Survivor Analyst Russian Roulette: Hali Ford

Welcome to Survivor Analyst Russian Roulette, where the authors of this site are randomly assigned contestants from the upcoming season of Survivor: Game Changers and must give an honest assessment of what to expect from them. Next up: Hali Ford.

Editor’s note: Since six entries didn’t feel like enough for this series, we invited some more regular contributors to the site and put them through the randomizer. Alkanarra volunteered, and perhaps learned a lesson about being careful what you wish for? (That lesson? WISHING IS AWESOME!)

These are trying times for Purple Rock’s American readers. The heated political divide between liberal and conservative continues to widen, leaks run rampant, and we actually have to have a discussion about the possibility that the President of America might be a Russian spy. If only there were some kind of top-secret agent who could infiltrate our government and set it all straight.

But America, this era of strife and uncertainty is soon to come to be at an end – or, rather, to be temporarily dismissed for a 60-minute reprieve every Wednesday – for the Greatest Patriot in American History is about to make her return to our lives and set everything right again.

Detractors will say that Hali G. Ford has no strategic credit to her name, and they would be correct. I re-watched as much of World’s Apart as I could tolerate for this assignment, and aside from being delightful at Ponderosa, Hali didn’t do much. The No Collar trio clicked together naturally, and their pre-merge game mostly involved getting rid of people who didn’t fit in rather employ any notable strategy. (Jenn, Joe, and Hali are still angry at Emma for not recognizing their coolness.) At the tribe swap, Max and Shirin’s wackiness hurt the White Collar duo’s chances more than anything Hali or Jenn did. Then the merge came and the No Collars got picked apart, one exciting idol play notwithstanding.

Because of this, a lot of people have been wondering what the hell Hali is doing on Season 34, and I say to these people in the No Collarest of fashion: “Chill out, bro.” Even Hali has admitted she has no idea why she was invited back. (Spoiler: it’s ‘cause she’s attractive.)

 

In a court of law, this is what is known as “evidence”.

You see, the anti-Hali constituency’s greatest failing is in caring about her credentials. Her most game-changing moves were getting drunk enough at the merge to support a tribe name that would make our Founding Fathers proud and then giving an off-kilter, pro-American tribal speech. They claim she has no strategy, and they are absolutely right. Hali isn’t strategic, but she doesn’t need to be.

So why be excited by Hali coming into season 34? Because like our bleak political landscape, Hali offers something this season will desperately need: positivity. We’ve seen All-Star seasons bring out hyper competitive streaks. These players are going for more than money: they want a chance to prove themselves and establish a show-based legacy (Editor’s note: …but mostly money). Survivor will need lightheartedness to fall back on, and Hali offers that in spades.

As for as her odds, Hali’s biggest advantage is that she is no one’s target and never should be. There are more strategic threats, more physical threats, and, perhaps most importantly, there are players with legacies that their competitors will want to quash. So long as she can keep from playing too hard and making herself a target, Hali could survive for a long time with little effort. In a nutshell: no one cares about Hali Ford. And, to her credit, this is something she recognizes in her entrance interview:

“I think I have it pretty easy. I don’t think people are expecting a lot from me. So what I need to make sure is that I don’t, um, get too confident people don’t have their eye on me, but as far as I can tell, I’m more under the radar than most of the people out here. So I intend to stay that way, while slowly leading them to their death.”

Anyway, here’s Wonderwall.

Best-case scenario

All that being said, Hali’s odds of actually winning are low. Likability is one thing, but respectability is another, and that free-spirited energy that got her cast in Worlds Apart also makes her appear as though she isn’t a serious contender. Her competitors will think that she shouldn’t be there, and with such large egos I can see that keeping them from voting for her at the end.

Her ceiling is making it to final tribal council, and it’s not unrealistic. From my purely academic perusal of her cast photos, she looks ripped as hell and should avoid the “cut the dead weight” early phase, if that even happens on a returnee season. For Hali, it’s all a matter of sitting back and going with the flow since she should never be a target. Winning will require her making some unexpected moves at the end and relying on her strong social game, but more realistically, I see her maybe getting a vote or two at final tribal. She’ll be the runner-up next to a more active player (or a sexist jury that just votes for the man).

Worst-case scenario

She tries to play the game too fast and talks to the wrong people. No one wants to come out as a power player too early, and because they don’t think she deserves to be there, her tribe makes her the safe vote. She’s blindsided in episode three after having given only one confessional all season. We already know how she’ll react.

TFW you’re on a season with Dan, Rodney, Carolyn, and Will.

Most likely scenario

Post-merge, her competitors will realize that nobody dislikes her. She won’t have pissed anyone off, and that will make her dangerous. I imagine a savvier player will use her name as bait to keep themselves alive for a vote. It will be one of those out-of-left-field episodes where in the middle of a grudge match between two alliances, they both inexplicably target her and the show doesn’t even try to hide the result prior to tribal. AV Club will re-institute grading just to give it a C-.

As a closing argument, I’d like to add this extremely low-quality rap video that Hali made. It covers Constitutional search and seizure rights. Malcolm is in it for some reason. It’s both terrible and brilliant. If that doesn’t win this crowd over to Hali Ford then I don’t know what will.

Read the rest!

Other Game Changers preseason contestant content:

Alkanarra

Alkanarra

A casual fan from Pearl Islands to Guatemala, Alkanarra's inappropriate crush on Boston Rob brought him back just in time for Redemption Island. Since then he's been mainlining this addiction so much that he probably needs help, you guys.


Favorite Seasons: China, Philippines, Palau, Pearl Islands

Favorite Players: Penner, Jenn Brown, Boston Rob, Courtney, Sandra
Alkanarra

Latest posts by Alkanarra (see all)

  • Black Dynamite

    Hali seems very easy to get along with but won’t offer too much in strategy. I see her going far as the main alliance’s number. I want her to align with future winner Andrea and Malcolm to form the Eye Candy Alliance.

    My Prediction: Finalist.

    Previous Predictions
    Pre Merge Boots
    Caleb
    Tai
    Sandra
    Debbie (hopefully first)

    Post Merge Boots
    Varner
    Cirie
    Troy
    Sarah
    Ozzy

    Final Boot
    Malcolm

    Finalists
    Zeke

    Winner
    Andrea

    • Alkanarra

      My pick four would love that, which is probably why it won’t happen. We can’t have good things.

      • Black Dynamite

        Last couple of seasons have been disastrous for Pick 4. It’s about time for things the other way and we end up with tons of strong Pick 4 teams down the stretch. At least that’s what I hope for as I have 3 very popular picks and Zeke.

        • Alkanarra

          Because it’s a returnee season I couldn’t help but pick people I like rather than what makes sense. If I tank this year then whatever – at least I know this time who I’m rooting for rather than just guessing based off of a photo and a small blurb from CBS.

          • BadPlayer91

            idk the numbers on Cambodia, but you would think that Pick 4 in a returnee season would be a bit more predictable? I mean, in terms of data, you have WAY more to go off of in an all returnee season, so by normal logic you should be able to predict how thing might play out better.

            Then again, as a result of it being a returnee season, players are playing so hard, and chaos seems to be a norm (Kass or not), thus even if your predictions are sound, it could mean nothing come the show…

            Summation: We’re all fucked.

          • Alkanarra

            I didn’t play during Cambodia, but there’s a 0% chance I would have picked Jeremy, Wentworth, Keith, or Kimmi. I probably would’ve banked hard on Pei-Gee. I’m not very good at the predicting thing.

          • I had Jeremy, Wentworth, and Keith on my Pick 4….Kimmi was my 5th pick.

          • Alkanarra

            Pft. It doesn’t count when you’re using your witch magic.

            The fact that my pick 4 is almost the total opposite of your pick 4 bodes very, very poorly for me. At least I’ll get my Andrea points.

          • I didn’t mention who was my 4th…Varner
            Also, Cambodia falls outside of my witch era. Maybe that’s why I don’t like as well as everyone else here.

          • Second most popular pick for Cambodia? Varner. (Wentworth was #1, though that was probably partly influenced by her posting very skinny pics on social media after returning.)

          • Black Dynamite

            I chose my Pick 4 based off this completely insane scenario I’ve been predicting. At this point, I’m so all in on this narrative I’ve been creating that it will be major crash if I’m very inaccurate.

          • Maritimer

            I also went with people I like (though ones I like AND thought would do well). I’d rather not have to cheer for people I dislike to do well in fantasy. Say, no way I’m picking Troy even though he likely goes deep

        • Excuse me? I have had wonderful Pick 4 teams.

          • Black Dynamite

            I meant more as a group, it has been disastrous. You are next level.

          • That feels almost as good as being told that I am consistently OTTP.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            Ummm… I said your edit is consistently OTTP.

          • That still means me, so I will take it.

    • gouis

      Ugh now I want that alliance. Can they also have a polyamorous marriage?

      • Black Dynamite

        That would be amazing. Eye Candy Alliance till death do them part.

    • Andrea, Zeke, and Hali in the final tribal council? With Malcolm in the 4th place “best player to not win” spot? Interesting. If it were those three in the final, I can see Andrea getting the landslide victory.

      • Black Dynamite

        I guess I can go into some of my thinking as my predictions become clearer. I see Malcolm, Andrea, Zeke and a yet to be written about person being the core of the majority alliance. Hali is one of their numbers that people aren’t too worried about. I think Zeke takes the heat as being the more “two faced” member. Going into Final Immunity, Malcolm will be in the driver’s seat to win but also the biggest threat. I’m betting on anyone but him winning the challenge. I agree that Andrea wins easily in that particular final three setup. Also, I have no life if that wasn’t already obvious.

        • BadPlayer91

          You have too much life, is the truth. You’re filled with life.

        • Purplerockmatt

          he especially wont win the final challenge because it’ll be the same one that doomed him in Philippines

          • purplerockandy

            LOL at the idea that the show sets up a scenario to ensure Malcolm is taken out at 4.

          • Black Dynamite

            If there is a Malcolm, Cirie, Sandra, Troy final four, the producers will take a crowbar to Troy’s leg, Nancy Kerrigan style.

    • Kemper Boyd

      If you get this right I will send you a gift from the UK. Pick something British and it can be yours!

      • purplerockandy

        DUDE! Make it a chocolate orange!! Which I assume is Britains’ number one export after late night talk show hosts.

        • Kemper Boyd

          Jaffa Cakes beat a Chocolate Orange man.

          • Mike Hirsch
          • Kemper Boyd

            and to answer it’s a cake not a biscuit the high court rules on it.

          • BadPlayer91

            WORD

      • Black Dynamite

        Do I have to get all 20 right or just a majority plus the final setup?

        • Kemper Boyd

          I’m not mean but everyone has to go when you say they will, so anywhere in Pre-merge, any where in post merge, then top 4 as is (except in case of two person FTC, where either “finalist” who comes 3rd will be counted as correct and 4th place will too).

          • Black Dynamite

            One more question then. I will have 7 Pre Merge Boot predicted, what if they merge later? Do I automatically lose?

          • Alkanarra

            I love how seriously you’re taking this.

          • Kemper Boyd

            He’s taking it seriously? postage to the US is not cheap…

          • Black Dynamite

            Of course. There is a lot of pride in my predictions.

          • Alkanarra

            Man, if even one of my pick four makes the merge I’ll be the proudest guy around. You just gotta set your ambitions real, real low.

            And/or desperately need to rebound from a Paul/CeCe drafting season.

          • sharculese

            There was nothing wrong with drafting Paul. There was just something wrong with that cast.

          • gouis

            Stop trying to make Paul happen.

          • sharculese

            Paul already happened. He exists outside of and prior to what we percieve as reality.

            Hes like the Matrix if the Matrix knew where to get really good weed.

          • Kemper Boyd

            No, I will allow you to nominate a buffer zone.

          • Black Dynamite

            That is fair. Once I reveal all my picks, I’ll work on that.

          • Kemper Boyd

            the buffer zone will be 2 people, as they will only merge with between 11-13 jurors.

      • Violina23

        REAL Cadbury eggs. And a copy of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone”.

        (Best gift my husband got me when he had a business trip to London. And not even that pricy!)

  • BadPlayer91

    As much as I’d love for this season’s cast to be 100% amazing, game changing, unbelievable players, I completely understand why Hali and some others (FFGCSDT) are included. I agree with you that Hali brings a potential reprieve from the all-in, total war players. I also think it’s just good business for Survivor. Let’s say they got 20 amazing GAME CHANGING players to sign on to return, do they put them all in the same season and then have zero amazing GAME CHANGING players set up for future seasons, or do they keep some of the 20 on reserve and get some filler to pad things?

    I guess it kinda depends on how hard it is to get 20 returnees together. Maybe they just couldn’t find anyone else who was GAME CHANGING that wanted to play right now, and Hali was like ‘yeah brah, no probs!”

    • gouis

      The difference is that Hali is actively pleasant and SDT is just a lump on a log.

      • purplerockandy

        With Hali, there’s enough left to the imagination that you can tell yourself “she had a lot of unrealized potential”. With SDT, she had every chance in the world to do something to earn our attention, and actively avoided doing those things.

        I’m much more comfortable with odd choices being early boots than late ones.

        • gouis

          Counterpoint: Parv 1.0 was a late boot.

          • purplerockandy

            And she got more interesting the longer that season went.

          • gouis

            Meh I just remember she was only focused on gutting Penner like a fish.

          • Black Dynamite

            Despite the lack of screen time I was pretty captivated by Parv 1.0. She had the one of a kind charm from the jump. Thought she had set herself up to contend for a win before the Mutiny/Penner’s second flip.

          • Maritimer

            I think so too. Flipping the tribe on JP was spectacular play. She seemed to be the Queen of her alliance by the merge and the likely winner if they had won out

          • Black Dynamite

            Yeah, at the point of the mutiny she had deep connections with all the women plus Nate and Adam. I could actually see a bit of a Mirconesia scenario where Nate and Adam take the fall and Parvati is in the final three with two women.

          • Maritimer

            I think so too. Though the temptation to take Adam as a goat would have to be pretty strong. Problem is, then you probably have to cut Candice at some point, since they would assume a final 2

          • Kemper Boyd

            Parv 1.0 had a active personality which is how she came back (same as Andrea).

  • gouis

    Good arguments. I agree that the “game changer” rhetoric is garbage and that Hali is a good addition to this cast personality wise.

    • BadPlayer91

      I agree. I wouldn’t be surprised if the ‘game changer’ element was an after thought. Like, they got 20 returnees together to make a great cast, and then they said “what’s the angle,” and this was what they came up with to spin a promotional narrative.

      • Assistant Dragon Slayer

        I agree that it sounds like an afterthought cooked up during or even after the casting process, but it also seems like something Probst will really lean into at tribal.

      • Supposedly, it was always the theme, but I call BS on that because of how many people were in contention.

        • BadPlayer91

          I mean, either they admit to casting a season then trying to figure out how to best market it (which is logical, but some people don’t like?) or they admit to thinking Hali and FFGCSDTFSS are ‘game changers’ lol

          • Or they admit to the fact that Sierra was a last minute substitute for Natalie Anderson, but they would never do that.

    • Maritimer

      100% the cast needs a Hali type. All star seasons always do, with mixed results. Based on past returnee seasons, one of SDT and Hali will do well and one will be pre-merge

      • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

        My money is on SDT, as she seems to have a willingness to work with anyone. Hali, not so much.

    • Roswulf

      I think it’s less descriptive, more a way to prod the players to make the game more active.

      Which works mostly on doofuses. I’m pretty sure Hali will chuckle at the idea of being a game changer, and then set to playing a low-key game based mostly on charisma.

      • Assistant Dragon Slayer

        Yeah, but in the previous three all-returnees seasons, a lot of the players reaaaally bought into the season theme, mostly to their detriment. The closer they can get to “People Playing Survivor Again” as the theme for an all-returnees season, the better.

        • Roswulf

          I don’t agree- I think both Second Chances and HvV managed to coax better television out of their casts with the prod of their themes. It may not have benefited the doofuses who committed most heavily to the marketing, but it benefited the show.

          The tragicomedy of calling Coach a villain alone…

        • I think HvV is interesting because you have a lot of players buying into it sure, but you also have a lot of players who are trying to change their reputation like JT, Jerri, and Parvati.

          As for Cambodia…
          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/0ee6a96e02f87f2df95090151d087eac8d3db57c99499f2dadef0522eda722d5.jpg

          I don’t have enough energy tonight.

  • purplerockandy
    • gouis

      Holy shit she sometimes takes off her clothes. That sure does change her inherent beauty.

    • Kemper Boyd

      Some of us are at work thanks. I mean some of us *cough* me *cough* were told today they didn’t get an interview for the job they are currently doing despite sending the exact same application they sent a month ago when they last go interviewed for their job and really aren’t trying right now. But they may still be worried about the sort of gifs others can see on their screens.

      • sharculese

        Some of us *cough*me*xough* are sitting in a pizza place trying to figure out how many times I have to come here before I can ask them to takw their spiciest wings and like double that, cause these arent hot enough.

        Having a non-traditional career rules.

        • Kemper Boyd

          I want out so badly. Being told “hey you aren’t good enough for this job but please continue to give your all as we hire your replacement” really brings a girl down. Also don’t tell me at 10am, tell me at 4.30 so I do some actual work that day.

          • sharculese

            Awwww. *hugs*

          • Kemper Boyd

            Sucked so hard. I interviewed in January with a heinous cold and “wasn’t appointable” despite being appointable the next day for a higher salary role where the only difference was that my boss who did this shortlisting wasn’t on the panel.

      • EmAndScoutInBK

        Kemper, I’m so sorry. That’s messed up. I wish I could actual hug you.

        • Kemper Boyd

          Complaining helps and the fact my colleagues all think it’s bullshit. Got two interviews next week.

          • EmAndScoutInBK

            GOOD. Knock ’em dead.

    • Alkanarra

      WHY DOES THE GIF HAVE A DOT IN IT!?!

      … why is that what I immediately focused on?

    • Kemper Boyd

      Also I feel Hali here if I’m being overly into looks is kind of a butter face. Sure, she’s got a good body and looks good from behind, but I looked that good from behind at 24 (a lot of people do). Andrea is prettier in the face.

      • gouis

        Watch out Andy coming for ya!

        • Kemper Boyd

          She’s not unattractive but I feel like I can name at least 10-15 women on Survivor of the same type who are prettier.

          • gouis

            No I meant with thirst

          • Kemper Boyd

            Oh I don’t look as good from behind at 30 as I did at 23. I ain’t bad though. Solid legs.

          • gouis

            Preach it sister

          • Kemper Boyd

            The metabolism change is a cruel cruel thing

          • gouis

            I’m 33 and eat better than ever. Still gain weight every year

          • Kemper Boyd

            I lost 9 pounds in 3 months over the summer but I’ve stalled at 11 pounds lost since September, as the days start getting longer I can go running again. I also eat better than ever and I’m making very small gains currently. Very small.

      • purplerockandy

        I actually prefer Hali’s face to her body.

        Also, this is probably the last post where I talk about this.

        • Kemper Boyd

          It probably should be…
          She is what my friends and I call “plain of the face”. Nothing offensive but just whatever.

          • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

            Hali is plain of the everything. Honestly, aside from her being a big patriot, I remember absolutely nothing about Plain. At least FFGGSDTQI was herding goats and competent in challenges. I have absolutely no idea if Egg has any strategic or challenge strengths. Even socially, I think Shirin has said she’s nice but closed off to people not in her alliance (though this may be because S30 had so many horrible people in the cast).

          • purplerockandy
          • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

            Is there supposed to be something in this picture?

          • the sky is falling

            It’s some kind of fence with ropes wrapped around it.

      • This is how I feel about Garrett from Cagayan.

        • Assistant Dragon Slayer

          You looked like Garrett from behind at 24?

    • gouis

      Also is her underwear see-through or just dirty?

      • purplerockandy

        ZOOM! ENHANCE!

        • gouis

          So…. did it work?

  • Kemper Boyd

    Hali is an interesting case. I think she has enough personality to come back (even if we saw most of it in Ponderosa videos) but was still over shadowed by Jenn and Shirin personality wise in her season and ATGGFFSDT in being a nothing attractive woman player.

    • Alkanarra

      Yeah, don’t get me wrong, as delightful as Hali is in a quirky way, Jenn *should* be a returnee. Though I stand by my stance that this season just needs pleasant people like Hali and Tai to offset the tryhards, and Jenn’s too antagonistic to help with that.

      • Kemper Boyd

        Jenn needs to be cast in a HvV sort of situation where arseholes are playing it up. She needs to be around the worst so she can be her snarky best.

        • purplerockandy

          Except that when Jenn was around the actual worst, she basically shut down.

          • Kemper Boyd

            But her confessionals were sublime.

        • Maritimer

          Jenn basically needs to be the Courtney of HvV2. Or have both of them together

  • Kemper Boyd

    @Alkanarra:disqus why are you wearing a suit?

    • gouis

      I had a blazer in mine. We’re just classy

      • Black Dynamite

        I chose a leather jacket because it seemed to be the easiest way to symbolize that I’m the coolest motherfucker in the room.

        • Wait, the striped button-down *doesn’t* do that?

          • Black Dynamite

            I had the button-down under the leather jacket. I also needed to symbolize that I’m the most well dressed mother fucker in the room.

          • Touche.

      • I mean I was wearing a school uniform, so that’s classy…maybe.

    • Look the part, be the part, motherfucker.

      • Black Dynamite

        Yes to the Wire reference!! We need more of those. Greatest show ever.

        • purplerockandy

          The internet certainly does have a shortage of white writers referencing The Wire.

        • When we’re searching for a new TV show, my wife will say things like, “Try to find something good like The Wire.” Oh, try to find something equivalent to one of the best 2-3 shows ever made? Sure. Should be easy.

          • sharculese

            So… youre watching Cheers, then?

          • I love Cheers, and it’s remarkable how well that show holds up. But she wants dramas, not comedies.

            Still one of my favorite jokes ever: “What are you up to, Norm?” “My ideal weight if I were eleven feet tall.”

          • Mike Hirsch

            “Don’t say Cochise to this dog.”

          • Mike Hirsch

            Justified. Then, Sneaky Pete.

          • sharculese

            Yes, definitely go with the second best show where Timothy Olyphant is a hardass lawman who makes his own rules.

          • Mike Hirsch

            Deadwood is great but where’s the damn movie! They said HBO greenlit it!

          • We’ve seen Justified. I hadn’t heard much on Sneaky Pete yet, but I’ll consider that an endorsement.

          • Black Dynamite

            I also endorse Sneaky Pete.

          • Mike Hirsch

            Same showrunner. At least 5 people from Justified show up. Very similar feel to Justified in terms of the dialogue and energy. Judge Phelan from The Wire is a main cast member.

          • the sky is falling

            LOST?

            **ducks and runs to hide in Swan Station**

          • Sigh.

            For me, LOST just suffered from unrealistic expectations (which I think the showrunners had helped to fuel). The finale was good, fun TV, but the last season was not very fulfilling.

          • the sky is falling

            Fully agreed. In my mind the show ended at the end of season 5. I feel like the discussion about the show would be much different had the series ended there.
            The sideways gimmick was a swing and a miss.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            My wife and I were really excited about Hiroyuki Sanada being cast for the final season (she’s Japanese and we lived in Japan at the time), but man what a nothingburger that whole Dogen storyline turned out to be.

          • Violina23

            LOST was intriguing, but when:
            A) they ran out of interesting things to say about the characters using the flashback/sideways format
            B) it became clear that they had no real end game in sight

            … it felt like a death march to the end. It just fizzles. My entire reaction by the end was just “meh” because I knew they weren’t going to bother explaining anything.

          • the sky is falling

            They explained most of the things, but they were stupid explanations. Would have been better to leave them fully unexplained. Season 6 was indeed a death march, But the Richard Alpert episode was as strong as anything else in the show.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            We discussed The Leftovers a little upthread. The show runner is Damon Lindelof, and possibly as atonement for LOST, he and the show itself have made abundantly clear that the central mystery of the show is never, ever going to be solved. I strongly recommend the show, although you have to have a pretty high tolerance for unremittingly grim TV (it lightens up a bit about halfway into the first season).

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            I can’t really let a discussion of LOST go by without mentioning my other go-to at the time, Battlestar Galactica. Did you watch it? I loved it, and it probably holds up. Like LOST, it wrote some narrative checks it couldn’t cash (although not nearly as badly as LOST), and the finale infuriated the super-fans (although in this case the super-fans are wrong, wrong, wrong).

          • I watched some of Battlestar and thought that it was pretty good. I’m aware of the ending even though I never saw it, and you’re the first defender of the finale that I’ve encountered. At best it’s gotten a shrug from other people I know that liked the show.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            I wouldn’t say I loved it, more like, as you say of the LOST finale, it was good, fun TV–a suitable sendoff for some beloved characters. I thought the nerd rage about both finales was absurdly overblown (unlike Dexter and HIMYM, both of which deserved it based on what I’ve heard). Both finales pissed people off because the show didn’t provide rational explanations of their supernatural/spiritual elements, but in the case of BSG, the show never promised any explanations and signposted all along the way along that you should be taking the supernatural/spiritual elements at face value.

          • the sky is falling

            Main thing that bugs me about the rage over LOST finale is that I’m not sure what people expected in terms of answers. If J.J.Abrams, Cuse and Lindelof had walked out after the show for a Q+A explaining things in more detail, would that have made the show better, probably not.
            I disagree with where they chose to take it, with the Kumbaya church and the absurd island plug, but it was in the spirit of the show, and the first 3-5 seasons were innovative television at the time.
            Can’t think of many or any shows with a more unique premise or mythology, past Dr. Who or Fringe.

            p.s. apologies for the Lost rant, I ran 2 lost blogs while it was on and cant resist any opportunity to pimp the show.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            The Americans. Fargo.

          • Alkanarra

            Definitely Fargo.

          • Black Dynamite

            Only 11 days until the new season of The Americans. I’m very excited.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            Me too, but I’m even more excited about Carrie Coon being on Fargo. She is just killing it to death on The Leftovers but nobody watches that show.

          • Black Dynamite

            I loved the second season of The Leftovers. Carrie Coon is fucking amazing. Didn’t even know she will be in Fargo. That’s great

          • Purplerockmatt

            Me and Andy are both huge Leftovers fans. we annoy the rest of the staff with our discussions on it

          • Black Dynamite

            Why aren’t they watching?

          • Purplerockmatt

            we annoyed them too much

          • Purple Rock Emma

            There are several shows I won’t watch for this reason.

          • purplerockandy

            For instance, she refuses to watch Buffy.

            GET HER Y’ALL.

          • Black Dynamite

            That’s fucking insanity. Buffy is amazing.

          • Alkanarra

            Buffy all the way. The only way we’ll get Emma over her “doesn’t like being barraged by suggestions” thing is obviously just to crank it up a notch. She’ll never expect it!

          • Purple Rock Emma

            The thing Matt and Andy conveniently forget is that I watched about a season or so of Buffy while it aired (not the first season) and genuinely have no desire to go back to it.

          • Black Dynamite

            I’m sure I wouldn’t be the first one to tell you that you should give it another try. So I won’t do that. There’s so much television options out there that you shouldn’t just jump on something if you have no desire for it.

          • Violina23

            Buffy is fabulous, Emma. The praying mantis alliance wouldn’t lie to you.

            (Although there is a pretty terrible season 1 episode involving a praying mantis that you might want to skip)

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            I tried to talk @purplerockjohn:disqus into it a while back. I couldn’t get him to stick with it to the big Nora Dunn episode. To be fair, the show’s a grim slog to that point (then it becomes a tiny bit less grim).

          • Black Dynamite

            It took awhile for me to enjoy the show. A lot of patience but worth it.

          • Purplerockmatt

            its a very idiosyncratic show. more than most i recognize that if this is not your thing it is definitely not your thing

          • Right. I was just watching each episode and thinking “Ugh. This is depressing. Why am I still doing this? I watch TV to be entertained.”

          • Violina23

            Love the Americans. The first few seasons were a slow burn, but last season has been the best yet.

          • We watch The Americans. It’s going to be fun watching it this season knowing that 30 years later, the Russians will win.

          • Diego Armando

            Hannibal.

      • Mike Hirsch

        Fool, if it weren’t for Sergei here, you and your cousin would be cadaverous motherfuckers.

    • Alkanarra

      I’m fancy like that.

      Well, that and 40% of my work time is spent here, so I thought I’d give them a *little* recognition. I also tried photoshopping a turtle head onto my avatar and boy was that some nightmare fuel.

      • Kemper Boyd

        To be fair I am wearing a shirt in mine…

        • …does that mean you’re usually shirtless?

          • Kemper Boyd

            a shirt is a thing with a collar. It’s not my fault your language is simplistic and wrong.

        • sharculese

          In mine Im wearing a shirt i actually own. And am wearing right. Sadly, that site dont gave ‘the sickest purple paisley tie on motherfucking earh tied in a half-windsor and tugged down insoucantly’ as an accessory choice.

        • Diego Armando

          I probably own a short-sleeve polo in the color I picked for mine.

  • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

    I just read Wigler’s Debbie interview (she’s on my fantasy team; I wouldn’t have read it otherwise), AND SHE DOESN’T UNDERSTAND HOW TO PLAY ROCK PAPER SCISSORS. There’s no hierarchy because the system is cyclic. And the entire interview reads as some manifestation of Debbie’s latent sexism in how she’s idolizing the brawny muscly guys and talking down about “beauty contest” women. Essentially, she’s listing all the Rocks (top of her hierarchy) as men and all the Papers (bottom) as women. I don’t understand. I hope she goes first. But I doubt it.

    • gouis

      Good ole rock nothing beats that

      • Mike Hirsch

        Damn, was just about to say this. Ah well, I will anyway. Good ole rock, nothing beats that!

        • Assistant Dragon Slayer

          /typing cat gif

      • Purple Rock Emma

        Poor Debbie, always picks rock.

        • gouis

          How does this not have the equivalent # of likes? That’s the whole point.

          • Purple Rock Emma

            I appreciate your support, nonetheless.

          • sharculese

            Whqt comment thread in the history of ever has featured the person who knew the response line getting as many upvotes as the person who initiated the reference?

    • sharculese

      Jesus Christ Debbie play some fucking Fire Emblem. It comes free on your phone now.

      • gouis

        Debbie would pick all axe users

        • Diego Armando

          And she likely wouldn’t even grab a Sword Slayer.

    • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

      There’s more: “I don’t know what it is that makes women think they have to rip apart other women. … So I do want a woman to win, and that woman is me. I’m latching onto the guys to get there.”

      Essentially saying, “I don’t understand why the women can’t work together, so screw the women, I’m working with the guys.” YOU’RE PART OF THE PROBLEM DEBRA

      • sharculese

        Guys we may have to consider the possibility that Debbie is a moron.

        Like even more than we did during kaoh rong.

        • Kemper Boyd

          So glad she was my last pick on my 5 team fantasy league

          • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

            I got saddled with her, and I am not glad. I maybe prefer Troy over Debbie. Even though Wigler’s interviews with everyone else make it sound like most of the cast will get along with her, I like for my fantasy team to not include players I’m actively rooting against.

          • Kemper Boyd

            This was sarcasm…

          • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

            Whoosh, I should have picked up on that. My Debra frustrations still rage on.

          • EmAndScoutInBK

            Debbie v. Troy. Tough one. They both hate women.

          • EmAndScoutInBK

            I still hate Troy more.

        • Maritimer

          Remember the brief time we were all on the “Debbie is a secret genius” bandwagon around the Liz boot? Yeah, I regret that

          • purplerockandy

            I thought we agreed to never speak of that.

            Turns out, getting rid of Liz was less of a cagey move by Debbie, and more about how attractive women anger her.

          • sharculese

            To be fair, Liz was actively sucking at the social game. But so actively that Debbue earns no credit for noticing.

      • Kemper Boyd

        The women worked together pretty well in KR, 3 of the top 4 were women and Cydney got to final 4 with her two closest allies who were both women… I don’t think women are the problem here.

      • Max_Jets

        She’s so bitter about her Kaoh Rong elimination that she is confident going in the opposite direction will work.

    • sharculese

      Suffering Game ep 7:

      some cool stuff happened and merle did a thing right for once, but does any of that matter when HOLY SHIT THE RED ROBE IS BARRY BLUEJEANS

      • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

        Ditto kept saying that things were going to pop off in the back half of the ep, and with five minutes left, they were just walking around the Felicity Wilds, and I was like, “wtf, I thought shit was gonna pop off,” AND THEN IT DONE POPPED. BARRY IS BACK!

        • sharculese

          Griffn said trust me and I trusted him.

          But this episode really drove home what I didnt like about this arc. Wonderland is a cool idea if youre trying to build a super-hard post endgame dungeon, but its not right for goofs and creativity. And I think Grjffin realized it towards the end and was just trying to get things over with in a really forced way.

          Clever ideas aside, wooden Magnus should not have been allowed to essentially one hit kill the final boss. But it was time for this shit to be over.

          Im not sure if the next episode is gonna be a Lunar Interlude or the end of this arc, but overall Im feeling like this goes above Here There Be Gerblins and below everything else. Still, Im atoked as fuck for whatever is coming next, and good job on Griffin for realizing a two week wait was unacceptable in this case.

          • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

            I think they’ll be back at the base, but in an infiltration/heist scenario. Lucretia is no friend of a Red Robe. So not quite a Lunar Interlude, but definitely not part of TSG arc.

            And also, I was disappointed to find out that Griffin misspoke re: the next episode. Apparently he tweeted that it’s the normal two-week schedule.

            Also, if we’re ranking arcs,
            Murder on the Rockport Limited
            Eleventh Hour
            Petals to the Metal
            Crystal Kingdom
            Here be Gerblins
            Suffering Game

            Here be Gerblins gave us Barry and Klaarg. I don’t think I was charmed by anyone in TSG.

          • sharculese

            Well then, fuck himfor getting my hopes up.

            My ranking is

            Crystal Kingdom
            Eleventh Hour
            Murder on the Rockport Limited
            Petals to the Metal
            Suffering Game
            Here There be Gerblins

            Ill admit Crystal Kingdom has emotional meaning for me, because ir was my comfort binge after the election, but also I think it hits just the right balance of mythology and fun dungeon shit.

            I loved Edward and Lydia, but more than that I rate TSG over HtbG because the latter is so much them figuring out what this project is that the fun doesnt come through as much.

            Plus, one of the things this show has revealed is that Griffin is a masterful fantasy story teller. If he wrote a novel, I would buy it. The arc that’s based on the 5E starter campaign lacks his special sauce for obvious reasons.

  • purplerockandy

    Here’s my shallow, attractiveness rankings for the season:

    Ladies:
    1. Hali
    2. Andrea
    3. Michaela
    4. Sierra Dawn Thomas
    5. Ciera

    Dudes:
    1. Malcolm
    2. I mean, I guess Caleb works out, right?
    3-4. Get back to me once you’ve lost some weight, JT and Ozzy
    5. Jeff Varner has pretty eyes and used to be a stone cold fox.
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/990aa05a6846289ee30c544380ba79a72b96943c9f043f6205e7ee8697f91544.jpg

    • Kemper Boyd

      The male eye candy is very lacking this season.

      • purplerockandy

        Indeed. My apologies to y’all.

      • BadPlayer91

        Agreed. Malcolm is basically it IMO. Caleb looked pretty good on KR, but his press photos for this season were not as becoming.

        • Kemper Boyd

          But the facial hair!

          • BadPlayer91

            WE HAVE TO OVERCOME THESE THINGS.

          • BadPlayer91

            Maybe, like, he’ll get too close to a fire and singe it off?

    • Mike Hirsch

      I’m rather attracted to Aubry.

      • Kemper Boyd

        Aubry is super high on my all time “island hot” rankings about 5 episodes into KR it was like “bam! here’s Aubry”

        • Mike Hirsch

          I would have been a hopeless puppy dog around her if we had attended the same college at the same time and moved in the same social circles, or lived on the same floor…a lot of pieces would have had to fall into place, but I would have been all “you’re cool and pretty” with twinkling stars in my eyes.

      • Alkanarra

        Aubry looked fantastic at the reunion.

    • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

      Why isn’t Troyzan ranked here?

    • Black Dynamite

      For my rankings

      Ladies
      1. Andrea
      2. Aubry
      3. Michaela
      4. Hali
      5. FFSDT

      Gentlemen
      1. Malcolm
      2. Ozzy
      3. JT
      4. Caleb
      5. Zeke

      • Alkanarra

        As a fella who considers Ciera the second prettiest contestant they’ve ever had (Colleen forever), your two lists are bumming me out.

        • Black Dynamite

          Ciera is incredibly pretty. The ladies side is full of eye candy this season.

        • EmAndScoutInBK

          She wasn’t on my list either, but not because she’s not attractive – just because the other ladies are very attractive also.

        • the sky is falling

          Upvote for Colleen mention.

    • EmAndScoutInBK

      Varner definitely was a hottie. He doesn’t cause confusion for me the way that Ken does, but I can objectively see the hotness.

      I’d put Andrea first because she looks the most like my fiancee, but I’d probably get along with Hali really well because of our shared profession. So: Andrea, Hali, Michaela, Aubry, SDT. Though honestly, I go back and forth between Hali, Michaela, and Aubry because I find them all attractive both via looks and personality for various reasons. The list would probably change on different days.

      For guys… uh… Malcolm first, definitely, but other than that, I don’t think I can judge because I’ve never understood why JT is attractive/if he is attractive? I’ll plead gay on that one.

      • Black Dynamite

        We have the same five ladies on our lists. That Brooklyn alliance staying strong.

      • Maritimer

        JT is strange in that I go back and forth between attractive/unattractive on him in his previous seasons moment to moment so I don’t really know. Cast photo JT for this season is not attractive

        • purplerockandy

          Cast photo JT looks like lil’ buddy from The Big Bang Theory.

    • I don’t have a strong preference for any of the top women over the others. They’re all roughly equivalent for me.

      That crowd of guys is rough, though.

      • Maritimer

        Desperately rough. I couldn’t get past a top 3 and enen then it would have to include Caleb and washed-up looking JT. I haven’t found Ozzy attractive since CI

    • Assistant Dragon Slayer

      Ah c’mon now, if you’re doing this at all commit to it:

      Ladies:
      1. Andrea
      2. Michaela
      3. Hali
      (gap)
      4. Aubry
      5. FFSDT
      6. Ciera
      (gap)
      7. Sarah
      8. Sandra
      9. Cirie
      10. Debbie

      Gents:
      1. Malcolm
      2. JT
      3. Caleb
      4. Ozzy
      5. Tony
      6. Tai
      7. Brad
      8. Varner
      9. Zeke
      10. Troyzan

      • Super duper fan

        From the ladies (aside from Hali not being number one of course) I would change places of Ciera/Sierra and Sandra/Cirie. From Gents I would put Brad below Zeke. Aside from all of this good rankings

    • Max_Jets

      Varner might be at the top of the list for me, and he was like 7th in Cambodia.

  • Mike Hirsch

    I’m not exactly excited about Hali, but I’m curious how she does amongst a fairly sizeable group of people that I like. I can easily see any of your scenarios happening.

  • Kemper Boyd

    Guys look at this old man dressing like he’s 23. Sad!
    https://twitter.com/survivorsavage/status/835021913609011200

    • purplerockandy

      He’s so relatable.

      • I bet he has thoughts on Adele vs. Beyonce for Album of the Year.

        • BadPlayer91

          DID YOU SAY BEYONCE!!!?!!?!?!?!!!

          Bey girl Bey

          • I grabbed a spot on the “awards shows are bullshit” train a long time ago, so Bey getting the L from the Grammys can’t hurt me.

          • BadPlayer91

            My dedication to Beyonce is too great to not feel a moral obligation to be a mix of angry, disappointed, and distraught.

          • Black Dynamite

            I also think awards shows are bullshit but if they insist on continuing to have them then at least try to actually award POC artists every once in awhile.

          • BadPlayer91

            I’m stuck in a terrible place where i’m sooo wooed by the glitz and glamour of award shows. I love the momentous idea of joining an elite group of people who won an oscar for acting (kinda like being 1 of 32 sole survivors). BUT, the more you look into how something like the oscars functions, and how terrible they are at recognizing diversity, it becomes real sad. Remember when Golden Globes gave an award to The Martian, last year’s funniest comedy?

          • sharculese

            Award shows are just expensive company picnics. Every time youre tempted by them, think about the last office holiday party you had to go to.

          • Black Dynamite

            That was awful. What are your Oscar predictions for this Sunday?

          • BadPlayer91

            La La LA LA LA ALALALALALLAA Land will sweep almost everything it is in. The oscar voting body is largely comprised of older, white males who want to be reminded of classical hollywood, and in that regard, La La Land is all their collective wet dreams. Nothing against the film, i thought it was amazing, but I would prefer it went to Moonlight.

            I think Emma Stone will get Best Actress, 85% deserved, 15% because LA LA LA

            Best actor i think is really up in the air. I wouldn’t be surprised it if went to Gosling, though he would be 15% deserved, 85% because LA LA LA. My main hope is it doesn’t go to Casey Affleck, because he’s not a great person. I would be very happy if Denzel nabbed it, because DENZEL!

            I would like Mahershala Ali to win supporting, but it’s not a very oscar friendly performance, so idk.

            Supporting actress should go to Viola Davis, if not, we riot.

          • Black Dynamite

            I agree that La La Land wins big. I liked but didn’t love the movie. Moonlight was my favorite among the Best Picture nominees.

            I’m still pissed that Amy Adams wasn’t even nominated. She was amazing in Arrival, as well as Nocturnal Animals. I agree that Emma wins it.

            Cosign with you on Affleck. I think Denzel actually takes it this year.

            I’m annoyed that Dev Patel is in the Supporting category for that lead role he had.

            And yes. Voila netter win or we riot.

          • EmAndScoutInBK

            Fine with Emma Stone winning. I don’t really have an opinion on Best actor – don’t think Gosling deserves it necessarily, but don’t want Affleck to win because same reason. Denzel might nab it.

            Viola or riot.

          • BadPlayer91

            I agree, i actually think Amy in Arrival was my favorite of those i was this year. But, she split it votes. By being eligible for 2 movies, voting body then splits it between the two roles they like her in. Even if she had the most votes as an individual, her roles don’t get nominated.

            Agree on Dev, it’s clearly a lead role. Problem is movies self-nominate, so they get to choose based on what they think is the better option to win. Dev wouldn’t win in lead, but he may in supporting, so that’s where he’s at. Same thing happened with Javier Bardem and No Country for Old Men

          • Alycia Swift

            I read this after posting

          • Kemper Boyd

            Amy Adams screams of an actress who is going to get a pity Oscar in a down year because she gets nominated so much (and is consistently good) and then the next year give easily the best performance of the year and not win and Oscar because reasons.

          • Purple Rock Emma

            Huh, I feel like Sunny Pawar was in Lion more than Dev Patel. I think Supporting is more appropriate for him than Viola Davis (though I never saw Fences, so I’m basing this on what others have said).

          • Black Dynamite

            I can see the argument that Viola was a lead in Fences.

          • Supposedly Viola and her handlers saw the Lead Actress category and knew that she could easily get Amy Adamsed, so they drop her down to Best Supporting Actress.

          • Black Dynamite

            Fair enough. I think Emma Stone is winning that award no matter who her opponents are. So, good to get away from that category when you can.

          • But the interesting thing is that Emma Stone is a fairly recent lock on that category. But have Stone and Huppert competed against each other at a major awards ceremony?

          • Black Dynamite

            I’ve already forgotten. There are too many award shows.

          • Yeah and not all of them really matter in the Oscar long run.

          • purplerockandy

            LOL at Academy voters having seen Elle.

          • Well, she is nominated, isn’t she?

          • Diego Armando

            They don’t have to watch the movies to vote on them (except Foreign Language Film).

          • Well, that could have explain how Elle didn’t even make the longlist for Foreign Language Film.

          • Alycia Swift

            Sometimes actors And their handlers decide to submit themselves for supporting when they believe there is more of a chance they will be nominated.

          • Purple Rock Emma

            Oh, I know. I’m mostly expressing that I don’t think it’s that off-base for Dev Patel to have submitted for supporting based on role size alone.

          • Diego Armando

            She asked to be put in Supporting Actress. Smart Move.

          • Purple Rock Emma

            Agreed. Just figure if we’re going to question placement, that’s the one that stands out.

          • Kemper Boyd

            I agree with Emma Sunny Parwah was the lead for me.

          • purplerockandy

            I think the most accurate statement is that there was no leading performance in that movie.

          • Black Dynamite

            That is probably true. I felt like Dev was the lead but I can see there not being one.

          • purplerockandy

            He’s top billing, but doesn’t show up until the movie is half over.

            And within that half, a lot of the heavy lifting is done via flashbacks.

          • Black Dynamite

            Good point. Then again, Anthony Hopkins was the “lead” in Silence of the Lambs with 20 minutes of screentime. So it’s pretty hard for me to gauge who leads are.

          • purplerockandy

            Are you suggesting that some of this is completely arbitrary? My word.

          • Diego Armando

            La La Land, Guy who Directed La La Land, Affleck, Stone, Davis, Ali.

          • How dare you! Award shows are the best!

          • Diego Armando

            Give her an award that means something.

      • Mike Hirsch

        He has an iPhone! He must be cool!

      • Any ideas on where he got that shirt? I wonder if they sell it in my size…

    • sharculese

      Yesterday I saw a dude wearing a shirt that just said ‘manscaped’ in Garamond, and I was certain that was the worst shirt that existed. Can I go back to yesterday?

      • Kemper Boyd

        I wanted to retweet with a snarky comment but that just seemed mean to the old guy, I’m sure his daughters’ cringing is enough.

        • purplerockandy

          His daughter’s cringing is the REWARD. I hope he runs to grab the shirt and beanie every time they have friends over.

          • sharculese

            Real talk one of my favorite moments, if not my absolute favorite, in the history of the podcadt is when Emma told you you werent allowed to say AF.

          • the sky is falling

            extreme ‘actually’ voice: Well, isn’t the AF for Abercrombie and Fitch in this case?

            (That’s just as bad I suppose)

        • sharculese

          Its okay to be mean to him. Hes lawyer, not a people.

          • EmAndScoutInBK

            HEY!

          • Kemper Boyd

            You are a lawyer and a people.

          • sharculese

            Did that hurt, person who is dead to me because she drafted Andrea before I could?

          • EmAndScoutInBK

            What was I supposed to do? NOT take Andrea? That’s just crazy talk.

          • sharculese

            Yes! Thats what you were supposed to do!

          • Diego Armando

            I got Andrea too. I picked 5th in my group, and two people decided that Brad and Hali were of greater value (the others took Malcolm and JT).

          • Alycia Swift

            Hey! Savage is not a people based on his own personality, not his profession.

          • sharculese

            It can be two things.

        • EmAndScoutInBK

          I was also going to make a snarky comment, but then I realized, it speaks for itself.

      • Assistant Dragon Slayer

        Could have been Comic Sans.

    • Brian Gold

      What a superstar. I love Savage.

      • Kemper Boyd

        You are wrong

        • gouis

          Solid shutdown. No room for compromise.

        • Brian Gold

          K.

    • purplerockandy

      Savage writing a sincere, heartfelt post about his Savage AF shirt is Peak Savage. They should bring him back every season.

      • Mike Hirsch

        To always get eliminated right around the merge? I’d enjoy that.

      • DrVanNostrand

        I don’t want him back again unless they also bring back the outcasts. I just want to see the look on his face.

        • purplerockandy

          I’d be down with that.

    • Purple Rock Emma

      My friend’s last name is “True” and there’s some clothing company called that and he has a shit ton of their stuff. People whose names are words enjoy things with their word names on them.

      • My last name is Brooks Brothers.

        • Purple Rock Emma

          Do your suits have “Brooks Brothers” emblazoned across the front? Interesting look.

          • What’s the point of wearing #brands if you aren’t going to #brand?

          • sharculese

            God this is like a joke from The Great Indoors.

          • If they want to pay me showrunner money, I’ll crank those out for them.

          • sharculese

            You probably did and dont know it. Imsgine every generation gap joke you and Andy tested during MvX then discarded as too hacky. Imagine someone bundled all of those bad non-jokes together and cobbled them into a rough, sitcom-esque form. Thats The Great Indoors.

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            Idea: each season CBS creates a sitcom to synergize with the most recent Survivor theme. Game Changers could be about a bunch of twentysomethings working at a board game company. Someone get me the number for Les Moonves!

          • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

            It’s even backwards compatible. A mechanic, a model, and a programmer all become roommates. Hijinks ensue!

    • gouis

      Being rich must be nice.

  • Super duper fan

    I don’t know what it is about Hali, but there is just something unique about her that I can’t help but love her. It really reminds me of Michelle last season, where I was just so enamored by her personality that I just couldn’t NOT root for her. And as with Michelle I also think that Hali is being written off as just some quirky girl, when in reality she is a lot of smarter than people are giving her credit for. I’ll be rooting for her the sceond most only behind Ciera (I’m gonna have from this season on have two people who I’d like to win the most which will be my winner picks, I’ll be calling them the Adam (this season it is Ciera), and the Michelle S (this season it is Hali) after they were my two favourites going into last season and still were during it).

    P.S. There are technically three people for whom I’ll be rooting more than Ciera and Hali (AKA Sandra, Cirie and Tony), but I don’t want to set myself for disappoitment after they’ll most likely get voted out (I WILL be rooting for them, but I want to be careful)

    P.P.S. Hali is the most attractive person this season, and people who say otherwise are wrong.

    • Black Dynamite

      Then I will happily be wrong over in the Andrea camp.

      • Super duper fan

        AS YOU SHOULD BE.

      • Mike Hirsch

        There is nothing, nothing at all, wrong with being wrong in the Andrea camp.

    • Kemper Boyd

      I’m with Mike Hirsch on the Aubry train this year.

      • Super duper fan

        She’s definetely in top 8 of people who I’d like to win the most.

        • Kemper Boyd

          No as the most attractive.

          • Super duper fan

            She’s in the top 3 or 4 for me this year.

      • Black Dynamite

        Aubry is very attractive and closest to my “type.”

    • purplerockandy
      • Super duper fan

        Michelle was the Queen of Dragons…Hali’s the Queen of Crabs.

        • purplerockandy

          Phrasing

          • gouis

            Still would rather chill with the Queen of the Crabs

    • Ms. Sweaterfan

      I’m just happy that the attractive young women on this season all tend to be fairly intelligent and also don’t have garbage personalities 😀

      Can’t say the same thing about the men though!

  • Ms. Sweaterfan

    When I first watched the pre-season bio videos I was somewhat high on Hali’s chances. She’s smart and likable and had good things to say about her strategy while also being very humble about her first game. I sort of put her in the same group with FFSDT and Sarah Lacina – unlikely to be targeted early and potentially skilled enough to stay on the good side of the numbers through the early merge. Then I listened to the RHAP draft episode where Shirin said that Hali had never seen Survivor before and had no idea about strategy, and now I don’t know what to think. I suppose you could say the same thing about Parvati going into FvF. Then again, you could probably also say the same thing about Monica going into Cambodia… :/
    Also, I don’t know how much I should trust Shirin’s assessment of her castmates’ strategy chops, as she’s just one person, and a super duper fan at that, so she runs the risk of over-valuing fandom and prior knowledge of the game. We’ve seen plenty of winners who learned on the fly and ended up playing really solid games (Earl comes to mind). We’ve also seen players who were relatively clueless their first time through come back with new and improved strategies, often gleaned from the winner’s of their first season (this is probably bad news for Hali though, given Mike’s unique path to the win).

    Anyway, all of that is to say that while I think Hali has some great qualities, I just don’t see her improving much on her World’s Apart finish. She might play a bit better (or at least harder) for the time that she’s out there on Game Changers, but I don’t think she’ll do much better than early merge boot, if she’s lucky. In fact I wonder if she will mirror Monica Padilla’s Cambodia game a bit and end up overplaying and getting ousted somewhere between the swap and the merge.

    • purplerockandy

      Look, when someone’s had as much demonstrable success at Survivor as Shirin, I think we should take her word as gospel.

      • gouis

        @purplerockjohn:disqus

      • Agreed. We should trust Michele, who has an unblemished track record of Survivor success.

        • gouis

          Who

        • purplerockandy

          Well, Michele DID recently beat Shirin in a contest of Survivor analysts.

  • Ms. Sweaterfan

    Also I forgot to mention that I thought this was a particularly funny article 🙂 Great job Alkanarra!

    • Alkanarra

      Thank you. I’m hoping they do this again next season, but only if it’s brand new players that we know nothing about, so the entire article is “uh… I guess based on his photo that, uh… he’ll be post-merge?”

      • purplerockandy

        Spoiler: we will not be doing this again next season. And that’s no knock on the quality of entries we got this time – I think the fact that we’ve expanded from 6 to 8 to 10 to… more than that speaks to what we think of the quality of entries.

        But I think the gimmick of a purely writerly exercise of “who can say the most about a photo and a pregame video” would get boring quickly.

        • Alkanarra

          Oh, I was 100% joking. It’s only viable for returnees.

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            Well now I want to crowd source this in the comments just for fun. Next season before the official CBS bios come out, everyone should choose a random leaked cast member from Inside Survivor and write up impossibly precise predictions for them. “This guy is wearing a tank top in his photo, so clearly he will be the second vote post-swap after his alliance loses the numbers and he messes up a puzzle in a challenge.”

          • Mike Hirsch

            “This guy with the goatee will go by the nickname ‘Chili’ and I will hate him.”

          • Diego Armando

            “This generic blonde woman will get no screen time and will be taken out in a double vote-out episode.”

          • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

            “She’s a blond mom much in the vein of Sunday, Dawn, and Lisa Whelcel. There is not a doubt in my mind that she finishes third.”

          • Kemper Boyd

            Poor Sunday, couldn’t even finish 3rd.

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            “This athletic, likable young black man will work hard around camp and contribute well in challenges. First boot. Because people are the worst.”

          • My predictions would all be based on the awfulness of humans and how much this show wants my favorites to fail.

          • Diego Armando

            “This tall, handsome 25-35ish white man will be the leader of an alliance.”

          • purplerockandy

            Just wanted you to know that I’ve already thought about it.

        • Kemper Boyd

          also I think some of us would devolve into almost Corinne levels of horribleness.

          • purplerockandy

            You’d almost half to.

          • Super duper fan

            I don’t wanna half others.

          • purplerockandy

            I don’t know when it happened, but I’ve suddenly become the WORST fucking speller.

          • Kemper Boyd

            Can Christopher spell? if so, I believe he has stolen your ability.

          • purplerockandy

            He’s got C on lock. Still working on the other 25 letters.

          • Fake knews!

          • Diego Armando

            I would guess all of us would.

  • Purplerockmatt

    look i’ve been away all day so i haven’t had time to read through the comments yet, but has anyone else pointed out that alkanarra’s avatar looks like John Oliver?

    • Alycia Swift

      I think David Tennant. Also have not had time to read all comments.

    • Alkanarra

      Sadly the avatar creator didn’t have a lot of curly hair options. Realistically I’m a poor man’s Josh Groban. I get hit on by a lot of old ladies.

      • Purplerockmatt

        I got compared twice recently to Matthew Rhys and I am like fuck yeah I’ll take it

        • Black Dynamite

          People have called me Denzel. It’s flattering but I don’t look like Denzel.

          • Purplerockmatt

            yeah that is just white people being all racist

          • purplerockandy

            Srsly. He’s the only black celebrity they can name.

          • Black Dynamite

            And half the time they were actually thinking about a different black celebrity when saying Denzel.

          • Purplerockmatt

            bwahaha that is just cold.

          • Him and Bey. And he definitely looks more like Denzel.

          • Black Dynamite

            Absolutely, I just like to pretend that’s not the case.

        • Side Character

          See? It’s not just me that thinks this!

    • gouis

      Racist

      • Purplerockmatt

        all white people look the same to me

        • gouis

          OK that’s fair

  • Super duper fan
  • Diego Armando

    I am fine with Hali being back. She seems pleasant and was a fan of the game. I think she is the person in the cast most likely to surprise people. Maybe she will be the Amber/Parvati/Andrea/Wentworth of the season.

    • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

      I’m trying to figure out why many think Hali is more likely for this outcome than Sierra. This is the biggest enigma for me this pre-season (maybe even more than why Troyzan is back)

      • Alkanarra

        Sierra played almost the entire season, did so as part of the majority, and had numerous opportunities to change up the game. She did basically nothing but wait for Mike to lose immunity. Maybe she would have won with her under-the-radar strategy, but even if she did, it was hella boring and people reasonably don’t want to see that again.

        Hali came into the merge in the minority and got picked off. True, a savvier player might have found a way to stay alive, but when you compare the two, she wasn’t in the same strong position as Sierra post-merge to prove what she could or couldn’t do during the lategame, which is why people think *maybe* she could be a threat given the opportunity.

        For the record I don’t think either of them will be this amazing, hidden mastermind – my article pretty much spelled that out – but if both players give us their same game again then at least Hali will be an enjoyable, if forgettable, presence. Sierra will just be forgettable.

        • Mike Hirsch

          My expectations for both Hali and Sierra are “not very much.” If either of them does anything this time around, I will be pleasantly surprised. Unless the thing they do is eliminate one of the players I like a lot more than either of them.

          Also, because I neglected to mention this earlier, that rap video: Oh. My. God.

          • Alkanarra

            The rap video was actually what won me over. It was so fucking out there and reminded me that she was actually a pretty cool chick, even if a little milquetoast. I don’t need Hali to be some mastermind – we’ll have plenty of that – but if she can be as entertaining as that ridiculous video then fantastic.

      • Max_Jets

        It makes sense from what we see on screen, as Alkanarra laid out, but after hearing Shirin talk about it on RHAP and write about it for Inside Survivor, Sierra seems more promising. http://insidesurvivor.com/shirin-oskooi-talks-hali-and-sierra-25605

      • purplerockandy

        For me it boils down to not believing at all that there’s untapped potential in Sierra. Because she had EVERY opportunity to be interesting in her season. And wasn’t. At all.

        Also, Hali is prettier.

        • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

          Arguably, this is more or less true for Hali too. And I’m not trying to come across as a Sierra stan, it just seems odd to me that they’re getting different treatments when they both have roughly the same potential: female player who’s just sorta around. The reason I give Sierra the edge is that she objectively showed that she would work with some terrible people and that she could do fairly well in challenges. Hali did neither. I’m not predicting Sierra to become Wentworth/Parvati/etc; we may not even have one of those players this season. But I think it’s more likely for Sierra than for Hali. Though if we can be honest, Andrea and Michaela are more likely than either of these two.

          • purplerockandy

            I suppose everything is arguable if you feel like arguing. But Sierra was in 6 more episodes than Hali. And was in the power alliance. And had options to do things.

            Hali was the first member of the jury. So, no, I don’t think we’ve had the same amount of data. Or if we do… that doesn’t say anything good about Sierra.

          • SpicyMayoJaySimpson

            No, not everything is arguable, especially if you don’t feel like arguing.

            But maybe I should just accept that I’m a Sierra stan in denial and just fishing for credit of some kind for her. She has fantastic eyebrows; if we’re getting superficial in this thread, I’d at least like Sierra to get recognition for her eyebrows.

            Also, (and don’t ask me why I have this information) Will Wahl, Will Sims, and Cagayan Tasha Fox would have each earned the same number of fantasy points under the revised system. I’m sure no one else will see that, but I found that out and had to announce it to some public space.

          • Super duper fan

            For the record, if Sierra manages to actually be really good, than I’ll be willng to admit that I was wrong about her.

            The difference for me between Sierra and Hali is that Hali is fully aware that she has to change her game up to have a shot at winning this season, while I get a sense from Sierra that she plans to play the same kind of game, with the only difference being that she’ll ACTUALLY make a big move this time. For me it’s just doesn’t speak to me, and I will only believe it when I actually see it, cause she said the same kinds of things throughout last season.

            Plus for me in terms of personality Hali will always win against Sierra, so while maybe she WON’T be a mastermind this season, it’s just that I WANT her to be, cause I’m rooting for her.

            And who knows, maybe they both go premerge and the other UTR girl Sarah is gonna win this whole thing as the saying goes “where two quarrel, a third wins”.

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            She’s also tall and has ~GAME CHANGING~ ideas for innovation in barrel-related challenges.
            But seriously, I think Sierra’s edge (if she has one) is that she got really close but didn’t seal the deal by making the right move to get herself to the end when she really should have. My view is that Hali was a purely blank slate strategy wise, whereas Sierra had a strategy of sorts, it was just kind of bad. It’s definitely a matter of opinion which one of those sets you up for a better second try, but I’d say having more days in the game and some evidence of what doesn’t work probably means that Sierra has more data to work with in retooling her game. Of course, none of that takes innate abilities or game intelligence into account, and that’s a pretty huge factor (see: Wentworth).

      • Diego Armando

        Hali had a personality and tried to do stuff.

      • Diego Armando

        I suspect Hali will try and do something (and quite possibly be sent home for it), whereas Sierra will hang around in the background (and quite possibly be sent home for it).

  • Super duper fan
    • She means the one that voted out her mom. Because if it were Sierra, she’d have written “You’re really tall.”

      • Kemper Boyd

        Absurdly tall. It’s the only characteristic I can remember about her.

        • Mike Hirsch

          Her favorite chapter from The Hobbit is Barrels Out Of Bond (presumably).

          • Kemper Boyd

            Awww, that’s cute but she’s never read the Hobbit…

    • BadPlayer91

      Michaela is my bae for this season, and just as with MvGx, i’m going to be irrationally upset when she gets voted out. The level of irrationally upset will just vary by how far she gets, but even if she’s the last boot, it’ll still be irrational. Basically, FTC or nothing

      • Super duper fan

        Michaela is awesome. While I do admit that only from the Figgy boot onwards I was able to see what was so great about her, apart from her being just a fun character (even at the swap episode I wasn’t fully convinced), but from that point on I was fully on the on the Michaela train. And since the press for the Game Changers began releasing I even think she has a great shot to make the merge, final 5 and even FTC (unlike Zeke, where I began being less and less convinced that he makes the merge, even that he makes the swap I’m not that confident in) so I think we don’t have to worry TOO much about her going pre-merge (at least I HOPE so).

    • Kemper Boyd

      Come on guys it’s not that hard it’s spelt C(S)ier(r)a.