Archive | May, 2015

Survivor Second Chance: Here’s Who I Would Pick

10 May

The cast of returnees for the next Survivor season will be chosen by fan voting! 16 men and 16 women are nominated, and 10 of each would be chosen. Here’s who I would pick. Let’s start with the men:


Terry Deitz (Season 12: Panama)

Why: A super challenge competitor who really should have won his season the first time. If he has developed a bit more of a social game he will really be deadly.

Troy “Troyzan” Robertson (Season 24: One World)

Why: The star of what has to be the worst tribe in Survivor history. Could he actually be successful going against good players? I’m eager to find out.

Stephen Fishbach (Season 18: Tocantins)

Why: On the podcast he co-hosts he has been critiquing current players for several years now. Is he going to learn from all of their mistakes?

Joe Anglim (Season 30: Worlds Apart)

Why: He was so good that he became a major target his first time around. With better luck he would surely be a threat to win this time, perhaps even the favorite.

Mike Holloway (Season 30: Worlds Apart)

Why: I hope he becomes ineligible by actually winning Worlds Apart, but if not I would love to follow this season’s best character for another season.

Vytas Baskauskas (Season 27: Blood vs. Water)

Why: Most of his success the first time came from lying, especially to women. Will people who saw his first season fall for his act?


Andrew Savage (Season 7: Pearl Islands)

Why: One of the best players on his season. It would be interesting to see if he can still compete the way the game has evolved.

Lukewarm because: It’s been a while.

Jim Rice (Season 23: South Pacific)

Why: Blunt and a villain of sorts. But he’s certainly competitive.

Lukewarm because: I seem to recall he talked a bigger game than he played.

Spencer Bledsoe (Season 28: Cagayan)

Why: He probably would have won his season if not for the force that is Tony. Very smart kid.

Lukewarm because: I didn’t love him as much as Jeff Probst and the producers seemed to.

Brad Culpepper (Season 27: Blood vs. Water)

Why: He got somewhat of a raw deal his first time around because certain people had an axe to grind.

Lukewarm because: He and his wife have certainly gotten their share of Survivor screen time.


Shane Powers (Season 12: Panama)

Why: Not the type you love to hate, more the type you just hate.

Woo Hwang (Season 28: Cagayan)

Why: Nice guy and fairly entertaining, just not a very shrewd player.

Jeremy Collins (Season 29: San Juan del Sur)

Why: He kept talking about what a strategist he is, but never really did that much and didn’t last that long.

Keith Nale (Season 29: San Juan del Sur)

Why: One season was fun, but he wasn’t a good player, as evidence by his awful “stick to the plan” moment.

Max Dawson (Season 30: Worlds Apart)

Why: The last thing I want to see is someone who does nothing but make lame references to prior seasons. But that is Max’s specialty.


Jeff Varner (Season 2: The Australian Outback)

Now we get to the women. Alas, the cupboard is barer here. I was going to provide all sorts of alternate suggestions, but unfortunately my favorite female players have all been on all-star seasons already, and thus are ineligible here.


Kelley Wentworth (Season 29: San Juan del Sur)

Why: Her father Dale completely dragged down her game when she played before, but she seemed very bright and perhaps even a bit sneaky. I think she might even go far.

Natalie Tenerelli (Season 22: Redemption Island)

Why: She was nothing but a pawn for Boston Rob the first time around. Did she learn anything from such a master? OK, OK, she is also very good-looking.

Tasha Fox (Season 28: Cagayan)

Why: She would be a threat to win the game. In Cagayan I actually thought Spencer and Tony might knock each other out and Tasha would win. She has a good social game and is good at challenges.


Kelly Wiglesworth (Season 1: Borneo)

Why: Barely losing to Richard Hatch is certainly a strong enough resume to earn one another shot.

Lukewarm because: More a good player than a good character, as I recall.

Peih-Gee Law (Season 15: China)

Why: A villain of sorts, from a fondly remembered season.

Lukewarm because: Maybe she didn’t get that far for a reason.

Kass McQuillen (Season 28: Cagayan)

Why: “Chaos Kass” is definitely never afraid to speak her mind or cause trouble.

Lukewarm because: I don’t seriously think she could win.

Ciera Eastin (Season 27: Blood vs. Water)

Why: She’s clever and competitive.

Lukewarm because: I’m not convinced she could do as well on a regular season without the loved-ones angle.

Mikayla Wingle (Season 23: South Pacific)

Why: I had to somehow choose ten, and at least Mikayla has an eye-poppingly fit physique for viewers to enjoy.

Lukewarm because: She wasn’t that great of a player.

Sabrina Thompson (Season 24: One World)

Why: She did well her first time around, though against very weak competition.

Lukewarm because: More a good player than good character.

Abi-Maria Gomes (Season 25: Philippines)

Why: Why indeed. Well, I had to pick ten.

Lukewarm because: More someone to cause conflict than someone who could win.


Carolyn Rivera (Season 30: Worlds Apart)

Why: Pretty good player, but not likeable.

Shirin Oskooi (Season 30: Worlds Apart)

Why: Very annoying and didn’t do anything of note as a player on her first season.


Monica Padilla (Season 19: Samoa)

Kimmi Kappenberg (Season 2: The Australian Outback)

Teresa “T-Bird” Cooper (Season 3: Africa)

Stephanie Valencia (Season 22: Redemption Island)


“That ain’t happenin’, brotha!” Survivor Worlds Apart May 6 2015 recap

10 May

Dan still doesn’t get it, apparently. Everyone assures him that just because he got two votes, that doesn’t mean he’s on the bottom of the alliance. And he buys it! Tyler tells the camera he wouldn’t describe Dan as extremely gullible but rather extremely loyal: “In this game, they’re kind of one and the same.”

Rodney is feeling good. Even though he has not won a reward to date, Carolyn and Will have both assured him they would take him on a reward if they were to do so.

When the challenge comes, for whatever reason it’s designed for two teams of three. There’s a schoolyard pick, so Will, not chosen, has no chance to win it. The team that wins is Mike, Sierra, and Carolyn, but Carolyn decides not to give her spot up for Rodney. He is furious, especially because it’s his birthday, which he gives as much significance as a ten-year-old girl might. He resolves to make sure neither Carolyn nor Sierra goes to the finals.

Rodney then proposes a plan. When Mike and the other two get back from the reward, Rodney will play on the disgust he has already voiced and say he wants to be voted out so he can go home. That way Mike will not play his idol out of a false sense of security, and everyone will vote Mike out. Rodney carries on in that vein for a while, but fairly soon Mike just announces flat-out that he doesn’t believe it. As he tells the viewers, “That ain’t happenin’, brotha! Just because I talk slow don’t mean I think slow.”

One person who’s certainly worried that Mike will play his idol is Tyler. He asks Carolyn if she would consider using her idol on him. She says she’d use it “when we need it.”

The challenge involves leaning way back off the edge of a bridge while holding onto a rope. When it’s time to descend to a lower handhold, only Mike, Tyler, and Carolyn are left. The men quickly drop off, and Carolyn wins.

Back at camp, Dan thinks the person voted out will either be himself, Mike, or Tyler. Then we see Carolyn propose splitting the vote between Mike and Tyler! But this is just to fool Dan … right? Everyone is certainly worried about Dan’s double-vote power. Meanwhile Mike tells Carolyn that he is going to vote for Tyler. Would she move to knock out her number-one ally?

After the voting, Mike does indeed play his idol. The first four votes are read, they are all for Mike, and do not count. We see a vote for Tyler, obviously Mike’s. Then Jeff Probst reads another Tyler vote! “That’s enough,” and Tyler is gone! So the person I considered most likely to win (as of last week) is gone. Carolyn did not help him! And obviously everyone’s thinking was: so what if Dan has a better chance to get to the finals? He would be much easier to beat at the finals than Tyler, therefore Tyler must go (Sierra and Carolyn were the other two who voted for Tyler).  It’s actually interesting that there were so many Mike votes, but obviously they wanted to guard against his simply bluffing and holding onto the idol for another week.

As for my rankings: well, this is embarrassing but I only have one favorite left. Up until now I didn’t have Will on my “no chance to win” list, since in my mind he still hadn’t done that one thing that would prevent him from winning. But I just don’t see any scenario where he gets chosen.

Favorites to win: Mike

No chance: Carolyn, Dan, Rodney, Sierra, Will

Jury and who I think they’ll vote for: Hali (Mike), Joe (Mike), Jenn (Mike), Shirin (Mike), Tyler (Carolyn)