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  1. S36.E05: A Diamond in the Rough

    I'd like to see them more organically incorporated into the show. At this point, I cringe about Ghost Island because I know somebody is going to go there and sob out their guts over their personal lives, in varying degrees of sadness. I love Ghost Island to relive the history, but they've used it as shorthand for character development, which is really shorthand for "these people will cry and you will like them, darn you!!!" and it's just awkward. I know Adam gets a crap ton of grief about his personal story, but that wasn't brought up until episode 4, and I personally found it more palatable because it was the one sad story of the season (and it really was a freaking sad story, not "I miss my grandma" or "I got divorced" or "My kids are my world.") Now every time we go to Ghost Island, it's like "Outwit. Outplay. Outsob."
  2. S16.E03: Auditions

    Literally all I want is an auditioner who comes in and says "Hi, I've had a pretty normal life, and a decent childhood and I'm just doing this for myself -- because I really like to sing." I'm so sick of American Idol: Sob Story Survivor.
  3. S36.E03: Trust Your Gut

    This is why I'm having such a hard time thinking what he did was so brilliant. It didn't work. It was a nice speech. A clever lie. But it didn't work. Maybe it gets Sebastian thinking, but maybe not. It's like giving a quarterback credit for a hail mary that was almost caught. He still lost the match, regardless of how good he made it sound. I'm willing to revisit my opinion of him if he gets someone to jump, but for tonight, ultimately, this felt like a lot of noise that failed to change people's minds.
  4. S36.E03: Trust Your Gut

    Is that what this season is going to be -- all Dr. Mike-type big spectacles that ultimately end up amounting to nothing? Because those speeches do mean nothing if everyone "sticks to the plan." Seriously, there was very little difference between Michael's speech and Dr. Mike's "give me liberty or give me airtime and throw off the tyrant yadda yadda yadda" last season. Interesting that for a "reverse the curse" season, the cursed items have ostensibly been involved with three of five of the first vote-outs of the season.
  5. S36.E02: Only Time Will Tell

    I'd actually argue the opposite -- that it was trying to bury a personal moment in the midst of a story. Ben's PTSD got space to breathe (as did Adam and his mom's cancer) and more time to hold viewer focus. They put this confessional on after Chris failed on Ghost Island. If anyone watched Australian Survivor, it reminded me of how they did Henry's mom's story -- kind of buried in the middle of everything. I found it more "here's a story, now let's get back to the game" as opposed to "here's a story, and we want you to listen to it."
  6. S36.E02: Only Time Will Tell

    Yeah, I feel like Jerry Seinfeld in that old bit about not understanding spy/action movies. "Why did they vote out that girl? Was she with them? I thought she was with them!"
  7. S36.E01: Can You Reverse the Curse?

    It's funny, I laughed at Ryan bragging about his social game, but in retrospect, he pretty much was running the Hustlers before his post-merge deterioration. And David, who was scared of a bird, clearly had a brain in his head as he found the idol right away, and was just socially savvy enough to stay under-the-radar until he could make a move. Jacob was neither smart nor socially savvy (from what we saw). I also got a real Gamergate-y vibe from him in a way I didn't with David and Ryan. But the moment I turned on Jacob entirely was when he said "Survivor's been on since I was four years old, and I've been watching from the beginning." I immediately yelled "Liar" at the TV. It had this instant ring of B.S. Who even knows what Survivor is when you're four? I just didn't believe a word that came out of his mouth after that (and clearly, neither did his tribe).
  8. S36.E01: Can You Reverse the Curse?

    When they said "this is the Legacy Advantage," I went "uh, there've been two," except I guess Ken played his from Jessica (buggy eyes) correctly on Millennials vs Gen X (one of the few instances of anyone from Millennials vs Gen X playing anything correctly). There were two Jessicas on that season, but one was "Figgy" -- except that strikes me as less egregious than "Gonzalez," because I got the feeling the former was a well-established nickname (or not? She seems to have embraced it). I'm glad they're doing the recaps, because I didn't even remember Andrea not playing her idol on Caramoan (I actually didn't even remember Andrea was on Caramoan, oops).
  9. S36.E01: Can You Reverse the Curse?

    Ironically, just like the OG Game Changers legacy advantage, with Jacob in the Sierra role, and Stephanie in the Sarah role. I don't mind if Michael lies about his age, but his job caption says he's a real estate agent. So, is he actually an 18 year-old real estate agent? Or is that his fake job to go with his fake age? Hey, the gamebot was the second boot! That never happens (or not recently, anyway).
  10. Memorable Products: As Seen on Shark Tank

    I'm always looking for low-calorie, but not artificially sweetened drinks (I drink a lot of flavored seltzer water), so my husband brought me home SAP! seltzer. It ... tastes remarkably similar to flavored seltzer, with a slight maple aftertaste. I liked it the more I drank it, but what I didn't like was it was just as sweet as the flavored seltzer (I like Poland Spring) I had earlier in the day, but this had 40 calories (vs the 0 calorie flavored seltzer). It's also incredibly expensive ($6.99 for 4 cans). I'm glad I tried it, but it will likely be a one-time-only purchase.
  11. I actually really enjoyed that. I had no problem with Rebecca being arrested for the one thing she was justified in doing -- the equivalent of getting Al Capone on a tax evasion. She got away with so much, it was bound to happen. And I didn't think "Nothing is Ever Anyone's Fault" spelled doom for Rebecca and Nathaniel, but reiterated the position of the show that self-actualization is one's happy ending. That's why Greg left when he discovered his, that's why Heather is such a good foil for Rebecca, that's why Paula got happier in her marriage when she got happier in her career. I think Dr. Akopian's position is the show's position -- that Rebecca deserves love. It's not her happy ending, it's a component of it (just like Paula's marriage isn't her happy ending either or Valencia's new happiness with Beth, also connected to a business venture). But Nathaniel is just as broken as she is, and until he fixes himself, he will be no good for her. Since I believe this show has an ultimately optimistic worldview, I could see Rebecca's happy ending being self-actualization, with the implication that she and Nathaniel (or someone else) might be happy together as part of it. But if CW decides to cancel the show, oddly enough, I'll be pretty satisfied with this ending. Rebecca has taken a big step towards self-actualization by admitting guilt for something she did (even if, for the first time ever, it was justified). I can easily imagine a happy ending for her after that.
  12. S33: Adam Klein

    I didn't think this should go anywhere but here, but congratulations to Adam for not only winning this award, but 1) bringing this award with him to Taylor's wedding to film his speech, 2) scripting his speech and 3) enlisting Jay (who gives a pretty competent supporting performance) to help him:
  13. I was going to say, if this was a Survivor winner's edit, it would've been brutal. But last year's winners didn't have such a great edit either. By Edgic metrics (a purely Survivor edit metric, I think) Cody and Jessica had a lot of good second person point of view confessionals (Team Extreme and Indy Car both seemed to like them as people). If I recall correctly, the only negative confessionals they had about them were from ... the long-suffering Saint Brittany of the Nine-Year Ring, so not exactly the most reliable source.
  14. Past Seasons Talk: The Tribe Has Spoken

    Bringing this over from the media topic, as it's centered around a past season: Forgive me if this dead horse topic has been beaten, but refresh my memory as to why Probst hates Michele so much? I wasn't a fan of her win either (I was Team Aubry), but it doesn't seem to be his typical "useless woman beats my Alpha male mancrushes," because the other two options in Kaoh Rong were ... Aubry and Tai? Not exactly Alpha males. In fact, none of his Alpha males even got close to the final 3. So, is there another reason he dislikes Michele? If he had this hate-on for Sarah, I'd get it -- she beat his beloved Culpepper. But this seems like atypical hate to me, if only because the other options weren't exactly strong men.
  15. So, Cody didn't feel the need to propose on national television, without a first place finish and a pre-paid honeymoon? And it didn't take nine years? I'm shocked.