Welcome to another weekly ride into a journey we call Survivor South Pacific. This episode was ready at the get go. So with that in mind let's get 'er going!
Ozzy's Strategy of Redemption Island
A chance for redemption is the premise it was initially supposed to be. If you are voted out of the game it is there to give you a shot to return back into the game at a later date.
However this season it became strategy rather than a symbol of the game.
Which is why I think they should get rid of it. Don't bring it back. It's becoming less of the meaning it was supposed to be intentionally meant for and is becoming like Grand Central Station for Ozzy Lusth..a guy who's only real skill for Survivor is catching fish and winning challenges. So guess what is ideal for him? You got it!
On RI you don't have to play a social game. In fact you really don't have to play the game at all unless you want to plant seeds into people's heads. On RI your only two concerns are eating what you can find (in this case a big fish) and winning challenges. Right up Ozzy's alley. So it's no shocker that Ozzy quite probably approached Savaii and said "guys let me go back to RI. I volunteer!"
Though it wasn't shown on the episode I honestly think he did. The clues are what he said at the end of Tribal Council "You guys fell for my master plan!" and how he laid it all out at Tribal.
Several edits tell me he may meet with success on RI. The scene just after his exit that I term "the mer-boy scene" show just what he said he would do which is catch a lot of fish and the fish he caught was pretty hefty. Daily eating large fish like that will keep his strength up for challenges. Plus Ozzy seems to thrive in that type of environment. The scene of him climbing up a tree shows he is at home there. Without the stressors of the active part of the game Ozzy is most likely gonna do well on Redemption Island.
Which in my opinion shows the balance sum of his game. Which can be summed up in the fact that he prefers solitude on RI to an active social strategical game. That this option is the only way he has to advance!
For someone to get far on the basis of that is in my opinion a mockery of what true Survivor stands for. It's out wit out play out last.
That means other competitors in the game setting itself.
Ozzy in my opinion doesn't have that ability. So he uses RI to keep him in as far as RI can take him. Which most likely will take him to the return into the game and then an exit post return.
We shall see but in the edit I did see some hints of the above.
Why Jim Made Himself Dispensable
Well it looks like for Jim Rice it was open mouth insert foot at Tribal Council. What was all this about "honor and integrity"? Man was that too direct or what? I just didn't buy it either. It seemed so contrived. Like it was a play towards Coach more than anyone. As Coach is the decisive Upolu power. Coach didn't buy it tho and stated that for them to vote off Cochran would be like sending a message that "to stand up for yourself will get you screwed over".
However what Jim did was appear way too desperate and over emotional. Plus he showed he can be very strong in challenges in winning an immunity.
The way he approached Coach Wade's 2 strategical allies Albert and Sophie was like watching some military movie and watching Gregory Peck as General Douglas MacArthur in a scene doing war planning. It actually seemed funny. Plus his referring to drinking the "Coach Kool Aid" cracked me up!
But where Jim had his downfall was he oversold the Cochran speech. He wouldn't let go of his anger at Cochran and therefore made himself expendable. As it appears that for the moment to assuage Cochran's fears; Coach and Upolu are allowing his voice to be heard on key voting decisions. Cochran isolated the next two votes right off the bat. Ozzy went and then Jim. So by not chilling out Jim made himself expendable. Then just kept layering it on. If he would have stayed lower key I think Dawn may have gone first but instead Jim inserted his foot into his mouth and through that he ended up on the chopping block.
I have heard from a former member of his tribe however that Jim did not play an honest game though. So much for playing with integrity.
However I did like Jim as he had a great strategical mind and I loved his confessionals which were often smart and amusing.
From Under The Radar To Viable Threat: Dawn Meehan
From the beginning of the season something about Dawn Meehan reminded me so much of Holly Hoffman. Now watching her post merge I see shades of Holly emerging big time.
Like Holly; Dawn has won immunity.
Like Holly; Dawn is social, compassionate, caring.
However unlike Holly; Dawn doesn't quite yet have her feet into the Upolu circle. She could have flipped with Cochran as she initially wanted to..but Dawn held back. The holding back is strategical but I think it also hurt her as well.
However as it stands now Dawn is a pretty viable threat in the game.
(Social Threat) Threat Assessment 1: Dawn is social and way too likable. Case in point Upolu cheered her on to win and Dawn even said "I will stay up here longer so you can eat more" By saying that she is trying to get on a good side with them. But in reality if they are still your competition you don't want them stronger than you so they can beat you next challenge. By eating that gives them strength. Caring is great and shows a capacity to reach out but it may be what bites you in the foot next challenge.
(Physical Threat) Threat Assessment 2: She is showing she can win or come close to winning challenges and is strong. At each challenge so far Dawn has won two immunities and placed 3rd in one and second in another. She's feisty and capable. She could go on a run if needs be to save herself.
(Strategical Threat) Threat Assessment 3: Her recent extending an olive branch to old Upolu. Knowing how to hold back before treading water until the numbers were lower makes her a strategical threat as well. She hasn't flipped yet but she is flirting with it. Which Coach and Upolu can see through. I don't think Coach and Company will provide a door for her. Mainly because she would be the player NOT to take to the end.
Dawn would be a nightmare to take to the Finals for any Upolu member as she would most likely garner all the Savaii votes. Which is enough to guarantee a win. A thinking Upolu member will not allow her that far though and knowing Coach Wade's game...most likely she is next on the chopping block. As taking her farther in means handing her the game. Which is something I doubt Upolu will do.
Dawn is amazing though and I have much respect for her!
I love me some Sophie Clarke.
She is the girl I wanna be when I finally decide to be it. She speaks Russian. She is a highly observant player. She's physically strong in the challenges and came within inches of beating Jim (darn it!) The one thing I like about Sophie are her confessionals. You can tell she has already assessed it, stored it and has formed a plan.
I think besides Coach; Sophie is the next one I could root on for a win this season as well. She's fun. She's classy. She's fast becoming my she-ro. I am going to start watching her closely as now they are starting to show more of her strengths.
She has I feel been a strategical balance for Albert and for Coach Wade. I love how when she is talking strategy or listening to someone else's strategy it appears as if she is looking a hole right through someone.
She could end up being the dark horse this season.
This is the Season Of Coach Wade. Biggest Comeback Ever?
This season has proved to everyone that this is definitely the season of Coach Wade.
The Maestro of Survivor has played a solid game from the start and has not wavered in his goal to win this season. He started out being called a "temporary player" by Christine (who in the end was the "temporary player") and the start was shaky. But Coach immediately established bonds with the majority of his new Upolu Tribe.
Sharing his knowledge of Russian with Sophie. His faith and Christianity with Brandon. His being a Coach with Albert. (I can see Albert easily filling the role as Assistant Coach or Co Coach) Edna's kindness towards him built trust between them. Trust that could take her to F2/3 with him. He also has garnered respect with Rick who is a long time fan of the show.
All these social connections built relationships on a one to one level between each and established Coach's footing. With his natural tendency to lead; the next step of leadership occurred naturally.
Through Coach's abilities and leadership his tribe thrived. They ate well. They had shelter. Disagreements were handled and the spiritual aspect of prayer also helped at a crucial time as well. As I stated in my podcast interview..you could see the difference between both tribes at the Immunity Challenge. By merge Savaii was a train wreck and coming apart at the seams whereas Upolu was more unified and cohesive. Thanks to the leadership of Coach.
With each step post merge we all have seen how Coach can read strategies before they even occur. He knew the deal with Cochran/Ozzy. He knew the deal with Jim. He knows the deal with Dawn. Plus the teaser shows he even knows that Albert is up to something that could cost his game. Strategically I see Coach as playing human chess and thinking 2 moves ahead of everyone. I think he realizes that the people he is aligned with would try to pick now to challenge and take over. I think he's prepared for it. His argument may well be to take a Savaii member will cost a Upolu the game.
As it stands now Coach's only non variable is Brandon if there is any attempt. If Albert and Sophie were to lie and wait and work on Brandon to turn; then this is where Cochran fits in.
If Albert and Sophie were to attempt a change in ranks Coach's relationship and mentorship with Cochran could be his saving factor. Which is why Cochran sleeps between Coach and Edna. Plus another argument Coach can make is that anyone can beat him due to his returning player status. Thereby mute any attempt at any takeover. Bottom line Coach is playing SMART.
I have hope that his motto of Trust No One and Slay All (S20) will be in spades as this season winds down. Coach Wade just by making it this far with power has already out shone his two previous merges. With a complete Pagong of the Savaii Tribe looming on the landscape...it's very possible that Coach Wade not only has this season sewn up and that this will be his best season yet and the BIGGEST COMEBACK Of a Survivor to date! He has definitely been the best player this season from start to finish!
Which brings this weekly blog to it's conclusion for this week. This season has been amazing so far and think there's much more to come! Until next week...keep your torch lights lit and keep enjoying this season of Survivor South Pacific!
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