Riding Coattails: Girls Rule, Boys Drool

I am still a bit confused as to why Brady took the hike to Loser’s Lodge this week instead of Rory. Is it because the members of Lopevi had a hard time trusting an FBI agent? I’m truly stumped. Nobody likes Rory. Everyone agreed that he sucked at the immunity challenge. He hogs the Hawaiian sling and then uses it to poke at rocks when he’s out wading. Was he trying to imitate the peasants in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, who spend most of their time sitting in streams and hitting the water with a sticks? What’s with this guy?

Rory joins an elite group of survivors, which includes Clay from Thailand and Osten from Pearl Islands, who appear to have no redeeming qualities whatsoever except for their ability to stay in the game for longer than three days. This is coattail riding at its finest, folks, and I am thrilled to bear witness to it. I’m not sorry that Brady is gone. He was easy on the eyes, for sure, but what kind of mischief was he ever going to stir up? Rory insists on making an ass of himself at every turn, which is infinitely more entertaining.

Like when Rory confronted Bubba about his “weakness” (missing his family)? Anyone who considers that kind of love a weakness has obviously never experienced it for himself, which is even sadder when one considers that Rory is married and has a son. Perhaps he was just telling Bubba to keep his chin up and put thoughts of loved ones on the back burner to get through the game, but it came out sounding pretty cold and insensitive. Forunately, Bubba got a chance for revenge when he threatened Rory and Sarge with a time out if they didn’t stop bickering. I seem to recall a million-dollar winner from the past using that exact same warning when a surly chef and a curly-haired vixen had it out over how to fry the green tomatoes. Could Bubba be the next Tina?

I was rather disappointed in young John’s conduct on this week’s show, as he came off a bit cocky when talking to Bubba about keeping the buff, underwear model types around and ditching the annoying weaklings. I laughed out loud as John pondered why the tribe was controlled by a bunch of old, fat guys. Hola, John, who do you think has been running this country all along? If you’re not an old, fat guy in this society, you can pretty much forget having a corner office or a seat in Congress. You don’t have to like it, John, but it shouldn’t surprise you.

Of course, in my humble, estrogen-soaked opinion, the great thing about Survivor is that, historically, a female has a better chance of winning. Somewhere along the way, the good ol’ boys club breaks down in this game and the alpha males end up eliminating each other. This season is proving no exception. The immunity challenge this week was very revealing about how differently the Yasur and Lopevi tribes operate. While the women collaborated and listened to one another, the men stood around waving their units and trying to shout above the bedlam. To make the competition even more humiliating for the guys, the editors opted to play that corny knucklehead theme music that prominently features a mouth harp and is typically reserved for shots of survivors trying to chase down a chicken.

The reward of a 24-hour visit from an island native was killer. It reminded me of a similar reward in Thailand, when the Chuay Gahn tribe got two Thai Red Beret Special Forces soldiers for a day. This reward was way better all around. For one thing, the soldiers were wearing uniforms and Dah was in a fetching loincloth. I really wonder if he wanted to do it with any of the women (or if they wanted to knock the boots with him). Secondly, Dah’s presence seemed to calm everyone down and get them refocused on their priorities as a team. I was touched to see Twila and Ami hugging when Dah departed. By contrast, the conflict between Ted and Ghandia came to a full boil when their guests were present. However, Yasur’s main problem was the presence of a royal bitch (Mia), while Chuay Gahn was facing Ghandia’s emotional fallout after Ted felt her up. It’s probably not fair to compare the two situations, as the scope of the problems within the two tribes was so different.

If Yasur has any remaining problems, they center around a very lopsided power struggle. Julie and Eliza are dead meat right now, so I’m curious to see if the whole “Everyone drop your buffs” promise of next week’s episode brings them into a safer configuration of tribemates. I find Eliza amusing to watch, with her Jenna Lewis tendencies to talk everyone’s ears off. On the flip side, Julie is this season’s Darrah: stunning yet silent. I predict that if she gets in with the right crowd, she’ll be part of the final four. And I’d really like to see her snog John. They’d be darling together. And everyone knows that mechanical bull operators make the best lovers.