Kyle Jason on “Survivor: Kaoh Rong” is a heck of an interesting guy. He’s served overseas, worked as a private contractor for Blackwater, and is now a bounty hunter. In between his job history and all of the tattoos that he has, he may be one of the most intimidating people we’ve ever seen on the show. We love that he was cast.
What we’re very curious about is if a guy like Kyle, someone who seems ready to embrace the villain role if it comes to him and is taking a Brian Heidik – “business trip” approach to taking on this game, can actually win in 2016. This is what we’re going to try and figure out in our latest spotlight article below.
Age – 31
Location – Detroit, Michigan. It’s a city where the people work hard and are tough; seems pretty appropriate for Kyle.
Tribe -To Tang a.k.a. the Brawn tribe.
Occupation – Bounty hunter / private investigator. In terms of occupation, we haven’t seen many people on this show quite like him.
Past “Survivor” comparison – He picks Russell Hantz in his bio, and says so because “he is the only person that has ever truly played the game the way you should. The only difference is that I wouldn’t wait so long making things disappear.” Anyone who classifies themselves as such has to be thought of as a possible villain pre-season, and we’re not going to argue with the comparison for now.
Things to know – Kyle owns that he has a really interesting life, and really can’t shy away from discussing his military background because of all of his tattoos. He has a young daughter with autism and wants to make some more money to better care for her; therefore, there is a softer side to this guy than what you first see after looking at him and all of his tattoos. He is very good at what he does, though, so you can’t let your guard down for a second.
Advantages – He’s not going to be a guy who ever quits. He’s already survived very difficult conditions in the Middle East, and is taking a very impersonal approach to the game. He’s not going to be guided by emotion, and is going to be very good at manipulating and rallying other people to his side. He doesn’t have the same used-car salesman charm that Brian had during the game, but there probably is a little more finesse to him than what we saw with Russell. Making your moves, and then knowing when to be humble, goes a long way towards winning.
Disadvantages – Does this guy have an “off” switch? We’re not quite sure. He’s going to be judged by his appearance as very intense, and if he doesn’t show a different side early on (i.e. stressing that he is a family man or trying to relate to other people), we could see the other tribes not relating to him very well. He has to be personal and at least act like he cares about some of the other players. If he really thinks that Russell played the game the right way, then he’s forgetting that people liking you is a necessary component to win a million bucks.
Prediction – Playing a hard, strong strategic game makes for great television — but it doesn’t make you a millionaire. There’s a difference between making moves as a means to an end, and then making moves that make other players look and feel stupid. Nobody wants to vote for someone in the end who they feel deliberately embarrassed them and made them feel like an idiot. This is why we feel like Boston Rob lost “All-Stars,” and why Russell lost both of his first two times; both were exceptional strategic players, but disregarded how their actions would make other people feel. While we do think Kyle has the potential to have a social game, we’re not sure we see it happening in practice. He’ll make it really far (possibly even the final three), but we have a really hard time seeing him get the votes to win.
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