Australian Survivor week 6. That wasn’t a merge. This is a merge.

Am I seriously watching 4.5 hours of Survivor a week? What is wrong with me?

I picked this dog for the merge post because she sees everything around her as a threat.


This is a thing it didn’t occur to me beforehand to address, and I’m not sure I’ve been clear on the rules regarding posting things. So here’s the deal – I know we’re all watching this on different timelines, and I’m trying to accommodate everyone. If I haven’t posted about an episode yet (and posts will generally go up late evening, Eastern), use spoiler tags. If I have posted, it’s read at your own risk.

“Episode 15”

That was a merge, guys! Even if the result was a little underwhelming, there was a lot of great drama leading up to it, and, hopefully, the rest of the week isn’t just the pruning of Vavau.

We come in on Vavau, who are freaking out because seriously Vavau is fucked. They’re starving, there’s only three of them and one of them is completely bonkers. We cut from there straight to the auction. This feels weird to me because “envelopes full of auction cash” seems like a thing they’d have this group of people finally getting to do. But I guess what’s coming next made it irrelevant; it’s totally adorable watching them freak out over getting to the for-real merge.

We get an auction. Honestly the best part of this was my roommate’s reactions; she hasn’t seen an auction before and was absolutely dying during it. Conner wins food. Then Conner wins more food. Then other people win food. Then Lee wins an advantage for $80? Then Nick wins a covered item that turns out to be an advantage, and he’s really pissed off about it because he feels like having an advantage is going to hurt him the same way getting the idol clue did last time. Nick, the problem with last time wasn’t that you got an idol clue, it’s that you’re incapable of not looking like a total snake.

So, we get back to the beach, and it’s shocking how much I care about the dumb stuff we get at the merge when we don’t get it. No feast? No flag painting? Not even any discussion of the merge tribe name? Which is Fia Fia. Which is average for a merge tribe name.

Quickly we move into the individual part of the game. The question is whether Saanapu will stick together or not. Flick wants to target Conner, who she thinks flipped on her (Flick, I’m pretty sure that happened the other way.) There are a ton of shots of Flick looking shifty, and I’m curious if this means something. Sam, on the other hand, has doubts.

Immunity challenge: the hang from a pole challenge Terry Dietz won at the merge in Panama. There’s more gymnastics this time, thanks to Brooke and Kate. It reaches the point where they have to institute a rules change, making the remaining survivors hang by only one arm. Kristie doesn’t understand the rule and goes out quickly, then Kate falls, then Kylie gets confused about the rule, and Brooke wins a fairly ugly immunity necklace (clarification: I don’t think Brooke’s win was ugly, but I do think that immunity necklace is).

Back at camp, Sam waffles on the possibility of breaking up the Saanapu alliance. There’s a dumb thing involving friendship bracelets that may have happened earlier and I just don’t care because it’s so dumb. There’s also talk of targeting Nick because Nick is a fucking snake.

Lee goes off to read his advantage. He gets to cancel someone’s vote before it’s cast, which… I’m not even sure how this ranks on the scale of vote doubler and vampire vote. It’s probably not good that he has to tell someone that he gets to cancel their vote, but Lee can make it up on pure handsomeness.

Nick reads his advantage and it’s an idol clue. He runs off hunting like a madman. Lee catches him. Nick acts like they’re partners. Lee has a confessional where he’s aware that’s nonsense.

Tribal council is pretty exciting. I’m genuinely unsure how this is going to go, and the players are being pretty tight lipped. Jonathan blows up the dumb friendship bracelet alliance, which is fun. Then the votes come in and… 5 Conner, 4 Kate, with none of old Vavau on the same page. It kind of lets the wind out of the sails, but, as merges go, I’d still rate this a 6.

Discussion ponts:

  • Seriously, we got a lot of shots of Flick looking shady tonight. Is she going home soon, or does she just have the worst resting bitch face ever?
  • Nick – also, going home soon? He has an idol, do we expect him to screw this up?

“Episode 16”

Well that was a disappointing end to an exciting episode.

We come back from tribal council with old Saanapu feeling confident and in control, which they should, because what the hell is the rump of Vavau going to do unless something changes. Brooke and Flick are talking like the game is wrapped up. The only way this can go wrong is if people get weird ideas about the “right people” winning and someone is there who knows how to stoke that.

That’s actually unfair to what Kate does. Sure, she leans into Sam and Lee’s hesitation about keeping Nick around, but she also does a really good job of laying out the hierarchy of the merge tribe and why they’re not at the top of it. When she started I was prepped to roll my eyes because it felt overly complicated, but props to her, she got the message across. This was not Joe logic.

Then there’s a challenge super early, and it has to be for reward, right? No? It’s immunity? Immunity and reward? No? Just immunity? The pacing on these episodes is still off.

I don’t know how I feel about this challenge. It’s… different, which is cool, and in theory it’s a good way of including a big individual challenge early on without it taking too much time, but I dunno, this one did nothing for me. Watching people spin a ball around a hoop is somehow less interesting to me than balancing a ball on a paddle.

Back at camp things shift into action. Kate starts working on her plan to blindside Nick. Everything looks like it’s going well, until we get to the part where they have to bring Kylie in, and suddenly things go super weird. Early in the episode, Kylie looked completely down to change things up; she seemed to recognize she was on the bottom of old Saanapu and was willing to make things happen. Now, she’s immediately scampering off to tell on Sam to Brooke and Flick, and talking about how this cements her place with the core alliance. Kylie, honey, you are not in the core alliance. I don’t completely understand why, but people have been making it clear to you since day 4 that you are not in their plans. If 7th place is cool with you, fine; otherwise, there was nothing good about this.

Flick and Brooke get indignant at Sam, Sam does damage control, and I’m not sure what’s going to happen. Meanwhile Kate does a brilliant job of distracting Nick, who seems legitimately puzzled as to why she’s talking to him when it’s not his call.

At least we get a firecracker of a tribal council. After some initial hemming and hawing, Kate just goes all in and blows up the core alliance, while pointing the finger strongly at Nick. Nick goes into Nick defensive mode, which is hilarious because he’s so bad at seeming genuine. Sam straight up calls Nick a snake. Lee gets more and more exasperated. I get where Lee is coming from, since he’s not voting for Nick anyway for weird Lee reasons, but seriously, Sam, you are sending warning signals to the dude you want gone. Abort.

Nick gets the message and plays his idol. Turns out he doesn’t need to because 3 votes for Nick come in, then 6 for Kate and 2 for Sue. I’m not clued in enough to know whether Reddit is going to hate these people more for sending Kate home than if it had been Sue, but I’m still bummed about Phoebe.

Discussion points:

  • Do we think this alliance is getting split, or is this just a distraction from the fact that Vavau is getting wiped out?
  • Have we heard from Jennah-Louise since the merge? I don’t think she’s had a single confessional or any screen time at all. At points in this tribal council I would see her face and think “wait, who is that?”

“Episode 17”

So… let’s talk about Nick. This episode was confused and muddled, and a lot of it was about feelings, which are gross. And Nick was a huge presence this season, so huge his original tribe basically didn’t exist until they got rid of him. Plus, people have been saying smart things about him in the comments, not all of which I agree with, but which are worth addressing. So let’s make this one about Nick, who, for better or worse, was one of the stars of the season.

We come back to camp and Nick is livid. He goes of and vents about how he’s gonna get revenge on Sam and Lee for burning him. He does this in confessional, but I think this really highlights the essential problem with Nick: I don’t think he can hide this stuff when he gets back to camp. A dude like Todd goes off to vent, gets everything out, and comes back smiling and pretending he’s your best friend. Nick comes back stewing, and all of that weird intensity is just hanging around. Which just makes everyone else upset, which makes Nick more freaked out, and it turns into a toxic spiral. I don’t think he does it on purpose, but being around Nick all day every day looks exhausting.

The next day, everyone feels really bad about the beating Nick took at tribal, so it looks like he’s still in the majority. He has what look like productive discussions with Lee and Sam, with the former explaining to him that seriously he just needs to calm down. If Nick could do that, he would not be Nick.

Then there’s a challenge for letters from home that I’m gonna yadda yadda through, except to note that Kristie gives up her letter for Matt and El gives hers to Flick. This is not traditionally a thing that has been useful on Survivor, but Matt seems to solidly have Kristie’s back now, so good for her. There is so much crying. So, so much crying.

Then we get the old “hold on to a pole” immunity challenge seen on, I don’t know, like seven Survivors now? Which doesn’t matter, since it makes for a pretty good individual challenge. I’m not sure we’ve seen this variation before, where you get exterior rungs instead of interior indentations, and I wonder if that leads to the seriously six hours this challenge runs for. Brooke, who lost reward, ends up stepping down for her letter, and Kylie wins immunity.

I don’t understand anything after this point. Everyone is on board with voting off Nick, but there’s no explanation as to how the consensus shifted. Is placating Sam this important? Why? Can’t you just vote off Sam for being belligerent? Flick has a confessional where she admits this plan is not in her interest. She’s right. So… how did this happen? That would have been useful information.

The plan also involves putting two votes on Sue. Did anyone catch why this is a thing? All it seems to do is make this harder to pull off.

Nick for his part, is sort of scrambling, trying to make sure the vote is actually on Sue. Everyone is just yes-ing him, and he gets that this is a bad sign, but we also never see him do anything about it, which maybe is because he’s rehearsing the wicked speech he’s about to give at tribal council. (Seriously, he spent hours on that speech.)

Tribal council starts off super boring, until Nick manages to draw Jonathan’s attention with an eyeroll that couldn’t look more deliberate. He launches into his speech, Sam interrupts him to talk about how he shouldn’t be there, and things are blowing up. Nick outs the main alliances, and directly points out how Kylie is on the outs (seriously, Kylie, you are still not in a good place, please wake up.) Jennah-Louise goes unmentioned because it’s unclear if she’s still on the season.

The vote comes in and it’s a landslide for Nick. Lee and Matt vote for Sue, and I still don’t get why that’s a thing anyone thought was necessary. Nick is gone, and this season lost one of its most interesting wild cards.

Discussion points:

  • Purple Jennah watch: three episodes into the merge without a confessional from Purple Jenna.
  • Seriously, can someone explain why Lee and Matt had to put votes on Sue?


Sharculese first saw Survivor when his roommate wanted to watch Cagayan. He has now seen every season because he has a skewed sense of priorities.

Latest posts by Sharculese (see all)

140 thoughts on “Australian Survivor week 6. That wasn’t a merge. This is a merge.

  1. This dog is my parents’ dog Suzy, aka Boozy Suzy, aka Susan Bones Anthony. Isn’t she gorgeous? Doesn’t she look all soft and fluffy? Don’t try to touch her. She’s the worst, and she will bite you.

      1. No idea; she’s a rescue puppy. We were told Bernese mountain mix, but she grew up way too tall and slender for that, and anyway, the markings are all wrong. She looks like a black and tan English shepherd, but she’s way way too big for that to be all that’s going on. So maybe a cross of those two things.

    1. Wait, were you referencing Crocodile Dundee? Because nobody on the show did before Brooke in episode 16, or am I missing something?

  2. Wow, I just posted something on last weeks entry, so I’ll allow myself a copy-and-paste just this once:

    One non-spoilery note from the latest episode: Even though I would make some minor adjustments to my latest ranking after watching, I’m very happy with putting Nick at #1, as there was one little moment where I literally laughed out loud because of him (and he was great TV throughout the episode).
    If you have already seen it, you should know what I’m talking about, if not, you’ll know it when you see it!

    One more thought, this time a tiny bit more spoilery:The strategy of the large alliance, the attempts at scrambling from the other side and the way the vote shook out were a little bit frustrating (I really wanted to believe, that the show was trying to blindside the viewers this time), but overall the episode could be a great set-up for future happenings, and I’m excited for the things to come.

    1. I was really annoyed about the vote. Don’t try and get 6 together to beat the split then all vote a different fucking way.

  3. All these shots of Flick throughout, along with her prediction that Conner would go home in confessional, gave me hope that she would be the vote-out, even though Matt and Nick (to a lesser extent) were the only names that we heard being thrown around from that side. This, combined with Sam’s confessionals and the preview, is also what gives me hope, that things won’t go as planned for the large alliance.

    The problem I see is, that J-Lou and El seem to be fully assimilated into the big alliance, so with Matt, Brooke, Flick and Nick, that’s six already, so it won’t be easy to make a dent into that group. On the other hand, if Nick goes forward with questionable vote-split scenarios, there could lie their chance to get one over them. With perfect information for everybody as they had, this should have backfired already on their first try.

    It’s funny how Conner was labeled this big threat and master strategist from the blue tribe, but it’s actually a fair assumption to make, as he’s not even an original Vavau and still standing after all these tribals.

    1. In the preview LaPaglia was embracing the “good guys” label for Sam’s insurgent alliance. Based on everything we’ve seen about Australian Survivor, that makes me think it’s going to win out.

      1. True, but the season is still long, which offers opportunities for redemption, so pretty much everyone could end up on the good guys’ side (except for Flick and her mean-girl face).

      2. I really hope Sam doesn’t win because so far he seems like a big dumb puppy. I’d like to see this be Sue’s big move. GO SUE.

  4. Despite all of Sam, Matt and Lee agreeing about not trusting Nick, I didn’t get the vibe, that he is in immediate danger, so I think he should be good for a while. Of course he should be in danger, as Kate & Co. should ask Sam whom he wants out, if they want him to vote with them.

    Agreed, the merge scene was totes adorbs!

    I want to know whom exactly Lee told about his advantage. Has he told anyone at this point?

    What was Matt waiting for at the (bizarro-)auction?

    1. “What was Matt waiting for at the (bizarro-)auction?”

      I think it was letters from home. We went through every other Survivor auction thing, that was the only one that didn’t come up.

      1. That’s probably it, although it’s odd that he would save all his money for letters. Haven’t they seen Worlds Apart?

        1. Maybe he was terrified of not having money left for letters, or that LaPaglia wouldn’t go with that loophole?

          1. Good guess, but if he’s to be believed, that were not the reasons. But he was waiting for the letters:

            “Was waiting for letters from home. Didn’t need food, said to Vavau guys I wanted them to have it. I just needed to hear from my fiancé….”

            My reaction to accidentally buying letters from loved ones would be similiar to Lee’s reaction to getting an advantage (“got some paper”), so it somehow didn’t even enter my mind, that they were missing from the auction.
            I expected him to bid on the chocolate milk for sure, but Conner would have stopped that pretty quickly anyway.

    2. Why did no one ask “hey, Sammy, who do you want us to vote for?” or ask Kylie for that matter or fucking anyone who could flip. I’m assuming Sue has tried JL but if she hasn’t that’s dumb.

      1. I was surprised we didn’t see more of JL, expected her to be right in the middle of things. I get why she would want to tread lightly, if she has worked her way from the bottom to somewhere in the middle of the alliance, but we didn’t even get to see someone talk to her or have her tell us, what she’s thinking.

        The ineffectiveness of the minority alliance in approaching the fringe members of Saanapu was a real bummer. I loved Kate’s execution of Sue’s plan to pull at Kristie’s heartstrings, but even that appeared to be the wrong approach, or maybe Kristie wanted to vote with them but didn’t, when she knew the numbers were not there.

        It seems there was a moment of realization at some point, or else there’s really no excuse for not voting together and going for 1 vote Kylie, 1 Matt and 1 Nick instead.

  5. This community is so perfect. I went to /r/survivor and read the post episode discussion thread and it’s fucking nuts. People hate Flick and Brooke (LOVELY BROOKE) with a passion and are calling Sam a dick and are so upset with Kristie and Kylie for voting with majority and seem to be really buying this whole “good guys” thing. So strange. I finally understood what it would have been like to see the world hate Jerri Manthey for no reason. Glad to see we aren’t irrationally hating people here. Anyways, decent episode. The brightest stars of the show are gone unfortunately, but I’m kind of glad Conner went home. Hoping a power shift comes and then Brooke takes the power back and the whole game with her.

    1. Thanks. I try to always keep in mind that we’re getting, at best, 2-dimensional representations of 3-dimensional people and be fair about what I’m doing, but I’ll also acknowledge who I think the show is telling us to dislike and/or write off, and I think, right now, Flick is getting set up as a villain. I also think the auction confirmed that this is a much nicer show than American Survivor, one where villainy is not going to be rewarded. So, I’m not high on her chances right now, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to act like she’s not a people.

      1. Yeah, they seemed pretty happy for each other at the auction overall, other than Nick and Matt (which I touched on already) and possibly Flick to Sue. Did she say “I hope it’s nothing good” to Brooke, when Nick was outbidden by Sue, or did she say “something good” – did anybody hear that?
        If it’s the former, that’s another puzzle-piece to her villain-edit’s come about.

      2. Flick is definitely getting set up as the villain which I find interesting. I wonder if Brooke can squeak by as Flick goes down. For once I’m not rooting for the underdog because I don’t really care for Kate or Kristie and I don’t want to see Lee and Sam go far on mateship, if they go far I need them to do some serious flipping and not get framed as them being good guys and flipping on the bad guys. because if you flip on your strong alliance to further yourself you aren’t “the good guy”. The Saanapu alliance isn’t full of bullies and racists, it’s just a bunch of people who have been in control for a while.

    2. The only thing that irked me was their continued denial of the existence of an alliance at Tribal. I know it’s technically the correct play, but it just comes across as condescending. You wore bracelets for crissakes, you don’t have to be coy!

      1. I would have collapsed in a pool of paranoia about the bracelets. If I accept one am I making myself a target? If I turn one down am I making myself a target? What does it mean that Kristie has one? Do the bracelets signify an alliance? Are the bracelets a smokescreen obscuring the true alliance?

        Was it Brooke who thought of the bracelets? It was probably just a way to kill time on the island, but if not, man that is some next-level mind-fucking.

        1. Agreed, once they were brought into play it is really hard to deal with the idea as a player, and it probably started as an inncocent way to kill time rather than a stroke of evil genius, but during all the weaving and putting them on people’s wrists, everyone must have felt more and more uneasy about the whole thing (or aware of the potential effects), but once it started, you can’t do much about it as an individual.

          Is there anyone who took notes and can give the split? I want to know everyone who got one, if people who didn’t have one at tribal got one but took it off later on, were never offered one, were offered one but refused it, or couldn’t get one because they were not a priority and the bracelet production ran out of pink cloth! I don’t think it ended up being as easy as pink bracelet = core alliance.

          JL for example didn’t have one if I remember correctly, which doesn’t make too much sense, and I think Lee at some point had one but didn’t raise his hand when asked at tribal.

          There was also an off-camera comment when Kristie got hers, a femal voice uttered “the aggressive Seven”, but I don’t know who said it. Could have been Brooke, but also Kate.
          If it was Brooke or Flick, that would make it looke like more of a conscious move to lock down easily susceptible numbers on the fringe.

    3. Stephen and Rob are going to be proud of Brooke for nibbing Conner’s pathetic attempts at scrambling in the bud.

      Not gonna lie, I miss him already and am heartbroken for Kate, who lost her trusted friend. They were soo cute together.

    4. I generally don’t like anyone standing in the way of Nick. That flop sweaty nervous little snake is by far my favorite. I generally watch Survivor rooting against anyone at the top, where Flick and Brooke have been all game, so I’m a little fatigued with them.

      1. He’s not my favorite, but he’s my favorite thing on TV right now, so I also don’t want to move anyone against him at this point. I’m afraid that it comes down to a vote between him and Vavau’s last chance to gain footing in the post-merge soon, at which point I wouldn’t even know what I want to happen.
        Agreed, the tide turning on Brooke and Flick, or even better, against the original trainwreck of a tribe that was Aganoa, would be a real ease for my heart.

        By the way, you’re doing a great job!

    5. I was totally rooting for Sam not to flip on them (and especially worried about Nick). This “good guys alliance” sounds incredibly boring.

  6. The auction was like taking a time machine back in time to a point where the auction wasn’t completely busted. And poor Sam was looking like a confused golden retriever when everyone else knew they were merging. But seriously if you’re Conner and you know you’re merging and you’re on the bottom in a minority and you blow your wad on food?! Kate too. I get it, you’re hungry as all hell. But Jonathan announces an advantage and … silence.

    I was hoping Nick would pull a badass move like tossing the clue in the fire in front of everyone. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad he found the idol but it did not come without a significant cost in the form of getting caught by Lee. He does not have a lot of friends on that alliance.

    1. Kate blew hers after the advantage. She should have blown it on the advantage but I get that they haven’t eaten in ages and the rest are well fed from rewards,

      1. I wonder if they knew there woudn’t be a merge feast. The auction in itself was a pretty good give-away that there would be no feast, but it’s still so unusual.

        It seems like the four Vavaus should have gone for the advantage regardless of what people think that would do to their backs, but that exchange at Vavau camp before the merge reminded us just how weakened and hungry they are, so it’s a tough call. Still, Kate should have tried to see if she can get it on the cheap and still have money left to hopefully get some food.

    2. Yes and no. When they were bidding aggressively on the food I was thinking it was super old school too, but Nick’s reaction made me think that the superfans among the players (and I don’t think Lee is one) absolutely do not want to receive an advantage publicly. So maybe if they ever do the auction on US Survivor again it will be un-broken.

      1. But if you’re Conner or Kate, it doesn’t matter that openly vying for an advantage puts a target on your back. You already have a huge target, so you have nothing to lose. Those were the two I was primarily disappointed in; I can understand those in the majority focusing on food. Perhaps since the auction happened before they had a chance to interact as a merged tribe those two thought they’d have some chance to assemble allies, but it still seems like an awfully long shot.

  7. I just checked in to see if they got more Hungry Jack’s, because good god are they pushing that advertising. Evidently failing to realise that those of us who actually know about Survivor would avoid most of the menu in a Survivor scenario.

  8. How did everyone there think Conner was a big threat? yeah, he’s a sweet kid but he showed 0 strategic chops.

    1. People liking you makes you a threat, absolutely. They got push back from like 3 or 4 people that didn’t want to vote for Conner. They also probably think of the 3 or 4 people on the outs he is the most likely to win a challenge.

        1. Of those 4, yes he was. MAYBE I could hear an argument for Kate, but not Sue or Kristie. THese people don’t seem to have the chops to start whittling down the 9 just yet anyhow.

          1. I suppose of the 4 but day that. I think its just them doing the thing contestants do to rationalise vote.

      1. Yes, he was so liked that the plan almost blew up on their faces. He was pretty close to unvoteable, and that was a couple of days after merge. Try taking him out after he had a chance to have a long talk with Sam and other people.

    2. The CEO made some good points already on Conner being a low-key threat, but as for Flick calling him the best strategist in the game (or sth. to that effect), it’s probably a combination of her remembering that one time back in Old Saanapu, when introducing him as secondary target, in case of an idol play, to the allliance almost blew up in her face, and the fact that he survived every Vavau TC ever since must have looked really impressive from afar. So while I spit out my coffee at first, I can see where she’s coming from.

      1. First vote is not time for “low key threats” first merge boot should be physical or strategical threats. Get rid of people who could actually do you damage then get the nice guys who could beat you.

  9. I’m still on episode 2 and trying to dodge spoilers, but I just had to come here and do a Ctrl+F “Simpsons” search. You guys are letting Sharculese down by not taking the obvious knifey/spooney bait.

    Hope to catch up soon. Though the heartache of losing Bianca has somewhat dulled my enthusiasm.

    1. Bianca was an incredible episode 2 boot. The best thing you can have in the first four or five episodes is inept villains with tons of unearned self-regard kicking themselves in the ass. If Bianca had stuck around she would have been boring as fuck. But she made for a great short storyline.

  10. Okay, so it’s like almost 6 and I’m not seeing any spoiler tagged posts. Is nobody else finding ep 16 either?

    Also, fyi, at this point I don’t have time to do a writeup before I go to work, and I won’t be home before 11:30.

    1. I know, right? It could be a decent move for her standing in the game, but now the she’s sure to be even less popular in the public, than on her tribe.

      I didn’t mind Kate introducing this “get the good guys together” mantra last episode and I still think it’s fine that she uses it to save her ass, but I got really annoyed over the course of the episode by all the people, who bought into it.
      Poor Nick gets treated even worse than Kylie by some of his tribemates, who are basically saying they are better than him, without telling him what he could do about their perception of him. You really have to feel for this guy (as long as he’s not talking to his old tribemates about that time they voted him out of Vavau)!

      1. I don’t think it even really improved her standing in the game. It maybe means an extra round or two, but that group isn’t suddenly gonna decide to pull her into the fold because she tattled on Sam. She’s still just a number to them.

        All of the “good guys” talk meant I was making a lot of Marquesas comparisons during this episode, but what we saw from Kylie was basically like if Neleh had realized she was coming in fifth and said, “I’m good with that.”

        1. I think Kylie has bumped herself up a couple of spots but no higher than 6th. I think Flick and Brooke may realise that she is loyal to them and all they have to do is show her a little kindness (not even much) and she’s a number for them til they decide she’s not. If they are as smart as I think they are, there is a good chance they use her when they eventually want to get rid of Sam and Lee which should be before top 5 because if you go to top4 with Sam or Lee they could well win immunity and then win the game.

          1. They should probably go after Sam and Lee right after the other two Vavaus, even though I don’t see anyone going on an extended immunity run, as most of the people left appear to be competitive in challenges. That would bring them (Flick and Brooke) to seven with El, Kylie, JL, Matt and Nick to choose from to mix and match their way to the finale. It seems like every single one of them has a better working relationship with Brooke and Flick than among each other, so that seems like their best path going forward.
            I could easily see Kylie getting dragged along until final four, and who knows, she could win one or two immunities, to get to the end, or maybe one of El, Kylie and whoever is left at final 5 grows some balls and spearheads a move against Fooke.

            So there are ways how this could turn out to be a worthwile move for Kylie, despite it not exactly working as planned here.

        2. It’s impossible to say how flipping (can you flip from an alliance that never wanted you in the first place) would have turned out for her with so many moving parts, but I still have to disagree with that, as I think what she did should give her a better chance moving forward. There may be about 3-4 people who consider themselves final three and will be hard to flip (Brooke, Flick, El, Matt), but in theory putting together a counter alliance and using it to get to FTC should be much easier at final 7 or 9 than at 12. So it’s important, to make sure you’re not at the low end of the pecking order to get there, because you can’t expect to make moves that get you to the end on day 33 with 12 people still left in the game.
          It’s a common complaint among Survivor fans, to rip into players who seem not to be in the endgame plans of their alliance, if they’re not doing something about it right now. Most of the time that seems to stem more from the understandable desire for better television, than actual analysis of gameplay, similiar to the ridicule UTR-players have to endure all the time. (Of course, I’m not different, I want an exciting season more than I want everybody to make always the correct moves. I try to distinguish between the two and probably fail to do so from time to time.)
          If I’m not mistaken, she actually tried to thread the needle on that vote, as she wanted to create a 5-5-2 scenario, where she would switch her vote on the revote, in case Nick didn’t play his idol. For that to happen, she needed one more vote against Nick on the revote, to break the tie.
          That’s not huge hurdle though, as it would be a risk-free opportunity to get rid of the idol-holding person, that nobody trusts anyway, while the “good guys” could be expected to stand fast.
          She also didn’t want to blindside (the top of) her alliance, while still giving the good guys, what they want. She wanted her cake and eat it too, but that didn’t happen, as Flick and Brooke called an emergency meeting of the former core alliance, where Lee was told vote Kate as well, meaning we got a 6-4-2 vote. It’s not clear to me if Fooke would have actually preferred to get Nick and his idol out and fooked up here, or if they still wanted Kate gone at this point. Either way, although TC was a mess, from their perspective you can’t complain about the result too much.

          It’s possible that I give Kylie way too much credit, btw she really got on my nerves this episode, but the longer I think about it, the better I feel about my assessment, that she was playing it pretty well here.

          1. Completely agree. No matter what Probst says, you don’t win Survivor by making Big Moves™, but by making big moves at the right moment. I’m almost certain people like Kylie and JL know full well they’re not in the core 3-4, but are waiting until the group is at a manageable number to mount a counter-alliance.

          2. Here’s the thing: If I thought Kylie had those kind of thoughts in her head, I would give her more credit. I just think she’s completely unaware of how much ground she has to make up, which is weird because everyone’s been making it clear to her for the whole game.

          3. I didn’t expect her to have much of a strategic mind myself, so her explanation went a little bit over my head the first time, but when I watched that scene again (right after the first time- it was also edited weirdly), she pretty much laid it all out there and, to my surprise, made complete sense to me.

            Good for her, her social game is atrocious, so she really needs to strategize to have an impact on the game, and now she’s finally in a position to do so. People don’t seem willing to work with her, if they don’t have to, so she tried to put herself in a position, where both sides have some level of trust in her and thus would be more willing to work with her.

      2. Also, as to Nick, of course the moral stuff is stupid, but I understand why he’s in the position he’s in way more than I get with Kylie. With her, I get that they don’t really like her for some reason, but it’s not at all clear why. With Nick, it makes more sense. I don’t think it’s his personality; I think it’s something that has to do with how Survivor works.

        it’s not universal, but one of the most common qualities you see in winners is that they have the ability to calm other people down and make them take their mind off the stress of the game. Nick is like the opposite of that. He’s playing with such an intensity that he can’t be anything but a reminder that you’re playing Survivor. Even the most ardent superfans want a break from the game. You don’t get that with Nick there.

        And I don’t think he helped himself here. Going out and finding an idol was just a reminder to the rest of the tribe how hard Nick is playing, and I don’t think they want to think about that. He either needed to not find the idol, tell everyone about the idol, or save it until it was obvious he needed it. This measure only made voting him out more tempting.

        1. Totally agree, a calm aura is one of , if not the most important qualities of a good contestant (insert Vlachos-exception here), and dude has no chill, so it’s no wonder people don’t want him around and think he comes off snake-ish.

          I was just pointing out how cruel that experience must be from his perspective. He and Lee planned to inform their alliance (the show should have really gone through with that and told us, if and who did get informed by whom, as it seems quite important), and in his mind he didn’t do much wrong on his old tribe and certainly was nothing but a loyal member to his alliance since he is on Saanapu, yet here he is being accused of being a snake out of nowhere (I laughed so hard when they showed his reaction to that).
          Even worse, all these high and mighty good people are touting mateship, honour and integrity and are telling him he can’t live up to these standards, just by way of his personality, disregarding his actions.

          For people that are so much into this ‘we’re all mates”-thing, they sure brought a lot of conflict and mistrust into the camp by calling him out like that. Where there were friendly relations among most of the camp before, albeit hampered by a rather transparent pecking order, there are now sure to be cold-war like conditions (or even straight up isolation of a single person).

  11. I didn’t have a smooth way to include this in the main post, but my roommate asked me to bring this up, so I’ll throw it to the comments: when the good guys were trying to pull Kristie aside, she turned to me and said “I feel like Kristie just generally isn’t used to being included in things, and that’s gonna drive a lot of her decision making here.”

    Which I don’t think is necessarily wrong, I said as much about Denise Martin when I was picking the most useless players, but, interestingly, she votes for Nick tonight, rather than going with the Pink Bracelets. Anyone have thoughts on that?

    1. Well, you are wrong about a crucial point here, SAM went through with it and wrote NIck’s name down. Nick caught 4 votes there, and you can even see his face fall when the 4th came up. Those 4 may have even thought they had the votes to pull it off before the idol, expecting Lee and Kylie to come along. Or maybe Sam was made to realize he is now persona non grata in the alliance after Kylie tattled on him, and threw in his vote with the losing side because he might as well, if that’s where he’s gonna be now. I think that last scenario may be the most likely.

      Also, this is only the second vote she hasn’t been correct with, the other being Kat’s ouster. Unless you count the Phoebe idols different.

      1. Sam and Kristie both voted with the majority in the merge-episode, and voted Nick on Monday. Were you saying Kristie wasn’t, or did you mix her up with Kylie?

        1. Kristie only voted for who didn’t go home on the kat vote and kate vote, was what I’m saying. Not sure if that answered the question.

          1. It did, I thought you were referring to the votes at the ep16 TC only, when you said Sharc missed a crucial point. My bad!

    2. I think Kristie gave a solid reason why she’s floating. She knows she;s currently low on the totem pole and feels if she floats people will find her vote useful. I feel like there is something to that. if Flick/El/Brooke are annoyed enough at Sam for trying this Kristie becomes valuable. Lee likes her in a big brothery way and I think Flick and Brooke probably feel they can use her. I do think the 9 will start a war before they get both Sue and Kristie out, probably Sue goes today and then it becomes interesting.

      1. I agree. I think it’s highly likely that one more old Vavau goes in episode 17, probably Sue (although it’s impressive how she manages to cling to the cliff’s edge), but after that, I think breaking up the Flick/Brooke/El Triforce will become the higher priority. The likes of JL and Kylie have to know that they’re outside the core alliance, and that once they’re down to 10 there won’t be many chances to take down an alliance of three plus, say, Lee. Whoever’s left from Vavau (let’s assume Kristie) could very well be in the Chris Daughtry position in the game, floating along seemingly without any power while everybody else rips themselves apart. For the same reason, Nick might actually be safe for a few rounds.

        1. I’d say JL will but Kylie isn’t up for something big, she wants both sides and be see her as having integrity.

    3. I think that’s a good point, but who knows if she got included on much more than just the bracelet thing, and Sam and Lee included her in their very secret plans and have the added benefit of dreamy eyes and muscular bodies, while also offering the opportunity to keep two familiar faces in Sue and Kate a little longer.

  12. I’m going Black Dynamite and going to power rank the players based on how I see their chances to win and the quality of game they have played (and also personal animosity).
    2. Brooke
    3.El (I don’t think she’s playing great but she’s in with the power and is an Army Corporal single mum).
    4. Matt
    5. JL
    6. Lee
    7. Sam
    8. Kylie
    9. Kristie
    10. Sue
    11. Nick (poor Nick will never win, he’s far too intense and people have decided he’s a terrible person despite being perfectly nice since he was swapped).

    1. I’m guessing Sam is above Kylie/Kristie/Sue because of chances to win, which I agree with but it’s a shame because I think he’s pretty bad. He might as well have told Nick to play his idol at tribal.

      1. I actually really hate him based on his stupid need to play with integrity. This isn’t Survivor Australia this is Australian Survivor!

    2. Hmm, difficult list to rate, as all of the Vavaus have it much tougher now and had many more opportunities to make mistakes, so they are really long shots in terms of winning, while they didn’t really play bad games.

      Sue for example would be golden with her loyalty-based game on Saanapu, but it really hurts her as part of the minority group.
      Kristie’s ability to survive votes and move forward was pretty impressive, but since ep12 she’s the walking dead girl, and has a long way to float to the top. Still, I kind of agree with MJ and would place Sam behind that trio.

      Maybe I would also flip Brooke and Flick, and I’d probably put El at #1 for having almost the same win equity (by the way of more options) with a slightly more difficult path to get to where she is now. Still hate her boring ass, though.

      Poor Nick is toast based on having no chill alone.

      Other than that, and apart from the fact that I think it’s impossible to combine these criteria and come up with a coherent list, I concur. ;-b

      1. I guess it’s really a tiered system that has FLick/Brooke/El tier One. Matt to Sam Tier two and everyone else tier 3.

      2. Little late to the party on this, but I really think El is playing a better game than we are necessarily seeing. Her chat with Nick to calm him down the morning after in Ep.16 showed a lot of compassion and good people-management skills that remind me a bit of Kim and/or Denise. Sure her game may seem boring to watch, but I think (at least socially), she’s a bit of a threat.
        Note: I’ve only been watching sporadically so if she’s been a colossal dumpster-fire in other episodes then I take everything back!

        1. No, she hasn’t shit the bed in prior episodes (she might have, but we didn’t see any of it), in fact the little she does seems to be to her advantage (like hanging with the girls after the swap and talking Kristie off the ledge in an early episode), but we also didn’t see anything from her, that would justify such lofty comparisons at this point, imho.
          Sure, she isn’t freaking people out with wild strategy-talk and appears to connect really well with people (at least with those, she makes an effort with), but I don’t think I heard her voice even a single independent thought through 17 episodes. Her slow approach by all accounts lends itself really well to this 55-day version of the game, but at some point you have to see through other people’s games and should be able to create your own endgame-path to success. Fortunately, I don’t think she is anything more than a follower and can’t imagine that she would be able to do that in a convincing fashion.
          I’m still worried that what she offers could prove to be enough to win this iteration of Survivor, though, as I hinted at above. She certainly doesn’t appear to be in immediate danger, and I cannot imagine that she will be anytime soon, even if the game flipped today.

          1. Oh that’s a shame. I seem to have only watched the episodes where her social game seems to be displayed (I did see that talking to Kristie bit) and missed all the ones where she does nothing. Here’s hoping she can start playing her own game, so to speak, and that way if she does win she won’t be as much of a Michele type winner.


    So this seems like a pretty bad play for Brooke/Flick/El to me. They know they are at the top of the alliance, and they know that Nick is public enemy number one for the people on the periphery of the alliance. NIck is with them out of necessity for the foreseeable future. Plus, Sam and Lee gunning for Nick keeps the target off your back as long as Nick is still there as a shield. You prune Sue and Kristie off, and tell Sam and Lee that Nick’s gone at nine. Then you decide there if Nick is really a snake, or if it’s time to get rid of the burly men.

    But they have now let Sam steer a vote, your power no longer seems absolute, and you lost a loyal number. Great going, girls.

    A ‘Snake’ is no threat if no one will go along with any snake-like plans. All he’s been doing is getting rid of Vavaus. Even if he somehow gets to the end no one likes him. But now he has accurately described the state of the game, going-against-the-alliance genie is out of the bottle, and now people might realize they gotta break up some tight triads.

    1. also I fully agree with you. This was a bad call, take out Sue here, Kristie seems like she’ll go with whoever which isn’t a great quality as she has links with Lee. Nick has NO connections beyond Flick/Brooke and they should be trying much harder to keep him. I felt Sam’s attitude towards Nick was pretty harsh to be honest, he doesn’t seem like the brightest bulb and he’s allowed people’s stories about Nick from Vavau to poison him, Nick hasn’t done anything bad in the game and nothing to Sam to warrant the level of vitriol he spewed. I really don’t think he can qualify as a good guy now. I don’t enjoy people who try to play with integry because they are usually no fun to watch but what I hate most is people who unironically talk about playing with honour and integrity who then treat other players like shit. Yeah I get players have to vilify who they are voting for to make it easier to do but this went beyond that for me.
      I think tonight was the vote to go for Sam, you know Nick would have, I think Kristie and Sue would have said yes so with Flick, Brooke and El you’ve got 6 and you could probably have got JL and Matt too.

      1. I agree with everything you wrote here (and did so in many more words above and below)!
        I didn’t want to lose either Sue or Nick (although I’m pretty much resigned to Sue going for a while now), but having that Sam option dangled in front of us (edit: that’s where the girls seemed to be leaning anyhow) and then have him and his hypocrisy succeed in getting my favorite out, is tough. (Yes, he managed to become my favorite on his boot episode, or the one before. Not the first time that happened with AU Survivor, the show does pretty good that way!)

        The edit didn’t even really present an alternative by the time everyone showed up at tribal council. By then, it was obvious it’s not going to be Sam, and we barely heard from Sue all episode, so the doubt that comes with Sam masterminding a vote-split, was a rather weak one.

        At least he went out in a blaze of glory!

      2. I get the dislike for Sam, he is also my least favorite character there now, but taking him out would be a terrible move, in my opinion. Nick is a very peripheral member of the alliance, no one really likes him, so taking him out is not such a big deal. But Sam, on the contrary, is a core member. I believe that blindsiding him would be to effectively end the alliance. And then the 3 girls + Nick and possibly Matt would probably be on the losing end of the resulting chaos.

        1. I think they could talk Lee into Sam going behind their (the rest of the alliances) backs and that not being loyal or trustworthy. They would have 5 with Matt, 6 with Lee. I think they could scoop up Kristie. That’s still a majority.

          1. I think they are friends but I think Lee believes his original word has to be stuck to. His original alliance is with El not Sam. He wouldn’t vote for Nick in the second episode of the week because he gave his word. I really think the girls could play on that.

    2. I agree with everything you said about Nick’s position in the game and that losing him hurts the core girls (the fact that he is, at least on paper, the perfect ally for them was even discussed here back on the Tegan vote-out after the first swap, and not much has changed since). They should have explored every avenue to keep him, but I also think, that they would be right to back off, if the public demand for his ouster becomes too big. And having a vote, that makes it seem like they’re not dictating the entire boot order could also help their game, if it means that people don’t see the immediate need to act against them or are not concerned enough to listen to people, who look for numbers to do that. For example, I imagine this vote makes Sam feel good about his position in the game for a while.
      It’s hard to tell if it was necessary. If they want to cut the burly men soon anyway (as I think they should), they should have probably pushed harder against it (or pushed against it at all), but if they seem themselves + Lee + Sam as final five, it could turn out worthwhile.

      1. you make a great point that they can sort of point to this as “hey, we didn’t want to vote out Nick, we clearly aren’t in charge”

        1. Plausible deniability is one aspect, but I think not being seen as the reason, the person you see as unworthy to be playing with you is still in the game, is just as important.
          It amazed me during RI that Rob’s insistence on keeping Phillip around didn’t backfire on him, but he made it work somehow.

      2. Exactly, I don’t think they wanted at all to take Nick out. But if they changed the vote, they would be putting a huge target on their backs, as it would be even clearer for everyone that they are running this game.

  14. So they finally got Nick, it became a bit like bullying by the end from Sam, I was actually thinking about it a bit on my walk home from work and I wonder how much of it was macho man bullshit? Nick is clearly not a jock, he’s a sensitive smart man and I’ve noticed in life that guys like that do threaten meatheads.
    Anyway terrible decision to make this move from the women of Sanaapu, Nick was 100% loyal to you.
    I’d also like to talk edit, I’m starting to think Lee is at least top 5, the focus on him in challanges he loses is too much if he isn’t going deep. Maybe a long immunity run that ends in failure, maybe he Mike Holloway’s it without being disliked. As always finding this really enjoyable, I know Rob and Stephen complain about 3 episodes a week but they have to podcast it, for me this is my prefered viewing style, I think Survivor is best binge watched and having 3 episodes a week and a thousand days of competition suits me perfectly

    1. I’m bummed that the women didn’t take out Sue, because I am all in on Brooke right now. The best part of the episode was definitely watching Sam’s face fall when he realized that Nick would be on the jury. Woops!

      1. I like Sue, she’s a salty old broad and that is enjoyable but I’d have liked to see Flick and Brooke say “Sammy, you done fucked up, time to go”. Basically I really hate Sam and his dumb tattoo and the fact he calls him mum “big girl”.

        1. Oh, for sure! I was hoping the whole episode that a plan to take out Sam would emerge. I actually love Sue, but with her being the only alternative boot presented by the edit I was rooting for it to happen.

          1. I think the problem was, that Brooke told us out of nowhere that she considers Sam her closest ally, despite not voting with her last episode. Wtf, where did that come from? And if she really goes after Magic Matt next week, who, as an aIly from day one and throughout the game, I think she should also hold in higher esteem, she’s dead to me!
            But the edit absolutely loves her for weeks now, fwiw.

    2. I don’t know about Lee (other than I kind of like him, despite my best intentions and him voting Nick out. That would suggest the editors at least care for him, other than Sam, who I can’t imagine even the Australian public is supposed to be on board with at this point. He’s almost comical by now, in how much he dislikes Nick, who was humanized again tonight, and his inability to formulate reasons for it),
      but what is going on with JL? She has to end up on the wrong side of an idol play, or even be a quitter, given how invisible she has been. I think the last time we heard from her was right after the “first merge”, and that now seems to have been as much about Nick’s grudge-arc (that is still ongoing…they couldn’t take that from us!) as about her. Sue is also criminally underused, but with her it could be that editors just feel she’s best served in small doses, which I would disagree with.

      I’m not sure how serious Rob’s and Stephen’s complaints should be taken, they still seem to have a lot of fun discussing it. It certainly is tough on their schedule, but I imagine that gets better now, that his BB coverage is done for the season.

      1. Edit wise: Lee is going far right? He’s been focused on so heavily. I’m starting to see Brooke as the most likely of the women to win.
        The issue is we don’t know what falls into the stories that are popular culturally in Australia and what is a winners edit.

        1. About Lee: Honestly, no idea, I didn’t notice it as much as you did.

          Brooke clearly is the female frontrunner at this point. She’s shown as the leader of the girls alliance, but is still portrayed very positive and although we see her quite often, it’s not like she’s shoved down our throats, so you have to feel pretty good about her.

          Flick: Started to get a villain edit this week, but in ep17 she appeared to be really nice and wasn’t shown mean-mugging anymore, so what was that all about?

          Sam: True, we cannot know what an Australian winner’s edit looks like and while I expect, from all I’ve heard, that all this mateship and honourability plays well with the general audience, I cannot fathom that the editors are not purposefully painting him in an unfavourable light.
          He comes off as a huge hypocrite, highlighted by their efforts to humanize Nick again and have him talk or respond to Sam on multiple occasions, and like a pretty big idiot on top of that. He was shown to have trouble to organize a vote split and watching him struggle to verbalize his thoughts in some scenes was almost painful. Cultural differences can’t make up for that, can they?

          1. Lee gets heavy focus in challenges even though he’s not won a single one.
            Flick: I think it’s the mean girl narrative. She’s a strong woman who is powerful in the game, I think that often leads to a bitch perception.
            Sam: I hope cultural differences don’t make up for it. I really really hope not.

    3. I know Rob and Stephen complain about 3 episodes a week but they have to podcast it, for me this is my prefered viewing style,

      And they only have to do it once a week. Seriously, I love doing this, but, if Australian Survivor happens again, I would be up for trading episodes with you as co-hosts.

      1. That is an arrangement I could get behind. I can imagine 3 write ups a week is tough. I find 3 episodes as a viewer quite fun but that might change now TV season has opened.

  15. A meta comment: I think we should establish a rule that when posting a post with spoiler tag, to almost say in the beginning (not in spoiler) what episode one is talking about. It is really confusing to come here having watched 2 episodes of the week, and not know which spoilers are regarding the second episode and which ones are about the third.

    1. This is sensible, I’ll bring it up in next week’s post. I’m writing the ep 17 recap right now, so it’s about to become irrelevant for this week.

  16. Episode 17 recap is posted, so we’re clear for the week. Gonna implement tocantins’ rule change on spoilers for next week.

    1. “Brooke, who lost reward, ends up stepping down for her letter, and Purple Jennah wins immunity.” Purple Jennah dropped out 3rd last. Brooke stepped down and allowed Kylie to claim immunity.

  17. Question for those who’ve watched more American Survivor than I have: Are people usually this emotionally exhausted by this point in the game or is the longer Australian schedule having an impact?

    1. In American Survivor this is 4 days from the end of the game. Yes they usually are this exhausted but can also see the end in sight.

      1. I’m a little worried from this point forward. We’re about to enter uncharted territory in terms of the length of the game. Nobody appears to be truly starving, but the mental toll is pretty obvious. The 43-minute American Survivor episodes seems rushed to me, so these super-long episodes have been fine with me so far, but with fewer and fewer players I’m worried that we’re going to get more and more filler. The letters from home scene was really the first time I was bored stiff. And to make matters worse for the end game, they’ve voted out the people playing the hardest.

        1. Me too, are we going to see the game fizzle out? will people get bored of it?
          I said in another comment that this is my prefered way of watching Survivor, with multiple episodes close together, it more closely matches the bingeing if it that I so enjoy. I could do with few non-elimination episodes but I like an hour + of it 3 times a week.

  18. 2 votes on Sue in case Nick gets another idol. I guess the point is 2 votes seems like too few? They have a weirdly large majority voting block here and I think some are worried that Nick might be saved if they split it more evenly. Jennah Louise’s recent edit is really unfortunate. I really liked her in the pre-merge. They also set up Nick vs Jennah back in the day, and we don’t even get word from her about his elimination! There are some odd storytelling choices in this version.

    1. If anything I feel like JL should be thanking Nick for choosing her to be a part of Ultimate Hand-Picked Uber-Tribe That Never Loses. That’s certainly not how it felt at the time, nor was it his intention, but he definitely helped out her game big time. I always thought he should have pitched that interpretation to her when they had their little talk, as a way of mollifying her hurt feelings. “I know you think I screwed you here, but on the other hand, look at the tribe you’re on and tell me you don’t feel good about our chances.”

    2. That’s how I took it as well, protection against an idol, but they didn’t think they needed to split more evenly (because nobody is working with Sue) and were more worried, that Nick gets saved by confusion about who everyone should vote or even him convincing a few Nick-votes to vote Sue instead.
      J-Lou got a little bit more camera-focus this tribal, so I guess that was as much conclusion to that storyline, as they were willing to grant her. As I said in another post, it’s possible that storyline is much more about Nick holding grudges, and with him on the Jury, still going on. Agreed, it’s really unfortunate, I had high hopes for her in the post-merge, too.

  19. About your questions: the votes for Sue were in the really small chance that he had a second idol (and in the end, why not? They have like 10 votes on Nick).

    And there was no shift, from the beginning Nick knew that he had to win immunity. Sam wanted him out really bad, and Nick simply didn’t have anyone allied with him close enough (or that even liked him enough) to stick their neck out for him, even a little bit. So why not please a core alliance member?

    1. They made it seem like there was sort of a switch, as we were shown Flick and El being mad about Sam after tribal, but I suppose that scene with Brooke and Sam was there to show us, that they are not splitting up, even though Sam did a horrible job of explaining himself and in reassuring Brooke.

  20. Wow, the episode 17 tribal was completely incoherent. I think they threw in every red herring they could find in order to obscure what was a very likely outcome all along, and in doing so neglected to give any shape to the narrative.

    Purple Jennah: I don’t get it. Maybe she’s adopted the Danni Boatwright confessional strategy.

    Kristie: Definitely seeing Chris Daughtry upside now, depending on how old Sunaapu fractures.

    1. We, rightfully joke about Survivor: I’d Like to Give up My Reward, but it’s worth remembering that the first time Natalie A. did it paid major dividends. Building a relationship with Baylor and cementing Missy’s trust are things she probably couldn’t have won without.

      1. It can work but I do feel it will never work if you are the obvious target like Jeremy. It can work if you are Kristie who is at the bottom but not seen as a threat and needs ways to build relationships or Natalie who was viewed as a good ally but bottom of an alliance and needed to become someone’s third. Basically it can’t be an obvious desperation move.
        I also feel in this Survivor Alternate Reality they aren’t so cynical as in Survivor US. This was just a good deed.

    1. #SurvivorAU

      I actually had that same thought before, it doesn’t seem unlikely that the rat would win out here over the snake.
      Possibly even if it is a really nice snake, like Brooke.

      What I did not come up with was the masterful branding of that idea.

    1. Every large alliance should use it to keep the fringe-members in check, I would think “the apple” can be a pretty powerful analogy. Never seems to work, though.

      Btw, I think that was only the second religious reference in 17 episodes of Australian Survivor.

  21. I also found it hilarious that Sam was all “is there anything we can do so that the others get their letters from home?”, and then when LaPaglia told him they could give up their own letters so the others could get one, Kirstie and El immediately did and Sam… didn’t.
    I really get the impression that he acts like a ‘nice guy’ but actually is a bit of a jerk.

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