Survivor: Not Going Down Without a Fight/Reunion
May 19, 2016 8:13 AM - Season 32, Episode 14 - Subscribe

The sole survivor is crowned, Mark the Chicken lives to see another day, and the castaways reunite in the final episode of Survivor: Kaoh Rong.
posted by phunniemee (11 comments total)
Spoilery spoiler spoiler alert spoilers hey stop reading if you don't want to know things ok.

God damnit!
Aubry was robbed. She played a great game, easily got the best arc from the story editors, and consistently brought it despite having all sorts of road blocks thrown up against her. I hope hope hope they bring her back for a future season. I think surely they will, BUT

The next season looks like it's going to be INCREDIBLY stupid, holy crap. Gen-X vs Millennials, ffs. Survivor is no stranger to stereotyping people, but good god what a dumbass premise. Generational sniping, which you get anyway, but on purpose. (I'm going to watch every episode, obviously, but this kind of shit worries me in terms of shark jumping and future show longevity. 33 seasons in: so it's come to this.) It IS kind of hilarious though that the show has been on so long that the generation who played as the young whipper snappers in Borneo is now returning as the olds. That's almost poetic.
posted by phunniemee at 8:18 AM on May 19, 2016 [2 favorites]

On the one hand, I think the jury really needed to hear some Spencer-style speech reminding them that they should vote for the player who played the best game, not just vote against the people that they personally don't like.

On the other hand, Cydney voted for Michele, so maybe Michele did more to earn the victory than what the TV edit let on. Did the reunion episode give Cydney a chance to explain her vote?

I wish the reunion episode had called out Scot and Jason for being such a**holes to Alecia. Seriously, those guys are a**holes and need to be told that to their face. It's clear they didn't vote for Aubry because she outsmarted them. As far as I can tell, they basically had no opinion about Michele because they only talked to her once, for like five seconds, or something.

Also, when Tai refused to give Scot the idol, the vote was Scot 4, Aubry 2, and Tai 2. If Scot is safe, doesn't that mean that there's a re-vote between ONLY Aubry and Tai? In that case, Tai couldn't possibly come to Scot's aid here because he might be the one going home. But Tai never once mentioned this rationale for his vote, did he? Did he not even know this?

Finally, why did Neal have so much hate for Michele? Again, as far as I can tell, Michele wasn't even on the show until after the merge and Neal went home. It now seems like Michele had a more interesting story that the TV edit never showed us, which is deeply unsatisfying given that she won after we were showed a winner's edit for Aubry.
posted by obscure simpsons reference at 11:07 AM on May 19, 2016 [2 favorites]

Did the reunion episode give Cydney a chance to explain her vote?

No, the reunion show sucked in terms of getting to actually talk to people because fucking Sia showed up and gave $100K to Tai for being nice to a chicken.
posted by phunniemee at 11:15 AM on May 19, 2016 [4 favorites]

Not that there's anything wrong with that, I just really like Cydney and would have liked to hear from her. And I'd like to have seen Jason and Scot get shit on a little bit for being megadouchebros.
posted by phunniemee at 11:16 AM on May 19, 2016 [1 favorite]

I think part of why Aubry lost at the end was because she came across as insincere at the final. Telling Debbie she got voted off because she was a big threat was bull shit. She should have told the truth, like Tai and Michelle did, instead she continued with her well spoken BS.
That said, I think she was one of the best players in history, with one of the weirdest juries ever.

WTF Neal! He was such an asshole to Michelle. For a as good a game as Aubry played, in the end Michelle outplayed her. She won when winning meant the most. Good for her.
posted by cairnoflore at 1:35 PM on May 19, 2016

Michelle won because she didn't piss people off and finished strong. Tai and Audbry either sort of fall apart at the end and/or pissed off too many people. You can argue that Aubry played a better game and wouldn't disagree, but it's all social and Michelle did better on that front.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:52 PM on May 19, 2016 [1 favorite]

GenX vs Millenials I hope it's not like the preview, with GenXers (of what I am one) constantly mouthing off about 'those kids' because that's already old.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:58 PM on May 19, 2016

I agree Aubry was totally robbed. I was flabbergasted! She was an incredible player.

And I knew something was up with there being an even number of jury members, but I didn't guess the reward winner would be able to vote out a jury member. Not sure how I feel about that new twist. But Michele obviously chose wisely, and I, too, didn't really understand where Neal's vitriol for her came from? The hell?

I was seriously on pins and needles during the fire making, and I thought Aubry was done for when her fire died out. AND THEN IT CAME BACK AND I WAS LIKE YESSSSSSS!

I as well would have really liked to hear from Cydney. If Tai had been able to construct a single comprehensible sentence without falling all over his words we could have had a couple minutes more in the show. I do like Tai though, he had a big heart, and I will say Mark the chicken making it to the end was pretty awesome.

The hour for the reunion show feels entirely too short and hurried for me.
posted by bologna on wry at 5:06 PM on May 19, 2016

Aubry (and Tai) weren't able to counter Michelle's narrative that she "finished strong" and "didn't vote anyone onto the jury (except for her bud Julia in an "it was you or me" scenario)", which cost them. They needed to say "Michelle didn't have to make any hard decisions about putting any of you on the jury - if you think *not* being an important part of tribal council is a worthy basis for winning Survivor, then vote for her."

I felt for Neal's frustration - medical-ed out in what seemed to be debatable circumstances after the producers were caught out by their poor risk management leading to widespread heat exhaustion, while he was in a strong position in the merged tribe, and then excluded from the consolation prize of being part of the jury (which he was clearly enjoying) ... well maybe by showing a 'darker side' he might be remembered as a bit of a villain and get an invite back.

But, it was good season (particularly following the immense highs of the previous one). Almost all of the contestants were fun to watch. My gauge for a good group is whether or not I am disappointed to lose someone when they are voted out - there were only a few "thank goodness that person's not wasting my time any more" finishes for me.
posted by jjderooy at 6:29 PM on May 19, 2016

This season was not my favorite. Michelle winning was an especially crappy ending. No matter how stupid GenX vs Millennials is, you just never know, any season can turn awesome with one or a few game changing players or strategies. Survivor will endure FOREVER. Even when I don't love a season I still love this show.
posted by palegirl at 8:42 AM on May 21, 2016 [1 favorite]

I thought that Neal was smart enough to try to make the most of his ten seconds as he was leaving. He knew he wouldn't have a chance to further influence the jury in Aubry's favour, he knew that he wouldn't vote at all -- I read his venomous comment to Michelle as one last attempt to sway people for Aubry. His comment (while a bit too far, IMHO) was basically saying "hey, you don't deserve to be here, you got here because you were carried". I can also imagine that, in a season where he got medically evacuated, to have his jury vote taken away would have left him feeling pretty cranky, so there's that frustration, too.

I think Aubry was a great player. Awesome edit from overly anxious in the first day to confident final three member at the end. I loved her building fire. I would have preferred all three women were in the final three, or for Aubry to have won final immunity, or for there to be a final two (yeah, I was suckered into thinking that, too). I definitely would have preferred Aubry winning.

I also would have liked for them to actually talk to Cydney, who was a pretty solid player. They didn't talk to her at all on the reunion show! AT ALL. Very disappointing.

Overall, I liked the season -- wish there hadn't been so many evacuations, but at least they're filming in other places to help reduce things like heatstroke. We'll see how next season turns out. While the themes are pretty lame, it doesn't preclude it from being a good season. Also, did anyone care about Brawn/Brains/Beauty after like, episode 3? I know I didn't. Anyway, I'm looking forward to compelling stories and fun challenges in S33, regardless of the silly theme.
posted by juliebug at 10:55 AM on May 21, 2016

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