Riding Coattails: Dubious Achievements


Normally I wait until after a season is finished to dole out my achievement awards to individual survivors. I’ve had a great time crafting commentary on the players’ physiques, mental health, intelligence, and phraseology as they pass through the maze of Survivor. However, the Oscars inspired me this weekend and reminded me how entirely subjective “best of” titles really are. That being said, I would have given Beyonce an award for wear so many kinds of eye shadow in one evening, but I must return back to Survivorland now. At this stage in the game, it seems an interesting exercise to take my newly-formed impressions and run with them. They will probably change before the next episode finishes on Thursday, but such is the fickle twist of the game (and my mercurial psyche).

Buffest MF on the Block: Tom
Holy cow, this man has some serious brute strength. Given his profession as a New York City firefighter, I figured Tom was no stranger to muscle work, but the man has exceeded my expectations after less than two hours of air time. He was primarily responsible for Koror’s victory at the reward challenge, which, I might add, looked like a real bitch. As a former synchronized swimmer, I know it’s damn tough to exert one’s muscles without breathing at the same time. Let’s hear it for Tom, Palau’s anaerobic champion!

Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde: Bobby Jon
One minute, B.J. appears to be a shrewd strategist, consulting with his tribe mates about the vote, the next, he’s wiping blood off his chest. What gives, Mr. Drinkard? You’ve clearly got a brain in your head and yet during the reward challenge, you were all but foaming at the mouth. Maybe I just don’t understand, being a person who is not the least bit competitive when it comes to physical matches. I mean, I don’t even try in thumb wars. Now, if a member of Koror had spelled “cervix” on a triple word score or gone Racko before you or something, I might be able to comprehend your rage a bit better.

The Chris Daugherty and Ryan Shoulders Memorial Challenge Goon: Katie
I cringed while witnessing Katie’s ham-fisted performance at the reward challenge. While I recognize that maneuvering a rope swing can’t be easy (I’ve never even tried), that doesn’t change the fact that Katie caused Koror to lose and return to their beach flintless, spearless, and pissed as hell.

Captain Fix-It: Ian
Even though Koror was devastated at the loss of their flint and a second opportunity to win it at the reward challenge, they did a bang-up job of recovering. Ian was the key player in roping their flint box off the ocean floor. The kid is upbeat, strong, and a little goofy, plus he has a MacGyver air about him.

The Bimboy: Jeff
I’m talking about the player, not the host here (although Probst seems a bit easy himself). It just wouldn’t be a proper season of Survivor without some stupid, slutty male in the cast. He doesn’t stand a chance. But at least he and Kim can do it once they’re both in Loser’s Lodge.

Best Comeback Since John Travolta: Angie
How about that reward challenge? Angie proved that her teammates’ assumptions about her lack of physical prowess were totally wrong. She kicked ass, took names, and showed everyone her tits. Now that’s some good TV.

Island Politician: James
“We’re Americans and we’re going to do democracy.” James’ adamant call for a fair system of organization had me in stitches. While the structure of Survivor makes a true democracy possible, America sure doesn’t (electoral college, anyone?). James’ wish for a democratic process is admirable, if not a bit misguided.

The Ramona Gray Memorial Rodent Hater: Janu
Yes, they’re annoying and they can freak a person out. But as someone who also lives in an island with lots of rats (Manhattan), I have a piece of advice for you: remember that you’re bigger and far more dangerous to them than they are to you.

Most Obvious Brow Lift: Stephenie
Wait, didn’t I see her on The Swan?

Most Blatant Challenge Spoiler: NBC
During the previews for episode two, Koror was shown attempting to retrieve their flint. At the reward challenge, flint was one of the items the tribes were playing for. If Koror had won, they wouldn’t have needed to fetch their sunken treasure. Ulong’s victory was well-deserved, but predictable. Thanks for spoiling the outcome, guys.

SirLinksalot: Survivor Palau