“Buyer’s remorse” is how Jeremy described his feelings after blindsiding Joe Anglim last week. That term is defined by Wikipedia as “The sense of regret after having made a purchase…It may stem from fear of making the wrong choice, guilt over extravagance, or a suspicion of having been overly influenced…” There’s no question that every move in the game of Survivor is critical, or like Spencer said, every single event can cause change in the game for the good or for the bad. And just like in sports, plays early in the game are just as important as plays late in the game, but it’s those late-in-the-game plays that everybody talks about, the ones that are over-analyzed and scrutinized, and the ones most people point to if the outcome doesn’t have the desired result. On Wednesday night’s episode of “Survivor: Cambodia,” some more crucial decisions were made, and only time will tell if they were choices worthy of remorse, regret or reward.
Don’t read this if you haven’t yet seen the most recent episode, as spoilers are to follow. Get caught up on Episode 13 here.
So Spencer tonight found himself in that classic Survivor position, a position that has existed every single season from Season 1 right on through tonight: Do I ultimately want to sit next to other, respectable players, or do I want to take a goat with me to the end? It’s a struggle that is at the heart of this show, one of the true “personality tests” that makes Survivor the greatest social experiment of all time. Because everyone can relate to that dilemma. On one hand, you think “If I want to be the best, I’ve got to beat the best.” It’s a true hero’s take on life. But on the other hand, that insecure side of you feels way smarter, better, more beautiful, propped up along other, “lesser” beings. It’s the whole “make sure your friends are uglier than you” social philosophy that is definitely a real thing.
Spencer ultimately decided to go the hero’s path. His fate is now sealed, he has shunned the Dark Side and has embraced the light. Of course, this approach has had mixed results over the years on Survivor. Kelly Wiglesworth knocked out poor Rudy to take Richard Hatch to the Final Two with her, and oh, how the history of Reality TV might have changed had she gone with the good over the bad back in Season 1. The very next season though, Colby Donaldson decided to take the much more well-liked Tina Wesson over Keith Famie, and it cost him the million as well. A small sample size I know, but the lesson learned here is, the person who often finds themselves in the pivotal spot to choose between the “hero” and the “goat,” usually finds that he wasn’t in control of his fate as much as he thought anyways. There isn’t really a “right choice” in any scenario, and thus, just another fascinating aspect of this amazing game.
It will be easy to look back on the season once we know the outcome, and judge Spencer’s decision during tonight’s episode. If he wins the game? He obviously made the right move. If he loses, or if he makes Final Three and then doesn’t win? This could have been a huge error. But then again, simply deciding to vote out Tasha tonight wouldn’t have guaranteed Spencer anything. And the possibilities of “what if?” are endless.
While the idea of getting rid of “goats” seems like a noble idea, it is a hypocritical one…Abi, Keith, Kimmi even…have all been kept in the game up to this point for the very reason that everyone else thinks they’ll win against them in the end. So to suddenly say now that “we can’t let these goats get any further” is a bit odd. Whether the show wants to show us or not – and despite all of the “voting blocks” this season – Kimmi, Jeremy, Tasha and Spencer have stuck together, for the most part, for a big part of the game. That would seem to mean that both Keith and Kelley are on the outside looking in…but with Kelley having an Idol and with Keith being a strong physical competitor down the stretch, things are truly building for an epic Finale next week.
One can only speculate on the preview clip about Probst saying “that’s the first time in 31 seasons” that something happened. Could both Kelley and Jeremy play Idols, negating every single vote? What would happen? Will this amazing season really come down to someone needing to pull a rock?
What are your thoughts? Who do you think will win Survivor this season? Who do you want to win? Any flaws in my assessments? Sound off in the comment section below!
Please check back (or subscribe at the top of this article), because you will not want to miss my exclusive one-on-one exit interview with Abi tomorrow (up by Thursday afternoon). So join me tomorrow and be back next week for my Finale Episode Preview on Wednesday morning followed by the last full Episode Recap and Analysis of the season on Wednesday night!
Be sure to check out one of my favorite Survivor sites as well, SurvivorFever.net.