By: Josh Wigler
If I was Brenda, Marty or Alina at last night’s Tribal Council, I would be absolutely livid right now, and if I was Jeff Probst, I would have roundhouse kicked Purple Kelly and NaOnka straight in the mouths. Because nobody likes a quitter, folks, not on SURVIVOR, and especially not this deep into the game.
There’s barely anything else to discuss with last night’s episode, which saw two of the show’s contestants drop out of the game with only 11 days left to the finish line. One of these contestants was clearly the most polarizing figure of the entire season; the other, well, we can’t exactly say she’ll be missed when we barely even knew she was there in the first place. It’s no loss on the latter, but definitely a major loss in terms of entertainment value on the former.
Most importantly, Kelly and NaOnka’s decision to quit leaves SURVIVOR NICARAGUA permanently branded with a big fat asterisk: no matter who wins this game, their victory will come at the hands of at least two people who didn’t play through to their appropriate finish. On his weekly SURVIVOR blog, Probst confirmed that both Kelly and Nay will participate in the jury this season, which is a huge slap in the face to Brenda, Marty and Alina, three people who would give anything to get back into the game. Even worse, unless the winner wins without backing from Nay or Kelly, that winner will walk away with a million dollar check co-signed by quitters. It’s still a million dollars, mind you, but it’s permanently tainted goods.
At least Probst was able to rip NaOnka apart before she was let off the hook, and after a season filled with ill will on her part, it’s hard to say she didn’t deserve the jabs, especially after her most selfish decision of all: the big-mouthed trash talker refused to give away her spot on the reward challenge to benefit the rest of her tribe mates, prompting Holly to make the selfless decision to withdraw and provide her fellow contestants with a new tarp and rice supply. That should have been NaOnka, through and through, having already announced her decision to quit the game. But in true NaOnka form, not only did she not step up to take Holly’s place, she didn’t even regret a single thing about her decision.
Make no mistake: Nay started and finished SURVIVOR NICARAGUA as the least likable contestant to have ever played this game, period. Hope it was worth America hating your guts, ma’am.
In a few short weeks, NaOnka and Kelly will have the opportunity to speak to the final three contestants during the game’s last Tribal Council. I sure hope that whatever threesome makes it to the end agrees to give both jurors the collective middle finger in response. Sure, these quitters get to vote, but they have no right to question anybody who made it to the end game after their own decision to tap out so close to the finish line.
Enough about quitters. Let’s talk about who’s still out there:
• Though they began as unlikely underdogs, both Holly and Jane have emerged as the most powerful players at this stage of the game. If either woman makes it to the final tribal council, it’ll be a tough fight to select a winner: both are working so hard, socially and physically, and both are so likable, that it’s impossible imagining only one winner between the two of them — which is exactly why I’m sure only one, or neither of them, will make it that far. Their fellow contestants aren’t the brightest SURVIVOR players of all time, but they’re not so dumb as to let both Jane and Holly make it to the end.
• Chase and Sash are sitting pretty with their hidden immunity idols, and unless they win an immunity necklace soon, they’re going to want to play those idols. Both men are huge threats — Chase from a physical standpoint, Sash from a strategic one — and their fellow tribe members would be foolish to not vote one of them out soon. Benry and Fabio, too, are likely to come under fire for their physical strength.
• As for Dan, I agree with Probst that with Nay and Kelly gone, he’s got no shot at the title. Sorry, man.
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 used to blog about SURVIVOR for The TV Addict, but he just quit. You can smuff his torch out on Twitter: @roundhoward.