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One World – Episode 7: The Beauty in a Merge



I say it pretty much every season, but the game really starts at the merge. It’s not always true. The game can even get boring at this point until the final five or six when we face pagongings like last season. However, this season I have the feeling we could have a few great episodes ahead. Don’t you agree?

Also, it felt good to have an episode sans Colton. If we could get rid of Alicia soon, it’d be perfect.




– Alicia Rosa: Not much about her this week except for some random drunk comment at the beginning of the episode. She’s now totally disposable and has lost whatever power she once had. Her strategy now revolves around voting Christina out, and that’s pretty much it. Which means, it will certainly happen pretty soon, and she’ll be next.

Chelsea Meissner: I’m not sure how much she plays the game and how much she just follows and does whatever Kim tells her to do. I think it’s the latter. For example, it’s clear that she wanted to keep Jonas, and it’s clear that Kim wanted him out. Guess who got her way?

– Christina Cha: She seems safe for now, but as she’s still disposable, and that for some reason not many people seem to like her (what are we not seeing about her that makes her so disliked or at least not liked by her fellow contestants?). Last week’s edit seemed that she could have a super underdog storyline who survives everything until the end, but seriously I doubt it.

– Greg “Tarzan” Smith: Where should I start with him? Well, you saw the episode (if you haven’t why are you reading this?). We have our new Phillip Sheppard. Now the question is how far will he go? I mean, he can’t play the game, that’s more than obvious. What’s worse with him than with let’s say Leif (who can’t play the game either) is that Tarzan thinks he’s playing it. he doesn’t understand the social part of it, he can’t keep his cool at tribal council, he’s totally unreliable, but he thinks he’s playing. Now, if you’re the other contestants, you have a choice to make. Do you bring him with you to the end as the perfect goat? Or is he just too unreliable that any tentative of alliance with him may just blow up in your face? I guess the perfect strategy with him is probably to bring him to the end without ever make an alliance with him. Tricky, especially because it means that you’ll need to betray one more person in your alliance and potentially lose one more jury vote.

– Jay Byars: He made a big mistake this week. He assumes way too much about how solid the Salani alliance is. Suggesting voting Jonas out was stupid, and it is exactly what Kim needed, having one less man and not even being the one who seems to be the ringleader. Jay thinks that he’s in a solid alliance, Jay may soon find out that he has a much bigger target on his back than he may be thinking. I smell a big blindside coming his way.

– Jonas Otsuji voted out: I’ve been ambivalent about Jonas this whole time. I saw him as an early favorite who rapidly lost points when he let Colton dictate him what to do. I thought he could rebound from that with the merge. Who would have thought that he’d be targeted so early? If his eviction was not exactly a blindside for him, it was for me in a way. I guess this is what happens when you end up being the strongest in a tribe of misfits. What I wish we had seen more was how much Troyzan tried to save him (that would have given us insight into how much Troyzan is aware or not a possible coup from Kim/Chelsea). I’d also like to know if this stupid idea to “attack” Michael during tribal council was planned or not. I guess he knew he was out, so his last scrambling was to publically target the “obvious choice” at such a point in the game.

Kat Edorsson: Not much from her this week.


Kim, this season’s “godmother”, or…


Kim Spradlin: Another perfect play from her this week. She got exactly what she wanted – a man out – to keep her options open, and go with Salani if it’s the more viable option or go with the women if it’s a better idea to further her in the game. Although at this point, she should start thinking about a mix of both, not sure. I feel that staying loyal to Salani is easier. If she goes with the women, she’ll have to get rid of Troyzan, Michael and Jay first and then find a way to be in the final three with weak players (Kat, Alicia and/or Christina) without upsetting Chelsea and Sabrina if she wants their votes. Staying with Salani means that she’ll “just” have to dodge the bullets when Troyzan and Jay will gun for Sabrina and Chelsea and vice-versa… Well, not that easy actually. It’ll be difficult for her to win as she’ll have to betray people. However, she still the one playing the game the best at this point. Let’s see how long this lasts.

– Leif Manson: I wonder why Leif voted for Michael. I guess not to “betray” Jonas. However, we all know how stupid it is to throw out your vote like that. I don’t Jonas would have been pissed if Leif had voted hor him. On the other hand, Michael may be, and when you’re probably next to go, it’s not good to have another isolated person against you instead of trying to do something with them.

– Michael Jefferson: Strange how a strong guy without an alliance is not considered a target when the merge comes (well, Jonas tried) but even seems under the radar. I see why Salani will want to keep him, for a few more votes, but they gotta be careful of a possible immunity run from Michael. However, this is the only thing that can save him once Manono is wiped out and/or the women decide to attack the men.

Sabrina Thompson: I’m not sure where Sabrina stands right now. Last week I assumed that she was in a weaker position than she looked. This week I’m not so sure. She’s solid with Chelsea and Kim, that’s for sure. That could help her along the way, as she could “blame” them as the ringleaders if she gets to the final three. In any case, the road for the final five seems paved for her, beyond it’s up in the air.


… or is this Troyzan’s game to lose?


– Troy “Troyzan” Robertson: Troy is also a very good position. Dominant alliance, hidden idol (and he’d better keep it hidden until he needs it), has friends among the people that will go early in the jury (Jonas, Leif) and won’t be bitter at him. However, he gotta be careful to not be too cocky. I mean, he can be cocky all he wants in confessionals, but in front of his teammates? Not a great idea to loudly say “this is my island” and things like that. All he had to be careful about now is some backstabbing from the women. If they don’t, or if he succeeds in countering them, that’s really his game to lose at this point, but can he defeat a more or less surprise “assault” from Kim, Chelsea and Sabrina? Pleading in his favor is also the editing. He’s getting more and more of a winner’s edit. We’ll see.


Next Time on Survivor:

Will the women take over the man and backstab them?

I believe this is misdirections from the preview. They just need to vote Leif out, and everything will go according to plan without making any wave.


Who’s next to go?

Leif is pretty much gone at this point.


Who’s gonna win?

It’s still a toss up between Kim, Chelsea and Troyzan, with Sabrina little by little joining them.


Before you go anywhere else:

– Tell me what you thought of this episode in the comments.

– Go check out those very fine sites and blogs made by real fans:

  • Super Jude’s thoughts. He always sees what I forget to mention.
  • Jeff Pitman’s True Dork Times, always funny and full of great insights.
  • More will come.



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