Survivors flush plans to flush Tony’s idol: crap

There was something phenomenally unsatisfying about this week’s Survivor Cagayan. Perhaps it’s just that this season has set a really high bar week after week. Perhaps it was the vote, which was an obvious choice but not an exciting one. Perhaps it was the editing, which suggested something exciting was going to happen at Tribal, or which spent a lot of the episode focused on the interpersonal conflict. Perhaps it was Kass and Tasha convincing themselves that Tony is Russell Hantz, which he most certainly is not (if Kass really thinks she can parade him to the end to easily beat him, she’s really misreading what he’s done).

Tasha, one win shy of tying Kelly Wiglesworth’s challenge streak record, was a severe threat at this point, since we’re just two episodes from the finale. Thus, getting rid of her and bailing on the plan to flush Tony’s idols made sense, but it was still unsatisfying.

Also, screw those idols. They’re like Pig-Pen’s cloud, always hanging around but not really doing anything.

Woo was the bright spot–or more specifically, his transition from performing joyously for kids in village to his empty, blank stares while Kass and Spencer tried to woo him. But just when I thought his noncommittal expression was funny, he tried to lie to Tony about what kind of strategy talk took place during the reward, and he choked harder than someone choking hard.

But oh, that Tony. Although Trish was the first to raise the possibility that Woo might have been wooed, Tony basically recapped exactly what happened on the reward to Woo, which was more impressive than David Blaine. (Then again, splinters are frequently more impressive than David Blaine.) Woo denied everything, but I’d guess Tony saw through that. Late in the episode, Tony read Tasha’s calmness as an indication that there was a plan afoot, which we thought there was, at least until the votes proved otherwise.

Tony knows his shit, but also shits all over himself, as he did when he admitted he had the Tyler Perry idol, following it with childish backpeddling (No! I’m not showing it to you if I don’t want to, nanny nanny boo boo!).

Though Kass is more composed, she’s become every bit as abrasive and reactionary, constantly picking fights with Tony for no real reason–or at least, not one that we were privilege to, as we were earlier this season when Spencer talked about intentionally trying to bait Tony. Their fighting was only interesting insomuch as it’s interesting to watch two people who are misreading each other so severely there’s no choice but to laugh, because they’re both so wrong.

Kass can be forgiven for thinking Tony was lying about his idol and lying about talking about her, since, as Spencer said, “Tony is lying to everyone all the time out here, and he’s good at it.” Offering evidence that supports a potential Tony win, Spencer said, “he’s playing harder than anyone” and “he’s very very dangerous.”

Yes.

Review: Married at First Sight

Marriage At First Sight

In an era of Tinder and Grindr, instant acceptance or dismissal of a potential partner, or instant sex with another body, Married at First Sight offers the thrill of watching strangers deal with the very basics of relationships.

Beyond the headline-grabbing premise, the series has turned out to be a stripped-down, authentic exploration of something very interesting. Read the full review.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.