Survivor
Palau Reunion

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Miss Alli: B- | Grade It Now!
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Grace Deferred

Jeff returns to Tom and Gregg for a little more discussion of strategy. Specifically, they both had a lot of game theory in mind, trying to figure out the other person's best move and respond to it before it happened. Gregg explains that he did indeed go down the line of people in camp every night, thinking about what their best move would be. Of course, people on Survivor often don't make their best move, and when they do, it's an accident half the time, and "best move" might include making you look good on television...I mean, who thought Ian's best move was to quit in F3? This is probably as good a strategy as any, but given the vanity, stupidity, and positioning that goes on in this game, it's far from mechanical to apply it. At any rate, this is how Gregg played the game. Jeff moves to Tom, who says that the reason he missed Gregg's approaching flip at F6 was that Gregg has that "always stick to the plan" thing going on, and that he didn't believe Gregg would step out of the F5 alliance they had going on. Interestingly, Tom now seems to understand that Gregg really was after him, not like at the final TC, when he insisted that Ian had led him astray. Again, I wonder if Jeff ever thinks to ask about something like that, rather than to ask everyone how they became a better person as a result of their time on the island, followed by their time at a resort. Jeff tries to get Tom to admit that he ultimately went after Gregg before Gregg could go after him, but Tom insists that, no, he would have waited until F5, had Gregg not been on the move. Which is easy for him to say, of course, because he believed he had the F3 alliance. Again, sticking with the plan, and honoring your word -- both ways that Tom gets to win the money, as it happened. As I've said several times, in terms of Tom's honor analysis, I believe that he believes it, but it's also a bit facile for a person in his position to lecture about the choice between your best interests and the money when he wasn't put to that decision nearly as starkly as others were.

Caryn. She bores me so much. Do we have to talk to her? Any other season, she would have been gone around the fourth or fifth week. Jeff says to her that his sense is that if you can get as far as F5 without any alliances, you should be the most valuable person there, because you're the swing vote. "How did you go home that night?" Jeff asks her incredulously. Caryn says she's not sure what happened, but that she thinks when she tried to hide from Tom and Ian the stuff that was going on with the women, she thinks she was sunk. Well, right. That's how you kill yourself as the swing vote, is you refuse to stop swinging. Having your choice of two alliances is lovely, but it doesn't mean you can have both. Caryn's earrings, incidentally, are really huge and somewhat disproportionate given that she's something of a pinhead, but other than that, she looks much lovelier than she did in Palau.

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Survivor

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