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Survivor: China, Ranking the Survivors – The Top 14by Asher Streets -- 10/02/2007
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I have to admit that I was surprised Ashley got the boot instead of Dave. I thought that Jaime and Sherea would team up with Ashley and oust the tyrant (especially since Dave was a wuss in the challenge). The top half of the pack doesn’t change much, but there has been some movement in the lower rungs. Each survivor’s previous ranking is listed in parentheses behind their current rank.
1. Todd (1): I think Todd may hold on to this spot for some time. Only Amanda has shown herself to have similar strategic prowess. My only caution is that others are aware he is a schemer. Jean-Robert pointed this out early, and at least Amanda and Leslie have spotted this, too. But I think they’ll view this as helpful for their game and stick with Todd.
Todd has done a great job at being relatable, so much so that Leslie trusted him enough to share vital information about the hidden immunity idol (despite their vastly different backgrounds). Todd is also flexible enough to make an alliance with Leslie, but be ready to boot her off if they lose and decide to pick off their physically weakest member. Todd’s physical qualities put him in a great spot, too. If Fei Long loses and they need to vote off the weak, Leslie, Jean-Robert, Courtney, and maybe Denise should be on the block before Todd. Once they hit the merge, they’ll need to deal with people like Frosti, Erik, James, and Aaron, who are all much stronger threats to win individual immunity. Todd’s sitting pretty.
2. Amanda (2): My initial take on Amanda seems to be accurate. She’s intelligent and strong. Amanda really gets the social game, perhaps better than the others. She did exactly what she needed to do in aligning with Todd and bringing Aaron in as the third. Now they just need to solidify their tribe loyalties so they’ll be protected if any shake-ups occur. Like Todd, Amanda’s physical status is perfect: not too weak and not too strong.
3. Aaron (3): Aaron is doing a great job as Fei Long’s tribal leader. He’s not going anywhere for a while (unless there are any reshuffles). Aaron was not too smart to publicly spat with Jean-Robert in front of Jaime, but I don’t think much will come of that information. My guess is that Aaron will not only lead well and do well in challenges, but become the team’s most successful fisherman. He’s fortunate that Todd and Amanda pulled them into their alliance. The three of them have no reason to turn on each other for a very long time. Aaron now needs to play his own strategic game and solidify a secondary alliances.
4. Denise (7): Yes, she’s really in this game, and yes, I think she deserves this spot. Denise seemed to do a good job in the challenges. Usually tribes will sit out their weaker members, and both Courtney and Leslie were chosen before Denise. We all know just how much the tribe thinks of Jean-Robert, so Denise is in a good position to make it deep into the game.
Despite the mullet, Denise seems very likeable. Barring any rolled ankles, I think Denise will become part of the core alliance. In fact, they need her. I believe Todmanda will approach her and state their desire to protect her. It’s hard to call, since we’ve seen so little of her, but from what I can tell, Denise should do well.
5. James (5): Whoa! James retains his position. He’s a lovable lug and will never be voted off before the merge. Any team would be stupid to off him. If he can get into Todmanda’s circle, he may do well. Leslie doesn’t seem like the best leader of an alliance, though she’s trying. James seems like a faithful guy, and anyone should want him to be part of their alliance, until the individual challenges start and the other major challenge threats are eliminated.
6. Jaime (8): Jaime’s visit to Fei Long shows they respect her. I think her time with them will give her bonds she can use later. She was smart to listen for tribal dysfunction and plan to use that information to boost morale at Zhan Hu. Unlike Sherea, Jaime was able to control her disdain for Dave a little, while making points about his poor leadership that her tribemates could relate to. I expect to see Jaime make the merge, at which point her stake will rise considerably.
7. Erik (4): Erik’s story is similar to Jaime’s. He’s laying low, but disgruntled with Dave. I’m not sure any players on Zhan Hu understand alliances, but if they did, it would seem that Jaime, Erik, and Sherea are in one. Their calm discussions of the vote seem to imply they are planning to vote together for some time. I believe Frosti will stick with the youth rather than the leadership duo, which means Erik should make the merge. From that point, Erik will need to play hard to stay.
8. Courtney (14): Hpmh. I thought Courtney would be more abrasive than she has been. Maybe she can keep her thoughts under wraps and save it for the confessional.
From the previews, we know that Todd and Courtney overhear Jean-Robert and James talking about voting for Courtney. I think this will be Jean-Rober’s instigation and only further lower his stock. Neither of them is controlling the vote. From his reaction, Todd seems to object, which may mean Courtney has been pulled into his alliance. Although she’s prickly, Courtney seems smart, so she should know she needs a voting bloc. It would be natural for her to team with Todd. With Zhan Hu’s winning streak, Jean-Robert’s laziness, and Leslie’s sickness, Courtney could very well last a while.
9. Frosti (6): Frosti tumbles a few spots because his team sucks. I believe nobody would dare vote him out before a merge, at which point he becomes a prime target. He’s Zhan Hu’s toughest physical competitor, and will leave as soon as he loses a challenge. Although James is much stronger, Frosti will not have had the advantage of being on the winningest tribe. Frosti has always voted with the majority, but it’s hard to tell if he knows how to play the game.
10. Sherea (9): Sherea has now replaced Ashley as Dave’s adversary. That’s not a smart position to fill. Yet, unlike Ashley, she’s voted with the majority and seems to have a loose alliance with Jaime and Erik. When Zhan Hu loses again, I think they’ll target Peih-Gee or Dave instead of Dave’s new foe. Also, I think Sherea is smart enough to avoid the fights that Ashley had with Dave.
11. Leslie (10): Leslie’s sickness will undoubtedly leave a lasting negative impression on her tribe. While I commend her efforts to align with Todd and James, her physical weakness may become a liability soon. On one hand, I see the logic in sharing information with somebody, but in previous seasons this was done with trusted allies (although we know nobody should have trusted Dreamz). Leslie’s decision to share information with Todd gave him more power and decreased her value. In fact, Todd may actively campaign against her just to have the idol clue to himself. It’s a toss-up between Jean-Robert and Leslie for Fei Long’s first eviction.
12. Jean-Robert (11): Dude, you are not playing even a tiny fraction as well as you think you are playing. Even with Courtney and Leslie on his tribe, Jean-Robert manages to sink to the bottom. He needs to hope that others value his performances at challenges, and that Fei Long keeps winning. His strategy to seem weak rather than exceed low expectations is ridiculous. First impressions are hard to erase. On top of that, he’s a known schemer, so very few people will trust him.
13. Peih-Gee (15): Surprisingly, Peih-Gee’s stock rose this week. Dave’s asinine behavior elevated her position, but not by much. Peih-Gee needs to befriend the young’uns fast, or she may be gone next.
14. Dave (12): Like Leslie and Jean-Robert, it’s a toss-up whether Dave or Peih-Gee will go home first. If Dave sucks at the next challenge again and still doesn’t allow his tribe to eat, mutiny will occur. It seems that in confessionals for next week, he’s annoyed by everyone, which is hard to hide. No matter what, he’s shark bait soon.
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out these other recent Survivor: China articles here on RealityNewsOnline:
Asher Streets is a food engineer and musician who lives in Madison, WI. He has a love for all things Italian, most especially gelato, wine, espresso, and cheese. Asher appreciates your opinions too and can be reached via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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