Survivor: Season 22 Episode 1

What if Rob and Russell weren’t the two former players who were allowed back?  What if it were two random former players that haven’t been back for a second, let alone fourth, time yet?  What if it were two former players that were voted off first in their seasons and were seeking redemption?  What if instead of any former players, it were Mitch Hedberg and the stunningly handsome Ed Harris who got off that second helicopter?  What if heaven could send me back the 30 seconds that I lost to the first “Survivor What If?” ad thing.  Fortunately, Her Sweetness and I watched the first 20 minutes of American Idol in order to let Survivor get enough ahead on the dvr that we could zip through the commercials.  Quite the fortuitous decision by us given that there were at least 2 more “What If” ad things that we were able to skip through.  We get it CBS, there’s a new gimmick this season that you don’t think we’re smart enough to grasp, stop cramming it down our throats, we’re former federal agents, we’re smart.


I’d soil myself if I had to sit on the edge of that helicopter while it nose dove.  Since it’s the first episode, let’s discuss a few rules that everyone should know in order to make it through the first vote.  Do at least some work around camp.  Don’t lead.  Talk way less than you want to, but don’t be creepy.  Smile.  If you’re lucky enough to find an immunity idol, tell absolutely no one, you just met these people.  Don’t attempt to make a game changing move when the game hasn’t even had time to breathe yet.  If you’re thinking about making a game changing move, assume that everyone in the tribe has figured it out, then plan accordingly.  That will probably make you nice and paranoid, but at least it’ll pass the time.  Wear pants and a long sleeved shirt.

There’s so much to digest from the first episode, so I’ll try to hit on as many of them as I can, as efficiently as I can:

  • Tools!  Tools?  What the f#%k?  Why are these people given tools… in a box?  Did you see how many nails there were in that tool box?  If this is only about product placement, that’s lame.  And if there is no tool box on Redemption Island, that’s the dreaded Double Lame.
  • If I were forming a band, Red Neck Man Sweater would be up for discussion as the name of said band.
  • Why is Phillip not a Federal Agent any more?
  • Every time someone talks with him, they should call it a briefing.
  • My theory is that Phillip has not watched very much Survivor before.
  • That took a lot of brass for Kristina to not play the idol.  I would have.  I wouldn’t have given it to Massachusetts Bob, (NEVER GIVE UP AN IDOL!), but I probably would have played it just to be safe.
  • Why didn’t Kristina vote for Francesca?  Or Francesca for Kristina?  Voting for Phillip was a wasted vote at that point.
  • The older white guy is named Steve Wright.  Apparently he played for the Cowboys in the 80’s.  I would have preferred Steven Wright the comedian.
  • Blonde dreadlocks man played in the NFL too.  I wonder if they know each other.
  • Seemed like the shots of animals and bugs were extra neat-o last night.
  • This Redemption Island gimmick means there will be combined reward/immunity challenges again.  Not a fan.

Time to pick a winner.  Since there are 18 people to choose from and some of them weren’t shown speaking last night, I took to the CBS website to read some contestant bios so I can make a super informed guess on who the winner will be.  One thing I’ll say is that based on their bios, just about all of the contestants think they’ll win because they can spot liars.  If Phillip hangs around, they might not have to worry about using that skill.

She didn’t say or do all that much last night, but I’m going with Sarita.  Reading her bio, I learned what sagacious means, and I also learned what a yurt is.  Her hippie parents built and lived in one (image search it).  For that, she gets my vote.  Andrea is my second choice for reasons that I’ll explain if she seems like a better decision down the road.

Survivor Freeze Frame of the Week:  Will not be seen this week.  I don’t have my camera at my disposal.  And my throat is dry, but it’s being treated.

Country and Western

What am I doing?  I’ve been listening to Country and Western music for a month and not writing about it.  I have plenty to say.  First, there ARE things that I like, and there are a handful of songs that will make it onto my ipod when I start listening to it again.

"It's three o'clock and he hasn't showered yeeeeeeeeeeeet!

Jennifer Nettles’ voice is one of them.  If she could follow me around and narrate my day, just for one day, that happiness would more than make up for the Dolphins not having a good quarterback for the last 15 years.

Second, the first 1:37 of “Portland, Oregon” by Loretta Lynn.  As I type this, I’m listening to a version  that she did with Jack White.  I typed in Jack Black there by mistake, and deleted it, but I wouldn’t mind seeing Jack Black and Loretta Lynn rock out.
I think I started liking “Me and My Gang” by Rascal Flatts.  Or maybe  I like parts of it, maybe it’s that voice box thing in the beginning that brings out the subconscious Jersey/Bon Jovi/T-Shirt Time blood in me.  They mention  Oregon in the lyrics too.  What the hell’s happening in Oregon?

Trace Adkins seems cool, but is he really cool?  I wonder what he eats and drinks.  He should try and push the Adkins Diet on us whatever it is.

I miss listening to my music, though.  It’s testing my discipline, but I haven’t listened to anything non-country by choice.  Bars have other music playing,  so I have no choice but to listen to it when drinking with the public.  I also get music relief from movies as well.  Her Sweetness put on this clip from A Knight’s Tale, which I had never seen.  I don’t know what the hell is going on in that movie, but I thank it for the Bowie break.

On a different note, Survivor starts on Wednesday.  I’m going to try and post reviews here on Thursdays, but I just took a job with odd hours so I won’t get to see most episodes until Thursday afternoon.  So you’ll have to be patient.

Fantasy poop.

This may be my final fantasy update of the season as I have no teams with anything to play for.  When we last spoke, Roll Over needed a small miracle to make the playoffs.  We had to win our game against the first place team, then have the 4th place team lose to a 4-9 team.  The 4-9 team started off with a zero from the Titans’ defense against the Colts on Thursday night, that didn’t bode well.  With his opponent starting Aaron Rodgers against the Lions, all seemed lost.  Then Rodgers got hurt early and I let a little slice of hope creep in….dummy.  The 4-9 team had picked up Lance Moore earlier in the week, but in this league, if you pick someone up they aren’t automatically placed in your starting lineup.  So this guy had a vacant spot in his lineup as the 4:00 games approached.  He had Lance Moore and Vincent Jackson to choose from, so I figured he was just waiting to see if Jackson was active.  4:15 came and went and he didn’t make any changes.  That was that.  His opponent had DeSean Jackson going on Sunday night to throw the last shovelfuls of dirt on our grave.  We won our game by 52 points, by the way, and are the overall points leader by more than 70 points.

What went wrong with this team?  Long story short, we were a victim of the schedule.  We were one of the top three scoring teams most weeks, but just happened to play someone that scored more that week.  In weeks 12 and 13, when all we needed was one win, we lost by a combined 1.74 points.  I blame Chris Johnson’s two week crapfest, and Andre Johnson’s ejection for this.  That’s that.

As for Space Mountain, ugggh.  As predicted Matt Prater got hurt, leaving us with no kicker, because we have no drop/add moves left.  This week, Kyle Orton got benched, or is he hurt too?  Honestly, I stopped looking.

I think there’s a chance we can finish in 4th and make some money, but I don’t care enough to do the math, because there’s a tie involved.  Ryan Mathews apparently had a good game finally.  Suck it, Ryan Mathews, suck it all day long.

What looks like our only bright spot, will surely lead to some frustration.  We actually have a lot of decent players to pick from when thinking about our two keepers next season.  Michael Vick, Mathews?, maybe Felix Jones, Brandon Marshall, Sidney Rice, Vincent Jackson, and Michael Crabtree.  Some of these guys will be on different teams, or have new quarterbacks, or new coaches, so a lot needs to happen.  First we need to find out when they’ll be playing football again.

There you go.  At least I’m sleeping much better than I was in August.

Survivor: Day of Reckonin’

For the first 10 minutes of last night’s episode there was a winter storm warning scrolling across the bottom of the screen.  This is the first such warning since Her Sweetness and I moved to Charlotte in July and a winter storm in Charlotte is apparently just cold rain.  Schools are delayed.  I’ll be honest, I don’t think I’ll feel like a local any time soon, but by the end of the episode a little Carolina pride blossomed inside of me like a little baby bit of okra.  With about 15 minutes left in the episode, I thought, “Boy, Chase’d better not show his face in my Carolina neighborhood.  Liar.  Backstabber.  Flipper!”

I’ve seen every episode of Survivor and very few moments have captivated me as much as last night when Jane just wanted to make sure that her alliance was still strong.  This is a game built on lying and Jane thought she was in an honest to goodness alliance of honest people, except Sash.  When she asked them if they still had an alliance of four or if that had changed, typically contestants would just lie to appease her and surprise her at Tribal Council.  But you see, Holly can’t lie, Chase can’t lie, and Sash is smart enough not to get the blood on his hands.  Holly is smart enough to know that if you’re not talking, you’re not lying, so let Chase do all the talking.  He’s stupid, he’s young, let him stammer.  And stammer he did.   Twice this episode, Holly and Sash shut up while Chase made an ass out of himself.  At Tribal Council, Probst even said during one of the silences, “The game is being played right now.”

Back to Jane’s moment, watching the rage flick on behind her eyes when she realized she was out was as gripping as reality television can get unless someone passes out face down into a roaring campfire.  Then Sash drove the dagger home.  Survivor was nice enough to even toll a bell at the moment the camera cut to Jane.  Good times.  By the way does Jane look a little like Susan Sarandon to anyone else?

The first question that came to my mind was why wouldn’t Fabio and Dan form a quick alliance with Jane and vote out Holly.  Easy, they both have a better chance to win immunity two more times than they do of beating Jane against a jury, so why bring her?  Actually Dan has no chance to win anything, this is more about Fabio.  Seriously, are there two people that deserve to win less than Dan?  No, of the five people left, I would rank them: Sash, Holly, Fabio, Dan, Chase in terms of deserving to win.  Chase is last because he has dumbed his way through this whole game.  At least Dan knows he has no chance.  If it’s up to me, I take Dan and Chase to the finals and I’d be a lock to win.  I guess I’m rooting for Fabio, though.  I’m not sure why.

  • I guess there won’t be an auction this season.  I’m bummed.
  • Who do you think is going to rebuild the fire?  I remember Fabio getting the smoke in his eyes earlier this season, but can he build a fire?
  • Chase has really gotten his share of life lessons this season.
  • Probably some uncomfortable moments when Jane met Marty after being eliminated.  Marty threw the target on Jane’s back weeks ago and it stayed there until last night.  If Marty hadn’t said anything, I doubt that anyone this season would have been smart enough to see the threat Jane was.
  • If my Dad came on to the show to participate in a challenge, I would kiss him that much only to make him uncomfortable on television.  Quite frankly, I was a little uncomfortable watching that.
  • “What?  I didn’t know Fabio was that smart?”  He really rocked that puzzle.
  • Anyone miss Purple Kelly?
  • Holly’s husband seemed Super South Dakota Fired Up to be there.

Survivor Freeze Frame of the Week: I’ve got a few for you this week.

The Bell tolls for thee:

Hey, ummm, I think I’d….yeah, I’d like you to stop that:

There’s no way both of them know what that word means:

Quick Fantasy Update

Roll Over lost by 1.7 points last week, it was a killer loss.  That means we’ve lost our last 2 games by a combined 1.74 points.  We are now two games out of third and 1 game out of the fourth and final playoff spot.  We are 5-7 and there are 4 teams tied at 6-6 for the last playoff spot.  We need to win our next 2 games and get a lot of help, but we will win the tie-breaker if we get there, because we have the most total points in the league.  So hopes are slim, especially after last week.  We started off well with Tom Brady on Thanksgiving, but then Andre Johnson got ejected for beating up Cortland Finnegan, and Chris Johnson got .5 points.  .5 points.  .5 points.  We lost by 1.7, that’s 17 more yards from Chris Johnson and we would have been in good shape.   Sad.

In TUFFKL, as predicted here, Vincent Jackson got hurt on the first series and didn’t get us a point.  We lost by 11 points, we played Reggie Bush instead of Felix Jones and Sidney Rice got 3 points.  We’re 6-7, 4 games out of first with 4 to go.  This team feels like the Black Knight, minus the confidence.  The only thing keeping me interested is to try and guess who will get hurt next.  Reggie Bush seems obvious, but Johnny Knox would be the least convenient.  Actually, Matt Prater would be the least convenient as we already have Mike Nugent on IR, and can’t make any more drop/adds.

Survivor: We don’t get that hour back.

I’m giving this recap a half-assed effort in honor of the job that the casting department did this season.  I’m annoyed by the whole episode last night, I hope this isn’t a sign of this show slowing down, but between two people quitting and watching people watch a movie, there aren’t many positives to say about this episode.  Maybe it’s because last week was a recap, but I was expecting more.  Much like Holly who just wants a hot dog, this episode left me hungry.

You know what?  I’m not even going to type any more paragraphs.  Here….bullets:

  • I appreciate that Jeff Probst gets genuinely angry when people quit.  He sits in the same rain as the contestants at Tribal Council and he seems like a fan of the game.  I don’t know what his accommodations are like off-camera, there’s probably at least a roof, but I feel like he cares.  This matters to me.
  • When is the last time that there wasn’t a solid alliance this late in the game?
  • I look forward to whatever buffoonery Chase has in store for his newly acquired immunity idol.
  • The reward challenge looked pretty difficult, which is disappointing considering the reward was candy and jalapenos.  I would have taken all of the peanut M&M’s.
  • Why was Alina crying?
  • I would have like to see Marty’s pre-jury hair battle that rain.

No more bullets, consider this blog smuffed.

Except for the Survivor Freeze Frame of the Week. Since the show has stopped bringing it strong these last few weeks, I’m going to bring it hard.  Consider it broughten:

This is just funny:

And this is what it feels like when you don’t get your hot dog: