Archive | January, 2017

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen-X Final Thoughts

31 Jan

This may have been billed as a battle between the generations, but the vast majority of the entertainment came from the Millennials. Even the ones who weren’t very good (like Hannah and Taylor) made for great TV.

Good things about this season:

  • A deserving winner in Adam. While he wasn’t the best player, he surely played the hardest of anyone.
  • The Adam/Jay rivalry was very entertaining, especially since they talked so openly about it with each other.

Bad things about this season:

  • There was no one great player and no one great character. Though certainly enough good ones in both categories to keep things interesting.
  • The idol plays were all pretty inept.
  • The first couple of episodes were fairly uneventful.

Sorry, nobody cracked my best players of all time list, or my best alliances of all time list. On the positive side, even Taylor’s ham-handed game wasn’t enough for anyone in this season to make my list of the the worst of all time.

You can check out my full rankings of the seasons here.

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“Those two fools didn’t look down.” Survivor Millennials vs. Gen-X Finale Recap

18 Jan

Bret can’t fathom why Sunday was voted out instead of David or Jay. He compares it to Navy SEALs deciding at the last minute not to take out Bin Laden! Hannah says she disagrees.

As for David, it turns out he has been setting aside beads and such throughout the entire game with the thought of making a fake immunity idol at some point. Now he steals away and makes one ,by firelight. Now, making a fake idol is nothing new, but it’s usually done so the person making it can brandish it and scare people into thinking it’s real. It’s been a while since a player has made a fake one just to fool someone else! This idol is very well-done, too — David even has some paint to apply to it, so it sort of looks like other idols on this season that had something painted on them. David “hides” it near a trail, and before long Jay spots it with Ken and David walking right behind him. Jay acts nonchalant and it’s all David can do not to burst out laughing at seeing Jay pretend not to notice it. Of course, Jay soon doubles back to grab it, and amusingly, he talks lots of trash to the camera in the vein of “Luckily those two fools didn’t look down.” He even kisses the fake idol.When the person being fooled is the one who thinks he’s fooling everyone else, that’s truly hilarious.

This is also the day that the Legacy advantage, which debuted near the beginning of the game, can finally be opened by Ken. Turns out it is guaranteed immunity at the next tribal council! Like a hidden immunity idol, it is to be played after votes are cast but before they are read. Ken sticks it in his cowboy boot.

The challenge is for immunity plus the reward of a steak dinner. Jay solves a number combination before everyone else, but his station has a cover that is meant to be to put on top of the numbers. However he forgets to use it. So everyone else can simply walk over and look at his numbers, meaning he has a small lead instead of a huge lead. Jeff Probst cannot harp on this blunder enough throughout the rest of the challenge. David ends up winning over Jay. Probst tells David he can choose two people to have the steak dinner with him, but quickly Jay announces he wants to use the “reward-steal” power that he was given by Adam. However, Jay says David is one of the people he wants to join him since David won the challenge fair and square. His other selection is Adam for giving him the reward-stealer. On the reward, Jay offers Adam and David a final-three deal and wants to sway them to vote Bret.

Back at camp, Bret says that Jay must go (despite the reward-stealer, the actual immunity itself stays with David). But privately he worries about the flakier people in the game. It’s safe to say Hannah is one of them. Her all-too-typical quote is “I’m a consistent maybe right now.”

After the vote at tribal council, Jay smugly hands his “idol” to Jeff Probst, who has some misleading intonation ready to go. Probst says, “This is ….. [Jay celebrates] … not … a hidden immunity idol. It is a work of art but it has no value in this game.” Jay realizes what happened and says, “You freaking got me, you bastards.” But we’re not done: Ken pulls his advantage out of his boot and plays it, while Jessica freaks out upon finding out what it is. There is one vote for Ken that doesn’t count and all the rest are for Jay (well, Ken actually votes “Justin,” but apparently that is Jay’s real name). Jay is a good sport and tells us viewers, “That was a million-dollar lock combination.” I think he’s probably right.

Without any further ado we go right to the next immunity challenge. David knows he’s now the biggest target left. The challenge ends with a puzzle, and the answer is “Participation Trophy!” Ken is the winner.

Afterwards, Adam goes looking for a hidden immunity idol, assuming one must be back in the game after Jay played one (the real one that is). We see the camera focus in on the idol as Adam walks right by it. While he searches, David proposes voting Adam out. And then Adam does find the idol. Bret is thrilled that all of the talk is about Adam or David. He does tell Adam he’s a target, and Adam shows him the idol. However, Adam tells the news to Hannah too, oh no! By the way, it’s interesting that Adam and Hannah are the last two Millennials in the game, I certainly would not have bet on either one!

When it’s time to vote at Tribal Council, Bret and Adam vote for David, but David, Ken, and Hannah all vote Bret, and the Bostonian is voted out. His immediate reaction is “the flippah flips again” (meaning Hannah). Bret congratulates David on being handed a million dollars. Hannah’s strategy puzzles me, she is just not playing to win.

Adam says David must not win the last challenge. That challenge is to stack bowls on top of a structure that’s on a spring. The first to stack all of them, or the person with the highest stack after 30 minutes, wins. Adam has almost as many as Ken, and makes the surprising decision to just step aside and not stack anymore, hoping Ken’s stack will fall. It works … but then Adam’s stack falls too. After 30 minutes Ken and Hannah are tied, and they do a 5-minute runoff. Ken wins by one bowl.

Now Hannah tells Adam she is 100% voting David. But they need to convince Ken to vote for David to avoid a tie and therefore a fire-making challenge! But Ken says he’s been with David from day one. Adam and David talk, and Adam says he only has a chance to win if David goes home. Adam practices fire-making in case it comes to that. David talks to Ken while the latter is chopping up a stingray, and Ken says “we’re good.” But at tribal council, Ken actually votes against David! David says “Vinaka” as he leaves … I have no idea what that means until I realize it’s the name of the merged tribe. So is there any way Ken doesn’t win the game now?

At final tribal council, Taylor asks the final three to make their pitches. Hannah says she helped vote out every single person who’s on the jury. Ken’s pitch is loyalty. Adam says he played the best game. A surprising questioner is Jessica, Ken’s number one fan … or so I thought. She says she is shocked that Ken voted out David. Get real, Jessica! Ken says “Dave, you were my #2 alliance. #1 is my daughter.” Based on the early questions you get the feeling Adam might actually have a chance to win.

When Jay asks his question, Adam alludes to something the two of them have in common … but doesn’t reveal that it’s a sick mother, and Jay doesn’t reveal it either. Chris tells everyone that he’s not a football coach as per his cover story (a story that wasn’t revealed to us viewers up to now). Rather, he’s a trial lawyer. But this is the first time he has ever served on a jury! Chris says he thinks the biggest move of the game was convincing Ken to vote David out. Therefore, he encourages the rest of the jury to vote for Adam. Ken is outraged by this and says nobody convinced him, it was his choice! At the very end of the questioning, Adam reveals that he and his mother applied to be on the Blood vs. Water season, and that his mother is now dying.

At the reunion show Jeff Probst reveals that the winner is … Adam! And not only that, the vote was unanimous!

I’ll be back with final thoughts on the season.