‘Survivor: Kaoh Rong’ spotlight: Can Jennifer Lanzetti build a strong foundation in the game?

Jennifer Lanzetti -

Can you believe that we’re now just two weeks away from “Survivor: Kaoh Rong” coming on the air? You have to love the short hiatus! It’s ironic we say this given that for many of the castaways, it’s been almost a year since they were out playing the game, and since that time “Worlds Apart” finished and “Cambodia” both filmed and finished. That’s a heck of a layover!

Today, we’re spotlighting someone in Jennifer Lanzetti who, on paper, seems like the precise person you’d want on a tribe. She’s got a job as a contractor that could be very useful in setting up camp, and as a result of that she’s a super-hard worker and isn’t afraid of a challenge. Sure, her not liking to be wet while sleeping could be trouble if the weather in Cambodia is anything like it was on this past season, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. For now, let’s just focus on her game.

Age – 38

Location – Salt Lake City, Utah. There are actually a lot of memorable former Utah contestants, with Tyson Apostol, Jonas Otsuji, and Dawn Meehan all being recent examples.

Tribe – To Tang a.k.a. the Brawn tribe.

Occupation – Contractor. She’s super-proud of the work that she does, and seems to liken herself to a badass. She probably is one of the stronger, more confident women the show has had in a while, which should make for some good television if she sticks around.

Past “Survivor” comparison – She says Kim Spradlin, which makes us somewhat happy given that Kim may be the best first-time winner in the history of the show. However, we don’t actually view her as much of a Kim other than that both of them are strong and confident. She reminds us much more of Laura Morett, someone who was relatively closer to her in age when she first played and brought many similar personality attributes to the table. Both are leader-types with strong opinions and serious work ethics.

Things to know – Jennifer said on Twitter that she is actually friends with Jonas, which makes us smile mostly because Jonas probably could have been a better player on a season where Kim wasn’t just steamrolling through everyone with so many allies under her wing. She’s definitely a fighter in life given that she’s taken on Endometriosis, cancer, and addiction over the years and emerged on the other side. She also loves motorcycle riding.

Advantages – If you’re looking for a player who will be proactive out there, look no further. Jennifer’s going to do what she wants when she wants to do it, and won’t allow someone else to determine her fate. She could be good at rallying people behind her and forming tight bonds. Like another player on her tribe in Cydney, she’s also very good at getting along with men, which is good since there are three serious alpha-types on this tribe already who, judging from their personalities, could easily bro down and form a block. She’ll be good in the challenges and specifically stresses flexibility on the game. That’s always good as opposed to picking a strategy and being reluctant to waver.

Disadvantages – Our big fear with Jennifer is mostly that there are already too many big personalities on the Brawn tribe, and given that everyone is strong, her biggest asset isn’t really that much of an asset there. We could see her getting into arguments and clashing with people, and we’re also not sure how much knowledge of the show she has. (Sure, you could same the same about a few other people on this tribe, but we do at least know that Kyle Jason has seen enough to be familiar with Russell Hantz.)

Prediction – Sometimes, luck is a very key component in “Survivor.” If this was a different season with two tribes of ten or even three tribes of six without a casting gimmick, we could see her forming tight alliances and going pretty far as a person of value. This twist just doesn’t do her any favors. She may be fine if she can make it to a tribe swap, but we could see her in trouble in the early going just because of the dynamics of the Brawn tribe. She’s an impressive person, but she’s got an uphill battle in this game.

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