Friday, April 14, 2006

When Captain America didn't fail?

"Survivor"-only post this morning. (Maybe "The Loop" and "The O.C." later today.)
He arguably should have used it at the merge, but at this point, I have no problem with Terry holding onto the idol. If he could have gotten some of the Casayas to flip so that he would have a majority alliance after TC, so be it. But he didn't, so the idol is more valuable to him than Sally. Plus, Sally's absence means that he's guaranteed to get rid of a Casayan whenever he actually pulls the thing out of his bag. (Though can someone like Bruce try to steal it? It's still not clear to me if that's allowed.)

That said, Terry and/or Sally could have tried some better mental strategery to sway these people. Basically go to as many Casayans as you can and say, "Okay, we have the necklace and the idol, and if you don't join with us, we're voting you out." Do whatever you can to scare yourself three extra votes so that the idol doesn't even have to come into play. Hell, go to Aras, who very clearly knows he's the target the second Terry is gone, if not before, and try to form an alliance with him, Shane and/or Bruce to get rid of the three Casaya women.

What's going to happen now is very interesting. We've seen immunity monsters before like Tom and Colby, and we've seen a last man standing like Chris turn that to his advantage, but we've never seen a combination of the two. I really don't think Terry can pull this off -- even if he makes it to final two, five of the jury members will be from Casaya, and they would have to really hate the other finalist to not give him/her the dough -- but I'm curious as hell to see if he can do it.

Quite good episode overall. Aras is still a superior tool, but at least he showed some brains (wanting to go to Exile Island to suss out whether Terry had found the idol) and heart (carrying the water for his entire alliance in that challenge). The only person in Casaya whom I will excuse for bailing on that challenge is Cirie, who was never going to win it and who, I believe, is the only one of them to not get a food reward yet. (Maybe Danielle hasn't, either, but if you want the right to bitch about Terry's boasts of unbeatability, you need to, you know, try to beat him.)

And Cirie's reaction to Shane's exposed junk again makes her my favorite to win. In fact, since I don't think Terry can pull the superhero thing off, she's not only the person I'm rooting for, but the one who I think has the best shot. Nobody is going to think of her as a threat in any challenge (Terry, Aras), and nobody is going to rush to get rid of her because she irritates them (Shane, Courtney), and against anyone else left, she's going to be the most likable. And I'm not sure any of these bozos are wise enough to realize that that makes her the greatest threat of all.

What did everybody else think?


Adam said...

There's another part of it -- by waiting this long, Terry now actually has something to offer the others. No one cares about whether they're the bottom two of a Casaya Six or the bottom two of a La Mina Six; however, the people who perceive they're at the bottom of Casaya now have something positionally to gain by switching.

Heck, because now's the time for Casaya to start to fracture anyway (break the plates! now!), if Terry can grab off an entire dissident 3/6, he doesn't even have to use the HII at all.

D. said...

The thing that I didn't understand was why Terry/Sally didn't approach Aras (at least on screen) about flipping. Between the fact that he thought he would be on the chopping block and the fact that he was annoyed that he was the only Casayan to do the immunity challenge, I would have thought he would have been ready for a flip.

I don't think Terry will be able to make it all the way, but I also don't understand why Casaya hasn't started breaking up given that they all hate each other so much. So who knows.

Most importantly, I think you are forgetting something about Cirie: She is afraid of leaves. That alone prevents me from rooting for her.

Alan Sepinwall said...

"I also don't understand why Casaya hasn't started breaking up given that they all hate each other so much."

Miss Alli on TWoP has the best theory on this. Usually, in a big alliance like this, there's an obvious pecking order, and when the people at the bottom of it realize they're at the bottom of it, it gives the minority alliance bargaining power. See the Rotu 4 in Marquesas or whatever the hell happened in Vanuatu after I stopped watching. The only way to get around that is to pull a Porno Brian or a Boston Rob and convince everyone that they're at the core of your alliance, whether they are or not.

The fact that few of the Casayans can stand each other actually works to their advantage. While the original alliance was Shane, Aras, Courtney and Danielle, it's not necessarily that anymore because the women can't stand the men, nor is it necessarily the final four that Shane told Terry about (with Cirie subbing for Danielle), nor is it necessarily the three women and Bruce. Unless promises have been made that we haven't been shown, I think everybody in Casaya is convinced that, when it's down to just the six of them, he or she will be able to pull off the power play to lop off the two they don't like.

Listen to the way Danielle was complaining that she can't wait to get rid of Terry and Sally; if she was for a second worried that she wanted to get an all-female alliance going, she wouldn't have said that, but the La Minas don't factor into anybody's plans.

Terry definitely has some power now, and if he plays this right, he won't even have to use the Idol the next time he loses a challenge, because his disruptive presence is going to be the straw that broke this alliance's back.

LawNut said...

What about Courtney and her fire dancing?? That was really the highlight of the episode for me. I kind of kept hoping she'd go up in flames, but sadly, she's rather dexterous with those sticks...

Louis said...

I continue to have that sinking feeling -- Aras is going to win. I don't like it, but I feel it.

Alan Sepinwall said...

doogald, actually, there was one time when the final challenge wasn't the endurance marathon: in Australia, Colby beat Tina and Keith on a Know Your Castmates trivia quiz. Weird that one of the more physically dominant players of all time made it to final two on a mental challenge.

As some of the winners of the endurance challenge haven't been people you would expect: Kim in Africa outlasting both Ethan (professional athlete) and Lex (that season's challenge monster) was sure a surprise. But endurance has always been a big problem for Cirie, and unless the other two people lose their concentration quickly, odds are she has to count on the generosity of the winner to make final two.