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Survivor: Pearl Islands – Advice for the Remaining Fiveby Jeffrey Clinard -- 12/11/2003
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Five Survivors remain, employing a wide range of strategy to get to where they are. Three will be jury members, one will lose, and one will win. Everybody left in the game should seriously be considering their own position, that of the others, and the mindset of the jury. The hardest cuts are made in this stage, where Survivors have to start betraying who that made promises to them, and in such a way they can still get their vote at the end. It's not always easy, but the best Survivors have always found ways to make it work for them. The runners-up have not.
Let's examine this week's reward challenge. Half of the remaining Survivors got to enjoy a reward together... leaving the other three back at the beach. This 50/50 split so late in the game is unique, but it was planned (by Burnett no doubt) as a method to separate the players into random groups for quite a bit of time in order to allow some plotting and scheming to go on (or at least focus on why certain people aren't talking much to each other). Jon figured it out and used it to his advantage, but every player should consider the side-effects of how challenges can impact the game.
Last week I ranked the remaining Survivors in terms of how I felt the jury would regard them. Obviously, some of the players feel differently, given that they expressed the opinion Lillian would win a jury vote based on her popularity. I find this difficult to believe, particularly in the historic context. Survivor juries have almost always voted for the strategic player rather than a popular person.
So let's look back on what each player has used as their strategy, with the pluses and minuses of each, and look to what they should be doing to stay in, and eventually win, the game. It's advice for the remaining five.
Jon. In the last series, I referred to Rob as the fabled scorpion, the one that stings the fox he talked into giving him passage over a river. You're following the same strategy, though you're quite a bit more over-the-top about it. I still think you have the best shot at winning the game, since you seem to be able to talk people into doing insane things (not the least of which is trusting you). If you can talk your way into the finals, you should easily be able to talk the jury into voting you the money. Since I think your position is strong, your best bet is to get rid of Darrah or Sandra next, and evaluate the jury mood. If I'm wrong and Lillian would win a jury vote based on personality, keep your promise to Burton and take him at the end (if you can). If I'm right, sell out Burton and take Lillian to the finals. Oh yes, one final thing – don't talk down to people as if they are idiots (even if they are). There is no percentage in annoying a future jury member at this stage of the game.
Burton. There was a blueprint for how the Outcasts could seize control of the game, back before I even knew which ones were going to enter the game. You've followed it, and you're in as good of a position as any Outcast can be. That's the biggest trouble you have. Simply put, anti-Outcast sentiment may run so high that you can't win except against fellow Outcast Lillian. That's why I can't understand why you are getting wishy-washy on her. Even if you do intend to sell her out (which you of all people shouldn't; if the jury has to vote an Outcast the winner, they would probably go with the strategic one), you should have just lied to her face and assured her it's all good, you and her at the end. In any case, proceed with the plan and cut out Darrah or Sandra next (whoever isn't wearing immunity). It's kind of a toss up at this point; Sandra I think has played the better game, but Darrah won immunity twice in a row (and was instrumental in winning the last reward challenge), so she's probably a bigger threat to win immunity just at the point where you want to vote her out.1 2 Next-->
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