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Survivor: Exile Island Episode 11 MVP- My Cirie Amourby Betsy Wasser -- 05/04/2006
My Cirie amour got rid of Courtney the insane
My Cirie amour, making moves the rest don’t see
My Cirie amour, earned herself an MVP
How I hope she wins the game
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I may have given away who gets the Most Valuable Player award this week with that title and introduction, huh? But really, was there any doubt that Cirie would win the MVP award this week? The moves she made were truly impressive. Let’s take a look at what happened and how well she played.
For ages now, the prevailing sentiment in Gitanos camp has been to get rid of Terry as soon as possible. Terry’s strategy has been to win immunity, play the hidden idol if he has to, and to just hang on until maybe the wind changed. This week, the wind changed and Terry was able to spend time alone with Danielle and Courtney for the reward.
Terry, by the way, gets an honorable mention for a smart bit of play this episode. He and the women got to choose who went to Exile Island. Terry suggested that they send Aras, so he’d be weakened for the immunity challenge. That’s a move that benefits exactly one person: Terry. Aras is his biggest threat for individual immunity, so it’s in Terry’s interest that Aras have any disadvantage. Danielle and Courtney, on the other hand, should be hoping that anybody other than Terry wins immunity so that they can either get rid of him or force him to burn the hidden idol. For apparently using a Jedi mind trick to get Danielle and Courtney to agree to weaken Aras, Terry gets an honorable mention.
At the BBQ reward, Terry once again broached the subject of an alliance with Danielle and Courtney. This time, they were amenable to the idea. Courtney is in favor of a final four of her, Terry, Cirie, and Danielle. She must realize that as the most annoying person in the tribe, she’s an idea candidate to take to the final two. She also thinks that she could beat Terry in front of the jury. And who knows- maybe she could. Danielle also finds the idea appealing. The times are changing.
One thing is a constant, though: Courtney seemed to be everybody’s pick for the final two. This made Danielle nervous, which is why she told Terry that final three was not good enough for her. Terry offered a compromise- in the final immunity challenge, whoever came in first and second would go to the final two. They’d “fight it out like brothers and sisters.
Danielle was not thrilled about the idea, and rightly so. It’s a pretty safe guess, based on past history, that the final challenge will be endurance based. We all know how strong Terry is, so he’ll likely win. Courtney is quite athletic herself, and I think her background in yoga would serve her well in a challenge like that. She is probably has excellent balance, for example. That puts Danielle right back in third place.
If Danielle was worried about her position, she was surely even more worried when she talked to Courtney about it. Courtney clearly didn’t like the first and second place idea, but gave it a “whatever.” If I were in Danielle’s shoes, that wouldn’t leave me feeling confident. It would leave me feeling like Courtney was trying to appease me until she came up with a different plan.
And here’s where Cirie comes in. She was sitting nearby, heard the conversation, and surely saw Danielle’s uneasiness. She also knows that Courtney is everyone’s top pick to face in front of the jury, so to Cirie, that makes her the most dangerous person there. That’s smart, self-aware thinking on Cirie’s part. Really, if Cirie makes it to the final three, there’s really no way she can win. She is going to have to rely on somebody taking her with her. If Courtney is the automatic choice, Cirie is out of luck.
After Terry won immunity, Cirie’s plan was underway. Terry felt confident that they’d be voting out Aras. Shane wanted to vote out Danielle. Cirie told Danielle and Aras all of this and suggested the the two of them team up to vote out Courtney. When Danielle wavered on the plan, Cirie reminded her that if she didn’t vote for Courtney, the votes would go her way.
In a truly beautiful tribal council, Cirie’s complicated “triple play” plan actually worked. As David Bloomberg said in his recap, it may have been the most complex strategic move on Survivor to actually work. Not one, not two, but three people were misdirected in the voting. Better still, both Danielle and Aras knew they had targets on their backs, and now know that Cirie saved them. That ought to score her some loyalty.
From the beginning, Cirie has been playing Survivor hard. However, she hasn’t been obvious about it, like Terry with the tan lines on his neck from the immunity necklace, or Shane, who has been talking so loudly about the strength of his alliance. Now that she’s played her hand, she’s going to have a harder time being sneaky and not seeming like a threat. It will be harder for her to stay in the game, but based on this week, if anyone can pull it off, it’s Cirie.
Betsy Wasser is the Associate Editor of Reality News Online. She can be reached with any comments at BetsyWasser@Gmail.com.
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