Survivor Fan Friction – Judd Sergeant

Continuing our latest series of essays where one of our columnists writes an ode to one of their favorite Survivor players, while defending them against any potential naysayers (both real and imagined). This isn’t a place to be fair and balanced. This is a chance to let your fan freak flag fly. Next is Assistant Dragon Slayer ready to defend his guy against a bunch of scumbags.

Why He’s Great

The cardinal sin on Survivor is to be boring. A boring Survivor player is immediately forgotten by the fans and never even considered for a return appearance*. Judd Sergeant — big, loud, gesticulating, self-contradicting, run-on sentence spouting, paranoid, grammar-butchering Judd Sergeant — was the opposite of boring. Specifically, he was hilarious. Hilarious from beginning to end, from the moment he jumped out of the boat and into quicksand, to the moment he left the tribal council area immediately muttering “scumbags”.

*Unless casting’s first choice concussed herself right before the cast shipped out and its second choice didn’t answer her phone.

Haters Gonna Hate

He was a blustery blowhard

Your point being….?

He was a bully

Judd certainly looked the part of a bully: hulking, shouty, temperamental, and ADD-addled. And Survivor does have more than its fair share of bullies (Rocky, Colton and Alecia, Dan and Will, Scot and Jason). And Judd definitely, by far, tried to intimidate and browbeat people. But he was simply too damn ridiculous, man, to make anybody feel genuinely threatened. I mean, Margaret used the word “bully” during the AYE-DEE-DEE tribal council, but next time you see the clip, just look at her expression. She’s exasperated and a bit desperate (she’s minutes away from being voted out), but she’s not afraid of Judd at all. Obviously I would rescind my defense of Judd if I knew that anybody in the Guatemala cast genuinely felt bullied in the way that Anthony, Cha-Cha, and Shirin felt bullied, but as far as I know that isn’t the case.

He had no idea how to play Survivor

Judd was certainly not a great Survivor player, but my contention is that he was an all-time great Survivor character. He was arguably second only to Tocantins Coach in terms of unintentional comedy (and if Judd were brought back — which casting absolutely should not do — I don’t think he would obnoxiously lean into his persona the way Coach did). But even as a player, Judd had some basic strategic abilities, won challenges, and certainly played the game relatively hard.

At the tribe swap, he jumped ship to the Stephenie LaGrossa fan club (Stephenie, Rafe, Jamie, Lydia, and eventually Cindy), creating a majority alliance that would stay solid through the merge and to the end game — until Danni split open its cracks. In fact, you could argue he played the game too hard, and that he could have placed even higher than sixth if he had just ridden his alliance’s coattails.

For one thing, while his lie about the HII clue didn’t burn him immediately, it made him untrustworthy in the eyes of his alliance-mates. For another, he won the loved ones visit (a mistake that has taken down many a beloved Survivor player, such as Brenda), thus leaving people back at camp unsupervised and primed to be turned by Danni. And who knows? If Judd had Mike Hollowayed the last few immunity challenges and was in an F2 with, say, Lydia or Stephenie, maybe he wins given the composition of the jury; there have been unlikelier winners.

Ron Howard: “There haven’t”.

Embrace Debate

Judd was quite simply one of the most entertaining Survivors ever. As my closing argument, let me just list some Judd quotes. Each is a Hall of Fame Survivor moment, even out of context and without explanation. That’s pretty good for a one-time player on a mostly forgotten season from 12 years ago.

  • “(Howler monkeys are)…the most annoyingest noise I ever heard in my life.”
  • “I mean it’s not like we’re being bad sportsmanships at all, we just go out there and give it 120 damn percent man, whatever it takes we’ll give, and that’s what I did today and everybody ate good so no matter what I do I’m givin’ it my damn all, man.”
  • “Cindy, do I listen to everybody? Okay, Rafe, do I listen to everybody?”
  • “When I first walked into camp, Margaret’s telling me that I have Aaaaay Deeee Deeee. That’s how you approach me? That’s what you like to say? She comes to camp… You have Aaaaay Deeee Deeee. Do you know dat? When you first meet somebody, is that something nice to say? Is that a compliment? I have Aaaaay Deeee Deeee?”
  • “That thing is definitely, by far, on the ground.”
  • “I’ve never told a damn lie in this game, man.” (Gary Hawkins calls him on the HII clue lie) “Okay, okay, you caught me, man. I told one lie. I told one lie, man. I told you, I’m a bad damn liar, man. A bad damn liar.”
  • Not a quote, but the entire pecking-order food reward that Judd won is comedy gold.
  • “Bye, guys. Hope you all get bit by a freakin’ crocodile. Scumbags.

Assistant Dragon Slayer

Assistant Dragon Slayer

Assistant Dragon Slayer fell in love with Survivor from the very first episode he watched: the Caramoan premiere. He considers any Survivor better than the Caramoan pre-merge to be great Survivor.

Favorite seasons: Pearl Islands, China, Tocantins, Heroes vs. Villains, Philippines, Cagayan, Cambodia

Favorite players: Yul Kwon, Denise Stapley, Cirie Fields, Tony Vlachos, Judd Sergeant, Benjamin Wade (Tocantins and HvV only), Brenda Lowe (fight me!)
Assistant Dragon Slayer
  • Ms. Sweaterfan

    Maybe it’s because I’ve watched 4 seasons of The Sopranos since June, but Judd kind of has a Tony Soprano thing going on. Dumber, way less threatening Tony Soprano.

    • Mike Hirsch

      When my wife had Max, she also went through a “I’m going to watch the Sopranos” period. One of the lesser-remarked upon side effects I guess?

      • Ms. Sweaterfan

        Babies love mafia violence!

        • StormofCuteness

          😂😂😂

  • Mike Hirsch

    My Guatemala knowledge is super hazy at best: did I watch it? Did I watch part of it? Did they trek through the woods at one point, to be told about Stephenie and Bobby Jon? Or did they find out about them and then trek through the woods? Either way, that’s my chief memory of Guatemala.
    Based on this column and this alone, clearly I am missing out. I may have to give it a(nother?) shot.

    • TheForRealDeal

      The latter. The trek almost killed Bobby Jon. It’s remarkable the season is as watchable as it is given how miserable the environment was. They couldn’t even go in the water!

      • Super duper fan

        I would call this season the harshest season for contestants, probably even above Africa, which says a lot.

        • Behind the scenes, Cambodia is a top contender, thanks to the heat and the rampant staph infections. But, it is down to Guatemala and Africa.

          • Hornacek

            I’m surprised that you’re saying Cambodia is the best at something.

          • Notice that I said it was a contender, but not the best.

          • Hornacek

            Shot down again!

          • Cambodia does have my favorite confessional of all time though.

          • BadPlayer91

            Intrigue! Do tell?

          • I rather not say. I will say that if you know what I liked in that season and Survivor in general, it may be fairly obvious.

          • Hornacek

            Is it in @blurrydenzel’s list of Best Survivor Confessionals?

          • I don’t know if this list exists.

          • Hornacek

            I was hoping that he had already posted on this page so my comment would have tagged him, resulting in his posting that list within 10 minutes (even if he hadn’t made it yet).

          • Don’t do that to him.

          • Hornacek

            I’m sure he has many lists already made up in a folder, just waiting for someone here to mention a specific hypothetical list so that he can pull it out and post it.

          • I don’t think he has a
            Confessional list though.

          • Blurry Denzel

            I do not.

          • I figured you wouldn’t.

          • Blurry Denzel

            It would be a fun one but way too much for me to put together, at least by myself.

          • Alkanarra

            Here’s how you do it, BD:

            Ctrl+F
            “Courtney Yates”
            Ctrl+A
            Ctrl+C
            Ctrl+V

          • Courtney Yates is not in my top 5. Also, I need two more confessionals to fill out my top 5.

          • Blurry Denzel

            It would took way more than 10 minutes.

          • Hornacek

            You’ve spoiled us in the past when we have mentioned lists and you suddenly appear (like Candyman!) and post that very list. I just assume that you have dozens of these lists already made, ready for one of us to mention the topic so you can post it.

      • Don’t forget about how someone got poisoned thanks to a tree branch on the trek.

        • TheForRealDeal

          Gooooldeen Booooy!

          • Super duper fan

            God, I love Amy.

          • indescribable hat

            She is high on my list of stunningly unlikely returnees I’d love to see.

          • DrVanNostrand

            After Judd, my favorite Guatemala survivor player.

        • Hornacek

          This sounds like M. Night Shyamalan watched that episode and it inspired him to write The Happening.

    • Ms. Sweaterfan

      I’ve rewatched Guatemala at least twice since it originally aired, but my main memory from the first time I watched it is still that grueling hike at the beginning. I also vaguely remember rooting for Stephenie, almost certainly because of the afterglow from Palau. It’s kind of a fun one to rewatch because all of the shine has come off the golden girl and you just sort of watch her unravel, knowing all the while that the editors are bending over backwards to preserve her legacy.

      • Mike Hirsch

        I feel like they should have had as part of that initial trek a rule that if you lost anyone on the trek, they were eliminated and you started the game down those numbers.

    • IIRC from Survivor Historians, they get told about Stephenie and Bobby Jon while they are on the top of a temple.

      • Super duper fan

        Yup, that’s how it was. They came down from opposite ends, and they shook hands when they met in the middle, they got to the bottom, and were assigned to their tribes.

        • Assistant Dragon Slayer

          The other rumor I heard is that they were planning to bring back Wanda and Jonathan until Stephenie turned into America’s Sweetheart. If true, that really sucks for Wanda and Jonathan, but it’s a terrible idea.

          • That is the predominant rumor. The other rumor was Skupin and Rodger because of course Skupin was up for contention for every returnee season

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            Speaking of Skupin, the original plan for Guatemala and Philippines really show how the “second chance” idea was brewing for a long time.

          • Super duper fan

            ‘Second chances’ is probably the single best idea which production used.

          • To be fair, Pearl Islands did it first with the Outcasts. Both times, it screwed over Savage.

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            I’m here for any twist that screws Savage

          • Mike Hirsch

            Rodger? Really?

          • That’s the rumor.

          • Mike Hirsch

            I just thought of a good theme for a season. Survivor: Tall Cliffs. All the challenges involve jumping off high things. Returning players: Rodger Bingham, Cliff Robinson.

          • indescribable hat

            If only there were more pun-based themes.

          • Super duper fan

            I also heard about that. To be fair it’s not as random as what they did in the end (it’s better than in SP, but it’s still weird). Plus I’m not a fan when there are only one, two returning players, especially if one of them was a really big character before, cause it means they will eat up a lot of screen time, and pretty much always are at the end. At least Wanda and Jonathan would begin as a clean slate, and Wanda at least seemed like she could’ve been fun.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            I heard the initial concept for SP was to bring back Coach and Phillip, in kind of an insane-asylum version of the Boston Rob/Russell showdown Redemption Island was supposed to be, but Phillip didn’t want to do two seasons in a row.

            What an awful season that would have been.

          • Good choice, Phillip.

            There was also a rumor that they wanted Ethan and Jenna M. for that season as well because they were still dating at the time.

    • indescribable hat

      I once had a dream in which I was a contestant on Guatemala. They started out with some kind of Wanda-and-Jonathan style insta-elimination game, but it burned Bobby Jon and Probst got really mad and made us do it over. I hope this eventually adds to your Guatemala confusion.

      • Hornacek

        We need more comments about dreams about being part of existing seasons.

        • indescribable hat

          It is the least alarming of my three (3) dreams I remember about being on Survivor. Why it’s about Guatemala of all seasons I couldn’t tell you.

  • Super duper fan

    I actually am pleasantly surprised by this choice.

    Due to Guatemala being kind of forgotten in a wide spectrum because it doesn’t have any returning players, there are many players who are forgotten because of it, and Judd is one of them. He’s kinda like proto-Shane, in that he gets into a lot of fights, is loud,, people don’t take him very seriously, but has some lovable side to him, and that’s probably another reason why he has gotten so forgotten, cause Shane is basically bigger and better character of him, but he still has a lot of quirks that make him unique and entertaining.

    While he makes Guatemala really entertaing, he isn’t on the list of people I’d like to see from it, cause I would probably get tired of his schtick pretty quickly.

    Ashley Underwood, we’re forever grateful for what you’ve brought to the game. We are not worthy of the joy you bring us.

    • indescribable hat

      I find Shane less hostile/aggressive/scary, although he will threaten to kill you in your shitty apartment, so maybe I shouldn’t.

      I am so fucking confused about this Ashley Underwood thing. Is there anything to get? Where does this come from? I have finished RI and there was no enlightenment there.

      • StormofCuteness

        Watching RI only made it more confusing.

        Psst, I think a bet was lost.

        • indescribable hat

          Ohhhhhhh

      • DrVanNostrand

        Because of his physical appearance Shane is less scary, but he has this Dahmer/Unabomber type of instability that I would personally find much more unsettling than Judd, man.

      • Super duper fan

        I’m so sorry you weren’t able to see and appreciate Ashley Underwood as much everyonne else does. But she uses such a revolutionary gameplay, it’s so hard not be amazed by what she brought to the table in the evolution Survivor. When you’ll soon rewatch RI, as I’m sure you plan to do so, maybe you’ll understand why she’s such a treasure.

        • indescribable hat

          Oh god.

      • Taako From Teevhii

        I think it makes more sense if you append an “Amen” at the end.

  • BadPlayer91

    Great post ADS! So much content from you in 2 days. I haven’t watched Guatemala yet, so I can’t weigh in too heavily here. But I can say that I’ve finished Pearl Islands, and thus am over half-way through the seasons.

    • Super duper fan

      How did you like the season, the cast etc.?

      • BadPlayer91

        Loved it. Instantly one of my favorite seasons (Currently 4th in my personal rankings) and easily my favorite of the early seasons. The strategy isn’t mind-blowing, but it could be argued as ground-breaking. I feel like, after Rob C showed the power of good strategy in Amazon, this season is the first where everyone comes ready to play and focused on the idea of ‘doing whatever is necessary to win.’ Thus, strategy begins to take a bigger spot front and center.

        I loved every bit of Sandra I could lap up, which is what I was expecting. I think the cast is great, with just the right balance of unusual interactions and relationships. I hated Fairplay just as much as I expected to, but I appreciate his role as villain and subsequent downfall, which really makes the finale so satisfying.

        So yeah, overall, loved Pearl Islands, and ready to ram my way into All-Stars, lol

        • Super duper fan

          Yeah, there aren’t really arguments to say that this season is bad at all. I would probably like it more if I didn’t finish it in just two days, but I still really liked it.

          The only ‘unpopular’ opinion I have about this season is that I don’t find this cast as great as people find it to be. When I talked with @Max_Jets:disqus about BB5, she said about how even if we remove one of the key players, the cast is stacked enough that it would still be most likely great….which I don’t think is the case here. In my opinion if one of Sandra, Fairplay or Rupert gets voted out early, I don’t think that other players could’ve carried the season. The other season that also is kinda like that is Philippines. If Denise, Malcolm or Penner gets voted out pre-merge, it’s highly likely that it wouldn’t be as great as it was. I’m not saying that it necessarily brings down those seasons, or even that these casts are bad at all, just that we were lucky that they shook out as great as they did.

          • BadPlayer91

            Eh, I think Burton, Christa, or Savage could have carried the season if need be, but I agree that the season is in many ways made by those main characters. That being said, I think i’d argue a good season with a great cast can’t be all dynamite, some has to be supporting or even a bit more 1-dimensional, just to juxtapose the events and other characters. And in this case, the non-stellar amazing characters still brought enough to the table to be interesting, challenging, and impact the season in a way while many other ‘filler’ players simply existed and then didn’t.

          • Super duper fan

            Yeah, Burton and Christa were definetely one of the better castaways, and could’ve carried it. In the end it comes down to personal preference, and I personally like when the season has a lot of fun characters, with few stars (and it’s not like the worse characters are bad, just that IMO they’re OK at best).

          • indescribable hat

            We never really got to put it to the test, but I got promising vibes from Dana and Katie. Denise, Malcolm, and Penner are obviously all absolutely top tier casting, and as great as Philippines was is a high bar, but I think there was untapped potential out there. Think about Zane! Plus everyone else who did give us a lot, like my beloved Lisa and the powder keg trio of Abi, RC, and Pete.

          • Maritimer

            This is a really hard thing to assess in this season, because its not so much that the other characters aren’t good, but you take any of those three out you probably have an entirely different narrative for the season and who knows what that would have resulted in

        • Diego Armando

          As a reward here is Sandra’s comments on Jon’s grandma I found in the DVD extras:

          “He told us his grandma raised him… he’s the devil, she’s got to be the devil… who cares, she’s in Hell now. Good for her, good for us, good for the world. The point is that none of us cared about his dead grandma.”

          • BadPlayer91

            I fully understand why they didn’t include that quote, but I also fully love that quote.

            I did catch an amazing moment in Pearl Islands where Sandra gives a mischievous smile to the camera which was very reminiscent of her camera-glances in Game Changers.

          • Diego Armando

            This quote came from a studio interview. I found it on the extras.

          • indescribable hat

            She’s such a treasure.

    • Assistant Dragon Slayer

      Thanks! I honestly just kind of tossed this one off because the Australian Survivor premiere was coming up quickly. I was kind of hoping not to have to follow up the incredible Kelley Wentworth post.

      If you haven’t seen Palau, you should watch that before Guatemala.

      • BadPlayer91

        Yeah, i’m tackling All-Stars next, then I am probably going to jump to 21-24 to knock some of those out of the way, then i’ll come back down to 9-11 and everything else pre-HvV. I’ve decided to make that my last season unless pushed by some outside factor.

        • Alkanarra

          All-Stars followed by 21-24.

          Yikes.

          • BadPlayer91

            I’m going to intersperse 26 and 29 in there as well, to somewhat break it up. It may be rough, but I’d rather get them out of the way then finish HvV and have only disliked and poorly ranked seasons left, heh.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            That’s a good plan. I was planning to make HvV my last catch-up season also, until they did the watch-along here. Now my only remaining seasons are S2-5, and I just can’t bring myself to start down a path that ends with Thailand.

          • Super duper fan

            You can begin with Thailand, the other seasons aren’t really necessary to watch it (while I don’t really encourage to watch Thailand either way lol).

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            The paths that start with Thailand, or have Thailand in the middle, aren’t that appealing either.

          • Super duper fan

            At least you wouldn’t end with a REALLY bad taste, and end with for example Marquesas after which the after taste would be MUCH better.

          • Diego Armando

            I had not seen all of Australia-All Stars, so I I decided to binge them all 2 years ago (Saving Pearl Islands for last). My local library system is awesome, so I could rent all the DVDs.

            I had finished Africa (which I did not care for) and was shocked that Marquesas was checked out with an additional hold on it. Thailand was available though. There is nothing that will make you appreciate the 7.5 Marquesas more than watching it after Thailand.

          • indescribable hat

            Just don’t even bother with Thailand. There’s literally nothing to recommend it.

          • Hornacek

            I think someone is forgetting the ATTACK ZONE!

          • DrVanNostrand

            I disagree with the hat. I consider Thailand one of the more enjoyable seasons in the lowest tier. It’s faint praise, but I’d watch it again before Nicaragua, or Jesus Island, or Gabon.

            (Edit: My ranking of 2-5 – Marquesas, Australia, Thailand, Africa. I don’t like Australia as much as most, and I think the difference between Africa and Thailand is negligible.)

          • Super duper fan

            Eh, post-merge can be fun, but I don’t find Caramoan really that good of a season to wash away the bad ones.

          • Kemper Boyd

            I don’t like Caramoan but because it’s returnees you have to have watched the seasons they are from before tackling it. I couldn’t imagine watching HvV without seeing Samoa or Micronesia. Or Micronesia without Cook Islands.

          • BadPlayer91

            Yeah, that’s another part of my order. I think i’ll probably do 21-22, then 29, then come back for 23-24, and then 26.

          • Diego Armando

            You need to do that. Nicaragua-One World is the bleakest stretch in Survivor History. Carampane works best if you’ve seen Redemption Island and South Pacific. We are here for venting.

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            For what it’s worth, I actually stopped watching Survivor from Samoa through Redemption Island, then started watching live again for South Pacific. Sometime around Caramoan I went back and forced invited my husband to watch every single season with me in order, so I ended up seeing seasons 19-22 for the first time during that stretch of bingeing. I personally prefer bingeing seasons to watching them stretched out over several months, so I think the stinkier seasons benefited from that but it also really condensed Hantz-mania so I got really sick of Russell really fast.

          • indescribable hat

            I keep trying to invite people to watch huge amounts of Survivor with me but I don’t think I’m intimidating or married enough to pull it off.

      • Kemper Boyd

        hehehe “tossed it off”

        …look it up it’s British.

        • BadPlayer91

          LOL

        • Assistant Dragon Slayer

          Pants. Shag. Fanny pack.

          • Kemper Boyd

            Fanny Pack is american, you pillock. It’s a bumbag.

          • BadPlayer91

            I mean, technically both ‘fanny’ and ‘pack’ are usable words in the UK, but it’s just a far more confusing and upsetting thing when put together.

            But yeah, ADS is being a wanker.

          • Kemper Boyd

            LOL. BP are you one of the contingent of British PRPers?

          • BadPlayer91

            I think i’d technically fall into the category of wannabe British PRPers. I lived in England for 3 1/2 years when I was younger. Easily 3 of the most important years of my life, and as a result London is by far my favorite place in the world. I spend an unacceptable amount of time using google maps to explore England and the parts of London I never made it to.

          • Kemper Boyd

            Bruv, that is so sweet. If you do come over let’s go for a drink.

          • BadPlayer91

            Deal. Idk when i’ll be back, but I certainly will. My boyfriend has never been, so i’ve been trying to use that as an excuse to get back. Probably my #1 goal in life is to live in London again, either permanently or semi-permanently.

          • Assistant Dragon Slayer

            That’s bollocks and you know it.

          • BadPlayer91

            Piss off (wink*)

          • Taako From Teevhii

            No, he’s being a bellend.

          • Braces holds pants up, right?

          • Kemper Boyd

            And fix teeth.

        • Hornacek

          “Okay, who’d like a banger in the mouth? Oh, right. I forgot. Here in the States, you call it a sausage in the mouth.”

  • Alkanarra

    It’s been 13 years since I saw it so my memory might not gel with the truth, but that don’t mean I don’t have things to say ’bout Guatemala.

    The storytelling of Guatemala would have been a trainwreck without Judd. The season’s clear villain was Stephanie, but they couldn’t fully spin it that way because of her golden girl status from Palau, and playing up the “outcast causing chaos wins it all” ending would have been redundant right after Vanuatu. Instead they just pretend Stephanie is winning until she doesn’t. Modern Survivor might not have had a problem turning her into the heel and making this Danni’s story, but fresh off of All Stars it felt like they saw the value in returning players, had just used up most of their pool, didn’t like the material the winner gave them, and didn’t want to ruin someone who was mega popular. Danni wins so she can’t be the villain, Stephanie has a rep to uphold so she can’t either, which left one man to be our “bad guy”.

    The problem, as ADS points out, is that he was too buffoonish for even that, but thankfully he was just that good of a buffoon that it really didn’t matter. He gave the story focus as the alliance’s ticking time bomb, and the post-merge would have been a wreck without that. I haven’t seen Guatemala since it first aired, but Judd is easily the most memorable component of that season aside from me fuming in anger that Stephanie lost, which I dunno maybe I’ll get over some day but probably also not.

    • Assistant Dragon Slayer

      Wow, you really nailed what feels not quite right about Guatemala. Not that it’s a bad season at all but the storytelling is “off” somehow. Usually it’s attributed to, as you say, not wanting to tarnish Stephenie’s halo no matter what, as well as to Danni giving them nothing to work with in confessionals, but its more than that. And in addition, Rafe isn’t quite up to the job of being the season’s narrator, and Lydia isn’t quite the proto-Keith-Nale that she could have been.

      • Ms. Sweaterfan

        You make some great points about the casting being almost there but not quite. I sort of feel like Guatemala is the pivot point between classic survivor and what was “modern Survivor” until, oh, say HvV. You can definitely see that they’re trying out some things with casting that will become archetypes, but neither the producers nor the contestants know quite what to do with it yet.

    • jersey_luck

      The other problem with making Guatemala Danni’s story is that they had very little content with her talking about her game because Danni was scared that production might bring it up in a tribal council or something

      • Alkanarra

        And yet Michelle is still a less-loved winner, showing that even non-participation is more valuable than being really fucking boring.

        • jersey_luck

          Personally I love Michele more then Danni but I know I am the odd person out in that opinion.

        • purplerockandy

          Michele also beat someone certain people like. Danni did not.

          • Other Scott

            Danni beat possibly the most popular female Survivor in the history of the show.

          • purplerockandy

            She wasn’t by the time that season was over among internet fans. The backlash was FIERCE.

        • Max_Jets

          Danni also had a much more difficult path to the end, and while her win isn’t explained very well you do get to watch her pull off one really great move.

  • jersey_luck

    Really, I thought the only person who hated Judd was Jeff Probst.

  • Ms. Sweaterfan

    OT, but even though I didn’t get my
    act together to participate in the Philippines rewatch this summer, I
    have been making my way through an extremely sporadic rewatch of Kaoh
    Rong, and I have some thoughts. First of all, the pacing suxxx! I know
    they were dealt a really bad hand with the evacs – not just the quantity
    but also the timing, but I think the season suffers unnecessarily because of some of their decisions.

    It seems counter intuitive, but I
    really wish they had made Caleb’s evac and the Alecia boot two separate
    episodes. I’m no Alecia fan, but her elimination feels so tacked on and
    inconsequential the way they did it. I think the Caleb incident could
    easily have been its own episode, which would have freed them up to
    combine one of the later evacs into a double boot episode (maybe even
    push Joe’s evac into the finale).
    I’m actually watching the
    finale as I type this, and OMG is it a slog! Everything is so drawn out –
    I swear the ‘vote out a jury member’ sequence was at least 15 minutes
    long. I can’t imagine what they would have done without that twist,
    though! I think in the 3 person FTC era, 4 people is not enough to
    populate an entertaining finale, though on principle I prefer it to the
    overstuffed finales that result when they try to hedge their bets too
    much.

    And finally, I’m not trying to write the Michele Fan
    Friction or anything, but on the rewatch I have to admit that she’s
    really likeable. I don’t think she’s a top tier winner or a top tier TV
    character, but she has a great attitude and she put in her work and had a
    few strokes of luck that got her to the end while staying on the jury’s
    good side. She also did a solid job at the FTC. I think in most other
    final 3 combos that were remotely possible coming from about mid-merge
    Aubry probably wins, but Michele played the right kind of game for what
    the jury valued and she was a threat that Aubry couldn’t neutralize.

    Miscellaneous thoughts:
    -omigod
    Scot and Jason really suck. Seriously they’re the absolute worst. I
    wonder if either one of them would have been as bad without the other?
    -Cidney was casting gold and I hope she comes back and does even better!
    -Sadly,
    Aubry’s run on Game Changers tainted her Kaoh Rong game for me somewhat
    on the rewatch 🙁 I know it shouldn’t have, but watching her spend her
    entire second season spinning her wheels made the bad parts of her first
    game stand out more
    -I streamed so much TV this month that I
    used a terabyte of data. Not specifically Survivor related (it was
    probably 2/3 Law and Order) but it felt like it was worthy of mention.

    • Based on the swap, we know that Scot has some social game because of how he pulls in Tai and Julia.

    • jersey_luck

      Even at the time it I thought the fourth episode (the Caleb med-vac and the Alecia vote out) was super rushed and should of not happened the way it did. I thought production should have just elimated the brawn and sent its remains to the other tribes but they decided to have an actual tribal council instead because they could have filled an episode with challenge and its aftermath. But I guess that it retrospect after the game was filmed and we knew about other medvacs. Still love the season tho.

    • Max_Jets

      I think Jason wouldn’t have been nearly as bad without Scot. He shows more empathy than Scot (particularly on Darnell’s vote out) and he’s buds with Aubry, which obviously makes him better.

      • Ms. Sweaterfan

        Good call. Also, I forgot to mention it above but I think if you swap out Alecia for just about anyone else, there’s a chance Jason and Scot wouldn’t have bonded over bullying and Brawn would have started out with a much better tone.

    • Hornacek

      “I’m not trying to write the Michele Fan Friction or anything”

      Now I want someone to do this, but it only contains the words “Yeah, I got nothing.”

    • Maritimer

      I’m not as big a fan of Kaoh Rong as others and I think that the pacing issues is a huge part of that, especially since I watched most of the post-merge spoiled on the winner because I was catching up after a trip. The other reason is I can’t stand Jason and Scot

  • Hornacek

    “we just go out there and give it 120 damn percent man”

    Come on, every Survivor should know that you give 150 to 200% percent (I would have also accepted 150,000%).

    And for God’s sake, put a shirt on ASD’s Purple Rock display pic!

    • Assistant Dragon Slayer

      You obviously haven’t seen the screengrab for my Australian Survivor episode 2 post.

      • DocRules4815

        And this didn’t get Amanda-style blurred because…?

        (Not that I’m complaining, mind you.)

        • Assistant Dragon Slayer

          Because it’s Australian TV, I guess. No words are bleeped, either.

          • Figaro

            The weird thing is that Ben(?) also lost his shorts earlier in that challenge but his butt was blurred. I’m grateful though that they didn’t blur Locky’s ass and deny viewers the pleasure of seeing it haha

        • jersey_luck

          Because Australia tv networks are different America ones. (In this case I believe there is base fee for Australian basic television while America’s big five networks are free public access which comes with some basic regulation such as nudity and blippind swear words.)

      • I still prefer Naked Attraction.

      • indescribable hat

        Hmm, maybe I’ll give this Australian Survivor thing another try.

    • Kemper Boyd

      In SUrvivor less than 150% isn’t even trying.

      • BadPlayer91

        Sometimes in Survivor, giving less than 150% is how you give more than 150%…

        • Kemper Boyd

          No, you give 150% to make it look like you are giving 10% or you give 150% to lose so you can get rid of someone giving 200%

          • BadPlayer91

            Semantics

          • I give 150%, but it’s really only about 72% after Obama gets his hands on it. Thanks, Obama.

    • indescribable hat

      Yeah, what is this, the beach? We wear shirts around here!

  • sharculese

    “Obviously I would rescind my defense of Judd if I knew that anybody in the Guatemala cast genuinely felt bullied in the way that Anthony, Cha-Cha, and Shirin felt bullied, but as far as I know that isn’t the case.”

    I’m not gonna hunt it down, but, iirc, in the Funny 115 entry on the Ay-Dee-Dee scene Mario Lanza got a quote from someone, I wanna say Rafe, saying he was absolutely terrified during that exchange.

    • Super duper fan

      Rafe said exactly “Well…it wasn’t funny at the time. It was sort of hard to find Judd funny when you were sitting there right next to him.”

      • sharculese

        That’s what I was thinking of, thanks.

  • Diego Armando

    I’ll admit, I was not expecting this.

    • Wait until you see the next one.

      • Assistant Dragon Slayer

        Ashley Underwood?

      • the sky is falling

        Just choosing a random John post to ask this. I’m working on a very ‘Special’ write up that may or may not be up to your editorial standards. Where/how do I submit?

        It’s gonna have graphics and gifs.

        • Gmail: purplerockpodcast

          You can either attach the pics and gifs to the email or provide links to them.

    • Taako From Teevhii

      just goes to show that you can’t say anything good about Brenda

      • Assistant Dragon Slayer

        Ouch. TBH, the Nicaragua rewatch last year really took the wind out of my sails. I am so not looking forward to the Caramoan rewatch.

  • Kemper Boyd

    ASD, this is good.

    *I’m still not sure why it’s ASD not ADS.

    • His name is now Assistant Slayer of Dragons, which makes it sound more like Game of Thrones.

    • sharculese

      I had a long Gchat to cobble into something coherent and I didn’t think about what I was doing. I would ask John to fix it, but that would involve John doing work on someone else’s behalf, so why even bother asking?

      • Kemper Boyd

        No BJ Anderson has a better explanation. “Assistant Slayer of Dragons” it is.

      • You’re a good man, Sharculese.

  • purplerockandy

    I’ll admit it: I didn’t like Judd then and don’t like him now. I’m never a big fan of large men who use their physicality and aggression to get their way.

    • Blurry Denzel

      Not a fan of little men who do either. *cough Russell Hantz cough*

      • sharculese

        Russell’s not little. Russell is short. Fairplay is little.

        • Blurry Denzel

          Calling Russell a “little man” wasn’t literal on my part.

          • sharculese

            Ah. Gotcha. I prefer ‘small’ for what you’re trying to say, but regional differences and all that.

    • sharculese

      Judd using his physicality and aggression to get his way is what got him sent home, but overall I agree.

      • purplerockandy

        Eventually, yes. And I was very happy when that happened.

    • BadPlayer91

      I mostly agree, and think it’s a healthy opinion to not like men who use physicality and aggression all together. I haven’t seen Judd, but from everything I’ve read, he doesn’t really fit with my tendencies of favorite characters (strong, smart women) so we will see.

      • purplerockandy

        Physicality isn’t always bad. I have a friend who is a big dude and is otherwise very nice and gentle. But if people step out of line, he can use his size to put them in order in ways that I can’t. I’ve had bigger friends do that on my behalf.

        • BadPlayer91

          Agreed. I missed a second ‘together’ in my comment. I meant more that physicality and aggression combined aren’t often a great thing. They have their benefits, but only when properly applied.

          I’m a pretty big guy, which has come to my benefit, but I rarely use my size in an aggressive manner. In fact, I’ve recently realized that I rarely think of myself as being the size I actually am, which has a whole different set of issues, lol.

          • TheForRealDeal

            Agreed. I am frequently surprised by my own height if I happen to pass a tall mirror.

        • Ms. Sweaterfan

          I feel like James Clement (mostly just in China) is the Survivor archetype for gentle giant. Judd is the archetype of jerk who is also an idiot.

          • purplerockandy

            James Clement in HvV is archetype for aggressive giant.

          • Ms. Sweaterfan

            I like to pretend that’s an entirely different person and the real James only played once.

        • sharculese

          My trick anytime a fight is about to happen is to just go “Uh-huh. Hit me. I’m 5’5″ and weight 125 pounds, and I won’t fight back. You know how it would look.”

          They always find reasons not to.

    • Assistant Dragon Slayer

      I get that, but there’s something exceptionally funny about large men who try to use aggression and intimidation to get their way, but are far too buffoonish for it to work, and end up feared by absolutely nobody.

      Wait, are we still talking about Judd?

      • DrVanNostrand

        I feel like Trump and Judd share a lot of traits. The dark timeline where Judd wins is almost as dark as the timeline where Trump wins.

    • Other Scott

      So this is why you don’t like Jon Misch!

  • DrVanNostrand

    I love damn Judd, man!!!! He is definitely, by far, the best thing about Guatemala. Rafe – sanctimonious douche; Stephenie – overrated, even in Palau; Jamie – as obnoxious as Judd, but not entertaining; Danni – OK, I guess. Guatemala just had so little going for it.

    I definitely get people’s point about the fact that he is a bully. As a viewer, I could never see him that way because he was such a ridiculous cartoon character villain. However, as much as I liked watching him on TV, I wouldn’t want him to return and subject another cast to his bullying if his aggression was less of a joke in real life.

  • DocRules4815

    Guatemala is at the bottom of the 15 seasons I’ve seen. There are a lot of reasons for that. Judd both is and isn’t a reason.

    What’s great about Judd is that he could provide dramatic and comedic material for the editors to work with from his sheer unpredictability and volatility. It’s that latter quality that’s not so good for me; he so often veers into outright aggression and hostility. Compare him to Shane from Panama. Shane is very prone to mood shifts and outbursts, but he is far more buffoonish and lighter than Judd. Judd brings some good material to Guatemala, but much like a lot of his fellow competitors that season, it’s in a very negative tone.

    So I agree and I don’t. I, like Rafe, will not give Judd a straight answer.

    • Ms. Sweaterfan

      The other thing about Judd is that he seems extremely low intelligence. Like, I personally think he’s hilarious and love making fun of his malaprops etc, but I almost feel bad about it.

  • Taako From Teevhii

    @sharculese:disqus Alright, let’s go, let’s go I liked it, but I also didn’t like it. The bad parts were that everything happened because it felt like it had to happen. There was a huge setup, and all the plans we knew were going to be in motion got put in motion. All the favorite characters we wanted to come back did. It felt almost predictable and a little fan-servicey. But on the good, holy crap, was this executed so well. So on the whole, part of me thinks that another two hours isn’t necessary because we know how the gang’s going to defeat the Hunger. Another part knows that they’ll kill it finale because they killed this episode. But give me your take and make me like this episode more, cuz I really want to.

    On another point, we need to put out an Amber alert because a precious child went missing. There was a severe lack of Ango in this episode, and it was very bad. But the good is that I was saved from thinking about the lack of Dragon Ango, who really should have been put in play by now (like seriously, what are you waiting for, Griffin?).

    “I got a splinter.”

    • DrVanNostrand

      It was great storytelling, but Griffin clearly has this thing on rails right now. I understand it’s a tough dilemma, but it’s unfortunate.

    • sharculese

      I forgot to post about this, but it looks like I have an extra week to put my thoughts together, which… is not shocking, given the stuff that’s going on a Griffin’s job with Nick Robinson turning out to be a total creep. It sounds like he’s really shaken up right now and I can imagine how he’s not in the headspace for TAZ.

      • Taako From Teevhii

        What’s crazy to me is that it seemed almost to be treated as fact among some circles in that industry. A lot of his male colleagues didn’t know, but by the Twitter receipts, his female colleagues were all very aware of what he was doing. It’s a weird space where some people are still processing what happened and others have already moved on and left Nick behind. I haven’t listened to today’s MBMBAM, but the brothers still put one out. It seems impossible to me that they recorded it before the Nick revelations.

        Tangential and marginally insensitive: I was never a big fan of Griffin’s work with Nick, so it’s easy for me to say “Screw Nick” and forget about him. But I’m a big fan of Porter, so I’m hoping this isn’t some dirty thing that runs in their family. And I realize how self-centered that sounds, “I hope this artist I like isn’t harassing women, that’d really complicate my music consumption,” but just everyone be kind and decent to everyone please.

        • sharculese

          It’s insane how quickly this spiraled from Nick being a dick to a gamedev to “yeah, can we talk about our Nick problem,” to “fuck that guy.” I mean, he has male colleagues admitting they knew about it, now, so… it’s hard to deny the truth of it, but, still, I think it seems something at least kind of good that nobody of prominence seems to be rushing to his defense.

          You may be right about the MBMBaM thing, although I also imagine the headspace it takes to joke around with your brothers is different than the headspace it takes to bring the creative project you’ve spent years on to a close, but it may also just be that this episode is supposed to be supersized again.

  • the sky is falling

    I haven’t read this yet but am perplexed why you didn’t do Coach.

    • Assistant Dragon Slayer

      With friend and foe we march to the battle plain
      Some to seek success. Others to seek fame
      We play with honor. For the love of this game
      And with armor or without, we will toil in vain
      So that someday, someone, somewhere, will remember our name.

      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/95c822f1758fb10cdf0a7e3f97617a9499f355c10cb8c3dc059f9fce283acfb1.jpg

      • the sky is falling

        That sums him up better than any long post would. Huzzah!

        Long live The Dragonslayer!

        • Assistant Dragon Slayer

          –Eagle screech–

  • the sky is falling
  • Hornacek

    I’m currently listening to TEOS Guatemala chapter and Josh is keeping a count of the number of times Judd says the word “man”.

    In the first 5 episodes he says it 62 times.

    In episode 6 alone he says it 40 times, resulting in a total of 102 times for episodes 1-6

    I can’t wait to see what the final count is.