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Survivor: Thailand - Why Robb Lostby David Bloomberg -- 10/24/2002
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Why did Robb (with two 'b's!) lose? Let me count the ways. Well, actually, I don't have to count them, because I already went through them all, by number, in my pre-Survivor article, What Thai Survivors Should Have Learned. So let's take a look back and see just why Robb lost.
First and foremost, we have the primary rule that you must scheme and plot. From the looks of things, Robb was indeed trying to do it. He just wasn't very good at it. How many times did people tell him they were going to vote for Shii Ann? And did he learn? No. We know that in the first vote, he claims "the majority" of people said they were voting for Shii Ann. They didn't. In the second vote, people (except Ken, who was honest) told him they were voting for Shii Ann. They didn't. So who does he attack? Ken, the one honest person! Way to make allies, dude!
The fact is that, as I said in the article, "From the very beginning, you have to start making alliances and cementing relationships." Robb did exactly the opposite by attacking people when he felt they weren't working hard enough. Strangely, he went from attacking Jed to sort of aligning with him (and Stephanie), but the fact is that Robb picked the wrong horse. He set himself up against Shii Ann, who has Jake's ear. We're still not entirely sure how the whole thing is shaking out, but we are certain that Robb wasn't a part of whatever went down.
So, did he scheme and plot too much? It doesn't look like it. So the second rule doesn't seem to apply.
But the third rule definitely does. We've already addressed it in part, but he definitely did not do a good job of pretending to be nice. He didn't even try. If a thought entered his mind (rare as the occasion was), he said it, not caring who he pissed off. According to Ken, he almost went in the very first week because he was so annoying. Luckily, Jed's insistence on being a loner made people want to get rid of him first. And even though Robb had an epiphany the day before the vote, becoming Mr. Sensitive, it just wasn't enough. Annoying Robb from the first 17 or so days outweighed Sensitive Robb.
Moving on, Robb definitely let his emotions control him, in the second manner listed - anger. We saw it in the way he reacted to the Episode 3 reward challenge (which was so bad as to be named a Reality TV Hall of Shame Moment). We saw it in the way he reacted to anybody who saw things differently than he did. It was obvious that logic did not dictate his plans, and that only left emotions for him. On the flip side, the rest of the tribe, who had the grand spiritual awakening thanks to Robb, did not let emotions interfere with their vote - he was gone.
Speaking of the rest of the tribe, did they do the right thing by voting off Robb now, especially after he practically won the reward challenge for them single-handedly? Well, yes. We are no longer at the point in the game where strength is a good thing. Presuming the merge is done at the traditional time, it will soon be every person for him/herself. You don't want somebody like Robb around to hog all the challenges. It's time to pick off the strong. Combine his physical strength with his all-too-strong personality, and it was definitely time for Robb to go. Plus, you need a cohesive group going into the merge, and Robb was obviously not a part of that group, given that almost all of them lied to him about their votes previously.
Robb was the type of person who would have been a better fit on The Real World than Survivor. Reality TV is made interesting by conflict, but that same conflict can also cause you to be voted off. Robb was lucky to last through the first Sook Jai vote, but eventually it was his turn. He did not play well with others, never made it into whatever inner circle exists on Sook Jai, and his turnaround was too little, too late. That is why Robb lost.
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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