I felt like starting a series about my reactions to Survivor Philippines. Hopefully I can get each post done by the day after each episode. I have a bad feeling later on it'll be difficult to stick with that guideline but I'll try me best. And hopefully after this I never forget how to spell Philippines lol.
First of all shoutout to IAmNothing712 a.k.a. Ivan Kevin Sevilla. It must be exciting for arguably the biggest survivor fan in the Philippines for Survivor to finally visit the Philippines. Wouldn't it just be icing on the cake if your favorite player from this cast won?
Alright so first I'll start with some general stuff, then I'll get into specific contestants and then I'll go from there.
3 tribes. I starting watching Survivor with season 19, Samoa, (which gives me an even bigger hatred of Russell Hantz) and I read about the previous seasons later on so this will be the first season I watch with 3 starting tribes. I'm totally ok with that by I hope for two things: That this means there is no possibility of a repeat of the merge of Redemption Island and South Pacific, probably the least interesting merges IMO since Samoa. What made them uninteresting for the most part is that you were voted off basically for being on a certain tribe and later on for being at the bottom of an alliance, which is great for the people on top which means we've been getting some skilled players lately, but you kinda go throughout the episode having a 90% positive feeling that this certain person was gonna go. One World it was an improvement. The boys still got systematically voted off but it was more interesting because it wasn't like at the start of the merge there were 3 people that seemed destined to make the final 3 and up until the final 4 nothing was for certain. I'm also hoping that there's something between the start of the game and the merge like a tribe gets dissolved because it would be interesting to see how it would change the game.
Superstars. Well more or less. You've got the returning players Jonathan, Mike, and Russell, Facts of Life star Lisa, Former MLB player Jeff, someone who survived stage 4 cancer, Artis, atleast a couple Pageant Girls if not still attractive girls, a military person, Roxanne, and a therapist Denise (they don't get mcuh credit but I bet they put up with a lot). All the other people I didn't mention have their own things that make them cool as well so initially I don't think any of them will be dissapointing.
Nervous. On two occassions this episode has the contestants entering the water and then they freak us out by showing sharks that I assume are not far away. And this season's theme brings back 3 previously injured players. Anyone else seeing something wrong with that?
3 different returnees, 3 different situations. You have Mike who seems to be in the most comfortable position out of the 3 returning players within his tribe. You have Russell who is respected but not completely trusted and in a way he's somewhat in danger, similar to early game Coach and later game Ozzy in South Pacific. And then you have Jonathan. If I had to bet on most likely to get voted off soon out of the 3 returners not taking into account how the results of the immunity challenges will play a part, it would be Jonathan. Everyone on that tribe seems to not be on his side. A lot can change though, especially if Kalabaw does well in challenges and if he finds the idol.
1.5 hour episode. Thank you people in charge of that! Bonus!
Alright so now for the individual analyses of players:
Abi-Maria: Not every season you have a Brazilian in Survivor. Yeah she's definitely hot and she seems like the type of player that Brandon thought Mikayla was in South Pacific. She kinda went overboard with the flirting but no one seems to mind. Shocker.
Dana: Like Colton she is on paper an outsider due to being a lesbian (I DO NOT HAVE A PROBLEM WITH HOMOSEXUALS) but I think she'll do better than Colton mainly because she doesn't seem like a mean person (like how Colton was). I think it would be cool to see Jeff and Dana be in an alliance.
Denise: She seems like she'll be an interesting yet underrated player. Despite not proving to be a challenge powerhouse, good for her not to get any votes straight away. We'll see if Denise will continue to grow.
Jeff: I'm not the biggest baseball fan but he'll be an interesting addition to this pretty cool cast. Even though he is or was a famous athlete, at least he's not top priority right now for his tribe to vote someone off. Hopefully his early injury proves not to be a big problem.
Jonathan: He was a character in the past, he certainly will be one now but he doesn't look like a likely winner at the moment. Like I said things could change but it'll take a lot of change for Penner to get into a more favorable position.
Katie: She started the whole "target Jonathan" campaign which is an easy one to buy into, especially if you know what Jonathan is capable of. But what she manages to do next will decide if she will be a big candidate to win this game. She's pretty hot.
Lisa: Someone with as much hype built around her usually doesn't seem like a soon-to-be early out (Russell Hantz in RI was an exception) but she's got no game right now. The only person she's connected with is Mike Skupin but he's still very likely gonna vote her out. Lisa better hope her tribe wins a lot because otherwise she's gonna go soon.
Malcolm: If anyone is gonna be this season's villain, right now I think it's him or Abi-Maria. However he's been playing a pretty respectable game and I think I'd do some of the same things although I'm not in the same shape as him (I'm average; not Homer Simpson but not Superman). A player like Malcolm will need to be that strategic because he could be an easy target post merge.
Michael: He seems like a great guy and from this episode I feel like it's even more of a shame that he was evacuated in Australia. Despite doing a better job than Jonathan or Russell so far, his game is not perfect. Getting injured often like a Total Drama character could get him into trouble and even though he's in the majority 4 of his alliance, I have a feeling he's the 4th man.
RC: She's definitely got both looks and brains, two very helpful assets in Survivor. RC sees to be the de facto leader of the tribe, or at least her alliance. She hasn't been the biggest personality of the season just yet, but neither was Kim Spradlin and she eventually won. Same goes for Sophie Clarke. The past 2 seasons two intelligent, strong girls have won and RC fits that description.
Roxanne: And so does Roxanne although she hasn't been seen doing as much strategy as RC. I liked how when she mentioned that she came from a background where she always accepted orders to her superiors, which made Russell even more upset about the way he's acted recently. That might give Russell a wake up call. Roxanne seems like a very likeable person and I hope she does well.
Russell: The main thing about Russell was that he said he wasn't going to act a certain way (such as the leader) but he does it anyway. It's like saying I'm no longer into Pokemon but I still talk to my friends about the upcoming Black 2 and White 2 versions. Russell is definitely a nice guy and has the ability to win or at least get deep into a game, but a few crucial mistakes almost blew his 2nd chance at Survivor. Right now Russell isn't necessarily hated but also not well liked by his tribemates. If Russell can continue to contribute but let others contribute as well, he's back in this game. Otherwise he's gonna be voted off next unless someone else turns out to be a bigger liability.
Zane: This guy reminds me of Phillip, of Tarzan, and of Cochran. He is not necessarily normal but that doesn't mean I don't like the guy. He's funny and nice but also played hard. Unfortunately some of his tactics are ones that are either totally against common sense or ones that almost always backfire. Making alliances with everyone isn't a strategy I like but with Zane I had a feeling he'd get along with everyone anyway so if not formal alliances they would be "assumed alliances" (anyone who has been watching Survivor knows what I mean). Also, if only he thought that if he kept his mouth shut Russell would've been voted off. Zane thought he was making a bright move by asking his tribe to vote him off (Ozzy did the same thing and it worked out) but I guess he forgot about Redemption Island not being in play or something because that was a crazy and dumb move. It seemed like it might've just worked out but the same happened to Erik in Micronesia. Erik after 9 seasons is still in some people's eyes the dumbest castaway in Survivor history and Zane will likely be criticized for that too. So basically Zane has himself to blame for being voted off, and guessing by his reaction when he left the Tribal Council area, he probably knew it too.
The rest: I hope Russell listened to Angie when she said that he shouldn't have put her to do a puzzle just because Russell was bad at puzzles because she's bad at puzzles too! I mean, hello? Being bad at something is not the same as being the worst. Artis seemed like he would be a strong player this season before the start of the season but now he's on the outs with Lisa. At least Artis seems like he'll last longer than Lisa but hopefully Artis can be more interesting next episode. Carter was a neutral player. He seemed like a nice guy and he did well in the challenge. From what I know about his background, he seems like he could be a good player, but so far he hasn't been focused on too much. Dawson was probably the least focused on person of the episode, at least in my opinion. Looks like she took after Cochran and preferred to be called by her last name. Hopefully I can say more about her next episode. Peter doesn't seem to mind aligning with Abi-Maria and RC (they're both easy on the eyes) but he doesn't seem to be doing much thinking which can make things difficult for him later on.
MVP: I think RC was the MVP in my opinion for making the most solid alliance of the game so far. Honorable mentions: Mike, Malcolm, Dana, Katie.
My favorites: Call me a sellout or mainstream or a badnwagoner or whatever but I would like all 3 returning players: Jonathan, Mike, and Russell to do well. It would be asking a lot for a specific 3 people with 17 in contention of winning to be the final 3 but the least you can say about that possibility is it would be an interesting scenario. There's a lot of haters that hate it when returning players, you know, return, but in my opinion it's ok because they're not given any specific advantage and if they do have advantages their disadvantages outweight them. These players aren't Rob, Russell, Coach, or Ozzy. They may have been good players in their previous seasons but they're not that good. In fact none of them right now seem like the most likely winners. Others that I especially like are Roxanne, Malcolm, RC, and even though they didn't have much attention this episode Artis and Carter. I'm not the biggest fan of Pete, Abi-Maria, Dawson, Angie, or Lisa. Zane was a funny and great guy but I didn't see him as someone I really thought could or wanted to win.
What might happen next: Dana and Jonathan will likely have some sort of confrontation and Lisa is pissed off and worried for being an outsider. Not really sure if she will do anything to change that.
In danger: Russell has to clean up his act or he's going if Matsing lose. On Tandang Lisa's the obvious choice. On Kalabaw Jonathan looks like he's in real trouble and he'll be in even more if he can't find the idol.
Parting statement: I have a really good feeling about this season. I think a lot people will be standouts this season. I look forward to next week's episode.
Questions: Any favorite or least favorite contestants? Favorite tribe? Tribe you think will do the best? Will Jonathan and/or Russell find an idol?