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Survivor: Cook Islands – Advice for the Remaining 8by Jeffrey Clinard -- 11/27/2006
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I thought long and hard whether I should be embarrassed about my last article, where I suggested Nate had the pole position if he played his cards right. I finally decided my biggest mistake was thinking most of the Raro tribe could spend five seconds thinking strategically. Jonathan was the sole exception, and while Nate and the remaining Raro tribe members all hate his guts right now, he made the only decision that made any sense.
To his credit, Yul played every single card he had correctly by identifying Jonathan as a person who will sell out if it’s in his best interest to do so. Indeed, their little dance both before and after the immunity challenge showed both players were asking the right questions and giving the right answers. Who did they think had the hidden immunity idol if it wasn’t Jonathan, Adam, or Candice?
Compare that dance to the one Jonathan tried to perform with the Raro tribe members. He might as well as gone duck hunting with an accordion. All he ended up doing was making noise nobody wanted to hear and didn’t get anything. A flat “Yul doesn’t have the idol” response showed a complete ignorance of the game and everything that has been going on over the past few weeks. Nate’s statement that Jonathan was trying to call the shots was ironic, as Jonathan ultimately did call the shot in the end. It hit Nate right between the eyes.
The big lesson is strategy generally seems to seek its own level. Yul provided a very reasonable answer to Jonathan’s question of, “Why should you trust me?” The answer is, “Because I trust you are strategic enough to save yourself over your tribe.” Trying strategy with “stupid, stupid people” (we all love Shii-Ann for that quote) doesn’t work. It’s why I’d rather play Survivor with strategic people. You can always trust a strategist to act rationally. You have to watch out for the nitwits.
The challenge was an interesting combination of endurance and strength, and my guess that Candice and Ozzy were likely to win was on the mark. Candice already showed the ability to cling tightly to poles once, and Ozzy climbs trees as well as Tarzan. If he hadn’t won immunity, things would have gone much differently as Jonathan likely would have voted with the other Raro members to vote him out.
The merge has happened, the Aitu tribe has once again shown themselves to be superior players, and eight people remain. What should they be doing to advance themselves in the game? It’s advice for the remaining eight.
Jonathan: While you should never have declared mutiny to begin with, you’ve made up for your bad decision by being the only member of the former new Raro tribe to show an ounce of strategy. Four people hate you right now, but it’s always better to have everybody hate you and be in the game instead of everybody liking you while you serve on jury duty. Try not to let the immature strategic nitwits that were Raro get to you. You came to win a million dollars, not sleep late, get drunk, and vomit. By the way, it was inspired to get rid of Nate. Not only did he not trust you, but he was bonding somewhat with Ozzy. Nate isn’t around to replace you in the Aitu alliance any longer.
Yul: Well played. You identified the one person on Raro who understood the danger involved with attempting to vote you out, and gave all the right answers to Jonathan’s question about why he should change sides. You didn’t even have to spell out the threat; Jonathan understood it perfectly. Also, telling him that you wanted him against you in the end was inspired because it was nothing he didn’t already know and it showed a degree of honesty, which is the foundation for trust.
Becky: You might have just been along for the ride, but your position is very solid. The Aitu alliance has Raro on the run, and you aren’t any kind of target right now. Try to stick very tight with Yul and Jonathan. Yul is nearly invulnerable as long as he has the idol, and Jonathan is a tempting jury opponent.
Ozzy: Well done in winning immunity. It was actually one of the key factors that gave Jonathan every reason to jump ship. Your ability to win individual immunity still makes you a threat, but your alliance still needs your vote. Nate might not have been your target of choice, but if he was the sacrifice Jonathan requested, it was worth it.
Sundra: Your short-term problems are fixed as the Aitu alliance is in the driver’s seat. Start looking down the road at what you can do to win. Jonathan might be somebody worth talking to in order to set the stage for the end game, as he’s a tempting jury opponent at this point. Otherwise, continue to dismantle the Raro tribe one member at a time.
Adam: Congratulations. You managed to embarrass yourself on national television. Between being the first to say, “He doesn’t have the idol,” you had other words of wisdom like “bananas” and “he’s thinking too much.” You got to kiss a pretty girl in the meantime, but right now you need to win immunity. Aitu seemed to want to vote you off first, but Jonathan picked out Nate as a target instead, giving you at least a chance to survive a little longer.
Candice: I’m getting more and more concerned about you, not just in the game, but in your noted choice of career. Doctors have to be able to think critically and evaluate all possibilities. You’ve shown none of that. I know you are hurt and angry at Jonathan’s betrayal, but he didn’t really have a choice, and he gave you every opportunity to make a better choice. Right now, you need to try to win immunity, or at least keep it out of Adam’s hands, as you are near the top of the hit list. You need time to try to find and exploit any cracks in the Aitu alliance, but that’s going to be hard as you betrayed them already and they have let you know in no uncertain terms how they felt about it.
Parvati: You may have the most time remaining of the three outsiders, so you better start thinking strategically for a change. If you understand WHY Jonathan did what he did, you’re one step closer to understanding what you need to do. The Aitu alliance is going to be hard to crack, but it will eventually, and the tightness of Yul and Becky can be used against them. Sundra, Ozzy, and Jonathan may be open to breaking it a few votes down the line. Get over your shock and start thinking up a new plan, or you’ll be easy to vote out.
Nate: What went wrong? More than anybody else, you’ve wanted to call the shots at Tribal Council, and threw strategy out the window in favor of the emotion of the day. I know you’re mad at Jonathan, but you really should be mad at yourself. You had a prime position and threw it all away because you didn’t want to consider the possibility that Yul had the hidden immunity idol.
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out these other recent Survivor: Cook Islands articles here on RealityNewsOnline:
Jeffrey Clinard has been writing about Survivor since the second series, and has published over 100 articles about the show and given advice to nearly 150 different Survivors on RealityNewsOnline. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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