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Survivor: Fiji – Why Sylvia Lostby David Bloomberg -- 02/23/2007
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It seemed obvious that Sylvia would be the next one to go. But then, things got a bit weird and it looked like Anthony might actually step up to the chopping block instead. No such luck this time around for Sylvia, though. So why did Sylvia lose?
With such a split vote, it’s clear that things are a mess on Ravu. But we can look past that mess to answer our questions by looking back at What Fiji Survivors Should Have Learned to dig out the reasons the same way Sylvia was trying to dig out the hidden immunity idol.
The first rule tells players they need to scheme and plot. However, this didn’t seem to be Sylvia’s bag. The only time we really saw her even discussing the vote was when Mookie told her the vote was going against Anthony. We saw no indication that she took a proactive role in trying to ensure her continued participation in the game; we didn’t see her create alliances; we saw her being bossy, but not about important stuff like who would be voted out!
It’s true that Sylvia was in a bad position, having spent multiple days on Exile Island, but that should have made it all the more important for her to get into the groove and figure out just where she stood. It’s likely she was worried about looking pushy, but at this point, she should have known she was in trouble and needed to do something. That something needed to be more than just digging a little bit to see if the hidden immunity idol popped up.
So if she didn’t scheme and plot enough, it’s pretty clear she didn’t violate the second rule – which says not to do that too much. Thus, we’ll skip to number three.
That rule says players need to be flexible. They need to be able to “look at what’s going on around them and judge the proper way to proceed.” Given what we just said about Sylvia, it seems safe to say she failed here. Although she listed a litany of reasons the others might want to vote her out, she seemed to accept what Mookie told her about the majority aiming at Anthony instead. Indeed, she was even upset about it when she was voted out! Maybe Sylvia was in denial, but she should have known she was the target, and as noted above, she needed to do something about it.
The fourth rule tells players not to allow their emotions to control them. This was not an issue here, so we’ll jump to the fifth, which says to pretend to be nice. Sylvia did appear to be nice – at least most of the time. However, early on some people got the definite idea that she was bossy. This didn’t sit well with those folks, and it made her an early – and easy – target. It looked like Sylvia was trying to get around being bossy by making “suggestions” instead. The problem was that those were just as annoying as bossing people around!
Sixth is to not be too much of a threat. Given that Sylvia was not a threat to anybody, we can consider this one a non-issue. Similarly, we didn’t see anything that showed Sylvia as being lazy. So the seventh rule goes away.
But the eighth rule tells players they should be voting off the weakest members of the tribe at this point. Given that in the two previous votes, people who screwed up in challenges were booted, it’s not surprising to see this rule come into play in a major way here.
However, Sylvia was not the only one targeted for this reason. Rather, Mookie went after Anthony for his failure in the immunity challenge (despite the fact that Earl and Sylvia also failed in their head-to-heads). But Sylvia had more of a long-term bad track record when it came to challenges and it’s unlikely they will face another gross food challenge, so Anthony’s weakness there won’t become an issue again. She admitted she was the oldest woman, the person with the least strength, etc. And in the reward challenge, she really screwed up.
To make matters worse, she reminded her tribemates about it by apologizing! While it’s likely they weren’t going to forget, there was plenty of blame to go around in the reward challenge and there had been a loss at the immunity challenge by this time, so why put the focus on yourself? She needed to be quiet about it, not bring it out in the open again.
Sylvia was never destined to go far in the game of Survivor. She simply had too many negatives stacked against her: Age, strength relative to the others on her tribe, the appearance (and possible reality) of being pushy, lack of survival skills, etc. Frankly, I believe she only lasted this long because she was on Exile Island the first week and then Erica drew too much attention to herself the second week. It almost happened again in the third week, but by this point, enough people decided it was time for her to go. Sylvia was simply too much of a weak link on the team. While some members of Ravu didn’t like what they thought they saw of Anthony’s attitude, there was no doubting who was going to help the tribe more in general. That is why Sylvia 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.
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