We Review The ‘Survivor: Game Changers’ SN34 EP04 – ‘The Tables Have Turned’
With the Tribal Council Twist dominating this episode I want to evaluate that in some in-depth way, if possible. By judging the validity of the twist, how screwed Malcolm Freberg truly was and whether ‘Fan-Favourite’ Sierra Dawn-Thomas has stepped into the fray as a stealth threat going forward.
Firstly lets jump onto my later point straight off the bat because Sierra has always been a player that has fascinated and infuriated me in equals measures.
In her pre-game content for her first season Worlds Apart she was billed as a Barrel-Jumping-Cowgirl and former model, a profession that speaks to the hard-working ethic that her initial Tribe of Blue Collars were credited as having. With her image of a Cowgirl playing a significant part of her character development earlier on in her season, this ‘tough girl’ persona was also bolstered by her pre-game interview where she claims to have gone days on the road without eating or sleeping and claiming that she’ll be out there “kicking all these guys butts”. So far, so great, until she starts to lose a number of her alliances midway through the game and starts to fall into a pattern of ‘following the lead’, which would be fine if that lead wasn’t the insufferable Dan Foley.
For the most part I get why Sierra-supporters applaud her game the first time around. She sat back and let Dan believe he was in control of the game, it’s a technique which the Queen herself Sandra Diaz-Twine has used to great effect. But unlike Sandra whose confessionals make-up for her underwhelming lack of ‘Big Moves’, Sierra lacks the talent to stand-out in this area. I don’t know if she is just the victim of under editing or if she isn’t giving the Survivor Producers what they want but here-in-lies my big issue with the Sierra character.
It’s all steak, no sizzle. #SurvivorSizzleAnd it’s not as if this girl isn’t sizzling, in Worlds Apart she made it to Final Five on her social game alone, a technique that more than paid off for Survivor Kaoh Rong Winner Michele Fitzgerald. Who like Sierra isn’t given any credit for these subtle moves because we aren’t seeing her take credit for these plays in confessionals.
This week we saw Brad Culpepper engineer a masterful take-down of the opposing team by convincing Tai Trang to use his Hidden Immunity Idol and take-out Malcolm. We know this storyline because Brad told us this but lets pause and take a second to question those two points. Who was the one player clearly shown to have concerns about Malcolm remaining in the game? Sierra. A player who also picked up on Tai’s apprehension to even tell his own Tribe about his Idol until Sierra coaxed it out of him, a move that directly undercut Tai’s own admission to the camera that this Idol was for him and him alone.
Now, I’m for-sure getting ahead of myself here. So lets not jump to calling Sierra the most ‘underrated player ever’ because I don’t even think she can be called that. But what is certain is that she clearly has a bigger part to play in the overall story of Survivor Game Changers (especially with that Legacy Advantage in her back pocket) and it would be a pity that if she has another deep-run and yet we don’t see how she gets herself there.
Is everyone ready? Tissues at the ready … lets talk about Malcolm. *bites fist*
So big surprise Malcolm was my winner pick, as he was for many of you out there I wager. So rest assure you’re in good company when it comes to the sombre after-party feeling that we are all experiencing right now. But to answer the big question on everyone’s lips, was this an unfair twist?No
Is it fair that multiple swaps pre-Merge seem to be the norm now or that people swap to a bad situation like Caleb last week, no … it isn’t fair but its to be expected when you play the game of Survivor, especially a Game Changer season where your guaranteed to have twists-a-plenty. It’s the curve balls that keep the game fresh and make players reinvent their strategy year-on-year. And let’s be real, if JT Thomas hadn’t confided in Brad that Sierra was the target of New Nuku, then Malcolm wouldn’t have gone home.
Thats JT Thomas … your Survivor Tocantins winner. You know the season that Stephen Fishbach got robbed by a bitter jury.
Okay, I might still be salty about Malcolm leaving.
But seriously Malcolm needn’t have gone home. The New Mana Tribe were up in the numbers with a clear target of Hali ‘Lawyer’ Ford (whose Tribal Council ramblings are my new spirit animal right now) with whom Brad and his lackies would never give a hypothetical Idol too. So to say that the twist is to blame is a little results oriented considering if a lesser player had gone home, we’d be calling this the best twist of all time right now.
Simply put. The twist didn’t screw Malcolm, the Nuku Tribe messed up and now we’re all paying the price.
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