Skip to comments.Survivor: Tocantins
Posted on 02/06/2009 5:48:05 PM PST by JillValentine
Premiers Thursday, February 12 @ 8 PM EST/PST on SeeBS
16 new contestants will compete for the $1 million prize in the highlands of Brazil.
Who will be the Sole Survivor?
Greetings, fellow Survivor fans! Here's your new season's Survivor ping, from your hostess, Jill Probst.
I mean Valentine.
The contestants, from left to right:
Timbira (blue) Tribe: Erinn, Ben, Sierra, Jerry, Candace, Tyson, Debra, Brendan.
Jalapao (red) Tribe: Sydney, Stephen, Joe, Taj, Sandy, Carolina, Spencer, James "JT"
Jeff Probst has said that there are a lot of likable contestants this season and that it will be "nothing like Gabon." This could avoid a lot of ugliness and make it unlikely that an unlikable person will win...but it could also make for dull television. We'll see.
Looking forward to the new season.
Can you add me to the ping list please?
Ping to NYT
Name: Ben Wade
Hometown: Bolivar, Missouri
Occupation: Soccer Coach
Benjamin Wade is known by many names. As the head women's soccer coach at the Southwest Baptist University in Missouri, he is called "Coach Wade," but he also goes by Maestro due to role as an artistic director and conductor of a California symphony orchestra. A skilled musician, Benjamin was traveling the world playing the trumpet before most kids could even spell "trumpet."
Wade sees coaching as another form of manipulation. "You have to find out what everybody wants, what everybody needs, what they think they want, what think they need and then you have to be the person that solves everything." He knows these skills will be valuable in the game of SURVIVOR.
If Benjamin was asked to wear just one hat, it would be that of "Renaissance Man." Aside from setting the world record for the longest solo kayak expedition on the ocean (an amazing 6,132 miles), Wade has also been attacked by a tiger shark, stalked by a jaguar in the Amazon and has been bitten by a piranha on his right hand. To say that he is a Type A, Alpha male, who likes to control the environment around him may just be an understatement. Coach's dominant personality will be a force to be reckoned with in the game. He is disappointed with weak people making it to the finals in previous Survivor seasons and wants to make an alliance of strong players to take to the end.
Benjamin is single and currently splits his time in Bolivar, Mo, and Susanville, Calif.
Name: Brendan Synnott
Hometown: New York City
Brendan Synnott is all about playing the game. Whether it is in front of a classroom teaching entrepreneurial success or taking part in outdoor extreme adventures, he knows how to read the odds.
Raised by a single mom in Connecticut, Brendan pulled himself up by the bootstraps to be the co-founder and CEO of Bear Naked, a natural food brand that was recently acquired by a major corporation. Despite his financial success, he is not all about the money.
Success to him, however, is about more than simply creating, building and selling a thriving business; it's about hard work, passion, fun and surrounding yourself with the best people.
Synnott has always wanted to combine his love of the outdoors with his skills as a leader. In school, he played both football and baseball, and still stays active as much as possible. He loves to compete and says it's a driving force, even in business. It will especially be a driving force on SURVIVOR.
Brendan is single and currently resides in Vail, Colo.
Name: Candace Smith
Hometown: Dayton, Ohio
Candace Smith grew up as a tomboy and athlete, competing in soccer, basketball and track. She lacks fear or inhibition and is always ready to take on new challenges. This sexy former Miss Ohio USA has both beauty and brains, making her a real threat to her competitors.
Candace prides herself in having both book and street smarts. Growing up in the inner city of Dayton, Ohio, Candace worked hard to receive a full academic scholarship to the University of Dayton. She went on to graduate from Northwestern University School of Law and began working as a commercial real estate attorney. After becoming Miss Ohio USA, she decided to move to L.A. to pursue other aspirations, including modeling, acting and opening her own consulting firm.
Although Candace no longer practices law, she still utilizes her legal skills in everyday life. As an attorney, she mastered the skills of mental combat and knows how to create a strong bargaining position, which will certainly come in handy on SURVIVOR. Candace has also learned how to relate to many different types of people from traveling all over the world, including England, Spain and Cuba. Aside from traveling, she also enjoys running, cooking and writing. She is currently working on a book of her memoirs.
While friends describe her as resilient, funny and overall positive, she admits she is brutally honest by nature and can come across as a bitch, which may cause her problems with her tribe. Although she knows how to negotiate and be diplomatic, she has a difficult time socializing with phony people. To win this game, she knows she'll have to be able to bite her tongue because she knows what's at risk. A victory would help provide the children in her family with funds for education and she hopes that a strong mix of athleticism and work ethic will take her to the end.
Candace is single and currently resides in Los Angeles, Calif.
Name: Debra Beebe
Hometown: Auburn, Alabama
Occupation: Middle School Principal
A self-described people person, Debra Beebe is a middle school principal and married mom from Auburn, Alabama who believes that her natural leadership abilities and tactful problem-solving skills will contribute to her success as a castaway on SURVIVOR. Debra, also known as "Bubbles," feels that her enthusiastic and energetic personality, in addition to her take-charge attitude, will erase any doubts about her ability to succeed in this game.
The fact that she is one of the older castaways will not be a hindrance for this woman who previously trained alongside Olympic athletes and still rises every morning at 4:30AM to get in her daily workout before tackling a day filled with hundreds of pubescent teens, pre-teens, parents, faculty and staff. Not one to be intimidated (even at a tiny 52), Debra juggles work, her husband and her children. Its no surprise that this go-getter won Alabamas Principal of the Year award yet still finds occasional free time for shopping and dancing.
Debra feels that her occupation has taught her how to deal with politics which she can apply to the group dynamics of her tribe. With her abilities as a natural leader combined with her bossy and competitive nature, Debra plans to focus on the weaknesses of others in an effort to get them eliminated.
Debra is married with five children and currently resides in Auburn, Ala.
Name: Erinn Lobdell
Hometown: Waukesha, Wisconsin
Erinn Lobdell is a hairstylist and make-up artist who is out to prove she's not just another pretty face. After recently going through a very personal growing experience, Erinn is ready to prove that she can make it on her own and rise to the challenge SURVIVOR will bring.
"A lot of times I've found that people don't think I'm smart enough to play games." says Erinn. Although she's fine with people thinking she's dumb because, according to her, "she'll be dumb like a fox." Those people couldn't be more wrong as she is ready to show off her strong people skills as well as her ability to read the faces of her competition. Through skills learned at her job, she's been able to adjust her behavior depending on the situation which can serve as a great strategy in the game.
As a runner, Erinn is very athletic and is constantly training for the next big event. She recently completed training for a marathon and works out everyday to stay in great shape. To her, SURVIVOR will be a very enriching experience and she is certain she will excel.
Erinn currently resides in Milwaukee, Wis.
Name: Jerry Sims
Hometown: Rock Hill, South Carolina
Occupation: U.S. Army Sergeant
Jerry Sims promises, "you've never seen anybody like me before." Growing up in a poor family, he was one of 10 children who had to learn, very early on, the skills to help him survive in the real world. Jerry has been passing on those survival skills learned from his childhood to soldiers in the Army National Guard for the last 20 years.
A 1st Sergeant and specialist in Nuclear Operations, Sims just recently returned from a tour of duty in Afghanistan. No stranger to being in a leadership position, Sims was in charge of 100 men and not only knew how to manage them, but also earned their respect. "With this big smile and this convincing attitude, I get them to do exactly what I want them to do!"
He's always been a strong proponent of the team concept, a skill that came in handy growing up in such a large household, especially around dinner time "where you had to be on time!" Jerry is also a family man, who's been married for 25 years and has both an adult son and daughter. He has no qualms about saying he's doing this for the money. "The million is in my grasp! I've got to have it. I'm a competitor. I like to win. I like to win, win, win!"
Raised on a chicken farm in South Carolina, Jerry also knows how to live off the land and involve everyone in the daily chores. This self-proclaimed jokester says he will give his fellow castaways some much need entertainment, but nobody should misinterpret his cheery personality for weakness because Jerry proudly proclaims, "I am physically fit, I am mentally strong and I'm ready for the million."
Jerry currently resides in Rock Hill, SC.
Name: Sierra Reed
Hometown: Los Angeles
Sierra Reed wants to make it clear right off the bat that she has the ability to find her place in any situation, anywhere in the world, through her perseverance and strength. Despite the fact that she is strong-willed and determined, she is one who will wear her heart on her sleeve. Not intimidated by age, ("I'm 25 and if you're 45 that's great, but if we have differences, I'm going to let you know"), Reed will speak her mind, yet she does it with purpose and passion. She hopes that her tenacity will balance out her "strong nature."
This fashion student and model is no stranger to roughing it. After moving to Taiwan by herself at a very young age, Sierra is used to living in places with no running water and filled with grime and bugs. Sierra is a self-proclaimed adventure junkie who "loves to experience new things all the time" and she believes that those experiences make her a prime candidate for SURVIVOR.
Sierra claims she isn't a "very stereotypical model," because she doesn't do it for the notoriety; she does it because modeling can help facilitate new experiences and allows for travel to amazing locations which is something she enjoys tremendously.
Her modeling background has helped to shape her strategy for the game. Forced to deal with a variety of personalities all competing for the same goal is nothing new to her, having lived with five catty models vying for one spot. This experience will be to her advantage when forming alliances and making her way through the twists of the game.
Sierra is single and currently resides in Los Angeles, Calif.
Name: Tyson Apostol
Hometown: Lindon, Utah
Occupation: Bike Shop Manager
Witty, charming and arrogant is how Tyson Apostol describes himself. This former pro-cyclist and swimmer believes that his natural athleticism, combined with his "life of the party" personality, will get him far in he game. His favorite movie is "The Jerk" and thats how some people just might describe him.
He compares his game strategy to that of some of the most entertaining castaways to ever play the game. Much like them, he is willing to do almost anything to win one million dollars, including implementing the use of lies and deceit to feed off the "emotional weakness" of the other castaways. A Brigham Young University drop-out, he is actually very well traveled and skilled in street smarts, previously spending two years in the Philippines as a Mormon missionary, in addition to six years as a cyclist in Switzerland, Belgium and Austria.
In many ways Tyson can be brash, egotistical and unapologetic but, oddly enough, he has no tolerance for "know-it-alls" or individuals who lack common courtesy. In addition to, as he describes it, "looking awesome," his favorite hobbies are exercising and sunbathing. If he becomes the next sole SURVIVOR, he plans to use all of the money for selfish purposes, starting with "the most smoking motorcycle around."
Tyson currently resides in Heber City, Utah.
Thanks for the ping.
This show is like candy for the brain ;)
Thanks for all your work on these threads. I usually record the show to watch later, but enjoy the recaps and speculation and rumors, etc.
They’re running previews on the TV Guide Channel, and they introduce all the players. I’m ready!
Name: Carolina Eastwood
Hometown: West Hollywood, California
Born in Panama, Carolina spent the first six years of her life living in poverty until her father, an Army solider, moved the family to the Untied States so he could have the opportunity to provide a better life for them. Despite the adversity that Carolina has faced throughout her life, she has a positive outlook and views those difficulties as learning experiences that have pushed her to become the trash-talking firecracker and SURVIVOR of life that she is today.
Three years ago, with only $250 in her pocket, Carolina made the move from Florida to Los Angeles to accomplish personal goals and to fulfill her desire to help provide for her family. Life has not been easy for this California bartender but rather than succumbing to the negative pressures, she decided to face her inner demons and live life with a positive, compassionate outlook.
Carolina describes the relationship with her mother as an emotional rollercoaster but admires the woman that was able to overcome adversity and become a self-sufficient mother of three. Her mother has shown Carolina what dreams are made of by giving her a life that would have been impossible in Panama.
While her game strategy is still a work-in-progress, Carolina knows that the lessons learned from her life experiences have provided her with tools that may get her far in this game. If she becomes the next sole SURVIVOR, Carolina plans to give back to her mother, help her brothers with school, and donate to various organizations that aid victims of rape and domestic violence.
In her free time she enjoys spending time with friends and participating in outdoor activities such as surfing, snowboarding and hiking with her dogs, Sandy and Zoe.
Carolina currently resides in West Hollywood, Calif.
Name: James "JT" Thomas Jr.
Hometown: Samson, Alabama
Occupation: Cattle Rancher
A cattle manager raised in Samson, Alabama, JT operates a registered Angus Cattle Ranch. In addition to preparing the land and working the cattle, this southern charmer is responsible for all the paperwork and marketing associated with running the business.
This ambitious 24-year-old gets fired up when people insult his intelligence and says "I'm not a dumb hillbilly, so dont think it!" However, this may be just the strategy that JT chooses to use and isnt above playing the dumb and innocent country boy role in an effort to gain alliances with the women. JT attended Troy University and is the first in his family to earn a Bachelors Degree. His is in business administration.
A true family man, JT values his relationships and will work towards forming alliances that will take him very far in the game. This strong country boy is competitive and determined and will use manipulation in order to help him succeed and ultimately win SURVIVOR.
JT is single and currently resides in Mobile, Ala.
Name: Joe Dowdle
Hometown: Austin, Texas
Occupation: Real Estate Sales
This 26-year-old southern gentleman and savvy businessman was raised in a single parent household along with his sister. Joe is eternally grateful to his mother for all the sacrifices she made while he was growing up. He currently works in real estate investment sales and enjoys spending his free time strumming his guitar, tossing around a football and hanging out with friends. He is definitely a man who takes pride in hard work and being a Texan.
Joe truly is a genuine Texas Cowboy. After a rigorous selection process in combination with a high GPA from the University of Texas at Austin, he was selected to join the Texas Cowboys, which is a service organization where members act as ambassadors for, according to Joe, "the greatest university in the world," the University of Texas. When he is not working or volunteering his time, Joe enjoys playing basketball and golf in addition to spending time working out and running.
He feels that he will be the next person to win SURVIVOR because he is dedicated, goal oriented and plans to use a strategy he calls "persuade and evade." He intends to constantly look for alliances and win challenges, all while staying just below the radar. He doesn't like overly dramatic people and hates to lose. Unfortunately he may be faced with both in his attempt to become the next sole SURVIVOR.
Joe Dowdle is single and resides in Austin, Texas.
Name: Sandy Burgin
Hometown: Louisville, Kentucky
Occupation: Bus Driver
A country girl through and through, Sandy Burgin grew up and still lives in Kentucky, where she takes pride in being the state champion of the School Bus Rodeo. A night owl by occupation, Sandy works the graveyard shift transporting construction workers to their work sites. As a professional driver for 30 years, she isn't a stranger to cat calls, especially since she is the one doing it. On one occasion she called out to a tall thin man, commenting on his physique when, to her surprise, he turned around and was clearly a priest!
She likes to unwind by crocheting or listening to country, oldies or some good old fashioned rock and roll. Her penchant for reading "do it yourself" magazines in addition to her fishing skills just might make her a valuable member of her tribe.
Sandy describes herself as funny and fearless and cant stand mean or greedy people. She is looking forward to interacting with new and interesting people and is thrilled at the opportunity to win a million dollars. With an outdoorsy nature (as reflected by her mouse tattoo) and a kooky personality, in combination with her determination to win, Sandy feels that she has what it takes to be the next SURVIVOR.
Sandy currently resides in Louisville, Ky.
Name: Spencer Duhm
Hometown: Lakeland, Florida
Soon to see his teenage years in the rear-view mirror, Spencer Duhm is ready to look forward to the journey ahead of him. A fan of SURVIVOR since day one, which began when he was still in grade school, Spencer can practically do a Castaway roll-call all the way from SURVIVOR: Borneo. His fanaticism will give him a built-in edge that can make a direct contribution to how far he goes in this game.
Born and raised in Lakeland, Florida and currently a student at the University of Florida, Spencer majors in telecommunications and minors in business and European union studies. Aside from being the recruitment chair for his UF crew team, where he also rows competitively, Spencer is a huge sports fan. Involved in myriad athletic activities since age 7, Spencer has developed a strong competitive streak and determination to achieve success. Rooting for his college Gators or beloved Cubs familiarized him with all of the peaks and valleys associated with being a contender, which may help him navigate the ups and downs associated with castaway life.
With a resume like his, its no surprise that this self-professed lover of "water cooler gossip" can't stand slow-talkers or laziness and is very ambitious and very outgoing. He is even willing to face his fear of heights for one million dollars but there is one fear that he refuses to face. When asked what he would not do for a million dollars he responded, "Snakes in general, I just dont do snakes." This young, goal-oriented man has been presented with his childhood dream of competing on his favorite reality show and truly feels that he has what it takes to become the next sole SURVIVOR.
Spencer is a gay, single man and currently resides in Gainesville, Fla.
Name: Stephen Fishbach
Hometown: New York City
Occupation: Corporate Consultant
Stephen Fishbach believes he's a cutthroat player who can manipulate his way to SURVIVOR success, though you couldn't tell that by looking at his non-threatening appearance. The first one to tell you he resembles a Muppet, Stephen plans to sidetrack his competition with his goofy charm and quirky sense of humor.
Aided by his quick wit and prankster personality, this Internet marketing director could very well be a major player behind the scenes. A Yale graduate, Stephen certainly has the right mix of brains and charisma to disarm his fellow castaways. This New Yorker believes people will be inclined to trust him but claims "that would be their mistake, because then I strike!"
Described by his friends as wild, smart and ambitious, Stephen's biggest pet peeve is when somebody is overconfident or cocky. He plans to use that type of person to his advantage by forming a bond and then subtly prompting them to carry out his decisions. A strategist, Stephen prides himself on being able to pretend to agree with someone's idea while replacing it with his own.
In his free time, Stephen keeps himself active and fit by boxing and lifting weights. He also takes part in urban combat activities, namely the Idiotarod, which he describes as a great event where "five idiots drag a shopping cart from Brooklyn to Manhattan." Among his reasons for why he believes he will excel at SURVIVOR, Stephen lists "he's strategic and devious."
Stephen is single and currently resides in New York, N.Y.
Name: Sydney Wheeler
Hometown: Raleigh, North Carolina
Sydney Wheeler is the girl next door. Beautiful and smart, Sydney learned early on to adapt to any situation after spending her childhood being shuttled between her conservative parents.
Growing up in Raleigh, North Carolina, Sydney decided to move out to the west coast to try her hand at modeling and interior design. She plans to use the skills she's learned working with different clients to help navigate the social game of SURVIOR. She's also not afraid to use her looks to further herself in the competition.
Forced to mature at an early age, Sydney knows what it really means to live life to its fullest. At age 19 she lost her sister Laura in a tragic car accident, but throughout it all has maintained a positive attitude. "God put us on Earth to do good things, big things and that's what I'm trying to do and achieve in life."
Sydney knows she can use her winning personality, along with her beauty, her body and her brains, to charm people. Wheeler warns, "people stereotype me as just a pretty face. Don't misjudge me, I'm going win." Sydney is ready for the adventure SURVIVOR will surely provide.
Sydney is in a relationship and currently resides in San Diego, Calif.
Name: Tamara "Taj" Johnson-George
Hometown: Nashville, Tennessee
Occupation: Former Pop Star
Tamara "Taj" Johnson-George already has a lot on her plate, but can't wait to add SURVIVOR contestant into the mix. A Grammy®-nominated singer, successful author, wife of a former NFL pro and mother of two wonderful boys, Taj believes she will be the "most underestimated player" in the game.
A Grammy®-nominee for her soul group SWV ("Sisters With Voices"), Taj says "her group was the one to beat." Selling over six million records, her time as a singer has prepared her for the spotlight.
In addition to her music career, Taj is also an accomplished writer. The author of Player HateHER: How To Avoid The Beat Down And Live In A Drama Free World," she tries to practice what she preaches as her true pride and lifes focus lies within her family. The wife of Heisman Trophy winner and former Tennessee Titan running back Eddie George, she warns all opponents, "I'm not the average NFL wife and mother."
Growing up in Brooklyn, Taj overcame both physical and mental abuse in her life. With her background, it's no wonder she says she's "naturally distrustful." Taj goes on to say "I am literally, truly a survivor, who has survived more things you can ever imagine." She is used to beating the odds and plans to do it again.
In her free time, Taj says she is very physical and likes to workout, running, swimming and doing yoga and kickboxing. Taj is the total package built around strength and street smarts and will be a fierce competitor in this game.
Taj currently resides in Nashville, Tenn.
My predictions (guesses, really):
Fail to make the jury:
Make the jury:
Winner (completely wild guess):
It's that time of year again - Survivor time!
Disagree on Deb and JT, they may make the Jury.
I hope we have a sleeper this year that kinda; slides along until after around the final six.
Would love to see #4 and #5 in a 5 person alliance swing from side to side after the merge picking alternating members at each TC.
I’d love to see how far they could go before both sides joined to boot them.
Good to see 2 from Alabama this year. I like Jerry right off, he has a great smile. :) I haven’t watched Survivor in a while, at least the last 3 -4 yrs. I may have to watch this year though.
Hi Jill! Thanks for doing this, looking forward to another season of laughs and social commentary.
Thank you! I really love this!
My picks are as follows:
Dont make the Jury:
Makes the Jury:
If they have a final 3:
If the have a final 2:
My guess as to the winner (and its just a wild guess)
As five out of the sixteen live there that is a pretty safe prediction.
Better looking than SD, IMHO. She doesn’t have the mean look in her eyes, and isn’t sickly skinny.
Thanks for the ping, would you add me to the real Survivor ping list please?
OOps, I see I am already onthe survivor ping list. Thanks!
Carolina is pretty enough. And she surfs, so I’m liking that. But there’s just something about SD....
Is this an April Fool’s joke?
A world class musician who dallies in soccer coaching at a Baptist University???
Self proclaimed “Renaissance Man” (always a bad sign) who is prone to animal attacks.
“To say that he is a Type A, Alpha male, who likes to control the environment around him may just be an understatement.” To say he sucks at it would be spot on. He sounds more like an OUT OF CONTROL loose canon to me.
“Benjamin is single.” Uh, I’m pretty sure he’s married to his ego.
OK, now for the rest.
Brendan Synnott ... self made millionaire, played team sports, doesn’t seem full of himself AND he does not look like a physical threat though I suspect he will be. If he keeps his millionaire status secret he could make it to the final three.
Candace Smith ... first off, no lawyer should have body like that. Just isn’t right. But what’s with the lame tattoo? No, tats aren’t a big deal to me, just that this one looks stupid and is in a stupid place. So, she doesn’t practice law any more and she’s writing a book about herself...at 31. “As an attorney, she mastered the skills of mental combat and knows how to create a strong bargaining position...” Excuse me. (bbbbaaaaaaaaarrrrrrfffffffff...) Sorry. This is a female Barry Soetero and hopefully will not last three days. It will be impossible for her to contain herself. If you have ever dealt with a black, female, “feminist”, whitey can’t tell me what to do, I’m gonna make you pay for slavery attorney types before, you will know what I am talking about.
Debra Beebe ... AKA Bubbles. Debra “juggles her husband.” WTH does that mean? He’s a retard whom she must care for and does nothing for her or their family? “With her abilities as a natural leader combined with her bossy and competitive nature, Debra plans to focus on the weaknesses of others in an effort to get them eliminated.” Uh....no.
Erinn Lobdell... “is very athletic and is constantly training for the next big event. She recently completed training for a marathon and works out everyday to stay in great shape.” Could be one of those who makes it to the final three by taking care of number one and flying under the radar....flying under the radar being key. (That, and/or hooking up with a guy and using him. And I mean that in a good way.)
Jerry Sims... hehehehehehe. There are usually two types of guys that become lifer Army sergeants, the stereotypical autocrat or the (contrary to popular perception) easy going, very competent leader who only barks when there is a real reason to. I’m suspecting Jerry is the latter kind. If he is in as good a shape as he says he is, he should go far.
Sierra Reed... model. Not “no”. HELL NO.
Tyson Apostol...”His favorite movie is “The Jerk” and thats how some people just might describe him.” “he has no tolerance for “know-it-alls” or individuals who lack common courtesy...” In addition, he describes his hobby as “looking awesome”.
Please, please, please, do not be in an alliance with “Renaissance Man”. Having these two prima donnas going against each other could possibly make the show.
Carolina Eastwood.... are we sure this isn’t the “Jalapeno” tribe? I’m just saying. Anyway, this chick is hard to peg just going on her profile info. She seems like a real world survivor, she respects her mom, she’s into sports (surfing is very physical...take my word for it if you’ve never done it), and she’s a dog person. I like all of that. But in her picture she standing in a beauty queen pose. What’s up with that? She’s a wild card. It will really depend on her personality, but I think she has the right intestinal fortitude to go far.
James “JT” Thomas Jr.... a “southern charmer who is responsible for all the paperwork and marketing associated with running the business.” Hmmmm....they didn’t write up JT as much as some of the others. If his “charm” is authentic and he is more of a “Colby” southerner than a redneck southerner (I’m southern...I can say that)he will go pretty far. What I REALLY want to see is, at some point, JT and Candace on the same team. I suspect she will despise everything he is and represents. You know... being a regular person with an accent who (hopefully) could care less about her victimization/entitlement mentality.
Joe Dowdle.... “Joe truly is a genuine Texas Cowboy. He “plans to use a strategy he calls “persuade and evade”...all while staying just below the radar.” OK, I really like Texans...bless their hearts. But ain’t no way this guy will stay under the radar. Not genetically possible. Sorta like JT, it depends on how he comes across. Some people can be braggarts and still come across as likable, others come across as Benjamin Wade.
Sandy Burgin.... the kind of person who usually hangs around under the radar, but not long enough to make it to the final three. Although, if I understand correctly, this season they vote two people off right at the word “go”. Which means appearance and instant first impressions is all they will have to go on. Under those circumstances, Sandy may not last five minutes. Not being mean, just calling it like I see it.
Spencer Duhm... “Spencer is a gay”. That’s not me saying that. That’s Spencer. What is it with gay guys on Survivor? Heteros don’t “announce” their sexual preferences as part of their bios. Do gay guys that go on Survivor get extra action in the steam rooms or something? GeeZZZ!!!! Spencer....you’re not giving us a chance to NOT care. You shouldn’t be voted off...you should be slapped around, tied up, and pushed down the river in a burning canoe.
Stephen Fishbach...”believes he’s a cutthroat player who can manipulate his way to SURVIVOR success, though you couldn’t tell that by looking at his non-threatening appearance.” Ahhh... a back stabber. He should go far. The kind that, if he makes it to the final three, won’t get any votes because...he’s a back stabber.
Sydney Wheeler.... yes. the fact that I’m from North Carolina and work in Raleigh influences my perception of this girl. She is a “model”. Well, nobody’s perfect. But she doesn’t seem like the “head up her ass” or ditzy type model. “God put us on Earth to do good things, big things and that’s what I’m trying to do and achieve in life.” How can you be against that? “Sydney knows she can use her winning personality, along with her beauty, her body and her brains, to charm people.” I think it depends on whether she really does have brains...and no way to tell that here. And finally, “Sydney is in a relationship.” See! When it would really be NICE to know if someone is gay...we get vagueness.
Tamara “Taj” Johnson-George .... If not for the hyphen I could probably pull for Taj. She is certainly one of the more interesting people on the show. “Growing up in Brooklyn, Taj overcame both physical and mental abuse in her life.” Not sure why people in Brooklyn are mentally and physically abused, but the non sequitur issue aside, I think she could kick butt and take names...figuratively and physically. She admits she has trust issues. If she is in an alliance, that should help her. If it prevents her from being in an alliance, it will hurt her.
You hammered the nail on the head. The only thing I care to add is that Benjamin Wade looks like he belongs behind the camera in the porn industry.
LOL! Not that I would know anything about that, but I totally agree.
Jeff’s blog say something big happens in the first 5 minutes - can you ever change a first impression.
Also the blindside is taken to a whole new level.
I like this current group with the exception of the first guy, Ben Wade. My gut feeling says he’s a homo.......its in his eyes.
Timbira Tribe (Blue Buffs): Ben, Brendan, Candace, Debra, Erinn, Jerry, Sierra, Tyson
Jalapao Tribe (Red Buffs): Carolina, James "JT", Joe, Sandy, Spencer, Stephen, Sydney, Tamara "Taj"
Episode 1 title: "Lets Get Rid of the Weak Players Before We Even Start"
Sixteen new contestants begin the adventure of a lifetime in the highlands of Brazil. Host Jeff Probst promises us a great season with lots of likable characters and many twists. In fact, the first twist occurs in the first five minutes of the game.
Reward/Immunity Challenge: Titled "A River, Run Through It." All the players except one for each tribe will race over some sandy hills and into the river to retrieve a raft carrying wooden planks. The remaining player for each tribe has to figure out which plank goes where as part of building a staircase to a tower. Once they build it and get to the top two other players will do a table maze. The first tribe to get through the maze and raise their flag wins reward and immunity.
Spoilers (highlight to see):
The first twist is that right at the start of the game, before the contestants even make the hike to camp, they are told to vote on the weakest player from each tribe, based entirely on first impressions, supposedly to eliminate them. Instead, the players voted weakest (Sandy from Jalapao and Sierra from Timbira), rather than having to make the 4-hour hike to camp in 110-degree heat, are given a helicopter ride to camp. The rest of the players are going to get an hilarious surprise when they get there!
Reward/Immunity Challenge winner: Jalapao
Voted Off: Sierra
Back after the show with the recap.
I can hardly wait! Got my snacks and glass of wine ready, going to put my feet up and relax.
“... a great season with lots of likable characters and many twists ...”
Works for me! I sure am tired of all those cops and gruesome dead body shows where the guilty party is (almost always) the rich middle-aged White guy.
I figured what early surprise was based on watching the preview special. Looking forward to the episode tonight.
Spiler alert for left coasters!
Sandy is a complete moron.
Tyson is a fairy nice guy. Likes tierras.
Uh....Carolina.....best bra on Survivor. Ever!
Dumber than a box of rocks, she needs to go. she had her chance..........
stupidest choice for a first person vote off EVER!
Paces? I don know no stickin’ paces.
Worse than Michelle (from Gabon)?
It’s called “Ripped from the Headlines.” They take a real-life murder and base an episode around it, only where in real life the murder was committed by a poor black or Mexican, in the show they make the murderer rich, middle-aged, and white.
Couldn’t agree more. I’m already pulling for JT, Deb and Jerry. Wonder how they found somebody from Samson. They could use the Pea River swamp for a survivor show.
Dang. I forgot about her. Still sucks.
Both this season and Gabon, they’ve had a chance to vote out a weak, foolish, and/or annoying old lady. And both times they voted out a young, athletic woman instead.
Fang paid for it by repeatedly getting creamed in challenges. Will Jalapao pay for it as well?
I hope so. Their punishment is that they have to listen to her talk. It’s like listening to fingernails on a chalk board.
These unanimous first votes may not be the best way to do things. People second or third from the bottom of the totem pole just go along with the group, with an “as long as it’s not me” attitude - and then whine at the next tribal council when THEY become the one at the bottom and get voted out. Players should start thinking strategically from the beginning. They need to start thinking ahead. “X is going this time. I’m glad it’s not me, but where do I stand with the remainder of this group? Am I a likely target next time?” And if they are going to be at the bottom next time, they should work on a way to change the order.
What was Sandy doing for three and a half hours while she was alone at camp? She didn’t do any work around camp and she didn’t make any real progress towards finding the idol.
At least Sierra made good use of her time. Whether she made the right kind of use with her time remains to be seen, but already I like her attitude a lot better than Sandy’s.
The 53 year old lady bus driver is DUMB. I wonder if she knows what a pace is now and what a palm tree looks like. It was comical watching her try to find the hidden immunity. Since it was only good for that teams first tribal council I hope she doesn't keep looking for it, but I wouldn't rule it out in her case.
Sandy will be voted off as soon as her tribe loses immunity. Even if there’s a tribe switch, her new tribe will vote her off.
She was so happy that she wasn’t voted off this time. Considering her comical attempts to find the idol, I wonder if she has the intelligence to realize that barring some extraordinary screw-up by someone else, she will be gone the next time she goes to tribal council.
Sandy couldn’t pour piss out of a boot is there was a hole in the heel. She’s the Southern version Boston Rob...annoying and stupid.
I was totally impressed with Sierra. I think the decision to look for the HII was a 50/50 proposition in terms of it being a right or wrong decision. Regardless...she made the hard decision and moved forward. And remember, now that she made it past the first council, she can still go out and look for the HII.
But the reason I changed my opinion about her is because of the way she took over on the challenge. Really, the only reason they won is because of her.
The big question is...did they keep blurring out her butt because she was wearing a thong, or nothing at all?
OH...and Ben is as big an ass as he appeared to be in his profile. In honor of his self-perception as a “Renaissance Man,” I now dub him “Renée”...as in Renée Zellweger. (No offense to RZ intended.)
I missed the part that the HII was only good for the first council. Dang.
It’s only good for each tribe’s first council. Sierra’s tribe hasn’t been yet, so she can still look for it and use it if she finds it.
Ah...good to know.
Timbira Tribe (Black Buffs): Ben, Brendan, Candace, Debra, Erinn, Jerry, Sierra, Tyson
Jalapao Tribe (Red Buffs): JT, Joe, Sandy, Spencer, Stephen, Sydney, Taj
CAROLINA VOTED OUT FIRST
Sixteen Americans from different walks of life sit on the back of a flatbed truck, unaware of the adventure that lies ahead, as it roars through an arid and unfamiliar land. They are in one of the most desolate and unforgiving places in Brazil: Tocantins. The new castaways have already been divided into two tribes: Jalapao, in red, and Timbira, in black. The Timbira Tribe consists of Coach, Candace, Tyson, Brendan, Debbie, Sierra, Jerry and Erinn. The Jalapao Tribe consists of Sandy, Carolina, JT, Joe, Taj, Sydney, Stephen and Spencer.
As the truck comes to a halt in the middle of nowhere, host Jeff Probst greets the new castaways and presents them with an opportunity to gather supplies that have been loaded on the truck to aid in their survival. Jeff Probst explains to the tribes that they will have sixty seconds to unload as many supplies as they can. Without hesitation, Probst tells them their time starts now. Both tribes frantically begin throwing watermelons, water jugs, bananas, beans, and wooden crates off the truck. Jeff stops them after sixty seconds and then asks the castaways what their first impressions are. Benjamin "Coach" Wade, the 37 year-old soccer coach from Bolivar, Missouri, smugly states, "It seemed like we all knew what we were gonna get. We got all the water, we got all the beans. We've got everything we need." Spencer Duhm, the 19-year old student from Lakeland, Florida, speaks for the Jalapao Tribe when Jeff Probst puts his tribe on the spot about not collecting any water or beans. "We'll be alright," he confidently states.
Jeff Probst tosses a map and a compass to each tribe to aid in their four hour trek to camp. Before the shock of this settles in, the castaways are thrown a surprising twist: they will now have their first vote, and one person from each tribe will not be making this journey. Based solely on first impressions, the tribes cast their votes. Jalapao almost unanimously votes for Sandy, which sets her off. "I am pissed. I am so pissed," she fumes. Meanwhile, Timbira unanimously votes for Sierra Reed, the 23 year-old model from Los Angles, California. Sierra sniffles and chokes up after the votes have been read and reveals that she has strep throat, which explains why she appears to be so miserable. Jeff Probst catches the new castaways off guard again when he reveals that the two people who they thought were "voted off" were only being excused from the four hour trek to camp. They will instead be flown by helicopter to their respective camps while the rest of their tribemates make their way on foot. "Thank you God!" Sandy exclaims. Jeff reminds Sandy that this is a game of social integration and since she was already singled out as the weakest of her tribe, she and Sierra must now use this head start to camp to figure out a way to change their standings with their respective tribemates. Jeff sends Sandy and Sierra off in a helicopter as the rest of their tribes begin the difficult four hour trek to their camps.
TREK TO CAMP
As the Jalapao Tribe sets off on their hike, they begin to quickly regret their decision to bring heavy watermelons instead of beans and water. Spencer Duhm, the youngest Survivor castaway ever at 19 years old, reflects on the difficulties he faced: "The trek was treacherous. It was hot. The sun was high. It was not easy by any means." Jalapao soon questions the direction they are headed, and Taj asks, "Are we going the right way, Joe?" Joe and the rest of the tribe stop to check their compass as Carolina annoyingly states the obvious: "Remember the compass always faces north." In the end, it is JT who wins the confidence of his tribe as he leads them on the pathway to their camp. JT, the 24 year-old cattle rancher from Samson, Alabama, feels confident that he will go far in the game. "I know I'm gonna be good at catching fish, and I know I'm gonna be good at providing, but that also will put me out in the front of everybody else as a threat eventually," he proclaims.
In another remote area of Tocantins, the Timbira Tribe struggles to make their way to camp. Erinn Lobdell, the 26 year-old hairstylist from Waukesha, Wisconsin, complains, "What the hell am I doing out here? I'm a hairstylist. The last time I went camping I was maybe in the seventh grade." The Timbira Tribe drops their supplies to take a breather. Brendan Synnott, the 30 year-old entrepreneur from New York, New York, questions whether Jerry Sims, the 49 year-old U.S. Army sergeant from Rock Hill, South Carolina, is in the proper shape to play the game. "Dude, what else do you do to stay in shape?" asks Brendan. "Eat potato chips and watch TV!" laughs Jerry. Benjamin Wade, or "Coach" as everyone calls him, shares his high opinion of himself. "I consider myself a Renaissance Man adventurer. I'm a university head soccer coach and the polar opposite of that is that I am the conductor and artistic director of a symphony in Northern California. I'm always used to being a leader by inspiring and pulling out the best in everybody because, as we all know, a team is as good as its weakest player." Coach continues to preach about his own honor and nobility to his tribemates as they continue their journey to camp.
Sierra and Sandy sit quietly in the helicopter as it drops Sandy off at the Jalapao camp. She breaks down immediately upon arrival, expressing shock that her tribemates, whom she barely knows, have already singled her out as the outcast. Sandy huffs and puffs, "It scared me so bad, but now I'm gonna make it to thirty-nine days. I'm gonna show 'em because maybe I'm the older woman, but I'm older and I'm wiser and this game is mine. That's what I believe with all my heart. So let the games begin."
HUNT FOR THE IDOL
At the Jalapao camp, Sandy finds a note which gives her the option to set up camp, thus improving her position with her tribemates, or to search for clues to a hidden immunity idol. Sandy excitedly stands up and shouts, "I'm gonna go find my idol!" Sandy rejects the option of building a shelter with the supplies that were lying at her camp simply because, "It still ain't gonna keep my name off that piece of paper, so I'm gonna look for the idol and that's the bottom line because you have to look out for number one and that's me."
Sierra is dropped off at the Timbira camp, and also finds a note giving her the choice to build her camp with materials provided to her, or search for clues to a hidden immunity idol. For Sierra, the smart choice is to win her tribemates over by building a shelter. "Yeah I could go and try to look for an immunity idol and try to protect my butt, but my prerogative is looking good in the eyes of my crew," Sierra explains.
ARRIVAL AT CAMP
With dusk approaching, the Jalapao Tribe makes it to camp and is greeted by Sandy. Taj immediately asks Sandy why their shelter has not been built. Carolina shares the same frustrations as the rest of her tribe: "We have just trekked four hours carrying pots and watermelons and then we get here and it's like Sandy didn't do anything." Sandy has a viewpoint of her own on her passive decision: "The bottom line is this: when we go to Tribal Council, you're gonna write down my name again. Now why the hell do I even want to waste my energy on tryin' to get in your good graces when [it] wasn't even an option."
At nightfall, the Timbira Tribe finally makes it to their camp where Sierra has been working tirelessly building a shelter. Jerry and the others notice the amount of work she put in to building the camp and praise her for her hard work. Sierra then explains that she is sorry that she tried to hide the fact that she was sick with strep throat, and her tribe reassures her that she would not have made it on the trek due to her illness. Although it would appear that she has won her tribe over by building a shelter, Coach has a different opinion. "Obviously I'm pushing for the strong to survive, so I think that Sierra, even though she's awesome, she's got to go."
WHAT'S A PACE?
The next morning, the Jalapao Tribe has erected a shelter and is putting the finishing touches on it. As JT patiently leads his tribe through this, Carolina feels that she should put in her two cents, which irks her tribemates. "Let's just try to get everything done as soon as possible and relax," she whines. In the meantime, having read her first clue, Sandy sneaks away from camp to dig at the river bank in search of the next clue that will lead her to the hidden immunity idol. Sandy proceeds to dig up half the beach and finds the clue, which tells her to walk ten paces toward a lone palm tree and dig in the sand. "What's a pace?" Sandy asks herself.
REWARD/IMMUNITY CHALLENGE: A RIVER, RUN THROUGH IT
Jalapao and Timbira arrive on their respective colored mats as host Jeff Probst explains the rules of the first immunity challenge. Six members of each tribe will race across a series of sand mounds and into the river where they must retrieve a raft loaded with puzzle planks. Once they have the raft back to shore, they will release the puzzle planks by untying the ropes that secure them to the raft. They will then race those puzzle planks back to the start where the two remaining tribe members will use those puzzle planks to build a staircase. Each puzzle plank is different and will only fit into the staircase one way. Once all tribe members make it to the top of the staircase, any two tribe members must work together to navigate a peg through a table maze allowing them to release their tribe flag. The first tribe to raise their flag wins fire, in the form of flint, and immunity.
Building the staircase for Jalapao are Taj and Sandy and, for Timbira, Sierra and Erinn. Everybody else is running to retrieve puzzle planks from the river. The castaways are off to a fast start, with JT ahead of the pack. Jalapao has a mild head start as both tribes carry their rafts with puzzle planks through the water and to the shore. The tribes untie their puzzle planks and struggle to carry the heavy pieces across steep sand mounds. Jeff reminds the tribes that the current temperature is one hundred and twenty degrees. Sandy and Sierra, the two outcasts, take control of the challenge as they lead their respective tribes through their efforts to complete the staircase puzzle. Sandy and Taj prove to be an effective team as they give Jalapao a huge lead over Timbira, completing their staircase with a comfortable lead over the opposing tribe. The lead quickly fades as Sydney and Spencer set to work slowly on the table maze for Jalapao. In no time, Timbira's staircase is complete and Erinn and Brendan move quickly through the table maze as Sydney and Spencer continue to struggle. With the utmost confidence, Erinn and Brendan race through the maze and are ultimately successful. Timbira wins immunity and fire, in the form of flint, sending Jalapao to their first Tribal Council.
THE FIRST TO GO
The Jalapao Tribe returns to camp and, with Tribal Council looming, the obvious person on the chopping block is Sandy. Taj, Stephen and Carolina take a dip in the river and Carolina once again decides to voice her opinion about the shelter. "Our little projects, we never finish them," she pouts. She continues to bicker about her tribe's lack of progress, which irritates Taj. "When we first came back [from the challenge] the first thing you're gonna tell somebody is to clean up? Clean up the outdoors?" Taj snaps. Carolina admits that she is very opinionated and regularly speaks her mind, but Taj advises Carolina to calm down because she tends to panic. As the tribe members discuss who to vote out, they are torn between Carolina and Sandy. JT expresses that he is tired of Carolina's "do-nothing" attitude considering that she constantly bosses everyone around. Meanwhile, Sandy is determined to stay in the game. "I'm glad I'm here today and I'm hoping that I'm gonna be here tomorrow," says Sandy. "I'm definitely gonna figure out what ten paces are and I'm gonna dig this time under anything and everything I guess."
At Tribal Council, Sandy is singled out as the tribe outcast based on the first vote, and it is the general consensus that she did nothing to redeem herself at camp. Sandy defends herself by stating that, although she acknowledges this, she was simply trying to regroup on her own. Sandy demonstrates her various eccentricities while attempting to plead her case. "The old lady can also fit into this tribe of all these kids that could be mine," she exclaims. Jeff Probst bluntly asks her, "Sandy you a little crazy?" "Oh I'm a lot crazy," she humbly replies to the amusement of her tribe. The spotlight then turns to Carolina, who openly admits to voicing her opinion when it may or may not be needed. With this, the tribe members cast their votes. In the end, Carolina is blindsided. With seven out of the eight votes cast against her, Carolina Eastwood, the 26 year-old bartender from West Hollywood, California becomes the first person voted out of SURVIVOR: TOCANTINS: THE BRAZILIAN HIGHLANDS.
I'll be back on Thursday with next week's preview and picks.
Free Hatch or imprison Geithner!