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Survivor: Blood vs. Water - Preview, Part 1

By Ben Willoughby

September 16, 2013

Well, they don't appear to be off to a roaring start.

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Then, humble and modest Hayden completely takes over the interview. Kat’s biggest weakness is that she “doesn’t shut up, she talks and talks and talks and talks.” “You learn more when you listen”, he bangs on. “I don’t want her to be a mute, I want her to go out there and have a great time and talk and have fun, but just kind of be careful, you know?” Hayden could use some of that great social game advice he’s dishing out.

Assessment: Kat is still oblivious Kat. I expect I'll be trying out "Oh Kat" as a regular catch-phrase. Hayden is yet to demonstrate his mastery of the social game.

Monica and Brad

Here is Monica from the One World season and her husband Brad, a former NFLer who looks a bit like Ed O’Neill. They probably couldn’t get Taj from Tocantins and Eddie George. Oh well.

Monica and Brad have been married for 21 years, have three kids, and are ready to win. Monica says that Brad is her “shield”, but Brad says that he has “NFL stigma all over me.” I agree. I mean, he spent years as part of an evil organization that ignores the damage the game does to the players who make them rich. And even worse, he played for Tampa. But he means it in a “doesn’t need the money, is a huge physical threat” way, and it will be his job to convince people that there’s another threat bigger than him. Monica agrees, saying you can’t have “blinders” and be thinking “why would somebody want to get me off?”

Monica talks about how she never had an alliance on her season – she was immediately on the outs with the rest of the female tribe, and when she was switched over to the male tribe she was an outsider, and the only reason she was kept around was because she did a lot of work at camp. But now Brad is there to be the “workhorse” and the thinking will be left to her. If I were Monica, I’d stick to the work-horsing where my strength obviously lies.

EW asks Brad how he is going to cope with the heat, but Brad says he is used to it because he played for Tampa (eww!), and he was a lot heavier back then. Monica says “He’s a walking infirmary now, and he needs me to help guide him. Who’s going to win, you or me?” Monica is better at interviewing than EW. But Brad wants to talk about how all the fat will melt away under the hot Filipino sun and he hopes the weather will be terrible and make everyone else miserable.




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EW asks Monica what Brad’s biggest weakness? She says the culture of Survivor has changed – from keeping the strong until the merge to getting rid of the strong. “The threats are the Cochrans,” says Brad, who he thinks only won because the Three Amigos were getting all the attention, leaving him to get to the end with "crybaby" (Dawn) and someone else whose name he can’t remember (but it took me a good three minutes to remember it was Sherri). Brad will be explaining to people that the ones who are not threats are the real threats. I’m sure the experienced Survivor players will humor him when he does that.

Monica would love to see the muscle get together and go to the end, as didn’t work last season. But Brad also wants to go with someone who has the Survivor knowledge, like Tina, Aras or Rupert. “Rupert is very well-liked, very loyal,” chimes in Monica. “You ever notice about Rupert, when he smiles, he kind of looks like a ventriloquist dummy!” Brad plans to do something like put his hand behind Rupert’s back and get him to mouth some words while Brad talks. That's horribly disrespectful, but also kind of awesome. I will have to reassess my opinion of Brad.

Assessment: I think Monica will make the same mistakes she did in the One World season. And Brad is too busy thinking about last season where Cochran was a threat to realize that there aren’t a lot of Cochran-types around this season. Think wider, Brad.

There are the first four castaway pairs, and if there’s one common thread, it’s that the male castaways sure spend a lot of time talking over the top of the female ones, and it's a lot more obnoxious when you see it than when you're doing it yourself. And that's one to grow on.

We’ll see what more we can learn from the other six castaway pairs tomorrow.


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