Thursday, September 22, 2011

Blogging SURVIVOR - South Pacific: "Jesus and Elvis...they both inspired me"

Survivor - South Pacific is upon us. This year the contestants were divided in the traditional two tribe format, Upolu and Savaii. The twists this season were relatively minor. Coach and Ozzy returned for their third seasons to lead their respective tribes, and the tribe members that get voted out have a chance at returning to the game by going to Redemption Island and competing against the other evicted contestants.

Now let's get to know the contestants and break down their pros and cons based upon their official bios on the CBS website, as well as what we learned about them during the first episode. Here they are broken down by tribe, but otherwise in no particular order:

Upolu Tribe

Coach - The soccer coach/symphony conductor/pastor from California is back for his third season. Pros: He knows the game, he loves the game, and he's promising to be less self righteous this time around. Cons: He's been on the show multiple times and he has multiple nicknames, "coach" and "the dragon slayer." That's like playing poker with a guy who has first and last names that are the same as major cities. You want to get him away from the table as quickly as possible.

Albert - Albert is an ex Division I baseball player from south Florida, who is now a baseball/dating coach. Pros: He seems like he could be a big time physical force in the game. Cons: As a baseball/dating coach, he very well might be Alex Rodriguez's personal assistant, and A-Rod's last few years haven't been the best. Plus he already won the Bachlorette when he got engaged to Ali.

Brandon - Brandon is Russell Hantz's nephew, and since that is the only reason he's on the show, he will hereafter be referred to only as "Russell's nephew." Russell's nephew makes it seem as if he has a bit of a troubled past, but is now turning to God in attempt to do what is right...kind of like Sarah Palin. Pros: He seems to be a big enough douche deep down inside to make some big moves. Cons: He's Russell's nephew, and he's short...seriously, like Oompa Loompa short. Or should I say, "Upolu-Loompa" short.

Christine - A middle aged teacher from New York, Christine immediately announced to everyone that Coach and Ozzie were her targets upon their introduction to the game. Pros: She's smart to target the right people. Cons: She's dumb enough to say it out loud and immediately make enemies.

Edna - An Anesthesiologist from L.A., Edna seems like a pretty sweet and quiet girl. Pros: She immediately befriended coach when nobody else in the game wanted to reach out to him. That could be beneficial to her given his belief in loyalty when playing the game, that is, assuming he doesn't get voted off. Cons: She was the only person to initially reach out to coach, which made her a social outcast amongst her tribe mates.

Mikayla - Mikayla is a Lingerie Football League player in Tampa Bay. She's also yet to tell her tribe mates that she was on the February 2011 cover of Playboy. Pros: She's a Lingerie Football League Player and a Playboy cover girl (if guys are in control of the game). Cons: She's a Lingerie Football League Player and a Playboy cover girl (if girls are in control of the game).

Rick Rick is a rancher from Utah. I would consider him to be a cross between country music singer Kix Brooks and actor Jason Lee. Pros: Rick is an outdoors man in every sense of the word. He can hunt, fish, start fires, and build shelter. Cons: He wears a cowboy hat, and I can't see anyone who wears a cowboy hat ever winning survivor. Then again, the cowboy hat may not be a con after all.


Sophie - Sophie is a medical student from rural New York. She's part bookworm, part athlete. Pros: She's smart, she's strong, and she could fly under the radar. Cons: None to speak of at this point.

Stacie - A 44-year-old mortician from Texas. Pros: She lists her personal claim to fame as "none of my children have ever been in trouble with the law," so she's got that going for her. Cons: She's old, and she quoted a bible verse, that was quoted by another contestant from season 2 of Survivor in her CBS bio. That's kind of like you taking a picture, of someone else taking a picture, of themselves taking a picture in the mirror...okay, I'm confused now, or at least slightly drunk.

Savaii Tribe

Ozzy - Ozzy, the three time contestant from Venice, CA, returns to the game as the head of the Savaii Tribe. Pros: Ozzy has established himself as the ultimate camp player in past seasons. He can fish, he can build shelter, and he can climb trees like he's Petra Nemcova. Cons: He's almost too good and too likable. Nobody wants this guy even close to having a chance of making it to the end and going before the Jury.

Dawn - A 41-year-old English Professor at Brigham Young University. Cons: She's old, and she's from Utah. Pros: She believes in talking snakes. So if there's a talking snake on the island that knows the location of the hidden Immunity Idol, she's got a huge advantage over the rest of the contestants.

Elyse - Elyse is a L.A. dance team manager who also happened to be second runner up to Miss America. With Japanese, German and Native American blood in her background, she has quite a striking look. Pros: Guys should be drooling all over her. Cons: Girls, not so much. Plus I'm thinking that beauty queens don't do so well when stranded without necessities for 30 days...just look at what happened to John Salley on I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here! when he didn't have his tofu or makeup.

Jim - Jim owns two medicinal marijuana dispensaries in Denver and also considers himself to be a pro poker player. However, he's telling his tribe mates that he's a science teacher, which is a slightly less honorable occupation than the two he really does have, at least in my opinion (Take that Mr. Mackie!...if you're still alive, which you're probably not). Pros: He's a potential manipulator. Cons: This guy is totally full of himself and overestimating his own intelligence relative to the field. He's up against a Harvard Law student, a medical student, and a M.D., while he's got an MBA from the University of Michigan, which they pretty much give away for free just for attending their Hash Bash. In fact, those idiots are so stupid that they start it at noon instead of at 4:20 p.m.

Cochran - John, his actual first name, is a Harvard Law student and Survivor enthusiast/historian. Cochran wrote an award winnning paper in Law School about the Survivor jury system. He's asked to go by Cochran because some of the best player's in the game's history were known by their last names. Pros: A strong mental player, at least on paper. Cons: He has put a target on his back for his proclaimed intellectual skills, plus he is a liability in physical challenges and around camp. He's also socially awkward. I guessing that he probably told the Dean of his Law School how he wanted to ask out his daughter.

Keith - A water treatment technician from Minnesota, Keith is a laid back surfer who took a few years off to surf in Hawaii. Pros: Seems like an athletic, likable dude. Having worked one summer in a water treatment plant myself, I know he's definitely don't spend 90 degree days in Hazmat suits caked in shit without humity, and yes, I'm still bitter. Cons: Probably too laid back to have the killer instinct necessary to win the game...but if the holes they dig to poop in ever begin fill up, Keith's gonna be the man!  

Mark - An openly gay retired detective from New York (a gay dic...get it?), Mark goes by the nickname Papa Bear. In fact, with his beard, he's only a flannel shirt away from having the best nickname ever. Pros: He's rational and fatherly. Cons: Even though he claims to be a gym rat, his age is going to hurt him in physical challenges.

Semhar - Semhar is an attractive, spoken word poet from L.A. Pros: A likable free-spirited hippie. Cons: Hippies are not as good at living off the land as they would have you think. 

Whitney - A country singer from Nashville, TN. Pros: When Whitney listed her inspirations on her CBS bio as "Jesus and Elvis," this aspiring country music artist had no idea that she had just inadvertently came up with the title for her first gold record. Cons: She seems pretty well established as a singer, as she's already signed to a major record label, so I'm thinking that her Survivor experience is all about the free publicity.

Now that we've gotten to know the Survivor contestants, in my next post I'm going to play catch-up and give a recap and my analysis on the strategy and action that took place over the first two episodes.


  1. Strong first column. Several good lulz in this one!

  2. Girl, there were no "lulz" in this post. I had flow going on from start to finish.