Maybe I have ice water flowing through my veins. Maybe my heart is a few sizes too small. Maybe I’m a cruel exception. But I didn’t have an ounce of sympathy for Abi-Maria during last night’s episode of Survivor, and I have a feeling that most of you probably feel the same way. She got a taste of her own medicine, and it wasn’t nearly enough if you ask me. She subjected her tribemates to twenty-something days of misery, but she couldn’t even take twenty minutes of it herself.
Let’s start from the top. Before we even got to any challenges, Lisa had a nice sit-down with Abi and broke up with her. Yep, she gave her the old heave-ho. All that was missing was a tear-stained dinner menu and a weak “Can we still be friends?” Leave it to Lisa to officially terminate an alliance rather than just moving on with her vote. And the thing is, I think Lisa was the one who was really hurt here. The other alliance doesn’t really need her anymore, you had to wonder if it was a case of ‘too little, too late’.
The Reward Challenge this week was a bit boring – two at a time, tribe members would run around flipping over large drums, until someone had all three face up and the other didn’t. It was a bit hard to follow and not that exciting to watch, but I did laugh when Abi completely screwed up her round. Of course she had no idea what was going on. She’s only participated in a few challenges!
Malcolm, Carter, Pete and Abi won, which was disappointing. The reward was fantastic – a spa day, complete with a bath, massage, mani/pedi and a delicious feast. Abi didn’t deserve all that – all she deserves is a poke in the eye!
Personally, I would have preferred to bathe and get pampered before eating – doesn’t reward food always make people sick? I would want to enjoy my bath without worrying about it getting cut short for an unfortunate bathroom break. I mean, really. That would be a concern, right?
Braggers Never Prosper
The reward itself wasn’t that interesting since the players seemed to check strategy at the door and just relax. The real drama came when everyone returned to camp. Abi seemed to drone on incessantly about the experience – the view, the food, the pampering, everything. Did you know she felt like a princess, you guys? Probably, because she mentioned it six time.
Later, in Tribal Council, this kind of behavior from Abi was blamed on cultural differences and missing social cues. But that’s not fair. She missed the social cues because she is a self-involved twat. When Carter was asked about his favorite part of the reward, Abi interrupted him to talk more about what SHE liked! So rude! I wanted to know more about that spicy sauce that Carter had enjoyed. Poor Carter. That was like, his sixth line this season, and Abi cut him off.
Following that performance, Abi then went on to loudly announce that she would no longer be cooking. But, of course, she still demanded to be fed. Who does this? Why does she lack even an iota of social skills? It’s really unbelievable, she managed to be the only person in the game who had no chance of winning. Who would vote for her? That rant secured her fate. It doesn’t matter how far she gets (in fact, it’s looking more and more desirable to take her to the end), Abi won’t win. I’d be shocked if she received a vote from anyone other than Artis.
With Abi and Pete’s fates all but sealed, some people started to look at what would happen to the likable six once the King and Queen of Jerks were eliminated. Malcolm proposed that he, Denise, Skupin and Lisa would make a good final four. I was surprised by this – coming from Kalabaw, you’d think Malcolm would have more trust in Penner and Carter and would want to stick with them.
Lisa, however, preferred to make a final four pact with Penner – something that I think was a purely emotional decision, but perhaps is because Lisa wants to sit next to two* returning players.
*I don’t think anyone in this season has clued into the fact that it very well could be a final two. There are now four jury members – RC, Jeff Kent, Artis and Pete. Seven players remain in the game. A final three would mean an eight person jury, which I suppose is fine because a final three always means the chance for a tie. But in the past the juries have been made up of nine people, which implies that we’ll see a final two this year. Yay! Final two is much more exciting.
So Lisa went to Penner with that offer, and he turned her down. Kind of. He said it was too soon to make that kind of decision, which is kind of like the guy you’re dating saying it’s too soon to be exclusive. It never ends well, and I think this was a mistake on Penner’s part. Sure, it is better to wait. I agree with him there. If word gets out that two people are on the bottom of the alliance before Abi and Pete are eliminated, they could flip and things could get messy. But in refusing that deal, Penner ticked Lisa off and she and Skupin went and committed to Malcolm. Who knows if it’ll stick, but if it does I think Penner will regret not simply telling Lisa he was in.
I think I’ve previously expressed my displeasure with challenges that have heats. Qualifying a few people at a time isn’t as exciting as letting everyone participate the whole way through because it eliminates the chance for a major come-from-behind victory. So I wish this challenge had worked differently.
Players had to maneuver a buoy on a rope through a series of obstacles. First, five people advanced – unsurprisingly, they were Malcolm, Penner, Denise, Skupin and Carter. Thanks for comin’ out, Abi! Better luck next time…
Next, three advanced – Skupin, Carter and Denise. I would’ve rather been able to see all five take part in the final leg of the challenge, which was in the water. It was a tight one – for a while it was anyone’s game, and Skupin and Carter really went back and forth. Eventually Carter took it. This wasn’t as suspenseful of a challenge because we knew only Pete and Abi were in danger of going home. Had Pete won, well that would have been an interesting wrinkle to see everyone have to deal with.
It was an easy enough decision – Abi had the idol, so the alliance of six would split their votes. Three for Abi, three for Pete. But splitting votes means it only takes one person to flip and change everything, and obviously Pete wasn’t going to go down without a fight. He smartly targeted Malcolm, a physical, social and strategic threat.
The mistake was approaching everyone rather than making a targeted pitch. Pete and Abi asked Carter to vote Malcolm. Then they asked Lisa. They asked Penner. And they asked Skupin. Only Skupin seemed to really consider it, and the others were all mistakes. That meant that Malcolm knew his name was being thrown around, and he knew there was a good chance he’d have to play his Idol at Tribal Council. Had Pete only approached Skupin with the plan, perhaps it would have been more under the radar.
Personally, I think the whole alliance should have voted Pete. There was no way Abi wouldn’t play her Idol this week, so why not give yourselves a safety net by voting for Pete? That way he’d be guaranteed to go home and the Idol would be flushed. Yes, there was a small chance Abi would not play the Idol, and in that case they wanted her voted out. But it felt 99% likely that she’d play it.
Two things were important here, I thought.
- Skupin had to be assigned to vote for Pete for the flip to even work
- If Malcolm were assigned to vote Abi, he could switch and vote for Pete – that would ensure his safety without having to use the Idol
What’s Portuguese for “You’re the worst”?
Tribal Council was rough on Abi, but I actually think she deserved worse. She has been dishing it out for almost four weeks, there is no reason to have sympathy for her. It’s not cultural, she’s just delusional and selfish. If she were a man, Jeff Probst would not have been so sympathetic. If Abi didn’t know that people didn’t like her, it is because she has a serious lack of self-awareness and could probably benefit from some therapy. Hopefully she’ll see the show and understand what a horrible person she has been. Just because she shed a few tears is no reason to excuse her past behavior.
Abi did play her Idol, and Malcolm did not play his. Skupin stayed true to his word, and Pete was voted out. Mwahaha, it is only a matter of time before the final member of the Awful Alliance is voted out!
Once the votes were revealed, we saw that Skupin voted Abi and Malcolm voted Pete. That meant neither of them had a chance to deviate from the plan – I wonder if that was orchestrated on purpose? It would not surprise me if Penner was the one who told people how to vote, knowing who may stray from the plan. It would have been a really dumb move for Skupin to flip anyway. Voting out Malcolm would only alienate him from an alliance that would remain in the majority. But next week? Next week could be madness.
Now that Abi is the only person from her alliance left, and without an Idol, and disliked by most, she is a very desirable person to sit next to in the end. But getting her there would piss off a lot of people. Will anyone try it? I’m not sure, but I can’t wait to see what happens now that the six have to begin turning on one another.
Head to the comments and tell me what you thought of this week’s show!