While we will have some more to say on this episode over the weekend in our “Survivor: Blood vs. Water” analysis piece, we have to start this article off with this: The moment that Aras Baskauskas said in his confessional that it would be stupid for him and his brother Vytas to not make it to the end of the game, the game was afoot (with a nod to Tarzan for that quote).
Aras is a smart player, and always has been. The biggest issue with his strategy this time around was not gauging his own status as a threat with his brother in the game. The last time he played back in Panama, he had the luxury of Terry, a guy with a target just as big as him, and a pair of huge personalities in Shane and Courtney. He was much more capable of being under the radar there than here. He had a smart little seven-person alliance set up, but he made the wrong move in trusting Tyson and Gervase, who are apparently much closer than anyone thinks.
While there are many differences, Tyson proved in some ways this week that he and his fellow coconut thief in Gervase are similar to another famous twosome from his first season in JT and Stephen. He found an immunity idol, and they are subtly trying to run the show behind the scenes rather than in the forefront. Tyson getting injured is the best thing to happen to him, since it allows him to hide in the background, and use strategy rather than competition wins.
While Aras’ blindside was truly epic still (at least for him; we saw it coming a mile away), the duel at Redemption Island was not. This challenge was totally biased to someone like Laura M., who can hold on for dear life much harder than a big guy like John. Her return to the game was much more interesting than John’s, though, since there was a pretty funny story here in that her daughter was not that thrilled to have a target on her now. The immunity challenge? Well, it was memory. That’s not really exciting.
Challenges aside, merge episodes on the show are always great. We don’t get the sense that the numbers in the game are set now for sure, even if there was a line drawn tonight. This was intense, and we are so much more excited now for the rest of the game than we ever were before … and we are saying that as a guy who loves Aras as a player and picked him to win this season. Grade: B+.
What did you think about tonight’s “Survivor” episode, and do you think now was the right time for all parties involved to get rid of Aras? Share your thoughts in the comment box below, and click here to read some more news related to the show (including exclusive interviews).