Survivor: The Best For All Concerned Strategic and Tactical Analysis by Dr. EJ
November 11, 2016
I am relieved that Taylor is out of the game, and the players – all of them – should be, too.
As Adam said, even those who saw him as an ally were being dragged down by Taylor. But like the best remedies in the world, we don’t always accept what is best for us. But I’ll get to that after the analysis of the demise of:
Taylor: Not much to say here. You weren’t playing the game of Survivor. Millenials versus Gen X aside, you seemed to have no knowledge of what was important in this game. You focused on revenge of your “girlfriend,” rather than relating to the needs of your tribemates, and building trust. From a gameplay perspective, you have no further business in this game, and it’s good to see you gone.
Now, your tribemates should be happy, but…
Jason: You were given a gift of information from Adam – the reason you are on “the bottom.” Instead of gratitude, and, more importantly, instead of using that truth to your benefit, you turned on the man who told you. You could have, and still can, use the information to build a bond – apologize for the mistakes you made allying with Taylor, and ask how you can work together.
This can be done directly with Adam, but also with many others. Remember, you can start to build trust by revealing your own secret, your immunity idol. The previews show you doing this, and the secret getting around – the question is, did that happen because you told the right person, who spread the news in both of your interests, or the wrong person.
There are targets out there that can be used to gain time, either by allying with them – you could, for instance, join Jessica and Ken, Adam, etc. – or by shifting the immediate focus to them. But building trust, which you damaged by eating the tribe’s food, is strategic priority number one.
Will: The immediate target is off of you for now. If you stick with Jason as an ally, you have to help him build the trust, as detailed above. It would probably be better to distance yourself, seeing how he has been caught in the cardinal sin of enjoying stolen tribe food.
Admit your mistake, acknowledge how you were taken in by Taylor and Jay, and look to build alliances. Adam could be an ally as a fellow “mistake maker,” or a target as a liar like Taylor. Either way, the strategy is keeping the target off of you as long as possible and rebuilding alliances.
Hannah and Zeke: I saw the two of you struggling last night with the choice of whether to remain allied with Adam or not, and I think it was a good idea to dangle it out there – keep your options open with those who might vote him off.
It might be something to consider – his honesty has been with those outside his alliance, such as trying to work with Taylor and sharing information about his advantage with Taylor, and not with you or others with whom he voted.
Also, be aware of the “cracks’ in the Gen X alliance – it may pay to make a decision on Adam only when that group has been broken up. If Jessica is a target, she may need your support, as she could carry a number of other Gen X voters with her.
Adam: I think you have to carry your acknowledgment of mistakes back into camp, and with members of your alliance. They know you keep secrets, and it may be time to let those secrets out to those with whom you want to work. For instance, it might pay to let someone in on your immunity idol. But your general strategy is being less of a wildcard – that’s what got Taylor voted off, remember?
Gen Xs: As a whole, you guys stuck together, and I think that is a good strategy, at least until your numbers advantage is more solid. As such, Sunday’s plan about Jessica should wait. The talk about “cracks” in the alliance is not necessarily bad – it gives hope to the other players, who may make deals you can’t refuse – but allowing such a crack to materialize prematurely would probably be a mistake.
One thing I like about Survivor is that not everything is resolved at once. So many things came up in this episode: Jay’s status in the tribe; Adam’s lack of social acumen, and his secrets; the “cracks’ in the Gen Xers.
They aren’t dead issues yet! How will they play out? We may learn next week, and I’ll have updated strategic and tactical considerations based on the results.
Doctor EJ is a licensed clinical psychologist by trade, but his passions include the great game of Survivor, and its social machinations. He is also passionate about travel, and claims to fame include visiting all 50 US States, and losing 145 pounds, both of which are discussed at his blog, The Better Half's Travels at blogspot.com. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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