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Survivor: Cook Islands – Why Jenny Lostby David Bloomberg -- 11/22/2006
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Jenny was the victim of the surprise message in a bottle. But while she said in our interview that Mark Burnett outwitted her, that’s not really why she was voted out. What were the reasons? Why did Jenny lose?
“Beware of messages in bottles” is not one of the rules to be found in What Cook Island Survivors Should Have Learned. However, there are other things that Jenny could have known about and should have prepared for. Let’s see what they were.
The first rule, of course, tells players how they need to scheme and plot. Jenny understood the basics of alliances and how important they are, but she didn’t seem to necessarily think ahead about how alliances can shift and how she might find herself suddenly on the outside.
Jenny was comfortable in her alliance until the Mutiny. At that point, everything changed and Jenny needed to change with it. She should have immediately realized that all four original Raro were now together in her tribe. This never bodes well for outsiders. Furthermore, everybody knew about the Candice/Adam love interest. This also did not bode well.
But Jenny still went along with the plans that had been determined by the likes of Adam. When the tribe was at eight – four original Raro/four not – she helped boot Brad. It was really at that point that she should have seen the possibility of an original Raro foursome taking control. And that was also the point at which she could have perhaps done something about it by insisting, for instance, that they vote out Jonathan instead.
The problem, I think, is that Brad and Jenny didn’t really get along. So Jenny was likely all too happy to boot Brad. It wasn’t until later that this became a problem.
Once Brad was gone, the original Raros were in complete control. Early in the most recent episode, Jenny talked about how important it was to keep their five-person alliance (herself, Rebecca, Adam, Nate, Parvati) in the game. And she was right! But by Tribal Council time, the others had turned on Rebecca, and Jenny couldn’t do anything about it. In fact, I’m not sure Jenny tried to do anything about it, other than talking to Adam, who was absolutely the wrong person with whom to discuss it.
Indeed, that was when her downfall was sealed. Jenny specifically talked to Adam about voting out Candice. Hello? She didn’t believe him when he said he would, but simply by talking to him about it and indicating that she wanted him to boot her, she painted a big red target on herself. Adam now knew where she stood.
Part of this is creeping into the territory of the second rule, which talks about keeping your scheming secret, but I’m talking about it here because my point is that Jenny needed to be plotting against Adam, not with him. She needed to have realized that with Rebecca gone, she could well be the next target. She should have conspired with Nate and Rebecca to try to bring Parvati or Jonathan over to their side. Jonathan was the most likely, due to his nature, I think.
Since we already started discussing the second rule, let’s move on to that now. I don’t know that we can specifically say Jenny schemed and plotted too much, but I think it’s safe to say there was something about her that made people think she was untrustworthy. Part of it was the impression she gave, part was in her mistakes.
I just discussed the major mistake – scheming with Adam instead of against him. That alerted him to her thoughts and was viewed by him as backstabbing before she needed to. But that wasn’t the only issue.
When I interviewed Brad, he specifically said, “I didn’t really trust Jenny.” He added, “there’s something about that girl from day one that my guy was like, ‘don’t trust this girl, she’s kind of shady.’” Indeed, she did not appear to be a part of her original tribe’s alliance, as Brad was close to Becky and Yul while she didn’t seem to be. Being viewed as “shady” and plotting against the girlfriend of one of the main allies in her tribe is a bad combination.
The third rule tells players to be flexible. In this case, it affects Jenny in a couple different ways. While it would be unreasonable to expect players to think, “Hmmm, there might be a double-vote in the note, so I need to prepare for that,” it is perfectly reasonable to expect those same players to be thinking more than one vote ahead rather than being locked into the one-day-at-a-time strategy.
My father called me after the double-Tribal Council and asked if I thought the tribe had guessed the note called for a second vote, because the results were so lopsided against Jenny. But no, there is no evidence they believed that would be in the note. There is evidence, however, that the original Raros were thinking ahead. We saw Adam say that because of the way Jenny was acting, she was the most likely one to go after Rebecca. Obviously, the original Raros discussed this point and were thinking about the future.
But just as obviously, Jenny was not thinking ahead. She told me that if she had realized she was in danger, she’d have spoken up at Tribal Council. But she apparently felt fairly safe. While she was plotting to oust Candice or Adam, she didn’t realize that the others figured this out and were gunning for her.1 2 Next-->
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