Full Show Index
Advertise With Us
Write For Us
Survivor: Cook Islands – Why J.P. Lostby David Bloomberg -- 10/06/2006
View Printable version of this article
Sometimes the result of a Survivor vote is surprising – like last week, when Cecilia lost instead of Becky. Other times, the result is telegraphed throughout the episode. This week, it was all telegraphed! That makes it a bit easier to answer the question: Why did J.P. lose?
But just because the answer will be easier to arrive at doesn’t mean it’s automatically obvious. To make sure we cover all the bases, we will proceed through What Cook Island Survivors Should Have Learned as usual.
We know right off the bat that J.P. followed the first, rule and knew how to scheme and plot. Or was it just that he thought he did? Since he’s been booted, I think we have to go with the latter.
J.P. thought he had the men all under control. He told them they should stick together and the women would have to keep them. Guess not! He actually failed on two counts. First, the men didn’t stick together. Second, the women were going to target him anyway.
J.P.’s problem here was that he somehow missed the math involved. Four men. Five women. Survivor is a game about alliances, not just winning challenges. Yes, it’s good to keep strong players (which we’ll discuss in more detail later), but it’s not good to keep players who will end up sending you home! If Stephannie was sent packing this week, who would be next? The women would lose their numbers advantage and could have ended up getting picked off one by one.
Part of J.P.’s problem was that he was viewed as violating the second rule. I’m not sure he really did scheme and plot too much, but the women sure thought he was a player – and they didn’t want to get played.
We didn’t see J.P. doing excessive scheming, but the others viewed him as the king of the camp. The women knew the men had an alliance, so that certainly violated the portion of this rule that discusses open scheming. And J.P. was the apparent leader of the men, which goes against the part that notes, “if any alliances do get out in the open, do not let it be known that you are the decision-maker.” Considering he was being called the king, it’s pretty obvious he didn’t succeed there.
The third rule tells players to be flexible. J.P. never even tried to bring a woman into the alliance, as far as we saw. His goal was to stick with the men. Period. Obviously, that’s not a very flexible attitude. I hope he had some sort of backup plan, but we sure didn’t see it.
Fourth is to not let emotions control you. No problem here, so we’ll move on to the fifth rule, which says to pretend to be nice. Hmmm. J.P. didn’t seem to be a mean guy or a jerk, but I can’t say I would have been particularly happy to share a camp with him. He sat on his ass, ordering people around. That would have gotten real old, real quick with me. And I’m sure it did with those who were with him 24/7.
The sixth rule says not to be too much of a threat. J.P. represented a threat in two ways. First, by being one of the strong guys, he could have been a threat to the women, especially, later in the game. But that wasn’t the main issue, because that’s true of any of the guys.
Instead, J.P. was mostly a threat to the women because he was directing the men. As already mentioned, they realized that if they gave up their numbers advantage, they could potentially be picked off one by one, with J.P. leading the charge. That is where J.P.’s threat came in.
The seventh rule came into play for the second time this season, which is a bit odd because it sometimes can go a whole season and never be touched on. This is where the telegraphing of this week’s vote really came in. Early in the episode, the women were working on the shelter while the men sat around, watching TV and scratching their bellies. OK, the island equivalent of it, anyway. Then, when one of them brought up the possibility that the women might have been upset by this, J.P. dismissed it.
Bad move on both parts. Then, J.P. made matters even worse by sitting on his throne and telling his tribemates what to do! He was so comfortable with his position in the tribe that he apparently didn’t think he had to work as hard as everybody else.
So, were his tribemates (including everybody but Nate!) right to toss J.P. out on his ear? Generally at this point, tribe members should generally be voting out the weakest players, those who hinder them at challenges. As such, Raro should have been attempting to send home their weakest link, which Stephannie admitted to being. However, they had four big strapping men. Losing one really was not going to kill them.
In the meantime, J.P. was obviously causing tribal weakness in other ways. Some tribe members were annoyed at his behavior, others were afraid of crossing him. It’s just possible that without J.P. there, the team will gel better. We’ll have to wait and see about that.
But that really wasn’t the main reason he received almost everybody’s vote anyway. J.P. seemed to think that being physically strong was all that was necessary. In his mind, the four cavemen would stick around because the dainty women were too afraid to vote them off. Wrong! Survivor is often a game of numbers, and J.P. didn’t have them. The problem was, he acted like he did!
We didn’t see J.P. making alliances other than telling the other guys they should stick together. He had no backup plan that we knew of, and his main plan was essentially “be strong.” That just doesn’t cut it. There is a reason the first rule is scheming and plotting as opposed to swimming and running. What’s worse is that J.P. was tagged as somebody who did too much scheming while he truly wasn’t doing enough! That is why J.P. lost.
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out these other recent Survivor: Cook Islands articles here on RealityNewsOnline:
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline and can be reached at RNO@pobox.com.
Be sure to sign up for our e-mail update so you can stay informed about new articles on the site! And take a look at the rest of the site. You can find all of our recaps and other info on this show at the Survivor: Cook Islands page, and take a look at our The Amazing Race 8 page and our Apprentice: Martha Stewart page. You can even buy reality show stuff at our Reality TV Store!
View Printable version of this article