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Survivor: Pearl Islands – Advice for the Remaining Sevenby Jeffrey Clinard -- 11/26/2003
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Well, Rupert is gone and the power structure consists of three pairs (the Drakes, the Morgans, and the Outcasts) and a solo player (Jon). Furthermore, everybody should understand where the loyalties are in the game after the last vote. The Outcasts are clearly not Drakes, nor is Jon (and his position was exposed entirely due to Jeff Probst's error in reading the final vote for Rupert during tribal council). So with three distinct voting blocs and a wild card in the deck, the game is up for grabs and nobody should feel safe at tribal council unless they are wearing immunity (if, indeed, there is immunity this week; the previews seem to indicate that it will be stripped away from somebody who won it – it would seem that immunity would only be stripped if the player cheated or broke some other rule, such as physical violence).
What will be interesting is if one of the existing pairs is broken up. Players who are unallied (by choice or by circumstances) are inherently unpredictable since they no longer have any loyalty to anybody in the game. Unless Jon becomes the mutually agreeable target to a pair of the factions, the real key is actually selecting a target based on who they are allied with. The best move is to target the partner of somebody who will flounder without their ally instead of taking advantage of the power an unallied player has. So who should people be targeting? It's all part of the advice for the remaining seven.
Jon (Single Player). You seem to recognize the power of being unallied and are willing to jump from faction to faction to somewhat control which player is targeted and keep yourself off the block at the same time. Your problem right now is that the Morgans and the Drakes might team up to get rid of you next. Three of them have already voted against you and you sold out Rupert at the last tribal council. Ironically, some of the blame for your position lies with Jeff Probst, who should never had read the last vote (with eight people voting, and the split 4-2-1, the final vote was irrelevant as it could not have affected the outcome of the vote). If that last vote had been hidden, you could have claimed you voted for Darrah and have at least had some chance of getting away with your facade. You should also refrain from signing your vote with VT or otherwise have visual indication that you cast that particular vote. Unless you are trying to buy a jurist like Clay did in Thailand, there is no benefit, and one potentially fatal drawback. A smart player who wants to create some trouble for you will write down the name of one of your allies and the signature VT in the same place you always do. That can cause some problems between you and your allies. For now your best is to keep working with the Outcasts and the Morgans to try and eliminate Sandra or Christa next.
Burton (Outcast). You've made your move and blindsided Rupert, which elevates you to the role of food provider. However, you are in danger yourself. If I was a Morgan or a Drake, I'd target you, simply because you are a threat to win challenges, a leader / organizer, and an Outcast. Every eliminated player has stated they don't feel the Outcasts have right to be in the game, and, to be honest, I don't blame them. However, the real reason I'd eliminate you is that I believe Lillian is the person least likely to take full advantage of a single-player role. Strategically, you should take advantage of your temporary alliance with the Morgans to eliminate Sandra or Christa next.
Lillian (Outcast). First, you need to realize that in game situations, the normal rules do not apply, including scout pledges of being truthful. In fact, I've never held much regard for that in general, simply because sometimes a minor falsehood is better that speaking the truth (for example, no matter how ugly you think a newborn baby is, don't tell that to the proud parents). The thing you need to do is learn to fend for yourself in the game. At some point Burton is likely to be targeted for the same reasons Rupert was, and you'll need to develop a plan on what to do once he's gone. You're a better fit with the Drakes, but you probably have a better chance at winning the game against a Morgan or Jon. For now, let Burton keep the leadership role and direct the vote; he'll be the prime Outcast target should the Drakes and Morgans decide to get rid of you two.
Sandra (Drake). I have no idea what you were thinking during tribal council. First you answered one of Probst's loaded questions and named Jon as somebody who was getting a free ride at camp. You then proceeded to write down Jon's name at tribal council. If you knew Rupert was a goner, you could have written his name down; if you weren't sure, you should have written Darrah's name down. There was no downside to those votes; even if it had been a 4/4 split, you could have voted out Rupert at the tiebreaker and he'd never have known it was you (he'd be more likely to suspect Jon). Going forward, you and Christa should take a serious look at getting together with the Morgans in a deal to wipe out the Outcasts and Jon. I would suggest starting with Burton, though if he wins immunity you should target Jon. Lillian should not be considered at this point unless the Morgans want her targeted as a condition of the deal. You and Christa stand a better chance at getting Lillian on your side when she loses her ally.
Christa (Drake). Your position is similar to that of Sandra. You have her for an alliance partner, and you need to either bargain with the Outcasts or the Morgans to work to eliminate somebody other than yourself or Sandra. For various reasons, Burton is the best player to target, so approach the Morgans. They are certainly open to deals that will keep them from being targeted (as shown by the last vote), so you can offer up the deal to rid the tribe of the Outcasts and Jon.
Tijuana (Morgan). Here's the situation; both the Drakes and the Outcasts are going to want to bargain with you and Darrah to take out the others. You're going to have to decide which path to take in order to progress further in the game, and consider which person you'll prefer to stand against you in the finals (assuming you get that far). The one situation you'll want to avoid is leaving the Drakes and Lillian left in the game (along with yourself and Darrah). This is for the simple reason that she's probably a lost cause and won't bargain with you. So you might want to bargain with the Drakes to cut her out next.
Darrah (Morgan). Like Tijuana, you need to work out a plan to cut down the other factions, starting with the Outcasts. As long as Jon is somewhat associated with them, they are a power of three, and together the Drakes and Morgans can be a power of four. So it's time to plot with the traditional enemy and take down the Outcasts. If it comes to a stalemate on which to toss, you might get together and pick Jon as a mutually agreeable target. Nobody will miss him much anyway.
Rupert. Why did you walk the plank? You were too dangerous to be allowed to continue in the game. You proved you were a challenge winning machine, a good provider, and popular with most of the tribe members. So with the real possibility you could win a jury vote in a landslide, and your proven ability to win challenges to get there via immunity, the others had to get rid of you when they could. Keep those lessons in mind during Survivor: All Stars.
Jeffrey Clinard lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, with his cats, Lam and Princess. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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