Survivor Review: What's the Plan?

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If I make the wrong decision, 32 days of hard work could be gone, just like that.

Boston Rob uttered the above quote shortly before going to tribal council on this week’s episode. After Andrea was sent home, the question is ‘Did Boston Rob make the right decision’?

Murlonio Reads Tree Mail

The decision referred to sending Natalie to Redemption Island over Phillip. Although Andrea seemed to be the easy choice early after the immunity challenge, Phillip did his best to make sure he was not in anyone’s good graces. 

Chief Phillip ran around scolding the tribe, mouthing off and plain acting like an idiot.

In his mind and perhaps to his credit, he’s playing the game he stumbled back in to early in the season. He insists he’s playing the crazy guy so that he’s guaranteed a spot in the finals. Phillip’s even confident enough to think that he can beat Boston Rob with the jury.

As crazy as that may sound, without saying as much to Boston Rob, Phillip got the Robfather second guessing himself.  That’s something that hasn’t happened all season and certainly no one would have guessed Phillip would be the one to do it.

Let’s assume for a second that Phillip’s in complete control of what he’s doing and everything is a calculated effort to get himself to the finals again Boston Rob (or anyone really).  Would a jury buy Phillip’s villain act and award him the one million dollars?  Against Boston Rob?  No.  Against someone else?  Maybe.

Boston Rob made the right decision, but did the rest of the tribe?  Grant appeared shocked when Rob suggested getting rid of Phillip, but perhaps it’s a move Grant needs to make.  Or a move Natalie needs to make.  Or Ashley. 

On one hand, getting rid of Andrea prevents her or Matt from playing together.  If Matt gets back in to the game, it’ll be hard for him to avoid being quickly sent to the jury without an obvious candidate to go to for leverage.  Similarly, Andrea now can’t get an ally in Matt if he had come back to build momentum herself.

On the other hand, for Grant, Ashley and Natalie, they need to get rid of Phillip and Boston Rob and they only have two votes to do it.  By burning a vote on Andrea, the margin for error is much thinner.  If Boston Rob or Phillip wins immunity at the wrong time, you’re stuck with them in the finals.

Sitting in the Tent

Phillip has done a lot of nutty things this season.  He’s been annoying and often painful to watch.  But, give him credit, he’s got a plan.  Whether flawed or not, being the irritant is how he thinks he can get to the finals. 

What’s Grant’s plan?  What’s Natalie’s plan?  What’s Ashley’s plan?  They really think they can win going up against Boston Rob in the finals?  Couldn’t Phillip go to the finals and say that at least he played the game?  Maybe he bothered everyone, but it worked.  What did those three do other than ride Boston Rob’s coattails? 

The other major part of this episode was the family or loved one’s part, also known as a half hour of my life that I’ll never get back.  At least the episode had so much to get to that we were not subject to much interaction with the loved ones.  One segment and back to the game. 

Maybe I don’t have a soul, but season-in and season-out I simply do not care about the loved ones.  Listening to Boston Rob describe his game plan to his disinterested and ignorant television is not entertaining.  Beyond those loose conversations, the game completely stops when the loved ones are around.

Rob Gets a Message

Lastly, the multi-person duels, or trials, continue to under whelm.  What’s interesting about three people staying alive and one person (who basically gave up this week, thanks for coming, Steve) going home?  There’s not too much drama there.  I wasn’t a fan of the original format of the duels, but at least there was more on the line.

More from this episode:

  • With the way the trial ended, I understand why the loved ones for those sent to Redemption Island were put in play, but otherwise those who are voted out shouldn’t get any advantages or comforts that those not voted out get.
  • I believe Mike when he says that he didn’t give up time with his mother so that the most people could have time with their loved ones for strategic reasons.  However, I think that subconsciously it impacted his decision.  Ralph being angry with that decision was stupid.  Get over yourself.
  • Awesome challenge this week.  I wish we could have more challenges that are so…challenging.  Of course, they favor physicality, so they can’t run one like that every week.
  • Jeff is unabashedly egging Phillip on to say ridiculous things about his Federal Agent training or his great grandfather. 


Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.4 / 5.0 (10 Votes)

NOT ANDREA, why did Rob have to have her voted out???? The only girl I could stand in this season!!!!!
This episode had quite possibly the worst product placement that I have ever seen in a TV show with that phone, Jeff even mentioned it. So stupid, I don`t care how much money they give you, your show should never be compromised like that.
Also, I wonder what the rest of the tribe thinks every time Jeff asks if anyone wants to play the immunity idol. They have to know that someone has it.
Funniest part of the episode was when Jeff randomly yelled "Rob is carrying his family on his back." It was so random, also Jeff repeatedly calling Rob, Mariano.


It seems Rob has a strategy that hasn't been shown by the editors. It seems obvious that Grant should have been given the boot since he could very easily win the rest of the challenges. But Rob is probably thinking he needs Grant if Mike or Matt return from Exile. Grant appears to be well liked by everyone. Assuming he was voted off this week, he'd have the opportunity to lobby for himself with the 3 jury members currently on Redemption Island. While unlikely, it's possible 2 members will return which could throw a wrench in Robs plan. I think his plan is to keep Grant who appears to be fiercely loyal and a strong competitor until the return of Mike, Matt, Andrea, or Ralph. Rob can then dispatch the returning party unless they win immunity at which point he could eliminate Grant. I predict next week Matt or Mike will rejoin the tribe. If they don't win immunity, they'll be sent home. If they do win, Grant will go home. And Rob will play his idol on the return of the other player to guarantee his player of choice is dispatched unless he wins immunity yet again.


Did anyone ever think to have a Survivor game that the last person to come in on a challenge is the one to be eliminated. That would me someone who should win would. This program is a personallity contest. Its getting tiresome to watch. Please think about changing the foremat.


So the last two episodes, I've felt there hasn't been much to talk about. But it continues to amaze me how Ashley and Natalie have absolutely no game plan at all, and how Andrea did not see that coming. I mean, they do realize someone is going home after Andrea, right? I actually thought that Rob perhaps should have gotten rid of Grant because he has a good chance of winning immunity and making it into the finals. As for Mike (who I'd like to win perhaps as much or more than Matt), I agree that he made that decision for unselfish reasons. I think he should have let Matt and Ralph bs with their family because if he makes it, those are two jury votes. On the other hand, they would vote for him anyway because lets face it, who would vote for any ometepe over someone from RI? Then again, I highly doubt his generosity will sway anyone on Ometepe. As soon as someone comes back into the game, the will vote him out the first chance they get without thinking about who is the low
Man on the totem pole. You might give Boston Rob the credit for that, and I do agree that he is very smart. However, I have never seen a group of people so disinterested in the winning the game. I have to agree with last weeks round table (I'm not sure who said it) that it needs to be all old people or all new people. I wonder of Rob hadnt been there is Grant
Would have stepped up. Or if Russell had been on Ometepe instead. I think he would have gotten a lot further but I don't think he would have created his cult following. At this point, unless they bring back the person into the finals or there is only one immunity challenge and that person wins it, it's going to be rob at the end with Natalie and Phillip and Rob should win unless they give it to Natalie just like they did on Samoa because Rob was the guy that decided when and how they would go out and Phillip may still be crazy. I guess at least now there is a small chance
Something could happen that's interesting. At this point though, I'm ready for next season!!

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Survivor Season 22 Episode 12 Quotes

Six Ometepe left. What are they going to do now?


Redemption Island keeps on getting crazier and crazier.