Quick Note: We’re going to be bringing you all kinds of “Survivor” fun this season including episode recaps, exit interviews, and Power Rankings with Michael Skupin. Be sure to follow me on Twitter (@gordonholmes) for up-to-the-minute news and info.
The Rules: Each week Michael and Gordon will create separate Power Rankings. The ranking of the person who is voted out of the next episode will determine the number of points the two players will earn. For example, if Dawn is voted out this week, Michael will receive 1 point and Gordon will receive 8 points. The person with the most points at the end of the season will be crowned the ‘Survivor: Caramoan’ Power Rankings champion!
Last Week: Skupin and Gordon both had Michael in spot ten. So, the current score is Team Skupin 105, Team Lightning Punch 125.
Before we kick off this week’s rankings, let’s check in with our competitors…
Gordon Holmes: Well, last week’s episode was certainly eventful.
Michael Skupin: In what I think is a “Survivor” first; Malcolm, on-the-fly, convinced Reynold to give up the idol as Reynold “feeling ultra-threatened” walked towards Probst. I still can’t tell if it was predetermined based on the Probst inquisition at Tribal or if Malcolm was strategically trying to flush an idol so many people knew about. I wonder if Reynold will stay in the dark or realize that the same guy who asked him for his idol was the same person who voted for him and had an idol of his own. Malcolm’s going to have to trust someone out there and the pickings are as slim as toothpaste at this point.
Holmes: Any parting words for the other Michael?
Skupin: Goodbye, Michael…all the baskets you put your eggs in seemed to disappear. First Matt, then Corinne. Your friendliness and clingy personality, while attractive in life, are the kiss of death on “Survivor.” Strategically, you understood a lot about the game, but you stayed loyal to the wrong people. A big move may have saved you but most people are afraid to make them. Welcome to that club. We all enjoyed you out there.
Michael’s Current Score: 105
Any advice for Michael? Drop him a line on Twitter: @mikeskupin
|Gordon’s Current Score: 125
Any advice for Gordon? Drop him a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes
| 1. Dawn: Her gameplay is so ultra impressive that as a viewer I’m beginning to wonder if the crying and emotion is part of her strategy. Ha! Not likely, but it’s fun to speculate. Viewers have no idea how hard this game is ethically to play. You are forced to make decisions daily, often hourly that you’d never consider “off the island” and it wears on your psyche in ways you’ve never been tested before. The past three contestants credited you for their departure and that streak is likely to continue.
||1. Cochran: Right now Cochran is the least hated person in the dominant alliance. That’s a great position to be in…as long as everyone else isn’t paying attention. So, right now is not the time for my dawg, Cochran the Man, to just kick back, pop a brew, and chillax. (Turning off the bro speak…) Now might be a good time for Cochran to pick a fight with someone who likely won’t sway many votes once they’re on the jury. Sherri might be a good candidate, but that depends on how well her and Phillip are getting along.|
| 2. Cochran: The wizard of wit should be thanking the stars that Dawn is in his alliance. Everyone trusts Dawn and she trusts you. Sticking like glue to her and out-stealthing the Stealth is your best weapon. Your “man-ing up with Da Boys” has us highly entertained.
|| 2. Sherri: I’m expecting major fallout after last week’s Tribal Council shocker. Malcolm knows that Dawn can’t be trusted, Stealth R Us Too knows that Malcolm is close enough to Reynold to get an idol, and Andrea now knows definitively that she’s a major target. Now’s the perfect time for Tenacity to sit back and let the sparks fly.
| 3. Andrea: AMAZING that it was your idea not to vote off Malcolm. You stood your ground and single-handedly saved the game for your alliance. People are really beginning to trust you. The only mistake I see is at Tribal Council your letting Probst take you out of your game. Since your name came up several times at the first vote, you’ve played an impeccable game. Remember what personalities are leading the charge. Play that game and make your break when it works to your benefit. And don’t fall for a man in a uniform.
|| 3. Brenda: Congrats on winning immunity last week. Maybe not the smartest move for someone who’s playing such a solid under-the-radar game, but with your knee injury it’s probably not the end of the world. What I’d like to know right now is; what is your end game? Surely you and Erik aren’t just sitting around waiting for Andrea, Phillip, Dawn, and Cochran to put this game in lockdown, are you?
| 4. Brenda: Your under-the-radar (UTR) game in a Carter-like fashion became over-the-radar (OTR) last week when you bested some pretty incredibly burly guys to win that immunity challenge. As I see it, an UTR game needs to stay UTR in ALL areas. You’ve now become an outright challenge threat and that will surely be a factor in votes. Pick one game, you can’t play both.
|| 4. Erik: Ahem…are you?
| 5. Sherri: In the beginning brilliant strategically, Shamar was your “Phillip” and since Shamar was medi-vacced you’ve had no Phillip. Since the merge, you’ve quietly become Phillip’s Julia and he’s become your Phillip. So what I’m trying to say is Phillip is now your Phillip and he’s being played as Phillip for the second season in a row and you’re the only fan to see that open door. I mistakenly thought your “quiet” was a confidence issue but instead it’s appearing to be the best fan strategy out there.
|| 5. Phillip: Phillip has a grand plan for winning “Survivor.” He wants to be the goofy leader of Stealth R Us Too with the pink panties and the deep blue shoes. He wants to ride those gimmicks to the final Tribal Council, where he’ll reveal that all of that silliness is by design and that he’s really a nice guy. Well, Phillip really is a nice guy. But, the jury won’t care. They’re going to award the million to one of the two people he’s sitting with.
| 6. Erik: I’m pretty sure he’s still there. If you keep asking, they’ll keep pointing. Thank goodness for flags.
|| 6. Malcolm: Wow…just wow. Your little stratagem at last week’s Tribal might be the Best/Worst move in “Survivor” history. Best, because you voted for Reynold so you could have plausible deniability if Andrea went home. Worst, because you outted yourself as being in an alliance with Reynold when you asked for the idol. And best again because you got a dude to give you an idol when you already had one. Again…wow.
| 7. Eddie: Now that Reynold’s idol is flushed you appear way less of a threat than your bearded twin. Buddying up to Andrea was great strategy, but pushing her for info at the end wrecked your showmance. You can try all you want but you can’t outplay a crafty fox like Andrea.
|| 7. Andrea: Everybody thought Dre was being paranoid when she made them target Michael instead of splitting the vote. Who’s paranoid now? Not only that, but now she appreciates that nobody is afraid of Phillip. Of the ten people left in the game, Phillip is probably the only one who can’t win. That makes him everyone’s dream final three buddy. Andrea’s best bet now is to stick tight to Phillip and try to get to the end with the other unpopular member of her alliance…
| 8. Phillip: Sherri will not be your new Julia. She’s way more crafty. Plus, she prefers something more exotic than vanilla. You’ve never wavered from your game which concerns me a little. Predictability and lit torches don’t stay partners very long.
|| 8. Dawn: It looks like Dawn’s in for a rough week. But, that’s to be expected. When a group of people put their trust in you and you defy them, you’re going to have to take some heat. Dawn’s deception puts a huge target on her back and probably turned one definite and three potential jury members against her. She needs to do some serious damage control if she’s going to win at a final Tribal.
| 9. Reynold: You kept your impeccable record intact, and another Tribal Council where the votes were a big shocker for you. You came to this episode with a fresh new attitude, formed a bro-down alliance, however adding your biggest threat (Cochran) to a man-up alliance was not the best strategy…but it was strategy nonetheless. Your “muscle” alliance sold to a non-muscle guy may have been your biggest blunder yet which is why you’re down here this week. I think you are going to be joining the “new kids on the block” soon but that block is named Ponderosa Lane.
|| 9. Eddie: My first instinct when last week’s drama happened was, “Eddie blew it. He let Andrea know she was in trouble and she put an end to the vote splitting.” However, that’s probably not accurate. Andrea would’ve heard about Malcolm’s plan from Dawn. So, the good news for Eddie is that him helping Andrea may have bought him some time. The bad news is Andrea can’t save him forever.
| 10. Malcolm: That may have been the first post-merge reward that you were not a part of in your storied “Survivor” career. It appears you’re making the same mistake Corinne did and assumed that Dawn was on the bottom of the alliance and I don’t blame you. I imagine Dawn pretty convincingly is playing that trump card. Who wouldn’t believe that Cochran would betray her again? Who woulda thought that Dawn would be this new amazing strategic brilliance? She claims you’re not “dialed in,” but you’ll have to wait all 39 days because they won’t have phones at Ponderosa either where I think you are headed next.
|| 10. Reynold: I think Reynold is 2/3rds of a great “Survivor” player. He’s a charismatic guy and he’s a challenge machine, but he doesn’t have the strategy down just yet. Don’t get me wrong, as I’m rewatching “Exile Island” and screaming at the TV every time Terry doesn’t use the idol to save one of his alliance mates, I can appreciate Reynold trying to rescue Malcolm. But intimidation is the wrong way to play someone like Dawn. She has forty kids, you can’t intimidate her.