Ryan Opray: Monty Brinton
Dalton Ross
November 13, 2003 AT 05:00 AM EST

Talk of ousting Rupert comes to nothing

Okay, so I take a few weeks off from doing my ”Survivor” column, figuring, ”Hey, Josh Wolk can handle this for me. He watches the show. I’m sure nothing too drastic will happen.” And nothing drastic did happen. EVERYTHING drastic happened! Whoops! I’ll spare you all my thoughts on the whole Outcast tribe thing (although how genius was Skinny Ryan’s bandana that read ”Die Jerks”? Does anyone even use the word ”jerk” anymore?), Burton and Lil coming back, and Lil turning on the Morgan tribe seeing as A) it’s all old news and B) you can read my ramblings in this week’s issue of EW (wow, what a sales plug!), but suffice it to say, I’m not sure if I like the principle of bringing people back, but the result of their return was pretty gosh darn good.

Okay, enough of that. Let’s get to all the existing twists and turns of this latest episode!!! Oh? right, there were none. Damn! Just my luck. Back I come only to take on the most sedate ”Survivor” episode of the season. Not that nothing interesting happened, it’s just that this season has been SO good, that this drama-free ep was a bit of a letdown. Like that whole stingray thing. It was kind of cool to watch Burton catch it, but it would have been a whole lot COOLER to watch them suffer some serious injury as a result as opposed to the mild shocks they incurred that probably resembled when my sister would walk across the rug in her socks and touch my nose. A mild jolt at best.

Hearing all the strategy chatter with everyone talking about possibly voting off Rupert was intriguing, but then when it came time for the final challenge, they all practically gift-wrapped immunity for the big fella, which, last time I checked, was NOT the best way to get rid of someone. Don’t get me wrong — I was just as relieved as you that Rupe didn’t go (and that lame-o Ryan, or Rhino, or Ryno, or whatever the hell his name is DID). Also, the genesis of these discussions may linger on, if the teaser for next week is any indication. (I also can’t help but feel that Burton giving Lil the ”Scout’s Honor” that he would never turn on her could be something to keep an eye on, which is to say, I don’t believe him as far as I can throw him? which is not very far because I am a 140 pound weakling.)

And there were certainly other moments to cherish, like Probst’s weekly verbal beatdown of Johnny Fairplay, pointing out in the reward challenge that it was ”One more challenge Jon can not finish.” Nice. Or when Tijuana talked about not having any ”personal freedom,” because the Drake folks won’t let her sit on her lazy butt all day. And I believe Darrah may have uttered some interesting things at Tribal Council, but truth be told, with that accent I didn’t understand a single word she said.

I DID hear Ryan’s comments to Christa (whom in the grandest ”Survivor” tradition he spelled Krista) that ”You’re just plain and simply a bitch.” Gee, think he’s a tad bitter? That question was easy enough to answer when he tried to morph into Arnold Schwarzenegger with his ”I’ll be back, guys” send off. The only thing surprising about that vote off was that even Tijuana and Darrah dissed and dismissed him! Ouch!

And we’re now left wondering whether the other former Morganites are gonna predictably get picked off one by one, or if the Drakes will outthink themselves and prematurely get rid of Rupert and Burton. Here’s to the hope of people outthinking themselves. And here’s hoping that if Mark Burnett is going to keep up with the wild and wacky twists, that he can find a way to get Osten back in the game, because, man, I was having a freakin’ field day with that guy! Hey, a boy can dream, can’t he?

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