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Survivor: Kaoh Rong - Season Preview

Part 1 - The Brains Tribe

By Jim Van Nest

February 16, 2016

For the last time, I'm not taking my shirt off, so stop asking!

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Hello, good people! Can you believe it's that time already? We are only a couple days away from the premiere of the 32nd season of CBS's reality trailblazer, Survivor. For this season, Survivor is going back to the well that brought us Cagayan, one of the most fun seasons in a while - Brains vs. Beauty vs. Brawn! Last time out, Brawn member Tony Vlachos stormed the beach, grabbed hold of the game on day one and never let go. With idols, spy shacks, a bag of tricks and Tyler Perry's help - Tony dominated the game and eventually took home the million dollar prize. Cagayan was so popular that four of its players were voted back onto Survivor for last season's Second Chance. So, it stands to reason that CBS wouldn't wait too long to go back to this format.

Over the next couple days, I'm going to do three preview columns for this season - one for each tribe. I'm going to make predictions as I always do. This is probably the time for me to point out that I've nailed the last two winners in Mike Holloway and Jeremy Collins - so you can start calling me Jim-stradomus! Without further ado - let's say we get to the frickin' preview!

We're going to start the preview with the Brains tribe, called Chan Loh. They will be wearing the blue buffs to start the season. As always, we'll preview players in alphabetical order.

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Aubry Bracco - Right off the bat, I have to talk about someone I think has no chance of winning the game. She describes herself as weird, and I agree. One of her hobbies is crayon art and she wishes she could bring a big box of 64 crayons to Survivor with her to help everyone by introducing them to art therapy. On Survivor island. Also, she wants to bring a book on astrology - that will always make friends, especially on a tribe with a bunch of "brains." Aubry could last a little while if she can tone down the quirk and just get to work. But right off the bat, if she's talking crayons and "what's your sign" - she's a possible first boot. I wouldn't rule out the possibility of a med-evac here as well. This is the most brutal physical season ever and I could easily see Aubry as a casualty of those conditions. Sad to say, but I don't think Aubry will be datable and she'll be a pre-merge boot, possibly first out.




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Debbie Wanner - I really have no idea what to think of Debbie. On one hand, she's a scientist with a very logical mind, she's in fantastic shape and she's worked helping to diffuse bombs, so she can handle stress. On the other hand, she compares herself to Coach and wears a bathing suit with the close up face of a tiger on it. She's one part badass and another part Wanda Shirk (look her up, you'll remember her). Even her bio is tough to gauge. As all of the brains are wont to do, she uses "Word of the Day" words where she could use something else, but she has a ton of survival training and seems like she'll be a natural out there. I think a large part of her game will be if people find her interesting. If her stories interest people, she'll become part of the group and will do okay. If she has too much of a Coach factor - she'll be ostracized and an early boot. She's the typical age (49) to be the Tribe Mom - but that doesn't seem her style so she'll have to work to fit in. I think she'll do it and make the merge.

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Elizabeth (Liz) Markham - Okay, I think I could really like Liz. First off, she is wicked smart. Jeff has said that she's the only player ever to get a perfect score on her IQ test. Further, her background and work all involve numbers and odds and statistics. She spent time in Vegas counting cards and destroying the blackjack table. She definitely has the strategic mind for this game. The worry with her will be whether or not she can turn that off for long enough to have a social game. Shirin was also crazy smart and a numbers genius. But she couldn't play well with others and it doomed her game. Liz is attractive and that might buy her a little time at the beginning of this game, but she needs to have a personality if she wants to stick around long term. My bet is, she will definitely make the merge and could have a deep run in this game.


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