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Survivor: China – Advice for the Remaining 13by Jeffrey Clinard -- 10/10/2007
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The kidnapping aspect to this season of Survivor puts strain on both the kidnapping tribe and the victim. The tribe has to be careful not to show where the cracks and conflict are in it, while the victim has to try to get as much information as possible. Even more important is what information they can and can’t share with their original tribe. Leslie learned the hard way that when somebody loves them a bit too much and have things in common, it’s time to start worrying about their loyalty if they make it to the merge.
The reward challenge I found interesting as the result would have gone the other way if the challenge started with men on men. Fei Long’s men dominated their events, but the women of Zhan Hu were unbeaten. This is because there seems to be more of a discrepancy in the tribe makeup, with Zhan Hu having more of a balance in terms of tribe strength, while Fei Long seems to have weaker women and stronger men. This also showed up in the immunity challenge when Courtney had so much difficulty cutting through her station. Zhan Hu had all four sets of puzzle pieces before Courtney had Fei Long’s first set.
This makes it important for tribes to carefully select who sits out of challenges when one tribe outnumbers the other, and to carefully consider which position to put each tribe member on in challenges where different Survivors play different roles. Fei Long did well by sitting out the smallest players in the reward challenge, even knowing they would have to participate in the immunity challenge. They had no way of knowing what skills were needed in the immunity challenge. Still, they might have won the challenge if they had Courtney and James on the puzzle and the other participants chop the ropes. James could easily have hauled the puzzle by himself. Hindsight is 20/20.
The game is still young, but already some Survivors are in stronger positions than others. What should each player be doing to advance through the next phase of game? It’s advice for the remaining 13.
Zhan Hu: You did a good job of not giving away any tribal secrets while Leslie was your guest while worming information out of her regarding the members of her tribe. You also did well in both challenges. This seems to show you’re working together and taking advantage of your strengths.
Frosti: I think you might want to talk more with Peih-Gee, as I think Dave is getting on everybody’s nerves and they’re prepared to mutiny sooner rather than later. If that happens, you’ll want to be on her side as she’ll be the next in line when it comes to leadership.
Dave: I think Peih-Gee is right in that you can’t just work all the time; you need energy for challenges. While working around camp is good, too much of it makes you an outcast as people feel resentful or annoyed. Neither working too hard or too little is a good thing, and the kiss bit didn’t make you any friends. Also, please keep your pants on in future competitions.
Erik: Well, you did the best you could in the reward challenge, but it wasn’t enough, and it would be hard to win against James in any case. You did a good job at having fun and making sure no tribal secrets were passed to Leslie. The only worry I have about you is that you don’t seem to be bonding well with many of the players (at least on screen). You may have an easy next cut in Sherea, but after that you’ll need to worry about being kept in the game if you haven’t made enough allies.
Jaime: Well done in getting the tribe to kidnap Leslie; as you hoped, she returned the favor by giving you the clue to the immunity idol. Don’t feel too bad about not figuring it out yet; there are only two clues. You should learn from the mistake of Leslie and pretend not to be close to any of the Fei Long tribe, particularly if you are kidnapped again. Game-wise, you need to stick close to Dave and Peih-Gee for now; you seem popular and will make a good alliance partner.
Peih-Gee: While I think you may be right about Dave, you really need to let it go. It’s not working, and it’s just making him upset. This is the good thing about not being the leader - he gets the heat for not fitting in with the tribe. Stick with him, but pick up Jaime and either Erik or Frosti as an alliance vote. That’s enough to control the tribe. Vote out Sherea next; it’s the easy step to take and she doesn’t seem to be a part of your group.
Sherea: You have problems, as you seem to be somewhat of a loner or outcast in the tribe. You need to bond quickly, and try to make sure Dave’s leadership becomes the biggest issue in the camp. If you have to, try to make the vote a referendum on his leadership ability.1 2 Next-->
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