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  1. S36.E05: A Diamond in the Rough

    The sob stories were all production had to work with this episode. No real strategies, no betrayals or backstabbing, no hidden idols to shake up the fearsome fivesome. Just unilateral surrender and begging. What a boring episode.
  2. S36 Stephanie Johnson

    She easily gets people to trust her, to open up to her. She has no problem lying and stabbing in the back. She's good at strategizing, flexible in her relationships, definitely not a liability at challenges. I guess the question is, is she trying too hard as LC says, or can she do all that without drawing too much attention? (I hope the latter because she's one of my favorites at the beginning of the game.)
  3. S36.E01: Can You Reverse the Curse?

    I don't think it mattered much what Jacob did when he came back from Ghost Island. He had already placed the target on his back in three ways: 1) not doing well at the challenges, 2) obviously hunting for the idol, and 3) showing everyone how clever he was to get himself sent to GI. He stood out, in all the wrong ways, and his tribemates pretty well decided they would boot him. Without a real idol, he was doomed. Gonzalez, like Jacob, in large part self-evicted. It keeps amazing me that so many contestants over-play, run off their mouths, and do things that turn their tribes against them. Steph showed how manipulative she is. If she can operate from the background, and not raise alarm bells, I think she could go far. Those are big 'ifs' to maintain over the entire season, as Zeke and many others have shown. I wonder if Donathan is more calculating than he seems? He made it past first tribal, where after the IC he was the overwhelming favorite to get booted. Everyone seems to sympathize with him, even the other tribe. And now he's treated like a hero for diving a little underwater. Very good survival skills, both in this game and perhaps in life as well. Seems like the youngest cast I recall. Is anyone over 40, much less 50?
  4. S35.E13: Million Dollar Night

    Suppose they had been told earlier. How would that have changed things? Not sure it would at all: every time Ben looked vulnerable, he found idols.
  5. S35.E13: Million Dollar Night

    Perhaps this season -- certainly true if the man was Ben -- but Brad won the last four ICs in Game Changers, and watched Sarah easily win the season. Interesting this has happened two seasons in a row. Says to me winning challenges isn't close to the most important thing in winning the votes of jurors, no matter what the gender. I doubt Survivor is rigged. But I also doubt CBS has any liability either way. Pretty sure the contestants sign waivers that, among other things, give CBS total freedom to do whatever it chooses.
  6. S35.E13: Million Dollar Night

    I think F3 is much better. Mainly because it brings winners to finals who otherwise would have become the last jury members. e.g, Yul probably would not have made finals if Cook Islands had been F2. Sandra wouldn't have made finals in HvV. Nat probably wouldn't have made finals in BvW2; neither would Denise in Philippines. Those are off the top of my head: I bet there are others. In short, some of the most highly-thought of Survivor winners would likely not have won with F2. The flip side is the people who probably would have won, if they had played during an F3 season. Rob C is one example. Cirie might be another in Micronesia. Ian might have won Palau: it certainly would have made a far more interesting vote than the one we actually got. Terry almost surely would have won his first season. That's the advantage F3 gives us. More options. I like it better that way.
  7. S35.E13: Million Dollar Night

    My question is, did production come up with the final 'advantage' -- the fire-making twist -- before the season? Or did they throw it in at the last second? It 100% was NOT an advantage for Chrissie, as many have pointed out. I'm trying to think how it could ever be an advantage for the FIC winner. Suppose Ben had won the FIC. He probably chooses to keep Ryan. Devon and Chrissie fight it out at fire-making, with Devon likely (maybe) the winner. Now suppose they don't use this twist. Ben wants to sit next to Ryan, so they probably ally together. They then choose who they want to join them, pull that person into their alliance, and vote out the fourth. My guess is that in this case, Chrissie doesn't make FTC. It seems like the twist mostly adds uncertainty to the finale. Hard for me to see that as an advantage for the FIC winner, who without it, can usually dictate terms. Now it's a roll of the dice, that could have changed many season winners in the past. Going back to Philippines, e.g., Skupin keeps Lisa, and Malcolm might well have made finals, where he was a lock to win. In Second Chances, Kelley W would have had a decent shot So it seems to me the main outcome of the twist is to take control out of the hands of the FIC winner, and cast it to fate (in the form of the fire challenge). I was shocked Chrissie didn't win. Clearly the jury liked Ben a lot more than they liked her.
  8. S03.E09: The Sinnerman

    Didn't Lucifer open a 'gate' to another universe, and send his mother there? If there are other universes, other gods could rule in them. Maybe Sinnerman/Pierce is Mars from one of those universes, who opened a gate into ours, similar to how Lucifer opened the gate for his Mom. Fun to speculate, anyway. (I have not seen any of the comics or read/heard anything about them, i.e. this is all my own spec.)
  9. S03.E09: The Sinnerman

    Another possible (maybe far-fetched) piece of info that could connect Sinnerman to the lieutenant: the lieutenant's name is Marcus Pierce. Marcus is derived from the Roman god of war, Mars. Could the showrunners bring a whole other pantheon of god-like creatures into play, or at least one? Stretching further, 'pierce' is exactly what the supposed Sinnerman did to his eyes in jail.
  10. S03.E09: The Sinnerman

    I agree with you. The writers have made Lucifer too ordinary, too vulnerable (physically and emotionally), too human. I guess that's the point, but even so it's made the show less special.
  11. S03.E09: The Sinnerman

    Here's a speculation: the Sinnerman is actually the new lieutenant. My thinking: * Sinnerman and the lieutenant both arrived on the Las Vegas scene at the same time; * Holding a powerful position in the police department would give the Sinnerman loads of inside info on what the police were up to. That could make him almost impossible to catch; * Capturing the 'fake' Sinnerman, as he did this episode, diverts attention away from the lieutenant. i.e. it sets up a patsy for him. It's also another reason he was so determined to take part in the sting operation with Chloe this episode; * The guy they arrested as Sinnerman took the incredible step of gouging out his own eyes, just so he wouldn't have to face Lucifer. Why would he really care about that, unless he had astonishing info to hide? The that he is not Sinnerman (if that's true) fits that meme perfectly; * The lieutenant is making lots of headway in his plan to seduce Chloe, using a long-game scheme. A great way to hurt Lucifer, who himself is in love with her (the lieutenant knows this, too). * Seems awfully early in the season for the Sinnerman crisis to end. We hardly got to know him. But if the lieutenant is in reality Sinnerman, the story can unfold for the rest of the season, not merely as Lucifer trying to piece the Sinnerman enigma together after the fact, but moving forward, dealing with this astonishingly powerful threat. If any of this right, I suspect the lieutenant/Sinnerman is more than human. That could explain how he survived the bullet in his chest a few episodes ago... how he knows so much about Lucifer... and why he has so much power over crime and his followers (convincing someone to blind himself to protect you requires a helluva lot of power).
  12. S35.E10: Two for the Price of One

    Lauren already is scheming to boot Ben, even though they were/are great friends. She has proven to be a step ahead of the others strategy-wise, so it will surprise me if she doesn't have plans for Devon, who she might not beat, and Ashley, who she probably could, especially if she keeps running the game and turns in a good FTC performance. (The new FTC format should help her in this regard.) I didn't care for her much the first few episodes, but she's now my favorite player, and I think the best this season: a real good combination of strategy, challenge play and low-key social. My one fear is that the others see her as a threat, and team up to boot her.
  13. S35.E09: Fear of the Unknown

    If so, that suggests to me that Mike does not win this season. Otherwise the editors would include that scene as an example of Mike's crafty play.
  14. S35.E08: Playing with the Devil

    I liked Desi and wish she hadn't gotten booted. I don't think she played a good UTR game though. For one, she stood out in the challenges. Of course it's after the fact editing, but as soon as she told Jeff that she was 'temporarily' giving up the immunity necklace, Ryan's eyebrows rose. And then she almost won the second challenge. That helped plant the target on herself, just as so many challenge beasts in the past have done. Also, I don't believe she had good working relationships with anyone outside her immediate alliance (which was basically was just Joe). Ben made the (incredible to me) mistake of telling Dr. Mike that he, Ben, was vulnerable. But the foursome of Mike, Desi, Joe and Cole was not close, and so Desi couldn't take advantage of that. Her tears at the end surprised me, because during the game she didn't seem that emotional. All the players left seem to have at least one strong ability but also at least one fatal flaw. The editing has done a good job of putting up multiple targets, and I have no clue who will come out on top.
  15. S35.E07: Get to Gettin'

    I read that Michael Phelps ate 12,000 calories a day when he was training for the Olympics. He was 6'4" and weighed around 165! So maybe if Cole spends many hours a day in pretty intense exercise, he does consume 8k daily. I definitely believe the Survivor starvation diet is much harder on most young folks, who typically have faster metabolisms and greater food requirements than those in their 50s, 40s or even 30s.