I have this love/hate relationship with All Star editions of reality TV shows. The loving part is easy to explain, for once I immediately know who I already like and dislike and I can get into the strategy of the game instead of trying to figure out who is who. Also, it’s fun to see how people react to other contestants from other seasons, I think the first all-star season of Survivor had the first years remarking how much easier the show at least in looking for food and starting fire. “They give you flint?”
On the other hand, there is a unfortunate side to an all-star seasons and it doesn’t matter if it comes on Survivor or Big Brother. Inevitably, whenever my favorites return, I wind up not just liking them less, but not at all. In the previous All-Star of Survivor, Kathy was one of my favorite former players, but sadly she got lined up with Lex too early and managed to give a very disappointing performance. Though it wasn’t technically an All-Stars, I really began to loathe Stephanie when she returned to Survivor. Don’t even get me started on the All-Star season of Big Brother, I can’t believe I ever liked Howie or Janelle .
So I’ve been really worried about who showed up this season on Survivor. Who is going to disappoint me first? Well clearly, Johnny Fairplay didn’t live up to his name, though I’m sure he was rather unrootable, nobody thought he would wind up being the first one voted out either. I also expect many are upset with Ozzy and James who have made it obvious their priority is getting some nookie. Ozzy’s actions doesn’t surprise me, and that’s not counting his previous job experience, I think Ozzy’s great season consisted of him being very good at challenges and food-gathering but being lousy at strategy and actually…thinking. (Yes, I’m still holding his “let’s lose on purpose” decision against him.) I did like James last season, but considering he didn’t think to try to use his immunity idols while he had them, he’s probably not going to fair very well with other people who knew not to waste theirs.
But whom I worried about is Jonathan and Cirie. I really like them. I liked Jonathan mainly because he did two things his season. 1. He dared to speak back to Jeff Probst, something that no previous contestant had done before (and I so loved him for it). 2. He accepted his situation, whether it came about through fate or through being dumb and doing with Candice, as well as he could and didn’t whine or excuse it away. I always appreciated him for that. As for Cirie, well who could guess I’d adore the girl in her first episode who was so scared of leaves? I find her actually the realist person in a reality show that puts people in very non-real situations. So I have watched and waited for them to wind up disappointing me.
And so it happened last week. Both of them, for reasons that weren’t really explained, seemed to kind of sit back and dictate to everyone voting out the person they wanted voted out. I find this kind of positioning, this early in the game, to be very dangerous. I think both of them had good reasons for wanting Parvati or Yau-Man gone but it’s weird how each acted like the fate of the game rested on one of those two leaving that very night.
Cirie especially was making me very nervous. For someone whom I think is fairly smart, she seemed to act like being the swing vote was a position they should herald her for, and that kind of thinking tends to just piss people off and wind up making the swing the target. I worry about next week for her, it’s not like she’s strong in challenges so she’s clearly a weak link in a time where strength and dexterity is essential in keeping the tribe from going to immunity.
Anyway, thanks Survivor, I’m sure I’ll be hating on Cirie and Jonathan before too long. Stupid All-Star Seasons.