October 6, 2012

Survivor: Philippines, "This Isn't a 'We' Game"

It’s common on Survivor for one tribe to start slowly and lose multiple challenges early in the game. In a two-tribe contest, removing a few weaker players usually changes the momentum. The teams usually have eight or more members, so there are more opportunities to rebound. In a three-tribe format, it’s really difficult to stop the decline once the train starts rolling off the cliff. Matsing only has two good athletes who can effectively compete in the running and swimming challenges. Russell is a strong guy, but he doesn’t have the endurance or agility to make a difference. Denise and Malcolm try their best to carry Matsing to victory, but they fall short once again this week. They haven’t reached Ulong levels of ineptitude from the Palau season, but they’re inching closer to that level. Even a second-place finish would be a grand achievement at this point. It comes down to Angie or Russell this week, and her connection with Malcolm isn’t enough to save her from an early exit. For more details, check out my full review for the fine folks at Sound on Sight.

Here are some other interesting points that I didn't address in my review:

  • Matsing's ineptitude goes beyond their bad performance in challenges. At camp, they also misjudged the tide levels and lost their raft. If these difficulties continue, production may have to step in and save the day.
  • Pete acts like he's the ringleader who's calling the shots, but he lucked out because Abi-Maria isn't a good player. She's too volatile to be a valuable ally, so he needs to hope Artis is on his side to make it work.
  • The only tribe that hasn't found the immunity idol is Matsing, and Russell doesn't seem that concerned with looking for it. It's possible the editors aren't showing his searches, but he seems pretty resigned to his place in the game.
  • Jeff Kent makes a point that his four-fingered shake wasn't a "manly" shake, which just adds to the silliness. There's nothing wrong on Survivor with making fake promises, but trying to justify it with a goofy handshake is ridiculous.

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