‘Survivor: Caramoan’ Power Rankings: Malcolm Cardboard Cutout Edition


'Survivor: Caramoan' (CBS)

Quick Note: We’re going to be bringing you all kinds of “Survivor” fun this season including episode recaps, exit interviews, and Power Rankings with Michael Skupin. Be sure to follow me on Twitter (@gordonholmes) for up-to-the-minute news and info.

The Rules: Each week Michael 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 Dawn is voted out this week, Michael will receive 2 points and Gordon will receive 3 points. The person with the most points at the end of the season will be crowned the ‘Survivor: Caramoan’ Power Rankings champion!

Last Week: Michael and Gordon both called it. They both had Corinne in spot twelve. So, the current score is Team Skupin 95, Team Lightning Punch 115.

Before we kick off this week’s rankings, let’s check in with our competitors…

Gordon Holmes: We had a wild one last week. What was your take on the post-merge fiasco?
Michael Skupin: I’ve said this before but understand on “Survivor” every vote is a blindside.  Regardless of what you may read or hear in post-game interviews; the ultra-protective quote “I knew I was going home.” If that was the case, we’d see many, many, many more big moves. Even Franny thought it was going to be Phillip or Andrea at the first Tribal Council.  Good advice is; it’s never safe to feel safe.

Holmes: I’ve been harassing Challenge Producer John Kirhoffer to bring back gross eating challenges for years. And, last week did not disappoint.
Skupin: I’m soooooooooooooooo happy to see the “local tucker” eating challenge.  It’s about time.  What fans fail to realize is that at this point in the game, the contestants are so hungry that we’d eat anything and then ask for seconds. My favorite eating challenge was when they made the family members do it on Season 5 in Thailand.

Holmes: Any parting words for my beloved Corinne?
Skupin: Goodbye, Corinne…impressed you played so hard, you trusted one person too many.  You had six, but needed one more and you opened the wrong door.  A door with baggage and haunting memories of her (Dawn) last season when she didn’t make that big move. I can sit her at my computer and tell you that a more obvious choice would have been someone else (Sherri) because Dawn may be more loyal at times than strategic, but hindsight makes every armchair “Survivor” fan a winner. You played too hard to keep the fans against a highly stacked favorite’s team. That made you an easy choice.  The crabs will have to find different curls to frolic in tonight.

Set Your DVR to Record ‘Survivor: Caramoan – Fans vs Favorites”

Michael’s Current Score: 95

Any advice for Michael? Drop him a line on Twitter: @mikeskupin

Gordon’s Current Score: 115

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

 1. Cochran: As the newly crowned “King of the Confessional” keeps us highly entertained, Cochran skyrockets all the way to #1 in my rankings this week. I hope he’s thanking the night rats that invade their shelter every night that Dawn trusts him.  His game could have been one conversation short of a very predictable boot but instead he helped orchestrate a big move that needed to be made.
 1. Brenda: All of the favorites were afraid of Brenda going into this mess, and with good reason. She was one of the stronger strategists in her previous season. Now, you only see her when she’s dancing or goofing off. But, this Purple Brenda act is just a facade. She’s capable of turning this game on its head if she needs to.
 2. Dawn: I’m so impressed that she had the ability in between the rain from the skies and the rain from her eyes to learn a lesson from her first time out there and make a BIG move. Down the road she might seem like a threat and if Corinne had made the jury, she certainly would not have gotten her vote but at this stage Dawn is playing the best strategic game out there by far. She single-handedly altered the game this week for almost everyone out there.
 2. Cochran: You know why everyone was so happy for Cochran when he won immunity? Because they’re not afraid of him. “Survivor” pushed the “lovable dork” narrative and everyone bought into it. But, Cochran is running the show at this point, just like he dreamt of doing when he was wearing buffs around his high school.
 3. Brenda: It looks like you’ll be a challenge threat no more with your twisted knee.  I’ve loved your game thus far, but it’s time to start tightening up an alliance or two with key people out there if you’re playing to win. A jury will not give you the million bucks if you don’t earn it.
 3. Dawn: Dawn’s playing a tough game right now. People don’t get upset when they’re stabbed in the back by people who are just playing the game. They get upset when they’re stabbed in the back by people they have a deeper connection with. Dawn is a ridiculously likable person, and the future jury members are likely to feel more betrayed by her than by someone like Phillip or Andrea.

  4. Andrea: Looks like you’re settling into your alliance nicely. Ride that wave and you can make a break when you need to.  How can you possibly resist a man in a uniform? Looks like you get to sleep with the rats another three days.
 4. Erik: So, Malcolm thought you were in the bag. Obviously, you weren’t. Where do your loyalties lie? You’d better solidify yourself somewhere and quick, because while picking off Malcolm’s buddies is going to be the order of the day, they won’t last forever. You’ll find yourself the challenge threat on a seven-person alliance.

  5. Erik: You’ve been tagged as the “float.” A newly coined “Survivor” strategy that’s a bit different than ‘under-the-radar” strategy. Unlike under-the-radar, floaters are visible, don’t say much…never engage in battles or strategy and no one ever knows how you’re going to vote. You never have a good alliance, yet your name never seems to come up when discussions are involving torch-snuffing. It’s a strategy that can work or backfire depending on who’s actually making decisions out there. Fortunately you guessed right this time and I believe you get to keep floating. You’re quote “I just wish I knew what I was doing” was very telling. PS: The “just tell me who to vote for” strategy will likely never get you a seven-figure check.  And, technically you weren’t the swing vote, there has to be an odd number of voters for that to happen.
 5. Andrea: Two things went in Andrea’s favor last week. She got rid of Corinne and Corinne didn’t make the jury. Now she’s got to start figuring out how she’s going to get to the end with Phillip and Sherri by her side. She also has to know better than to fall for Eddie’s flirtatious ways.
 6. Sherri: You got quiet since the tribe swap and even quieter since the merge.  Where did all your fire go?  You went from the strategist to, in Malcolm’s words, the weird one. Your fire didn’t go out, you just need to get it started again.  Don’t play the “as long as it’s not me” game. We love big moves!
 6. Sherri: What happened to Sherri? She went from strategic genius in the early days to Debbie Downer. The game isn’t even close to being over for her. She has a ton of wiggle room. Here’s hoping she’s able to get her groove back.
 7. Eddie: Eating gross foods may affect your love life, not eating them may affect your bank account. Weight it out, buddy. I’ll never forget my favorite quote from this season from you at the food challenge… “I bit the beak.” Eddie, Eddie, Eddie…beak is a delicacy in many countries ;).   I wouldn’t blame you for the “hit” on Andrea if it was strategy but sadly, it’s likely for another notch on the fireman’s pole. She’s way too crafty, bro. Be careful.
  7. Malcolm: “You lost today, kid. But it doesn’t mean you have to like it.” – “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” 

It breaks my heart to have my boy so low on the list, but the game is far from over for him. He still has an alliance with two idols and a roster of guys capable of winning some challenges.

 8. Phillip: I like that you’re really playing this game hard. You’ve actually created fear among the favorites and fear on “Survivor” is often the root of where decisions are made (Russell Hantz did that better than anyone). Reel it in just a bit and you may even have a shot.  PS: Your challenge throwing ability is becoming legendary. Maybe next time think about including your tribe in that decision.
 8. Reynold: Reynold and Eddie just can’t catch a break. Have they been on the right side of a single Tribal Council? It’s time for him to play his idol at a time that matters. If they get lucky they can start to chip away at Stealth R Us Too.
 9. Reynold: I continue to be highly entertained by your naivety in this game.  You definitely are no stranger to competition or “games people play” but “Survivor” is very different and you are getting an education on the fly. Right before the food-eating challenge you said you’re not used to eating gross things. Hmmmm, that describes about all seven billion people that walk this planet.   I loved your confessional, “I don’t think tonight’s going to be a big shocker” …hasn’t every Tribal Council you’ve attended so far been a big shocker for you?  It hasn’t gone your way once yet.  A lesson I hope you learn before it’s too late. All Tribal Councils are shockers for someone.
 9. Phillip: The good news is that your crew pulled off the win last week. The bad news is that your opponents have a pair of idols and you don’t have the numbers to properly split the vote.
 10. Michael: You didn’t have much of a choice but to go with Corinne. In “Survivor”-like fashion, they’ll forever hold you accountable for that choice.  I think you will last a few more votes because of your likeability but no one will ever trust you. A really big move is your only chance and that’s as slim as a day-39 contestant.
  10. Michael: Your BFF was sent packing, and the remnants of your alliance aren’t that close to you. Maybe there’s some magic to be worked with your old buddy Sherri? But that ship may have already sailed.
 11. Malcolm: After a failed Rooster Alliance and a failed rebellion against the favorites it looks like the Golden Boy put all his eggs in one basket.  Ironically, for a guy who two weeks ago thought he was in control of the entire game.  We haven’t seen anyone go home in a while with the hidden immunity idol in their pocket in James-like fashion, could it be this week?  It looks like Madeline may get a tribe named after her and maybe another immunity idol for her mantle. (When Malcolm had two idols on S25, instead of giving one to Denise and protecting his alliance at final five, he chose to take it home as a gift to Madeline, his mother.)
  11. Eddie: You know what will make a girl forget that you ate bugs on national TV? A million dollars. I think Andrea’s too smart to fall for your last-minute move and I think Reynold and Malcolm are going to be ready to play their idols. Nobody needs an immunity win more than you do.

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