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Caramoan – Episode 6: “Operation Thunder Dome”



I don’t know about you, but I have the feeling that this season of Survivor has finally started after five episodes of embarrassing people and events on a beach. Now, that there’s only one troll on the island (there’s still one though) the editors have finally started to show us some game play. I mean, I was actually really excited to even hear some strategy talk today and even if everything that went down was quite predictable and nothing incredible happened, I was just elated to see and hear some sort strategy being discussed.

Apart from that the expected swap happened. I wish it had been completely random (dividing Fans and Favorites equally still puts the Fans at a serious disadvantage) but it allowed us to hear Erik and Brenda a little (I was losing hope) and even some of Julia.

Of course, like almost every time in a tribe swap, someone gets screwed, this time poor Matt that I was starting to really like.




Gota Tribe


– Andrea Boehlke: Not much about her this week, except for her weird conversation with Malcolm. I have the feeling that Andrea tends to overestimate her game play a little too much and she may get burned by that sooner or later.

– Brenda Lowe: Brenda spoke a little, how exciting is that? Also, she seems to recover from her injury, still it’s strange how it was not mentioned at all. Also, Brenda and Erik are the ones who have benefited the most from the swap. They both were in serious trouble in old Bikal, now they have a new lease in the game and should be able to make it to the merge. Good for them. Maybe we’ll even see them play at some point. Who knows? I’m not even sure they’re aligned with each other. That’s one thing that really annoys me when editors prefer to focus on the antics of a Brandon or a Shamar instead of showing us what’s going on in terms of game play.

– Eddie Fox: What a tool! Does he understand the game at all? I don’t think there’s an ounce of strategy in him. His game play is aligning himself with people he thinks are beautiful.

– Erik Reichenbach: See Brenda: the swap was a good thing for him, we saw a little bit of him too.

– Malcolm Freberg: I understand why Malcolm had to keep a low profile in old Bikal, but now it seems that his time to shine is about to come. Let’s hope he makes things interesting. Now, I’m not too sure why he’d want to rock the boat so early in the game. I mean, he’s aware is at the bottom 5 or 6 in the Stealth ‘R Us alliance, but shouldn’t he be making side deals with Erik and Brenda instead of Eddie and Reynold. But I’m extrapolating into the preview for next week here, so let’s talk about this next week.

Reynold Toepfer: He showed exactly why Fans don’t stand a chance in the Fans Vs Favorites format. As soon as the swap happened, he spilled all the beans about the old Gota tribe dynamics, sharing way too much information because he thinks that will save him to throw Sherri under the bus. Big beginner’s mistake as it’s gonna hurt him as much as – if not more – it will hurt Sherri (see Erik’s reaction).

– Sherri Biethman: Same as Reynold, until now she seemed as one of the best strategists this season, but she made that huge beginner mistake about giving away too much information about her old tribe dynamics; although it should hurt her less than Reynold.


Bikal Tribe


Matt Bischoff


Corinne Kaplan: The bitch is back. Although for some reason she’s still not completely unlikable (yet?) I even surprise myself rooting for her in the inevitable showdown between her and Phillip (but that’s because I’m kinda done with Phillip, now I just find him boring).

Dawn Meehan: Almost no Dawn this week… again…

John Cochran: Cochran is really the puppet master this season. Once again this week, he’s the one who suggested Matt over Julia in order to break up that tight duo that Matt and Michel were. Great move. Some people say that they should have kept Matt over Julia. I disagree, if they keep on losing challenges, they still have a buffer of two expandable people (Michael and Julia) until the merge and when it comes, Michael and Matt together could be a force to reckon with. Julia? Come on…

– Julia Landauer: When she had a confessional my first reaction was: she’s toast tonight! Well played editors for once, you fooled me.

– Matt Bischoff voted out: First I was a afraid he’d be the new Rupert and I was completely wrong. He could play the game and he didn’t last long. I really started to like him, but he’s one of the many people who got screwed by the swap. Too bad.

– Michael Snow: We didn’t see much of Michael’s thought process tonight, but he’s in trouble now that Matt is gone. He’d better start winning some challenges.

Phillip Sheppard: Seriously I’m tired of Phillip. He was sort of amusing in his first season. He was sort of amusing for a few minutes this season, but now that’s it, I’m definitely over him.



Next week:

Malcolm start making a lot of deals and gets into full game mode.


Next person voted out:

If Gota goes to tribal, Reynold seems like the obvious choice, but we could have some surprises.

If Bikal goes, I don’t think Julia can survive any longer.


Winner prediction: Cochran is still sitting on the top of my list right now. Dawn and Michael are a bit further behind with Malcolm.


And now, the usual links to the other analysts I really like (sorry for not posting them last week).

  • Rob has a website and a podcast and bloggers and a great “know-it-alls” show with Stephen Fishbach. Rob Cesternino was “the smartest player to never win the game” (with Fishbach in my opinion), he now has the best website about Survivor.
  • Superjude’s blog, always interesting, even when he’s grumpy.
  • Stephen Fishbach also has a column with
  • Dalton Ross is always great and hilarious at
  • Jeff Pitman at True Dork Times is also one of the most hilarious (and smart) Survivor blogger out there.
  • more to come…



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