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‘Survivor: Cagayan’, Episode 3: Jeremiah in the middle

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Written by : published Thursday 6th March 2014

‘Survivor: Cagayan’, Episode 3:  Jeremiah in the middle main image

Power is a tricky thing in the game of Survivor.  If you have too much of it, you are an instant threat.  If you float through the game without ever having any, nobody respects you and thus, you lose.  So although it’s a tough thing to master, as Jeremiah found out in tonight’s episode, there is one great thing about being a “swing vote”:  It usually means that it at least isn’t you that’s going home.

In case you missed the episode, be sure to get caught up by watching Survivor: Cagayan Episode 2 , and then be sure to read my weekly Episode Recap before continuing on to this “Bonus Analysis” coverage.

I was pretty hard on last week’s premiere episode.  It’s just tough for me to watch idiotic game play, when the part of the game I love the most is the “strategics” of the game, as Brice would say.  Upon reflection, it was undoubtedly an entertaining start to the season and there are enough interesting players where we hopefully aren’t headed towards one of those forgettable seasons (I’m talking to you, Survivor: Fiji and Survivor: Nicaragua). 

Tonight’s second episode was much better and reminded me of some of the earlier seasons.  The bad weather reminded us of how brutal this game can be and that above even strategic game play, these people really do endure hell to get to the end.  It also had some good old-fashioned lying and scrambling, ending with a Tribal Council where one player was forced to make a ginormous decision that will shape the future of not only his game, but the entire season.

So did Jeremiah make the right call in choosing to align with LJ, Jefra and Alexis?  I believe so.  First of all, this was really a situation where it was three-on-two, with Jeremiah in the middle…so not a true swing vote situation.  If he goes one way, he is actually only forcing a 3-3 tie…which could hurt him more than it helps him.  Add to that, even if his alliance with Morgan and Brice did prevail, he would most likely stick out as the biggest threat of those three players, whereas next to LJ, he may become target number two.

If they go to Tribal Council again, they could vote out Morgan, but Jeremiah may also want to eventually flip the script to blindside LJ, who must be seen as a huge threat by all.  He will either use LJ as a lightning rod and a shield, or he could take advantage of a precise moment in the game to get LJ out of his way.  Morgan has nowhere else to turn to, so an alliance led by Jeremiah – with Jefra, Alexis and Morgan in tow – could be a real possibility and one that could see Jeremiah deep into the game.

The Brains Tribe still seems destined for failure despite their second-place finish.  Spencer is now a distant long-shot to make it far into the game, with no allies and more than a few Tribal Councils to survive before making it to a merge.  Only Tasha seems equipped to go far, but she will be the first target of others in the game once they get a read on the situation.

We still haven’t seen the true dynamics of the Brawn Tribe since they have thus far avoided Tribal Council, but you would have to think that Tony is Public Enemy #1 for most of the others.  It’s very interesting then, that Tony has an Idol and seems to be the most strategically aware player out there thus far.  His alliance with Sarah could be huge for him and don’t forget that he and Trish seemed to have an “outsiders” bond as well.  The question is, does Tony have the in-game awareness to know when and how to use his Idol?  If he can manage to use the Idol to force a huge blindside right from the start, he could find himself in a favorable position.  But we rarely see players like Tony – who are playing the game at 110 miles per hour right out of the gate – make it to the end.

And how about a quick memorial for Brice?  He was an interesting player gone too soon.  I liked Brice, but the make-up of his Tribe was always going to be hard for him.

So are you going to miss Brice?  Did Jeremiah make the right decision in voting him out?  And what do you think of the Cops-R-Us alliance?  Post your comments below!

Follow me on Twitter!  @tomsantilli, and check out my website at tomsantilli.com for more Survivor coverage and my full database of current and archived movie reviews.

About the author SurvivorTom


Tom Santilli is a respected journalist and member of the Detroit Film Critics Society.  He writes several on-line columns, most notably as the Detroit Movie Examiner and the Survivor Examiner for Examiner.com.  He also is a contributor as a Survivor-Insider to TVGeekArmy.com and writes exclusive Survivor in-depth episode analysis for TheTVKing.com. He has been featured on Rob Cesternino's "Rob Has a Podcast" and most recently landed the only exclusive Richard Hatch interview given since his latest legal trouble has surfaced. All of Tom's Survivor coverage as well as movie reviews can be found on his blog the "FilmSurvivor", at FilmSurvivor.com

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