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Survivor: The Amazon, Episode 4 MVPs: A Motivation Proclamationby Phil Kural -- 03/09/2003
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It seemed to me that there was a theme on Survivor this week. That theme was motivation. In fact, both of the MVPs that I have chosen this week were motivators in their own way. I feel that it is possible to be a motivator in two different ways. The first is to motivate by influence. That is the way our female MVP won this week. Our male MVP likes to motivate by speech and action. Each way is a good form of communication and basically guarantees that they will stay around for a good while. Let's take a look at who was able to pull ahead from the rest of the pack this week and become an MVP.
I must say that Tambaqui was on the rebound this week. I think the men finally realized that they are not as invincible as they may have once thought. It's nice to see that they are getting along now and there is no pent-up frustration or animosity. There was an honorable mention this week, and I am going to say that it was Matt. After Daniel was booted last week, it would have been very easy for Matt to realize he was next on the list. However, he pulled himself together and had a great week. Reeling in that peacock bass was just the icing on the cake. By providing food, especially as big a fish as he caught, he showed the others that he has value to the tribe and it may be smarter to get rid of someone else before him if they lose another immunity challenge. Another good thing about Matt is that his attitude didn't change. Just because his closest allies are now gone does not necessarily mean he is next. Look at Jan from last season. When all of Sook Jai was gone she thought she was next. However, she still outlasted Ted and Helen. Maybe Matt will have the same kind of luck. Even though he did a good job this week, Matt was not the MVP. That award goes to the motivator, and the motivator is Dave.
This guy is just full of team spirit. No wonder I picked him to win the game. I think Dave has been one of the most driving forces for this tribe so far. Even when he is down in the dumps he knows how to talk to his team and make them feel a little more outgoing. There has not been a challenge yet, especially this episode, where you cannot hear Dave cheering the team on and doing his part in the challenge. Heck, in the reward challenge this week he was so close to the fire that the hair on his legs was burning off! This guy is a force to be reckoned with. Not only is he a good motivator, but he will fight to the end. Dave is just one of those guys that will never give up no matter how hard the challenge is. That is exactly what this tribe needs. Although he may be young, I think Dave may be one of the driving forces on this tribe. Without him, morale would definitely be lower. I have to say that Dave is an MVP this week for all the motivation he brings to the tribe, not to mention his willingness to help the other and his remarkable work ethic.
Well, I guess we should take a look at the ladies. If anything else were to come to pass, in the words of JoAnna, we can always remember that the Jaburu tribe filled us with enough drama to fill the big heads of Heidi and Jenna. First, I have to say that I stick by my opinion that Jenna is the shallower of the two. Even though Heidi comes out with some random comments sometimes about how beautiful her and the rest of the "boob troop" are, Jenna's past actions of not talking to Christy for over six days still makes me a little bitter. Anyway, needless to say, neither of them is the MVP this week. Frankly, I don't think Jenna will ever be an MVP. She is so negative, and that is not what this game is about. Well, to an extent it is, but Jenna has taken the word evil to a new level. I really could not find an honorable mention on this tribe. I guess if I had to pick one person, it would be Christy because, like Deena said, she is on the rise. But she really didn't do anything all that spectacular this week for the honorable mention. There was an MVP this week. This woman was able to use her power of influence to eliminate a major competitor and still motivate the tribe that it was the right decision to make. Deena is our MVP for the Jaburu tribe, so let's take a look at why.
From the beginning of the episode when Deena joined the "boob troop" I knew it was all over for JoAnna and Jeanne. If you recall, I said last week that since Deena was now the appointed "leader," either the "boob troop" would resent her or they would welcome her into their alliance because she was a source of power. If that were to happen, JoAnna and Jeanne's plan of nominating her as the leader would backfire because they would be the first two to go. I was right, what can I say? JoAnna was first and Jeanne will follow soon. It was a good move on Deena's part to join the "boob troop." She can use the influence she has on them to get rid of the older women who may pose a threat to her standing. I like Deena. She is playing a smart game at this point. Not only is she a leader in the tribe, she is a motivator. At tribal council she said Christy was doing well and that made Christy happy. By doing that, I'm willing to bet she secured Christy's vote for JoAnna. I feel bad for Christy though, because I think she is easily influenced. Everyone doesn't realize it at this point, but Deena is running that tribe. However, she is doing a good job at it so nobody wants to say anything. She is good at motivating, delegating, and influencing. Deena will be around for awhile and just like I said last week, this is not the last time she will be an MVP.
So motivation was our theme this week. In different ways we had two different people who take a different approach to motivation and make it work for them. Personally, I like Deena's method a little more than I do Dave's. The reason for that is Deena has secured herself a place in her tribe for a very long time. Dave is still a little vulnerable if Matt were to be voted out next. Heck, anyone in the male tribe is vulnerable when I think about it. Either way, both did a good job this week. They kept their heads on straight and understood that a tribe with high morale will win every time. The men kept a positive attitude this week, mostly because of Dave, and walked away with a refrigerator and immunity. The women were not so lucky but I have a good feeling they will be on the rebound next week. As long as Deena and Dave can keep motivation though, they should not have to worry about their status at camp for a good while. Things change in this game at the blink of an eye though so keep a look out.
Phil Kural is a junior at Temple University, and can be reached at email@example.com with any MVP suggestions.
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