We are in the home stretch of Survivor NZ. We’ve stuck with it this far so might as well go to the end.
After Shay goes Avi has a confessional talking about how he’s tried to play with integrity and honesty. I’m completely sick of this kind of integrity nonsense this deep into a game of Survivor.
The reward challenge is a weird 2v2 version of the card flippy challenge from the Philippines for the worst prize I think I’ve ever seen, a bag of dried fruit and nut pic’n’mix. Nate and Avi win.
A further disappointment of the season is that Barb is planning how Avi can win not how she can win. It’s truly hideous.
Shay loses at Redemption Island and somehow the winner hasn’t come back, they will be reentering at Final 4, which is another massive misstep for Survivor NZ.
Somehow there is an immunity challenge in this episode and there are family messages on a phone to win. It’s the Katie Collins memorial challenge as it actually killed her. BARB SOMEHOW WINS. Hopefully Tom will go home but we’re waiting for tomorrow for the vote. This is terrible episode pacing.
We enter the next episode with Barb wearing the immunity necklace. The only thing that makes sense to me is for Tom to finally be voted out. If someone has won 4 immunities in a row you might want to get rid of them. Unless you are that afraid of Mike.
The main intrigue is whether Barb decides to stick with Avi and Tom or go with Nate and convince Avi to vote for Tom. But after Tribal Council Nate is voted out. I think Barb might be up to something here. If Mike comes back and then Tom can beat him (not that he could before) then Barb is in the final 3 and maybe she can win a plurality vote. More likely is a Avi, Mike, Tom Final 3.
Oh god, even worse than someone coming back from Redemption Island for final 4 is two people coming back for Final 5. TWO PEOPLE COMING BACK. It’s hard to explain how badly the game mechanics have been ruined in this season of Survivor NZ. The battle is coins stacked on a sword handles. The two coming back are Nate and Mike.
We’ve gone from 3 to 5 and everyone is looking at how they can get to the end and win. It’s very important to the not final 3 of Tom, Avi and Barb to get rid of Mike but Nate and Mike are looking for the angles to get someone to swap.
The Immunity Challenge is a wibbly wobbly table challenge. Tom wins his 5th Individual Immunity.
Mike tries his best to get everyone to vote for someone else. He convinces Avi that Mike and Tom would split the jury and let him sneak down the middle. Barb seems to be on Team Avi and doesn’t seem to want to go to the end, she wants to get Tom and Mike to the end with Avi. Which makes me very very angry with this season.
At Tribal Mike lays out why Barb should go with him and Nate and it’s super insulting saying that Avi and Tom have been carrying her; her brilliant response is “for someone who’s been carried I seem to be the lynchpin a hell of a lot in this game”. The disrespect for Barb throughout this season is infuriating. Yes her decision at the end to help Avi win is annoying. But every major move she instigated, she has held alliances together with those she wanted. This is actually a Sandra-esque performance in terms of post-merge play. But without Sandra’s will to win and brutally beloved personality. Barb is easily the best strategic player left but unfortunately either a strong physical or strong social player will win because idiots like Mike can’t recognise a strong strategic player. Also Barb was not very nice to anyone so they all hate her.
Mike is voted out and we are saved from a Redemption Island victor winning the whole game and ruining the concept of Survivor completely.
Another Immunity Challenge and it’s holding a vase on a long piece of wood with your foot. It gets down to Avi and Tom both having to stand with their hands behind their heads. Tom faints and Avi finally wins Immunity. His thunder is stolen, which I find amusing considering his tantrum about not winning anything earlier in the season.
Barb has told Nate she decided not to try and get to the Final 3. Which is the very worst, it’s worse than NaOnka, it’s worse than Purple Kelly, it’s worse than anything we’ve seen before. But Barb is then telling Avi the best way for Avi to win is to take out Tom. He then says something even fucking worse than anything else in the season so far “I’d rather lose than do that to Tom”. Now all I want in the world is for Barb or Tom to beat him.
Nate goes home at 4 and I dread having to listen to Avi’s moralistic bullshit, Tom being Mike Holloway and god knows what from Barb.
I’m actually looking forward to some Snakes and Rats level jury questioning just not listening to any of the F3 talk. But also I have to watch Avi talk about integrity.
Tom, Avi and Barb are chuffed to be in Final 3. Tom and Avi both think it will be split between them, they are probably right but I just wish Barb could give a Kristie in Australian Survivor level reveal of her genius to win.
I skipped through all the pre-tribal portion of the show so off we go: It’s opening statements and I can tell you Survivor has made a good decision removing them. Tom talks about being a role model to young people, honour and going hard. He thinks he earnt it. Avi waffles on about what he tells his kids, to write out their intentions; his intentions were to play with integrity, to be honest and to leave nothing on the field; Barb turns it on it’s head, she talks her actual fucking game. Explaining about being a lone wolf, about battling the big personalities, about starting to play at the tribe swap and the big moves she made. She talks about being a lioness waiting in the grass. She does say that the jury missed that she was a player. God damn it Barb never tell the jury you are better or smarter than them.
The jury asks questions. Jak thinks Barb was disrespectful and condescending(totally fair). Shannon tells Barb there is nothing she could say that would make her vote for her. She then tells Avi if he thinks that being a nice person is enough of a reason to win he’s mistaken but he comes back and tells her he has played hard and played every aspect of the game. Then Shannon asks Tom if he thinks he would be sitting in F3 without Avi saving him.
Avi wins and honestly it sucks so hard. I found him to be such a smug player. Integrity and honesty stuff just isn’t why I watch Survivor. So congratulations to him for managing it because no doubt it was hard. But it wasn’t fun to watch. He got all but Jak’s vote and I think that is a massive disservice to Tom.
It’s pretty obvious that had Barb just been a nicer person (which I don’t think is really her )then maybe she could have convinced people of the value of her game.
So that’s it for Survivor NZ coverage, I’m not recapping the reunion except to say damn Barb looks good.
As you can see my flawless edgic predicted Avi as the winner from week one and I never said anything but he would win.
Favourite seasons: HvV, Pearl Islands, Cook Islands, Micronesia, SJDS
Favourite players: Sandra, Kim, Courtney, Parvati, Yul, Nat Anderson