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Philippines – Episode 12: “Shot Into Smithereens”


It’s been a pretty busy day for me, and it’s getting pretty late on my side of the planet as I type those lines, so please excuse me in advance is this post is less than stellar (and full of typos). But enough finding excuses, let’s get into the heart of things.





Is one of these two guys this season’s winner? Could be…



 – Abi-Maria Gomes: Abi keeps on sucking at everything, challenges, social game, lying, and as such she becomes more and more desirable as the ideal goat for the final tribal council. It was obvious a few weeks ago, then she seemed to be going on her way out, but now she has become “desirable” again. The fact that she didn’t go home this week says a lot. Sure everybody was afraid of an immunity run by Carter as despite of his less than stellar game would have had a shot at winning the million had he made to the end. But it also tells that right now, even if the four remaining contestants not named Abi-Maria are in an alliance, I have the feeling that every single one of them would rather sit in the final tribal council next to Abi rather than next to any of their three allies. And even if I secretly hope for a final four with no goat (has it happen in recent memory?), I have the feeling that Abi will be present until the end.

Carter Williams voted out: He seemed like a pretty decent kid. His final words summed up pretty well his game play though, when he said something along the lines of “they decided to play with their brains and not with their heart”. Well, Carter, this is why one of them is going to win a million and you’re not. A pretty decent kid… Who didn’t really know how to play the game…

– Denise Stapley: I take the risk of repeating myself, but I still can’t understand why we see so little of Denise whereas she probably is playing the best game out there. It can only mean one thing: her “head on her shoulders, make no waves and use your brain” strategy is less interesting for the editors than Lisa’s tears and Abi-Maria’s lunacy and she won’t win despite that brilliant game. For example, it really has bothered me that we haven’t seen her have a conversation with Malcolm in many episodes. They must be strategizing everything together, right? For example, what was her reaction to her number one ally not picking her for the loved ones reward? Did they or did they not decide together before hand not to choose each other and choose Lisa and Skupin instead to strengthen their alliance? I feel more and more that if we don’t see it, it’s because it’s all in vain, that Denise will be out very soon, so she’s no more valuable than Carter in the eyes of the editors. Sad.

 Lisa Whelchel: Kuddos to Lisa’s brother to straighten her thoughts a little bit. The woman is more of a wreck right now that it seems. Well, there are clues. Her reaction and her tears when her brother showed up, the only “Survivor is bigger than me” thing, etc. Now thanks to her brother, she could keep her sanity until the end, and seeing how much screen time she gets, she could be our winner. Also, while I’m really tired of seeing people praying on TV, props to her for her comment about the fact that, no, God doesn’t pick side at Survivor or football games.

– Malcolm Freberg: Isn’t it ironic? Every season, when someone wins a reward challenge where they have to choose other people to enjoy the reward with them, they make the wrong choices and anger the wrong people. This season, Malcolm chose exactly the persons he had to choose (Skupin and Lisa, to make sure they stay tight with him and Denise) it almost backfires when the loved ones almost single handedly organize Malcolm’s blindside. He doesn’t know it – as he thought he was safe – but he really won immunity when he needed it the most. Now he’s in the final four (unless he makes a huge blunder next tribal, like play the idol for Denise thinking that she’s being targeted while he actually is), and from there anything in possible.

Michael Skupin: Today we finally saw him talking strategy. Right now, he too has a good chance to win the game if he makes it to the end.


Next time on Survivor:

Abi tries to manipulate Lisa into an alliance with her. Truth is that Abi makes sense. It is against Abi that Lisa has the most chances to win (well, it’s true for everyone else). And Abi believes that she may have a chance to win against Lisa (and she may indeed, against the other three remaining contestants, she doesn’t).

And with two episodes left and no goat (well, Abi is one, but at least she’s playing the game, she’s not just going with the flow), things are promising to heat up.

It’s also time to address something I hinted a few times in this spot. In the game, everyone is talking about a final three, but if we do the math (two episodes left, five contestants remaining) it seems obvious that we’re going to have a final two. I’m pretty happy about that, I really got tired of final threes. The thing is that while it’s not being shown, and while they can’t be sure of anything, the contestants must be thinking – and probably talking – about it too. This must be why Abi will try to get to the end with Lisa. What about everybody else? Do their game plan include a final three or a final two, because strategies differ with one or the other. Here too, I wish we’d saw more that those conversation.


Who will be voted out next?

The obvious choice is Abi-Maria… again… and once again, she could survive and we could have a shocker for an ouster, maybe Denise, or crazier, Malcolm (see his paragraph).

Winner Prediction:

I still hope it’s Denise or Malcolm. I see Lisa sneaking in past them more and more.


Before you go anywhere else, check out these great blogs and sites:

Dalton Ross at EW

– Jeff Pitman at True Dork Times

Rob has a Podcast and a few cool bloggers

Stephen Fishbach at People

– More will come as the season advances and I find them. I won’t always have time to update this list before the following week and post, but follow me on Facebook or Google+ (my Twitter account is not just for Survivor, so you may or may not like it, feel free to follow me there too if you want) for links to the best Survivor blogs I read/find.

As usual sorry for the typos (one day I’ll actually proofread myself) and if you like what you just read, do not hesitate to share with your friends and contacts.



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