Flames And Endurance
Survivor Pearl Islands: Finale

Yum! Well, this is it, the finale. Woo-hoo, who will win? Darrah the Invisible Girl (too bad her voice isn't as forgettable as her non-verbal presence on the show)? Scoutmarm Lil of the perpetually gloomy demeanor? Bitchsnitch Sandra? The vile freak Jon Fairplay? Hmm, it's like having to choose which kind of ice pick one should buy to lobotomize oneself at home. Let's just get it over with, shall we?

Of course not, Probby has to get that annoying Prolonged Special "Previously" first. "Thirty-six days ago," Probby says - yeah, twelve weeks ago I actually had some time off at evenings to do some tai-chi and stuff instead of wasting my life watching the vastly overrated The Hagrid Show - and we proceed to revisit every eviction, every dubious triumph and snicker-inducing downfall, the Twist, the Merge, ohmigosh Hagrid got voted out it sux Hargrid is da best!!!11 now I support krista and sandra because they r like Hagrid's best friends and lil suxxxxx!!!!11111, Jon's Big Lie, Darrah's surprising Immunity Run, and more "lil suxxxxx sandra ruilez bcoz she is hAgrid's fren!!!!!!1111 roXor lil sux haGRid pwnz all of U!!111" rantings from imbeciles across the online forums, and now we're here, at the finale of the most desperate, most gimmick-ridden season of Survivor ever. While everyone says that this season is the best (and I suspect that is because they buy the Hagrid hype while I'm still trying to gargle off the bitter taste of him being shoved down my throat the entire season with an extra dose of Listerine), personally I find this the most artificial season ever. The Twist is okay, but the Twist, the Big Lie, and a completely redundant Twist at the first Tribal Council, and all the hype for this along with the show turning into The Hagrid Show combined leave a bad taste in my mouth. It makes good TV, I guess, but I also feel that, somehow, the fundamental values of the gameplay has been violated by so many gimmicks in one season alone.

Anyway, on with the show.

Oh, nice green canopy. Nice herons. An iguana chew on some leaves. It's day thirty-seven and Jon is asleep with his buff wrapped around his head to give Lil a run for the money in the Miss Sexy Grandmother contest. Lil wakes up and squints her eyes as she looks around her while yawning and rubbing at her face, Lil Miss Sunshine as always. Everyone is slowly waking up to the sound of a boat approaching. "You guys hear that?" Sandra asks.

There is a boat approaching Camp Bobo. A man hops off the boat some distance from the shore and wades through the water. It's Probby and he carries with him a tray of alcohol and orange juice (the latter for Lil, I guess) along with a small bag containing, as the Bobos soon find out, pastries and other good stuff. Everyone cheers up because Lil loves orange juice while the others enjoy nothing better than drinking alcohol before noon.

Probby remarks cattily as he approaches the camp that Jon is in bed with three women. "Another first!" he crows. Jon tells him, "Actually, it's not." Jon, please, that time when you shared the bed with your crossdressing buddies Thunder D, Ogre E, and Tranny T doesn't count.

Probby passes pastries around. Sandra sighs in delight, saying that she is soooo hungry. Lil sniffles. Jon grins. Darrah, er, she's somewhere... there, I guess. Probby pops open a champagne. If you must ask, no, he doesn't look as macho as when Burtman popped for Lil. I guess Colby's the one doing all the popping in their relationship. Everyone drinks up. It's beautiful how Sandra, Probby, and Jon make drinking alcohol at the early hours of the morning come off like something they do so naturally, probably every day.

Probby announces that he has to go back to the boat to get something for them. I hope it's a heavy wooden club he will use to beat them all senseless. Jon says that Probby rules. ("No, he doesn't! I'm really the man of the house!" Colby squawks indignantly - let's just ignore him. Shut up, Colby.) Lil says that she loves Probby and wonders whether Probby would like to join her troop. And see her woe-is-me face during every meeting? I think Probby would rather impale himself on a rusty pike first. It isn't long before Probby returns, holding up a bunch of letters. Dare I hope that these are lawsuit notices? Someone has to feel as pained as me while following this season, right? Alas, as the others shriek in joy, Probby announces that these letters are the letters from their loved ones. He hands the bundle over to the Bobos and then takes his leave after telling them that it's up to them to read the letters privately or to share them with the rest of the Bobos.

Lil immediately turns off the watering spout act, hugging Probby and asking him rather breathlessly whether he wants to join the Boy Scouts. Probby says vaguely, "Someday," knowing full well that he'd rather be honest about himself and Colby and would never join an organization that discriminates against their loving and happy relationship. ("Happy? Did you see how Probby drooled over the Feuhrer during the Reunion Show?" - oh, don't cry, Colby, you'll have lots of time to make up to Probby when All Stars starts next season.)

Jon reads. There is no indication of whom the letter is from or how he feels about the letter. Maybe it's a letter from Ron Jeremy telling Jon that he makes Ron Jeremy look like a god in comparison. Or maybe it's a letter from that secret lab in Area 51 telling Jon that, from DNA tests, he's actually not human but a mutated babboon flea. Then again, it could be a letter filled with thumb prints because none of his friends and family members are literate enough to write. I don't know, and to be honest, I don't care. Jon is a vile dumbass, and that's enough for me.

Darrah tells the camera that they receive letters from home and she thinks that it is awesome. Well, thank you for telling me the obvious, Darrah. She now reads her letters, apparently it's from a friend Bailey or Belly (shudders, I hope she doesn't mean that infamous bar) whom she calls prissy. She then says in between wiping away at her tears how glad she is that her dog is okay. Maybe Bailey/Belly is her amazing dog that has written that letter. She then says that she hopes her family is okay. Bailey/Belly must be a really smart dog.

Sandra reads her letters. She tells the camera that she has four letters, one from her husband, one from each of her two children, and one from her mother. She talks about how wonderful it is that she hears from her family and what not, and the camera pans on a letter from one of her kids, right there at the "We love you!", printed in large font. Sheesh, I guess nowadays nobody writes letters anymore with their own hands.

The reading-glasses-wearing Lil, on the other hand, is embarrassing to watch as she turns on the weepy-eyed drama queen act, boo-hoo-hooing at the top of her voice as she grips at her letters and reads them as if she's reading about a family tragedy. Jon watches from a corner, his disgust showing very evidently on his face. I don't know, but it always seems a little too dramatic for people like Lil to go over the top in their "I miss everybody" antics. She will be seeing everybody again within the next few days. If I go on this show, you'd bet that I will have dreams of spending the million dollars to keep me going. After all, it's only a little more than a month that she is separated from her family. I cringe as Lil talks about how she has to be strong because her family tells her that - and she reads the letter from her daughter aloud - "someone has to win, someone has to lose, and I'd rather someone lose." In short, her family wants to see the money. Lil acts as if everybody she knows has disowned her and kicked her to the curb, wailing and making as many grotesque impersonations as she could of every California Raisins she has ever eaten.

Jon, the spokesperson of the Association of Drunk and Obnoxious Relics Looking Like Rejects From A 1970s Porn Movie, tells the camera that Lil's hysterics are overshadowing everyone else's letter. Because the man that talked about the Big Lie and hogging the screen while trying to be funny knows all about toning down one's antics in order to be considerate of others. He adds that he can try using Lil's Tears Of The Damned antics to sway Darrah and Sandra into bringing him with them to the Final Three, his reasoning being that Lil may bring on the tears and hysterics at the Final Tribal Council to win the sympathies of everybody. Since we are talking about a Jury consisting of the likes of Hagrid, Cokecasta, Burtman, T&A, and Ryan O, all of whom have an ax to grind with Lil, I don't think they will be moved by Lil's boo-hoo-hooes. But hey, a plan is still a plan, I guess.

Now everyone is done with his or her letters and the Bobos are lying around on the shelter floor. Jon asks them whether the three women are taking themselves to the Final Three while taking him out in the next Tribal Council. Not getting an answer, he says aloud, "I take that as a yes." In his interview, he says that the three women have a bond because they have self-inferiority issues as they are women and he is a man. Ah, Jon, still trying to be mean and nasty to the bitter end. I can see right through you, you little prick, your feeble jabs at trying to get a raise out of people are not working at all. How sad that Jon tries so much to play to the camera only to come off as pretty lame compared to the real bad guys like Dr Evil of Big Brother 2.

Come to think of it, we really don't have a hot and heartless villain on reality shows since Dr Evil. Charismatic and evil villainesses, yes, but villains, no. What happened to hot and evil men? I can't believe that LA is somehow short on such men.

Back at the camp, Jon tells Lil that he is not happy with Sandra outlasting him. Lil has no problems with that, as expected, saying that she doesn't want to finish third. I don't know if Burnetto has edited some of this conversation, but the entire argument between Jon and Lil seems choppy and Lil's answers to Jon are sometimes non-sequitur. Wait, then again, it's Lil I'm talking about here. Oh well. Jon says loudly so that Sandra and Darrah can hear his every word, telling Lil that she will win in the Final Two by pulling out "hearts and flowers" just like she was "rehearsing" earlier. He tells Lil that Darrah and Sandra will not want her with them in the Final Two. Lil, biting the bait, turns to Darrah who is lying on the floor beside her. She asks Darrah whether Darrah will take Lil to the Final Two. Darrah says that she's not going to be dragged in the middle of the argument. Lil presses her, and she finally says weakly that she will get her butt kicked if she takes Lil to the Final Two. Jon, with a triumphant grin, watches as Lil demands to know whether Darrah intends to take Sandra along with her instead of Lil. Darrah mutters that she doesn't know what she wants to do and turns her back to Lil.

Seriously, what does Lil expect her to say? It is ridiculous that Lil expects Darrah to commit fully to her within earshot of Jon and presumably Sandra (I can't see Sandra around on the camera). Lil is very annoyed at Darrah's answer and she flounces off from the shelter to lie on the nearby hammock, looking as if she has just swallowed Nicaragua and it tastes awful. Darrah calls out to her, asking if Lil is mad at her. Lil answers that she is not mad at Darrah, it's just that Lil's sitting on the shelter makes her mad. Wow. She complains to the camera that nobody wants to take her to the Final Two because she's "too nice". You really think that, Lil?

Back at the shelter, Jon tells Darrah that she must persuade Sandra to get rid of Lil. Darrah tells the camera that she thinks that Jon's Final Three of her, Sandra, and him is very workable so she will go along with it, never mind that she isn't sure if she can trust Jon.

Now Darrah and Sandra are talking a walk along Liaison Beach. Darrah calls Lil selfish because Lil expects everyone to take her to the Final Two even if there is no chance that anyone will beat Lil there. If you are the kind that enjoy Burnetto's brand of Moments of Heavy Irony, here you go, the first Moment Of Heavy Irony of the show. Sandra tells the camera that she's okay with it - she's okay with any plan as long as it's not her that's going at the end of the day.

Now Sandra and Jon are lazing on the shelter floor when Lil stomps up to them and demands that Jon leaves because she wants to talk to Sandra in private. Because everybody that crosses Lil must go down (see the Feuhrer and Burtman), Lil now proposes to Sandra that they vote out Darrah instead of Jon. Her argument is that Darrah has won three Immunity Challenges in a row so she is far stronger than the rest of them. Removing her will level the playing field for Jon, Sandra, and Lil to make it to the Final Two. Sandra, of course, agrees as long as she's not the one at the chopping block. Lil says that she will talk to Jon after this. So, she calls Jon over to them, and Jon meekly runs to her. Sandra tells Jon that "the decision is finalized". Lil chimes in that Darrah must go instead of Jon. Jon says okay, he can "accept that" - as if he has any other choice, really - and he will go along with them. In his interview, he laughs and remarks on how crazy it is that he has managed to actually create a rift between Lil and Darrah. The camera pans on Darrah and Lil speaking, although none of what they are saying are shown. Sandra, in her interview, reiterates that she will go along with any plan and decision as long as it isn't her that's on the chopping block.

"Guys! Sea-mail!" Darrah calls, unaware of her impending downfall as she collects the said chest-mail from, er, a chest. As she reads out some dumb lines about one's peers determining one's fate, Sandra repeats to the camera that what the "tree-mail" (as she calls it) says. She believes that their fates will be determined by the Jury at the Tribal Council right away so they are all "freaking out". Jon, in his interview, says that he has nothing to fear as he is the "king of men" while the others are mere women. He amended that he may lose if there is a "getting pregnant contest" though. Jon is trying way too hard and yes, this is another of Burnetto's Moments Of Heavy Irony, but it's not so much of a fun kind of irony when Jon is so dumb at trying to be mean and evil.

The Bobos row their canoe to the Tribal Council.

Probby awaits for them at the Tribal Council. Once the Bobos are seated, he announces the entrance of the Jury. Ryan O, meh, Hagrid, yucks, T&A, Cokecasta, meh, and holy crappoli, Burtman has shaved his facial hair except for an unflattering goatee. He looks as if he has lost even more mojo than Ryan O. Probby retrieves the Mattel Sabre from Darrah and explains the Twist of the Immunity Challenge. No, the Jury members aren't coming back to compete to send two of their own back into the game, so don't worry. Instead, the Jury will compete as one single block against each of the Bobos to win Immunity. First to answer five questions correctly wins Immunity. If the Jury wins it, all four Bobos are vulnerable to elimination.

Today's Immunity Challenge is a Panama trivia game and unexpectedly, Hagrid is elected the Writer and the Board Holder of the Jury. It must be exhausting to be Hagrid's friend as one will have to let him get all the attention all the time.

First question. Probby asks about a "fire triangle". Score one for Lil, Jon, and the Jury. Question two, give the year Captain Morgan razed Panama City. T&A knows this one and she whispers the answer into Hagrid's ear. The Jury along with Sandra and Darrah get the question right. Question three - apparently the best way to avoid a shark attack is to avoid getting into water. Jon gets this right. Gee, I thought I heard in The Amazing Race 4 that it is... never mind. Question four - everyone knows that the Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. Question five - only the Jury knows that the star berth of a vessel refers to the right side of the vessel. Question six - the Jury, Jon, and Lil answer correctly that Costa Rica borders Panama. If you are keeping track, by the sixth question the Jury has had five questions answered correctly so the Jury wins Immunity. Yay. Isn't this an exciting Twist?

Burtman and Hagrid thump fists because they are the greatest males to ever walk the earth bar none. Probby says that some people in the Jury have never held the Sabre and hence passes it to Cokecasta, who holds it to her chest as if it's her biggest stash ever. Jon shakes his head because he can't believe that he lost. Yeah, I can't believe it either.

Now we move straight to Tribal Council. Probby grins at the Bobos and asks Jon how he feels that everyone is without Immunity tonight. Jon says that nothing has changed. Probby talks about letters and of course Lil bursts into tears again, sheesh. Jon shakes his head again. Quickly, Probby turns to Darrah and asks her about her strategy. She says that she is taking a day at a time without thinking too much about whom she wants to square off at the Final Two. Sandra says that she is afraid to leave the shelter these days because she can't even take a "piss break" without worrying that she is missing on something important. As if she can't squat at the bushes while eavesdropping. Lil thinks otherwise - she doesn't care too much because the others have said that they do not want her to be at the Final Two with them. She adds that she is a good person but if she is outside the game, she won't like the person she has become. Huh? Is she saying that she doesn't like the fact that she is a good person? Darrah doesn't understand why she is a physical threat as she weighs very little - apparently she is such a nonentity that she doesn't even remember that she won the last three Immunity Challenges. Probby asks Jon if he's being so unlikeable as a strategic gameplan, wondering aloud whether Jon fears that the Jury will hand Lil the prize based on her "integrity". Jon admits that he hopes his odiousness will persuade the others to keep him around. He adds that he is still working on a way to win over the Jury and the Jury smiles at this. Then it's time to vote.

Jon - Darrah.

Lil - Darrah. "Darrah, you're too strong of a competitor. When you told me that you wouldn't take me to the Final Two after I've saved you twice now, I have no choice." See? Anyone that tells Lil no will pay because Lil thinks that she is so nice that everyone must take her to the Final Two. It'll be funny if Lil isn't turning out to be this season's black widow.

Sandra - Darrah.

Darrah - Lil. "Lil, I'm voting for you tonight because, um, I'm just tired of listening to you whine and saying that you won't win the Jury vote when you know you will."

Darrah looks really annoyed when she steps up to get her torch snuffed out. After she has walked down the path to Loser Lodge, Probby turns to the remaining three Bobos and comments that the "three weakest" have banded together to remove their biggest "physical threat". With that enlightening remark, he sends them back to Camp.

In her final words, Darrah says, looking really angry, that she doesn't understand why they consider her a physical threat when she weighs only "sixty pounds soaking wet". I guess she still doesn't get it and probably never will. She calls Lil and Jon snakes and lashes out at Lil for pretending not to know how to play the game. Still, she says that it's been a great experience that she will go through again if given the chance. Darrah has transcended invisibility - she's now an invisible sore loser.

The Bobos return to their camp, talking about Darrah being the latest to be blindsided to Loser Lodge. Sandra says that Darrah must go because she is you-know-what. Lil, after taking off her pants, asks Jon if Lil is considered a threat. Jon says that Darrah was targetting for Lil earlier the day and Lil is as a result pleased that the Tribal Council went the way it did.

Sandra returns with a "sea-mail", as she calls it. Jon is surprised and asks her to read it. The "sea-mail" tells them to go down to the "pirate's cove" by sunrise for the final Immunity Challenge. None of them is pleased at having to wake up "early early", as Sandra puts it and all groan and moan to each other. Sandra says that this Immunity Challenge is very important. What an astute lady. Then she joins the others on the shelter and tries to sleep.

Morning, day thirty-eight. So much for sunrise - the sun is high in the sky when the three Bobos row up to Probby who is waiting for them at the beach. "Come on in, guys," he says, ignoring the fact that you cannot "come on in" to a beach. The camera pans to two torches erected side by side on the beach, labelled with the names of Ryan O and the Feuhrer. Oh no, sappy Walk of Remembrance time. Probby tells them that the three Bobos can pay tribute to their former tribesmates by taking their torches and then say a few words about them when they place the torches on the pirate ship replica located a distance behind Probby. Apparently this is a modified version of the old pirate practice of... um, something. I'm sure Burnetto has some story made-up for this latest nonsense. And then the three Bobos will take up muskets and shoot flares onto the ship to set it on fire. That ship isn't cheap, so this is probably the most expensive way to waste some screen time on people who aren't even dead enough to deserve such honor. Probby separates Osten's torch and places it on the ground, saying that because Osten quitted, he doesn't deserve to be paid tribute this way.

As the Bobos each grab a bundle of torches and walk to the ship, it begins to rain. Or maybe Burnetto gets some minimum wage workers to spray water from hoses from treetops over the Bobos.

Okay, tribute time. First, Nicole. Lil says that Nicole has a wonderful spirit. I have a wonderful spirit too, and I'm sure the cats in the alley have them too. Jon says that Nicole has a "rocking body". He should know - I bet women everywhere are rocking their bodies in disgust upon his approach before kicking his scrawny bum up and down the place. Next, Nerd&Shoulders. Lil immediately blubbers on cue as she goes on and on about him being her pure-hearted friend and how she didn't cry until he was booted out. Eeeuw, get a grip, Lil. She's really coming off like some dotty bag lady. Michelle is the third to receive the Bobos' horrific eulogy. Sandra says that it's a shame that she doesn't know her better as Michelle is a fun person. Cue Michelle doing a backflip into the sea. Shawn Muggwitt. Sandra says diplomatically that Shawn is a great guy with tons of energy and that he loves to eat. The camera flashes back to Shawn holding up a lobster like he's never seen one before. Oh, the Feuhrer. It should have been Probby giving the eulogy as he's the only guy that misses that man so much, but Lil has to do the talking instead. She calls him a leader that tried hard to make sure that everyone was fair, whatever that means.

Ryan O now. Sandra calls him a pleasant and loving guy and she is surprised at how she kind of misses him once he's gone. The camera shows a close-up of Ryan O, smiling, blue-eyed, and my heart stops beating for a few seconds as I indulge myself in a moment of pig-tailed fangirlish weakness. Grow back that stubble, Ryan O, and meet me at midnight come one summer's night when we'll buy a pelican and run away to Monaco. Hagrid. Jon calls him the greatest guy ever - oh please - and Sandra says that she is starving with him not around. It's T&A's turn where Lil thanks her for her friendship. Cokecasta now, and Sandra says that she misses Cokecasta the most as Cokecasta is the "most real thing" to her. She hopes that they can be "buddy buddy" after the show. Burtman now. Jon says that he is still surprised at how much he likes his best friend on the show. He shouldn't be. They are the new Beauty and the Beast, only this time they have to wear paper bags over their heads to qualify as "Beauty" to the other person's "Beast". Personality-wise, Jon and Burtman are two peas in a pod. Lil gives Burtman a dramatic salute, calling him her Eagle Scout. She thanks him for his still remembering the oath. Come on, Lil, not everything should revolve around the Boy Scouts movement. Finally, Darrah. Um... uh... as Lil and Sandra try to think of something to say, finally, Jon says as he misses her as she is as nice as she is cute. Camera shows Darrah taking a shower. Did I miss the memo where Darrah was appointed the babe of the show?

As the Bobos leave the ship, Burnetto shows an Osten tribute montage. Osten standing by the sea looking like a king. Oops, he almost drowned. Ouch, he decided to quit. Yikes, he laid down his torch. Oh, he was gone from the show.

Lil is flanked by Sandra and Jon and all three hook their arms together as they approach the table where the flare muskets await. They take a musket each. "Ready, aim, fire!" Then the ship burns despite the rain (maybe Burnetto asked his slaves to tone down the strength of the sprinklers) and everyone watches. I can't help thinking, won't those torches and that ship be better off auctioned at eBay? There will be some crazy Hagrid fans that will pay thousands of dollars to get their hands on everything he has touched.

The camera pans on a three small square wooden platforms and one large rectangular wooden platform floating on the sea, all platforms linked by sturdy ropes so that they don't drift away from each other. It is now time for the Immunity Challenge. The three Bobos stand on a square platform each while Probby stands on the largest platform. The rules for this Challenge are simple: the Survivor to stay on the platform the longest without his or her knees or bottom touching the floor will win. Jon laces up his shoes and Probby announces that the final Immunity Challenge of the season has begun.

Jon has his legs bent and spread wide, his arms clutching at the edge before him so that he looks like a very ugly and very skinny bastard kid of a Fraggle Rock creature and Kermit the Frog. Lil has a similar position, but her balance is noticeably better. Sandra is everywhere on the platform as she tries to get into a position she is comfortable with.

Fifteen minutes have passed. Probby asks how they are doing. Jon complains that his feet are numb. Lil says she feels good. Sandra, in response to Probby's question, says that she does feel that she is worth a million dollars. Probby tells them that the big waves are coming so everyone has better hang on tight. Right on cue, Sandra trips and lands on her backside on the platform. "Oops!" She's out.

Jon turns to Lil and asks whether she wants to make a deal. She turns him down. He tells her that she is crazy to turn him down, upon which she calmly tells him that her daughter wants to be a doctor, meaning that she wants the money and he can bloody well shut up now. Jon begins to ask her in a nasty tone whether she understands how important his deal is. Lil tells him to shut up. Jon rather desperately tells her that he will take her to the Final Two if she will let him win Immunity. She asks him whether he trusts her. If he trusts her, then he can jump off the platform now. Jon muses aloud that he isn't sure whether he can trust her. "Then drop it!" she snaps at him.

"It looks like you have to win this on your own," Probby interjects cheerfully from his comfortable sitting position on his platform. Ooh, rub it in, darling!

Thirty minutes down. Lil looks all calm and zenned up while Jon looks like he's struggling to keep his position. Probby asks Jon how he is feeling. "Sucks!" Jon answers through gritted teeth and Sandra laughs. Probby now asks Lil whom she wants to take to the Final Two. She asks Jon how many people he has screwed over in his game. Cornered, Jon says, "Everyone?" Lil announces that she does aerobics. "Okay," Jon says weakly. "My knees are great," Lil declares. "Okay," Jon mewls. "These are called squats in aerobics," Lil says, referring to her position. "Okay," Jon whimpers piteously.

"I think Lil just said game on," Probby cuts in.

"I think Lil just said game over," Jon corrects him.

Two hours down. Lil seems to be holding on good without breaking a sweat. Jon is really in pain and it shows on his face. He asks her whether she will deal with him now. No, she isn't, sorry. He offers to hand Immunity over to her if she promises to take him with her to the Final Two. Lil says that she is not promising anything. That's not a deal, he protests. Well, there's no deal then, Lil tells him. Sandra is grinning like the cat that has just learned how to use the bottle opener on the milk bottles around the house. Probby asks Jon whether he is confident on winning this Immunity. "Not extremely," Jon answers even as he wobbles only to catch his balance in time before he pitches over into the sea. And he's down at the two hours and forty-five minutes mark. Lil has won the final Immunity Challenge.

Now, I have seen people slagging off Lil, saying that she doesn't deserve to be in the Final Two. Look, I will be the first to say that I don't like this woman's victim act and her non-stop tears and whines and moans and what-not, but there is one thing that I will not deny and that is Lil won the Final Immunity Challenge fair and square in a really impressive display of endurance. Best of all, she trounces the pathetic blow-hard freak Jon, handing him his own manhood on a silver platter for him to choke on it. Lil may not deserve to win, but she damned well deserve to be in the Final Two based on her performance, and anyone else that tells me otherwise is just an overly-emotional Hagrid groupie that has projected his or her support on his ally Sandra. So good job, Lil, a damned good job indeed!

Lil pulls on her scoutmarm jacket and swims towards Probby to get her Mattel Sabre for the first time on the show. She stumbles when her legs give way a little, and Probby steadies her. "No, I'm fine," she assures him. Probby tells her that she has one afternoon to think of whom she wants to take with her to the Final Two and commends her for a reward well-earned. Jon dives down into the water and Sandra follows suit. Sandra hugs Lil and they row the boat back to camp while Jon sits between the two women, still in pain from his ordeal and from his shattered ego as well, no doubt. It is a beautiful sight, Jon in pain.

Back at camp, Lil says aloud, "That was fun!" as she hooks up the Mattel Sabre. She tells the camera that she won the Immunity for herself and herself alone. There is no game or intrigue here, just survival as she knows that neither Jon nor Sandra will take her to the Final Two if she doesn't win the Mattel Sabre. Sandra and Lil are talking to each other while lying on the shelter, where sneaky Sandra tells Lil that she too has a husband and kids to provide for, no doubt preying on Lil's self-righteousness to dump Jon. In her interview, Sandra thinks that she's leaving tonight because Jon is a smarter choice to take to the Final Two. Meanwhile, Jon is hobbling along the path as he tells the camera that he is trying to work the circulation back to normal in his lower extremities. He says that the Immunity Challenge was the most "hardcore" thing he has done. He says that his gut instincts tell him that he is going home. How lovely is it to see this man's very fate lies in the hands of a woman whose age and gameplay he has taken pains to denigrate throughout the show.

Back at camp, Sandra now tells Lil that she has always went along with Lil's plans, so maybe now Lil can go along with Sandra's plan to be in the Final Two? Both of them laugh over this.

In her interview, Lil thinks about her choices. Sandra is a mother and wife and she works, Lil says, finding this aspect of Sandra a plus. Sandra however has friends on the Jury - a minus. Back at camp, Jon is telling Lil that if Lil takes Sandra, it will be a six-one win in Sandra's favor. "Can you live with that?" he asks her. Lil says that Burtman likes Jon. Jon smoothly says that Burtman's vote will be the only vote in his favor. Back in her interview, Lil wonders whether Jon will win because he can claim that he plays the game better than Lil. Actually, if you ask me, there is no way Lil can win, regardless of whom she takes to the Final Two. She has burned too many bridges to get where she was.

Lil hums Amazing Grace as the three of them get ready for tonight's Tribal Council. She is really strange, I tell you. I won't want to be her neighbor.

Night has fallen and Probby waits until the three Bobos and the Jury are settled down before unleashing his chit-chat session. Talking about their tribute to the fallen comrades, Jon unleashes the first reason why Lil cannot win over him by smartly saying that he is particularly moved when they paid tribute to Burtman (clean shaven now but still looking mojo-free) and Hagrid (who preens at Jon's words - what a pathetic and easy bait) because these two men are the strongest players. Sandra unleashes reason number two why Lil cannot win against her either - she says that she is shocked that Lil trounced Jon at the Immunity Challenge, praising Lil's composure and all that so that Lil will like her even better. Both of these Bobos talk rings around Lil, especially Sandra. When asked, Lil says that her decision will be based on whom she thinks she can beat. Note that as she speaks, she is already putting a me versus the Jury air as she talks about people loving Sandra for being their big sister versus Jon's constant gameplay. She is giving the Jury reasons to vote for the other person as opposed to voting for her.

Lil goes to vote as she's the only person whose vote matters. Probby goes to get the vote. Jon sits there with that V-for-Vapid posture of his but there's no escaping the snuff as Probby reads out the vote: "Johny Fairplay". Something tells me that Lil has never won a spelling bee contest in her life. Burtman looks away, in shock as well as disappointment. That guy really wants his new best buddy to win the money. Sandra gasps in shock and hugs Lil as Jon, totally defeated by Lil, leaves the Tribal Council. Probby tells them to think of what they will tell the Jury tomorrow and wish them good night.

Jon's final words are all about how proud he is of himself and how good it was to be the last man (literally) standing on the show. Oh shut up. I think this man has serious insecurities about manhood to keep bringing up his sex on this show.

Back at the camp, Sandra is still reeling from the surprise. She is so sure that she is going that she has everything packed up and ready to go. The both of them share a moment of glee when Lil announces that they are the two "sole Survivors". You can't be sole if there are two of you... oh, never mind. Sandra thanks Lil and Lil says that she does not regret taking Sandra along with her. In her interview, she hopes that she has more friends on the Jury than Sandra. It's a good thing I am not drinking at that moment or I would have choked to death. Lil also says that she is more comfortable with the idea of Sandra winning rather than Jon. Yes, me too - thank you, Lil, for that. Thank you so much. She tells Sandra that she feels an affinity for Sandra because they are both mothers and wives. Sandra says that she is ready to leave but she is grateful that she is still here. They both decide to relax until the next Tribal Council.

Day thirty-nine, morning. Birds fly in the sky. Camera pans on nice cliffs and beautiful green canopies. There's Lil, standing on the beach and letting the waters run over her bare feet. She talks about how this experience is not for the faint of heart. People sitting comfortably in their living rooms cannot judge her or the other Survivors as they have no idea how this experience is so different from camping a trip, she says, adding that her body is breaking down and she has no energy or spirit left. Oh please, what does she think reality TV shows are for? Not for the audience's enlightenment, that's for sure. If I do get on this show, I invite everybody to judge and mock me. However, also expect me to mock and judge you back - that's how it works.

Sandra is happier than Lil because she has never received any votes before and now she can't wait to receive them! She predicts a close fight between her and Lil. She hopes that she will win.

Lil thanks the Almighty as she and Sandra depart for the last Tribal Council later that day. They promise themselves that they won't look back, but they look back anyway. A female aria starts playing as Lil and Sandra paddle towards the Tribal Council, framed by the sunset and watched by a kingfisher.

Now it's time for the members of the Jury to weigh in on Sandra and Lil. Ryan O says that it is pretty weird but amazing to realize that he has a part in deciding who will get a million dollars. He is under a lot of pressure (which I happily volunteer to ease - yeah, yeah, I'll shut up now) but he will try to make sure that the person he feels most deserving will eventually get the money.

T&A has a balanced viewpoint. She compliments Lil for having the guts to last this long when the odds are stacked against her and she also commends Sandra for being forthright, blunt, but honest. I really like her. Why can't she be in the Final Two?

Burtman steals his speech from Dr Dave at Amazon, saying that everyone here has lied to everyone else so the one that answers his question the best will win the money. Whatever - go ask Jon to kiss your wounded ego and make it feel better.

Cokecasta says that this Final Two is made up of the most unlikeliest people, being that Lil and Sandra would normally be the first person voted out of their tribes. We must have caught her at her rare lucid moments.

A whale in the sea. Don't ask.

Darrah hopes to lash out at how the others played the game better than she, only she tries to say that she wants to tell them on how they have treated her. Or something. This lady has nothing decent to say at all throughout the entire season. Come to think of it, she has nothing decent to contribute to this season, period.

Hagrid, of course, is All About Him. He hopes that Lil and Sandra are grateful to be where they are in the situation "they have been given and earned". Given by who? By him, perhaps? What crock. He goes on to say that he will be a force behind a life-changing experience, that is, he is "going to take one little housewife, one little mama, and make their lives, their husband's lives, and their kids' lives different". Yes, people, he will make a difference, he will make someone happy, woo! I really, really hate this guy.

Jon says that he should have won, the other two don't deserve to be here, and he just wants to have fun at the Tribal Council. I've wasted enough bile on this jerk and I won't dignify his imbecile comments with any more words from me.

Da-dum, it's now Tribal Council time and the two women walk in. The Jury walk in too. Jon has cleaned up and is now looking like Ron Jeremy after an accident inside a garbage truck. Probby invites the women to throw their sales pitch at the Jury.

Sandra says that she is a team player - haw haw - and she also has everyone's back - chortle, chortle. She also is always ready to throw a vote for anybody that wants it, so in a way, I guess she really is a team player. Anyway, that's why she thinks she deserves to win.

Lil - oh boy. Talk about eating one's foot raw. She refers to herself in third person, saying that "Lillian Morris" came here to be Lillian Morris and nobody else, and Lillian worked hard while other people were sleeping, and she always tried to do good by others. She also said that there were three people that promised to take her to the Final Three only to back out. That would be Burtman, Darrah, and... Jon, perhaps? Anyway, it's a bad start because she is already alienating the Jury by talking about how morally superior she is to the others. With this bunch of Jury, you don't fight with them, you stroke their egos.

Now Probby invites the Jury members to rip the Final Two to shreds. And oh boy, talk about a particularly sore and hostile bunch of losers.

Ryan O is first. He asks Lil why she deserves his vote as she had ten days out of the Game being an Outcast. Lil's answer is really bad - she just says that being an Outcast isn't easy. Just like being Lillian Morris, professional martyr. If I were her, I would have explain how hard it is mentally to be in a game where everyone is hostile against you, taking this opportunity to thank Hagrid and Burtman for their acceptance of her, that sort of thing. Ryan O asks Sandra to defend herself from accusations that she merely rode on people's coattails all the way to the Final Two. Sandra scoffs at this, challenging Ryan O to name whose coattails she rode once Hagrid was gone from the show. Ryan O smiles briefly, as he should. Sassy Sandra has pretty much given him the finger with a playful wink along with it.

Hagrid. Oh, do I have to? Can I just blank him out? He doesn't hold back, heading straight for Lil's jurgular, accusing her of lying to him and what-not. Worse, he accuses Lil of betraying the scout uniform she wore because you are not supposed to lie on this show. Remember, Hagrid says that everyone else should do the right thing and lose with honor to him. Bull! Hagrid is a troubled teens counselor. Why can he lie when Lil can't? Yes, Hagrid has lied - he lied to Shawn about taking him to the Final Three, among other things. He wants Lil to tell him exactly when she has lied to him. He wants Lil to confess that everything she has told him is a lie! Repent! Lil, to her credit, stands firm against this disgusting display of bluster and tells him that it is not true that everything she says is a lie. Their personal talks about their family - she never lied there. She only lied to him that time when Hagrid was ousted because she had to take care of her own interests. A reasonable explanation, to which Hagrid just rolls his eyes in disgust because the only response he will accept is Lil tearfully apologizing to him for ever trouncing the Great Buffoon Hagrid in this game. Probby cuts him off and he acts as if yeah, it's a good thing he cut short Lil's roasting because Lil will never be honest. Please, Hagrid, take your own ego and choke on it and die, because watching you right now, my dislike actually swells close to cold, hard, and outright hatred. And of course, to Sandra, he is all happy peacecakes and asks her whether she knows he will be leaving that day. She says no, explaining that she threw her vote to Jon because she thought Darrah was leaving. Hagrid is happy, because Sandra loves him and will never betray him so la-la-la, Hagrid is still the best, woo-hoo. She sneakily deflects the blame of Hagrid's ouster on Jon, calling him a snake that cannot be trusted. Hagrid, of course, agrees whole-heartedly with that.

T&A is next and she asks them both to explain why the other person doesn't deserve to win and why they should. Sandra tells Lil not to hold back and the Jury chuckles - another point for Sandra, as if she needs any more points. Lil says that Sandra isn't a nice person at all times and that she rode on people's coattails. Sometimes she even wonders whether Sandra has any thought of her own. Sandra fires back by saying that Lil is responsible for the booting of every one on the Jury. The other members of the Jury nod. If you can't tell by now, it's a free-for-all witchhunt to see who will rip Lil apart the fastest.

Cokecasta. Another FUBAR contestant. She rips Lil apart for constantly apologizing, forgetting the fact that she, Sandra, and especially Hagrid are the ones that laid the guilt trip on Lil in the first place. I'm not sure if she is even asking a question. Lil says that she is genuinely sorry for the day they voted Hagrid out and when Cokecasta accuses her of hiding behind her scout's oath to lie and do nasty things, Lil denies that. She lied for the first time on the show to Hagrid and since then, she realizes that she has to lie on the show to go to the very end. "So I guess - that's it?" Cokecasta snorts. What a bitch. Lil has answered her questions and just because it's not Lil groveling, she acts as if Lil is not worthy. She and Hagrid can power a blimp from the hot air of their ego alone. To Sandra, she also doesn't ask a question as much as she tries to help Sandra overcome the riding-the-coattails accusation by suggesting that Sandra eavesdropped around a lot and got T&A and Darrah to plot a Burtman coup. Even though she ends up paying the price for this plot, T&A nods in the Jury bench.

Burtman asks them about their survival skills. Because that's obviously his strongest point and he probably hopes someone will pitch in and tell him he's the greatest. Lil lists down her scoutmistress knowledge and rates herself a seven while Sandra meekly says that she can last okay for the first few days, but after that she'll be in problem. She rates herself a five. What kind of question is this? It's not as if Burtman will vote for Lil anyway, and also note that Lil answered Burtman's question better than Sandra but he voted for Sandra anyway. Who's the hypocrite here?

Darrah. She's very bitter, but then again, so's almost the whole Jury. Like her entire verbal contribution to the show, her question is just as pathetic because it is basically a repeat of T&A's question. She wants to know how those two end up in the Final Two. Sandra says that she gets here because everyone else has a bigger fish to fry and she is willing to go along with everyone's plans as long as she can push the boat away from her - or something. Lil says that she is helped along some, but she also makes some active decisions along the way.

Trust Jon to ask the most pretentious question - he wants to know how the two women represent their "constituents", Puerto Rican and scouts. Because Jon is all about representing, y'all. Sandra gives some crock about Perto Rican looking out for themselves while being sassy while Lil stupidly admits that she represented the Scouts badly. What happens next is not shown on TV, but it's a truly horrid and hypocritical session where Jon savages Lil for "betraying" the Scouts and how the Scouts will be ashamed of her. If I'm Lil, I'll simply tell him to screw himself with Hagrid's head, but Lil is Lil and Lil crumbles under pressure.

Now it's the final sales pitch. Sandra says that she has played the game the best she knew how, she is a good person, and she has no regrets. Lil, having eaten her foot, is now making her way to her knee by saying that she regrets lying to them and she wishes that she has never worn this uniform. While her asking them to overlook her uniform is reasonable, confirming their suspicions about her is never a wise thing. Never let the Jury in any way believe that they are right in thinking the worst of you - that's how people lose the million dollars on this show. She does deserve my applause when she says that all those aspersions on her integrity is, in her own word, "bullshit". Good for her.

Now it's time to vote. I don't know why they even bother.

Ryan O - Sandra. Cokecasta - Sandra. Hagrid - Sandra and after an aggrandizing speech about how she was there for him and now he hopes that his vote will count to her winning. Darrah - Sandra. Burtman - Sandra. Jon - Sandra. T&A - Lil, saying that she has no idea whether Sandra is here by luck or by strategy, but she knows at least that Lil used her head so T&A's vote goes to Lil.

Probby goes to tally the votes. Lil looks downcast but composed. Probby comes back and says that he knows they want to know the results now - Sandra nods and smiles - but the results will have to wait until the live show. He then takes the vote container and walks out of the Tribal Council, down to the beach, and wa-hey, straight to the live CBS Television City in Hollywood. He's now in a brown shirt with double gold vertical patterns on each side of the shirt. It's quite flattering in a circa 1974 way. Lil is in her scoutmistress uniform - although later she says that CBS forces her to wear it to the show - and she and Sandra look like they raided Dunkin Donuts on a nationwide spree the moment they got off the plane. Probby announces that the winner will receive an SUV Envoy as well as a million dollars. He reads the votes. Sandra. Lil. Sandra. Cheer from audience. Sandra. Sandra. Sandra. It is enough - Sandra is the new Survivor!

The others file in, and now it's time for the Reunion Show. I'm not touching that one. You want a brief summary? Alright: Darrah got the boob job she wanted from Daddy. Ryan O has found two-thirds of his mojo back while Burtman still looks horrible. Jon looks like... never mind, his disgusting and putrid appearance defies description. Watching the Reunion Show, I will have never thought that Sandra is the winner. It's all about Hagrid and Jon and the Feuhrer. Since these are the three most obnoxious people on the show, I am tempted to stab my eyes out with a rusty fork at many points during the show. Probby is so obviously besotted with the Feuhrer, which is the only reason why the loser can hog so much limelight, and Hagrid stands up and talks in that horrid self-aggrandizing way so much, it's overkill ten times over. I'll be seeing him again on All-Stars Survivor. I have the extra strong brandy ordered in advance.

My thoughts, for what they are worth, is that Sandra deserves to win over Lil. Survivor is a mental as well as physical challenge, but ultimately it's your people skills that count, and Sandra has all the advantages in the right places. Lil, like Queen Elfreda, came into the game way too late and by then, they have alienated so many people that they can never win no matter what. Lil did the best she could - the furthest she could go is second place, and she's one hundred grand richer. Jon can choke on that and die.

What sours my appreciation of Sandra's victory is the Jury's ripping Lil to shreds. T&A and Ryan O acquit themselves very well, but Hagrid, Cokecasta, and Jon really come off truly badly as malicious and spiteful bullies that tear apart Lil just because they cannot get it into their thick heads that they are as much fault as Lil in losing the game to Lil. Jon is already a despicable lowlife and Cokecasta is a quasi-Cro Magnon bimbo, so it is Hagrid, the so-called star of the show, that really makes me feel dirty after watching him go off on a middle-aged woman. He is colorful and he knows how to pander to the crowd, but he is also a mean-spirited bully with temper and control issues. Watching these three make me like a soiled and despicable voyeur, and that is where this season on the whole fails, as far as I'm concerned, to match up to Amazon or Pulau Tiga. Survivor Pearl Islands is a bloated, gimmick-laden season where the stars are monsters and the main entertainment is the brutal rape of the integrity and personality of a simple, overemotional middle-aged woman who does not belong on the show in the first place.

I need to take a long, long bath.

My Favorite Pages

This season at Amazon.com

This season at Amazon UK

Search for more rubbish:

My Guestbook Return to Idiot Box Chatter Email