Survivor: Tocantins Finale Recap
By Kim Hollis and David Mumpower
May 18, 2009
Of course, there's also the pesky matter of Erinn telling J.T. that Stephen would have taken her to the final. When he directly asks Stephen if this is true, Stephen perhaps doesn't do the best job of quickly denying this that he might have. He offers to help J.T. think things through, which is pretty noble of him, and it will likewise be noble for J.T. to take his ally from the first day to the final.
Despite Stephen's best attempts to argue himself right out of the final (he claims that perhaps the promise of a breakfast together would be more important than $1 million), J.T. does in fact hold true to their alliance. The boys are going to the final together. We hope we get some good bow-chica-wow-wow music as they go about their final day.
What happens the next day? Stephen celebrates the fact that J.T. has finally made a commitment. He appreciates that his friend's mind works similarly to his. Oh, he also said that he thought he was a charmer when he first met him. Awwwww.
At long last, it's time for Tribal Council. For their opening statements, we see two different approaches. Stephen talks about how if it had been a contest between who was the best woodsman or who had the most charming Southern accent, they could have just voted for J.T. on day one and been done with it. He notes that he thinks the reason he should win is because he has changed the most during their time on Survivor. When he arrived, he was uncomfortable in his own skin, had never been camping, and never thought he could get through an ordeal like this one. His life has been profoundly affected by his time on the island.
As for J.T., he effectively says that he might not have a fancy English degree, but he is the first person in his family to graduate from college, and he's smart enough to have been the driving factor in the majority of decisions that have taken place with regard to various votes. At the same time, he's humble enough to note that had things just gone slightly differently, he'd be on the jury while one of the other players would be in his seat. He turns up the accent a little bit and it's probably not the worst idea in the world, either.
Brendan is the first jury member to speak to the boys, and he gets his money's worth. It's been very clear the whole time that he's been enjoying watching the game play out, and he says as much. He asks Stephen if he really thinks that his argument that he has changed is a legitimate reason for him to win, especially considering that it's not a factor in other games and sporting events like football or the like. Stephen counters that he thinks in Survivor, it should matter, because "outwit" is a crucial component of the game. J.T. disagrees, saying that he thinks just because someone had a harder time overcoming some obstacles, it doesn't make that person better. In fact, he claims that Stephen hid in the shadows during a lot of challenges, which perhaps means he's less deserving of respect. Stephen rebuts by saying that hiding in the shadows is a good Survivor strategy. Any notion of a gentleman's agreement not to hit each other is out the window, obviously. Brendan is delighted with the whole thing.