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Survivor

Survivor Review: Who Voted For Tarzan?

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Just when it looked like Kim was going to take her place alongside the great Survivor manipulators like Boston Rob and Parvati this week the votes were read at tribal council. After three different people all had two votes I found myself asking one question:

Who voted for Tarzan?

Kat Edorsson, Jay Byars, Alicia Rose, Christina Cha and Chelsea Meissner

Fortunately, the votes are shown each week while the newly evicted castaway is giving his goodbye. We actually know who voted for whom. However, let’s go back to those 90 seconds in between Mike being sent home along with two votes for Christina and two votes for Tarzan and relive when we were trying to figure out what just happened.

What we knew going in to tribal council was that Kim was orchestrating a brilliant plot to organize the game in such a fashion where here, Chelsea and Sabrina were the three people standing at the end. For a while now I’ve said that all Kim and Chelsea need are each other, but I’ll allow Sabrina in to the equation. What remains important is that the alliance is small.

With the first piece of the plan figured out Kim then concocted a plan to get Troyzan to turn against Mike. The idea certainly sounded thin – convince Troyzan that Mike was saying he was a threat – and Kim’s delivery needs polish, but it worked.  Troyzan bought it hook, line and sinker. 

The final piece of the puzzle was keeping the plan from Jay until the absolute last moment. Chelsea ruined this part by suggesting to Jay that they vote off Mike in front of Christina and Alicia. Jay got immediately suspicious and when Kim found out she went in to full damage control mode.

This is where Kim was at her best. Scout Kat reported that Jay and Mike went for a walk and Kim hustled after the pair to break up and discussion of getting rid of Mike.  Just when Jay was about to spill the beans Kim seamlessly cuts him off, suggests Christina to keep them both assuaged and Jay is distracted enough to not finish his story.

Simply put, it was remarkable. Kim was amazingly deft with her timing and choice of words. She seemed in complete control of the tribe and the game. A new Godfather of Survivor was born... and he was a she.

What do we know after Kim prevents a disaster? Kim and the women are contemplating a flip of the game and somehow have Troyzan on board. Jay is suspicious of the women. Mike thinks Christina is going home. Tarzan and Leif are barely playing the game.

When the votes are being read everyone’s expecting either Mike or Christina to go home. After reviewing where we stand in the game, where would two Tarzan votes come from? Leif? Jay? Mike?

Instead we find out that Christina and Alicia voted for Tarzan. Huh? And Jay voted for Mike. Really? And Leif voted for Mike. What?!?!

Clearly there’s no all-women alliance because Alicia and Christina were not even in on the plan. They were so out of the loop on both sides they voted for as their own block, basically. To people who really do not like each other were forced together out of having nowhere else to go. 

At the same time, Leif somehow gets on board with voting Mike out.  Where did that come from? The old Salani tribe traded Mike for Leif. I definitely did not see that coming.

Even if you buy the theory that Alicia and Christina threw votes at Tarzan to keep the guys off the scent of an all-female alliance (and I don’t – WAY too dangerous if Troy and Jay are not on board) that still doesn’t explain where Leif’s sudden inclusion in the alliance came from.

The big question that remains is; what in the name of Rob Mariano is Kim doing? What happened to all of the moxie and strategy that built this awesome plan to flip the game?  As next week’s previews allude to (admittedly they’re called a tease for a reason) the women are anything but all together. 

Frankly, they shouldn’t be united. Alicia’s desperate enough to believe that she can work with the women even as they left her out of this most recent plan because she doesn’t really have any other options. The guys don’t like her or trust her. 

Christina, on the other hand, should have options. For several weeks now she should have been positioning herself as a swing vote. However, she’s blindly followed the women, believing she’ll hang around. I guess she’s proven that correct so far.  I’m just curious how long it’ll last.

More from this episode:

  • Speaking of Christina, how could she honestly say at tribal council that she would have been shocked if she was sent home? It’s one thing to believe you’re not going home, but admit it’s a possibility and you wouldn’t be stunned. She answered Jeff’s direct question with a no. She seems smart, but I wonder if she’s really clueless.
  • The gulf between Kim and Chelsea grew this week. Not in their relationship, but in their chances to win the game. Chelsea can match Kim for likability, but is clearly lacking that cut-throat characteristic needed to win Survivor. Her conversation with Jay proved that.
  • I was surprised that Tarzan did not get to go on the reward with the winning tribe. This is the first time I can remember that the survivor not picked is actually excluded from even winning the challenge. Usually the one not picked is guaranteed a spot on the winning team.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
  • 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (10 Votes)
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As predicted, voting out a man (Jonas) first in a 6M6W merge would definitely bite the men, especially when the game was started off with men vs women concept. It is also very disappointing that Troyzan would get so easily deceived by Kim's words on Mike. In a nutshell, women has already won the game (most probably Kim) unless the men has done something extraordinary or that the women has self-destructed. As for Leif voting for Mike, i don't think that Leif had any idea with the women's plan. He just voted for Mike because he wanted to.(Remember last week where Leif was the only one voting with Jonas for Mike)

Mr-probst

@CeS - Agreed. It certainly seems like some important parts were left out to add to the drama. Disappointing because I'm sure they could have kept them in and edited it to the point where we were potentially even more confused. @blingerz - What's interesting about the analogy is neither won in their first two seasons. It took Heroes vs. Villains to get Parvati a title and even then she needed Russell to take a lot of the blows in front of her. Does this mean neither Kim nor Chelsea will win? Of course, Kim and Chelsea are playing a far different game than Parvati and Amanda.

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chelsea and kim = amanda and parvati. 'nuff said.

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Great review. Your insight appears to be spot-on.

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I agree, it would be nice to be able to see some of the strategy that went into the vote in the end. It was left so ambiguous as to whether Alicia and Christina were plotting with the women or if they just threw votes at Tarzan for his lack of likability. however i do understand the need for the producers to keep the audience guessing and keep that suspense.
I think Kim is really coming into her own even more so than ever now, you were spot on with her amazing timing, just as it seemed that she had lost all control, she perfectly worded and timed her words and gained control f the game again. However it would have been nice to see exactly how the girls finally got jay to swing his vote back onto Mike.

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Great review, Luke. While I appreciated the producers' attempts to blindside and confuse the audience (rather successfully, I should point out), I think it worked against them this week. I would much rather have seen more of the strategizing and conversation that led to such a strange vote, even if it meant that I would know all going into it who was going home.