Survivor Vanuatu: Monty Brinton
Dalton Ross
November 11, 2004 AT 05:00 AM EST

”Survivor”: The last days of Lopevi

So, it’s a few hours before the latest episode of Survivor, and I’m sitting on the set of the Survivor Live Internet show with hosts Richard Hatch and Chris Booker, whose hair, I must say, really does the most amazing, gravity-defying things. I’m the show’s guest for the day, which just goes to show how low Survivor Live will stoop if they’re having an idiot like me on. (What, was Sonja Christopher too busy?) Anyway, I digress. So, someone calls in all confused because CBS has been airing promos all week touting the battle between five women versus three men. Only one problem: There were six women still on the show.

So, now the floodgates are open and everyone has a theory as to what it means. Maybe someone has to leave the show for personal reasons. Maybe someone gets booted out at the very start of the episode. People are dissecting the promo like it’s the freakin’ Zapruder film. Well, guess what? It simply turns out someone at CBS can’t add. That’s it. Nothing more. Mystery solved. And although it’s ultimately disappointing, it fits right in with what has by and large been a very anticlimactic season of Survivor. I had been holding out hope that once the merge happened, things would pick up and be mixed up, but alas, once again, the predictable party (in this case, Sarge) was sent packing.

And while I was rooting for Sarge and the guys to stick around just for the sake of a shake-up, honestly, they’re getting exactly what they deserve. First they kick out John K. instead of Julie, leaving themselves vulnerable numerically. Then they fail to secure Twila and Julie’s allegiance. And then, in the all-important immunity challenge, they all choke — big time! That was worse than the Yankees in the A.L.C.S. I mean, at least the Bronx Bombers won a few games. These three clowns didn’t even make it out of the first round!

And just to hammer home how disorganized and sloppy they were, none of the fellas even voted for the same person at Tribal Council. Sarge went for Eliza, Chad for Julie, and Chris completely jumped ship, voting off Sarge . . . and his own spine in the process. Get it together, guys! Actually, never mind. You’re all done for at this point, so you know what? To quote my good friends in Digital Underground — doowhatchalike.

Continuing with the sour mood among the men, even our boy Probst seemed grumpy. Did you catch him rubbing Eliza’s face in it when she screwed up the puzzle in the immunity challenge. ”What do you think you might have messed up?” he asked her. When she told him, he was all ”Nope. But you messed something else up. You’re wrong.” I love that he just threw that ”You’re wrong” in there at the end. Why not tack on a ”In your face, sucka!” while you’re at it? He really had it in for her this episode, even saying at Tribal Council, ”Dating back as far as the very first Tribal Council, it seems like you’ve been struggling with this group of women.” Ouch. Eliza! Read between the lines, sister! He’s telling you how much everybody hates you, and how the women will ditch you as soon as possible. Pick up the signals, lady! You know, like those signals when you were the first woman eliminated at the reward challenge? Yeah, signals like that. And once you’ve picked those up, you may feel free to shut up.

As for the rest of the women, that whole move of Leann and Julie bringing back chicken wings for the ladies and bones for the men — that was completely cruel and unnecessary. And I loved it. Who tapes chicken wings to their leg, anyway? How nasty is that? Still, it was pretty hilarious seeing how appreciative Sarge and Chad were for their mere scraps. Sometimes I guess ignorance is bliss.

So, where are we at now? Well, it looks like curtains for Chad, which will really be a shame because I’ve become quite fond of his shocked, open-mouth expressions at the past few Tribal Councils. As far as I’m concerned, any sort of eye-rolling or jaw-dropping facial maneuvers are the Survivor equivalent of money shots. Pure gold. And as for Chris, I still don’t understand your little speech about how ”This is a vote for you, not against you” right as you voted against Sarge. Allow me to drop a little history on you, my friend (and sound pathetically white in the process) — I have yet to see a backstabbing of a best friend pay off in Survivor, and I don’t think I’m gonna see it here.

What do you think? Can the women’s alliance hold? Will Chris’ betrayal help him get farther in the game, or are his odds as good as the odds he’ll ever get across that damn balance beam?

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