The 20 past Survivors that we all voted for to return to the game – or least some of the ones that I voted for – finally get the chance to jump in the water and make the most of their second chance at Survivor. Some of them do, at least, others have forgotten how to cut wood. Others seem to be obsessed with accessories. In other words, it’s just like any other season of Survivor. Wacky and unpredictable.
Who knew that Shirin would be viewed as a sage Survivor analyst? Who knew that we would get not one, but two, anecdotes from older male Survivors about how their kids have either true crushes or man crushes on younger Survivors? Who knew that Abi would be just as crazy as ever? Oh wait, that third one was completely expected.
What I didn’t expect was that yoga would be used as a negative for poor Vytas. I don’t believe that it was the actual practice of yoga that got him in trouble – it was just an excuse to get him out. Shirin said it more accurately – it was his connection to Terry that was the threat. It seems that Aras and Terry became best buds after Exile Island – and thus, Terry and big brother are now bros too. And Shirin has learned this little fact and used it to take him out.
One more unexpected fact…Vytas and I have the exact same type of underwear. Me Undies. Great website – even better under garments. Good taste, Vytas. I will say…I make it work better. Just saying.
In all seriousness, I was sad to see him go. However, I am fairly sure that I’ll be saying that a lot this season. Most of these past Survivors were enjoyable to watch the first time around. Even Kass. That’s the sign of a good piece of casting – this group. Think about what the vast majority of them all have in common – a real true love of the game, and a burning hunger to play it again. That’s what makes it a potentially great season.
Case in point – Jeff Varner. I will admit – it’s been a long time since I watched Australia. And it is not one of my favorite seasons. I remember that he got a little bit screwed over thanks to Skupin’s injury and Colby’s excellent fake out. Other than that…I don’t remember a thing about Varner. And here he is. And boy, wasn’t he interesting to watch. Remember him at the live vote last season? He leapt out of his seat like it was full of spikes. And he is playing hard – a bit awkwardly, but he’s playing hard. 14 years later.
Great job, Survivor. Now let’s hope that it plays out well.
Five Best Things I Saw
1 – Kelley Wentworth. I KNOW! I’m surprised too. Going into this – I thought she was a bad selection for the season. Honestly. And now I feel like an idiot. Don’t mess it up, Kelley. Even though I’m a little pissed for my notetaking shorthand that we have two Kelly Ws on the roster. She’ll have to be E from now on. E with the sexy high blue socks. E with the hidden immunity idol. It may have been one of my favorite pieces of editing ever seen before on this show – watching E looking back and forth from the ongoing challenge to the spot where she knew the idol was hidden. Amazing. Would she grab it despite having all 19 other players right there? Yes. Yes she will. This gorgeous blonde woman actually has balls. And that’s what Survivor does for us all.
2 – Kelly Wiglesworth. She’s back. And she will now be No E because I need symmetry. That’s right – this guy is giving a stupid nickname to one of the most important figures in the history of Survivor. But she’s back. And she is clearly not very interested in talking about how she lost to Richard Hatch. By one vote – because Greg was a massive flake. And because this is Survivor…she of course got another shot at the first ever challenge. And lost it again. Of course. Watching her and Varner go again – you can see that time is not an ally of Survivor players. It’s friggin hard to do. I am pulling for No E – there are no flaky crazy people this season like Greg, right?
3 – Abi. Oh yeah. That’s right. Someone our voters watched the first time around and say…oh yeah, let’s put this crazy person back on TV. She has told us that she doesn’t want to be crazy. But because this is TV – you know that this cannot happen. The crazy will win. It will win quickly. It will manifest faster than Francesca can get voted out of Survivor. It already has started – someone took her bracelet, and that person is PG. Um, what? Why would a professional jewelry maker (really) travel out to Cambodia to go on television and steal a piece of crap bracelet from a crazy woman? And if the previews from next week are any indication – we get night vision drama from her. The best part? She keeps saying how much she wants to not be crazy. It’s like the person we all know that complains about the assholes they date…and then they keep dating assholes. It’s just going to happen. Just run with it.
4 – Survivor producers. I love the fact that we are in Season 31 and the show keeps finding cool stuff to do. I loved how they had the Survivors board a boat to get stuff – that’s been done before – but then making them race to get to another boat to claim a big bag of rice. First of all – Big Bag of Rice is my favorite swing band. Second of all – so cool. I loved how Big E tried to swim all the way. Didn’t she learn from Steph? And then had to have Wooooooo! bail her out after SuperJoe tried to pass her.
5 – Insane Bro Posse. I don’t like this too much, I just wanted to come up with a fun nickname for them. We have Namesake, Savage and SuperJoe banded together on one tribe and poor Stephen Fishbach left on the outside. They are broing out so much that a football game almost broke out. They started watching old episodes of “Entourage.” One of them single handedly took down a tree. Ok, that last one actually happened. And poor Fishy couldn’t even cut a branch – and he got a sad goofy music montage showing him failing to actually cut anything. This guy finished second in his season – and he is getting the goofy edit after one episode. As someone who has always related to the nerds like Fishy – I am hoping he manages to put something together with Keith and the ladies on the tribe. But, doesn’t look good.