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Survivor: The Amazon - Advice for the Remaining 10by Jeffrey Clinard -- 03/20/2003
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Both tribes are down to five members each, but the men now outnumber the women 6-4. Still, gender-based alliances seem to have collapsed, with new ones appearing to take their place. This is where the Survivor Advisor returns to provide advice on how the remaining players should be playing the game.
Next week, it's likely to be merge time, or at least two tribes living together (how do we know this? By the preview; a naked Jenna is asking Heidi if she wants to take off her pants. This conversation is unlikely unless the tribes get together). With that, the game takes on new group dynamics, and new perspectives on how to play the game. Interestingly, each tribe contains an apparent four solid and one outcast (the outcasts being Heidi and Alex).
Tribal politics are extremely complicated right now. The new Jaburu formed an unlikely alliance of Rob, Deena, Jenna, and Matthew, and has left Alex out in the cold. The new Tambaqui has the men tight, and have pulled Christy in, but Heidi is likely to return to her old tribe (and best Amazon buddy Jenna) once the merge takes place. So if they merge, it might come down to a 5-5 tie vote. Somebody is going to have to try and figure out a way to steal a vote or sucker the other tribe into splitting their votes. Otherwise we might have a purple rock tiebreaker... dangerous for anybody who isn't wearing immunity.
Rob. I think I underestimated you. Underneath the goofball antics you've got a calculating mind. You managed to put together a coalition of people who felt like outcasts for various reasons (Matt and Deena), and somehow got Jenna to go along with the scheme to toss out her longtime political ally Shawna. You also looked ahead at what you could do to carry this alliance far into the game, particularly pretending to rejoin the male alliance while plotting their demise. I don't know if you can fool them, but it's essential that you get somebody from Tambaqui removed in the next episode. Your target will probably be Roger, as you've had problems with him in the past.
Alex. You've had the rug jerked out from underneath you this episode. The others in new Jaburu turned on Shawna, leaving you without your flirt partner and outside the coalition that kicked her out of the game. If there is no merge, you're probably the next target if Jaburu goes back to tribal council. If there is a merge, you must immediately re-align with the Tambaqui tribe and warn them about the new Jaburu alliance. You still might be the target, but if you get immunity or political protection, you can perhaps avoid the vote.
Deena. Well done. You took yourself off the chopping block by making an unlikely alliance with Rob. I rather suspect you were responsible for pulling Jenna into the alliance, while Rob brought Matthew in. If you merge, you need to try and get Christy back into the fold. You are probably the only one that can pull that off, if indeed anybody can; she and Jenna don't generally talk, and the men don't know her. Once merged, try to take out one of the members of Tambaqui.
Jenna. I'm not sure why you decided to vote out your long-time ally Shawna. I rather suspect Deena did some talking to you and pointed out that Shawna was now a wild-card given her Alex thing, and offered up Rob's deal. No matter what your reasons, if you merge, it's time to bring Heidi back into your camp and attempt to toss a Tambaqui member.
Matthew. Your position has gone from outsider to alliance member, all in a single episode. Providing fish for the tribe may have been one of the deciding factors in Rob's decision to form a new alliance. It really doesn't matter if he likes you or not; the game is about political power. Breaking up the couple (Shawna and Alex) was a wise move, and your vote was needed in order to do it. That move kept you in the game and put you in an alliance. You need to stick with the alliance and work to toss out members of new Tambaqui at the merge.
Dave. You're trying to play the game too cleanly. Apparently, you don't understand why you shouldn't have told Christy that Jeanne was the one to go because she'd have been next on old Jaburu to go (the truth as you saw it). Here's why that would have been a mistake. That approach does nothing to win over and retain Christy as a political ally. Roger handled the situation correctly, making her feel that she was valued by the tribe. The cold truth would have caused her to feel like an outsider, and willing to jump ship at the merge. You are not considering the human element of the game. While the outcome in the same in either case, there is a vast difference between saying "We wanted Jeanne out" and "We wanted to keep Christy in." One of them excludes Christy; the other includes her.
Roger. As noted above, you provided the best possible reason to Christy as to why Jeanne was cut instead of her. This is important, since Christy should be a major asset to your political position. You need her for your alliance, and, long-term, her vote on any future jury. Your next move is to try to oust a member of Jaburu if you merge. It hardly matters which, but I'd suggest the strongest female remaining, Deena. If you don't merge and go back to tribal council, cut Heidi from the tribe. On a final note, if you merge, it's important for you to try to win immunity. You're the probably target of the Jaburu alliance.
Butch. You continue to play the game well. You secured Christy's position in the Tambaqui alliance with your post-reward challenge speech. You might also have secured Christy's vote on any jury with the way you took the time to bond with her. Like the rest of Tambaqui, you need to either cut Heidi if Tambaqui goes back to tribal council, or a member of the Jaburu alliance if you merge.
Heidi. I fully expect you to return to your old tribe once the merge hits. You'll have Jenna and her new Jaburu alliance to jump back into, and that will provide some political protection. You are the odd person out of this tribe. If you don't merge, then you're probably a goner at tribal council. If you do merge, you'll be able to escape the precarious position you're in right now.
Christy. The way I see it, you control the single most important vote if you merge. The new Tambaqui tribe has shown you every consideration and made you feel valued. Stick with them; they are your allies. The next vote will be critical to the outcome of the game. It's important for you to be on the right side of it. You can stay in the game this way until mid-end game, where you might want to shift strategy.
Jeffrey Clinard lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, with his kittens, Lam and Princess. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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