Thursday, April 27, 2006

Survivor: When someone other than Captain America did something

Okay, looks like I got the spoiler protection right on the "VM" post, so let's give it another shot with tonight's "Survivor." Again, if you don't like this arrangement, let me know in the comments.

In today's column, I alluded to Cirie pulling a strategic move that's the best of its
kind I've seen since Amazon Rob. At the time, I was working off a preview tape that cut off just as the votes were being cast, so I wasn't sure if she had pulled it off. Knowing that she had, I have to direct some major applause in the direction of our resident sufferer of Phyllophobia. Because, damn.

She still may not win, but there was no way she was going to win if she hadn't engineered Courtney's boot. Terry, who right now looks like the most obvious candidate to win the
final 3 challenge, wanted to bring Courtney before the jury. So did Shane, who until now had been calling all the shots about who stayed and who goes. By eliminating Courtney, Cirie has made the F2 choice much more of a toss-up, she's gained the eternal gratitude (and potential votes) of Danielle and Aras by saving each of them from a potential boot at the hands of either Shane or Terry, and now she may be in the power position in her alliance. Unless there's a purely mental immunity challenge between now and the end, Cirie's not going to be able to count on having that necklace, so now her only path to victory is by eliminating anyone who the final three winner might want to face more than her.

The downside, of course, is that after more than a month (in game-time) of getting along by going along, she has now revealed herself to be a puppet-master of the first order. (To the players, not to us; anyone who watched her talk Melinda and Ruth Marie into keeping her and getting rid of Tina knows the woman has some serious mental game.) The fact that Danielle and Aras owe her so big makes her a less appealing final two competitor, and on the flip side, she's definitely cost herself Courtney's vote. So if she's up against, say, Terry, she's probably already lost (Austin, Sally and Bruce seem firmly in Terry's pocket, though I could be wrong). No one has even though of voting against Cirie since the night Melinda went home, but when you pull the wool over two of the power players, you no longer get to fly under the radar.

Still, Bravo. At this point, she needs to pray that Terry loses the next challenge so they can force him to cough up the idol, then stick close to Aras and pray he can beat Terry in the final challenge.

Good to see the return of Bruce, though he still looked a little green around the gills on that jury bench. (Or maybe he just suffers in comparison to Austin, who now looks like a catalog model after a week of bed rest and grooming.) Oh, and Shane? Greg Buis called; he wants his coconut phone gimmick back.

What did everybody else think?


velvetcannibal said...

I love Cirie. I was delighted when her plan worked, even though I wasn't surprised. They weren't giving Aras enough airtime to be booted.

That was such a smart move, and I can't wait to see how the rest of it plays out. I'm invested now.

Adam said...

Wow. You're absolutely right on the Rob C comparison, only this one was better -- he just was able to move week-to-week to shift things; she has now destabilized everyone's F2 plans.

But now, here's the rub: everyone remaining now understands that Cirie will lie to people in order to pull off whatever she's trying to do, and that she's good at it. So why trust her now?

I have no idea what anyone's next move is, or why Aras is seen as such a threat when he hasn't really won anything yet.

Anonymous said...

Best OC of the year. Hands down.

Anonymous said...

Wow - did not see this coming. Rosie O'Donnell will replace Meredith on The View. I hear that they will announce it tomorrow night on The Daytime Emmys on ABC.
What do you think about this?

Anonymous said...

I don't think Cirie's tipped her hand about her game skills to anyone but us. Terry's always discounted and disregarded her, so his opinion of her will remain unchanged (although he might see what she did, but he still won't see her as a true threat). Aras sees it as Cirie having his back and doing him a favor; in his mind, he's the power player, not her. Danielle is on her side too, so probably won't be threatened by her. That only leaves Shane, and it looked from the previews that she and Aras convince him they were doing it for his own good and I suspect they will calm him down.

It was a brilliant move -- one of the best I've ever seen on this show AND that was successful. I've liked her from the beginning, for good reason. Go Cirie!

Louis said...

She rocked, didn't she?

Nilbo said...

I've always kind of liked Cirie as a person, as opposed to a contestant - she seems to have a good head on her shoulders and doesn't take too much too seriously.

It baffles me how she got selected for the series, though - I mean (and I have been overweight my whole life, so I feel like I can say this without being offensive or sexist) a non-athletic, obese girlie-girl who has hysterical revulsion to fish, snails, bugs and even leaves on the ground does not seem to be your ideal candidate for a contestant on a series like this. If that's unfair to say, I'm sorry - but it seems like it's an accurate assessment.

But she's there, and I wonder if any other cntestant will look at her finally and realize "Wow - if there was ever someone who I would not like to be up against in the final two, there she is, right there."

As the challenges progress, they will become less and less about strength and more and more mental. Terry has that Immunity Idol in his back pocket, so he has some wiggle room. His dream final three is Terry, Shane, and Danielle. I wonder if he's smart enough to look past his fixation with Aras (who LOOKS athletic, but really, what has he won?) - and grab the first opportunity to get rid of the real threat?

Anonymous said...

She rocked the house, Louis! I love Cirie and I hope she continues to outwit these nitwits and win, though just making F2 would be fine, too.

I think what makes her good for this show, despite the things going against her physically, is her mental toughness and her personality. Burnett frequently chooses at least one person who the audience looks at and thinks, "WTF is s/he doing there?" but if he chooses well, that person usually turns out to be entertaining. Besides, how boring would it be if they were all a bunch of Fireman Toms?

Anonymous said...

Actually, Terry has two bargaining chips he can use -- the Immunity Idol and The Car. Someone who figures they can't win might give him a vote for the car!

Matt Brown said...

I'm very, very happy that Cirie's plan worked. It's always nice to see another power emerge in the group.

Alan Sepinwall said...

Anonymous, Terry can't offer the car. One of the few ironclad Survivor rules is that you're not allowed to share prizes (unless it's a reward retreat like the spa thing Cirie took Aras and Danielle on). In the fall, when Cindy was faced with the car dilemma, I asked someone at CBS whether she could have said, "Okay, I'll give you all cars, but if I don't win the million, the winner has to give me their car." I was told that wouldn't be allowed, just like Tina couldn't buy Colby the motorcycle she promised.