Survivor: Redemption Island
Keep Hope Alive
By Jim Van Nest, Survivor Analyst
March 3, 2011
Hello, good people, and welcome back to Survivor: Redemption Island. I'm very excited to see this week's episode - mainly because we get to see our first Redemption Island duel. But before I get to that...
Previously on Survivor: Russell found an idol clue, but Ralph found the idol. Philip went spear hunting for crabs and the producers made EVERYone's day by giving the castaways their swimming suits. I can only assume even they had seen enough of Phil's drawers. Andrea and Matt began a show-mance, and just as quickly, Rob slit the young lovers' throats by organizing his power foursome (including Grant, Ashley and his #1 girl, Natalie) to send goody two shoes Matt to Redemption Island.
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. At least, that's what the previews have lead us to believe as Andrea appears to be on the warpath for Matt's ouster. Of course, how much can an alliance of 1 do? We also heard Stephanie speak of the "biggest blindside ever". But the most intriguing thing about tonight's episode is that we'll finally get to see Redemption Island put into practice. "Francesqua" and Matt will be set to duel tonight, with the loser packing their few belongings and leaving Survivor: Redemption Island for good. The winner gets three more days and the opportunity to duel one more time for survival.
I'll make the quick note that the episode title this week is, "Keep Hope Alive." This has been Russell's mantra since the Samoa season. So much so that he had it tattooed onto his right arm. Does this mean he keeps hope alive? Or is it just the opposite and we'll finally get what millions of Survivor fans have been waiting for, to see Russell Hantz's torch extinguished? My gut tells me it's closer to the latter. That being said, let's take a look at Week 3's Power Rankings.
Rob - 4-1. I still don't think he'll make the end, but up to now, he's playing a near perfect game. Busting up the Andrea-Matt twosome was brilliant and necessary. Personally, I think he let Matt's handshake throw him off his game a bit. Andrea was the obvious boot there and I think Rob weakened his tribe by dumping Matt so quickly. Either way, though, Rob is in control of his alliance, his tribe and the game, at this point.
Natalie/Ashley/Grant - 8-1 Natalie is emerging as Rob's #2. But for now, I'm going to keep his alliance together in the second slot as you never know what could happen. What IS happening though, is this group is becoming tighter and tighter. And if Ometepe keeps losing, they'll form one of those us against the world bonds that could see them all to the end.
Ralph - 10-1 We still haven't seen a whole lot of the Zapatera tribe, but with an idol in hand and the whole world out to get Russell, Ralph is poised to run the show on this tribe. His easy-going, hard-working, "I'm a dumbass" attitude will serve him well as no one will really suspect him to be a threat, until he becomes a threat and it's too late.