Posts Tagged ‘Jimmy Johnson’

‘Survivor’ Castaway Interview – Jillian Behm

October 28, 2010

Jill was sitting pretty at Espada. She had Marty, Tyrone, Dan, Yve, and an immunity idol. Now, three episodes after the tribe swap she’s long gone (along with Tyrone, Yve, and the idol). For me, that makes Jane one of the great “Coulda Been” stories in “Survivor” history.

But, that’s how the water polo ball bounces after it’s pathetically thrown by a guy with two bad knees as he tumbles off a wall into a urine-filled pool.

I spoke with Jill the morning after her elimination to find out why Marty gave Sash the idol, if Fabio was given grief over relieving himself in the pool, and which player she finds “reprehensible.”

Gordon Holmes: Last night was kind of a weird episode in that they really focused on Marty, yet you were the one who went home. What were you doing behind the scenes to save yourself?
Jillian Behm:
Yeah, there wasn’t a lot to do. Once the tribe switch happened we were down three to five. And once Jane defected there it was two to six. Marty and I tried pretty hard to try to make inroads, or crack the nut with them, but we really didn’t. They were pretty secure in their alliance and they had Jane as a disposable vote. We tried talking to Sash, he strung us along, gave us sort of a hope that maybe things will work out. But it was pretty frustrating, there was nothing we could do. Even looking back at it I still think to this day there isn’t anything I could do to save my neck.

Gordon: Last night Jane mentioned that you and Marty had made her feel like an ugly duckling, but we never really saw anything like that. Can you give us any insight on why she would feel that way?
You know, I can’t. I was shocked to see a lot of sides of Jane last night. We didn’t treat her badly at Espada. And Jane had a couple of medical things, minor, not enough to warrant medical treatment from the production staff, but minor medical issues that I helped her out with. And she kind of ran off and did her own thing. It’s not like she came to Marty and I and said, “I want to be in an alliance with you, “ and we said, “No.” She was in an alliance with Wendy Jo and Holly, she was loosely aligned with Jimmy T. She was picking bad alliances. But she never came to us. And for her to say we treated her badly, especially after I’d taken care of her was pretty shocking.
Gordon: I’d be much nicer to someone who was helping to fix me up.
Jill: I think Jane’s got a bit of a vindictive streak. I think she’s pretty easily pointing the finger at other people. She sees nothing wrong with what she’s doing by hoarding coconuts and fish. And I’ve seen people online who are like, “They’re her fish, she caught them.” And that might be, but while she’s catching fish I’m filling her canteen with water. She may be up at 5:30, but there’s someone up at 1, 3, and 5 a.m. stoking the fire. We all have our part, so it’s not like she’s the only one working. So she’s cheating, lying, and I think pretty reprehensible.
Gordon: Did you have any idea that those things were going on?
Jill: No, it wasn’t until I watched the show.
Gordon: How did that make you feel?
Jill: Honestly, I felt angry at first, but in reflecting and thinking about this person and how she abused me and Marty and how she conducts herself…I guess I feel pity for her that life has made her turn out this way.

Gordon: You and Marty were obviously very close, you were comfortable enough to give him the immunity idol. How did that all come about?
That’s something that wasn’t shown. Marty, Yve, and I were on the beach during the Medallion of Power (challenge) that was the very first hour of the very first day. We looked at each other and said, “Yes,” and we were committed. I felt really good with the two of them. Yve and I tried to keep our alliance a secret because we didn’t want people to know we were a threesome, so we went out of our way not to be seen together.
Gordon: I wanted to give you a chance to address this; Jimmy T. had alluded that he felt there was a bit of a romantic attachment between you and Marty. Any truth to that?
Jill: I can assure there was nothing romantic about it. Marty and I have a lot in common.  We’re both married for many years with children, well, his children are younger. (Jimmy T.) said that to me, “It’s almost like you’re in love with him.” But, no, we just hit it off. I don’t know if Jimmy T. understands that you can have relationships with people without romance.
Gordon: Was it rough to be in an alliance with Marty when there wasn’t a thing you could do to fix his hair?
Jill: (Laughs) Yeah, he was starting to look like a little wild man. And I said, “Why’d you leave your hair so long?” He gave me some song and dance about it, but he does have an Amadeus thing going on, doesn’t he?

Gordon: How did you feel about Marty giving the idol to Sash last night?
They told Marty that they were going to do that, force the decision on him. And he asked what I wanted him to do, and we made that decision together. And I said, “Either way, I’m gone, but at least maybe you can curry favor or stay alive another day.” Cause we didn’t know that Jane was so tight with them. So, maybe they’ll pick him over Jane next time, we didn’t know. But, Marty and Sash both told me I was going home.

Gordon: We’re just now getting to see Sash in action, what are your impressions of him?
Sash is very bright, obviously. I actually realized that when we got to La Flor. It was obvious that he and Brenda were the only ones playing the game. Fabs…what you see is what you get with him. He’s not making any moves. So it was all Sash and Brenda. It was hard to watch last night with them being so cocky and vindictive. With me, it was never personal. I never took glee in voting someone out. It was like moving a pawn on a chessboard, but they’re sort of personalizing the game and doing some things that don’t sit well with me.

Gordon: Did Fabio face any kind of backlash from La Flor for peeing in the pool?
(Laughs) No, it was just Fabs. And do you know what he got away with? He voted for Brenda in the first Tribal Council, and Brenda thought it was Kelly B. That’s why Brenda wanted her out so bad. So Fabs has had some luck in this game. And nobody was too bent out of shape about him peeing in the pool.

Gordon: We have heard next to nothing from Purple Kelly. What can you tell us about her, what kind of game is she playing? What’s she like? What’s her favorite color besides purple?
I don’t know what her favorite color is besides purple, but it’s probably yellow. She’s a very sweet girl. She’s very nice. And don’t forget, she’s the youngest player out there. I actually liked her very well because she wants to go into nursing school. We talked about that. It’s a shame she’s not being shown more because she is funny…and she does have some blonde moments out there. But, she’s a really nice girl.

Gordon: OK, word association. I give you a name, you give me the first thing you think of. Let’s start with Fabio.
Fabio, Duuuude.
Gordon: Brenda?
Jill: Sexy.
Gordon: Sash?
Jill: Crafty.
Gordon: Jimmy T.?
Jill: Family man.
Gordon: Jimmy J.?
Jill: Gentleman.
Gordon: Marty?
Jill: Brother.
Gordon: Dan?
Jill: Loyal.
Gordon: Tyrone?
Jill: Athletic.
Gordon: Jane?
Jill: Pitiable.
Gordon: And let’s finish off with Holly.
Jill: Caring.

Gordon: What do you take from your time in Nicaragua that you can apply to your everyday life?
It was so much harder than I ever thought was possible. And I’m a student of the game and I’m pretty tough, I’m athletic, I have an outdoorsy background, but that place literally brought me to my knees at times. Every day now I thank God for a roof over my head, a bed under me, and food in my mouth. It is so amazing how the smallest thing like a tissue or a bar of soap or all of the little things that we take for granted, I hope I never lose that appreciation.

Gordon: When we talked in Nicaragua, you were very excited to get out there and beat some guys in the challenges. You had an opportunity to do that when you won that first individual immunity challenge. How did that feel?
That felt so good. When I applied for the show, I applied on the platform of being tired of these little girls who suck at challenges. So, I’m like, “Please, put a kick-ass woman on.” So that’s the one part of my game that I’m thrilled about. Winning the challenges felt great. Even last night with the water polo thing I scored twice on Chase and Marty and Sash didn’t score once.
Gordon: If you had gotten to the merge, it’s safe to assume you would have won all of the individual immunity challenges, right?
Jill: That is an absolute fact, Gordon.

Follow Gordon on Twitter for breaking “Survivor” news and updates.

‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Episode 7 Recap: A Strategic Leap of Faith

October 27, 2010

Last Week: Dan said he wanted to leave, but stayed. Marty claimed to be a chess grand master, but wasn’t. And I wanted cuties Yve and Kelly B. to stay in the game longer, but they didn’t.

39 Days, 20 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Here are the tribes as they currently stand…

The La Flor Tribe (wearing yellow)

  • Brenda – 27, Paddleboard Company Owner
  • Fabio – 21, Student
  • Kelly S. – 20, Nursing Student
  • Jane – 56, Dog Trainer
  • Jill – 43, E.R. Doctor
  • Marty – 48, Technology Executive
  • Sash – 30, Real Estate Broker

The Espada Tribe (wearing blue)

  • Alina – 23, Art Student
  • Benry – 24, Club Promoter
  • Chase – 24, Race Car Jackman/Country Singer
  • Dan – 63, Real Estate Executive
  • Holly – 44, Swim Coach
  • NaOnka – 27, P.E. Teacher

We start off with our friends back at Espada, and Dan is comparing himself to Jon Gotti. Apparently Gotti was known as the Teflon Don. Dan wants to be known as Teflon Dan. That’s not very catchy, but it’s better than Barely Mobile Dan.

Chase lets us know that Alina will be next to go if Espada loses immunity. I’m betting it’s because they remember how close she was to that evil one-legged girl. One legged folk can’t be trusted!

Over at La Florida, Sash does a terrible job explaining to Marty why they voted for him. Marty uses his fake chess grand master skills to deduct that he might be in some trouble. He also deducts that Jane must’ve voted for him. Well, that’s what he gets for fluffing off a southern girl. (Still not sure what that means…anyone?)

The following morning, Marty tries to make peace with the fluffed-off southern girl. He accuses her of voting for him. She doesn’t deny it or explain it, she just laughs and walks off.

Wow, we’re five minutes into this episode and Sash and Jane are making some questionable moves.

Reward Challenge:
One member from each tribe will act as a goalie and stand on a perch in the middle of a pool. Members of the other tribe will then run, jump off of a wall, and try to throw a ball into the opposing team’s goal. First tribe to score five times wins a Nicaraguan farm experience that includes horseback riding and breakfast.

Jane will sit out for La Flor.

Fabio will defend for La Flor while Chase will defend for Espada.

NaOnka goes first and scores for Espada. Jill goes next and hits one for La Flor. Benry fakes out Fabio and scores for Espada. Marty throws the ball low and hits Chase directly between the legs in the pole position. (Sorry, one of the few NASCAR terms I know.) No score for La Flor.

Current Score: Espada 2, La Flor 1.

Holly goes next and Fabio bats her shot away. Purple Kelly Purple hits her shot for La Flor. (And for those of you scoring at home, she didn’t say a word).

Next up is Dan. Pull up a chair cause this is going to take a while. Dan hobbles down the ramp, gingerly throws the ball, and falls into the pool. Fabio bats Dan’s throw away. Sash goes next and bounces one off the crossbar, no score. Alina puts her next shot over Fabio’s head and into the goal. Brenda goes next and misses her shot.

Current Score: Espada 3, La Flor 2.

Fabio hops into the pool and announces that he has to pee. He then does just that.


He assumes everyone pees in the pool. Probst takes a quick survey and nobody else was peeing in the pool.

NaOnka is up next and fires a shot past Fabio. Jokes on her though, she just jumped into a pool of Fabio’s urine. That’s what you get for swiping a man’s socks.

Jill then nails her shot for a La Flor point. Benry takes his turn and fakes Fabio out again, winning the reward for Espada.

Stop the presses! Purple Kelly gets to say something…

“Reward was for a horseback ride and breakfast and you get to milk…your own milk, I guess. I don’t know if that makes sense. You get to milk your own milk and that sounds amazing.”

Ahem…”Milk your own milk.” Maybe the “Survivor” editors have been doing us a favor with the lack of Purple Kelly coverage.

We meet up with Espada during their reward and they’re having a good old time riding horses. Chase gets a little emotional as horseback riding reminds him of his deceased father.

When they arrive at the farm, the first thing they have to do is milk their own milk. NaOnka gives it her best shot, but doesn’t have a lot of luck. She assures us afterward that she isn’t a farmer and she’s not used to touching an animal’s nipple.

Ready to move on? Excellent, let’s continue.

Back at La Flor, Jane has some success catching fish. However, instead of taking the fish back to camp, she sneaks off into the woods to cook one for herself.

“Survivor” Rule #1:
Hoarding food will get you kicked out.
During Espada’s reward breakfast, the emotion of getting to sit down and eat a meal has clearly gotten to the tribe as Holly and Alina start crying. NaOnka reads Alina’s emotional display as a reason to take her out. Is that NaOnka’s thing? Anything she perceives as a weakness is cause for scorn?

Immunity Challenge:
Two members from each tribe will stand on top of a tower and roll cannonballs down a chute. The other four tribe members will use ropes to try to aim the chutes toward the other tribe’s five tiles. First tribe to smash all five of the opposing tribe’s tiles wins immunity.

Fun Fact: They seem to be using the same set from the premiere episode’s gutter challenge.

Sash will sit out for La Flor.

Benry and Alina are on top of the tower for Espada, Brenda and Purple Kelly are on top for La Flor.

Not much to describe here, Benry misses the first shot for Espada while Purple Kelly hits hers. Alina hits the second shot while Brenda misses. Benry hits the third shot while Kelly Purple misses. Benry also accidentally pops Alina in the mouth.

Current Score: Espada 2, La Flor 1.

Alina hits her next shot while Brenda misses. Benry sings a little song about Espada only having little balls. I’m pretty sure he was referring to the cannonballs.

Quick Aside: For anyone who thinks there’s nobody left to root for, may I introduce Mr. Benry and Mr. Fabio. Those two are hilarious.

Benry hits his next, Purple Kelly misses hers. Fabio is worried that Purple Kelly and Brenda aren’t communicating. When Fabio’s giving you advice, you’re in bad shape.

Purple Kelly brushes it off, hitting her next shot, while Alina misses her.

Current Score: La Flor 2, Espada 4.

Espada switches to the larger cannonball and hits their final shot. Espada wins immunity.

Politicking around La Flor seems to center around a rerun of last week’s original plan – splitting the votes between Marty and Jill to flush out the idol.

Sash hatches a plan where he will try to get the idol away from Marty. It goes like this; Sash will guarantee Marty’s safety at Tribal Council if he hands over the idol. And if La Flor loses the immunity challenge after that, he’ll give Marty the idol back.

I give them credit for trying, but that’s a pretty stupid plan. Why would Marty want to make the leftover La Flors more powerful? Why give it to them in the first place if they’re going to give it back at the next immunity challenge?

And…Marty hands it over. What the hey?! He hands it over saying giving the idol to Sash will earn him one more cycle. Yeah, SO WILL PLAYING THE IDOL!

That night at Tribal Council, Marty calls Jane out for flip-flopping over to the younger side.

Jane doesn’t consider it flip-flopping, she considers it being true to her new tribe. Brenda agrees, saying that Jane is a very genuine person.

Sash admits that he has the idol, Marty says that it could go down as one of the stupidest moves ever. Fabio agrees that they could just vote him right out.

The youngins keep saying “we” have the idol. Probst reads this to mean that they have a lot of faith in Sash. He puts Sash on the spot and asks if he’d give the idol to Brenda. Sash looks like he’s seen a ghost. He says, “If that’s what we decide as a group, then maybe back at camp I might do that.” He then slips up and says, “If there comes a time where I lose trust in them…” Probst calls him out on it.

JPro asks Fabio if he’s familiar with Freudian psychology. Fabio lies and says he is.

Voting Time: Jane votes for Marty, Marty votes for Jane, Fabio votes for Marty, Jill votes for Jane, and the rest we’ll see in a minute.

A minute later Probst returns and reads some votes…two votes for Jane, one vote for Jill, one vote for Marty, one vote for Jill, one vote for Marty, and the eighth person voted out of “Survivor: Nicaragua” is…Jill.

Verdict: Wow, that was an impressive display of terrible strategy from the folks at La Flor. Kudos to the kids’ table for getting the idol off of Marty, but it wasn’t because of any sound logic. Marty may look at is as another episode on the show, but don’t go out handing an idol to the people who called you out last week.

I have a feeling a Parvati Shallow or a Rob Cesternino would carve this cast up.

Who’s Going to Win? Yikes. How’s this for a fearless prediction: Marty isn’t going to win “Survivor: Nicaragua.”

Power Rankings Results: Team Dragon Slayer had Jill in spot thirteen while I had her in spot eleven. The current score is now Team Dragon Slayer 85, Team Truth Seeker 89.

Follow me on Twitter for breaking “Survivor” news and because I’m sick of Kim Kardashian having more followers than me: @gordonholmes

What Do You Think? What did you think of Marty’s move? Will Jane’s fish dinner come back to haunt her? Is peeing in the pool grounds for voting someone out of the game?

‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Episode 6 Recap: $#*! My Fabio Says

October 20, 2010

Last Week: The old vs. young twist? Gone! The Medallion of Power? Gone! Tyrone? Gone! Dan? Inexplicably still here.

39 Days, 20 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Here are the tribes as they currently stand…

The La Flor Tribe (wearing yellow)

  • Brenda – 27, Paddleboard Company Owner
  • Fabio – 21, Student
  • Kelly B. – 26, Medical Student
  • Kelly S. – 20, Nursing Student
  • Jane – 56, Dog Trainer
  • Jill – 43, E.R. Doctor
  • Marty – 48, Technology Executive
  • Sash – 30, Real Estate Broker

The Espada Tribe (wearing blue)

  • Alina – 23, Art Student
  • Benry – 24, Club Promoter
  • Chase – 24, Race Car Jackman/Country Singer
  • Dan – 63, Real Estate Executive
  • Holly – 44, Swim Coach
  • NaOnka – 27, P.E. Teacher
  • Yve – 41, Homemaker

We meet up with the Espadans the morning after Tribal Council and Dan is telling Holly that he’s considering calling it quits. Holly uses the lessons she learned from “Survivor” legend Jimmy Johnson to try to convince Dan to stick around.

Maybe he wouldn’t be so keen on quitting if someone hadn’t sunk his super expensive shoes.

Quick Aside: Will someone please come to my house and hide the Halloween candy?  Thank you.

Later, Yve confronts Holly about not being included in the Tyrone vote. Holly thought Yve was in an alliance with Tyrone. (If you read Tyrone’s exit interview, you know that definitely wasn’t the case.)

Meanwhile at La Flor, Marty tells us that he feels like he left a serious drama and joined “Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.” I’m thinking it’s more like “Fabio and Dumber.”

Jill is very concerned with how closely knit the younger tribe is. Brenda then confirms that concern by saying it’s still young vs. old. She then corrects the confirmation of the concern and says it’s the young and Jane vs. the old. Brenda wants to pull the ol’ split vote trick the next time La Flor goes to Tribal Council to flush out Marty’s immunity idol.

Immunity Challenge: Tribal immunity is not on the line, two sweet looking La Flor and Espada-themed individual necklaces are up for grabs. That means we’re in for two Tribal Councils tonight.

In the challenge, players will race to a digging area with a paddle. With that paddle they will dig for rope hoops. Once they have the hoop on their paddle they’ll have to toss it over their shoulder and into a basket that’s attached to their backside. From there they’ll run their hoop back to the beginning and place it on a post. First person to place all three hoops on their post wins immunity. The two winners will then compete in a ring toss, the first to hit three tosses receives a feast of chicken and beef kabobs for their team.

Espada goes first and…there’s not much to describe, although watching them toss the hoops into the basket is hilarious. Holly eventually wins individual immunity. As JPro places the sword-shaped Espada immunity idol around her neck, it promptly slips down her shirt. Awkward.

The La Floricans are up next and it’s more of the same. Jill, Marty, and Kelly B. are neck and neck at the finish, with Jill eventually pulling out the win. Also, her fleur de lis-shaped necklace stays out of her shirt.

The final round can best be described as Jill and Holly throwing hoops at a set of hooks. It’s close, if not very exciting, with Jill winning it for La Flor. I can’t wait for the pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey reward challenge.

Back at La Florida, Brenda is annoyed that Jill’s immunity win has thrown off their plans. Her and BBNY (Biggest Bachelor in New York) devise a plan to split the votes between Marty and Kelly B.


Hey, nowhere in my “Survivor” recap contract does it say I have to be impartial.

Meanwhile, Marty is bragging to Fabio that he is a grand master in chess. Seriously. He tells Fabio this because he claims to have the rest of the game worked out, but he needs Fabio’s help.

Shortly afterward, Marty admits to us that he isn’t a chess grand master. Well heck, if he was fibbing he should have just told Fabio he was a former head prefect at Gryffindor.

Back at Espadakota, Holly’s trying to figure out where Dan stands. Dan isn’t concerned about staying in the game because he already owns a Range Rover and a Ferrari. I’m starting to feel less bad about the destruction of his $1,600 shoes.

Benry wants to keep Dan around because he knows Dan isn’t much competition. Chase agrees with Benry, then admits to us that the only person he trusts on Espada is NaOnka. Oof…that’s rough.

NaOnka wants Dan to go home because his legs are going to snap off and “He’s going to be walking on nubs.” Apparently she’s obsessed with people who don’t have legs.

Yve then digs her own grave by telling Alina and NaOnka that she can be valuable to them because of how well she knows Marty, Jill, and Jane. Yve may have meant it as “I know the dirt on them,” but that certainly isn’t how Alina took it. She thinks they’re in an alliance.

Over at La Flor, Sash takes Fabio aside to explain the split-the-vote plan. Fabio turns to Sash with a straight face and says, “Do we want to flush the idol from Marty?”

I love you, Fabio. Seriously, never change.

Later, Sash convinces Marty that they’re going to be voting for Jane. Marty agrees to go along with that plan.

Marty tells us that he’s going to sit on the idol as it would only buy him one more Tribal Council anyways.

That night at Tribal Council, the topic of Marty’s immunity idol is brought up. Marty argues that he revealed it to show what an honest game he’s been playing. Just like his days playing seeker at the Quidditch Cup.

Brenda thinks he revealed the idol so he could appear to be noble.

Probst then kind of outs the youngsters by asking if the kids will make Marty feel safe so he won’t play it and then vote him out. Marty admits that thought has crossed his mind.

Probst asks Kelly B. how comfortable she is within the tribe. She says that she feels comfortable.

JPro asks Brenda if Jane has anything to worry about. Brenda throws the chess master under the bus by saying that Jane has to worry about Jill and Marty voting her out.


Marty says Jane doesn’t have to worry about them because the two of them can’t vote her out without help from the original La Flor.

Marty then mouths to Jane to vote for Brenda.

Voting Time: Jane votes Marty and advises him to never fluff off a southern woman, Marty votes for Brenda because she’s the black widow, the king cobra, and the black mamba all rolled into one, Brenda votes for Kelly B., and the rest aren’t shown.

Probst does some solid tallying then returns. He asks if anyone wants to use the hidden immunity idol and Marty…doesn’t.

Three votes for Marty, two votes for Brenda, and three votes for Kelly B…a tie!

Tie breaking rules; Marty and Kelly B. won’t vote, everyone else votes for either Marty or Kelly B.

No votes are shown, Probst tallies yet again, and here we go. One vote for Marty, three votes Kelly B., and the sixth person voted out of “Survivor: Nicaragua” is…Kelly B.


Espada is then brought in as La Flor sits down to a delicious feast.

Probst rubs it in, asking Espada if it bothers them that La Flor gets to eat. Dan gets the line of the night saying if it isn’t a martini then it doesn’t bother him.

Yve is fighting for her life, pointing out that Dan talking about quitting is bad for the tribe’s morale. She also thinks Dan is a liability in challenges. She must be a goner.

Dan swings back, claiming that Yve is arrogant. Yve retorts by saying she isn’t always talking about her six cars like Dan does. Yeah, I’m over the $1,600 shoes.

Alina points out that it’s getting to be that part of the game where you might not want super competitive people to stick around.

Voting Time: Dan votes for Yve, Yve votes for Dan, and the rest are sacrificed in the name of creating drama.

JPro tallies for the third time in one night (a record?) and returns. One vote for Yve, one vote for Dan, two votes for Yve, and the seventh person voted out of “Survivor: Nicaragua” is…Yve.

Verdict: Kind of a dull episode until Brenda made her move at Tribal Council. I’m not sure I understand it either. If she’d kept her mouth shut, they could have hid behind the “Well, we wanted to flush your idol” excuse, but now they’ve got a ticked off pretend chess master on their hands.

Who’s Going to Win? I wonder if Brenda’s making some unnecessary moves. Maybe someone like Chase or Sash who’re more laid back are better bets.

Power Rankings Results: Team Dragon Slayer had Yve in spot 11 and Kelly B. in spot 12 for a total of 23 points. I had Yve in spot 15 and Kelly B. in spot 10 for a total of 25 points. The current score is now Team Dragon Slayer 72, Team Truth Seeker 78.

Follow me on Twitter for breaking “Survivor” news and borderline witty remarks: @gordonholmes

What Do You Think? Should Brenda have called out Marty at Tribal Council? Would you buy a book of Fabio sayings? Has Jane become your favorite player?

‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Power Rankings – Round 5

October 20, 2010

The Rules: Each week, “Survivor: Tocantins” and “Survivor: Heroes Vs. Villains” star Benjamin “Coach” Wade and XFINITY TV’s “Survivor” recapper Gordon Holmes 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 Sash is voted out this week, Coach will receive 3 points and Gordon will receive 6 points. At the end of the season, the person or team with the most points will be named the “Survivor: Nicaragua” Power Rankings Challenge Champion.

Last Week: Three things disappeared last week; the Medallion of Power, Tyrone, and Team Dragon Slayer’s sizable lead. Coach and “The King of Gabon” Randy Bailey had Tyrone in spot three. While Gordon called it, having Tyrone in spot sixteen.

This Week: Two people are going home as both tribes will square off in individual immunity challenges.

Now, let’s have a quick word with our competitors…

Benjamin “Coach” Wade: As the Noble Knight and the Exiled King regroup and move back to the castle and barricade the walls, fill up the moat and lick our cursed wounds after a thorough drumming last week from the “Truth” Seeker. Time to get back in the game and back to war.

Randy Bailey: No comment on last week’s results except that karma can be a bitch.

And before we start this week’s contest, let’s honor the most recent castaway…


Coach’s Requiem for Tyrone: Wow, what a shocker. It’s incredible how things can turn on a dime. Was Tyrone like that in the beginning and we just didn’t get to see that side of him, or was it the “not me” syndrome from the rest of the tribe? I can’t believe that Dan is still in there but hey, stranger things happen. As for the NaOnka/Alina alliance…politics makes strange bedfellows and boy is it political out there on the island.

Sigh, but alas, I digress. To Tyrone: Big, strong, calm, a leader, rational…hey that’s why they do the switch. And I’m not buying the chicken thing. You just reach in there and break off a piece. His relentless picking at the same bone is not fooling me. I think that’s just a decoy for the earlier soft guy that we saw.

The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Gonna miss Tyrone, but just like always we see people taking out physical threats way too early and simply ignoring the dead weight.  Why should this season be different than the previous 20?


Current Score: 49


Current Score: 53

brenda .. chase
#1: Kickin’ ass in challenges, finding the immunity idol, flirting with the guys, I think she will start making more power moves in the future. She’s steppin’ up (and hopefully not steppin’ out).
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Her edit showed a hint of cocky which means she will see Halloween but not Thanksgiving.
#1: He’s a cornerstone of the Minority Majority alliance, he’s the strongest guy on Espada, he’s clearly on NaOnka’s good side. He’s doing just fine.
chase . brenda
#2: See Benry’s comment below. Are you all in?
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: His emotional story to NaOnka had only one purpose…get the viewer to like him…first hint of a possible winner.
#2: I think Brenda is the most dangerous player this season. She saw right though Marty’s idol unveiling. She’s still my pick to win the whole thing. Her main problem could be her alliance realizing how smart and cunning she is.
sash . benry
#3: You look like every episode you are chillin’ on the beach without a care in the world. A wry smile and a non-threatening posture is getting you deep into the game.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: You have been dealt a perfect hand.  Now let’s see if you know how to play it.
#3: Benry finally getting some face time. Nice to see him step up, too.  It looks like we’re heading into a youngster-heavy merge. It’ll be interesting to see how the dynamics work out now that they’ve been apart for a while.
fabio . alina
#4: I think you are just dumb enough to not make alliances and not be a threat. Good strategy whether it’s intentional or not. 🙂
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: I said before this guy reminds me of Matty from Gabon.  I think he will have a similar outcome…late jury.
#4: I think the swap worked out best from Alina. She went from being NaOnka’s punching bag to being her shoulder to cry on.
benry . kellys
#5: Keep it up. Just don’t go too strong in the immunity challenges to show your hand yet. You remind me of a good poker player.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: I like this guy more than I thought I would.
#5: Purple Kelly Purple, you’re the best. I don’t know what you’re the best at, cause we never see you, but I adore you.
jane . sash
#6: Given the young ones the scoop on Marty the Mamba. Good one. That will lock in a vote or too. You might be on track to win this thing keeping in the middle like you are doing.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Saw some signs of the edit making her out to be more valuable than she really is…this means she is going deep.
#6: What’s the BBNY (Biggest Bachelor in New York) been up to? For someone who wants to be the next Russell Hantz, he sure does play under the radar.
kellys . naonka
#7: Just hangin’ in the middle. I think I didn’t give you enough credit the first go around. Is this another Natalie White?
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Coach and I first fill in our list from the bottom and then from the top.  We had everyone assigned a position but we were missing one.  We could not think of Kelly Purple.  This is a very good sign to last a long, long time.
#7: I’m not going to lie, it went against every natural instinct I’ve ever had to feel bad for NaOnka last week. I’m sure she’ll be fine, but quitting talk can raise your alliance mates’ eyebrows.
alina . fabio
#8: Strange bedfellows…hmmm. But I think you are going to snap one of these days on NaOnka when the time is right!
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: You seem way too normal for this game.  How did you get by casting?
#8: Do we have any idea where Fabio allegiances lie right now? I was under the assumption that he was on the outside of the Minority Majority alliance. Have we seen him partnering with anyone?
holly . holly
#9: “You remind me of my sons, Tyrone reminds me of my great grandfather, King reminds me of my older brother.” Not faulting you for trying that line but were Benry and Chase really buyin’ that one?
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: I liked you better when you were nuts.  Again, what are they not showing us?
#9: Holly turned the swap to her advantage by becoming a swing vote. Smart move. And with Dan and Yve below her on the totem pole, she could hit the merge and coast for a while.
naonka . kellyb
#10: I think you are safe as long as you don’t quit. Of course Holly looked like she was going to quit when Jimmy J. was the hero for an episode.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: No squeaking noises this week, wtf?
#10: It’s my instinct to think she’s safe because NaOnka was swapped to Espada…but is she? Have we seen her buddying up to anyone besides Alina?
yve . jane
#11: You are too quiet in this episode. Use your youthful good looks to sexify the younger guys and relate to the other girls.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Still trying to figure out the spelling of your name.
#11: I love me some Jane. I hope the youngsters see the value in her spirit and her sense of humor. But if they want to clean up the rest of the pre-merge immunity challenges, they may send her packing.
kellyb . marty
#12: You seem to be even more on the outs with the new tribe. I know they aren’t showing much but you seem to be deflated since NaOnka put the beat down on you. Come on, pick your head up and get back in the game.
King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Na is out of your hair now so let’s see you step up.
#12: I’d like to think that Marty would never be caught off guard with an immunity idol in his pocket. But it’s happened several times before…
jill . dan
#13: The queen will follow the king and will not relate to the younger kids. Fabio will be the key swing vote for the vote.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Lucky you have Marty in front of you…let’s see if you can dance out of his shadow before it is too late.
#13: I give Dan all the credit in the world for being able to stay in this game, but there has to come a point where Espada needs to win some challenges.
marty . jill
#14: You are starting to overplay things. The saying goes “too much of a good thing” can be a bad thing.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Unfortunately you were cast on a season of “Survivor” with a double-digit number (like me) you must throw away your playbook if you have any chance.
#14: The younger part of La Flor knows Marty has an immunity idol, and with Jane they have the numbers to split the vote. That’s bad news for Jill, which is a shame because I think she played a solid game.
dan . yve
#15: You are like a dingleberry that just keeps clingin’ on. Let go already.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Would have liked to have seen you on a real season with real challenges.
#15: Everyone voted for Tyrone except for Yve. That can’t be good. Her only hope may be winning the individual immunity challenge.

Quick Note: Follow Gordon on Twitter for breaking “Survivor” news and updates.

What Do You Think: Who’s going to win this round; Team Dragon Slayer or Team Truth Seeker? Which two players are going home next? Do you miss the Medallion of Power?

‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Castaway Interview – Tyrone Davis

October 14, 2010

Here are two little pieces of advice for anyone going on “Survivor” in the future…

1.    Don’t be the leader.
2.    Don’t eat more food than anyone else.

These two rules seem pretty basic, but every season several people fall into those traps. Unfortunately for Tyrone Davis, he found himself with a foot in each trap last night. I spoke with Tyrone the morning after his dismissal to get his thoughts on the work ethic of the younger tribe, Holly’s sanity, and of course, Chickengate.

Gordon Holmes: Were you blindsided last night?
Tyrone Davis:
I predicted it. I knew it was going to be me or Yve because from the four remaining Espada members, we were the only threats. And Holly was a wayward vote because I knew she was crazy. I figured they’d probably get her. She’s like a blade of grass in the wind, she’s going to go whichever way.
Gordon: What was Holly like to have around camp?
Tyrone: She was a space cadet. She’s crazy. She needs to be on somebody’s couch. She’s like Lisa Kudrow’s character on “Friends.” She’s a dingbat, basically. She did things around camp, but she did say at one point she wanted out of there. She lasted longer than me, so she did something right.

Gordon: Last night they showed you laying down the law with the new Espada tribe. Was that an accurate portrayal?
Not at all. Any conversation was an open-ended conversation. I asked for input. They didn’t show that. But, they didn’t boil their water before they drank it, which I thought was crazy as hell. There could be parasites and whatever else. I said, “That’s cool, you don’t have to boil your water, but I’m still going to boil mine.” I tried to tell them the benefits of doing that. But, that’s the generation gap. We’re all adults, but there’s a difference.
Gordon: How big of an impact does that age difference have on tribal unity?
Tyrone: Definitely some impact. The Y2K kids, they have a sense of entitlement. The work ethic is different, the sense of honor and integrity is not there. On Espada we tried to work together more than the kids were. I work with kids as a teacher and a coach, but I don’t have kids of my own. Maybe there’s a technique that I missed along the way that could have been a benefit.
Gordon: Like smacking them upside the head?
Tyrone: No, I don’t mean like smacking them upside the head, but after watching the show there’s a couple of them that could use some discipline. Maybe they didn’t get enough hugs. Maybe I could have taken a more active role in connecting with them. I could’ve said, “It’s going to be OK, sweetie,” when NaOnka had her meltdown. I read through NaOnka more than anyone else there.
Gordon: What do you think her issue is?
Tyrone: I think her issue is insecurity. She probably didn’t get enough hugs as a kid. I don’t know, but I’m a little bit embarrassed for her. I’m not a doctor, but she’s probably attention starved.

Gordon: I’m fascinated with Jill and Marty. Who’s in control of that relationship?
I think it’s a two-sided relationship. Marty’s arrogance or sense of entitlement came off strong to everybody else. But, as far as who’s in control, they both have strong personalities.

Gordon: One of the main rules of “Survivor” is be careful with the food. You got grief over eating what Benry believed to be a large piece of chicken. Did you have any idea that people were taking that so seriously?
What happened was, I waited until everyone had their share. So, I ate what was left. And if you look at it, there wasn’t much left. I was gnawing on the bone, and there wasn’t much there. I didn’t get any more than anyone else. It’s not like I had a damn leg. And I find it ironic. OK, the black man is eating all the chicken.
Gordon: Why’s it got to be like that?
Tyrone: It is what it is, and I do eat a lot. People who know me know I eat a lot.
Gordon: You’re the biggest guy out there. You’re built like a WWE action figure.
Tyrone: (Laughs) That’s funny.
Gordon: What affect did the lack of food have on you.
Tyrone: I was doing better than most people out there. I’m a bachelor, sometimes I don’t eat for 24 hours at a time. I took it as a challenge.

Gordon: What was your relationship like with Jimmy T.?
I actually liked Jimmy T. He’s a decent guy, but he’s attention starved. I told him he was doing himself a disservice by carrying on the way he was carrying on. But, that’s who he is. Where he comes from, he’s the man, he’s the leader. But, he’s not where he comes from. He was annoying the daylights out of everyone else, but it was cool. I like the dude.

Gordon: OK, word association time. Let’s start with Jane.
Gordon: Holly?
Tyrone: (Expletive deleted) dingbat.
Gordon: Yve?
Tyrone: I guess I would say unstable.
Gordon: Jimmy T. said “a lot of baggage” for Yve. What’s going on with Yve that we’re not seeing?
Tyrone: Yve is very unstable. From a couple of conversations, she’s got some psychological issues. When we meet everybody, we were talking about everybody’s careers and I said, “Are you a homemaker?” She’s like, “No! I’m a mother!” And I was like, “Whoa, sorry I offended you. What’s wrong with being a homemaker?” I thought that was an honorable thing. So, obviously she has some man issues. She can’t stand men, she’s done with men. She’s got some issues.
Gordon: Benry?
Tyrone: Crafty.
Gordon: Jimmy T.?
Tyrone: Insecure.
Gordon: Jimmy J.?
Tyrone: Fireman.
Gordon: Alina?
Tyrone: Conniving.
Gordon: NaOnka?
Tyrone: (Laughs) What is the word for her…troubled.
Gordon: Marty?
Tyrone: In the words of Jimmy T., he’s a prissy (expletive deleted).
Gordon: (Laughs)
Tyrone: That was funny!

Follow Gordon on Twitter for “Survivor” news: @gordonholmes

‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Episode 5 Recap: The Grossest Challenge Ever

October 13, 2010

Alternate Headlines: Spit Happens or Wheely Disgusting

Last Week: NaOnka found an idol and picked a fight, Dan stood around, and Marty added another Jimmy to his hit list by taking out Jimmy Tarantino.

39 Days, 20 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Here are the tribes as they currently stand…

The La Flor Tribe aka The Young Tribe (wearing yellow)

•    Alina – 23, Art Student
•    Benry – 24, Club Promoter
•    Brenda – 27, Paddleboard Company Owner
•    Chase – 24, Race Car Jackman/Country Singer
•    Fabio – 21, Student
•    Kelly B. – 26, Medical Student
•    Kelly S. – 20, Nursing Student
•    NaOnka – 27, P.E. Teacher
•    Sash – 30, Real Estate Broker

The Espada Tribe aka The Older Tribe (wearing blue)

•    Dan – 63, Real Estate Executive
•    Holly – 44, Swim Coach
•    Jane – 56, Dog Trainer
•    Jill – 43, E.R. Doctor
•    Marty – 48, Technology Executive
•    Tyrone – 42, Fire Captain
•    Yve – 41, Homemaker

We meet up with Espada the morning after Tribal Council, and Marty is very pleased with how the game is going. By his math they’re set through at least the next three Tribal Councils. He says it’d take something extraordinary to disturb his plans now.

Over at La Flor, NaOnka tells us how happy she is with her alliance. Her hair looks good, her shoes look good, she has an idol. Nothing could possibly go wrong.

If this was the “Amazing Race” they’d cue that sound effect that tells you when someone is making a mistake.

Sure enough, we’re swept over to some kind of challenge set-up where Jeff tells the tribe to drop their buffs. (Jeff, what’d you say to me in Nicaragua about not always saying the same things?!)

Each of the players pulls a rock out of a bag to decide the new tribe captains. The winners are Brenda and Holly. That’s nice symmetry, the person playing the best game and the person playing the worst game will get to pick teams.

Brenda gets to choose three Espada players, while Holly gets to choose four La Flor players. Brenda chooses Marty, Jill, and Jane. Holly chooses Alina, Benry, Chase, and NaOnka.

Your new tribes are…

La Flor:
Brenda, Kelly B., Kelly S., Fabio, Sash, Marty, Jill, Jane
Espada: Holly, Dan, Tyrone, Yve, Alina, Benry, Chase, and NaOnka

Wow, odd picks by Brenda. Is she trying to weed out who she thinks is the old Espada leadership?

Also, the Medallion of Power is no longer in play. Don’t act upset, you hated it.

NaOnka tells JPro that she’s upset that she’s losing some of her buddies. Yeah, I’m sure Fabio and Kelly B. are really upset about this.

Reward Challenge: Players will throw balls up a ramp, the balls will then roll down a Plinko-style board, hitting obstacles on the way down. Two members of the other tribe will try to catch the balls. The first side to drop a ball loses a point. First team to get three points wins a flock of chickens.

Jane gets a little ahead of herself yelling, “I’m gonna wring that neck on that chicken!” Way to make a good first impression there, Jane.

Not much to describe here. Espada wins the first point when the Biggest Bachelor in New York drops a ball. La Flor scores the next point when Tyrone drops one. Espada scores again when Marty and Marty’s amazing hair drop a ball. La Flor ties it up when Alina drops one. And finally Espada wins when Marty drops another ball.

Back at Espada camp, Tyrone is upset that his alliance is gone, but doesn’t mind that there are some lovely young ladies around camp. He also lays down the law as to how the Espada tribe does things.

NaOnka informs us that Tyrone is not a gangsta. Thanks, NaOnka.

And showing that crazy can attract crazy, NaOnka and Holly actually start to bond. Holly decides that she’s on the outs with the old Espada tribe and that she’s on board with whatever the youngsters want to do.

Over at La Flor, Fabio is “stoked” with his new tribe. He seems less stoked after Marty tells him how hard everyone worked over at Espada.

Jane then rats out Marty and Jill to the kids’ table saying, “They’re as tight as ticks, one of them humping the other one on the back.” She then uses her fingers to pantomime what tick intimate relations must look like.

This show needs more Jane and Fabio.

Next up, Fabio tells Marty about NaOnka tackling Kelly B. Marty says that’d never fly at Espada. He also claims to have not had to lie to anyone (I know a certain two-time Super Bowl champion who’d disagree with that). Then, he admits to everyone that he has an immunity idol.

Brenda doesn’t approve of this move as much as Jimmy T. did. She thinks this puts a huge target on his back.

Back at Espada, the rain is starting to pour down. NaOnka is concerned because when she gets cold and wet she starts to lose it. Too…many…jokes…

Apparently this is a big deal, she even tells Alina that she’s considering quitting. It’s nice to see Alina and NaOnka getting along. Maybe NaOnka’s hatred is specifically for people with less than two legs?

Chase joins the two of them and cheers NaOnka up by telling her a touching story about how he saw a rainbow on the day that his father passed away. It might have gotten a little dusty here at “Survivor” Central.

Immunity Challenge: Three players from each team will be strapped to a wheel. As the wheel rotates, their heads will dip into a trough. They’ll have to fill their mouths with water while they’re underwater. As they rotate to the top, they’ll spit the water into a funnel. Once the funnel is filled up with water a ball will be released. Another player on the tribe will take the ball and try to break a series of tiles. The first team to break all five tiles wins immunity.

OK, I’m going to go on record as saying I think this is the grossest challenge in “Survivor” history. Now, I know what you’re thinking, “Gordon, they’ve been forced to eat bugs and drink blood on this show.” And that’s true, but all of those challenges were based on local customs and traditions. In this challenge they’re basically dunking their dirty, greasy, been-hanging-out-on-a-beach-for-two-weeks heads into a trough of water and taking a big gulp.

Fun Fact: You know the kid in every elementary school who has a weak stomach and pukes easily? At my elementary school that kid’s name was Gordon Holmes. This wasn’t an awesome challenge for me.

Maybe that wasn’t such a fun fact.

On the wheel for La Flor we’ve got Kelly B., Purple Kelly Purple, and Brenda. On the wheel for Espada we have Yve, Alina, and Holly.

La Flor’s strategy is to go as quickly as possible, while Espada’s is to go slow so they can spit more water into the funnel. Apparently Espada had the right plan as their ball is released first.

Tyrone and Benry are shooting for Espada. Jane and Fabio are shooting for La Flor. Somewhere in the distance Jimmy T. is screaming, “Put me in, Coach! I coulda beena contender!”

The tile breaking comes down to the final tile, with Fabio winning it for La Flor by hitting the final shot.

NaOnka tells us that she doesn’t want to quit and she doesn’t want her students to think she’s a quitter, but she’s thinking of quitting.

So…it’s OK for your students to think you’ll bully a one-legged woman?

Later that day, Espada is discussing whether or not to eat a chicken. Tyrone wants to keep the chickens for the eggs, everyone else wants to eat a chicken.

Tyrone says he’s not going to push the issue and isn’t going to “Gangsta it.” Which is good, cause NaOnka already told us he isn’t a gangsta.

Holly is annoyed that Tyrone stayed away during the killing and preparation of the chicken, but was first in line when it came time for eating the chicken. Benry also lets us know that Tyrone took the biggest piece of chicken.

“Survivor” always comes down to food. Every time.

That night at Tribal Council, Benry tells Jeff that he thinks Tyrone is the leader of Espada. Tyrone agrees that he is the leader and is happy to have the position.

Alina thinks that Tyrone treats the former La Flors like they’re children. She also threatens to hold her breath until he stops.

Jeff asks NaOnka to compare her time on “Survivor” with the most difficult thing to ever happen in her life. She says it’s been as rough as when she got a divorce. She thinks “Survivor” has been better because she has a support system.

Jeff tries to put Benry on the spot, asking if they’re OK with NaOnka quitting. Benry says he doesn’t know what Jeff is talking about. Jeff doesn’t believe him. Meow. Jeff can get away with that because he is gangsta.

Yve says she understands and that it’s a cause for concern when someone starts throwing around the q-word.

Voting Time: Tyrone votes for NaOnka, Benry votes for “The King of Espada” but the name he writes down isn’t shown, (he also knocks over the paperweight, which is hilarious), and the rest of the votes are super secret.

JPro gets his tally on, then returns. One vote for NaOnka, two votes for Tyrone, one vote for NaOnka, two votes for Tyrone, and the fifth person voted out of “Survivor: Nicaragua” is…Tyrone.

Verdict: First thing’s first; how is Dan still in this game?!

OK, that’s out of the way. I’m not a big fan of tribe swaps, but this season needs something to jump start it. Hopefully this will put it going in the right direction.

Who’s Going to Win? I’m sticking with Brenda until she makes a misstep.

Power Rankings Results:
Yes! Coach and Randy Bailey had Tyrone in spot three while I called it, having Tyrone in spot sixteen. The current score is now Team Dragon Slayer 49, Team Truth Seeker 53.

Follow me on Twitter for breaking “Survivor” news: @gordonholmes

What Do You Think? How do you feel about tribe swaps? Should NaOnka be a teacher? Is there anyone to root for?

‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Power Rankings – Round 4

October 13, 2010

The Rules: Each week, “Survivor: Tocantins” and “Survivor: Heroes Vs. Villains” star Benjamin “Coach” Wade and XFINITY TV’s “Survivor” recapper Gordon Holmes 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 Sash is voted out this week, Coach will receive 11 points and Gordon will receive 10 points. At the end of the season, the person or team with the most points will be named the “Survivor: Nicaragua” Power Rankings Challenge Champion.

Last Week: Marty added another Jimmy to his booting collection by sending Jimmy Tarantino home. Coach and “The King of Gabon” Randy Bailey won the round, having Jimmy T. in spot 16. Gordon was only one point behind as he had him in spot 15.

Now, let’s have a quick word with our competitors…

Benjamin “Coach” Wade: Since the King and I are ahead 3 rounds to nothing, and by 9 points (and since there is a flop in the tribes this week) we are simply flipping a coin and hoping that the “Survivor” Gods smile down favorably upon us. So, if the rankings seem a bit askance, that is the reason. Since there is obviously a tribal switch this week we are simply flipping the list with a flip of a coin and a roll of the dice. And with your luck, Mr. Holmes, you will lose by a larger margin.

Gordon Holmes: With my luck, I’ll break some of my fingers typing up my picks.

Randy Bailey: We also want to give you a chance to catch up so that we are not bored out of our minds by Halloween.

Benjamin “Coach” Wade: Uh oh, I know this better than anyone. “Pride cometh before the fall.” Hope this does not bode ill against our alliance.

And before we start this week’s contest, let’s honor the most recent castaway…


Coach’s Requiem for Jimmy Tarantino: Man, I hated seein’ you go, Jimmy. Keep that mouth shut, wouldya? Whadyatalkinabout!!! BUT…you played with your heart and soul, man. If only I could have coached you out there. Told you to tone it down, let me go in front. I feel ya when you are frustrated with the current leadership. There were so many other dolts on your tribe that if you had just laid low you would have made it past the flop and past the merge. But oh, whata character. You were by far the most interesting guy in the game until now.

The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: No way I can rip another applicant like myself. You would still be in the game if your wife had sewn your lips shut.


Current Score: 46


Current Score: 37

naonka .. alina
#1: She’s got the idol and she’s not goin’ anywhere. And, if “Survivor” doesn’t work out she’s a MMA fighter in the making.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Seeing a bit of a shift in her edit…going from funny cocky to arrogant cocky…she’s got three episodes left.
#1: The people who benefit the most from tribe swaps? Swing votes from dominant tribes like Alina. She could put the former Espadas over vote wise and make a run for it Susie Smith style. (Sorry, Randy. Does that bring up bad memories?)
kellys . benry
#2: Who is this girl and when will we get a sexy confessional out of her?
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Nonexistent edit. We have to hear her speak before she gets voted out.
#2: Blah blah, Benry. What can I say about you? You’re lying low and are performing well in challenges. I’m thinking you’re safe.
tyrone . kellys
#3: This guy has more one-liners than Samuel L. Jackson. I replayed the shot-calling scene with my eyes closed and swore I saw flashbacks of “Pulp Fiction.”
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: He got some people.
#3: Oh, Purple Kelly Purple. You’re physically fit, you’re not threatening to throw prosthetic legs in the fire, you’re a good alliance member. You’re gonna be just fine no matter where you end up.
alina . kellyb
#4: You seem in danger, therefore you are not.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: JP has been telling us for two weeks how much she is in danger. Give me a break.  Mid jury at least.
#4: Hopefully the swap will give Kelly B. a chance to maneuver, cause things haven’t been good for her up to this point. But what does she do, cling to the former La Flors in her new tribe, or be a swing vote and join with the golden oldies?
kellyb . fabio
#5: Time to take off that leg and give NaOnka a beat down because of her mouth.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Kelly and Alina are joined at the hip (no offense, Kelly)…..going with Alina to mid jury.
#5: I’ve been petitioning the producers to allow me to grant immunity idols to players I want to stay in the game. When they finally come through, I’m sending three to Fabio. He cracks me up and is one of a handful of likable players left in this game.
fabio . chase
#6: Still lovin’ this guy. You are too likable to be going anywhere soon.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Perfect alpha male to be killed with a tribal switch, but edit says he is safe.
#6: I think Chase is going to be fine with the swap. Nobody really considers him to be the brains of his alliance, and they’ll want to keep him around for immunity strength.
yve . marty
#7: I want more more more. What’s the edit not showing us? Smarter than we think, I think.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Sorry about the forehead comment last week.
#7: Now that Marty’s number advantage is probably shot, he’d better put that “Daddy” gimmick of his on the back burner. If the whippersnappers think he was the leader of Espada he could be in trouble. However, last week’s preview makes me think he’s safe.
benry . jane
#8: Why weren’t you watching Chase when he went for the idol, and who is your alliance anyway?
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Your domination (or perceived domination) in last week’s challenge is concerning.  Call yourself Ben and I will like you.
#8: Jane didn’t vote with the majority last week. But, lucky for her, that majority is becoming a minority with the swap. Jane’s crafty, she’ll find a way to swing this to her advantage.
jane . naonka
#9: I want to see more survival skills!
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Hope the switch puts you on a tribe with Dan.
#9: I can’t imagine NaOnka’s trademark “fly off the handle at any little thing” strategy will be good for her if she loses her numbers advantage. However, she still has an immunity idol, so she’s safe for a bit.
brenda . sash
#10: Disappointed in how you handled Chase. Gotta get someone to trust you and stick with it, don’t flop before the flop.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Keep a low profile so the attention is on Na…when she gets the boot start playing…I should have taken my own advice after Charlie was booted.
#10: The swap could be bad news for Sash. I’m assuming it’s going to be one tribe of 3 Espadas/5 La Flors and one tribe of 4 Espadas/4 La Flors. Those aren’t good numbers for him. Outsiders like Alina, Kelly B., and Fabio could team with former Espadas to get out from under Sash’s alliance.
sash . brenda
#11: When’s the player going to start playing?
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: You are safe…not sure about gay or straight though…waiting for Charlie to advise me.
#11: (See Sash)
holly . holly
#12: At least you aren’t talking about quitting this time.
King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Time to throw Daniel and Jane under the bus and you will go deep.
#12: I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Holly might be in a good position in the game. The tribe swap could give her the same swing-vote flexibility that Alina has.
chase . yve
#13: Strong alpha males usually get weeded out before the merge.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Reminds me of Aaron from China. The switch could destroy the strongest player in the game right now.
#13: Here’s a behind-the-scenes tidbit from my time in Nicaragua: Yve doesn’t think much of Brenda.  She seemed to be writing Brenda off as a ditzy cheerleader before the game began. Yve should be very wary of Brenda if they end up on the same tribe. Shannon already learned that lesson.
jill . jill
#14: See Marty’s comments below.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: The edit has shown you as playing a great game…let’s hope this is not to show how a switch can kill the best player.
#14: I’m noticing I have mostly Espada members on the bottom of my rankings, but that’s how flops tend to work. If Jill ends up on a tribe that has former Espada members who don’t like how close she is with Marty, she could be in trouble. It’d be a shame for her game to end like that.
marty . dan
#15: You WERE playing an incredible game. One of the smartest guys to play, initially. You are playing like an all-star. But the flop flips everyone.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: Hate to see him go, but it’s possible with the switch.
#15: If Dan doesn’t end up on Marty’s tribe, he’s done. The tribe won’t put up with him not competing in challenges. Only cuties like Courtney Yates can get away with that move.
dan . tyrone
#16: See ya.
The King of Gabon’s Two Cents: “Dude still got ailments.”
#16: Swaps never turn out super-well for strong guys who lose their numbers advantage. I’m thinking specifically of Marcus Lehman from Gabon and Aaron Reisberger from China. Right now Tyrone had better be hoping that the minority alliance is accepting applications.

Quick Note: Follow Gordon on Twitter for breaking “Survivor” news and updates.

What Do You Think: Who’s going to win this round; Team Dragon Slayer or Team Truth Seeker? Are tribe swaps unfair? Is there anyone left to root for this season?

‘Survivor’ Castaway Interview – Jimmy ‘Jimmy T.’ Tarantino

October 7, 2010

“If CBS was ever foolish enough to cast me in ‘Survivor,’ I would make it to the merge…easily.” – Gordon Holmes

I know what you’re thinking, that’s a pretty bold statement. But it’s true. I’ve seen every episode of “Survivor” and know the basic rules by heart; don’t be annoying, don’t be a leader, and don’t call people out. If you’re someone who can be useful in challenges, those three things are basically all you need to guarantee yourself a trip to Mergetown.

So why did Jimmy Tarantino, who is such a big “Survivor” fan that he had his entire town vote him into the game in the Sears Casting Call contest, make these rookie mistakes? I spoke with Jimmy T. the morning after his quick dismissal to find out why he ignored the three “Survivor” commandments, which Espada member is in love with Marty, and what he really thinks of Jimmy Johnson.

Gordon Holmes: How’s it going, Jimmy T.?
Jimmy Tarantino:
Pretty good considering I got smashed last night.
Gordon: Indeed you did. However, it seemed like you picked up on how abrasive you were being during your farewell interview last night. Why didn’t you pick up on that sooner?
Jimmy T.: Jeez, in the game I didn’t think I was doing that, but certainly on TV they’re not going to show the days and days of building the shelter, or providing the food, or the stuff that’s less drama. I’d spend three days working hard, then five minutes after a challenge expressing that, “Hey, we’re not doing too well, why don’t you give me a shot?” But it sure seems like I did a heck of a lot more complaining than I actually did. I was just looking for a chance to right the ship.
Gordon: What could you have done differently in those challenges?
Jimmy T.: There was no question that in the beanbag toss that I would’ve won. I got to throw in ten tosses once I got in there and Tyrone had thrown about fifty. He actually got called out and wouldn’t come out of the game. Then when he finally did, I got about ten tosses and they were the longest tosses. I would’ve won that challenge, that’s a fact.
Gordon: So Jimmy Johnson did call for Tyrone to come out earlier and he wouldn’t come out?
Jimmy T.: There were a couple of times he called him out. He said afterwards that he didn’t hear it. So I yelled real loud, “Tyrone, give someone else a chance!” And he said “Be quiet, Jimmy T.!” So once again they’re portraying me as the squeaky wheel.

Gordon: You got onto the show by winning the Sears Casting Call contest. So, you’re obviously a big fan of the show. If you’re such a big fan, how did you not know that asking for a leadership role is usually a recipe for disaster?
Jimmy T.:
I had the right plan going in. I planned to keep quiet and play it slow. But once I got in the game…I’m a hard-working person. I’m the kind of person who’s going to give 100%. It’s been working for me for 49 years to go in, work hard, and take a leadership role. It’s worked for me for 49 years quite successfully. So, it’s hard to not do that. If you play “Survivor,” you’ve gotta play with your head. And I played with my heart. We had misguided leadership and self-serving leadership and I tried to fight against it even though I knew it wasn’t in my best interest.
Gordon: At Tribal Council when Jeff Probst asked if you’d be willing to take a non-leadership role, you seemed very emotionally upset. Why did you take that so personally?
Jimmy T.: At that point I thought that I was going home no matter what happened. And I was overwhelmed with the fact that I had blown this opportunity. My family, my friends, everyone who had voted for me, I felt like I had let them down. So, at that point I was willing to say what I had to say to not get the vote.

Gordon: When we were in Nicaragua, you said your entire town had voted to get you into “Survivor.” I’m thinking this means you must be a popular fellow. Why didn’t that popularity translate into the game?
Jimmy T.:
I know why it didn’t translate into the game. The game of “Survivor” isn’t like real life. If you do something nice for somebody in real life, they say, “Wow, that’s a nice guy. He’s considerate and thoughtful.”  But if you do something nice for somebody in “Survivor” they get on the defensive. You’re trying to help them start a fire and they’re like, “I know, I can do it!” They feel like you’re trying to show them up. Every act of kindness was resented. Marty accused me of being paranoid, but I think I was a victim of everybody else’s insecurities.
Gordon: So, if you played the game again you’d play it NaOnka-syle?
Jimmy T.: Absolutely not. If I play the game again, and I intend to play the game again because I have the skills and the color, the best thing to do is get in the back of the bus and let the other people drive it off the cliff and jump off right before it goes off the cliff.

Gordon: Speaking of someone who’s driving the bus off the cliff, did you have any idea that Marty and Jill were the power players within Espada?
Jimmy T.:
Jill and I had an alliance from the very beginning that she wanted out of. She turned on me like a junkyard dog. I think she fell in love with Marty and from there on did whatever he said. You can see in the last couple of weeks she’ll express an idea and Marty shoots it down. He doesn’t want to hear another word about it and she says, “Whatever you say, you’re the puppet master.” So how can you go up against that?
Gordon: When I met Jill in Nicaragua she didn’t strike me as much of a follower. Do you think she could be playing Marty?
Jimmy T.: Absolutely not. She definitely isn’t playing him. When he talks in the tribe he was calm and collected and Jill bought it hook, line, and sinker. I remember pre-challenges her saying, “Marty can do it! How about Marty? Marty’d be good at that!” She was in love with Marty. I remember saying in the side interviews, “I hope Jill’s husband isn’t seeing this footage because she’s falling in love with this guy.”
Gordon: OK, when you originally said “falling in love” I thought you meant like when a male and female will form a non-romantic alliance like Russell and Parvati in “Survivor: Heroes Vs. Villains.” Do you really think Jill has a crush on Marty?
Jimmy T.: I really think she was smitten with him, absolutely. Watch the last shows and look at it in that way. One person in “Survivor” says, “I figured out the clue, go get it.” Who does that? And he says, “I don’t want to hear another word about it.” It’s like he’s scolding his wife and she says, “OK, you’re the puppet master.”
Gordon: Do you think she can’t resist his sweet haircut?
Jimmy T.: (Laughs) Definitely not the ‘do, man! Even my nasty locks weren’t as bad as his mad scientist look.

Gordon: It wasn’t a unanimous vote last night. Did you have any kind of alliance with Holly and Jane?
Jimmy T.:
Yeah, they haven’t shown much of Jane. But she was genuine, she was a great worker. We were good friends. She told me she had an alliance with Holly and they weren’t tricked as much as the others to follow the bad leadership. Marty just wanted to keep his hand on the wheel. He can accuse me of being paranoid, but he was afraid I’d start winning challenges.
Gordon: Speaking of Holly, were there any repercussions that came out of her sinking Dan’s shoes? Because in the past something like that is a one-way ticket home.
Jimmy T.: (Laughs) When she first did it, everyone thought she was the next target. But we won that next challenge and you know how quickly things change in the game. In ten minutes things can change. And please make a note of that miraculous ricochet shot I hit to Tyrone (in the Hay Mate challenge) to save the line drive Marty hit to me with the shields. I don’t know if anybody saw that, but that never got any play time either.

Gordon: Will do. Alright, it’s time for you to join the proud pantheon of those who have participated in “Survivor” word association. Let’s start this off with Marty.
Jimmy T.:
Self serving.
Gordon: Dan?
Jimmy T.: Weak.
Gordon: Holly?
Jimmy T.: Sincere but…Holly’s a tough one to figure out. Holly’s a good person but she’s flighty and easily upset. Watch her blink when she talks, she’s a very nervous person.
Gordon: Yve?
Jimmy T.: Yve is sad. Yve’s got a lot of baggage.
Gordon: Jimmy J.?
Jimmy T.: (Laughs) I don’t want to be mean! Everybody talks about his leadership, but that was 20 years ago. Right now he’s a haircut and a tie and a face that doesn’t have a lot of sincerity.
Gordon: Jane?
Jimmy T.: Real.
Gordon: Jill?
Jimmy T.: Pompous.
Gordon: Tyrone?
Jimmy T.: Tyrone a little more complex than one word. He’s a good person with good intentions.

Gordon: What has been the reaction around your town regarding your time on “Survivor”?
Jimmy T.:
It’s been incredible. I never was on Facebook, I’m kind of a caveman, I don’t have a cell phone. But I have a lot of friends in the community. The outpouring has been incredible. And on Facebook every second I get a new message, “We love you, Jimmy T.,” “We love you,” “Great job, you stayed true to who you are,” “Screw Marty, I’d like to beat his…” Every second, faster than every second there’s been support and love from my community.

Gordon: What do you take from your time in Nicaragua?
Jimmy T.:
If I take anything from this experience, it’s the love from my friends, family, and everyone in the community.

Twitter: Follow me on Twitter for “Survivor” news and more – @gordonholmes

‘Survivor: Nicaragua’ Episode 4 Recap: Lead, Follow, or Whine About It

October 6, 2010

Last Week: Benry completed ten passes to lead La Flor to victory, NaOnka nailed Kelly B. with an illegal chop block, and Marty pulled a quarterback sneak that sent Jimmy Johnson to the showers.

39 Days, 20 People, 1 “Survivor” Blog

Here are the tribes as they currently stand…

The La Flor Tribe aka The Young Tribe (wearing yellow)

•    Alina – 23, Art Student
•    Benry – 24, Club Promoter
•    Brenda – 27, Paddleboard Company Owner
•    Chase – 24, Race Car Jackman/Country Singer
•    Fabio – 21, Student
•    Kelly B. – 26, Medical Student
•    Kelly S. – 20, Nursing Student
•    NaOnka – 27, P.E. Teacher
•    Sash – 30, Real Estate Broker

The Espada Tribe aka The Older Tribe (wearing blue)

•    Dan – 63, Real Estate Executive
•    Holly – 44, Swim Coach
•    Jane – 56, Dog Trainer
•    Jill – 43, E.R. Doctor
•    Jimmy T. – 48, Commercial Fisherman
•    Marty – 48, Technology Executive
•    Tyrone – 42, Fire Captain
•    Yve – 41, Homemaker

We meet up with the elders after Tribal Council. The rain is falling and everyone looks miserable. This doesn’t stop Jimmy T. from using some football analogies to explain why they were right to get rid of Jimmy J. It also doesn’t stop him from butchering Tom Petty’s “An American Girl” and annoying the rest of the tribe.

Marty lets us know that all you need to do is give Jimmy T. enough rope and he’ll hang himself. If this is true, I’m taking up a collection right now to buy Jimmy T. enough rope.

Note: Did you know “Survivor” wasn’t going in three-day increments anymore? You learn something new every day.

The following morning, the “Survivor” foreshadowing crew shows how rocky and tumultuous the Nicaraguan sea has become. Surely, rough times are ahead for the seventeen remaining Survivors.

Dan is having a rough time as his sneakers are starting to fall apart. He also says if they get any hungrier they’ll have to eat his foot. Smart strategy as I doubt he could get much slower in challenges.

Meanwhile on “Kid Nation,” (oh wait, that’s La Flor’s camp) NaOnka has made her first smart move of the season and has given Brenda the clue so she can decipher it. Brenda, again proving that my pre-game impression of her was totally off base, figures out the clue and uncovers the idol. NaOnka hides the idol in her sock…which is actually Fabio’s sock. So…maybe the idol is technically his?

NaOnka also threatens to throw Kelly B.’s prosthetic leg into the fire. Jaison Robinson is still bitter that Russell Hantz burned his socks, imagine if Russell had burned his whole leg.

Kelly B. and Alina go looking for the idol on their own. NaOnka knows their search will be fruitless, but decides to mess with them anyways. NaOnka confronts the duo and starts talking trash. Her goal in all of this is apparently to get Kelly B. to quit so she won’t become a member of the jury. She may also be trying to get Kelly B.’s lunch money.

That night we meet up with Espada as they’re having a team meeting. Marty introduces an action item that nominates Tyrone as the team leader at challenges. Shockingly, Jimmy T. has a problem with this.

Quick Aside: Marty’s hair is awesome. It’s like no two hairs go in the same direction.

In a confessional, Jimmy T. tells us how easygoing he is. He then proves how easygoing he is by calling Marty a “preppy, little b—h.”

The following morning we see a very depressing sight as the howler monkeys are calling out…and there’s no Jimmy J. to respond to them. Sad.

Reward and Immunity Challenge: One person from each tribe will be calling out directions while the rest of the tribe is blindfolded. The blindfolded players will have to retrieve 10 items and return them to the tribe’s mat. Once the team has all 10 items, they’ll have to send a pair of blindfolded players out to find a set of keys. Those keys will unlock a chest. First team to unlock their chest and return it to the mat wins immunity and three groups of items from Sears.

Sears: Life. Well Spent.

The Sears items include tools, a tarp, fishing kits, and an XBox 360.

I may have made that last item up.

Medallion of Power Advantage:
If the MoP is used, La Flor will start with two items on their mat. La Flor elects to use the mystical power of the MoP.

Dan will sit out for Espada while the two Kellys will sit out for La Flor. (Aww…that’s one Kelly short of my favorite Woody Boyd song.)

Three “Survivor” points for whoever gets that reference.

Note: “Survivor” points have no cash value.

Brenda will be the caller for La Flor, Tyrone will be the caller for Espada.

True to form with all “Survivor” blindfold challenges, there are some spectacular wipeouts. Fabio and Marty in particular find themselves eating Nicaraguan soil.

The challenge starts off, and La Flor jumps out to a huge lead. Tyrone is getting very frustrated as it seems like Jimmy T. isn’t listening to him. Brenda must be doing something right, because the youngsters retrieve all of their items well ahead of Espada. After that, Chase and Sash seem to have little trouble retrieving the keys and their tribe’s chest. La Flor wins immunity and reward. They choose the fishing gear, a tarp, and kitchen supplies.

During the post-game wrap up, Jimmy T. again complains about not being used enough in the challenges. How Tyrone doesn’t stand up and smack him upside the head, I’ll never know.

Back at La Flor, Chase discovers a hidden immunity clue in the tackle box. He decides to share it with Brenda because he trusts her. She obviously trusts him so much that he has no clue that it has already been found. She eventually fesses up and tells Chase that NaOnka has the idol.

Politicking around Espada centers around Jimmy T. vs. Dan. Holly, Tyrone, and Jane both want Dan to go home. They like him, but worry that he’s a weak link in challenges. Jill wants Dan to go home too, but Marty argues that Dan is their swing vote.

Meanwhile, Jimmy T. is making the case that he isn’t getting enough play in the immunity challenges…again. Yve humors him but lets us know that she wouldn’t coddle her kids as much as she just coddled Jimmy T. Oh…mom burn!

That night at Tribal Council, Tyrone tells JPro that he thinks their immunity challenge plan worked out well. Probst immediately calls him on this.  Oh…3-time Emmy-winning host burn!

Dan tells us that his knee won’t allow him to perform in the mud. Probst points out that they’re currently in a rainforest. Man, JPro is on fire tonight.

Jimmy T. argues that the tribe should mix things up. Shockingly, his idea of mixing it up involves putting him in charge of an immunity challenge. Marty tells Probst that he isn’t interested in having Jimmy T. lead a challenge.

Holly actually has Jimmy T.’s back and thinks he deserves a chance. Too bad Holly hasn’t been super high on this season’s sanity scale.

Probst asks Jimmy T. if he’s willing to take a non-leadership role. Jimmy T. looks like he’s about to cry, but eventually agrees to fall in line.

Voting Time: Holly votes for Dan (and apologizes for sinking his shoes), Dan votes for Jimmy T., Jimmy T. votes for Dan, Marty votes for Jimmy T., and the rest of the votes are lost to the magic of editing.

Probsty does his tallying thing and returns. Three votes for Dan, four votes for Jimmy T., and the fourth person voted out of “Survivor: Nicaragua” is…Jimmy T.

Verdict: OK, Jimmy T. got onto the show by winning the Sears Put Me on “Survivor” Contest (that’s probably not the official name). So obviously, he’s got to be a big fan of the show. That being said, how did he not know his annoying ways were going to lead to a quick dismissal? And while we’re on this topic, Jimmy T. won that contest because he got his entire town to vote for him. So, he must be a popular guy. Why didn’t that translate into “Survivor”? Or, is it possible his town voted for him because they knew it would get him out of town for a few months?

As far as the show goes, this episode was pretty dull. The “Hurricane NaOnka” we were promised in the preview was barely a tropical depression. And are we ever going to see separate reward challenges again?

Who’s Going to Win?
Brenda’s a machine. She has a strong alliance, she has NaOnka and Chase’s full trust, she can decipher immunity clues, she led La Flor to an immunity victory, she looks awesome in a yellow bikini…

Power Rankings Results: Coach and Randy Bailey win another round. They had Jimmy T. in spot sixteen while I had him in spot fifteen. The current score is now Team Dragon Slayer 46, Team Truth Seeker 37.

Follow me on Twitter for breaking “Survivor” news: @gordonholmes

What Do You Think? Would you have voted for Dan or Jimmy T.? Has NaOnka gone too far with her bullying? What affect do you think next week’s tribe swap will have on the game?

‘Survivor’ Castaway Interview – Jimmy Johnson

September 30, 2010

Note: You can’t tell from this post’s picture, but Jeff Probst’s heart is actually breaking as he snuffs that torch.

NFL Legend Jimmy Johnson has wanted to be on “Survivor” his whole life. No, I don’t suck at math. I know that Jimmy Johnson is 67 years old and “Survivor” just turned 10. But, Jimmy has been dreaming of a “Survivor”-style adventure since he was young enough to be a member of La Flor.

The good news for Jimmy? He got to live out one of his life-long dreams.

The bad news for Jimmy? It only lasted for three episodes.

I spoke with Jimmy the morning after Marty and his alliance sent him packing. We discussed his rocky relationship with that other Jimmy, how he begrudgingly became Espada’s leader and how Fox NFL analyst Terry Bradshaw would do in a sandbag-tossing challenge.

Gordon Holmes: Too soon, Jimmy.
Jimmy Johnson:
I understand. I didn’t want to talk to you this soon either. (Laughs)

Gordon: What’s been the reaction from the Fox Sports team?
Jimmy J.:
Actually, they’re all disappointed. I thought I’d get a lot of ribbing, but more than anything they wanted to see me go further. They’re irritated that Marty put together the group to vote me off.
Gordon: How do you think Terry Bradshaw would have done in last night’s sandbag tossing challenge?
Jimmy J.: Terry could have won the whole thing. (Laughs) If we had Terry tossing those bags I wouldn’t be talking to you today.

Gordon: Now, I’d imagine you’ve been hearing people say, “Put me in the game, Coach” your entire life. However, I’m assuming it’s never been more annoying than to hear those words coming out of Jimmy T.’s mouth.
Jimmy J.:
Well, Jimmy’s kind of a volatile person and he obviously wanted to play a bigger part in the challenges. And it just didn’t work out that way. Tyrone was going to take most of the shots, but Jimmy T. kept on bugging me and bugging me. So, we threw him in there. That’s just his personality. Some of the tribe members wanted to vote Jimmy T. off the first week, but I convinced them to keep him for the simple reason that I thought there might be some physical challenges down the road.
Gordon: Did you know Jimmy T. was gunning for you?
Jimmy J.: No, I knew that he didn’t think that we had a great relationship, although I thought personally he was fine. I think he wanted to be a little more out front than what he was and what the other tribe members wanted him to be.
Gordon: They didn’t show this, but during the gutter challenge in the first episode, Jimmy T. was trying to distract the La Flor puzzle team by yelling instructions at them. This seemed to annoy you. Did I read your reaction right?
Jimmy J.: Yeah, I always felt like we needed to concentrate on what we needed to do and not worry about the opponent. But, like I said, Jimmy T.’s a volatile person and he’s going to be hollering things at our tribe, their tribe, anyone who’s around there.

Gordon: Marty was the one who pulled the strings to get you out of there last night. Did you have any idea that he was behind your early exit?
Jimmy J.:
No, that was a real surprise because Marty and I had talked on numerous occasions. And I thought that Jill and him had an alliance but I didn’t realize Daniel was in there at all. I tried to convince them, I told them, “Nothing would make me happier than to see one of you win the million dollars. I’m not going to win the million dollars. So I can help you win.” I tried to convince them that I wasn’t a threat, but Marty still felt like I was a threat.

Gordon: When we spoke before the game, you described your strategy that nobody would vote for you to win the million. Do you think it hurt your case that Sandra Diaz-Twine used a similar strategy to win “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains”?
Jimmy J.:
I don’t know if the previous episodes had anything to do with it.

Gordon: What would you have done differently?
Jimmy J.:
I think that some of the women on our tribe had started to come around to my way of thinking. And even though I didn’t have an alliance with them I could have gotten one with them, and in hindsight probably should have. I tried to make it through the beginning of the game without an alliance, but that didn’t work for me.

Gordon: You mentioned during your final statement that being on “Survivor” was more stressful than being in the Super Bowl. I think that’s a pretty strong statement.
Jimmy J.:
You’ve got to take into account that I’m 67 years old, so it’s more taxing than it’d be on a younger person. But the biggest thing that affected me was not having any sleep. It was so difficult with the pouring down rain, and our shelter leaking, and sleeping on bamboo. Not getting any sleep really bothered me. And I lost 18 pounds in that short period of time.

Gordon: You told me before the game that you were going to do your best to avoid the leader role. That didn’t seem to work out.
Jimmy J.:
I got thrown into it. In “Survivor” the people out front, the leaders are usually the first voted out. I told everybody, “I don’t want to be the leader. I don’t want to be the boss.” And after a couple of days there were arguments about the shelter and which way to do this and which way to do that and they said, “You’ve at least got to help us make decisions.” I said, “I’ll help you make some of the decisions, but you’ll have to contribute ideas. I’m not going to be the boss of this tribe.”
Gordon: Now were you a born leader or is this something that developed as you made your way through the ranks of college and pro football?
Jimmy J.:
I think it just came through the years. I was the first one in my family to get a college education, and even in high school we had a very successful team where I had my first individual successes. So I guess it started back in high school.

Gordon: You’ve dreamed of doing an adventure like “Survivor” for you entire life. How did it live up to your expectations?
Jimmy J.:
It was everything that I thought it was going to be and more. But it was more difficult than I thought it was going to be. I thoroughly enjoyed the adventure. I think it’s made me a bigger “Survivor” fan now than I was before the experience. But there’s no way in the world that you can watch it on television and really feel the impact of how difficult it really is. No sleep, no food, cold at night and hot in the day…it really wears you down.

Gordon: You spent nine days on a beach with next to nothing. What do you take back from that experience that you can apply to your everyday life?
Jimmy J.:
I think the biggest thing is my appreciation for what we have. And an understanding for what people around the world (and even in this country) don’t have. When people don’t have plenty of food and proper housing…it makes me appreciate the luxuries we have here.

Gordon: OK, time for our first-ever round of celebrity word association. Let’s start with Yve.
Jimmy J.:
Gordon: Marty?
Jimmy J.: Conniving.
Gordon: Jill?
Jimmy J.: Smart.
Gordon: Tyrone?
Jimmy J.: Hardworking.
Gordon: Dan?
Jimmy J.: Hmm…maybe that says something about Dan, I can’t think of a word for him. He’s just there.
Gordon: Jane?
Jimmy J.: Impressive.
Gordon: Holly?
Jimmy J.: Emotional.
Gordon: Jimmy T.?
Jimmy J.: Volatile.

Gordon: Benjamin “Coach” Wade and I have been ranking the players each week, and for two weeks in a row he’s made it clear that there is only one “Coach” on “Survivor.” Do you have a response to that comment?
Jimmy J.:
I went to “Survivor” as Jimmy J., not as “Coach.”

Gordon: Did you ever figure out what those howler monkeys were trying to say to you?
Jimmy J.:
(Laughs) That was one of the more fun times, because the monkeys were fairly quiet until I started hollering at them.
Gordon: And given the choice between conversing with howler monkeys and Jimmy T., which would you prefer?
Jimmy J.: The howler monkey usually made more sense.

Quick Note: You can follow me on Twitter for “Survivor” updates at @gordonholmes.

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