Survivor NZ Recap – Episode 3 & 4

The first thing that needs discussing about Survivor NZ is the news that broke last week. In a Dee exit interview that the castaways spent 3 days before the show began hanging out, getting to know each other and chatting. That is why we heard from Tom that all the people he had trust with were on the other tribe and people were worrying about who had links on the other side. I find this to be an egregious thing for the producers to have done. Essentially there is 3 days of game play that we the viewers are not privy to. It changes the very nature of the game. Part of the difficulty of Survivor is not knowing anything about the relationships and dynamics on the other tribe until a swap or a merge. But now in the case of a swap there will be pre-built.

Episode 3

Episode 3 opens with Tony being salty as all hell at Redemption. Then at Mogoton Shay leads the tribe in prayer which as a good Survivor fan worries me. If we see anything near South Pacific levels of god being brought into this it will ruin an already shaky beginning to this new version of the show. Oh good and now it’s Tribe Yoga. Tribe Yoga is one of my least favourite bonding exercises you see on Survivor. Word on the street is Mogoton without Tony is a fun, happy, cohesive tribe, let’s see how long that lasts.

The young’uns alliance on Hermosa is brushing their teeth with charcoal but Barb and Nate are doing their own old person thing. Remember when Georgia said she thought Mike was bright? Well he can’t weave or he’s dumb enough to think he’s better off cocking up on purpose so he won’t have to do them. He then says something about how it sucks she has a boyfriend at home. Nate has noticed that Georgia is the head of the snake in the young’uns alliance having Mike wrapped around her finger and begins to work on Shannon. The problem for Nate is 3 into 7 doesn’t go.

Reward Challenge time, it’s the classic chase the other tribe in a circle whilst carrying weight, the prize is a tarp, coffee and tea. Nate is sitting out for Hermosa, which seems odd as he’s a big bloke.  The choice looks costly as Barb falls and they nearly get caught. Mogoton lose after having all three women duck out early and having the men carry all the weight. This is the technique Rob C said teams should use to break this challenge; it seems like he was massively wrong.

It’s Tom, Avi and Izzy vs Shay, Sala and Lou at Mogoton. Tom and Izzy are talking about how they want to see Shay go, showing that maybe voting against two solid alliance members early can get you in trouble.

At Hermosa, Barb goes off with Shannon to see where she is but again 3 into 7 does not go. But overall, they feel like Mike is untrustworthy. Georgia comes out to sunbathe and interrupts the conversation which is great work on her part.
Jak wants everyone to think he’s a complete idiot; which is all well and good until people decide they won’t vote for you because you are a complete idiot.

The episode drags on and on with no immunity challenge and we get a little look at Redemption Island with Hannah and Tony.

Then it’s time for the Redemption Island duel. Tony talks about being backstabbed. Shannon and Georgia get all the info. Sala says he didn’t write his name down, Lou says Tony is like family to her. They are throwing Shay hard under the bus. Tony wins!

Bye Hannah, it sucks we didn’t see more of you. Hannah seemed like one of the most interesting characters in the cast.

An hour-long episode without anyone being voted out is hard to watch. A full hour of build up to the Redemption Challenge is way way too much.

Survivor NZ Edgic Episode 3 

The Edgic supports what I said last week there is no way that Tom isn’t winning this whole thing.

Episode 4

We open as the past two episodes have at Mogoton; Sala and Lou are back from the challenge and are telling the rest of their tribe that Tony is out for blood against all 4 who voted against him. Good thing for them that Lou and Sala threw them under the bus and told Tony they were nice and didn’t flip.

On the walk back to Hermosa, Shannon and Georgia plan what to tell their tribe about everything they found out at the duel. Only telling them that Tony was blindsided, but making sure to tell the rest of their young’uns alliance the full truth.

Tony is alone on Redemption and he wants to slay Shay in a duel.

Much like in the underrated Survivor: San Juan Del Sur Hermosa’s winning secret seems to be eating all their rations and Barb and Nate are not happy about it. Cheer up Nate, it’s fine, you’ll be at Ponderosa before the food runs out!

Izzy makes a sand cake for Sala to celebrate his daughter’s birthday which is one of those lovely gestures that seems to mean nothing in the game. The whole tribe sings Happy Birthday in Maori, which is also lovely.

Jak has a nice discussion about when people are having a shit. Barb and Mike haven’t had a shit yet. Barb is a bit sick of Jak’s childish humour, which is part of the plan he laid out last week; to be a moron and let people think he’s a moron. So far so good Jak!

Lou thinks she is bringing Avi into the alliance with Shay and Sala, they want to carry Tom for challenge purposes. Izzy is in trouble here.

Challenge time: it’s oddly an endurance challenge, four members of each tribe stand on a small foothold between two walls, after ten minutes they move to a smaller foothold, then they move again, last one standing wins immunity for their tribe. Georgia looks like Parvati up there but Izzy starts to wobble on the second hold. Everyone does make it down to the final smallest hold.  Eventually it’s Lou vs three Hermosas. Shannon falls but Lou just cannot manage it and drops out. That’s two in a row for Hermosa and Mogoton is starting to look like they could get Ulonged. I don’t understand why Shay didn’t attempt this challenge instead of Izzy, she’s extremely tall and thin which should have suited it. It was insinuated yesterday that she is lazy and I think that might be right.

It’s raining and miserable but at least there aren’t too many American Survivors watching or they’d be screaming on twitter about how unfair it is these soft Kiwis have been given rain jackets. Shay is pretty upset that her bible is soaked through, she’s had it for a long time and it’s got a lot of notes from when she was a Mormon missionary. Good on her though because she’s not letting her religion hold her back from playing hard.

The post-immunity scramble is a shit show. Shay wants Tom and is taking Lou and Izzy with her. Avi wants Izzy and has Sala and Tom. Tom doesn’t want to vote for Izzy, he wants it be Shay. I think he’s right, Shay has shown she’s willing to turn on anyone. If Avi, Tom and Izzy could get together and all vote for Shay and let Sala vote for Izzy then they could 3-2-1 this. Tom makes his pitch to Izzy and Lou to vote for Shay when he should be talking to Avi about it.

At Tribal everyone talks about how strong the other tribe is. Tom sees that there is a split in the Hermosa tribe and there is the ability to get flippers if they go into a merge early. He talks to Lou when he says that early alliances aren’t always the best thing for you. Izzy digs hard. She tries to sell how hard she is working.
It’s vote reading time. Matt has not improved in his reading of them. Izzy is the 3rd person voted out of Mogoton. She was the easiest vote this round but I can’t help but think for Tom and Avi they needed to try and get Izzy onboard to get rid of Shay.

In the end Shay voted for Lou, I suspect to try and create tension between Lou and Avi/Tom and Lou herself voted for Tom. Lou is starting to make a habit of not voting for the person she and her alliance target, yet she still sees the original target go home. If her tactic is to keep the blood off her hands eventually her alliance will get sick of it.

Survivor NZ Edgic Episode 4: “The Only Edgic Jeff Pitman has ever enjoyed”

It’s amazing how every episode supports the edgic’s week one conclusion that Jak is winning Survivor NZ.

Kemper Boyd
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Kemper Boyd

Kemper Boyd became a fan of Survivor after watching Cook Islands because of all the press about the theme, she managed to watch every season by the start of Fiji and has been watching and rewatching ever since. Oh and she's super British so that explains the extra U's in words.

Favourite seasons: HvV, Pearl Islands, Cook Islands, Micronesia, SJDS

Favourite players: Sandra, Kim, Courtney, Parvati, Yul, Nat Anderson
Kemper Boyd
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33 thoughts on “Survivor NZ Recap – Episode 3 & 4

    1. I’m going with Barb myself. Two weeks of WoTS1 and then a DSTS3? If that doesn’t say winner, I don’t know what does. (Probably events that occurred in the show, but I’m trusting Kemper’s chart here.)

      1. Plus, I bet when they say her name, it sounds like they’re saying “Bob,” but like, “Baab.”

    1. Except you as a viewer have some basic knowledge of players’ characters in returnee seasons. Plus pre-game alliances tend to fall apart and at least returnees are good enough not to talk about them.

  1. Where are ya’ll watching this? I was on the fence about it, but if Nick is podcasting about it I’m down.

    1. The podcast was really good! Pheobe this weel was awesome. I’m watching on watchseries-online.

  2. I really can’t get a handle on Jak. Like, I get that he’s dived headfirst into the ‘Joker’ role in order to ingratiate himself into the young alliance, but I have no idea what he’s really like and how much of this is an act. Also, what’s his gameplan? Shannon at least seems perfectly aware that she’s number four in that alliance but I’m not sure if Jak a) realises he’s five and b) has any plans of how to upend that. Although having said that I suppose it’s still early days yet and if they keep winning it’s not something he has to think about for a while.

    1. I don’t think Jak will be able to up end it. I think it’s much more likely we see Georgia and Shannon move together if they find an opportunity and rwas on.

    2. But wasn’t Shannon’s argument that she is on the bottom of her alliance that she heard them speaking about a F4 alliance of Mike, Georgia, Jak, and Lee?

      1. Yeah you’re right, but I was kind of assuming that they were just telling Jak that to make him feel comfortable, and that Shannon’s friendship(?) with Georgia would actually make her the fourth spot. I could be completely wrong though, but it just seems like Jak is the most ‘odd one out’ of that group.

  3. I’m glad there is so much coverage of NZ Survivor. Good cross-pollination.

  4. Things that I generally don’t like on Survivor:

    – We’re family, because we’ve known each other for like five days.
    – Fucking 90 minute episodes that don’t have a vote. Why do they always badly screw up the pacing?
    – Giving players mosquito nets and bibles and other various luxury items.
    – Some idiot who tells the opposition tribe that he’s going to work with them if he makes it out of redemption in order to get back at those that voted him out, while in the presence of the only people from his original tribe that had any loyalty to him. (Seriously though, “I can’t stand backstabbing, so I’m going to backstab the people that didn’t backstab me to get back at the other backstabbers” has got to be the dumbest old man logic I’ve ever seen on Survivor.)
    – People in general revealing far too much information at the redemption duels and not seeming to realize it.
    – Someone thinking that an alliance of four that has existed for a few days is some kind of eternal blood oath that must never be broken.
    – Folding the votes length wise.
    – Has anyone even tried to look for an idol? I realize the show would probably not show that if there aren’t any idols hidden. And if there aren’t then why not? This is excruciatingly boring otherwise.

    1. These are valid issues. To sine degree we have to treat this as season 1 and believe that it’s starting from zero strategy wise. I don’t think there are as many big Survivor fans as in Australian Survivor to be using stuff they’ve already learnt from watching US Survivor.

      1. I get that it’s a blank slate for many in the audience and probably about half the players. I just wish the show would do a better job of setting the tone. They seem actively interested in it being a show about personal relationships and loyalty/mateship over all else, because that’s all we seem to be shown, in extra large portions. I suppose that can’t be avoided, but it really makes me question whether I want to devote 2-1/2 hours of time to it a week. At least on Australian Survivor they were throwing everything against the wall to see what would stick (and that was mostly an utter failure too, but for different reasons.)

        In my ideal world, you would launch a new series using the “early modern” form of Survivor: 6×3 or 10×2, 39 days, one episode per week, no Redemption Island or Exile Island, one swap, merge at 12, final 3, hidden immunity idols available but no other special advantages or twists. But for some reason we never seem to get that. The multiple episodes per week must be a business decision since it allows selling more ad time, but I just can’t justify it at all from a creative perspective; all it does is wreck momentum and/or require insane changes like 55 days.

        1. Honestly I agree with you. The fact it’s 2 hours (I watch a cut with no adverts) with only one vote out and one redemption duel makes it really hard to want to watch. I tried to look up how many episodes it is because I was starting to regret committing to this blog. But I think some of the problems stem from having a tirbe lose the first two immunities and have it feel like we’ve spent all our time with them.
          The multiple episodes a week thing is the general structure of most Autralian and New Zealand reality tv. The only ones I think that did a single episode were the Next Top Model franchises there. Masterchef Au, Aus Survivor, the Block (both Au and NZ) have multiple episodes a week.

          1. As much as we made fun of “55 days, 24 people”, it makes sense with the two-hour format. Survivor NZ feels severely underpopulated starting with 16 (and in effect, 14).

      2. There’s at least one, but she got booted in the first episode!

        I always feel like US Survivor episodes are much too rushed. I would be happy with two-hour episodes. Basically I’d like all the deleted scenes that get posted online included in the broadcast episode, plus pre-challenge strategizing and schoolyard picks, plus the pre-tribal edited to show us exactly how the vote formed rather than to maximize the suspense of the vote read. But oh man, AU Survivor and Survivor NZ make me believe that my version of Survivor would be super boring.

        1. I think 60 minutes of tv per boot not including adverts would be great. 100 minutes is too many

  5. I think Tom knows that he’s seen as a threat down the line and a little shady. He probably felt that he could have pitched Shay to either Izzy and Lou or Izzy and Avi, but to do both would around suspicion (worst case: Lou, Izzy, and Avi vote out Tom for being shady). In the end you have to assume people are rational, but Izzy and Lou were probably so locked into voting for Tom that they weren’t really listening to him. But if they couldn’t round up a third Tom vote they should have jumped at the chance to vote out not-Izzy.

    1. There is a good chance that’s true but Tom needed to do a better job with Izzy as they were the two outsiders.

    2. Tom was already partially on the chopping block; the last thing he needed was to put more of a target on himself by targeting who for all accounts is at least one of the leaders of the tribe.

      It was already very risky to throw that idea to Lou, and Lou was a good friend of Izzy (so much so that she didn’t want to vote for her). Avi has no reason whatsoever to try to save Izzy, and he could (understandably) be quite pissed if the person he has been so far trying to save goes on and tries to turn this on one of his alliance partners.

  6. I agree with what has been said, one 60 min episode with the duel/tribal would be perfect. I sort of want to keep watching to find out how things unfold but putting aside almost 2 hours for it each week makes me hesitant to continue.

    – Tony letting lose at the duel was very underwhelming. He ended up thanking people. I guess he had the wrong crowd.
    – Said below, but if contestants continue to mention how funny Jak is, it’d be nice if we actually got to see him being funny. If the toilet humour stuff was meant to be funny though, I do not need to hear more from him.
    – I hope someone throws Shay’s bible into the fire because a) camp life is incredibly boring to watch, some chaos would be good b) Religious preaching on Survivor is literally my least favourite thing to watch and I would get so much enjoyment out of seeing a bible going up in flames. Praise Satan.
    – Once again there wasn’t a single funny moment.
    – Shannon seems to be the savviest player at the moment. She seems to be putting careful thought into each move, no matter how small, and is actually open to working with anyone to get further. Her confessionals are insightful and I enjoy listening to them. She also seemingly didn’t try to work both sides for too long, and is being inoffensive/polite towards everyone.
    – Avi also seems pretty switched on and is navigating himself through the pre-merge quite well with a few options available.
    – Nate and Mike should not have been allowed so much screen time. Painful.

    People I like: Shannon
    People that are OK: Avi, Tom, Izzy, Lou (Maybe? It’s borderline. She’s a country girl, we get it).
    Pls stop talking: everyone else.

    1. I’m wondering if a lot of the humour is too NZ-specific and potentially going over non-NZ’ers heads? (Although I think Aussies would probably recognise it)
      For example, Sala describing his butt cheeks as “Mallowpuffs” and Matt calling the idol “old mate idol” are pretty funny to me but maybe don’t make a lot of sense to others…?

      1. Hmm I don’t know, perhaps. I’m Australian and I don’t think I had a huge issue understanding any of the NZ-specific stuff and still didn’t find anything particularly funny. We use so many of the same phrases/words/abbreviations. We don’t call them Mallowpuffs – I had to look that up, but to be honest I don’t even remember him saying that, so that may have been a funny moment I missed/didn’t get. “Old mate idol” probably got a smile out of me, because that’s so NZ/AUS specific and you’d never hear it on the US version.

        I don’t really think it’s a cultural thing though, personally. There might be a few mildly funny fleeting moments but I think the major problem is that none of the characters have strong enough personalities so no one really clashes and so there isn’t any drama. The drama is usually when we get the funny moments. I don’t know, maybe we don’t need drama but it’d be nice if someone at least did something slightly amusing so they’d have a bit more to talk about and so we’d at least get a few lighter moments. The best they had to work with in the last two episodes was Sala skinny dipping and Jak making toilet jokes and I personally don’t think either of those scenes were entertaining. I’m glad you’re finding fun moments to enjoy though.

        1. Yeah, I guess the ‘fun’ parts are definitely relative (I like Sala’s jokes but I’ll take a hard pass on Jak’s toilet “humour”), but you’re right that they are few and far between. I think the main thing that’s reducing the fun quotient is that there doesn’t seem to be a single player who’s capable of doing funny confessionals.

          1. Yeah, seems that way, most of the confessionals fall quite flat. I sort of want to give the contestants the benefit of the doubt by saying, “Oh well, they haven’t really had to react to anything big yet”, or blame the editing, or blame first week nerves.. but unfortunately the truth is that not many of them seem to have the right personality to create entertaining reality television.

    2. I agree with all you have written.
      Let’s talk Lou, she’s 18 and seems currently to be playing a good game but my worry with her is this saving face by voting for someone who isn’t in trouble so she has plausible deniability to people voted off. People will get sick of it and it shows a lack of strength to play the game.

      1. Yeah, I am having trouble placing Lou.

        Yeah, I agree – I’m really not enjoying that tactic of hers to not commit to the majority vote. It’s the mark of a less than average player. It’s a bad idea for so many reasons – lack of strength to play the game, like you said, which can also translate as being too emotional. On top of that, it makes her look like an unreliable alliance member, it makes whoever she voted for as a throwaway angry at her specifically if they find out, and it means that her majority alliance can be undermined more easily, because the minority might potentially need less numbers for a blindside. She’s clearly done a good job forming meaningful relationships though, so good on her for that, the strategy is just lacking a bit at the moment and hopefully she’ll start to fully commit to a majority vote.

        I think Tom, on the other hand, has a lot of potential. He was willing to vote for his number one ally to survive, so he clearly knows what has to be done. It’s a shame he started off so poorly. Some of it must come down to how he acted in the first few days of the game, but at the same time everyone for some reason came in with the pre-conceived notion that he had friends over the other side and that he couldn’t be trusted. I guess it’s highly likely that he may have been sitting near people like Lee, Jak and Mike pre-game maybe just doing his own thing and maybe that’s why.

  7. So, I finally caught up with the comments on the Survivor NZ. So far I’m liking it, but I liked Australian Survivor, so I just feel this style is more my cup of tea.

    About the first episode, it is funny that for the entire first episode I was like, “Well, they are obviously not going to be out of the game; are they switching the tribes of the people voted out?” And as a Survivor fan I naturally noticed immediately how Matt (is that right?) never said “voted out of the game,” but only “voted out of the tribe.” But I never for a moment saw it coming that it was RI! I literally didn’t even consider it. RI twist is just so down low on my list of twists to do when you can’t think of anything else to change, that I couldn’t fathom why they would put it on their first season. (I now guess it is because of time, so they have more things to show.)

    About this week, I just can’t understand why they put a 60 minutes episode with absolutely nothing, to follow with a 45 mins episode that is basically an entire normal episode of Survivor. They had so much time to fill in the first hour, that they even repeated stuff. I noticed at least one confessional by Sala that he said exactly the same thing as in another confessional he had already given before. (I don’t think that they played the confessional twice, but it was exactly the same thing he was saying in both.) If I were to recommend a friend to watch Survivor NZ, I would just tell him to skip Episode 3.

    Episode 4, however, I really liked it. The show has plenty of time, and not too many people, so we get to know everyone. We also get nice scenes like the birthday cake or the bad toilet jokes, which are things that we don’t usually see in American Survivor anymore. As I felt with AU Survivor last year, this season gives me a huge nostalgia for early Survivor seasons, which I really like.

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