Purple Rock Survivor Podcast: Heroes vs Healers vs Hustlers episode 6 “This is Why You Play Survivor”

Andy and John discuss the sixth episode of Survivor: Heroes vs Healers vs Hustlers.

Purple Rock Survivor podcast: Heroes vs Healers vs Hustlers Episode 6 “This is Why You Play Survivor”

Subscribe on iTunes
Subscribe on Stitcher
Subscribe on Google Play

In this episode, Andy and John discuss:

  • If THIS was the episode to turn us around on the season.
  • How John was really fooled that JP was going home.
  • If getting rid of Ali was the right move.
  • Why it was framed as Ryan’s choice instead of Chrissy’s.
  • Ryan’s post-tribal performance.
  • Why we liked Ali despite a near complete lack of success.
  • If it’s time Survivors start redefining what a “threat” is.
  • If we’re in a new era of Survivor, and if so, when did the revival end.
  • Heroism, Healing, and Hustling.
  • The various alliance configurations heading into the merge.

If you have questions or comments, @ us on Twitter, or send us an email (purplerockpodcast at gmail).

 

  • Judson Helland

    “Andy and John discuss the fifth episode of survivor HHH”
    This is because they have completely forgotten about robbed goddess pork like everyone else who isn’t on reddit

  • Koah Rong is season I like more then you guys because it has many fun moments.

    • BadPlayer91

      I adore Koah Rong as my first full season, but I also accept its faults. From beginning to end, it’s a really fun ride, but it has a handful of tricky problems that challenge its ability to really be an upper echelon amazing season.

    • Max_Jets

      I don’t know if Kaoh Rong has a dull scene until the last two episodes.

      • Super duper fan

        Kaoh Rong is great. Yeah, I would obviously prefered an Aubry, Cydney or Tai win, but it’s not like Michele was unlikable. And the journey for me is much more impotant than the destination, so I didn’t have anything to complain about then. I do personally prefer MvGX, but I do think Kaoh Rong is a bit underrated here.

      • Hornacek

        How about when everyone was sitting around waiting around for Joe to get back from the jungle during that challenge?

        • Max_Jets

          That was funny! It also happened in the last two episodes.

          • Hornacek

            Oh right! For some reason I thought that was the previous episode to the penultimate episode, but it makes sense because Joe won that reward and that was his downfall.

    • Kaoh Rong is fine. It’s dragged down by its winner and multiple evacuations, but it’s fine.

      • Purple Rock Emma

        In this line.

    • Maritimer

      I really think your opinion on KR comes down to your opinion on Jason and Scot as villains. If you think they’re good villains, you like KR, if you think they were just awful to watch, it moves KR way down your ranking

      • Roswulf

        I agree, and am VERY anti-KR. I much preferred Game Changers. Because both had unsatisfying ends…but the KR early game was miserable to watch while the GC early game was largely delightful (mostly because of Sandra).

        KR for me was a lot of time spent watching people get hurt and be unfunny jackasses. It made me question why I was watching the show.

        • Maritimer

          I’m with you on that. I really didn’t like KR because I couldn’t stand them

      • sharculese

        Kyle sucks hardcore. I won’t call him Jason because if he won’t let other people name themselves then he doesn’t get to name himself.

  • Taako From Teevhii

    I have not listened to the entire episode yet (and probably won’t for some time), but I want to do a deep dive in the Eras of Survivor (esp. bc a lot of what was said around @Gouis:disqus’s question happened on Twitter. I had previously said:

    I think Survivor moves in phases. There’s the Old School Era (1-11), the HII Era (12-20; yes it showed up before that, but it doesn’t feel right to include those seasons. Alt name: Exile Island Era, but is that better?), the Dark Ages (21-24), the Renaissance (25-29), and Meta Era (30-present).

    I like the term meta-survivor, and really the only reason Worlds Apart made it in there is bc Max and Shirin are essentially the heralds of the new era.

    I guess I would also add that WA can’t be a part of the Renaissance; I’m higher on SJDS than other people; and if you remove SJDS, the Renaissance becomes two top their seasons sandwiching two mediocre-to-below-average seasons, and then we have to rename the era.

    But I want to further say that I think we’re still way too close to be demarcating recent eras. You need a lot of distance and perspective to analyze the history accurately. Take for example the current American political climate. We’re clearly in a different space than we were fifteen years ago. But where would we define the boundaries of an era? Was it nearly a year ago on Election Day? Was it 06.16.15, when [REDACTED] rode down that stupid, gaudy escalator? Or was it sometime earlier in the Obama presidency when Fox News and Breitbart began to cultivate their audience? It’s very hard to tell without distance, and I think the same principle applies here.

    • Diego Armando

      Blood vs. Water was an extremely good season.

      • Taako From Teevhii

        I gave it a B. Granted, I also gave MvGX a B, for what that’s worth.

    • Maritimer

      I was one of the other people involved in this conversation. I tend to like the idea of delineating this meta Survivor era. It’s not a comment on their quality vis a vis the Renaissance era seasons but a note on style of play

  • Ms. Sweaterfan

    I love the ‘JP sounds like an NHL interview’ comment, because during the show I actually said “he sounds like when they interview a football coach at halftime” which is clearly the American translation of what Andy said.

  • Ms. Sweaterfan

    Random thought: if we consider that the tribes were actually called Heroes, Healers and Hustlers before the swap, is this the first time that a tribe name has ever been repeated from a previous season?

    • Taako From Teevhii

      I would add that technically, the tribe names were Levu, Soko, and Yawa; their banners and buffs say those names. It’s just that Jeff never called them that until after the swap.

      Though what do you mean “repeated from a previous season?”

      • Ms. Sweaterfan

        I was just thinking that if those were the official names of the tribes, then ‘Heroes’ has been used twice officially.

        • Taako From Teevhii

          I think we’re tracking towards that as long as they film in Fiji. We’ve had Bula Bula and Ika Bula, and the merged GC tribe almost incorporated a Bula or two into their name.

          • Hornacek

            The closest we’ve gotten to having a tribe name repeated from different seasons is Moto and Moto Maji.

            We had Chuay Gahn and Chuay Jai, but they were in the same season (Thailand) and Chuay Jai was the merged tribe name, combining the names of the two original tribes.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            What I find interesting is that Moto and Moto Maji were from different locations, which makes their nearly shared name much less likely.

          • Hornacek

            Africa and Fiji – not even neighbors or close in proximity.

        • Other Scott

          Well if we count Heroes as an “official” tribe name we should also count brains, brawn and beauty which were all duplicated.

          • Hornacek

            “Heroes” is an official tribe name in HvV – there is no other name for that tribe.

          • Other Scott

            Yeah I mean counting it as an official name this season

          • Hornacek

            According to the Survivor Wiki, the official name of the blue tribe this season is Levu. HvV is the only (?) season where the descriptive English words for the tribes were the actual tribe names.

          • sharculese

            Yeah, this is a repeat of what Jeff did in MvGX. Those tribes had on-the-flag names from Day 1, too, but Jeff didn’t use them until after the swap.

    • Hornacek

      Tribe name trivia: what is the only tribe name that is also the name of a player? (same spelling)

      • Taako From Teevhii

        I’m assuming this tribe and player are not on the same season. To answer the question not but directly reveal the answer, this tribe had a player who phonetically shares a name with a tribe from Kaoh Rong.

        • Hornacek

          They are different seasons. The tribe name and player name are spelled exactly the same.

          ETA: Yes, the next closest is a player whose name sounds identical to a Kaoh Rong tribe name but is spelled with 2 more letters.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            We should add that the name is technically shared by two players.

          • Hornacek

            Oh, good call! I forgot about the other player with that name.

      • sharculese

        Tom Westman

    • Hornacek

      More tribe trivia: what are the only 2 letters that are not the first letter in a tribe name?

      (I am bored at work today)

      • F***ing Stick

        One is Q. Too lazy to figure out the other.

        • Hornacek

          The other is W.

          I would have thought X but there has been a tribe name starting with X (“Xhakúm”)

          • F***ing Stick

            I knew about Xhakum. I’m surprised W hasn’t been used yet.

  • Maritimer

    Survivor should have redefined threat a long time ago. How many times has the male challenge beast won the season? Tom, JT, Mike. That’s it? And really, Tom doesn’t fit the mold we are looking at here.

    • Taako From Teevhii

      For that matter, I’m not sure JT does either.

      • Maritimer

        That’s true. Tyson, Brendan, Joe are probably the ones you’d slot into the “Colby type” that season, which is where the “threat” idea comes from, even though he lost to the strategist

        • Taako From Teevhii

          You can also add Ozzy (CI) and Brad Culpepper (GC) as male challenge threats who lost in the Finals to a more strategic opponent.

          • Maritimer

            Yeah, and I imagine there are a couple others we’re not coming up with, which is where I will concede they are a threat in the sense that it may be your seat at FTC they are taking

    • sharculese

      The thing that gets forgotten in all of the “whataboutMike-ry” is that Mike didn’t win in a vacuum. He was a Survivor super-nerd who had seen every season 3 times and built practice obstacle course in a junkyard. That all hit the cutting room floor because that’s not the type Mike is supposed to be, but Mike went out prepared to play Survivor.

      And he didn’t win out to the end. They put a challenge in the middle of his run that was tailor made for him to lose, and guess what, he lost it. He stayed in the game because he had an idol, and he had an idol because he clued in to Tyler acting really suspicious about knowing the idol clue. Absolutely none of this describes your average big, muscular dude.

      • Maritimer

        Didn’t know that, but that’s interesting. He was a cross breed between the challenge beast and the strategist/Survivor need type. So really what we are saying is that 0 times has the JP type won so how can we call him a threat (unless you’re just taking the target off yourself, which is legit)

        • sharculese

          I don’t think Mike was a master strategist or even an okay strategist. I’m pretty sure he went out there knowing post-merge immunities had to be part of his winning resume.

          • Other Scott

            I think Mike was a pretty decent strategist. Getting Sierra out when he did was a big win for his game and the Shirin fake-out with the idol really helped get another threat to him, Tyler, out with the next vote.

          • Maritimer

            I’d say he was an okay strategist, nothing special, which is more than many of his archetype

    • BadPlayer91

      I would think in some ways the term ‘threat’ doesn’t necessarily mean ‘they will win this game’ but rather that they will cause my downfall. While challenge beasts rarely win, they absorb a lot of the individual immunities that are available, and thus reduce the chances for everyone else. For example, In Panama Terry was able to immunity himself to final 3, but he still didn’t win. Instead, simply be taking the immunity necklace week after week, he pushed others out of the game. I don’t buy in to the concept that a player will immunity to the win (cause it so rarely happens, and requires a very particular jury), but I do get the idea of leveling the playing field so that you have just the much more chance of winning a challenge. Cause plenty of times, winning just the right challenge has been the difference in making FTC or not.

      • Maritimer

        Fair! I would agree with this too (Joe is another good Adam ole) but the young buff guys arent even always your immunity beasts and in this case , if you’re in JPs side, like Ryan ostensibly is, you don’t care if he’s winning immunities, he’s not a threat to you, he’s a threat to the other side. You want him at your side in FTC.

        • BadPlayer91

          True, but have we seen JP and Ryan talk for more than half a second? It seems like Ryan and JP are only aligned by proxy through Chrissy, and thus Ryan can’t really be sure that JP winning immunities would benefit him. Some pretty far out thinking, and obviously not something Ryan bought into having booted Ali, but I could understand why getting rid of JP might at very least provide a greater chance for Ryan and Chrissy, arguably two of the weakest challenge competitors going into the merge.

          I think, overall, challenge beasts really are no where near the ‘threat’ players cast them as, but whether aligned or not, them taking up all the immunities is a bad thing. For Sundra in Cook Islands, there is a good chance Yul and Becky take her to FTC, but Ozzy is a challenge beast, and thus his win is her lost. Ozzy’s challenge prowess helped her to a point, but then it was her downfall.

          • Maritimer

            No, I don’t think JP and Ryan are directly aligned, but being aligned by proxy is worth something. And JP winning immunity is better than, say, Cole winning it. Ryan and Chrissy are unlikely to win the kind of immunities JP would win regardless of whether or not he’s in the game.

            Yes, that’s fair too. You don’t necessarily want the challenge beast still hanging around at 4-5 when it really matters, but that’s also not a reason to boot them pre-merge if they’re going to vote with you for a while post-merge

    • purplerockandy

      The caveat here is if you’re defining success merely by “which type of player has won” the issue you get is that maybe challenge threats haven’t won a lot BECAUSE everyone recognizes their threat level and prevents it from happening.

      So for me, the question is less “are challenge threats not that threatening” and more “should the skinny nerds be targeted early as threats”.

      • Taako From Teevhii

        I lean towards no (and not just because I’m a skinny nerd). The skinny nerd’s skillset can help you get further in the game if you align with him. The Challenge Best helps you only up to the merge; after that, his skills only contribute to his own success.

        • purplerockandy

          Sure helped Ali.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            Well it definitely helped Amber, Parvati, and JT, if you wanna cherry pick examples.

          • purplerockandy

            I’m legit at a loss to figure out which skinny nerds helped Amber and Parvati.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            Ok, I guess I’m extrapolating “skinny nerd” to “more strategic partner” as a way of pointing out that strategic partners can help you (which was my original point).

          • purplerockandy

            The skinny nerd part is important because they frequently don’t offer much in the early part of the game, and in fact can require extra effort to keep them in your alliance or put you in danger of going to tribal council, yet in the second half of the game, can become threats to both win and eliminate you.

            In short, the threat level they pose should be recognized and weigh in on whether or not you’re better off just getting rid of them.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            Well, they often contribute to puzzles that many challenge beasts are notoriously bad at. And those have become the great equalizers of tribal challenges in recent seasons. But if you expand that, anyone who isn’t an obvious meathead should get cut, which I don’t think is necessarily good strategy.

            I’m onboard with the weighing of all threats in any shape or size. I just think that targeting a skinny nerd for being a skinny nerd is no different than targeting a challenge threat for being a challenge threat.

          • purplerockandy

            I’m not saying it is different. I’m saying that it’s not done. They are never recognized early as potential threats. If they are targeted early, it’s due to weakness.

            But why did Survivor cast them? What is their role? After the success of Cochran, Adam, David Wright, and the current success of Ryan, player might need to start recognizing that it might be “they know what they’re doing and will cut you”.

          • ADS Pumpkins

            And (puzzles) have become the great equalizers of tribal challenges in recent seasons….

            The challenge consultant Miles Nye was on Dom and Colin a while back to discuss Society Game–in other words, I may be the only person here who listened to the episode (go MJ!!!)–and he explained why that is, and it kind of blew my mind. It’s that the old-school Survivor combat games (Schmergenbrawl, Sumo at Sea, Battle Dig, etc) are impossible to do with three tribes. So carnival games have taken over recently just because some alternatives are eliminated. In addition, they never do combat games for individual immunity because people will straight up kill each other.

            So an unintended consequence of the three-tribe era is to tilt the balance slightly toward nerds and away from the tall buff young dudes.

          • purplerockandy

            That is interesting (although not ALL italics interesting).

            Of course, that assumes that skinny nerds are always good at puzzles. Even though Ryan has yet to attempt one and David lost every puzzle he tried in the tribe phase.

          • By The Numbers

            It’s actually amazing to me that Ryan is still there considering how absolutely trash he appears to be at challenges.

          • Hornacek

            Before the swap, Ryan and Devon were like Master Blaster. Devon’s great challenge performance helped hide Ryan’s performance (see Ryan treading water while Devon did all the swimming and diving in the signpost (?) challenge).

          • purplerockandy

            Which, frankly, is a testament to the things he’s doing well this season. Because as far as we know, no one is holding it against him at all.

          • sharculese

            Let’s be honest, they’re not doing schermgenbrawl anymore because it was only a matter of time before they killed someone.

          • ADS Pumpkins

            It’s amazing that they brought that one back at all. Like, they had the sense not to do the Chet memorial challenge from Micronesia more than once.

          • sharculese

            I suspect it was a combination of “we already built this big arena” and “next season is veterans, surely they’ll be more careful.” And then that turned out to be opposite of true.

          • Hornacek

            I feel bad upvoting a comment that talks about the potential of the game killing players.

          • Thanks for sharing that. It makes sense, and my guess is that they’re compensating by trying to put some heavy lifting into three-tribe challenges to make it riskier to eliminate muscle too early.

          • ADS Pumpkins

            Yeah, it’s one of those things that seem completely obvious, but only after you hear it. Once head-to-head (to-head) team-sports-type competitions are off the table, some kind of physically taxing obstacle course is really all you have left.

          • StormofCuteness

            Parvati was very good at winning individual immunity and in all challenges. Not that she didn’t use men to her advantage as well.

      • Other Scott

        I don’t think the skinny nerds have that much better a win percentage than the challenge threats though.

        There’s Cochran, and Adam, and Todd and that’s it.

        Challenge threats have Tom, Mike, JT, Tyson, Rob, Fabio arguably Aras and Ethan

        • purplerockandy

          I’m not sure there is a type with a strong winning percentage if your definition is limited merely to “the 34 people who have won Survivor”.

          • Other Scott

            UTR women tend to do pretty well – mostly because if you’re a woman and don’t fit that type you get voted out pretty quickly.

          • Roswulf

            I’m skeptical. There are a LOT of UTR women on Survivor (hi, sexist nature of US society!). Are you counting people like Simone and…uh…that woman who went off first this season as UTR? I think you have to.

            And if you aren’t, I think that this becomes a results-based definition. A UTR player who fails doesn’t count as UTR.

          • Alkanarra

            Absolutely this. Hali is a UTR player. She was the merge boot twice and did nothing both times. UTR women are successful only if you forget all the pointless UTR women who weren’t successful, in which case that applies to any category.

          • Other Scott

            True enough, I’m just saying in terms of “which category of people has the most winners” that’s the one that sticks out.

        • StormofCuteness

          Again, add Parvati as a challenge threat.

      • ADS Pumpkins

        And @disqus_sjBnbSyo83:disqus is only defining theat as winning the season. Malcolm, Ozzy etc. are not not threats.

        • Maritimer

          Yeah, I know I’m over simplifying the argument here, but generally for the sake of agreeing with Andy that big buff guys aren’t the only threats we need to look at. Of course those guys are threats but there are a lot of factors to a threat

      • Maritimer

        Yeah, I understating your question, I just wanted to attack it from the other angle to come to a similar conclusion – making big buff guys the threat by default is overly simplified Survivor strategy

        • Other Scott

          More importantly – big buff guy is a good people for non big buff guys to target because it would be a category of people that does not describe them. So I think that’s the reason people do, it’s convenient way of making somebody else the target.

          • purplerockandy

            But in doing so, they may be overlooking more dangerous threats.

          • Other Scott

            I would argue you don’t want to take out the most dangerous people in early merge anyways – unless there’s only 2 or 3 people you think you can beat in the end.

          • purplerockandy

            But what if those dangerous people also didn’t otherwise contribute much to the tribe?

          • Other Scott

            Depends how much you trust them to stay with you. If I’m Chrissy the way that Ryan threw aside Ali so easily is definitely throwing up alarm bells for me, but most people don’t care because they think “picking their side” is a show of loyatly – when in reality it’s kind of a show of disloyalty.

          • Maritimer

            Yes, and that totally makes sense. They make an easy target and from a strategy perspective that makes total sense

          • BadPlayer91

            Something this reminded me of is, first impressions can be everything in Survivor, in the worst ways. Buff guys suffer in the post-merge because they are really visible as being buff. All the other traits that might define someone as a ‘threat’ such as a social game or being a smart strategist are harder to see and determine. You really can’t define someone as being the strategic threat you need to remove until you’ve see them vote and play for a bit. But as soon as the merge happens, it’s super easy to look at the fit, buff men and say “I know they will be good at challenges” and that gives you a quick target till you get your bearings.

            And with this in mind, i’m less sympathetic about it all. Women tend to get early boots for the same reason, when you don’t know the other players or have a target yet, castaways reason that the oldest woman must be the biggest ‘threat’ to that tribes ability to win challenges. So at both the start of the game, and the start of the merge, prejudices against older women and buff dudes play against them. It makes the cases in which older women and buff dudes make it further (and/or win the game) all that more impressive.

          • purplerockandy

            I’m not suggesting at all that we need to sympathize with the poor brawny dudes. I’m saying that sticking to the script might be hurting people’s games. It turns out that David was the biggest threat to Chris’ game.

          • BadPlayer91

            Definitely, I was more just yarning about how big an impact simply looking buff or being a woman can have on your game. I agree, it would make sense to eventually have someone saying “this nerdy kid is a huge threat, i’ve seen how these things go.”

            Maybe, in some ways, Chrissy’s vehement need to get Roark out was a shade of that? She did seem very convinced that Roark was smart and crafty enough to win this, and clearly so did many of us who picked her.

      • sharculese

        The other confounding factor here is that on the podcast, you couldn’t get through the list of nerds without mentioning Spencer, who absolutely belongs on that list, but is also is a tall, athletic guy who would probably have even more immunity necklaces on his record than he already does if he hadn’t played both of his seasons alongside Tasha.

        • purplerockandy

          Yeah, Spencer should actually be targeted as both a strategic and physical threat.

        • Spencer is underrated as a challenge competitor, and it’s definitely because of how he looks/his archetype.

          • Hornacek

            It’s the green shirt. Throws everyone off.

    • Hornacek

      Cochran

    • StormofCuteness

      Parvati.

      • Maritimer

        Yeah, I was specifically talking about the male challenge beast type that are frequently considered to be targets. Several female winners were challenge beasts (Parvati and Kim come to mind) but they aren’t generally considered targets for their challenge ability

        • StormofCuteness

          Actually having recently watched One World (which was horrible), Kim was very much seen as a challenge threat. Troyzan mentions it multiple times to no avail.

      • Diego Armando

        She only won 1 Immunity in Micronesia.

        Fabio and Boston Rob each won 4 in their seasons.

        • StormofCuteness

          Man, my memory must suck because I thought she won the hugging the pole, the having your arm up so water doesn’t fall on you, and the final immunity. Plus was really good in tribe challenges.

          • Super duper fan

            The hugging pole one won Ozzy, which was brought up in GC as part of the storyline that he never lost that challenge. The final immunity won Amanda, Parvati was the first out. But she did win the holding the arm up challenge, and she pretty much was always very good in most of them, so it kinda evens out.

          • StormofCuteness

            Huh, did she maybe win the pole won on another season?

          • F***ing Stick

            She participated in that challenge in Cook Islands and HvV. Ozzy won it in CI and she wasn’t particularly close to winning (I think it came down to a battle between Ozzy and Candice). In HvV, she gave it up to Danielle at the merge.

          • StormofCuteness

            Like in HvV did they both stay up and strike a deal? Or did she fall? Anyway, it’s clear I shouldn’t make comments about past seasons because I mix facts and fiction up. Sigh.

          • F***ing Stick

            They struck a deal. They were the last two up there and Parvati had an idol, so she let Danielle win. Based on shots from earlier in the challenge, it looked like Parvati was in the best shape to win had she chosen to fight for it (you may recall seeing a gif of Parvati casually hanging off the side of the pole with just one arm and one foot).

          • StormofCuteness

            Whew, at least there was some reason I thought she was really good at it.

          • F***ing Stick

            Yeah. She was definitely beasting it in that challenge (here it is, if you’re curious: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9rnc-eucvU). She generally does well in the endurance-style challenges.

          • StormofCuteness

            Yeah, I like how good she is at things that require determination.

          • Super duper fan

            She nearly won HvV (I’m not sure about the CI), but she in the end gave the win to Danielle.

          • StormofCuteness

            I keep forgetting Amanda won. I am bad at memory

          • F***ing Stick

            There was no hugging-the-pole challenge in Micronesia. Ozzy won it in Cook Islands and South Pacific (final duel).

          • Super duper fan

            Oh, ok thanks.

  • Vagabond

    So as the guy who said Doctor Mike was his favorite (low bar) after the first episode I have to say that I thought his scene with Ben this week was delightful. The two of them have a real JT/Fishbach country boy/city boy thing going on and seem to genuinely like each other and it is a lot of fun to watch.

    I’m hoping we will start seeing more of Doctor Mike now that we are merged and his tribe never lost an immunity challenge so they always got short changed on screen time. If he jumps ship on the young idiots (or even brings the Jessica with him, really Cole is the idiot) and power couples up with Ben that would go a long way towards salvaging the season for me. I think they would be a fun pair to watch, especially if they end up opposed to Ryan (who it’s been established is F’ing obnoxious) and take him out.

    • sharculese

      What I like about the Ben and Mike thing, though, is that, aside from the Story of Mike and the Fish, which was too good not to include, it wasn’t force fed to us as “can you believe the cowboy marine and the nerdy doctor are friends?” It was just two guys who get each other and have similar goals gelling like normal people.

      • Vagabond

        Exactly. The feeling of authenticity is what really makes it enjoyable. Survivor is always at it’s best when the players (and producer say) are letting the storylines and relationships develop naturally rather than trying to force them. *cough* Ryan Sucks! *cough*

  • Taako From Teevhii

    I wonder if in redefining “threat,” we can come up with new animal metaphors, e.g. snakes, rats, goats.

    Is a player who is good strictly at challenges a Silver Back or a Grizzly? Is a player who sniffs out multiple idols a bloodhound (or in Hantz’s case, a truffle pig)?

    • sharculese

      Russell already has an animal descriptor, he’s a bandy-legged troll.

      • Taako From Teevhii

        He can be two things.

      • Diego Armando

        I thought he was a Hobbit on crack.

        • sharculese

          Hobbits aren’t animals, they’re just small Men who make up for their lack of physical power with a greater resilience of spirit, probably the divine gift of Eru Iluvatar to aid in the battle against the Dark Lord.

          • StormofCuteness

            I hadn’t read this brilliant response when I made mine. My is now redundant. *applauds*

        • StormofCuteness

          That’s an insult to Hobbits! This will not stand!

    • Hornacek

      A player that helps out other players without asking for anything in return is a German Shepherd.

      • Taako From Teevhii

        This better not turn out to be another round of this Littlest Hobo beef.

        • Hornacek

          (runs away cackling)

        • the sky is falling

          “Now, the world don’t move to the beat of just one drum,
          What might be right for you, may not be right for some.

          It takes Diff’rent Strokes to move the world.”

          • Hornacek

            Upvoted for using the “correct” spelling of “different”.

          • the sky is falling

            It should only be 1/2 an upvote. It was merely correct usage of “CMND C” and “CMND V”

          • Hornacek

            upv’te

      • Diego Armando

        The worthless alliance mate (Troy) a remora.

  • Other Scott

    I’m going to put this here because I just finished the episode last night and no one will see it in the live blog. The edit for Cole has been weird. Like it’s obviously been negative but it’s been harping on such strange things:

    1. Legit blunder in telling everyone about Jessica’s advantage – that was fine.
    2. Licking his fingers after eating – while not really sanitary, this isn’t exactly like prime villain/ annoying stuff
    3. And today was the worst of it – they made a big deal of how much he was eating compared to the rest of the tribe, it’s almost like they don’t understand that people who work out and exercise actually DO need more food for their body to function. And then when he passed out actually proving that he wasn’t eating enough and it wasn’t just him being a baby, their response was “well he shouldn’t have been so jacked going on the show he knew what he was getting into”. Like every tribe in the past hasn’t appreciated that they had muscle to get themselves through the strength part of the challenges.

    I know this isn’t really the site that loves Cole or anything – but the edit is so negative for such inane reasons in my opinion.

    • Alkanarra

      The “he shouldn’t have been so jacked” stuff was extra amusing because if he didn’t look like that, they wouldn’t have let him on the island. Dude was cast for a reason.

      I’m guessing Jessica drops him like a ton of bricks and we’re supposed to see the reasons why to justify her as someone to root for, otherwise it’s definitely been all over the place. Either that or he’s her downfall. Regardless, he’s just a necessary tool of her story.

      • Other Scott

        I don’t see Jessica dropping him unless he accidentally screws her over again. That said, she’s definitely not going to tell him about Mike’s idol.

        • Super duper fan

          Unless Mike flips on them of course.

          • Other Scott

            The beauty of Jessica knowing about Mike’s idol is it’s good insurance against him flipping.

          • Diego Armando

            If the Hustlers and Heroes band together, it might be a good idea for Mike to bolt to avoid that sinking ship.

      • ADS Pumpkins

        As much as we complain (fairly IMO) about who tends to be early boots and who tends to get a free pass to the merge, the young strong dudes are really at a structural disadvantage in this part of the game.

        • Alkanarra

          It’s the trade off for them being protected in the early rounds. The advantage they have, though, is they’re given time to build an alliance whereas the young women are usually cut before swaps or having had the time to really sink their teeth in. The dude has time to try to get people to protect them; the young woman is always playing by herself.

          • ADS Pumpkins

            I wasn’t going to elaborate further but yeah, that’s the asymmetry.

        • By The Numbers

          The game really is slanted towards guys in the pre merge and slanted towards women post merge.

      • He’s a necessary tool, all right.

        • Hornacek

    • sharculese

      To be fair the person who was saying he should have put on weight before the game was Ben,the other big, muscly guy on his tribe, who probably has more insight into what someone of that body-type should do than anyone else there.

      And past that, getting by with limited resources in a situation where decisions are made by group consensus and you have to make trade-offs to avoid angering the other members of the group fundamentally is the game of Survivor. Yes, we should bag on him for doing a bad job of that.

      • Other Scott

        I mean he tried and then fainted from lack of nourishment. I don’t know exactly what you’re asking him to do.

        • sharculese

          I’m asking him to go back in time and have put some thought into the condition he needed to be in to go on Survivor.

          I know that sounds like I’m being glib, and well, I kind of am, but I also mean it. All kinds of body types present challenges to the deprivation of the Survivor game. Being ready for that in advance is on you.

          • Other Scott

            I just don’t think that people who consume 4,000 calories a day to keep up with their workout activity can go back to only needing a normal amount in the short amount of time that you know you’re going on Survivor.

          • sharculese

            I don’t think so either. But there are a lot of people who’s physical condition makes Survivor too hard for them, many for reasons beyond their control. So sympathy for dudes who put all their spare time into their workout routine is special pleading I’m not willing to engage in.

          • Other Scott

            I’m not saying “be sympathetic” I’m saying don’t trash the guy as hard as everyone’s been doing because of things outside his control

          • purplerockandy

            I also think we may be overestimating how much prep time Cole had to be on Survivor. It is often much shorter than most people think.

        • StormofCuteness

          How about not catching a fish and then eating it all without sharing? That seems like a dick move to me.

          • purplerockandy

            Yeah, that’s just plain stupid. Clearly the move of someone who has never seen the show before.

          • Maybe he was a fan of Fan Favorite Jane Bright.

          • purplerockandy

            Look, if he ate his own fish by himself, I’d applaud it as savvy. But out in the open? Nah.

          • BadPlayer91

            !!!!! I’m about to get to that episode in Nicaragua! It was in my ‘next time on’

            and yes…i’ve come to the part of my completionist journey where I am slogging through good ole Season 21…

          • F***ing Stick

            What seasons do you have left? (I remember reading in the off-season that you’re watching them in a non-chronological order)

          • BadPlayer91

            Urm, yeah, they are all over the place. At this point it is: 9-11, 14-15, 17-24, 26, 29. I’m at 19/34 though by the end of the year should be at least at 21/25

            The non-chronology was initially because I didn’t have access to the early seasons, and then it was because I was trying to watch the seasons my boyfriend had seen that way I could save the ones he hasn’t seen to watch together.

          • F***ing Stick

            Cool. That makes sense.

          • Diego Armando

            At least it isn’t Thailand.

          • By The Numbers

            I’ve been going through the seasons of Survivor I never watched and I’m on Nicaragua. This is the 3rd time I’ve tried watching it and I’ve never made it to the merge

          • StormofCuteness

            Hey, I just thought of something Lauren said that was funny, and I don’t see as complaining. She was surmising that Jessica and Cole weren’t long for couplehood “because can you see her living in the van” and a few more on point comments that made me laugh.

          • Other Scott

            True enough. Though once again, the other tribe members seem to be doing just fine without that fish whereas Cole is fainting from lack of nourishment. I think given the information we have, I would say Cole needs that fish more than the rest of them do. He should definitely offer to share from a game perspective though.

          • sharculese

            It’s not just the nourishment. It’s the hunger pangs while you watch someone else eat.

          • Which is why the twist of having 2 people sit out at the merge feast last season was supposed to be so heartbreaking, except when the 2 people you expect to sit out do sit out.

          • Other Scott

            I’d actually be interested to hear more sides of that story. You think it’d be a bigger deal that Cole caught a fish, cooked it, and ate it in front of everyone except we hear it briefly in one confessional as a passing statement.

          • StormofCuteness

            But you were already upset that they were too negative about Cole. Are you saying you think there’s a side of that story where Cole looks good?

          • Other Scott

            I’m not sure! That’s what happens when something is only covered as a blow by in one confessional

          • StormofCuteness

            Sorry, I just can’t agree. Some people, for many reasons, will feel hungerier than others. It’s part of the game to suck it up and fit in. Stealing food as in Gen x v. Mil or not sharing or taking more has always and will always get you in trouble.

            Certainly, his fainting was scary, but we have no idea when that occured. It could have been after getting back from a challenge, and he was more expended than normal.

          • Other Scott

            I think that needs to change to be honest. The people who need to eat more should be allowed to eat more, it’s just good for the overall health of the tribe and keeps everyone in the top conditions for the challenges and prevents episodes like the fainting one.

    • ADS Pumpkins

      I think that one way or another Cole isn’t a factor in the end game, and those scenes are more about shedding light on people who make it farther in the game than him (Mike, Ben, Lauren).

      • Other Scott

        I can agree with that. I just get my hackles up at how easily people fall for editing tricks on whether to hate or love certain characters.

    • Max_Jets

      It’s not constant negativity though, it’s been more of a mixed bag. Number 1 is a huge deal, because it’s bad game play that led to Jessica not trusting him and putting more of her trust in Mike. The eating stuff was expressed by his entire tribe and explains the tribe dynamics. The edit didn’t invent that.

      • Other Scott

        No the edit doesn’t invent anything – it’s just a matter of which light they choose to portray people. I’m sure there’s enough fodder for the editors to create a negative edit of practically anyone.

        • Max_Jets

          Right, but if Cole really is the target for the tribe, doesn’t that alone explain the eating negativity? It seems to genuinely be important to the other tribe members, whether we agree with them or not.

          • StormofCuteness

            Additionally, catching fish and not sharing it with any other tribemate is universally disliked on all seasons of Survivor.

          • Other Scott

            Yes, I’m just annoyed by the negativity.

    • By The Numbers

      I’m wondering if it’s a “Cole ruins Jessica” edit.

      Everything seems to show that Jessica is very well liked, and her confessionals show a solid understanding of the game.
      Then there’s Cole. She is attached to him, but he grates on everyone else. He functions as an anchor dragging her down.

      The edit seemed to lean into this after he passed out, when we saw everyone say “Cole’s a liability”, and then Jessica saying how much she cares about him

      • Don’t forget that her first confessional was her talking about how hot Cole was. All of her content centers on Cole, even when he is not on screen.

        • Mike Hirsch

          Cole is Jessica’s Poochie.

          • “You the fool I pity.” – Cole to Jessica, before he dies on the way back to his home planet

        • By The Numbers

          I hope she agrees to cut him loose and go with Ben and Mike at the merge though.

          • I feel like we have been shown that she just keeps getting drawn to him.

          • By The Numbers

            Hopefully to make it all the more dramatic when she votes him out

            (Wishful thinking, I know)

  • Ms. Sweaterfan

    I have a super hot take that I think everyone will hate, but I think that Ali was the Michele of this season.

    Justification: she is a sweet, pretty girl whose main skill in the game was to charm and befriend other players. While we saw that she was involved in discussions of who to vote out, she never really seemed to drive any of those decisions and she ultimately capitulated to stronger personalities. In fact, her whole argument to Ryan was that she would have voted out Roark if he’d just told her to.

    I’m not sure what magic factor made us like her where many of us disliked Michele, but I think their games were similar at a basic level – Ali just went to tribal too many times early on, where Michele was able to slip through without a loss.

    Come at me… 😉

    • Max_Jets

      Ali gave better confessionals.

    • Other Scott

      I see Ali as a much stronger personality than Michele, which is ultimately what got her into trouble. Ryan was scared to tell her about voting out Roark because he was scared of her reaction, and then he voted her out partially because she reacted strongly when she was blindsided.

      To me this continues the very unfortunate trend of woman with stronger personalities being voted out quickly, while men with strong personalities tend to get used as shields and dragged along.

      • By The Numbers

        I think that’s because women with strong personalities are liked, while men with strong personalities are usually viewed as boarish and overbearing.

    • Roswulf

      It’s possible- we didn’t see that much of Ali (or, heh, Michele) but I do think using her argument with Ryan in this episode as evidence is off-base. She’d have to be spectacularly dim to at that point argue anything but “I WAS TOTALLY DOWN TO CUT ROARK! HATE THE ROARK! I WAS READY TO BE WITH YOU, OVERWHELMING MAJORITY”

      Especially in front of Chrissy.

      • I totally understand Ali’s reaction, and it’s really not even a bad argument since it’s in the same “I am always willing to work with you” vein. But the “Hey good move guys, it’s us till the end now!” move seems to be more effective.

        • ADS Pumpkins

          Yeah, the way Ashley flattered Joe after the idol play even though she must have been super-pissed.

    • sharculese

      Ali was the driving force at pre-swap Hustlers, something Michele never was.

      Also, nobody hated Michele. The hostility was more towards the obnoxiousness of the Michele-truthers, who would stumble into conversations and demand everyone stop discussing the season because the outcome was pre-ordained.

      • Max_Jets

        She did say dislike, but people are still hating on Michele.

      • Ms. Sweaterfan

        Was Ali a driving force, though? I will admit that she popped more edit-wise than Michele premerge, but I don’t feel like she was running things at the Hustlers’ camp, if that’s what you mean. It seemed to me like she went along with tribe consensus at each vote. I actually really liked Ali so I’m not trying to argue that she’s a bad player or anything, just that her style was more focused on being social and flexible than anything else, in my opinion, which is a very Michele thing to do 🙂

        • Other Scott

          Who was the driving force in your opinion then Ms Sweater?

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            I’m not sure we were shown one definitively. I think Lauren was really pushing the Patrick vote hard, and before that it seemed like Ali actually kind of wanted to keep Simone but ended up ceding to the boys. I think that Ali provided the narrative thread that held the story together, but I don’t think she was dictating the strategy on that tribe, which is how I would define ‘driving force’ (but I could be defining it differently than others).

          • purplerockandy

            But at least we can admit that, unlike Michele, the tribe wasn’t talking about getting rid of her at the earliest opportunity, right?

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            True. And I didn’t mention it earlier, but she seems more athletic than Michele too, which is something.

          • Max_Jets

            Classic Michele Diaz-Twine

            (to be clear, I am referring to Pearl Islands)

          • Hornacek

            “Damn, Debbie!”

      • Just remembering the OWMichele Truthers fills me with rage. They were the worst.

        Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to delete all evidence of us constantly banging the “Tony is going to win” drum for most of the back half of Cagayan.

        • the sky is falling

          Nah, Tony was a delight and Michele was boring. We are right and they are wrong! FAKE NEWS!

    • ADS Pumpkins

      At first I thought you were making a comparison with Michelle Schubert, which actually also kind of works.

    • Hornacek

      Counterpoint: Ali never kicked a challenge over.

    • Alycia Swift

      Not all of us liked Ali. I did not. I liked Patrick cause I thought he was funny … and had red hair. But she did play a lot like Michele. Maybe if she had never gone to tribal counsel …

    • gouis

      Another good take.

    • Diego Armando

      Michele had the personality and charisma of a hunk of cardboard.

      • Purplerockmatt

        what the hell did cardboard ever do to you

      • EmAndScoutInBK

        I think some viewers felt that way, but clearly, the other Survivors didn’t feel that way

    • Streets_Ahead

      Michele was/is much better than Ali.

      • purplerockandy

        She certainly was much better at “being on tribes that didn’t go to tribal council”. Have to give her that.

    • Crappy

      The problem with Michele was not limited to her gameplay but that she was a very boring narrator. She had some peppy confessionals but by large watching her narrate was not an engaging experience. Ali on the other hand is easily someone you can have as a main character of your season, much more dynamic than Michele IMHO.

      Coming specifically to game play, the narrative of Michele as some kind of social game phenom is completely false since it ignores that she was on the bottom of every single pre-merge tribe she was on. We don’t know for certain that she would have gone home on any pre-merge TC but it is still a negative to count against her. Ali, who I do believe played somewhat poorly in pre merge, was a much more active player who kind of leaned too much on ‘anyone but me’ strategy instead of taking control when she should have. But even accounting for that, it can be easily argued she went home primarily due to super idol fiasco.

  • ADS Pumpkins

    Burning question: Why does Devon only have a goatee?

    • sharculese

      That’s all the facial hair some dudes can grow. Have you seen Boston Rob like 10 days into any of his seasons?

      • purplerockandy

        That’s not fair. Rob also grows a good 7-9 hairs on his cheeks.

        • Other Scott

          Andy steps in to defend Rob no matter what

          • sharculese

            I’m assuming that he’s currently plotting how to get revenge on Taako for implying Rob was a nerd.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            I’m sorry for implying Rob was a nerd. I should rectify that.

            I am explicitly calling Boston Rob a big ole nerd.

          • purplerockandy

            Must be why the internet loves him so and identifies with him so easily.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            Is this your idea of a defense? Associating him with the same Survivor Internet that you put on blast in the above episode of the podcast?

          • purplerockandy

            Sure

          • purplerockandy

            I’m not sure that was actually a defence.

  • Diego Armando

    For those who did not tune in during the off season, Andy just voiced an angrier version of my Zeke Fan Friction article. Big moves are good for the show and why is making Probst unhappy a great thing?

  • Mike Hirsch

    I was going to comment, but then I saw that Shadowgate was available on the PS4 so now I have to go get killed a bunch of times. Great thing, though, guys. You’re the best at Survivor porchcasts.

    • BadPlayer91

      PORCHCAST!

  • Kemper Boyd

    I was mainly doing a hot take when I said Survivor died at World’s Apart but if you think that made you angry imagine how I felt when you said such a terrible thing as SJDS is a terrible season. I declare vengeance.

    • Violina23

      I do not have strong feelings for or against SJDS. Not sure what that says about me

  • I think the Renaissance of Survivor is dead because Worlds Apart did end by introducing the ever-present advantage. We are now deep into the bowels of the Advantage Era.

    Now, you’re probably saying “We have had challenge advantages since Guatemala” and you’re right. But we are in the era where these advantages can much larger ramifications than challenges. Quite simply, these new advantages mess with the agency of our players. It almost seems like the producers have told the players to not worry about making big moves, because the advantages will almost certainly do that for you.

    • BadPlayer91

      I think we are just at the tipping point with MvGx and GC where advantages are starting to over power players personal initiative and ability to maneuver and strategize within the game. Much more and it will really start to strangle personal choices and self-made big moves from players.

      Then again, if we were to get to the point where we have as many advantages of players, it would become a free for all of advantage warfare, based not upon who has advantages, but who will use them when against whom. Like everyone is holding loaded guns, just waiting for someone to shoot…

      • I really think that is why Production is trying to overcorrect the issues with advantages, but they don’t see Advantageaggeddon as an issue. They think that is a highlight, which is a major concern.

        • BadPlayer91

          Yeah, i think I would feel far less annoyed by Advantageaggeddon if Production didn’t seem to be patting themselves on the back about it, and even aiming at it in the future. If that happens naturally, sure, whatever, but not something we want to replicate, particularly as it boils down to production trying to orchestrate strategy and in-game choices, which I never want to happen.

          Also, it took out beloved Cirie.

          • Also, it seemed like Advantageaggeddon really rewarded mediocrity in a way that Survivor hasn’t really ever done before.

          • BadPlayer91

            Yeah, it wasn’t like all the players had carefully planned their choices and it just so happened to all collide. The advantages would expire, so if you were lucky enough to find one, but not smart enough to weaponize it, that was just the time to use it, as dictated to you. Troy didn’t seem to even think about it, he was just like ‘oh, right, I have to use this, like everyone else…’ I agree, not a great look, and disappointing that Production was so proud of it.

          • Diego Armando

            Cirie did let Troy find her camp’s idol, failed to steal Sarah’s vote split, and did not beat Brad in the Immunity Challenge (and chose to boot Andrea instead of him). It was technically fair.

          • Damn good points, except for wasn’t Andrea on Troy patrol?

        • Mike Hirsch

          The advantages really seem to have had a negative effect on strategy, because instead of trying to anticipate every possible outcome, instead the method seems to be “play everything as safe as possible.”

      • Taako From Teevhii

        This would work if some advantages negated others. In Advantagegeddon, they all compounded, which completely erased all agency by the players and ironically undid a *gags* game-changing big move by Cirie.

        • Cirie got screwed by essentially all advantages in Game Changers, which is a great look for one of my favorite players.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            I hate to think about where we’d be if she had won GC…

          • Yeah, because I think people would see on the same plain as Michele.

          • purplerockandy

            I mean, I’d be using it to shut people up about Rob. But still, it’d be worth it.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            But wouldn’t it be different because her fourth time would’ve been against returnees?

          • purplerockandy

            Would’ve been pretty amazing if she outplayed Brad Culpepper, Tai, Troy, and a Sarah who wasn’t edited as the winner. No doubt.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            Well you’re leaving out Andrea and Zeke, plus Aubry. Honestly, Cirie getting as far as she did when everyone on that island knew her reputation and had no reason to move forward with her (unlike BRob who had invaluable experience that the newbies didn’t) might be just as (if not more) impressive as Rob’s victory anyways.

          • purplerockandy

            Sure, if you don’t believe that she was allowed to hang around because everyone knows that you’ll always have an opportunity to vote her out later (because she is no immunity threat). Sadly, I do not believe that.

          • purplerockandy

            Also, I left off Aubry to be nice. But she Game Changers Aubry totally belongs on that list.

          • Max_Jets

            Sure, why not? Even ignoring that Tai is a good player, she’s still playing against players with experience and is outplaying them. It’s not even a comparison.

          • purplerockandy

            Well, I hope this means that you consider Amber to be one of the best winners of all-time then.

          • Max_Jets

            I think it’s impressive on Amber’s part to win the game, though the target difference between her and Cirie is pretty big. But no, playing against other returning players is similar to a newbie playing against other new players. Boston Rob was in neither situation on Redemption Island.

    • Taako From Teevhii

      To address your second paragraph, we could call it the B.I.G.M.O.V.E.Z. Era. That’s

      Boy
      I
      Get
      Mystified
      Over
      Very
      Extreme
      Zadvantages

      • BadPlayer91

        upvoted for that bold, egregious Z abuse…

        • Taako From Teevhii

          Is it better or worse if I use the word “Zedvantage?”

          • BadPlayer91

            BETTER

    • gouis

      This is a good take. I like “advantage era”

    • I’m just catching up on things and wanted to chime in here. I was off of Survivor for a while and when I came back (Worlds Apart) all the buzz was about Cagayan and Tony. But what I thought was weird was that when it came to Tony the thing I heard the most about was how awesomely he used advantages and idols. I still have not seen Cagayan (I will be correcting this as soon as HvHvH is over) but that doesn’t even matter. The buzz is about big moves and using an advantage is inherently a “big move” without any thought. Production doesn’t even have to worry about casting anymore. Just throw a bunch of pretty people on the island (and no doubt there are a lot of good people on this cast) with some Super Fans and then throw advantages at them. You get Big Moves Island with zero effort.

      Some of the greatest Survivor seasons that happened (that still hold up and regularly make people’s top lists) were before they even had IDOLS never mind Advantages. But that was happenstance. There was some real garbage at that time too. But now the show doesn’t need to leave anything to chance anymore. All those seasons that production worked so hard on casting to make a good season that crumbled due to the wrong people getting far for whatever reason are erased by just adding advantages to the mix. It’s the ultimate backup plan. But that leads to bland middle of the road Survivor. We can’t even really get worked up enough to be angry about it.

  • gouis

    LOL I never expected to set @purplerockjohn:disqus off!

    Also I agree with Andy that we’re in the post Tony era. AKA the “doing nothing is the best strategy” time.

    • gouis

      Here’s the thing, we’re in a different era than what I consider the renaissance. From Philippines to Cagayan there was only one semi-dud, and the winner makes up for it.

      Then after that? Only two out of six seasons are above average. We’re not at the nadir, but we’re in that mid teens era in terms of quality.

    • Your take was bad and you should feel bad!

      • gouis

        It wasn’t even a take! It was a postulation!

    • Ms. Sweaterfan

      Or at least appearing to do nothing noteworthy until everything comes together at the end, ala Jeremy and Sarah. And whoever wins this season because no one is doing anything.

  • Other Scott

    I think it’s really weird that you guys are using just the pre-merge to get mad at the no big moves group.

    You know who’s against making big moves in the pre-merge, who always says don’t play a post merge game pre-merge? YOU GUYS. So don’t turn it around on just the other sections of the internet.

    (If there’s no big moves in the post merge, feel free to complain)

    Sorry I got grumpy about the Kaoh Rong hatred, which was a season that legitimately did have big moves

    • gouis

      Kaoh Rong is a bottom tier season.

      • Other Scott

        I love Kaoh Rong almost as much as I love Jon Misch Gouis! Don’t trigger me!

      • Super duper fan
        • Taako From Teevhii

          He’s not wrong tho. Kaoh Rong falls in the bottom 10.

          • Super duper fan
          • Taako From Teevhii
          • Super duper fan
          • Taako From Teevhii
          • Super duper fan
          • BadPlayer91

            You both deserve a standing ovation for this Jessica Lange Love Fest.

          • Taako From Teevhii
          • Super duper fan

            Without her AHS is not the same.

          • sharculese

            It stopped being a sloppy, incoherent mess that peaked in its second season because it couldn’t stop trying too hard?

          • BadPlayer91

            The sheer amount of differing views regarding the seasons of AHS is staggering. No one can really agree one which seasons are the best or worst, except for Freak Show cause it was awful. But I’ve heard so many people hate on Season 2, and then others love it, and i’m an all-around ¯_(ツ)_/¯

            But 3 is bar far my favorite. Coven for life.

          • sharculese

            Murder House: stupid campy fun

            Asylum: legitimately great horror

            Coven: meh, I checked out halfway through

            Clowncamp: I think I saw one episode

          • BadPlayer91

            I got only halfway through Hotel. But of the first four i’d go:

            Coven, Murder House, Asylum, Freak Show. And i’d put the half i’ve seen of Hotel above Freak Show, lol

          • Super duper fan

            Freak Show was awful. After Twisty the Clown was gone, it basically became a bunch of nothing.

            I also loved Coven. I do think it had some flaws, but overall I enjoyed it much more than not. Plus, on topic of Jessica Lange, her role there was my favourite from all of her seasons. But I am in the camp that absolutely loves Asylum. I would rank the seasons: 5)Freak Show, 4)Hotel, 3)Murder House, 2)Coven, 1)Asylum (I haven’t watched the last two seasons yet, but for now I’m not really itching to see them, even though I did hear some good things about Roanoke).

          • BadPlayer91

            I plan to watch them, and finish Hotel, but i’ve just got so much shit to watch, i’ve needed a break. Survivor is partially responsible for that.

          • Super duper fan

            I’m also gonna watch them eventually, but I don’t have time to do it right now, and I have other things to watch as well.

          • Blurry Denzel

            Out of the AHS seasons I’ve watched I would rank them

            1. Asylum
            2. Murder House
            3. Hotel
            4. Coven
            5. Freak Show

          • Max_Jets

            I didn’t finish Coven and only saw a couple episodes of Hotel, but I always tell people to only watch Asylum and nothing else. It might be one of my favorite seasons of television though.

          • Super duper fan

            Asylum was fantastic. Besides Freak Show, I enjoyed every season at least a fair amount, but really, I think I would also tell people to only watch Asylum.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            I think Coven is my favorite bc I like more camp than horror, and also bc I’m SUPER gay.

          • Co-signed.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            Did you see the first episode of the Trixie and Katya show? The lighting is fucked, the transitions step on the rhythm, and I’m not comfortable with how many times they say UNHhhh given that we lost that show for this. I give it 10 weeks tops.

          • sharculese

            Yeah, but it’s on Viceland, which doesn’t have enough programming to cancel anything. If Desus & Mero is still around, then this can survive.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            This did not make me feel better.

          • Shit, it started? No. Also, they can’t do both? God, 2017 sucks.

          • Streets_Ahead

            Shangela?

          • Prom King

            That was incredible. Kudos, gif masters!

          • Taako From Teevhii
          • Super duper fan
          • Taako From Teevhii

            godammit, I was holding onto that one.

          • Super duper fan
          • Hey.

          • Mike Hirsch

            I can think of 10 seasons I like less than KR.

          • Blurry Denzel

            I can write 10 season I like less than Kaoh Rong.

            1. Gabon
            2. Nicaragua
            3. Redemption Island
            4. World’s Apart
            5. Africa
            6. One World
            7. All Stars
            8. Caramoan
            9. Fiji
            10. Thailand (the fucking worst)

            There’s more I didn’t even include. Kaoh Rong is good.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            Can there an Aubry adjustment we can make for that score? (not to question the integrity of the list)

            For me, Fiji is a clear cut above Kaoh Rong. I also move Gabon higher (it’s full of fun mean garbage, whereas Kaoh Rong is full of just mean garbage). Caramoan and One World might be on the bubble for “higher than KR” status.

          • Blurry Denzel

            Gabon is shit. The worst strategic season ever. The fun of the traimwreck can only last for so long before it’s just sad. Also, I don’t find Randy’ s brand of mean to be all that much fun. He was just an asshole who occasionally says problematic shit. Corinne is just mean too. And yes, Aubry is obviously a factor. There isn’t a single character in Gabon as interesting or good as Aubry, Cydney or Tai.

          • Taako From Teevhii

            Queen Crystal Cox begs to differ.

          • Blurry Denzel

            Logic begs to differ with your statement.

          • Max_Jets

            You really think Kaoh Rong comes anywhere near as close to the mean garbage we saw in One World? Now THAT shit is unpleasant. I think I’m not as down on Kaoh Rong’s mean factor, because no one seems miserable over it. Alecia exits with her head held high, while Tai gets to deliver possibly the most satisfying revenge vote and ends up in a good place.

          • StormofCuteness

            I hate One World more, but Kaoh Rong’s bullies really upset me. Maybe I’m too sensitive, but they pretty much ruined the season for me.

          • Max_Jets

            Kaoh Rong is in my top 5 so I can get a bit defensive of it – ya know, like how I get with Trish 😉 – but I understand why it’s not for everyone.

          • Blurry Denzel

            You’re not too sensitive. That aspect of the season is definitely the black mark. It angered me at times and is more than a valid criticism. When ranking the season I do think there are a lot of good that outweighs that ugliness.

          • StormofCuteness

            Yeah, I loved Aubry, Cydney, and sometimes Tai, and maybe if Aubry had won, I wouldn’t have as much distaste for it. But she didn’t.

          • Mike Hirsch

            They may not be in the same order, but I certainly agree with you, and also there’d be more on my list as well.

          • Blurry Denzel

            My list wasn’t in any particular order. Just 10 seasons not as good as KR. It was super easy.

          • Mike Hirsch

            And yeah, Thailand is the wooooorst.

          • Streets_Ahead

            You are under selling the entertainment value of Fiji and Africa especially.

          • Blurry Denzel

            I don’t think I am just by saying Kaoh Rong is a better season.

            Fiji does have entertainment value. It also has one of favorite players ever in Earl and an all time great Survivor episode but it has the worst premerge ever. It’s have nots being miserable on repeat for a good section of the season. People think this premerge was bland, that one was actively terrible and episodes of Survivor I have no interest in ever watching again. I think Kaoh Rong is definitely more satisfying throughout.

            As for Africa, it’s fine, I guess. The fun of the that season is few compared to Kaoh Rong. The cast is fine but there are way more times in Africa where I’m bored by what I see on screen. I was never bored watching Kaoh Rong.

    • purplerockandy

      Nice.

      Although it should be noted that there’s a difference in how I think people SHOULD play and how I want people on the teevee to play. You’ll note that other than Chrissy and the idol and Jessica and the vote block, I haven’t criticized anyone’s decisions (Ryan’s way of doing it, sure, but not his decision). It might just be when people play “the right way”, it’s not that interesting. Especially if they aren’t.

      • Diego Armando

        See Sophie.

      • Other Scott

        But Andy…I thought you wanted people to play WELL – that’s the characters you like and the ones you cheer for

  • Other Scott

    In terms of Eras of Survivor, I think the two eras that really stand out to me as being a cut above the rest (era being at least 5 seasons):
    Amazon – Palau – This is because I think Vanuatu is an above average season and All Stars is a dark but still tremendously interesting season

    Cagayan – Kaoh Rong: I think every season in this stretch is at least average, and 3 of the seasons are great top 10 worthy for me.

    So therefore I think my malaise in the last year or so comes a lot from coming out of what I thought was a fantastic era of Survivor and back in to normal B- to C- seasons that we’re seeing now.

    • Max_Jets

      I think the only season since Philippines to crack my bottom 10 is Game Changers, which is why it feels like such a hot streak even when they weren’t knocking it out of the park each season.

      • Worlds Apart sends its regards

        • Max_Jets

          Barely misses the cut! I’ve got RI, Nicaragua, Gabon, All Stars, Fiji, Thailand, Africa, Australian Outback, Game Changers, One World.

          • One of those is not like the other.

          • Max_Jets

            Is it AO? Cook Islands was next.

          • Yes, and wow, we wildly disagree on those 2 seasons.

          • Streets_Ahead

            You should re-watch Fiji and Africa at a minimum. At least from an entertainment stand point rather than a strategy standpoint. Though there isn’t much Earl could do better game play wise.

          • Max_Jets

            I started watching when Cagayan was airing so everything is still pretty fresh in my mind. Fiji in particular I do not like, as I think its pre-merge is the worst stretch of episodes Survivor has had and even the post merge isn’t all good. The final tribal council is a terrible ending to the season – I think it’s the worst FTC ever – and a lot of the explanation for the tribe dynamics and negativity just isn’t included in the edit. Africa is fine – I don’t hate it (all seasons of Survivor have some merit), but it just kind of drags and I found it hard to root for Boran after the stuff with Clarence.

          • EmAndScoutInBK

            Frank sucks.

          • Super duper fan

            I have a pretty much the same bottom 10, but I would replace Gabon, Africa, and AO, with WA, Caramoan and for now Panama, but after rewatching it in the future, I think Samoa will take his place.

    • Streets_Ahead

      I’m just happy to see someone around here stick up for Vanuatu. Underrated season. Incidentally happy to see SJDS ranked well around here. Not amazing but I think it’s better than people remember like Vanuatu though not as good.

      • By The Numbers

        SJDS is kind of the modern era’s Cook Islands. Not super entertaining, but has a great winner and a list of characters who will go on to be great/entertaining in future seasons

        • Plus that post-merge is relatively solid. Once you get rid of Julie, everything kinda becomes a lot more fun.

        • Mike

          FYI, regarding Arrogate’s loss yesterday,always the same with Baffert supporters attempting to spin the fact his other horses placed, etc. However when CA Chrome placed in last yrs Classic, Baffert supporters undercut Chrome. You can’t have it both ways! Arrogate is a great horse,but no way as your “hero” states the “greatest he’s seen since Secretariat. Before my ban I stated many instances it’s absurd. Seems like I’m not wrong.

  • Crappy

    Fun podcast with a lot of good talking points. A lot have been already touched in comments but I will open a new thread with my own personal thoughts on them because why not..

    – Andy verbalized my feeling towards those who champion likes of Michele retroactively just because she won. I don’t understand why it is hard for people to comprehend that players can win this game inspite of anything they did towards that goal. Some fans definitely have this conforming need to assign credit o the winner in any way to justify the result of that season. I understand the hate towards Russell but not the campaign of designating Natalie white as some kind of genius who planned her whole game or those who can even champion the likes of Fabio as a good player.

    – I am not one of those who rank Koh Rong as a top 5 or 10 season but I have to defend it a bit here. Despite the evacuations, week by week, it was defo better than the current season. Even pre-merge likes of Alicia, Debbie and Peter were good characters while post merge Aubry plus Cydney alliance was very fun to root for. The season could get unpleasant at times but did not quite cross the limit like WA. The winner at the end was a let down but still KR is easily a mid tier season for me. Overall, I am with John that this is more of a blip and do believe this talk is inspired by the horror show that was Game changers.

    – I disagree with your take on Adam as in he did not win because he was a passive player or a safe player. Jury pretty much gave him the win because he was an active strategist, albeit one who failed at every move he tried to pull off, in contrast to Ken, who was an inactive strategist and Hannah who as per that jury was active for wrong reasons.

    – Coming to this season, it defo needs a pop factor post merge. Overall I expect this season to be a disappointment given I am not invested at all in Ryan’s or Chrissy’s story and they are pretty much the main protagonist of the season.

    – Prediction of post merge action, I think it is pretty obvious that the narrative will be Heroes + Hustlers vs Healers. I think we will see low key pagonging of Healers to start with with Joe or Mike being the X factor. After that Ashely may be the one who rebel against Ryan plus Chrissy hegemony. Also if I had to predict a winner now… Lauren. Out there but I have my reasons for it.

    • It is extremely interesting to have the KR vs HvHvH conversation now because both of their merges look like it was going to be the two “non-brainy” tribes joining forces to target the more “brainy” tribe.

    • Violina23

      I finally finished the podcast and I was just going to come here to say the same thing about Koh Rong. Even with its flaws (and they have been discussed) and a lackluster winner, it was a solidly entertaining season with solidly interesting people. It’s unfortunate that one of the least interesting people won, but I can’t discount the whole season for that.

      I think you’re spot on with your analysis of Adam. I felt like he was a genuinely good person who genuinely cared/appreciated the game and all its ups and downs. Like you said, he failed more moves than he succeeded at, and he succeeded where it counted.