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Survivor: Guatemala - Who Will Go in Episode 6?by Wesley Rice -- 10/20/2005
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I’ve been moping around the Internet lately to see if any other prognosticators are faring as poorly as I am this Survivor season. And I’m fiendishly delighted to say, “Oh, yes they are!” You see, it’s not just me. Even those who reach for the despicable Crutch of Spoileration have fallen flat on their collective faces trying to guess the next Survivors to be voted off their tribes. Billions of Survivor predictors around the world are being fooled this season by the machinations of the Mayan god Burnettzalcoatl and his devious crew of editors.
So, as I sit here in front of my computer, listening to the theme to Airwolf on my Media Player and mulling over the myriad possibilities for the next episode, I’ve decided that the only way to truly guess at the booted Survivors this year is to explore new avenues of prognostication.
Last week I pitted myself against Steve the Howler Monkey. After all, the idea that a monkey could outguess somebody is so delightfully cliché. Unfortunately that idea crashed and burned like the plane from Lost. In a howling fit of cluelessness, Steve chose Big Tom from Survivor: Africa and Survivor: All-Stars as the next to be voted off the tribe.
Not to be deterred, I have arranged for a cliché that’s just as delightful (and a whole lot cuter). My eight-month-old daughter will be predicting the booted Survivors for you this week. Now, I would like to preface this by saying that although she has been present for all of the Survivor episodes this season, she’s spent the majority of those episodes chewing on a wooden spoon. So please cut her a little slack if she messes up.
Immediately I’ve encountered some problems with my child choosing the next booted Survivors, namely the fact that she can’t talk. Fortunately, I have a solution. I’ve printed tiny headshots of the remaining Survivors and scattered them on the floor. My daughter will now crawl towards the scattered headshots and use the faithful hand-to-mouth method of prediction. The first Survivor head to come into contact with my daughter’s tongue will be the next one booted from his or her tribe.
We’ll start with the Nakum tribe. And here we go! She’s moving determinedly forward, and – what’s this? Oooo, paper (she loves paper). There she goes, reaching out and sweeping up three heads in one hand. What now? Will she drop one? She swings them around for a moment and then... a head touches her tongue! I quickly grab it and it turns out to be Judd! Well done, little one.
Now it’s time for Yaxha. I’ve gathered up the remainders of Nakum and sprinkled the Yaxha heads to the floor. Once again I release the crawling wonder at the other end of the room. It seems that a couple of the pictures have drifted apart from the others during the sprinkling, and she immediately heads toward them. They are Brian and Bobby Jon. She stops for a moment, considering her choice (oooh, this is exciting). She reaches out, grabs Bobby Jon, aaaand... he touches her tongue!
There they are, my friends. Judd from Yaxha and Bobby Jon from Nakum (with a close second to Brian). My baby’s predictions for this week.
Now, I could stop right there, but let’s be reasonable. As highly possible as those two are (Judd the sourpuss turncoat and Bobby Jon the clueless turncoat), I still need to make a prediction of my own based on actual observations and strategic thinking. Promos for this week’s Survivor indicate that there will be two tribal councils and therefore two boots. Let’s begin with Yaxha.
I had originally planned on writing an article this week detailing the dynamics of challenge-throwing. When the tribes shuffled and Old Nakum (Blake, Brandon, Bobby Jon, and Danni) suddenly outnumbered Old Yaxha (Gary, Amy, and Brian) on the new Yaxha tribe, it made perfect sense for Old Nakum to throw the immunity challenge. They had superior numbers to Old Yaxha, so Tribal Council shouldn’t have mattered to them. And by throwing all of the challenges, they could effectively vote off the minority and enter the merge with a numerical advantage (even after Judd switched loyalties) by pulling Margaret and Cindy back into their alliance.
Clearly, this solid strategy escaped Danni and Bobby Jon (not to mention Judd), who have now lowered their overall chances immensely. Old Yaxha now outnumbers Old Nakum seven to six overall. And they currently hold the voting advantage in each tribe due to switched loyalties. Even if Danni and Bobby Jon switched back now, they’d still force an unpleasant tie. Thus, any article on challenge-throwing has been rendered moot.
Unfortunately, the one member of Yaxha to suffer from this mess is the only former Nakum who was smart enough to realize the aforementioned strategy, Brandon. By sticking to his word and voting with Blake (and with what should have been a four to three majority), he has now singled himself out as the new minority on his tribe. I feel for him, because he was playing the game correctly. But due to the mistakes of his tribemates, Brandon will be the next Yaxha member to be kicked off the tribe.
In the Nakum tribe, Margaret is facing a similar situation. Two weeks ago, she clearly laid out the strategy for Judd. He needed to at the very least force a tie with the other alliance. If he turned, it would only be a matter of time before Old Yaxha (Stephenie, Rafe, Lydia, and Jamie) chewed him up and spit him out. Judd simply stared at her and thought for a moment, “Duh... me hate Brooke...”
Now Margaret is the focus of Judd’s unfounded rage and the target of convenience for his pseudo-alliance with Old Yaxha. Cindy is waiting nervously in the wings, trying to win immunity challenges and hoping to quickly make some new alliances. But Margaret will be the next Survivor sent home by Nakum.
Of course, based on the previews, there are many more factors to consider. Yaxha could kick off Amy instead of Brandon after she gets crushed by a boulder and becomes a liability. The testosterone-induced rage of Jamie and Bobby Jon could result in some punches being thrown and the first dual-ejection for violating Survivor’s “no punching” rule. But really, it’s anybody’s best guess anymore. So I’ll just go with what I know. Margaret and Brandon are in danger of being sent home.
Will my predictions finally come true, or will my daughter “outwit” me on this one? Should I make the baby predictions a weekly feature? Is anybody still reading this, or have you all given up on my prognosticating skills? Drop me a line at the email below if you have any answers, and tune in to this Thursday’s Survivor for the truth.
Wesley is a writer and English teacher from Tulsa, OK. He promises that no babies were harmed in the writing of this article and can be reached with questions, comments, or snide remarks at Musnud@gmail.com.
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