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Survivor: Pearl Islands –Who Will Go, and Who Will Win, in the Finale?by Betsy Wasser -- 12/13/2003
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Welcome to the special final mega-edition of “Who Will Go.” This week, I’ll be predicting who will make it to the final three, the final two, and who will be the ultimate Survivor. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover, so let’s get to it!
The final four players are Jon, Darrah, Sandra, and Lill. All four players should be thinking hard about who they want to take with them to the final three. Your ideal scenario for the final three is to have with you two people you can beat in front of a jury, and for both of them to choose you over the other one. Let’s look at who the best choices are for all four players.
Jon ought to be kicking himself hard for the arrogance he and Burton showed in the last episode. If Burton had chosen anyone else to share the reward with him, the women might never have had a chance to plot against him. He’d still be in the game, and Jon would be a lot safer. But too bad for Jonny Rotten, that’s not in the cards, so he’ll have to start scrambling to find a better position. Lill is his best choice to take to the jury. She has no allies there, so no one will automatically vote for her. She’s an Outcast, and there’s a lot of resentment in the jury about their being let back into the game. And finally, Jon can correctly point out that for most of the game, Lill has been a tagalong, not playing strategically. Jon should not write Lill’s name down. His other choice is between Sandra and Darrah. As far as jury votes go, it’s a wash—Sandra will get Rupert and Christa’s votes, and Darrah will get Ryan and Tijuana’s votes. They’ve played equally well in terms of strategy, so in the end, Jon’s best bet would be to take Sandra with him since Darrah is far more likely to win immunity. She is physically stronger than Sandra, and if balance plays into the final challenge—which it very well might—Darrah’s training as a cheerleader will give her an advantage. Jon’s best bet would be to vote out Darrah.
Lill finally woke up and realized that she was playing a game. It took her long enough, but she has at last done what she needed to do to save her own skin. Did anyone else laugh at Burton’s final words, when he said that he hoped Lill could live with herself after she betrayed their alliance? The very same alliance Burton had just betrayed by writing Lill’s name down? Now that Lill is in the game, she needs to realize that since she sold out her first alliance with Burton and Jon, it’s time to sell out her second alliance with Darrah and Sandra, because Jon is her best choice to take to the final two. On the jury, Rupert, Christa, and Tijuana all feel that Jon screwed them over when they got voted out. That’s three out of the four votes Lill would need to win. Between Sandra and Darrah, Lill also has an easy decision to make. Sandra said two tribal councils ago that she thinks everybody loves Lill and that it would be impossible to beat her. No way would Sandra take Lill to the final two. As a result, Lill should vote out Sandra.
I was absolutely disgusted with Sandra for planning to sabotage the camp. Survivor is a game, and by hiding the spear, nets, knives, and water pots when she thought she was going to lose, Sandra was no more mature than a little kid knocking over the Monopoly board after landing on Boardwalk with somebody else’s hotel on it. Luckily for her, all of those tools are still in place because her maneuvering this week bought her another three days. Which two players can give her still more time? Well, as much as she may hate him, Jon is a great choice. The only vote on the jury that would be guaranteed to be his would be Burton’s—just like Lill, Sandra should recognize that three of the jurors are there because of Jon. Between Lill and Darrah, Sandra’s best bet is against Lill. Darrah would have two votes from her old Morgan allies to match Sandra’s votes from the Drakes. Lill and Jon would be toss-ups, so Darrah would be tough for Sandra to beat. Lill, on the other hand, isn’t guaranteed any votes. She’s got the Outcast stigma, Burton feels like she betrayed him, and the Morgans may feel the same way. Sandra should vote out Darrah. The trouble is, Sandra doesn’t seem to realize that. When she said at Tribal Council that she didn’t think anyone could beat Lill in the finals, she wasn’t lying to snow Lill—she said the same thing when she cast her vote against Lill. Even though it’s not in her best interests, Sandra will vote out Lill.
That leaves us with Darrah. As far as I’m concerned, Darrah has an easy choice. Keep Jon, the scumball who betrayed so many jurors, and Lill, the sweet lady who has no idea how to play the game and who was already voted out once before. Vote out Sandra.
Like Jeff Probst, let me tally the votes. Jon votes against Darrah. Lill votes against Sandra. Sandra votes against Lill. Darrah votes against Sandra. The only way Sandra could survive would be to win immunity. The immunity challenge at this stage is usually about how well you know your fallen comrades. Near as I could tell, Sandra spent every minute with Rupert and Christa, so unless all of the questions are about the two of them, she’s not winning that immunity sword. The tribe has spoken, Sandra. It’s time for you to go.
The final three will be Jon, Lill, and Darrah. The final immunity challenge has always been a test of willpower. Twice in Survivor history, players have been so confident that they’d go to the final two that they deliberately lost the immunity challenge—Richard in the first season and Matthew in the most recent one. In both cases, that gamble paid off and the players survived to the final two. Is there a player this time who can take that risk? Jon is an excellent choice to take to the final two since so many jurors can’t stand him—can Jon afford to quit? I think not, because Lill is very loyal to Darrah. She was upset when Burton and Jon suggested they vote Darrah out—so upset, in fact, that she betrayed their alliance. Lill is likely to stick with Darrah. If Jon were to quit the challenge, he’d likely only make it to the final two if Darrah wins immunity. That’s a big risk to take. If Darrah quits, Lill will take her to the final two, but Jon won’t. If Lill quits, Jon will take her to the final two because she’ll be easier to beat, but Darrah would fare better against Jon. It would be a tough decision for Darrah to make, because to bring Jon, she’d have to break her alliance with Lill. But that’s the potential a loss of only one vote and if Darrah is up against Jon, she can afford to lose one vote. Nobody is going to deliberately quit the final immunity challenge.
Jon has the best chances of beating Lill, so his first choice would be to vote out Darrah. Lill, loyal soul that she is, would stick with Darrah, voting out Jon. Darrah might like Lill, but she’s more likely to beat Jon, so she’d vote out Lill. Obviously, this scenario can’t happen, because one of them will win immunity. For an endurance challenge, one that might involve balance, my money is on the most athletic of the three. Darrah will win immunity once again, guaranteeing a spot in the final two. She’ll vote out Lill and take Jon to the finals.
The members of the jury will be Ryan, Rupert, Tijuana, Christa, Burton, Sandra, and Lill. Darrah will get the votes of her former tribemates Ryan and Tijuana. Rupert, Christa, and Sandra will vote not so much for Darrah as against Jon. Burton will stick with his buddy Jon. And Lill will feel that both of them have betrayed her, but in the end, it won’t matter, because Darrah already has the four votes she needs to be the ultimate Survivor. The consensus of opinion will be that both of them played hard, but Darrah didn’t backstab quite so many people as Jon. The mortician from Mississippi will be a million dollars richer.
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Betsy can be reached with any comments at email@example.com.
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