By Josh Wigler
Man Power: Nobody ever said SURVIVOR was fair or easy, a point that was proven thousands of times over with the most recent reward challenge that pitted man versus woman. As arguably the season’s most physical challenge to date, the men’s team had a clear cut advantage going into the competition, and as expected, they thoroughly dominated. They did so without blinking an eye or suffering even a moment of guilt, as they quickly declined Probst’s offer to hand the reward off to the ladies. Chivalry isn’t dead, folks — it simply never existed in the game of SURVIVOR.
Chasing Ladies: Was Chase foolish in backing the women over the men? I don’t think so. For one, Dan really is so weak that despite the combined strength of the rest of his teammates, there was a very real chance that his declining physical state could have bogged the whole team down. Also, Chase has really solidified his position with Holly, Jane and NaOnka by backing their efforts. Already tight with many of the guys in the game, the move only further strengthened his social ties with the girls. Not the worst decision in the world, even if Brenda, his former fling, wasn’t so impressed.
Leading the Pack: At the end of the day, there are really only two people out there actively playing this game with a reasonable shot at the title: Sash and Brenda. Whether or not they can get the votes to fuel their victory is another story, but they definitely are calling the shots, so much so that their position in the final three is all but guaranteed at this point — unless somebody calls them out for their positions at the top of the food chain, just as Marty did with Jane last week. If either Brenda or Sash are left around long enough to make it to the top two or three, there’s a very real shot that they’ll walk out of this game with a million dollar bonus in their pocket. Something could still derail their plan, but I’m not convinced that there’s anyone out there smart enough to topple the current king and queen of Nicaragua.
Marty’s Last Stand: At long last, Marty is gone… and believe it or not, I’m bummed out. I know I’ve given him a hard time throughout the season, but truthfully, Marty was one of the most compelling personalities out there in Nicaragua. With him gone, there are few people left to harp on about. NaOnka continues to be a talking point — and man, her performance at this last tribal council was simply stellar, to the point that even Probst didn’t have anything left to say — but Marty, man… Marty was Marty. Not a great player, but a decent player that thought he was great, and was fun to watch (and, yes, make fun of) because of it. In the end, the fact that he was able to go out on a six-to-four vote is actually pretty impressive. I’m looking forward to seeing what he has to say at the final episode’s tribal council.
Next Time on SURVIVOR: The Survivors stumble upon something so horrible, something so ungodly, that crying ensues and Benry declares this experience to be “the day from hell.”
Josh is an entertainment reporter based out of New York City. He is commanded with ruthless efficiency by his office manager, Pardo the cat, and writes regularly for MTV News, Comic Book Resources, Spinoff Online and more. He’s a SURVIVOR fanatic and he definitely would have handed over his reward to one of the female competitors, because he’s a good dude and mothers love him. (Seriously, ladies, call me!) Follow him on Twitter: @roundhoward.