Survivor Insights 136: Philippines – Left And Right Chaos (Episode 8)


THE BAD: Jeff Kent was voted-out and just like that, I’m down to my two first-impression bets!

I can think of two reasons for Kent’s elimination. First, for not blindsiding Penner in Episode 6. Second, for not winning the Immunity Challenge against Penner.

I know it sounds too negative to say “if only” but I have to. It’s tempting to use the term. “If only” Jeff Kent blindsided Penner, he could have stayed longer. I’m not sure if he’ll win but I’m confident he could be in the Final 4. When they won the Reward Challenge, I like the idea of having him, Lisa, Denise and Malcolm. They are the most deserving people for the title.

It’s expected for Penner to win puzzle challenges. Penner was a puzzle-god and he played like he visualized it right before he even started putting the pieces. When Jeff Kent lost the challenge, it wasn’t a big surprise rather it’s a disappointment to watch. He almost won the challenge and “if only” he was a bit faster than Penner by ten seconds, being in the Final 4 was even closer.

Oh there’s a third one. Kent has no Plan C.

He’s too busy gunning for the returnees to a point where he must have forgotten he’s still playing a game with six other people.

And there’s also a fourth. I know blaming is unnecessary, especially in Survivor.

Blaming is useless, it’s for the losers, right? Though if I’m going to put a blame on someone, that would be Penner. Penner voted against Abi which means it’s his way of saying “It’s time for you to go Mr. Kent. Take this as my sweet revenge.”

Strategy-wise, what Penner did was worth praising. He took the opportunity to his advantage and he knew it was his perfect timing to vote someone out who dislike him.

WHO STANDS OUT: In real life, I hate backstabbers! In Survivor, they’re making the show more interesting. Unfortunately for Lisa, the label fits her. She betrayed Malcolm and she betrayed Denise too. It seems to me Lisa’s act wasn’t intentional. She simply wanted to believe she can trust Pete. The biggest problem here was, Pete wasn’t loyal to Lisa. I don’t know what in his mind why  he trusted Malcolm who he just met.

Lisa played aggressively though she overdid the strategy.

What’s her Plan B now? That’s the question I have in mind after watching the preview. Now that the dirty secret was out and Lisa realized she wasn’t part of the Axis of Evil alliance, where will she go? Will Malcolm and Denise forgive her? Or, she will only be eliminated for no one trust her anymore?

A lot of possibilities can happen to Lisa. She’s still a likeable character yet, for the bad choices she made this episode, I’m not sure if she has the right tools to fix the situation.

THE GOOD: Pete ranks second if these remaining castaways are evaluated based on strategy (My #1 is Penner). Everything was going on his terms. Last week, Jeff found a friend in him when they were planning to flush out Penner’s idol. It happened.

Pete was successful in convincing Jeff to cut RC first before Michael.

The votes between Pete and Penner were so close. Somehow, Pete was lucky and must be thankful for Penner. His vote was the reason why Pete wasn’t having a romantic date with RC in Ponderosa.

Another important thing to note, Pete controls Abi-Maria even if she has the idol. The two were married in the game. There were in a power position and I’m quite sure Pete won’t let go of her. Pete must know he cant win the title against anyone except for Abi.

I’m wondering why there were no talks around the camp to separate them.

Malcolm did a brave decision. It seems he’s tired of all the “craziness” in Tribal Council and for them to shut up, he showed them his idol – it’s his way of saying “I got it, are you satisfied?”

He felt confident he wasn’t going anywhere so it’s a smart decision not to play it. After the vote reading, it looked like Malcolm felt angry. Frustrated. Pissed. His plan was shattered. He may have the idea that Penner didn’t follow the plan. However, blaming him won’t solve his problem. Malcolm already knew he was a threat. Even his idol and his alliance with Denise and Carter aren’t enough to protect him. He needs to win back-to-back-to-back Immunity Challenges to have these extra layers of protection.

EPISODE RATING: 10 of 10 stars! The last eight minutes of the episode was the craziest. Without a doubt, that’s the most chaotic Tribal Council next to Heroes vs. Villains Double Elimination in Episode 6.

Photos courtesy of: CBS

8 thoughts on “Survivor Insights 136: Philippines – Left And Right Chaos (Episode 8)

  1. I don’t think Kents elimination should be blamed on not blindsiding Penner. He had this week set up but for some reason Skupin decided to go against it. Penner through a vote on Abi which is kind of dumb. Either just write Kents name down or vote with him. Why Skupin would vote with Tandang is beyond me. They’re gunning for him and he votes with them, makes no sense. Kent played a great game. He was going after returning players, but that’s not what did him in. It was poor and weird gameplay by Skupin who is officially the first returnee to be the worshipping follower of a first time player in Lisa. How sad is that?

    Abi is very stupid for showing her idol. Well done by Penner to sit back and let everyone (I mean just about everyone) implode around him.

    I don’t think Abi is controllable. Pete has her now but that can change. Another thing Pete seems to sometimes over think himself. He’s a good strategist, but doesn’t seem to be to great with human interaction. Like when Malcolm told him, he didn’t have the idol.

    It sucked for me to see Kent get voted out. He was a great player and was entertaining.

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    • @MikeCif I may not be a baseball fan but after this episode, I was in complete denial that Jeff Kent was voted-out. It looked like it was going to be Pete.

      Upon seeing the votes, I realized it was Penner who flipped. He chose to vote against Abi-Maria to show he no longer wanted Kent to stay.

      I could see regrets in Kent during the exit confessional. I also saw his two-part Ponderosa videos. He knew he wasted his chances and “if only” he played without hesitation, he could have stayed longer.

      As for Abi-Maria, it’s quite funny watching her talk in Tribal Council without thinking. I like her, she’s my bet but her ability to not control herself is such a disappointment. She’s playing this game with the wrong emotions and she easily gets paranoid, which seems annoying to hear. Even Pete was losing his patience of her. But you know what, Pete will remain loyal to her. Pete may win the title should Abi-Maria is beside him. That’s how I see it and if no one attempts to separate them before the Final 6, the pair makes the finals.

      I want Abi-Maria to backstab Pete but I don’t know if it will happen.

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  2. “When Jeff Kent lost the challenge against him, I wasn’t surprised at all… I was rather shocked not to see Jeff Kent win.”

    I don’t understand what you mean. They seem to be contradictory statements.

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    • Thanks for commenting @InTheMitad I really appreciate it!

      Sorry to confuse you with what I wrote. What I simply mean is I kinda expected that Penner will win the Immunity Challenge right before it started. I even predicted it a week before this episode aired.

      Penner is a complete underdog and he has this urge to prove to himself that he deserves to stay than anyone else.

      I was shocked when Kent lost the challenge. He already started the puzzle seconds before Penner. His only an inch away to winning.

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  3. I have no major quibbles with your recap. Abi looks poised to make it to the end as the “safe” person nobody would vote for in the final. Malcolm showing and then NOT playing the idol was classic. Kind of surprised nervous Abi didn’t fling hers at Jeff like an Aussie flipping a boomerang at a miscreant kangaroo though. Jeff Kent. Classless low life. I kinda liked the guy right up until his parting statement. Cry me a river you rich pampered bastard. Tell me again how rough it is to ‘only’ make $600,000 take home pay for six weeks work because the society you live in requires taxes to, among many other things, build roads and ball parks for you to make your other taxable millions. Pampered right-wing twit. I really don’t begrudge the pro players the millions of dollars they get paid. I do have a great disdain for people making more money than the President who are somehow inconvenienced in a worse way than most of the middle class people when it comes to giving back to the society that granted them access to such wealth in the first place. As to the former child actress blatantly breaking her trust with Malcolm over the secrecy of the idol? I was not pleased. Thought better of her. Caused me to do a little background search on her since her days on TV. First off, she is 49, which makes her six years younger than me. The show was aimed at preteen/teen girls as I recall. I remember the characters but there is no single episode that stands out in my mind. If you pay attention to her chatting in the show, you get the impression that she has been the subject of some form of hero worship every since then because I felt a genuine sense of humanity in her statement about “these people here like me and they don’t even know about my fabulous past”, which obviously reflects that she has to be distrustful of everyone because she can never be sure they are fond of her, or just fond of the fame and created image from TV. Recently divorced, she was reportedly not only a preacher’s wife, but also a preacher in her own regard. This make her betrayal of her confidence with Malcolm even more acidic to me. I will try to overlook my disgust in lieu of the first rule of Survivor, which is there are no rules in Survivor, but still.

    Now if I had a few minutes to sit down and chat Lisa up about her life troubles as well as her viewpoint on imaginary Jeebus (and the people who love him), I would offer the following:

    “You seem like a truly radiant and genuinely splendid individual. You are obviously aware that people will pretend to like you for no other reason than the fact they think you represent something that they imagine to be “good” even when they honestly don’t know jack squat about you in real life. I see from your conversations shown on air that you are aware of this and it isn’t something you desire (who really would?). I would caution that you approach religious folks with the same skepticism. When you are representing for imaginary Jeebus, people will love you without even the added benefit of your past fame. Imaginary Jeebus supporters love NOTHING MORE than supporting their fellow imaginary Jeebus supporters. It is one giant clusterfluck of giant imaginary Jeebus love-bombing. Irrespective of the presence or absence of the aforementioned imaginary Jeebus, what is not imaginary is the cultural power of the aforementioned phenomena. At the end of the day, I can promise you that Jeebus is just as imaginary as the promises of lifelong marriage made by your former imaginary Jeebus loving spouse and the foundations for the actual existence of imaginary Jeebus are EVERY BIT as reliable as your word to Malcolm on that beach the day you discussed the idol. Best wishes on your future and while my praying for a better tomorrow might play better with the crowd in Peoria, I will end this with something much more substantial. A promise to keep you in my thoughts and provide any guidance, assistance or comfort to you in these troubling times. I live here, there and everywhere on the internet. Ask around and somebody will point you to my end of the street. Best wishes.

    Enjoy.

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    • Thanks for the lengthy comment @TimFuller. I enjoyed reading it and I understand why you seem to dislike Jeff Kent. His parting statement was only his personal views and I respect it whether I agree or disagree.

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  4. Hi Dean,

    I do agree with you. The biggest downfall of Lisa this episode was that she was trying to play too strong and with the wrong people. First off, she did not have a tight alliance with the Tandang members with whom she was needing to make this big move. Abi said it outright during tribal – Malcolm was more a part of that Tandang alliance than she ever was. In fact, Pete was questioning her plan – he said, “I don’t know what Lisa’s trying to pull here.” I think it was a combination of Pete trusting Malcolm fully and him not trusting Lisa enough why this supposed big move did not transpire. As many castaways have said before, it is a combination of different things to make your plan work on Survivor.

    But kudos to malcolm, it was a brave move on his part. It might be a little too risky, but revealing the idol has to be done. Or else, he’d be like penner whose a dead man walking, as Jeff said, knowing that he’s got no safety net, had he played the idol. With some people’s votes still up in the air, and with a tight alliance with Denise, I do think they can still pull something together!

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  5. @Abby Pete’s strategic game this episode has two sides. It’s bad for the reason that she trusted Malcolm more than with Lisa. Those people who are rooting for Malcolm must have been thankful for Pete. Pete saved Malcolm to some extent, right?

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