Polynesian Pete Report - Episode Three
The Martyr Fights Back
The Polynesian Pete Report is a weekly look at the political intrigue and alliance related trends occurring in the tribes. Who is wheeling? Who is dealing? And of course, who is reeling?
Week Three was very intriguing, from a game play standpoint, and all illusions of tribe loyalty over alliance loyalty have now been thoroughly shattered. This group is already collectively playing far better than the so-called all-stars from last season. There is no room for any mistakes here, and this weekís bootees learned that harsh lesson all too soon.
There can be no doubt that the leader, ruler, boss, top dog, theÖ wellÖ SargeÖ of the Lopevi tribe is Lea. He immediately takes the leader role in every challenge, and he generally has control of the camp. So complete is his power that JP and Brady, knowing they are in trouble, didnít even consider the thought of trying to get Rory on board and look for ways to attack Sarge. No. Their best idea was to show fealty to the King and hope to get him to go after Rory instead.
The big problem with that approach is that it is short term at best. Sarge already has a pretty good team on his hands, so JPís offer was pretty hollow compared to the risk. Therefore, at best, he might have agreed to boot Rory, but that still leaves JP next on the block.
Brady is clearly in trouble now. He was JPís number one side kick, and barring a tribe mix-up or catastrophic event, he is going home next.
I have to say I was pretty impressed with John K (going forward in this article, he will just be John). He won the individual immunity and got to go back to Yasur and decide who would receive immunity in that tribe. He was a bit overbearing at first, but his overall plan of trying to figure out alliances and beyond that, not anger them in the process, was sound. He did learn a lot about the conflicts in Yasur, and I think the only person he rubbed the wrong way was Mia, and we know that doesnít matter now.
That said, he is in trouble too given his loyalty to JP and Brady. However, he is not next up on the block, so I suspect before they get to him, either Rory will have worn out his welcome, or the tribe mix-up will happen. Thus he is probably is okay shape for now.
Chris did a good job of keeping Sarge focused on the boot plan. The contrast here between the men and women who established majorities is startling. The Sarge Alliance is staying on track, despite cracks in their team. As Chris said, there is time enough to deal with that later. This is an important Survivor lesson. Keep your alliance in tact, and use it to your advantage. They are executing perfectly in this regard.
As for Rory, he is toast at some point. Not now, and perhaps not in the near term, but letís face it, he has no chance to win. The strategy of separating yourself from your tribe has yet to work, and I canít imagine a scenario where it would.
Chad and Travis continue to roll along under the radar. I think Chad has the most longevity of the two. He seems level headed and wise in that he does not get involved in any of the conflicts. Plus, as he showed this week, he is potentially quite capable of competing well when it comes to individual immunity down the road.
While Sargeís overt leadership on the guyís side is very clear, the ladies have a covert leader taking charge, and I am now convinced that Scout is playing a very strong game.
Somehow, in the last two weeks, not only has she deflected most all attention away from how pathetic she is in challenges, but she has been able to engineer defections from the formerly majority group. Last week she stirred the pot using Dolly as her pawn. This week she somehow convinced Lisa to change sides and vote out Mia. This week was the key vote though, as now she can move more into the open in her leadership, confident in the knowledge that the young womenís alliance is now completely shattered.
Twila and Mia had a big blow out, and in the end, Twila survived it. She is also aligned with Scout, so she must be safe right?
I say no. In fact, I think she is on the hot seat. Scout, if she is playing the game I think she is, will soon realize that Twila as a partner does not translate into surviving a merge. She does need to bring in more reasonable players like Ami, and easily manipulated players like Eliza (just let her talk to you as long as she wishes and I am sure you would have her vote). Twilaís attitude is divisive, and I think Scout will have to offer her up as a sacrifice to the rest of the group in order to get things under control.
Julie talks a good game, but she has been taken completely by surprise the past two votes and simply shows that she understands the concept of the game well, but is not yet adept at playing it. She needs to learn quickly how to follow through on her ideas and keep her alliance in tact. I actually think she could still pull it together, but she would have to avoid falling into Scoutís potential trap of focusing attention on Twila and instead, Julie needs to go after Scout.
Ami is playing the classic under the radar game, and I have to think that Johnís move to give her immunity was probably something she didnít welcome at all. Far better to keep the focus on others in the tribe. Nevertheless, I think Ami is safe to the merge.
Eliza is amazing. All that time on the island, lack of food, hardly any sleep, and little energy to spare, and yet she can still burn a thousand calories per hour just talking. I canít figure out how to evaluate her game. Clearly she is annoying people, yet anytime the focus turns to her she is able to escape the trap. Itís a cop out to say, but she could go far, or be gone next week. I need to see more dataÖ preferably with the mute button on.
I Guess That Didnít Work
For JP, his fate was sealed by the timing of the next tribal council combined with not winning immunity. He knew he was going, and given only an afternoon to try to hatch his plan with Sarge, he didnít stand much of a chance at all. Despite MBís usual attempt at misdirection, did anyone really doubt JP would be the loser?
JP simply lost when his attempt at building a majority failed in the first episode. He was never able to recover because Sarge maintained control of his majority alliance. Itís not that JP was a bad player, it is that Sarge is better.
As for Mia, she put herself in the crosshairs when she had her blow up with Twila. Now, I have a lot of sympathy for her. I find Twila annoying, and clearly Mia nailed it when she pointed out that Twila was trying to play the martyr worker card. Nevertheless, she could have learned from Ami, and just kept it to herself. Donít anger tribe mates if there is nothing to gain from it. Mia still could have won the expected tiebreaker, but Lisaís backstab sealed her fate. The lesson being, if she had not gotten herself in trouble to begin with, Lisaís eventual backstab would have landed on someone else, such as Eliza.
Lisa and Eliza argue. Nothing good comes of it. See you then!
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