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Survivor: Guatemala - Who Will Go in Episode 12?by Wesley Rice -- 12/01/2005
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Who will go in Episode Twelve? As seven Survivors drop to six, the clear choice this week seems to be Danni. But there are other factors that may come into play. Still, Danni has a tough road ahead after losing her ally Gary. Speaking of Gary, I managed to get back on a winning track last week by picking Gary as the next player eliminated. As did my daughter, who finally picked correctly after a number of baffling choices. You go girl!
And she has chosen again. After scooping up about two pictures each in both hands, my daughter taunted me by holding them up in her fists and winking. Yes! I swear she winked at me! She then promptly shoved both Rafe and Stephenie in her mouth. I believe that Rafe went in first, so I’m making him her pick this week (with Stephenie going if Rafe wins immunity). But what was the wink all about? Obviously she knows it won’t be Rafe going home. I think she’s just toying with me now.
Last week I mentioned three possible scenarios. The first was that the outsiders in the “Tribe of Five” would figure out the order of elimination and turn on Stephenie. The only one that seemed to really consider this last week was Lydia. However, because she was the only one, it ended up having serious ramifications for her, which I will discuss in greater detail in a moment.
The second scenario involved Judd shedding his Bill Bixby exterior (okay, more like a Gary Busey exterior, but just go with me on this one) and revealing his inner Hulk, thus alienating himself from his alliance. However, Judd did a surprisingly good job of keeping his disappointments to himself and solidifying himself in his alliance.
The third and final scenario (and the one I ended up going with) was that the “Tribe of Five” would continue on its course to eliminate Gary and then Danni. Ultimately they did, and Gary went home. Does that mean that Danni is next to go? Let’s consider the situation for each Survivor.
The Haven of Invulnerability has disappeared. At this point in the game no Survivor is “truly” safe. One Survivor could be in an obvious position of strength. But if that person makes one strategically stupid move or fails to notice some sly negotiating by a minority member, he or she could find him or herself on the wrong end of a signature Richard Hatch-style Bamboozling! Think Ami and LeAnn from Vanuatu for a good example of this.
If there was a Haven of Invulnerability still around, Rafe would almost certainly be living there. He has managed to work his way into several core alliances. He’s now super-tight with Cindy, and his Final Four alliance with Cindy, Judd, and Stephenie seems pretty secure as well. Likewise he remains on good terms with both Lydia and Danni. There are many options available to Rafe, and each one provides him a certain degree of safety.
The only real danger for Rafe is his string of immunity wins. Think back to Survivor: Australia. Colby was well liked by most of the players, but because of his many immunity wins, there was some talk of kicking him out if he lost immunity. Of course, we never found out if that would have been the case because he just kept winning. But the possibility exists that the others could turn on Rafe due to both his challenge skills and a likeability factor that makes him a dangerous opponent in the Final Two.
Cindy was very smart to choose Rafe in the challenge reward last week. It gave her the opportunity to affirm both their overall alliance as well as a tighter alliance of two that might take them both to the finals. It was the strategic move that she has needed to make for several weeks now. And it took her from being the fifth wheel to a solid Final Four competitor and possibly more. She still runs the risk of being voted out if Danni and/or Lydia make some unexpected moves. Her attitude has soured a bit lately, which could turn some players against her and limit her flexibility strategically, but she’s still probably safe this week.
Stephenie should be glad that Gary wasn’t able to turn Rafe or Cindy against her last week. Along with Lydia they could have easily switched the game around, sending Stephenie and Judd home. Fortunately for her, she managed to rein in both Rafe and Cindy so that the now “Tribe of Four” could power their way to the end. That doesn’t take Stephenie out of danger completely though. She’s still a big threat. And if anybody else gets tired of her stuffing corn in her mouth while she insists that everyone has had a fair share of meals, she may find herself going the way of the late Jamie much sooner than expected.
Earlier on, I truly thought that Stephenie and her other original tribemates were just stringing Judd along until they could dump him. But it seems clear now that they decided not to look a gift Judd in the mouth. He’s plainly offered his fealty to Queen Steph and plans to stay with her to the end. This puts him in the majority alliance heading towards the endgame. The revelation of his Immunity Idol lie in the last tribal council might stir things up a bit. But as I mentioned last week, I don’t think his alliance-mates really care at this point. Judd is Judd. They know he’s a fink, and they would be surprised to find out differently.
Lydia has made the greatest drop from last week. By targeting Steph during the reward challenge, she managed to instantly alienate herself from the rest of her alliance. She may have been a morale booster early on, but now that the final vote is in sight they seem to have abandoned her. It seems the general consensus of most of the remaining Survivors is that everyone else carried Lydia along themselves. She’s there but for the grace of
Now that Gary is gone, Danni’s ouster would fit the natural progression of this pseudo-Pagonging. She’s been hiding behind him for weeks now, and with him out of the way, there’s nobody left to buffer the vote. She also hasn’t been doing any strategizing or alliance-making that we’ve been privy too. Indeed, Danni seems like the obvious choice to be booted this week. So why am I so hesitant to show her the door?
Danni has received serious lack of face time lately. At this stage of the show, the players in danger almost always get the heavy editing. That’s what has me thinking. The major face time last episode belonged to Gary (who got the boot) and Lydia, not Danni. It really seems like last week was the set up and this week Lydia will go. I could be completely off here, but my gut tells me that the fishmonger is shark bait.
Will Lydia continue to try the nerves of Queen Stephenie and her knaves, or will Danni go quietly into the night? Find out with me this Thursday on Survivor!
Wesley is a writer and English teacher from Tulsa, OK. He wanted to work the phrase, “Excellent well; you are a fishmonger,” from Hamlet into his article. But given its intended meaning in the play felt that it just didn’t apply to Lydia all that well. He can be reached with questions, comments, or snide remarks at Musnud@Gmail.com.
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