again like he did in the last Rocky movie from 7 years ago that we will all pretend never existed. Stallone was like 73 years old at that time. Did he really need to force another Rocky movie down our throats?  The sad part is that I’ve already kind of talked myself into this movie…Apollo Creed’s son…as a boxer??? Plus, the death of Apollo in Rocky IV (spoiler alert) was the second most traumatic death in my childhood, only trailing Goose’s death in Top Gun. It only seems right for Apollo to have a son that can bring honor back to the Creed name. Yeah, I’m all in on this movie.


Back from commercial and it’s time for the reward challenge. The weather is looking pretty ugly out there with the rain and mud.

The winning team wins a trip to the “Survivor Spa”. Winners get a shower, a massage and “spa food”, whatever the hell that is. I’ve never heard of “spa food” before.


The challenge is kind of a cool comp, where there is a maze, and post building and puzzles that I’m sure you saw for yourself, and I will do a poor job trying to explain here…You get it…I get it….We all get it.


This competition was an absolute massacre. The team of Spencer, Ciera, Joe, Tasha and Stephen win the big spa day prize.

Jeremy takes us to commercial lamenting how bad of a day this has been. Is this foreshadowing that Jeremy is going to go tonight. Am I paranoid? What are you looking at?


Commercial Break:

Okay, does anybody else remember the Planet Hollywood restaurants??? You should really watch that whole hour-long video I posted here. I mean, the unintentional comedy is through the roof here. The sad part is that I was so into Planet Hollywood when I was a kid. Really, it was such a highlight to go when I did have the few chances to go…until I realized the food taste like sh*t.  Watching that video, it’s really funny how “all-in” all the biggest celebrities’ were on this. If you were a celebrity, did you immediately get stock options in this business?  Can you imagine this happening in today’s world?  It’s really tough for me to imagine Leonardo DiCaprio taking a break from his three or four model-a-day diet to front a Planet Hollywood restaurant. I do miss the late 80’s/early 90’s, though…What a great time. I really do need to go back and watch that whole Planet Hollywood video again…There is some gold in there!


Back from commercial, we join the victors at their spa reward.


Ciera breaks the ice with the game talk. Ciera makes her pitch and she is openly targeting Jeremy. Wow! Pretty big talk here. For some reason they talk about Kelly Wig being a threat, too….Um.. Am I missing something? At any point this season have you thought to yourself: “Man, that Kelly Wig is really playing a strong game”?


Back at camp, Jeremy is not fooling around. He must sense some danger around him, as he hunts for the idol or idol clues.

The producers aren’t fooling around either as ten seconds later Jeremy finds the idol clue. Maybe this is Jeremy’s season, as everything seems to be aces for him so far.


Jeremy needs to find the idol at night, but for some reason it’s stay-up campfire night and Jeremy is getting annoyed that he can’t find his opening or that everybody is staying up.

Finally, Jeremy basically tells everybody that he has diarrhea and he heads off to find the idol.


Okay, now Jeremy has two idols. Wow, he is really in a good place now. He can basically Whip and Nae Nae his way into the finals.

How fun would it be to play Survivor with two Hidden Immunity Idols?


Jeremy gives us a little emotion as he explains how important it is for him to win the game for his wife Val, who flamed out (I think in the first episode) when she played the game.


Commercial Break:

We’re at the halfway point of the show and I have no idea who is most likely to go home tonight…not a clue. Is all that has happened tonight just a mirage for the fact that one of three “witches” is just going to go home with a 8-1 vote? Is Joe the target? Is everybody just going to say: “Screw it; let’s vote Stephen out”? I think Stephen should go rogue and pick a fight with somebody out of nowhere. Wouldn’t it really shake the game up, if out of nowhere Stephen walked up to Keith, didn’t say anything and then cold-clocked him? I feel like that would send a message that Stephen is here to stay and not to mess with him….Granted, it’s a little extreme, but I feel like Stephen needs to do something a little extreme, no?


Wow! Speak of the devil– Stephen brings us back from commercial, talking about his uneasiness with Joe and Kelly Wig being very close. Stephen again tells us that he wants to make a big move. He tells us that he is going to join the three girls.


Stephen joins the three girls to tell them that he joining forces with them. Again, for some reason they name Kelly Wig as a “big threat”. What the hell am I missing???????

Good for Stephen, though. Seriously, he was in a weak position in the game and he is trying to distinguish himself by taking a big risk. Good for him. It could be very risky but he might as well go for it.


Time for the Immunity Challenge. This week we are going with a competition that centers around balancing yourself on the water.

Nothing like Jeff Probst throwing life metaphors out one after the other while everybody annoyingly looks on pretending not to hear him.


Hold everything. Jeff offers an advantage in the game to the first person who jumps in and touches their buoy. Spencer and Stephen go for it. Stephen does his best Michael Phelps impression and wins! He wins the unknown advantage in the game.


Everybody starts dropping like flies. It comes down to Joe, Kelly Wig and Abi. Is Joe going to pull this off again and win another Immunity Challenge?


Jeff makes the final 3 stand on one foot. It comes down to Joe and Abi.


After quite the battle, Abi falls and Joe wins immunity for the 3rd time. I guess at this point there is no way he doesn’t go the first time he doesn’t win one of these competitions. I mean, it feels like somebody might pull a Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan on Joe before the next Immunity Challenge:


Commercial Break:

How nervous are we all about this sucking?

I hope it doesn’t suck, but if history has shown us anything it’s that when people try to recreate comedies that were perfect for that specific time and place, they usually hurt us all. I’m looking right at you and Ghostbusters 2 and Dumb and Dumber (the one that came out last year)….I’m not exactly optimistic about this one…


Back from commercial and it’s time to scramble! Who is getting 86’d from the club?

Kimmi is really pushing to get rid of one of the three girls. It looks like Kelley Went is the target they want to go home.


Stephen finds out his advantage in the game is to steal somebody’s vote. He gets to stop someone from voting and then he gets to vote in their place, which is actually a pretty good advantage to have.

Is Stephen going to waste that move on saving Kelley Went, though? I know it’s a big move but is it in his best interests to make that move now?


Stephen tries to sell his plan to Spencer and Jeremy, but they look at Stephen like he just asked them to invest their money into Myspace stock.


It seems the plan is to stick to the orginal idea of getting one of the witches out.


We go to Tribal Council. Savage comes out looking like a 14-year-old snowboarder who’s on vacation with his parents and he’s trying to fit into the “island vibes”.


Once again, Kelley and Ciera lead the discussions here. It’s tough to read where people are headed. So far, it seems like everybody is keeping their poker face. I have no clue what’s going to happen.


Jeff tells us it’s time to vote. So far, nothing has happened as far as Stephen using his advantage…good move.


We go to the votes:










Fourth member of your jury: Kelly Wig….What happened here? I am so confused. Somebody please explain to me what happened here.


Okay, first off, I am not a Kelly Wig hater. I was happy to see her back. I don’t think she was playing an awful game or anything. I just didn’t see anything that made her stick out like a threat in this game that justified this move. What am I missing? Yes, she was close with Joe, but really couldn’t they have gotten her out at any time they wanted? Like wouldn’t Stephen want to get Spencer out instead of Kelly Wig? I guess I’m just not understanding when the focus got shifted on to her.

Regardless, what’s done is done. Another really good episode in a season that has been filled with really strong episodes. Obviously, at this point Jeremy is the number one seed and it’s tough to see him not making it to finals. In fact, Jeremy is a humongous favorite now to win this game. If I told you to bet your money on either Jeremy or the field, would you honestly bet against Jeremy at this point? Jeremy is “The Thing” and it may be too late to stop him from wiping out everybody. Props to Kelley Went and Ciera for hanging tough for the third week in a row…People are going to regret keeping them in the game if they don’t take them out soon.

Thanks for reading, let me know who you think are the top three right now. My top three power ranking players:

  1. Jeremy
  2. Spencer
  3. Ciera
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