Survivor: Winners At War Bonus Content Roundup – Week 6

Brad shares the best bonus scenes from the previous episode of Survivor: Winners At War.

This Week In Secret Scenes

“Is This Where The Party’s At?”

One of the running themes of these posts is that there’s an argument that this season—of all seasons—was the time for 90 minute episodes. Of course, that’s not how CBS blocks its primetime scheduling. But regardless, we’re finding quality content that just can’t get squeezed into the main edit. Last week, it was the return of Tony’s ladder, bumped for all the tribe swap exposition that must take place. This week, we have the reunion of the Marianos, preempted due to the time it takes to cover two tribes going to Tribal.

So watch this clip to see true Boston love; Amber knows that she should be sad to see Rob eliminated, but she’s beaming with an ear-to-ear smile that she’s with him. And watch it to see the rapport between all the great players (plus Danni) already sent to the Edge. If you’re watching closely, you’ll also catch that Tyson asks Rob who he gave his Fire Tokens to. It’s not explicitly stated, but this could be how Tyson knows to sell the idol nullifier to Parvati; Rob’s essentially told Tyson that she’s rich with Tokens.

“It’s Like Going To The Corner Bodega”

There are three things I like about this clip:

1. After having to team up with Jeremy to pin down an octopus, Tony practically trips over a giant clam. It’s almost like failing upwards.
2. Everyone is always praising Kim’s cooking ability. Doesn’t really mean anything, but I enjoy it.
3. There’s irony in the fact that Dakal was the tribe with extra protein, making them super confident about their chances at immunity… and they were clearly the third-place tribe in the Immunity Challenge. Even so, their loss gave us one of the best Tribals of the season (probably even the best). Seems like a fair trade-off.

“Please Lord, Protect Me Today From Those That Wish To Vote Me Out”

I will repeat again that I cannot get enough of Tony bringing Tree Mail to the tribe. But that’s a small detail in this clip; it’s primarily about Sandra’s anxiety around Day 16. It was at the same point in Game Changers that Sandra was voted out for the first time. She is very nervous about making it to Day 17, to the point that Sandra says that she wishes there wasn’t a challenge that day just so that she could guarantee that she made it past Day 16.

While it was discussed at Tribal, it is certainly interesting to hear more of Sandra’s perspective on this and see that it is a genuine anxiety for her. It causes me to wonder how she got to the point of selling her idol to Denise. Obviously Sandra felt safe enough with her numbers, and I would even say that it was rational to try to get the long-term benefit of Fire Tokens instead of “burning” an idol without receiving votes. But between the fact that anything can happen at Tribal and Sandra’s strong feelings around Day 16, I wonder if Sandra was overcompensating for whatever influence she thought Game Changers was having on her S40 game.

“I Cannot Risk Going Down To Three”

I’ll tell it to you straight: you really don’t need to watch this clip. You’ve already heard Tony read Tree Mail; this rest of this Yara clip is just Adam talking. But on the flip side, we’re all quarantined; what else are you going to do? The main interesting thing that I saw in this clip was that Yara has fashioned some legit chopsticks to eat their rice, deviating from the tried and true Survivor method of “scoop it up on a clam shell.” Again, you probably don’t need to watch this.

“No, I Don’t Need A Meat Shield. Never Have, Never Will”

This clip clocks in at about a minute-thirty, but there’s a lot to unpack here.

First, let’s discuss Jeremy. As I was watching the episode, I was wondering how loyal Jeremy would truly be to Denise long-term. I understand that he’s writing her name down out of desperation. Sandra’s “Why can’t you just say it? Don’t beat around the bush” also indicates that voting out Denise is not Jeremy’s primary objective.

But his strategy is based entirely around meat shields, and Denise’s idol play for Jeremy was to strengthen a relationship for the post-merge. Clearly, Denise is invested in the partnership; will Jeremy reciprocate though? How meaty is Denise relative to everyone else this season? I think that Jeremy’s appeal to Sandra wasn’t wholly fabricated just to survive this Tribal; I think he believes it to some degree. So if Denise ultimately doesn’t serve a purpose in Jeremy’s plans, will he try to cut her sooner rather than later?

Second, let’s talk about Sandra. As was said on this week’s pod, Sandra is great at playing from behind. Playing from the majority? Eh.

Part of this is that playing from behind forces Sandra to be adaptable. But when she feels comfortable, as she clearly did this episode, she doesn’t feel the pressure to change her strategies. Sandra is adamant that she does not need to use a meat shield strategy, but that demonstrates a disregard for how the meta-game has changed over recent seasons. It also shows that Sandra’s winning strategy was somewhat inadvertent. She isn’t recognizing that she was able to make it to the end of Pearl Islands and Heroes Vs. Villains because there were bigger fish that she could offer up. As a character, Sandra was and is iconic. But as a player, the shine is starting to dull.