Archive for November, 2012

‘Survivor’ Hall of Fame 2012 Ballot – ‘Boston’ Rob Mariano

November 30, 2012

2010 'Survivor' Hall of Fame Inductee 'Boston' Rob Mariano (CBS)

The “Survivor” Hall of Fame is proud to have 2010 inductee ‘Boston’ Rob Mariano as a member of the Executive Voting Committee. As a member of this exclusive committee, Rob (along with Host Jeff Probst, Challenge Producer John Kirhoffer, and other “Survivor” luminaries) has accepted an awesome responsibility. The committee’s votes will make up 50% of the final tally for entry into the prestigious Class of 2012. The other 50% will come from “Survivor” fans like you.

Note: Polls closed November 30, 2012 at 5 pm ET. Be sure to come back Monday, December 10, 2012 to meet the first member of the Class of 2012.

Set Your DVR to Record “Survivor: Philippines”

Rob Mariano’s 2012 Hall of Fame Ballot

Stephenie LaGrossa – (“Survivor: Palau,” “Survivor: Guatemala,” and “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains”): One of the toughest chicks to ever play the game. Determined and a fierce competitor. I love Stephenie’s style, attitude, and approach to “Survivor.”

Amanda Kimmel – (“Survivor: China,” “Survivor: Fans vs. Favorites,” and “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains”): Back-to-back seasons getting to the end can’t be overlooked. Amanda is a great strategic, social,l and physical player.  Her approach to the game is subtle yet very effective for her. She knows who she is, what her strengths are, and how to implement them to get her deep and give herself a shot.

Amber Mariano – (“Survivor: The Australian Outback” and “Survivor: All-Stars”): A lot of people often overlook Amber’s win in “Survivor: All-Stars” but she was right there with me the entire way making decisions about strategy and physically she came up huge winning an individual immunity when we needed it most at the final five. Socially she knew enough to let me take the bullets so that she would get the votes in the end… Okay, let’s be honest here, the fact that she has been an amazing wife for the past seven and a half years, and an incredible mother to our three beautiful daughters may have influenced my vote a little. But whatever, it’s my vote right?!

I gotta throw out an honorable mention to Rudy Boesch. I said it last time and I’ll say it again; Rudy is iconic to “Survivor” with his one liners and demeanor that originally brought the humor to the show for a lot of us. I honestly believe we should have a special place in the Hall of Fame reserved just for him!

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter @gordonholmes

Advertisements

‘Survivor’ Hall of Fame 2012 Ballot – Parvati Shallow

November 29, 2012

2010 'Survivor' Hall of Fame Inductee Parvati Shallow (CBS)

The “Survivor” Hall of Fame is proud to have 2010 inductee Parvati Shallow as a member of the Executive Voting Committee. As a member of this exclusive committee, Parvati (along with Host Jeff Probst, Challenge Producer John Kirhoffer, and other “Survivor” luminaries) has accepted an awesome responsibility. The committee’s votes will make up 50% of the final tally for entry into the prestigious Class of 2012. The other 50% will come from “Survivor” fans like you.

Note: Polls closed November 30, 2012 at 5 pm ET. Be sure to come back Monday, December 10, 2012 to meet the first member of the Class of 2012.

Set Your DVR to Record “Survivor: Philippines”

Parvati Shallow’s 2012 Hall of Fame Ballot

Amanda Kimmel – (“Survivor: China,” “Survivor: Fans vs. Favorites,” and “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villians”): My partner in crime in “Survivor: Micronesia.” Amanda is smart, knows how to work the social angle, and is a challenge dominator. Although she didn’t win, the girl made it to back-to-back finals in China and Micronesia and went on to give me a run for my money in “Heroes vs. Villains.” She deserves a spot in the Hall of Fame.

Jerri Manthey – (“Survivor: The Australian Outback,” “Survivor: All-Stars,” and “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villians”): The original black widow, Jerri became notorious as the bad girl of “Survivor” after Australia aired. She was also one of the few returning contestants to adapt her gameplay. In “Heroes vs. Villians”, she played a cool-headed game, excelled at challenges, and stayed true to her alliance.

Ethan Zohn – (“Survivor: Africa” and “Survivor: All-Stars”): He’s probably the only guy to ever win “Survivor” by playing nice. Since winning Africa he’s devoted his life to developing his charity, Grassroot Soccer and is a Hall of Famer in my book.

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter @gordonholmes

‘Survivor’ Castaway Jonathan Penner: ‘I Made a Game-Changing Mistake’

November 29, 2012

Jonathan Penner (CBS)

Sometimes it’s hard to pinpoint exactly where someone’s game goes wrong. In Jonathan Penner’s case it’s pretty easy. One second he’s deciding against officially aligning with Skupin and Lisa, the next they’re sending him to the jury.

I spoke to Jonathan the morning after his elimination and had a chance to learn about what he was thinking when he turned down what seemed like a sure trip to the final four, why nobody tried to outbid Abi at the auction, and how his time in the Philippines will affect his “Survivor” legacy.

Set Your DVR to Record “Survivor: Philippines”

Gordon Holmes: I’m sure you’re going to hear this a lot today, but it seems like the moment that cost you the game was when you chose not to align with Michael and Lisa. If you’d made that move, do you think that alliance would have stuck together?
Jonathan Penner: Mm…yeah, I guess I do. But, I certainly don’t trust Malcolm and Denise to not do everything in their power to stay in the game. I mean, Malcolm at this point does have an idol. Obviously the mistake I made was not being prepared to lie to Lisa and say I was prepared to commit to her and Skupin. I’d never lied to her, or either of them and I wasn’t prepared to lie to them…yet. They showed a little of this where I said, “I think the six of us can have a good time playing at a final six level,” and I honestly wasn’t thinking that Skupin or Lisa had any reason to stop working with me. I didn’t know that they needed my word. It made sense at the time, but they had other people waiting in the woods. But, I don’t know why they didn’t say, “Let’s take out Carter.”  I guess because they saw me as a big enough threat. I’m still not sure why.
Holmes: Well, with all of these exit interviews, I think across the board everyone was impressed with how you played the game and managed to stay alive with a target on your back. So, it wasn’t a shock to me that they went with you over Carter.

Holmes: I was trying to figure out what was behind your decision not to align with Skup and Lisa and I thought maybe you were trying to find a way to get to the end with Abi.
Penner: No. If Abi gets to the end it’d take fantastic play on her part and she’d really deserve the win.
Holmes: I just picture her snapping and cursing out the jury over some perceived slight.
Penner:  There’s a huge argument to be made if Abi makes it to the end that she’d be the player of the game.

Holmes: Last night you said that Skup and Lisa couldn’t beat Malcolm and Denise. Did you mean that or was that strategy?
Penner: Well, I did mean it. The lie that I did tell them was that I thought they might have a chance of beating me. I don’t think they could beat me. My way of thinking was, “You guys have screwed yourself with the jury.  You can get to the end, but who the hell is going to vote for you?” They never thought about that. I told them straight to their faces that I didn’t think they could win and they get to make the choice of who does. As I walked out I said, “You have just given a million dollars to an unemployed bartender or a sex therapist. I hope that’s what you wanted to do.” Now, obviously it might play out differently, but that’s what I believed. And I was cross with them for not giving me the million dollars. But that’s the choice they made based on me not making a commitment to them.

Holmes: Before the auction, was there any talk of someone holding back their money to outbid Abi for the advantage?
Penner: I’ve heard that there’s usually an advantage. In “One World” there was an identical advantage, but we were on the island when that was on the air. I never saw that.

Holmes: Just to rewind a little bit, you voted for Abi in the vote that sent Jeff Kent home. If you’d voted for Pete, it would have forced a tie. What was your reasoning behind that vote?
Penner: A couple of reasons; I was playing for the jury. I knew that I was walking home with either Jeff or Pete. This way I could walk home with them and say, “I didn’t vote for you.” And then look at someone on the jury and say, “I didn’t vote for you.” Both would have been true. I was happy to stir the pot with Abi. I was supposed to be in a short-term alliance with them because I thought I was going home until that day. I was willing to work with anybody. When Abi and Pete said, “Let’s get rid of Jeff” I thought I’d do that if it keeps me alive. I didn’t want to vote for Jeff. Also, I thought Skupin was with us, so I thought we had the votes to get Pete and my vote would be extraneous. Unfortunately, Skupin did not vote the way he’d indicated that he was going to vote.

Holmes: Alright, let’s do some word association. We’ll start with Carter…
Penner: A headless Thompson gunner.
Holmes: Abi?
Penner: Marie Gomes.
Holmes: Skupin?
Penner: Ice Cream.
Holmes: Malcolm?
Penner: McDowell.
Holmes: Denise?
Penner: Denies.
Holmes: And Lisa?
Penner: Lisa Lisa and the Cult Jam!
Holmes: You’re killing me, Penner.

Holmes: As a returning player, you have to come in with different expectations. You hope your stock rises. On one hand you have “Boston” Rob Mariano who barely makes it to “All-Stars” then turns that into an impressive run. On the other, you’re Russell Swan who just had a disastrous turn this season. How do you think this season will impact your legacy?
Penner: Well…I hope it’s good. I can’t really say I think much about my legacy. How does it affect my legacy? I played a good game, I played a much better game than I had played before. I played a lot nicer. People aren’t coming out saying I’m an (expletive deleted). (Laughing) Not that I’m concerned about that. It’s hard making a mistake and knowing that ten million people are seeing it to. It seemed like the right thing to do at the time. With the cold light of a TV blaring, it’s clear that it wasn’t the right thing to do. But, my legacy? What do you think?
Holmes:  I think people have short memories when it comes to “Survivor.” I think there were people who saw you as more of a personality than a player. I think this was a great reminder for them. I think there are people who were brought to the show during the Hantz era who might not even know who you are. I think this season was a great introduction to them of what you’re capable of in the game. Your neck was on the line since day one and they couldn’t kill you.
Penner: Well thanks, I love to play it. I did things that I’d dreamed of doing. I won individual immunity, I found an idol, I played it correctly. I talked my way out of some jams, I solved some cool puzzles. And, I laughed my ass off a lot of the time, we really had fun out there.  I have no regrets other than that I made a game-changing mistake. I can’t tell you what would have happened. Could I have won? I think I would have had a very good chance against any of the final six.

Holmes: During the launch on day one, you swam quite a distance and managed to coax a chicken off of the boat. Were you bummed out that that didn’t make the episode?
Penner: Yeah it bummed me out! I worked my ass off to get that chicken!

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

‘Survivor: Philippines’ Recap: Abi or Not Abi?

November 28, 2012

'Survivor: Philippines' (CBS)

XFinityTV is blowing up their coverage of “Survivor: Philippines.” Every Tuesday I’ll be squaring off against “Survivor: One World” favorite Kat Edorsson in this season’s Power Rankings challenge. Every Wednesday briefly after the show we’ll have a full episode recap and every Thursday we’ll have an interview with the latest eliminated player.  Follow me on Twitter (@gordonholmes) for all the updates!

Set Your DVR to Record “Survivor: Philippines”

Last Week: Skupin and Lisa wanted to align with Kalabaw, but Penner got cold feet, Abi went into great detail about everything she had to eat, Malcolm and Denise joined a final four that will be tough to beat, and poor engineer/model Pete met a bitter defeat.

39 Days, 18 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Let’s take a look at the tribe as it currently stands…

The Dangrayne Tribe (wearing black)

Abi-Maria – Business Student, 32
Carter – Track Coach, 24
Denise – Sex Therapist, 41
Lisa – Former ‘Facts of Life’ Star, 49
Malcolm – Bartender, 25
Michael – Professional Speaker, Author, and Coach, 50
Penner – Writer, 50

The fun starts off the morning after Tribal and Abi is not thrilled with how she was treated. She browbeats Michael, which fortunately doesn’t leave him bruised or bleeding.

Denise lays out an early favorite for Understatement of the Night by saying that Abi will be the next to go home. However, if Abi can win immunit, it’ll be Penner. Gah…Penner’s gonna regret not joining up with Skup and Lisa.

During a trip to get tree mail, Malcolm lets Abi know that he feels bad about how rough Tribal was for her. I’m sure he feels that way, but it’s good strategy too.

Reward Challenge Time: Food auction, baby! Everyone has $500 and they’re not allowed to share food or money.

OK, before we get into this, if they’re serious about getting rid of Abi, they won’t let her buy the advantage. Most of the remaining players are just too smart for that.

Pancakes and bacon go to Denise for all of her money. What did I just say about Abi and the challenge clue?

Skupin immediately bids $500 on a plate of wine and cheese. What did I say?!

Malcolm wins iced coffee and donuts for $200.

Fun Fact: “Survivor” catering’s iced coffee is amazing. Amazing.

A mystery item goes to Penner for $100. It ends up being fried chicken and French fries.

A second mystery item goes to Carter for $200. It’s a loaded baked potato. Probst gives him the opportunity to trade it for rice and beans for the tribe. He makes the trade.

A third mystery item goes Lisa for $320. It’s a sandwich. It’s also impossible for anyone to outbit Abi now.

And…the next item is the clue. Abi immediately bids all of her money and wins. That sound you hear in the distance is a “Survivor” recapper banging his head against a coffee table in Philadelphia.

Carter wins the final mystery item for $200. It is revealed to be veal shanks for the entire tribe. The catch is they have a minute to eat them and they can’t use any silverware. The eating that follows is pretty gross.

Back at camp, Abi is looking for an apology from Penner for destroying her at Tribal. Penner tries to diffuse the situation, but Abi is being less than friendly. However, they do end things with a hug, so good on her for remembering that she’s going to need friends at some point.

Abi sneaks out to read her auction advantage. It turns out she’ll get a free pass to the final round of the immunity challenge.

Not content to just have a one-in-three chance of winning the next challenge, she comes up with a secondary plan. Abi starts sneaking around as if she was really given a clue to an idol. I like this. Although, at the challenge it’ll be obvious that the advantage wasn’t an immunity idol clue when she zips ahead to the final round.

Immunity Challenge Time: Players will be attached to a rope and have to maneuver around a hitching rail. The first five to the end will advance. Then, they’ll have to maneuver around a series of bamboo poles. The first two to the end will advance. Then, the final two along with Abi will have to work their way around a multi-level structure. First one through wins immunity.

Also, they’ll have to answer trivia questions. If they get them wrong, they’ll have to carry around 5% of their body weight. That’s kind of random and weird.

Probst tells Abi to read her advantage and she LIES and says that there are two messages and that she only has to read the one about the immunity challenge. She then TEARS THE NOTE TO PIECES! Hate her all day and all night, but she’s trying.

Round One: Lisa and Denise both get the trivia wrong, so they’ll have to carry extra weight. It doesn’t matter to Denise though as she’s the first one through. She’s followed by Carter, Skup, Malcolm, and Penner.

Round Two: Carter, Skup, and Denise both missed the second trivia question. Carter and Penner advance to the final round.

Skup doesn’t think Abi can win because she can’t climb.

Round Three: They aren’t attached to a rope this time; instead they’ll have to untie several rope barricades. Apparently Abi’s tiny fingers are perfect for this task because she zips through it and wins immunity.

Well, now things are interesting.

Afterwards, Malcolm’s psyched because he doesn’t view Abi as a threat and this is an opportunity to send Penner packing.

On the other hand, Lisa’s having doubts because she still feels connected to Carter and Penner. She talks to Penner and tells him that she wanted to align with him, but he turned it down. She then confirms that he’s next on the chopping block.

When Penner asks what he should do about it, her only response is that he should go work his magic. Well, Penner has proven he has some magic this season.

That night at Tribal Council, Abi admits that it was her plan to save her money for the clue. Really? That happens at like EVERY auction. (Sorry for the overuse of caps tonight.)

Penner then outs the final four alliance. He’s annoyed because he thought they were all working toward a common goal.

Malcolm calls him on this, saying they turned on him because he wouldn’t align with them.

Penner makes a direct appeal to Lisa and Skupin saying that they’ll lose in the end if they align with Malcolm and Denise.

Abi must be loving this.

Probst asks Lisa if she can compare this situation to something in her real life. She says she can, but it’s too personal to talk about. She then goes all Sugar on them with some waterworks.

Also, Carter was there.

Voting Time: Abi votes for Denise, Penner votes for Denise (and makes a point to say it loud enough so everyone can hear it), and the rest of the votes are not shown.

J-Pro tallies and returns. He asks if anyone would like to play an idol…and nobody does.

We’ve got two votes for Denise, two votes for Penner, one vote for Denise, one vote for Penner and the twelfth person to leave “Survivor: Philippines” and the fifth member of the jury is…Penner.

Verdict: This season is on fire. Easily the best since “Heroes vs. Villains.”

Shame about Penner though. It’s rare that you get such a perfect portrayal of where someone’s game went wrong.

Who’s Going to Win: Now that Abi’s advantage clue has given her seven immunity idols, I don’t see how she can lose.

Power Rankings Results: Kat’s still cutting down on my monster lead. She had Penner in spot six while I had him in spot five. So, the current score is Team Kat: 122, Team Awesome Thunder: 123.

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

‘Survivor’ Hall of Fame 2012 Ballot – Challenge Producer John Kirhoffer

November 28, 2012

'Survivor' Challenge Producer John Kirhoffer - (CBS)

As a member of the Executive Voting Committee, “Survivor” Challenge Producer John Kirhoffer (along with Host Jeff Probst, Producer Jesse Jensen, and other “Survivor” luminaries) has an awesome responsibility. The committee’s votes will make up 50% of the final tally for entry into the prestigious Class of 2012. The other 50% will come from “Survivor” fans like you.

Note: Polls closed November 30, 2012 at 5 pm ET.

Set Your DVR to Record “Survivor: Philippines”

John Kirhoffer is the brain behind some of  “Survivor’s” most difficult and exciting challenges. After 12 years and more than 25 seasons, John continues to design and execute innovative challenges that never fail to impress. His commitment, attention to detail and dedication to creating some of the best challenges on TV are a critical part of “Survivor’s” continued success. With hundreds of challenges on his resume, he credits “Boulder Dash” from season three (Africa) and “Vertical Maze” from season nine (Vanuatu – Islands of Fire) among his favorites.

John Kirhoffer’s 2012 “Survivor” Hall of Fame Ballot

Ethan Zohn – (“Survivor: Africa” and “Survivor: All-Stars”): I feel Ethan deserves an actual statue in our virtual Hall of Fame. Having played only twice, he has once won the game of “Survivor,” and has certainly won the game of life. Ethan is one of the most deserving winners in “Survivor” history, through exceptional athleticism, genuine compassion, and a sincerity of heart he was able to capture the hearts of America and title of Sole Survivor in season three.  Ethan became a true role model for kids, passionately committed to his Grassroots Soccer program, then battled cancer valiantly, with an unbreakable spirit which truly gives a heroic connotation to the word “Survivor.”

Benjamin “Coach” Wade – (“Survivor: Tocantins,” “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains,” and “Survivor: South Pacific”): Once again for me, Coach is a “Survivor” classic! He had three seasons; from a self-absorbed narcissist with epic and often bizarre tales of adventure and delusions of grandeur, to the more humbled, genuinely sympathetic and mentoring soul forced to compromise his morality to compete in a game designed to conflict with ones values…I think he may have come out of his “Survivor” tenure with well more than a million dollars worth of spirituality, self-awareness, and actual honor.

Amanda Kimmel – (“Survivor: China,” “Survivor: Fans vs. Favorites,” and “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains”): And also ONCE AGAIN for me…Amanda deserves a spot in our Hall of Fame. Many of us discounted her from early episodes in China as the beautiful, dingy, pageant queen whose crowning achievement was losing her top in a mud challenge and proclaiming “My mom is going to kill me!” Then she aligned with Todd Herzog, and together choreographed an amazing strategy that got her to the end, only to claim second place. And then in “Fans vs. Favorites” she became one of the architects of the women’s alliance with another of my most memorable lines in “Survivor” history. After an incredible scene of digging a mile of ditches in the sand on Exile Island she showed up with an EMMY-quality performance of resigned dejection at Tribal Council when at the clutch moment she proclaimed, “When I said I didn’t have the hidden Immunity Idol I didn’t…” She then strutted over to Jeff and continued, “BUT I HAVE IT!!” She made it again to the final two…and alas, again fell short against Parvati.

Be sure to come back Monday, December 10, 2012 to meet the first member of the Class of 2012!

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter @gordonholmes

‘Survivor’ Hall of Fame 2012 Ballot – Sandra Diaz-Twine

November 27, 2012

2010 'Survivor' Hall of Fame Inductee Sandra Diaz-Twine (CBS)

The “Survivor” Hall of Fame is proud to have 2010 inductee Sandra Diaz-Twine as a member of the Executive Voting Committee. As a member of this exclusive committee, Sandra (along with Host Jeff Probst, Challenge Producer John Kirhoffer, and other “Survivor” luminaries) has accepted an awesome responsibility. The committee’s votes will make up 50% of the final tally for entry into the prestigious Class of 2012. The other 50% will come from “Survivor” fans like you.

Note: Polls closed November 30, 2012 at 5 pm ET.

Set Your DVR to Record “Survivor: Philippines”

Sandra Diaz-Twine’s 2012 Hall of Fame Ballot

Todd Herzog – (“Survivor: China”): He took early control of his tribe and his social game made his tribe trust him. He was instrumental in blindsiding James, Frosti, and Jean-Robert, making James the dumbest player at the time, going home with two idols in his possession. Lastly, he had one of the best Tribal Council’s where he admitted to lying and was still awarded the million dollars.

Rob Cesternino – (“Survivor: The Amazon” and “Survivor: All-Stars”): He was an aggressive strategic player who didn’t believe in loyalty. He was effective at switching alliances to keep himself in the game, and always had several deals on the table. He went with whatever benefited him and kept him alive in the game.

Jerri Manthey – (“Survivor: The Australian Outback,” “Survivor: All-Stars,” and “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains”): Jerry grew as a player and a person while playing “Survivor.” She made the final four on her 3rd attempt at the game. Even as a Villain she used her negatives and made them positives. As a Villain she was a vital asset in the tribe and she had solid relationships with every member. She made them feel like part of the team.

Come back Monday, December 10, 2012 to meet the first member of the Class of 2012!

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter @gordonholmes

‘Survivor: Philippines’ Power Rankings: Round Ten

November 27, 2012

'Survivor: Philippines' (CBS)

XFinityTV is blowing up their coverage of “Survivor: Philippines.” Every Tuesday I’ll be squaring off against “Survivor: One World” favorite Kat Edorsson in this season’s Power Rankings challenge. Every Wednesday briefly after the show we’ll have a full episode recap and every Thursday we’ll have an interview with the latest eliminated player.  Follow me on Twitter (@gordonholmes) for all the updates!

The Rules: Each week Kat and Gordon will create separate Power Rankings. The ranking of the person who is voted out of the next episode will determine the number of points the two players will earn. For example, if Malcolm is voted out this week, Kat will receive 2 points and Gordon will receive 1 point. The person with the most points at the end of the season will be crowned the ‘Survivor: Philippines’ Power Rankings champion!

Last Week: Kat and I both thought Pete was a dead engineer/model walking, so we both had him in the eighth slot. So, the current score is Team Kat: 116, Team Awesome Thunder: 118.

Set Your DVR to Record ‘Survivor: Philippines

Kat’s Current Score: 116

Any advice for Kat? Drop her a line on Twitter: @KatEdorsson

Gordon’s Current Score: 118

Any advice for Gordon? Drop him a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

 1. Denise: I still believe Denise has a great chance of being our sole Survivor. During Tribal Council last week Denise’s true colors were shown, and her strength is being able to keep her composure. I remember our first Tribal Council in “One World” when Alicia and Christina went at it. LOL. Talk about bad communication between women. It’s extremely important to keep your composure at Tribal, and let others dig their own grave.
 1. Malcolm: My boy’s back on top. He’s got an idol. He’s got a final-four alliance. He’s got a solid shot at winning any individual immunity challenges that come his way. Could this be the year I break my all-of-Gordon’s-pre-game-predictions-suck curse? All of my fingers are crossed. I also went out and bought a rabbit’s foot that’s wearing a horseshoe.
 2. Malcolm: Malcolm still has the idol and it looks like our dynamic duo is calling the shots as to who stays and who goes. This is going to get really intense because every player in this game is a strong competitor in one way or another. Whether it is social game or strength everyone is playing, which makes things so fascinating to watch! 
 2. Denise: Denise is going to win this, isn’t she? She’s such a good under-the-radar player that Pete didn’t even see her talking to anyone. The only juror or potential juror that really has a problem with her is Abi, and Abi has a problem with everyone. Right now, the only thing that can really count against her is that they could say she didn’t make any big moves. She needs to take a page from the Sophie Clarke playbook and start being more confrontational at Tribal. Not too much though, you don’t want to lose votes.
 3. Lisa: Lisa is a perfect player to take to the final three, she has a great chance of winning and I enjoy watching her play every week. This woman has a beautiful soul and she reminds me of Dawn from South Pacific and Holly from Nicaragua; laid back personalities with a tendency to watch the game play out in front of them.  3. Lisa: Kudos to the former “Facts of Life” star. She made her way to the end and was the one who got to make the key decision as to who the dominant alliance was going to be. Penner turned down her original decision, but that’s going to hurt him more than it hurts her. Best of all for Lisa, she was able to get out of the Tandang alliance without really stabbing anyone in the back. Abi let her off the hook with her mistrust and bad behavior at Tribal.

  4. Michael: Skupin is definitely an all-star player right now. Someone give this man a pat on the back!!! Can someone remind me how old he is? Doing work on these kids! Skupin is still low on my totem pole because he is obviously a great competitor and to keep his safety he needs to continue to win.
 4. Michael: I’m psyched to see Skupin locked in a final-four alliance, but I’m worried that he has rubbed a lot of jurors the wrong way. He turned on RC, Pete, and Jeff Kent. And, Artis seems to reeeeeeally hate him. Of the new alliance, Skup’s definitely the one I’d want sitting next to me.

  5. Carter: I’m so proud of this kid. I believe he deserves to stay longer in this game then some of his other tribemates. Take this as a compliment, TRUST ME, I understand your pain. If you don’t win immunity I think you will be the first to go. This is where you need to turn up the HEAT. I battled against Kim Spradlin (winner of “One World”) for 1 hour and 45 minutes to win immunity until my arms broke off… to only receive second place, a high five, and a boot to the jury.

 5. Penner: Oh man…Penner… I have a feeling you’re going to be reliving that moment where you turned down Lisa and Skupin for a long time. Worst of all, I can’t figure out your angle. Rob Cesternino thinks it was because you don’t want to be seen as a schemer. The best I could come up with is you’re trying to somehow maneuver getting to the end with Abi. Either way, I think that was your shot at the million and you didn’t take it.
 6. Penner: Here`s my thought; if Denise and Malcolm believe only the strongest should survive in this game then Skupin and Penner will be taken to the end with no question. Denise clearly stated she only wanted to play this game with integrity and she wanted to play this game with a person who deserves to be there. Penner has been target enemy #1 and if our returnee players keep winning individual immunity they could possibly sail to victory.
 6. Carter: You’re not in the dominant alliance and you are a challenge machine. I’m thinking if Abi somehow manages to squeak out an immunity win this week you’re a goner. Or worse, the others could realize that they can take out Abi at any time and getting you out is a bigger priority. Either way, it’s trouble for Mr. Carter.
 7. Abi-Maria: I’m hoping she turns on the heat. It’s too bad she can’t still play the idol and buy one more Tribal Council to turn this game around. But, she’s also an easy final-three take…

  7. Abi-Maria: Yes, I’m a sucker.  I felt bad for Abi at the last Tribal Council. I always get a kick out of people that embrace the villain role, but feel a little sad when someone is bummed out when they realize they’re not very well liked. I mean, why else would she brag about the reward? She wasn’t intentionally trying to hurt her game. Anywho, looks like the ‘Brazilian Time Bomb’s’ time is ticking to a close unless someone makes a bold move to take her to the end. And even then she’d be playing for third (or second?) place.

‘Survivor: Philippines’ Castaway Pete: Abi Is a ‘Brazilian Time Bomb’

November 26, 2012

Pete Yurkowski (CBS)

“Oh Johnny, did you back the wrong horse.” – Dr. Peter Venkman: “Ghostbusters 2”

Sometimes teaming up with a troublemaker is good for business. If you’re Rob Mariano and you buddy up with Philip Sheppard or if you’re Natalie White and you side with Russell Hantz, it can make you a millionaire. If you’re Pete Yurkowski teaming up with Abi-Maria Gomes it can mean an early trip to the jury.

I spoke with Pete after his elimination and had a chance to find out about his real alliance, if he trusted Malcolm or not, and exactly what happened to Michael Skupin’s shoulder...

Set Your DVR to Record “Survivor: Philippines”

Gordon Holmes: Morning, Pete.
Pete Yurkowski: How’s it going?
Holmes: Been living off of Thanksgiving leftovers for the last three days. I’ll be a happy man if I never see another green bean in my life.
Yurkowski: C’mon, you’ve gotta switch up with the mashed potatoes.
Holmes: I did!
Yurkowski: Everything at Thanksgiving is just another way to shove gravy in your mouth.
Holmes: It’s not doing wonders for my model/engineer physique.
Yurkowski: (Laughs) You’ve got to take it easy.

Holmes: Before the show you said you were going to find someone to follow you around. You ended up with Abi. Did you know she was going to be so disliked when you first made that deal?
Yurkowski: I didn’t think that was going to be a part of the deal. I definitely got the vibe after a few days that she was going to be extremely volatile. But, I didn’t know it was going to be that bad.
Holmes: (Laughs)
Yurkowski: Seriously. It got pretty bad.
Holmes: Is there a point where you’re thinking, “I’m going to stick with this girl because she’ll be easy to beat in the finals,” or are you worried that it’s going to ruin whatever numbers you’ve built?
Yurkowski: It looks like me and Abi were really tight, but it was actually me and Artis. He was the right-hand man and the voice of reason in our trifecta. Abi, you can see, taking Abi to the end…who’s going to vote for Abi?

Holmes: Was that your end game? You, Abi, and Artis?
Yurkowski: I didn’t really have that third slot yet. It was between Carter and Artis.
Holmes: Carter?
Yurkowski: If you look at Carter’s game; Carter doesn’t do anything. He just kind of latches on. I love Carter, but he always latches onto someone else and follows their game. He has no game of his own, he’s there for the challenges.
Holmes: But Carter wouldn’t have taken all of the bullets that you, Abi, and Artis would’ve taken as the majority alliance.
Yurkowski: The reason I didn’t want to take Artis was because I knew I would have his vote. Artis told me I’d have his vote no matter what. And, Lisa was extremely loyal. She didn’t even know that Skupin was going to vote for Artis. I felt like I knew I wasn’t getting RC’s vote. The other ones were up in the air.
Holmes: If you go to a final three with Abi and Artis, two people that RC wasn’t fond of, you don’t think she would’ve voted for you?
Yurkowski: I think in that sole situation she would’ve had to.

Holmes: Artis and I spoke last week, he seems to have a very deep issue with Skupin. Any idea what that was all about?
Yurkowski: I don’t know if he wants me to talk about it, it’s kind of between them. It all started in the beginning with Artis wanting him to be a returning player and teaching us stuff. It really didn’t end up like that.

Holmes: You confronted Malcolm about his idol, and he didn’t do a fantastic job of convincing anyone that he didn’t have it. Did you believe him?
Yurkowski: I don’t know. I really don’t know if I believed him or not. And, I’m not saying that because he made me look stupid. We were a lot closer than it looks on TV. Every time he went on reward he’d come back and tell me exactly what Penner was talking about. We had a fina- three plan. Not a for-real final three plan, but whoever stabs the other in the back first wins.

Holmes: Alright, let’s get some word association up in here. We’ll start with Malcolm.
Yurkowski: He’s a smart guy. Definitely a smart guy.
Holmes: Denise?
Yurkowski: Sneaky.
Holmes: Lisa?
Yurkowski: Church lady.
Holmes: Skupin?
Yurkowski: Kind of clueless.
Holmes: Penner?
Yurkowski: Snakelike.
Holmes: Carter?
Yurkowski: Spicoli.
Holmes: Abi?
Yurkowski: Brazilian time bomb.

Holmes: What was Denise doing that was sneaky?
Yurkowski: I had no idea. I never saw her talking to anybody. I had no idea she was even playing the game, which…you know…hats off to her.

Holmes: When I think about Pete on “Survivor.” I’m going to remember the ploy where you hid the immunity clue and RC got in trouble for it. Was there more of that that we didn’t see?
Yurkowski: I didn’t really have time. We wanted to throw a challenge to get rid of RC, but then we merged and we never got to do it. The game would have been changed because I feel like Skupin wouldn’t have any reason to flip.
Holmes: They keep showing Abi being horrible to Lisa. Is that where you slipped up by not taking care of someone on the bottom?
Yurkowski: I tried to keep everyone happy. Lisa was a close ally, I don’t think Lisa thought she was on the bottom. I think she thought that me and Abi were going to be the final three with her.

Holmes: We’re trying to keep track of Skupin’s many injuries and it seems like his right shoulder is starting to eat itself. Any idea what happened there?
Yurkowski: During the ball challenge…I don’t know how…but he got the ball to rip half of his arm off.
Holmes: How does a stationary object rip off half of your arm?
Yurkowski: How does Skupin get so many injuries? I have no idea.
Holmes: Is it possible his skin is made of tissue paper?
Yurkowski: (Laughs) It is possible.

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

‘Survivor: Philippines’ Recap: Here’s a Fact of Life; Don’t Cross Lisa Whelchel

November 21, 2012

'Survivor: Philippines' (CBS)

XFinityTV is blowing up their coverage of “Survivor: Philippines.” Every Monday Jeff Probst and I will tackle a wide variety of topics with the “Survivor” Question of the Week. Every Tuesday I’ll be squaring off against “Survivor: One World” favorite Kat Edorsson in this season’s Power Rankings challenge. Every Wednesday briefly after the show we’ll have a full episode recap and every Thursday we’ll have an interview with the latest eliminated player.  Follow me on Twitter (@gordonholmes) for all the updates!

Set Your DVR to Record “Survivor: Philippines”

Last Week: Penner felt like a turkey for screwing up the previous week’s vote, Malcolm realized he has a lot to be thankful for, Abi didn’t know when to shut her Ply-mouth, Artis’s million-dollar dreams were squashed, and Pete’s future in the game started to look pil-grimm.

Quick Note: Ply-mouth? Pil-grimm? I’m so sorry.

Another Quick Note: We are flying without a DVR tonight. So, this is advanced warning in case I miss anything/screw anything up.

39 Days, 18 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Let’s take a look at the tribe as it currently stands…

The Dangrayne Tribe (wearing black)

Abi-Maria – Business Student, 32
Carter – Track Coach, 24
Denise – Sex Therapist, 41
Lisa – Former ‘Facts of Life’ Star, 49
Malcolm – Bartender, 25
Michael – Professional Speaker, Author, and Coach, 50
Penner – Writer, 50
Pete – Engineering Graduate, 24

This evening’s festivities kick off with some post-Tribal fun. Abi is not happy about losing Artis. If only there had been some kind of magical, rooster-shaped piece of wood that could have kept him safe…

Skup lets us know that he made his move because he doesn’t think he would’ve gotten to the final three without breaking up the Tandang Trio. His plan now is to boot Abi and Pete, then at final six everyone say, “Game on.” What does that mean? There will still be alliances and idols and whatnot.

The next morning Abi and Lisa have a bit of a heart-to-heart. Lisa claims that she has never broken their alliance, but is open to breaking it in the future. Gotta give her points for honesty.

Abi doesn’t like that Lisa said that the others were nicer to her. Lisa brushes it off, saying she’d rather be sixth with people who don’t call her out at Tribal. Oh, snap…

Anyone else think Lisa and Denise are pioneering a new way to play this game with their pseudo hyper honesty? If it really is just a game, how can someone stay mad at you if you explain the moves you’ve made?

Reward Challenge Time: The tribes will be divided into two teams. They’ll race to flip drum symbols over so that they’re showing their team’s logo. Meanwhile, the player from the other tribe can flip their symbols back over. First tribe to get all three of their logos up wins a point. First tribe to three wins a spa vacation and a delicious meal.

One team is Skup, Penner, Denise, and Lisa while the other team is Carter, Abi, Malcolm, and Pete.

Round 1: Carter beats Penner.

Round 2: Skupin beats Malcolm when Malcolm forgot to flip one of their drums.

Round 3: Lisa beats Abi when Abi accidentally flipped the wrong drum. Although in her defense, this is like her first challenge ever.

Round 4: Pete beats Denise.

Round 5: Malcolm beats Skupin when Skup flips the wrong drum. Although in his defense, he’s lost a lot of blood.

In an awesome moment, Probst told Carter that he could use a pedicure. Carter looked at his hands and agreed. Jeff then reminded Carter that pedicures usually take place on a person’s feet. Give that man seventeen more Emmys!

At reward, everyone agrees to not discuss strategy. Malcolm initiated this plan because he doesn’t want to go to the final three with anyone he’s hanging out with. That’s smart too, because with two immunity idols between the four of them, they could try to talk him into making some trouble.

They return from the reward and Abi promptly tells everyone about what a wonderful time they had and how much they had eaten. This rubs the rest of Dangrayne the wrong way. She goes into great detail about how she feels like a peasant at camp and a princess at the reward.

The others comment about how she doesn’t have the best social graces. She doesn’t appreciate that and tells them that she won’t be cooking anymore. She informs them that she wants to eat, she just doesn’t want to cook. I gave my girlfriend that speech once. It did not turn out well.

The next day, Skup approaches Malcolm with his “Game on” plan. Malcolm would rather have a four-person voting block and take it to the end. You know, like everyone has done since Richard Hatch invented it 100 years ago.

Malcolm wants his four to include Skup, Lisa, and Denise. Skup goes to Lisa with this. What it boils down to for her is if she trusts Malcolm or Penner more. Lisa says she trusts Penner more. The irony in this is that she was the one to out Malcolm’s idol and break their alliance.

Skup and Lisa approach Penner about aligning with them, but he’s not ready to commit to it just yet. That might be a mistake.

Sure enough, Lisa thinks he missed an opportunity.

Next thing we see, Malcolm, Skup, Lisa, and Denise are shaking hands in the jungle. Game on, indeed.

Immunity Challenge Time: The players will maneuver a buoy on a rope through an obstacle. First five to get to the end will move on. They’ll then maneuver the buoy on a balance beam. First three to get to the end will  move on. In the last bit, they’ll maneuver the buoy around a boat, around a platform, and back to the beach. First one to get back to the beach wins immunity.

Round One: Malcolm, Penner, Denise, Skup, and Carter advance. Gah…Pete needed this.

Round Two: Denise, Carter, and Skupin advance.

Round Three: It’s close between Carter and Skup, but Carter and his perfect toenails manage to win.

Welllllp…if it is six against two, they can split the vote between Abi and Pete and it won’t matter if she plays the idol.

Back at camp, Penner lays out the plan to split the vote. If Abi doesn’t play the idol and it’s a tie, they’ll vote for Abi. This always works out, right Tyson?

Abi and Pete decide to target Malcolm because he’s such a threat. They think Skup might flip because he’s easily swayed. Is swaying a way of hurting yourself? Cause if so, then Skup is super easily swayed.

Abi approaches Lisa with this new plan, but Lisa reminds her that they’re not in an alliance anymore. Carter and Penner aren’t buying into it either.

That night at Tribal Council, Malcolm admits that he’s more worried about staying in the game than jury management at this point.

Skup thinks the idol is a factor that you’re always thinking about.

Pete knows he’s slated for execution, but he’s hoping he swayed someone.

Abi regrets how she handled the last Tribal Council. She also thinks that the fact that English isn’t her first language could be working against her.

Denise disagrees because she knows plenty of people who don’t have English as a first language, and they’re fine. She just thinks Abi is a pain.

Abi is upset because Lisa won’t forgive her for not trusting her. That’s perfect for Lisa as she won’t be branded a liar or a backstabber for busting out of the Tandang alliance.

Denise thinks taking Abi to the end is an easy win if that’s how you want to play.

Jeff thinks that maybe Abi’s problems are cultural because she can’t read the social cues her tribemates are giving her.

Abi breaks down in tears. Denise tries to talk to her, but she isn’t letting her finish a sentence.

Voting Time: Abi votes for Malcolm…and that’s the only vote we get to see.

J-Pro tallies and returns. He asks if anyone wants to play an idol…and Abi does.

We’ve got three votes for Abi, one for Pete, one for Malcolm, one for Pete, one for Malcolm, and the eleventh person to leave “Survivor: Philippines” and the fourth member of the jury is…Pete.

Abi forgets her torch on the way out. The question is; did she forget it, or does she want to have a torch, she just doesn’t want to carry it around?

Verdict: Pete going home was not a shocker. I’m assuming Abi’s done next week. So, maybe next week will be snoozer, but I can’t wait till we hit the final six. This season is easily the best thing since “Heroes vs. Villains.”

Who’s Going to Win: Malcolm, Skup, Lisa, and Denise are a respectable final four. Of them, Denise is your winner if she gets to the final Tribal.

Power Rankings Results: Kat and I both thought Pete was a dead engineer/model walking, so we both had him in the eighth slot. So, the current score is Team Kat: 116, Team Awesome Thunder: 118.

Any Questions? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

‘Survivor: Philippines’ Power Rankings: Round Nine

November 20, 2012

 

'Survivor: Philippines' (CBS)

XFinityTV is blowing up their coverage of “Survivor: Philippines.” Every Monday Jeff Probst and I will tackle a wide variety of topics with the “Survivor” Question of the Week. Every Tuesday I’ll be squaring off against “Survivor: One World” favorite Kat Edorsson in this season’s Power Rankings challenge. Every Wednesday briefly after the show we’ll have a full episode recap and every Thursday we’ll have an interview with the latest eliminated player.  Follow me on Twitter (@gordonholmes) for all the updates!

The Rules: Each week Kat and Gordon will create separate Power Rankings. The ranking of the person who is voted out of the next episode will determine the number of points the two players will earn. For example, if Malcolm is voted out this week, Kat will receive 5 points and Gordon will receive 1 point. The person with the most points at the end of the season will be crowned the ‘Survivor: Philippines’ Power Rankings champion!

Last Week: Kat had Artis in spot seven while I had him in spot six. So, the current score is Team Kat: 108, Team Awesome Thunder: 110.

Set Your DVR to Record ‘Survivor: Philippines

Kat’s Current Score: 108 

Any advice for Kat? Drop her a line on Twitter: @KatEdorsson

Gordon’s Current Score: 110

Any advice for Gordon? Drop him a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

 1. Denise: My how the tables have turned! Did you see Denise softly taking command over the majority votes? I know I would hate to be on her bad side! Denise is a force to be reckoned with. Clearly she still dominates in challenges and now it looks like the new “Kalabaw” has pulled Skupin and sometimes Lisa (lol) for the majority. She’s competitive, charming, understanding, and genuine. Perfect winner for the game!  1. Malcolm: Seriously, this whole Power Rankings is going to be one big cluster kerfuffle. I don’t know who’s aligning with who, I don’t know which way is up, I don’t know even know if I’d like to know what I’m playing for. But one thing I do know is that Malcolm has an immunity idol. And for that reason, he’s safe. Right…?
 2. Lisa: My final three is a scenario that I would LOVE to see happen! After last Tribal we got to see the three women in this game interacting and I thought it was amazing! Could you image Abi sitting in between these two women? Secretly hoping Lisa stands up and goes ‘“Facts Of Life’ Child Star” on her a**! POW! POW! Lol, totally kidding, but how funny would that be!! However I highly doubt we will have another final three of women as we did in “Survivor: One World.”

 2. Abi-Maria: Thanksgiving is right around the corner and Abi-Maria should be thankful that there are so many solid strategists this season. If the previews are telling the truth and Abi is one of the most annoying players ever, then there are several people left who appreciate the value of taking an annoying person to the end.QUICK ASIDE: How mean is that promo?
 3. Abi-Maria: You throw Lisa under the bus at Tribal and yet again sat out of a challenge with a splash of consistent, spicy Latino attitude. Abi is perfect for a final-three vote. However, only those who play with their head and not their heart will choose Abi for a final-three vote. But you need to wonder how many votes she could have in the jury if her tripod is sitting there.  3. Michael: OK, I’m thinking since you’re the swing vote, you only swung because you were offered some kind of future plan of attack. They had to say; we’ll get rid of Artis, then Pete, then Abi, then we’ll create some kind of sling for your rapidly dissolving shoulder.

  4. Carter: Yah Yah Yah, I know, what in the world is Carter doing up here? The kid is really growing on me and in the challenges he’s really doing work. If Carter didn’t pick up the slack on the red team during the RC it probably wouldn’t have been a blow out! My only problem with Carter is; I feel like he still might be a pawn player. And coming from experience, when playing the game you never believe you are a pawn until you’re blindsided or fighting for your life or you clearly didn’t know being a threat in the end is an honest mistake and you piss everyone off. Lol, I pray for you Carter!  4. Denise: Denise can win “Survivor.” When Penner confronted her about voting for him, she calmly said it fit her game and he was cool with that. If last week’s voting group holds she’s got the numbers. She’s a challenge threat, but not an obvious one. None of the current jurors have a problem with her. In fact, if I’m making a list of the people I’d least want to have sitting with me, she’s probably on top. Actually…her or Penner…

  5. Malcolm: Malcolm is out of the danger zone and he still has an idol. (Mind you, this is openly known.) He is also in the majority for taking out the remaining players and he clearly has a final three. Skupin and Penner need Malcolm, Denise and Carter want to keep them around in order to stay in this game, and since Peter and Abi look like the remaining targets they just might be in luck! I have a feeling Malcolm will do his best in the challenges in the next few episodes so he will have nothing to worry about.
 5. Lisa:  How loyal are you, Lisa? Can you patch up the Tandang alliance? Or is it time to finally send Pete packing? Artis made it sound like you’re listening to too many people during his exit interview. Is that throwing off your end game? Was your end game to get to the end with Pete and Abi? That seems like a winning plan, but the numbers don’t support it anymore. Might be time for you to sit back and watch for a cycle. Because if you’re caught pulling for Abi or Pete too hard, you might get lumped in with them.
 6. Michael: You’re still my favorite Skupin, but I can’t tell if the remaining players are going to let a veteran win yet! Happy you have won immunity and hopefully you’ll keep doing this so you will have nothing to worry about, but there are players with idols. Just keep making the good moves to vote with Denise and Malcolm so they clearly know your loyalty is with them.
 6. Penner: I don’t regret creating the rule that makes Philippines players ineligible for the 2012 “Survivor” Hall of Fame. The current season shouldn’t have an influence on a vote that’s supposed to reflect the best in the show’s history. That being said, Penner’s going to be a serious threat next year. He’s been playing beautifully this season. I don’t know if he has it in him to make it to the end, but that’s only because everyone has to realize what a fantastic job he’s been doing. I hope he enjoys his Fan Favorite check.
 7. Penner: I think all the hard work might have paid off. There are enough players to win immunity that would rather keep you over Peter. Not because you’re not a threat because YOU ARE, but because you happen to be more likable as of right now. I don’t think this will save you for long, but hopefully they will keep you for another week. #TEAMPENNER

  7. Carter: I’m predicting a messy Tribal Council. If the vote stays the same as last time we’ve got five on one side and three on the other. That’s not enough to split the vote to flush out an idol. Does Abi play hers? Does Malcolm play his? Can Skup convince Lisa to join up with him so it won’t matter? Either way, Penner is the obvious choice for Abi and Pete’s votes. So, I’m bet they’re going to vote for Carter.
 8. Pete: Between Peter and Penner, it could be either one who is going home this week, I think Peter would go before Penner, because Penner is doing an incredible job with shmuzzingggg Lisa and Skupin. Don’t get me wrong, Peter’s so much fun to watch, rocking my pink hoodie like it’s his JOB! But I think the remaining members of the tribe will be finally taking off the head of the snake I happen to love! Great game kid, but I know Abi will not save anyone with her idol, but you’re still one of my faves!
  8. Pete: Your alliance lost the lead. That’s bad. Your closest ally has an immunity idol. That’s good. However, your closest ally has been very much about self-preservation to the point that she turned on her former closest ally based on slights that might not have actually happened. That’s bad. “Molly…you in danger, girl.”Twenty five “Survivor” Points to whoever gets that quote. (“Survivor” points have no cash value and cannot be redeemed for anything ever.)


%d bloggers like this: