Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Survivor 25.1

Here is the Official Survivor: Philippines Recap Trilogy for week one:

Jamie is currently taking a well-deserved vacation in New Mexico. She was kind enough to check in through an email before the show began tonight. Because I didn’t want to call this week’s blog the Official Survivor: Philippines Recap “Duology” as Fellow Survivor Geek Patty 4-Names suggested, I have decided to include Jamie’s message.

“Hi. I won’t be able to watch from where I am tonight so I defer to you and Mary Beth. However, I do predict that the sex therapist wins it all, that Michael is still annoying and that Lisa Whelchel takes Angie under her wing as a Young Blair and that they are both attacked by a wild pig in the jungle and only one blonde survives.”

Here we go! I have to admit that after last season I was put off by how blah and boring the show had gotten. But, the Survivor Geek inside me came alive this afternoon when I felt that familiar twinge of anticipation! And then it was on! Oh, how I love that opening theme song!

So, Survivor: The Philippines - First thing to notice is there are three tribes which had already been decided upon before the people even got on the boat. The first twist? Three previous players from past seasons return to try again. All three left their seasons for reasons of injury and they were all three ready to take on a new beginning.

Jonathon – got airlifted off his season when an open wound became dangerously infected.

Russell – had possible the scariest moment in Survivor history when he simply passed out during a challenge, eyes rolling back in his head and became unresponsive.

Mike – fell in the fire on his season and had shards of skin melting off his hands.

I happened to really like all three of these guys during their original seasons. This time? Not so sure! The three of them were assigned one of the three tribes and off they went.

It will be interesting to watch how they progress throughout the season because as I recall none of them were the best of their tribes originally. Now they're the seasoned veterans who usually comes with a target on your back but I don't think the others know too much about them except for their injuries!

The tribes – Matsing, Kalabaw and Tandang – were given ten minutes to take as much supplies and food off the boat as they could get onto a raft and it was game on. Like last season, there was A LOT of food available right off the bat.

At Kalabaw, the younger members of the tribe began plotting against Jonathon pretty much right away. Of course, he didn't do anything to even try to include himself in their group but rather spent much of his time alone searching for the hidden immunity idol. He did find a clue in the rice box but no idol was found yet.

Over at Matsing, Russell spent a lot of his time telling everyone how he didn't want to be a leader and that they were all equal and then proceeded to direct them in how to do absolutely everything. He's not making any friends, that’s for sure.

But he wasn't the real issue tonight. The real issue was a nut head named Zane who, in spite of having most of the tribe really like him, managed to throw himself under the bus in what he thought was a brilliant move to get Russell ousted at Tribal Council. I'm going to be thinking about that move all night just trying to figure out his weird logic!

At Tandang, Mike fit right in and it seems age doesn't mean a thing there. No age line was drawn and younger folks even sought him out to start alliances. They may think twice, however, when they see what a klutz he is! He cut himself three times already!

Moment that made me just scratch my head in wonder: How is it only one person knows that Lisa Whelchel was Blair on the Facts of Life? Where have these people been, under a rock all these years?

Best line of the night: RC says to the camera, “They have no idea what it takes to be a good investment banker! I mean, hailing cabs, in the rain, in six inch heels!”

First money is on: So far, Malcolm looks like he could go the whole nine yards but it's early so it's hard to tell who might step up to be a front runner.

The Emmy Award-winning reality series kicked off season 25. Survivor: Philippines began with iconic host Jeff Probst welcoming eighteen new castaways as they embark on the adventure of a lifetime. This season the castaways are divided into three tribes, each of which features a veteran player that was forced to leave their previous season via a medical evacuation. Here are the tribes:

Kalabaw Tribe (Red)
Jonathan Penner*
Dana Lambert
Jeff Kent
Katie Hanson
Carter Williams
Sarah Dawson

Matsing Tribe (Blue)
Russell Swan*
Angie Layton
Malcolm Freberg
Zane Knight
Denise Stapley
Roxanne Morris

Tandang Tribe (Yellow)
Michael Skupin*
Lisa Whelchel
Abi-Maria Gomes
Peter Yurkowski
Roberta “RC” Saint-Amour
Artis Sylvester

* - Returning veteran player

Tonight’s episode was 90 minutes long. As much as I love this show, one hour would have been sufficient. The show began with Probst acting like he didn’t know that the “guy in the purple shirt” was former MLB star Jeff Kent. Come on! He played for the Mets, Blue Jays, Indians, Giants, Astros and Dodgers. Even Dawson knew who he was.

Lisa Whelchel started out hoping that nobody would recognize her from the ‘80s sitcom, The Facts of Life. Ten minutes later she was bummed because only Michael recognized her as Blair. And that’s because he’s 50 years old.

The first half of the show was dedicated to introducing us to the castaways. A lot of blah, blah, blah. All I got out of it was that I already don’t Jeff Kent, Russell Swan and Zane Knight. Let me explain.

I never liked Jeff Kent as a baseball player. He was a red-assed hillbilly from Texas who thought he was the only one allowed to play hard. From what I saw tonight, I don’t think he has changed any.

Swan falls into the same category. I didn’t like him the first time he was on Survivor and still don’t. He talks way too much. You might have noticed that I called him Swan. There is only one Russell and his name was Hantz.

Speaking of Hantz, this Zane Knight character is strictly a Hantz-wannabe. Only a lot freakier. His first of stroke of genius was to make alliances with everybody on the Matsing tribe. Okay…

Please don’t get the impression that I didn’t like anybody from this year’s cast. That’s not true. There were several competitors that caught my eye. However, one in particular really stood out. The curvaceous Roberta “RC” Saint-Amour. I am quite fond of RC. Very fond. I hope she sticks around deep into the season.

Michael Skupin was doing everything he could to medically evacuated again. He hacked his fingers and his hands in several places, opened a big gash on his foot and had a nice slice across his ample forehead. His apparent path of self-destruction caused Pete to comment, “Let’s see what happens when we get fire.”

The Immunity Challenge saw the Kalabaw tribe barely edge out Tandang. For finishing first, they not only avoided Tribal Council, but also received a complete fire starting kit. Tandang had to settle for flint, but the also received immunity. That meant Matsing would have to vote someone off.

Back at their camp, Swan was trying to rally his tribe’s spirits after their disheartening loss. Before he could finish, Zane interrupted and basically told them that he sucked in the challenge and should be voted off. Honest, he did.

Afterward, he revealed that this was a diabolical plan of his. That this was somehow going to make everyone vote Swan off instead of him. It was like he thought he was an evil genius. Only without the genius part.

At Tribal Council Probst made Swan sweat by getting the rest of the Matsing tribe to agree that he acted like a dictator at camp. Fortunately, Zane admitted that he told everyone he should be sent home because he wasn’t up to the physical part of the game. Something to do with smoking four packs of cigarettes a day.

Apparently the tribe believed Zane because they all voted him off. Even though I thought he was a freak and didn’t like him, a part of me is going to miss him. He made for interesting TV. But not as interesting as RC. Did I mention that I am fond of RC?

Before you click away from the blog, cast your vote on my poll. I’m trying a new feature – I wanna see who you would have voted off. Until next time…from the booth.

Until next time…from the booth.

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