SPOILER WARNING: If you’re not on the 10th episode yet of Survivor Nicaragua, you can stop right here because there’ll be a lot of spoilers on this post.
One of my ultimate favorite "reality" TV series is Survivor. Now, they’re on their 21st season and it seems the series gets better and better every year.
Last season, in Survivor Heroes vs Villains, I’m still a bit pissed that Sandra Diaz won over Parvati Shallow. I love Russel Hantz, but he played a really poor social game so I knew he’s not going to win the million dollars. Parvati deserved the win over anyone else in that season. All I can say is Parvati and Russel’s team-up made Heroes vs Villains the BEST Survivor season ever.
This time, in Survivor Nicaragua, the producer of the show, Mark Burnett, and his team, including my ultimate favorite host Jeff Probst, decided to divide the team into the younger (La Flor) and old tribe (Espada). It was pretty interesting and I knew most of the challenges won’t require too much physical strength, otherwise, the younger tribe could’ve dominated the game entirely.
They’re on their tenth episode now, and the tribes have merged. They call themselves Libertad, coined by Marty Piombo. I so love the name! That’s the only thing I loved about Marty in Survivor. I hated him because of how he treated Jane Bright.
Before I go into details about what I love about this season, I just wanted to tell you that this season of Survivor is one of the best, I believe, when it comes to gameplay. There aren’t too many who are playing under the radar. Everyone seems to be fighting for that chance to go home with the million dollar reward in the end.
The Medallion of Power
I believe they thought of this because they felt that the older tribe needed some kind of advantage in the game. And, just to be fair, they came up with rules so it won’t be too obvious that they were actually doing it for the older tribe.
The Medallion of Power, if you’re not familiar with it yet (if you’re not a Survivor fan, why are you even reading this? *LOL*), whatever tribe possesses it will gain an advantage in challenges. If the tribe chooses to use it in a challenge, the medallion will be handed over to the other tribe.
It was a great concept, but I felt that the Medallion of Power didn’t really had that much impact in the game. The only ones who actually benefited from it was the younger tribe, which I believe wasn’t the intention. I guess that’s why they decided to switch the tribes as soon as possible.
Espada – The Older Tribe
At first, I was rooting for the older tribe. I love the personalities within the tribe, most especially Jimmy Johnson, the oh-so famous NFL coach. I wished he could’ve stayed longer because I love how he managed the tribe and kept everything peaceful. And it’s just too freaking funny that Jimmy T thinks Jimmy J was insecure about him as a leader. Excuse me, no one sees you, Jimmy T, as a leader. He was so freaking irritating and I’m glad they took them out early.
The older tribe, obviously, was at a disadvantage because, well, of their age and their physical strength. But, that’s not what really caused them to lose so much. It was their poor decision-making and stupid moves early on. They should be taking out weak players, not the stronger ones that they feel were going to be threats in the long run. Tsk tsk.
Marty, oh, I hate him so. I hated him as much as I hated Jimmy T. He’s too freaking insecure and he really thought he’s got everything under control. Well, he’s got one thing right though. JANE was the real threat.
Jane Bright is a 56-year old dog trainer and I couldn’t believe her strength physically and mentally in this game. Even after all the disrespect and childish bashing she got from Marty, she never lost her cool. She also dominated in challenges! I cannot believe that she outlasted Chase Rice and Benry, the 2 strongest and most fit guys in the game, during their last immunity challenge where they had to hold on to a rope with knots. And, the last challenge when she already won the immunity necklace intended for the women, she stayed on to beat the men. I absolutely love Jane! I love her accent, her personality, I sure would’ve loved to play the game of Survivor with her. And did I mention she made fire for the older tribe?! She listened to Jeff Probst and practiced before being on the show! I love her! Could she be the winner? If she manages to make it to the finale, I bet everyone would vote for her. Now, who’s going to be dumb enough to bring her to the finale?! Let’s see! *LOL*
Holly Hoffman… ahhhh. What can I say about her, especially after she orchestrated the Brenda Lowe boot (I told you, spoilers!!). I love it when she said during her one-on-one interview in-game that she realized they’ve got 14 days left and she’s still there, and that she can actually go further in the game! She, then, came up to her other tribe members and told them her idea to boot Brenda, who was the one in control of the game at that time. I don’t know why NaOnka Mixon didn’t mention it was Holly’s idea to take out Brenda. I love that Holly, who almost gave up in the first part of this season, is now playing the game of Survivor like she really wants to win it. Go, Holly and Jane!
La Flor – The Younger Tribe
I don’t want to even mention that they dominated a lot of the challenges ’cause it was already given. I hated them for the most part of this season, especially when they come into challenges dancing like fools. But, there were also interesting personalities in their tribe that I’ve grown to really like.
First, there’s Naonka Mixon. Oh, how I hated her when she kept on talking crap about KELLY the disabled castaway, especially when she pushed her aside while she was trying to get a clue to the hidden immunity idol first. Jeff, on his blog, even mentioned how he can’t take Naonka’s attitude. But, I believe that this season won’t be as interesting as it is now if it wasn’t for Naonka. She wasn’t afraid of anyone, not even Brenda who trusted her "a thousand percent". I guess Nay realized she can really go further in the game because almost everyone wants to go with her to the finals. Obviously, the reason behind that is no one in the jury would vote for her to win. Well, let’s see about that.
The other interesting personality in the younger tribe is, of course, Brenda Lowe, who just got axed in the 10th episode. She was too stubborn and proud to scramble to stay in the game. Jeff couldn’t have said it any better – Obviously, Brenda wasn’t playing the game to win it. She wasn’t playing smart. Otherwise, she should’ve tried to sway her tribemates to vote for someone else or at least tried to convince Sash to give her the immunity idol in his possession. Well, all of them voted for Brenda, even her alliances Sash and Chase. I guess it was because they saw that fighting for Brenda was a lost cause ’cause she’s too freaking proud to try to keep herself in the game. Served her right!
I actually loved Brenda before this episode because she was beautiful and Asian. I thought she’d be the next Parvati. But, dang. She’s too full of herself to even make it to the finals. She played a stupid game which resulted to her demise in Survivor. Good riddance, I say.
Brenda’s partner-in-crime Sash proved to be a not-so-smart player at all. Yeah, he was able to convince Marty to give him the immunity idol, but that guy isn’t that wise either so I can’t really give Sash any credits for that. There wasn’t really too much of gameplay there. Marty just lacked the mental ability to play the game and I bet anyone can fool him.
Aside from Naonka, Sash and Brenda, the only other person in the younger tribe who I find interesting is Fabio. Okay, his name isn’t really Fabio, it’s Jud Birza. But, I felt the name Fabio suited him, that’s why he was given that name in the first place. *LOL*
Fabio’s got this animated, naive personality that some people might describe as stupid or dumb. But, I don’t think he’s dumb. In fact, he’s one of the castaways this season who’s actually playing the game. Just watch his interviews where he talks about the game, or even when he talks about strategy with his tribemates. He would jump ship if he needs to. He’s just this vibrant person, except towards Naonka. I love Fabio! I really hope he gets further in the game or even win. He’s the only guy from the younger tribe who I want to win this season.
So far, these are the remaining castaways this season. And I can’t wait for Wednesday to know what Sash would do now that his closest ally Brenda is gone.
Overall, Survivor Nicaragua is turning out to be another success. I hope there’ll be more seasons of Survivor to come, with more exciting and new challenges for the future castaways.
Are you also a fan of Survivor? What do you think of Survivor Nicaragua?! Who are you rooting for this season?