The votes have been read. Reality has settled in. The worst has happened: another blindside has rocked Survivor: Millennials vs. Gen X. But while the other blindsides have also made my jaw drop to the ground (this seems to be the season for it), this latest one has left a little bitter taste in my mouth. It could be due to my super fan status or the joy to support players who rise to the occasion–Tribal Council is now a bittersweet moment.
Michaela, the brash yet strategic castaway, has been blindsided by the Ikabula tribe and sent packing. After starting the game with sarcasm and lower than expected chances to win (I early guessed Figgy’s alliance would vote her out), Michaela grew to take on a leadership role and perform stronger in challenges. All of that is no longer applicable; she’s now voted out. This marks yet another Tribal Council where the castaways have turned against their former tribes and voted off someone who potentially could’ve been a number for them. This happened during CeCe’s vote off. This also happened during Figgy’s vote. And now, Michaela has joined the list.
In a typical season of Survivor, the original tribes would try to keep as many numbers in tact as possible heading into the merge. Having the majority equates to power! Power is an essential resource to surviving a few weeks in the game and hopefully making it to Top 6. This season, however, is breaking down those barriers and merely targeting and turning against whomever. I’ve gone back and forth on Michaela’s vote off: she IS a big threat, and someone who could’ve posed a challenge to some of the weaker players down the line. However, as the Millennials are dwindling in numbers and the merge is coming up, having that extra stronger player around would’ve been a good idea. The scales keep moving back and forth.
Her vote off also poses an interesting question: is this the beginning of the end for the Millennials tribe? Whereas the Gen X tribe members seem to be more intact (barring CeCe’s elimination), the others look more cohesive. Ken and Jessica banded together and might turn on Adam, Chris and David need to rely on each other, and Bret and Sunday are not turning against each other for fear of elimination. All six of the remaining Gen X-ers are, for the most part, the minority numbers in their new tribes, but they look stronger. The Millennials, on the other hand, are floundering.
Adam and Zeke have opted for alliances with the Gen X-ers, Will isn’t taking the lead on anything, Jay proudly turned against Michaela, Taylor is on his own now that Figgy is gone, and Michelle and Hannah are clueless to what is going on. Their tribe started in the lead but, for anyone taking bets, they now have the biggest hill to climb to attain some tribe unity. And they need to seriously hope that come the merge, the Gen X-ers don’t automatically band together to Pagong them all out of the game. It’s happened before and it could happen again. They still have a chance since they currently outnumber the Gen X-ers by one person. Though, that could still dwindle based on this trend.
In terms of the challenges, I love a good slingshot challenge. Anything that requires aim and precision keeps these players on their toes. It takes a keen eye to really hit the target and having it as part of an obstacle course of sorts adds some difficulty. The reward challenge was simply another rolling ball game–it was too similar to the immunity challenge from the last episode. Hopefully the rolling ball won’t be the new “puzzle” element added to these games. I would love a different type of challenge for these castaways to play, something with matching images, a large maze or a head-to-head fighting competition. You know… a bit of drama.
Finally, why is Bret lying about his job? I will never understand this aspect of reality TV shows, like in Survivor or Big Brother. No one is judging or holding a job against someone as a reason to target them. If someone is super wealthy, THAT could pose an issue when making a case to win a million dollars. However, the mere fact of lying could hurt him in the end. Nobody likes someone they can’t trust–he should own up to it before it’s too late.