In hip-hop music, a hype man supports the rappers with exclamations and interjections and attempts to increase the audience’s excitement. For Survivor: Cambodia, I’ll once again be serving as hype man for a few select players in order to help get you excited about both the player and the season. And since this is the season of second chances, I’m going to give a second chance to a player I didn’t enjoy last time:
Spencer Bledsoe. Keith Nale.
Wait! Where are you going? Just hear me out! I promise it’ll be worth it.
With every other hype post I’ve written, there has always been the chance that what I write will be read by the player that I’m writing about. That works out well for hype posts, since I’m only writing about the players I’m excited to see and the posts are pretty complimentary. And who doesn’t enjoy reading compliments?
Keith is technically on Twitter, but I’m pretty sure he just yells into his phone like a walkie-talkie and hopes that it posts. I’m only half-kidding. Marvel at his tweets, standing defiantly against capitalization, grammar, and coherence:
This last one is accidentally hilarious, which is a pretty good description of Keith in general:
In our preseason preview podcast, Andy called Kelly Wiglesworth’s interaction with the Survivor community a brilliant piece of performance art. Keith’s tweets are no different. I hope Keith can at least get enough money from Survivor to buy an iPhone, just so we start seeing tweets like “Roger that Siri what channel is the race on over”.
Let’s be clear: I don’t want Keith to win Survivor. I would not find it hilarious. (Exception: If Keith Nale, as r/Survivor has suggested, goes Keyser Soze and suddenly starts playing puppet master while giving confessionals saying “You got Naled!” That would be both hilarious and an even more amazing piece of performance art than his social media accounts.) We already had a season where the Keith won, and it was the worst season Survivor has ever had.
So why am I hyping Keith? Say a new ice cream place opens up in your neighborhood. You have a coupon for a freebie, so you stop in to “treat yo self”. The man behind the counter points to this sign and says, “Here’s what you can have. What do you want?”
It’s free, so you take vanilla. But it’d be nice if there were other choices that weren’t completely objectionable, right? That ice cream shop is Worlds Apart. If the ice cream shop were San Juan del Sur, all the flavors would be mediocre and pretty dumb, just like this analogy.
The point is that the storytelling in Survivor needs options. Last season’s “Mike and the Goat Farm” post-merge sucked because there were so many goats and they were all miserable human beings, so all the scenes that weren’t about Mike’s inevitable win were about how objectionable everyone else was. If there had been a lovable goat like Keith to inject some levity into the story, it would’ve been more enjoyable to watch. The only time it’s a terrible idea to have Keith on a season is when he has a chance to win.
Fortunately, in his preseason interview with Josh Wigler, any fears about having to endure a Keith Nale winner’s edit disappeared with this one sentence:
Coaching won’t matter anyway. Keith will be exactly what he was before. There is no subterfuge with Keith. He doesn’t intentionally fuck things up for other people. He’s not Chaos Kass. He’s Oops Keith. And people will drag him along because he’s not a winner. He’s a walking, talking, spitting Survivor participation trophy.
There’s another gem in that interview Wigler did: Keith was surprised he got voted on to the Second Chance cast because, “I’m from a small pool — I’m not from Chicago or New York. I didn’t have a big pool to pull from. So I didn’t think it was going to happen.”
Does Keith think that people went to the polls and voted for their local candidates? Did he show up at his local elementary school to cast a vote for himself? I can’t rule this possibility out.
In his preseason video with Dalton Ross, Keith is asked about what mistakes he made in San Juan del Sur. “I think the biggest mistake was not hooking up with somebody earlier,” he says, completely unaware of the existence of double entendres, “I think I need to hook up with somebody this time.” I’d suggest he aim for hooking up with the lovely Peih Gee, but he may have an uphill battle with that one given that in the “Who do you want to vote out first?” video, he says he wants her gone first. At least, I assume he means Peih Gee. What he actually says is “Phoebe.”
And the fun doesn’t stop there with the Keith preseason media. Gaze upon the gem that is the official “Meet Keith Nale” video from CBS:
Let’s take a tour through the highlights, shall we?
- Keith says he was on “Blood vs. Water…Uh, Nicaragua.” Hey, close enough!
- He can stay out here 79 days, he ain’t got nothin’ to do! Keith would have been a great member of the #Dirty30.
- The reason he said “Stick to the plan!” in the middle of a tribal council: “I don’t know why I said it, it just come out, you know? You can’t plan for stuff like that!”
Indeed, Keith. You can’t plan words! And that has never been more apparent to me than the time I uttered the words, “I’m going to write a hype post about Keith Nale.” So go forth, Second Chancers, and use this frequently-spitting man as the pawn that he is. Confuse him with your strategies. Give him your fake idols for the lolz. Just let him hang around long enough to provide us some entertainment. Because every three days Keith stays in Cambodia gets us closer to making this a reality:
John is the co-host of the Purple Rock Survivor Podcast. He can get loud too, what the fuck!
Favorite seasons: Heroes vs. Villains, Cagayan, Pearl Islands, Tocantins, Cambodia