Survivor Insights 109: South Pacific – Black, White or Gray (Episode 6)

1) Strength vs Loyalty -There are times strength is not enough to survive SURVIVOR. You also need to be loyal. Without loyalty, your strength and your efforts in challenges will be useless and without knowing it, your head is on the chopping board.

This was what happened with Mikayla. She was a victim. It was not her time to go, she’s still needed, but for the reason four of her tribemates (Coach, Brandon, Edna and Rick) only saw her as strength, they let her go. Edna, who regularly sat out in challenges, was only saved because Coach thought she would stick to the Core 6 no matter what.

Why it has to be this way?

Are they sure about it?

Here’s my take on this: By voting out Mikayla – Edna, Rick and Brandon officially become puppets. They are giving Coach the power to stay longer, to control how they think and feel and most of all, to win the million dollars.

It’s also tough to be Rick. It’s not easy to be a swing vote and weigh between strength and loyalty. I was convinced he would vote against Edna when Albert approached him. Albert knew Rick has the power to change the situation but as the editing goes, things swayed differently at the last minute. Of all the sharp arguments made during Tribal Council, Rick might have changed his mind the moment Coach started to discuss about honesty, loyalty and integrity.

Coach got it right. Being loyal is important and it’s his right to choose loyalty over strength. However, I expected Coach to know better than this loyalty crap. He would have thought of the group challenges ahead and it will cost them a lot should they lose.

Perhaps, Coach was “passively” convincing Rick to vote against Mikayla. He did not care what Albert has to say. He just wanted to Rick as one of his puppets. Then, Rick took the bait and that’s big relief for Coach.

You see, if only Rick voted against Edna, there’s an immediate shift of power from Coach & co. to him, Albert, Mikayla and Sophie.

2) All-or-Nothing for AlbertAlbert messed up the moment he shared with Coach about the exact location of the hidden immunity and just to redeem himself, saving Mikayla was his best but riskiest way out given she’s not a part of the Core 6. He could have played safe but he still chose to dig deeper just to save the hottest survivor of the season (This is what I can call the “real loyalty,” not just for strategy).

As the editing goes, his “loyalty can be faked” argument during Tribal Council is not too powerful enough to convince Rick, Coach or Brandon. He could have added Mikayla is the strength and she can also be loyal as Edna does.

However, there’s no turning back for him. He stood by his word and sat beside Mikayla. Unluckily, his plans did only work against him and all his efforts went south.

With Mikayla’s out of the loop and can be eliminated for good should she lose a duel against Christine, Albert’s chances to stay longer was slim. Can he still survive given the fact Coach clearly disliked what he has done? If yes, how? If no, then what will happen happens.

3) Free Agent – Ozzy was not learning how to play this game after being in two seasons he’s in. He’s surviving the hunger, the sweat and the boredom but he’s not playing a strategic game at all.

Big Mistake #1: He got very emotional after Elyse got eliminated.

Big Mistake #2: Just revealed to his tribe, not only with Keith, that he found the hidden idol.

Geez, it looks like the sole reason why Ozzy can last longer is because of Jim, Cochran and Dawn. His tribe needs his strength and loyalty especially when it’s The Merge. It’s also true he can win as many individual immunity challenges as he can but the moment his group no longer needs him, I’ll be not surprised if he got blindsided.

During the Immunity Challenge, Ozzy was not the reason why they won. It’s Jim’s perfect control to hit those targets.

4) Too Close – It was a close duel between Christine and Elyse. Elyse could have won if only she’s the first on board. Luck is luck and it still sided with Christine, who finished the game when it matters the most. This was a superb win for her and will be facing Mikayla next. I’m sure you know who my bet is!

Episode Rating: 10 of 10 stars – It pains me to see Mikayla go but everything about this episode is memorable!

Photos courtesy of: CBS

11 thoughts on “Survivor Insights 109: South Pacific – Black, White or Gray (Episode 6)

  1. I feel like this last vote is going to begin the collapse of Upolu. Either way the core alliance was split. It can easily become two teams now, unless Sophie and Albert can get over losing that tribal council. That has to be easier said then done. I agreed with the decision to get rid of Mikayla, if I’m Coach. Coach has her in his back pocket. As far as the rest of the tribe goes Edna needs to go for that very reason.

    Ozzy is unbelievable. I was shocked when he told everyone about the idol. His game may be very close to being over. Also I hope Keith is not being serious when he told Ozzy it could still be them.

    Pretty much agreed with everything you said.
    And Jim is now my favorite player. I hope he wins.


  2. Mike, I kinda don’t get you why getting rid of Mikayla is a good thing when you’re Coach. This is simply a bad call considering it’s still a Tribe vs Tribe competition. You said this is the start of Upolu’s demise, yes, this is probably true. We’ll see how a a tribe without Mikayla affects their performance and unity next week.

    I hate saying this is all because of Coach but he’s one of the reasons why the whole tribe might only suffer. Coach is only thinking about himself and what benefits his end game without thinking if his tribe loses in the next challenges, they are all going down.


  3. It’s a smart move for Coach because Edna is his puppet. The merge has to be right around the corner, most likely after the next challenge. So if they can win it then Coach is in better shape having Edna then Mikayla


  4. Yes, it’s only a good move for himself alone and not for the tribe. Coach could be wrong for choosing loyalty than numbers. What can he do with loyalty when Upolu will lose the next important challenges before the merge?

    If Mikayla stayed, they don’t only got the strength or the loyalty, they also have numbers.


  5. They can still pull out a win. Numbers don’t mean much if the tribe is divided. Mikayla could be blamed for losing the last challenge. And Coach doesn’t need to worry about the health of the tribe only himself. Being only down by one isn’t a big deal, especially if Christine is the one to come back.

    Theres two ways he could have played it and I don’t think either way is bad. But having Edna is better for him then having Mikayla


  6. Agree… Why do you think there were strong people as early boots, like JP Calderon? They didn’t click good enough with their tribemates and/or pissed them off too much (which was JP’s case, by slacking at camp with the other guys), and by that showed disloyalty…

    Besides, if you look at the challenge factor, based on this specific challenge, Mikayla screwed herself by not listening to Coach, and blowing the great lead they had, plus refusing to face it (which is one of the reasons I stopped liking her)… Yet another similarity to Steph, who got more fire on herself in HvV by not listening to JT and basically screwing the puzzle part of the 2nd HvV immunity challenge…
    The point is, if you’re not playing with the team, no matter how strong you are, you have a big target on your back… Pre-merge, for not clicking good with the others, and post-merge, for show loyalty more to yourself than to the others… In the challenge factor, teamwork weighs alot more than strength…

    Ozzy was a challenge demon in Cook-Islands, but Jason matched up with him in FvF, and in this season, Jason’s place seems to be taken by 2 people, Keith and Jim… So I don’t think Ozzy’s gonna go on a rampage this time…

    Sophie seemed to blow the agreement with Coach just as Albert did… The question is, which one of them is in more danger? My bet, whoever had a stronger broken agreement with Coach, which might be Albert…


    • “Mikayla screwed herself by not listening to Coach, and blowing the great lead they had, plus refusing to face it (which is one of the reasons I stopped liking her)… Yet another similarity to Steph, who got more fire on herself in HvV by not listening to JT and basically screwing the puzzle part of the 2nd HvV immunity challenge” I agree with you in this and I can also see the similarities. I kinda understand Mikayla why she chose not to follow Coach’s orders. She’s competitive and she doesn’t give up. “Why do you think there were strong people as early boots, like JP Calderon?” Strong people get eliminated because they are threats. They can easily dominate the Ind’L Immunity Challenges once they get the merge. It’s a little different story for JP, he was voted out primarily because of his bossy attitude. Even Parvati was annoyed by him.


  7. Early threat eliminations are another reason for strong early boots, but that’s only if there’s at least onew person that’s overly focused on strategy without considering challenge… Hunter from Marquesas, for example, was only eliminated because of Boston Rob…


    • Yeah, that’s right. I was shocked with that episode too. I was young then and couldn’t understand the cut-throat game made by Boston Rob. Silas from Survivor Africa too was in the same situation as this. He was the first survivor to be eliminated after a tribe switch. The Boran tribe considered him a huge physical threat and needed to go before Clarence. Jed of Thailand was also a victim of this strategy. His strength is so needed but his tribe let him go.


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