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Survivor Gabon Finale: Yes, it's still on the air

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I watched the Survivor: Gabon Finale last night after an on-again, off-again relationship with the show this season. The show really suffers when they have a crop of unlikable people, especially when those people are winning everything and eliminating the people you like.

The Finale starts with the final five survivors:

  • Sugar, the blonde pin-up model who has played a spectacularly manipulative game while hiding behind a ditzy facade.
  • Mattie, the dude-bro. I kid you not, everything this guy says is a stereotype of a dude-bro.
  • Bob, the golden oldie. Bob's just a physics teacher back home, but with his bow-tie and worldly knowledge, he has gone on a stunning run of consecutive immunity challenge victories and is the favorite, but with a huge target on his back for elimination.
  • Kenny, the gamer. He started out quiet and in the shadows, but became a big political player as the game developed. He didn't zerg rush as some might have expected.
  • Susie, the, umm... lady. Susie is not interesting and only ever did one thing interesting, more on that later.

This episode begins fresh off the tribal council of the last one, where Kenny convinced Bob to give him his immunity necklace if he was in danger. Kenny then ran to the other tribe mates telling them Bob was giving him the necklace and it was time to get rid of him. Bad move, because Sugar ran to Bob and told him.

Tree mail arrives and it's some ceremonial cloths, paint, and beads for each of the five survivors. They decorate themselves. Bob gets the red colors and ends up looking like he has suffered multiple stab wounds and has eaten some paint.

Bob wins the immunity challenge that's comprised of some mazes and a puzzle at the end. Back at camp, Mattie goes to talk to Kenny, assuring him that they are voting Susie out. Nobody likes Susie, and Susie herself is amazed she is still there. That night at tribal council, the host, Jeff Probst riles up Kenny because he knows he's butthurt over Bob not giving him the idol so he could vote him out. Kenny states that he "feels safe" which is always the kiss of death at tribal council. Kenny is voted out, leaving Bob, Sugar, Mattie, and Susie.

The next day, after breakfast, another immunity challenge: build a house of cards using 200 planks of wood that reaches 10 feet high in 30 minutes or less. If nobody reached the 10' mark after 30 minutes, the highest house of cards wins.

The challenge begins and each competitor begins working on the base. After not too long, Suger has a huge lead, she's got a 7' tower going, but it is very skinny and collapses. Mattie and Susie are methodically building solid bases, each are about 4' high. Bob can't get his off the ground, the golden oldie is on the mat and going nowhere.

Sugar contructs another 7' high Space Needle and it is toppled by a light breeze. Susie has built a lead over Mattie and her tower stands about 6' high, with Mattie's at 5'. With two minutes remaining, Susie has her tower at approximately 8 feet, and it looks solid, but one wrong move can spoil her lead and she decides to nervously stand pat for the final two minutes as Sugar topples her third 7' Space Needle and Mattie tries to add on to his tower. It is not enough, and Susie finally does something impactful in the game, winning immunity over Bob.

Back at camp, Susie won't shut up about winning and everyone is upset because they need to vote Bob out to have a chance to win in the final jury vote. Bob heads off alone to practice starting fires in case there is a tie-breaking challenge. Sure enough, Sugar fails to eliminate Bob, votes for Mattie, forcing a tie. Bob wins easily and Mattie is eliminated.

Going into the final three, you know Bob wins. It's decided by a jury of the last seven tribe members to be eliminated. While Bob was involved in some controversy because he crafted a fake secret immunity idol (two actually), Sugar is actually more hated because she orchestrated the departure of almost every jury member. The lulziest by far was giving the fake secret immunity idol (crafted by Bob) to Randy. In a confessional, Randy informed the viewing public that he was, "not a dumbass for playing the fake idol," that it was in fact those who had made the fake idol and tricked him that were the dumbasses. And there's still Susie, I guess, but Susie is just lame.

It was at this point I stopped watching and went to check the Internet to verify. I hate when the jury asks the remaining survivors questions because it's always the stupidest, self-absorbed crap, usually concerning the circumstances of that jury member's elimination. Honestly, I don't care and you're lucky if I even remember who you are. You're yesterday.

Bob won with 4 votes over Susie's 3, and Sugar received no votes.


Bob, the winner.

Consider yourself lucky you didn't have to see him without a shirt on for 39 days.