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Thread: Survivor: Pirate Report (Day 30) - Grandma kills Grandson, Says it is Fair Play

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    Starbucks is your friend Bill's Avatar
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    Survivor: Pirate Report (Day 30) - Grandma kills Grandson, Says it is Fair Play

    Pirate Report (Day 30)
    This Just In: Grandma Kills Grandson, Says it is All About Fair Play

    The Pirate Report is a weekly look at the political intrigue and alliance related trends occurring in the Balboa tribe the rest of the way to the final vote. Who is wheeling? Who is dealing? And of course, who is reeling? This is not meant to be a recap though, and for that, you will want to read fluffís outstanding recaps this season.

    This week we were presented with an interesting case study in ethics, or the lack thereof, as it applies to the game of Survivor. Here is the question for those of your playing the home game. Which is worse, lying about the death of a family member to try to gain favor in the game, OR, allowing another tribe mate to take the rap, and likely the eventual boot, for something you did?

    On the one hand, Jon didnít specifically do anything to hurt anyone elseís chances in the game. In fact, aside from requiring additional security around him at the reunion show, I donít see where this helped him. On the other side, we have Sandra, who sold out her primary remaining ally, and likely ended Christaís chance for a million dollars. I donít doubt that Jon will be crucified for his lie, but Sandraís was worse, in my opinion, as it applies to the game. Not that I am saying a lie about the game is bad mind you.

    The game is getting ruthless as we get down to the wire, and any miscalculation at this point is likely to be fatal. It certainly was this week. Letís take a look at the alliances, such as they are.

    The Burton-Fairplay Alliance

    Did you see Burtonís explanation at tribal council of how alliances work? It was a perfect summation of the game. Basically, if you and your rival have something in common, then you have good reason to be allies. It is not about friendships. I say again, it is not about friendships. It is about trying to get to the final two and make $100,000 with a good chance at $1,000,000. Burton understands this well, and it saved him this week.

    Nevertheless, he is in trouble, big trouble. He should have been booted this week, but the tribes missed their shot. I am guessing he is still in the cross hairs, and is now attached to a deal Jon made, that will require him to turn on Lil. Not that he shouldnít turn on her if it gets him further in the game, but he is now going to be manipulated into hurting another jury member before it is all said and done. Either he stabs Jon, or he stabs Lil. Darrah and Tijuana already know the truth of his plans, thanks to Agent Sandra. Too bad Burton, you were playing pretty well for a while there, even if the whole twist thing saved your undeserving butt the first time.

    What about Fairplay? As I said above, I honestly donít think this big lie helps him much. Yes, it is shocking and reprehensible, but really, after the way he has acted for the past month, and given the competitiveness of the remaining players, I donít know that he gained anything from it, other than perhaps a job offer from James Carville to help in future elections.

    Now, if I were on Survivor, I would not have gone as far as Jon did here with this lie. I think it is just bad karma in general. But, given that it is not against the rules, he decided to go with it, thinking it would help him. If in fact we assume that he did gain sympathy, to the point that he might sway some votes in the final two, I say he executed very poorly on the plan, and he is lucky the reward went the way it did.

    Poorly you ask? Yes, poorly, because he gains nothing by having his friend stay on the island, and in fact takes a lot of risk. He burned up a lot of that sympathy trying to win the reward challenge. I think it would have played to his advantage to lose the challenge, thus throwing the guilt on to whomever won. He is fortunate that he and his buddy got the time to themselves, so that one of them didnít slip up. Even then though, he takes a hit, in that at this point of the game, it is a very bad idea to isolate yourself from everyone else. All in all, it was a huge evolution in the nastiness of the game, all for no gain whatsoever.

    Perhaps even more surprising this week, Jon acted to save Burton. Should he have? I think so, and I wonder if he got wind of Tijuana eavesdropping? He sure acted like he did.

    If Burton goes, given Tijuana and Darrah knowing about the private discussions, that means that Jon has no allies at all. Lil was always loyal to her fantasies about Burton while Jon was just an afterthought. So at this point in the game, he needed to change the focus off of his boy. He did so masterfully, going along with Tijuanaís plan to oust Burton, as long as T agreed to boot Christa after that. Then he immediately turned Tijuanaís own words against her with Sandra and Christa, and did so in a way that let them feel unthreatened. After the lie, I was getting ready to change his name to Jon Idiotplay, and then he had to go and pull this off, which was a tremendous move at that point in the game.

    Jon still doesnít have much hope in the game. Last week I speculated that he seemed to enjoy the intrigue more than actually following a plan to victory. We saw further evidence this week. He just likes the whole Fairplay persona too much in my opinion, and it will be his downfall.

    We Used to be Morganís

    Lil was relatively quiet this week. That was a refreshing change. She needs to be very cautious at this point, IF she is actually playing the game. The boot of Tijuana gives her the chance to be a swing vote yet again. If she makes a good decision, and at this point, I think decision would require her to dump Burton and Jon, then she could well go to the finals. She doesnít deserve it any more than Burton does, but she has a far better shot of being there. If the women now unite and take down the remaining men, then Lil could quickly become the lady that everyone wants to face in the final two, thinking she will be an easy opponent to beat.

    Darrah is probably less concerned about Tijuanaís departure than you might think. On the surface, it appears that she no longer has any allies. However, now being down to herself, she can, if she actually starts playing the gameÖ yes, a dubious thought at bestÖ go a long way. How? Well, she will need to pick a side. She only gets one shot at this, and it would help if she could find a way to drag Lil along for the ride. Sandra hates Jon, and it could cloud her otherwise solid judgement. Darrah needs to find a way to divert the focus back to Jon versus Sandra, otherwise she is next to go. However, if things turn into a war between Jon and Sandra, then Darrah can be there to pick up the scraps, and the scraps could be a final two berth.

    I hear you laughing. Final two? Darrah? Yes, it could happen, and if she gets there, she can win. First, she has made no real enemies, so against the right opponent, she can win a vote. Secondly, she has competed well in most challenges, even the physical ones, so if Burton goes, I like her odds of winning some late endurance tests. Thirdly, going back to Yahoo Platinum archives (and why you should have to pay for content that is potentially important to understanding the show is another question entirely), you can see that Darrah is not quite as clueless about the game as she is portrayed, even if she is pursuing an under the radar strategy.

    Despite all of that, she has to make a move this week, otherwise it will be luck if she goes any further.

    The Sacrifice Rupertís Fish Alliance

    Sandra is playing a ruthless game, and I am enjoying it. I sometimes wonder if the mutual hate between her and Jon is a fabrication. Wouldnít the best ďbig lieĒ be to find out that these two are actually working together? Okay, so there is no evidence of that, but I guess I was hoping for much bigger ďbig lieĒ than what we got.

    Back to Sandra, who was masterful this week. First, she has played up a lot of anger over Rupertís departure, likely trying to keep Christa in line. Letís not forget that she herself had been plotting to boot Rupert for sometime now, and may have thrown a vote at Jon last week to ensure big Rupeís departure. I bring all of that up again just simply to point out that she is a better actor than Jon is, and Rupert fans, please donít blindly throw your support to Sandra because you think she is being loyal to him, even in departure. Nothing could be further from the truth. She is reacting to the trends in the game, and playing off of them.

    Secondly, Sandra laid the groundwork with Tijuana for winning over the votes of T and Darrah. Getting her to sneak up Burton and Jon to listen in was brilliant. Even sneakier still, she was willing to turn against all of that work, and take a new opportunity offered to her by Jon. That, my friends, is thinking on your feet, and makes her the dangerous player she is.

    As for letting Christa take the heat for the fish dumping, I can understand why she did it. I donít think it was a case of being afraid at the moment, I think she saw another good opportunity, and let it happen. There is a great camera shot of her smirking as she walks away from the campfire, while letting Burton and Jon rip into Christa. She later confessed that she basically started an argument with Jon to keep the focus off of her time around the fish, and it worked.

    The question now is, did she make the right choice in not booting Burton? I think she may have made a mistake here. She had her shot, Darrah and T, along with Christa could have easily booted first Burton, and then Jon. She seemed to buy into the idea that getting to the final four, Burton and Jon against her and Christa, was a good deal. Plus she put a lot of weight into Jon being willing to dump Lil, something she should have known they fully intended to do if she has been listening to their conversations. I donít see where she gained much there.

    Maybe she wanted to be loyal to Christa, since she knew Tijuana was gunning for her, but then if loyalty was a factor, where was she at the campfire the night before when Christa was being sacrificed. She could have admitted to it, claimed it was an accident, and it likely would have been no big deal. So no, it was not loyalty. It seems that Sandra actually thinks this path is to her advantage. If she now has shown Christa that she is looking out for her, and if she can rope in Darrah (because after all, it was Jon who betrayed them), then together they all can work on Lil. I think it is a riskier path than just booting Burton that night, but I can see where she is looking at this from a jury vote perspective. Yes, higher risk, but if it works, she likely has not angered anyone on the jury, aside from Jon, who was a lost cause anyhow.

    Now Christa on the other hand, is in trouble. She seems to have shifted to Sandraís coattails smoothly now that her favorite tie dyed shirt wearer is gone. Christa will soon learn that ďloyaltyĒ as defined by Rupert, is not something Sandra is interested in pursuing. She is in the same status of Lil, that being a pawn. Worse still, she is not the type of pawn anyone wants to take to the finals, so once this initial bloodbath occurs, and either Jon or Sandra win, then Christa will be given her walking papers shortly thereafter. If yet another food related controversy (and the un-shown story is that she had a huge blowup with Ryano over food) arises, then the rest of the Balboaís may decide that she needs to go next.

    I Guess That Didnít Work

    I was happy to see Tijuana plotting a path to victory. Perhaps she has been playing all along, and a victim to MBís heavy editing, but either way, she had some good ideas, and her plan could have worked, but she forgot two key things:

    1. Darrah won immunity, not her, so maybe Darrah should have been the ringleader.
    2. Jon canít be trusted.

    I think she failed to see the game from Jonís perspective. Basically she asked him to go against his ally (no problem there) but do so in a way that basically stripped Jon of any power, and potentially made him a pawn of Darrah and Tijuana. Well that just was not going to happen, and the outcome should not have been a surprise.

    She should have gone to Sandra with her ideas, she may have found a more receptive audience.

    In the end, Tijuana did pretty well to get as far as she did, given the unfair twist, Lilís defection, and the progressive elimination of former Morganís. Nevertheless, she miscalculated badly in regards to her move against Burton, and as such, was a deserving boot.

    Your comments are welcome. Email bill@fansofrealitytv.com
    Last edited by Bill; 11-29-2003 at 12:16 PM.
    "George Oscar Bluth II, aka GOB, featured magician in the best selling videotape, "Girls With Low Self Esteem" invites you to enter his world.
    -- Arrested Development, Season III

  2. #2
    RESIDENT JEDI MASTER Stargazer's Avatar
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    In the end, Sandra did pretty well to get as far as she did, given the unfair twist, Lilís defection, and the progressive elimination of former Morganís. Nevertheless, she miscalculated badly in regards to her move against Burton, and as such, was a deserving boot.
    I think you meant Tijuana here, unless I'm misreading it.

    Thanks for a great report Bill. Once again, I agree with most of your observations.
    "Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter."- Yoda

    "I'll just see where Providence takes me and try to look like I got there confidently." - Craig Ferguson

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    Starbucks is your friend Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stargazer401
    I think you meant Tijuana here, unless I'm misreading it.
    DOH!

    Thanks for the good catch
    "George Oscar Bluth II, aka GOB, featured magician in the best selling videotape, "Girls With Low Self Esteem" invites you to enter his world.
    -- Arrested Development, Season III

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    daydream believer oneTVslave's Avatar
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    Great article, Bill. I always enjoy reading your analyses.

    What I don't understand, is why Tijuana went to Jon with her plan in the first place. She was already in the majority vote with Darrah, Sandra, and Christa on her side - there was no need to inform Jon of the plan until after Burton had been removed. If Sandra had known that D and T were definitely on the same side as Christa and herself, I believe she would never have chosen Jon and Burton over the girl-alliance. Like Christy Smith last season, T's reluctance to verbally committ to Sandra led to her downfall. She felt she finally had the power, and wanted to flaunt it by making Jon think he was at her mercy.
    Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
    - Albert Einstein

  5. #5
    radmad
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    On the one hand, Jon didnít specifically do anything to hurt anyone elseís chances in the game. In fact, aside from requiring additional security around him at the reunion show, I donít see where this helped him.


    Great report, Bill, summed up the whole episode very nicely.

  6. #6
    TheFlying
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    I hear you laughing. Final two? Darrah? Yes, it could happen, and if she gets there, she can win. First, she has made no real enemies, so against the right opponent, she can win a vote. Secondly, she has competed well in most challenges, even the physical ones, so if Burton goes, I like her odds of winning some late endurance tests. Thirdly, going back to Yahoo Platinum archives (and why you should have to pay for content that is potentially important to understanding the show is another question entirely), you can see that Darrah is not quite as clueless about the game as she is portrayed, even if she is pursuing an under the radar strategy.
    Subltety doesn't seem to be your strong suit, huh.
    Last edited by TheFlying; 11-28-2003 at 06:18 PM.

  7. #7
    Courtesy and Goodwill Mantenna's Avatar
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    The Pirate Report was great and had very logical rationalizations for what went down on that bizarre show. I'm surprised no one has commented on the title: Grandma kills Grandson, Says it is Fair Play. That was hysterical!

  8. #8
    Ready? haejin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mantenna
    The Pirate Report was great and had very logical rationalizations for what went down on that bizarre show. I'm surprised no one has commented on the title: Grandma kills Grandson, Says it is Fair Play. That was hysterical!
    Ooh! I loved the title too!

    Great Pirate Report, as always!

  9. #9
    museumguy
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    I loved the title....and can only dream that the prediction comes true.......

  10. #10
    Ladyluck
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    Excellent and very perceptive analysis, Bill! I always look forward to your reports.

    I did have one small disagreement. I don't think it would have been so easy for Sandra to own up to dumping the fish. They knew she was Rupert's ally; I think there most likely would have been some suspicion that she had done it on purpose, even if she said it was an accident.

    I love the title, too!

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