Edgic is a weekly feature analyzing each player’s edit, mapping characters to their story-arc. Note that our focus is not solely to determine the winner, as is typical of other Edgic sites. For more information on how Edgic works and rating definitions read our Introduction to Edgic article.
You can read previous weeks Edgic posts here.
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What Does This Episode Tell Us?
There is a lot of trial and error in the early weeks of Edgic. A big part of the fun with analyzing the edit is trying to work out the characters and their stories and watching how things slowly start to come together (or fall apart in some cases). Episode 1 did some great setting up. However, Episode 2 turned a lot of that on its head. Characters that looked to be heading in one direction took a massive turn and others that seemed out of it suddenly re-emerged.
Once again, the lack of Complex Personality ratings is startling. There was only 4 in the premiere, and there was even less this week. What this tells us is that we have a very character heavy season on our hands and not one with a lot of strategy focus. If you look closely in this episode, the only real strategy focused content came from Brawn tribe post-challenge, Tai in regards to his idol and placing within the group and Peter with his relationship with Debbie.
Characters like Anna and Jason who seemed sure to be big winner contenders after Episode 1 took a big dip and needed some serious re-evaluating in this week’s ratings break down.
The content of the Previously On Survivor recap can be a great indicator in regards to the season’s main themes and stories. Not only that but it can often tell us which characters we should be paying particular attention to. Obviously, a lot of the recap is just set up for the episode to come but there is a subtext that can prove very useful.
In this week’s recap, Jeff Probst re-introduced the three tribes. Debbie and Liz confessionals represented the Brains tribe. It reminded us that Debbie was annoying her fellow tribe mates. Anna and Tai confessionals represented the Beauty tribe. It told us that the women were together and wanted to use Tai, but his idol search had caused distrust. The Brawn tribe was represented by a Jason confessional. It reminded us that Alecia was the odd one out.
It is likely that the five that received recap confessionals will be significant or important characters this season. Some might be long-term and some short-term.
Alecia also received a lot of content in the recap. Probst referred to her as a mess in the first challenge. But he later gave her credit for surviving the vote: “Alecia fought to stay in the game.” Followed by an Alecia quote, “I will work my butt off in challenges, and I will step up.” This quote set up the events to come in this episode but also perhaps hinted at a long-running arc for Alecia.
Probst also reaffirmed the two main themes of the season. He reminded us of “the harsh conditions”; represented by Aubry, Jason, and Jennifer. Lots of focus on the heat and the sun. The recap also included Probst’s closing words from last week’s tribal council: “There was a theme to tonight’s tribal council. If you’re going to talk the talk, you better be able to walk the walk.”
Survivor: Kaôh Rōng is going to be about the brutal conditions and people backing up their words.
When we talk about Episode 2 turning things on their head, Anna is a huge part of that. She had such an active and visible premiere that it was surprising to see her completely disappear in the second episode. Some people might argue that her inclusion in the recap lifts her to an UTR1. But while the recaps can be excellent indicators of future stories, when it comes to Edgic ratings we are judging the content of the episode itself. Anna had zero confessionals and maybe one line in the entire episode.
The Beauty tribe is living the high life at the minute. They’re winning challenges, having fun, and don’t seem to be as affected by the elements. That means we haven’t had much strategic focus from them, and therefore it explains Anna’s quieter edit this episode. But even so, if Anna were a big contender then you’d expect her to at least get to comment on something. Julia and Michele both got to comment on the Tai and Caleb dynamic. Anna was background furniture.
It would be unwise to rule Anna out of winner contention or a long-term story arc, though. She did have a such a strong first episode, and they included her in this week’s recap. But it’s hard to spin an INV edit into a positive. Only two previous winners have had an INV second episode: Amber Mariano and Natalie White. However, neither of them dropped from such an impressive Episode 1 rating. In fact, out of thirty-one winners, only four have ever had an INV rating (Tina, Amber, Natalie W, and Fabio). Anna’s third episode edit is going to be critical.
Unlike with Anna, it’s harder to find excuses for Nick’s edit. He didn’t have a particularly strong premiere, and things got even worse for him this week. His INV edit is even more shocking given his archetype: tall, athletic, white male. If he was significant in any way, then it’s guaranteed the editors would be showing him.
The one thing that sticks out still is his “39 days and a million bucks in my pocket” line from his intro confessional in the premiere. That is the one thing keeping his chances alive at the minute. Right now he has a similar to edit to Ciera and Kimmi at the start of Survivor: Cambodia. Ciera and Kimmi also had pretty strong intro confessionals but rather inconsequential premieres as a whole. They both then slipped to an UTR1 (almost INV) in Episode 2 and continued that way for a while. The difference is, at the merge Ciera arose as a CP character while Kimmi continued to be mostly UTR and MOR.
Is Nick the Ciera or Kimmi of Kaôh Rōng? The positive to take from this is that Nick is unlikely to be an early boot. Someone of his archetype would be getting much more focus if he was booted at the beginning of the game. His edit is more in line with the “deep run girl” edit that Survivor knows all too well. The question is whether he steps up at the merge or continues to play in the background.
Aubry is another character that had a relatively strong premiere but slipped massively in Episode 2. Last week she received a mini-redemption arc, coupled with some subtle scenes that suggested she could be a strong contender and a potential long-term character. Other than a small part in the recap, Aubry had almost nothing in this episode.
The one thing to point out was a scene where Aubry was shown walking with Debbie to the water well. They were both laughing about chemicals in the water and Liz’s reaction to said water. It demonstrated that Aubry and Debbie get along; this continued from last week when we saw Debbie comforting Aubry. Debbie also name-checked Aubry during her cheerleading at the challenge: “Go, Aubry!” The only other person she cheered by name was Peter, at the end of the challenge when he was on the catapult.
Is the edit subtly showing us that Aubry gets along with the older people and actively keeping her out of scenes and discussions with the young folk? This episode didn’t bring up the young person’s alliance, but it did highlight the split between Debbie/Joe and Liz/Neal. Peter also was shown making fun of Debbie. We haven’t heard Aubry’s opinions on her tribemates, and that is either intentional because she will soon have to choose sides or it’s just because Aubry isn’t that interesting in a tribe of big personalities.
Under the Radar
There isn’t a whole lot to say about Julia after this episode. She got a decent confessional in the premiere that revealed a bit about herself and her approach to alliances. This week she was kept present with a fairly mundane but socially aware confessional about Caleb and Tai and their dynamic.
It doesn’t provide enough to give a full read on Julia’s long-term story arc. The fact that she got to comment on something though is a positive. It was also a very informed comment, it wasn’t undermined or off-base, unlike say a Monica confessional in Cambodia. If we’re looking at Julia going deep in the game, then you could call this the “Wentworth effect.” The editors always made sure to give Kelley Wentworth at least one confessional in every single episode last season because she was an end-game player that played a big part in the story post-merge. Julia is getting content, even if relatively basic, and that is a good sign. The editors want us to know she is there.
If she gets another confessional next week without Beauty going to tribal council, then it would be a safe bet that Julia will last a while.
Michele had a very similar edit to Julia this week, although her confessional about Caleb and Tai was split into two and almost acted as a commentary on the scene going on at camp. Michele also had a relatively strong premiere, but unlike Anna, she didn’t completely disappear in Episode 2. The editors kept her present and provided us with her thoughts on the Caleb and Tai relationship.
Again, it is the “Wentworth effect”. We were given a confessional from Michele even though she wasn’t directly involved in the scene. It stood out even more because Julia had already had a confessional on the same subject so the Michele one might have seemed unnecessary. But again, the editors put it in there for a reason. Just like last week when she got to comment on Tai’s idol search even after we’d already heard from Anna. There isn’t enough content yet to make a great declaration on Michele’s winner chances, but everything points to her sticking around in this game for a long while.
Right now Michele is acting as the narrator of the Beauty camp, almost presiding over the things going on. She didn’t disappear like Anna, and she has a touch more complexity overall than Julia. Everything looks good for this Beauty.
Middle of the Road
Cydney just barely escaped an UTR rating this week and for a tribe that attended tribal council, it certainly doesn’t look great. She received her MOR rating for explaining her decision to flip on Jennifer at tribal council: “That’s where loyalty comes in. Since there’s no place to hide, you have to know who’s loyal.”
The one positive here is that the edit shielded Cydney from the majority of the Brawn craziness. They didn’t show her bad-mouthing Alecia like Jason and Scot, and she wasn’t shown being lazy. That could be the editors intentionally protecting her, especially if she separates from the Brawn tribe down the line, or like with Aubry, it could just be that there wasn’t anything particularly interesting of Cydney to show this episode.
Right now her edit is very steady but a little too low impact. Next week will be very telling for her longevity and character potential.
Peter had the same rating as the premiere but overall this was a much more positive episode for him. He wasn’t shown to be quite so arrogant, and there was a decent social game starting to develop.
There was a particular focus on his relationship with Debbie. Even though in confessionals and behind her back he was making fun of her, face-to-face they were shown to get along. “Don’t you agree?” Debbie asked him at one point showing that she respects his opinion. Peter complimented her when he told her “…, and you apparently have amazing hand-eye coordination.” Peter was allowed to elaborate on his relationship with Debbie in a confessional when he talked about wanting to drag Debbie as far as he can because she is “a brain with no game.” It wasn’t quite complex enough to warrant a CP rating, but we got to hear him talk game unlike anyone else on the Brains tribe.
In terms of going forward, Peter’s chances have improved, but it’s hard to shake the arrogance on display in the premiere. His mention of not being able to deal with ignorant people sounded like foreshadowing. It’s still difficult to see him as a potential winner but after Episode 2 he could indeed become a strategic force later in the game.
Neal was one of the very few CP edits in the premiere and his drop to MOR this week is perfectly in line with either a winner or late-game player. It wasn’t a huge drop off like Anna nor did it become OTT cartoonish.
The biggest take away from this episode regarding Neal is that we can trust what he says. While his “old people” bashing last week seemed a little negative, his comments this week were constantly backed up by the edit. We got another peculiar Neal subtitle about kerosene melting rubber; this harkens back to the premiere with his subtitled “noise carries well over water”. What does this tell us? It says that Neal is smart and knows what he’s talking about. In addition to being smart with his random factoids, he was also the one who started the fire. He was shown doing Debbie’s bidding before trying to start the fire. We get the impression that he’s a hard worker and has survival skills – also looked like the leader in the challenge.
Because of the smart-sounding, subtitled, and true quote about kerosene eating away at rubber immediately beforehand and because at the start of the confessional he correctly stated that Joe poured a lot of kerosene to start their first fire (which we, the viewers, saw), we know we can believe what Neal says. So when he said: “What’s gonna happen, if we don’t have our fire, is we’re gonna drink from the well and people could get sick.” We can take that as valid information. The two individuals identified as drinking directly from the well were Joe and Debbie. That is now the second time it’s alluded to that Joe could get medevaced. It seemed like picking on the old before but now the edit is backing it up.
It was a quieter episode for Neal but one that portrayed him as sharp and smart.
Joe is another player whose stock dramatically dropped in Episode 2. Last week he seemed like the old man with experience that was being undermined by the younger folk. This week he seemed like the grumpy curmudgeon that wasn’t able to back up his claims (theme alert!).
He was shown pouring lots of kerosene on the fire early in the episode and then later asked: “Where the hell did it go?” Neal then had to explain that kerosene eats away at rubber. But we knew from Neal and Liz confessionals that it was Joe that wasted the majority of the kerosene. He then continued to fail with the fire when he couldn’t light the matches: “These are wet. These guys are shot.” Is Joe wet and shot in this game? Neal certainly gave that impression as he sat smirking in the background.
Joe later gave a confessional where he talked about his own survival skills. But we couldn’t take his word at face value because he discredited himself by saying, “the two most practical people are Debbie and me.” We know that Debbie is “all talk not backed up with anything,” as Liz specifically said. So when he said, “I have a lot of survival skills having a military background, and the rest of the people, I think they have book knowledge, but it– it’s not the same thing…” we can’t take this seriously. So we now question Joe’s survival skills, which was backed up by Liz and Neal saying he wasted kerosene and destroyed matches, and also we know others on this tribe have more than just book knowledge because Neal started the fire.
He had negative tone because of the wasted kerosene and destroyed matches (as said by Liz and Neal). He also snapped at Liz when she offered the seemingly reasonable suggestion of dropping smoking embers into the kindling. There was also plenty of shots of him looking angry and grumpy. It was a very quick turn for his edit and took away some of the sympathies his edit may have garnered in the premiere.
Liz’s edit continued where it left off last week but perhaps a little more rounded this time. She had a mixture of positive and negative SPV (Second Person Visibility) and a sympathetic scene that provided a bit more insight into Liz as a character.
There is still a lot of contradictions in Liz’s edit. She started this week by stating: “We’ve (the Brains tribe) been feeling cohesive and tight, and this victory, I think, really has solidified us even better.” But the episode did everything it could to show us that the Brains weren’t solidified. There is still a divide between the old and young; there was friction over the fire and kerosene, debates over the water, and Liz herself clashed with Joe which caused her to have a mini-break down. The things she criticized others for last week were now happening to her. Liz said Debbie talked too much and annoyed people, but this week her talking annoyed Joe. She questioned whether Aubry would crack again but this week it was Liz that cracked over the water situation.
She did have positive SPV regarding Debbie referring to her as a “smart girl,” and the sympathetic music that accompanied her sad confessional about Joe not taking her seriously was all positive tone. But she also had negative SPV from Joe: “Pain in the butt.” and “Knows everything about everything.” There was also a goofy montage of her making various survival tools, like a measuring rod, ash for ant attacks and a water filter. The edit played it almost mockingly.
The crying and dispute with Joe helped develop Liz into a more rounded personality, but there was still a keen focus on hypocrisy within her edit. It’s also interesting that this episode had two tribes with a significant focus on fire. On Brawn, Alecia started the fire and was able to survive the vote – fire represents life. On Brains, Liz took herself away from the game due to the lack of fire: “I really need a fire going…” and “I just need to hide myself for a little bit until the fire is going.” It’s another one of those ominous signs that seem to be ever-present in Liz’s edit.
Scot’s edit is on a downward trajectory. He is still a very present character, but his edit is becoming more negative and contradictory which often spells doom.
The edit made it clear last week that all Scot cares about is strength. His intro confessional in the premiere was, “People I’m gonna get along with are guys that are strong, and if you show weakness, bye-bye!” as the camera panned to Alecia. In fact, he called Alecia weak from the get go and never gave her a chance. “Not one thing has gone right, and we’re sitting here laughing our asses off,” he said while lazing in the shelter;. juxtaposed with Alecia toiling in the burning sun, in spite of his derision and laziness, and she succeeded in starting the fire.
Later in the episode, when Scot woke up, he was excited. He had a confessional in which he said: “Now we have food and clean water, and I just feel like we’re just gonna get stronger and stronger.” The person he wrote off as weak based entirely on appearances was the only one on Brawn that provided him the things he needed to get “stronger and stronger.” It’s crucial because the subtext of this confessional is saying that Alecia is stronger than Scot. Without her (and the fire), he would have continued to weaken. It completely undermines his entire first episode and the way he has been approaching the game.
If it was that alone, then it might not be quite so monumental, but the edit continued to undermine him throughout the episode. “I would be shocked if one of us turned,” he said. Then someone (Jennifer) turned. Then again, he told Jason “There’s no breaking up our 4.” When Jason asked “You sure?” he replied “Yes, 100%” He was wrong, Jennifer had turned, and then turned back, and at tribal council one of their four ended up leaving. His theme is developing into wrong wrong wrong. He did have some positive SPV from Jennifer though who said she liked and trusted him.
Perhaps most telling is at tribal council when he said: “I do think in the long run Jenny would be better for us, physically, mentally.” But Jennifer went home. So does this mean Scot’s long term game is now compromised?
Over the Top
Not a lot of change in Caleb’s edit this episode. He continued to be portrayed as the very positive, good-humoured, likable tribe member. There was nothing particularly complex on display and nothing about his long-term (or even short-term) strategy.
He had lots of positive SPV. “Very cute,” “cuddlelicious,” “childlike,” “appetite of a child,” “sexy guy,” “country boy.” Lots of “boy” and “child.” He is the big kid of the Beauty tribe. He’s coming across as kind hearted and good natured. He let Tai cuddle with him for warmth in the middle of the night. He talked about how “…there is no such thing as homophobe in this guy right here.” He even said to Tai after the stolen kiss, “Next time just ask,” meaning you just have to ask Caleb and he’ll protect and serve and be straightforward. He is a team player.
The focus on the Caleb and Tai relationship could also suggest a further game-related bond. The “Next time just ask” could potentially lead to Tai asking Caleb to help him with retrieving the key for the idol box. Either way, this episode further solidified Caleb as someone the audience is meant to like and root for. We should be invested in his story this season.
Much like Caleb, there wasn’t a lot of change in Debbie’s edit this week. She continued to be presented as a joke; a walking, talking punchline. She was literally juggling in this episode, like a clown, and cheering obnoxiously at the challenge with makeshift pom-poms. We are not meant to take her seriously.
The visual content, the music, the comments from other characters. Everything is set up to undermine Debbie. There was suspicious music playing over her confessional about the water: “The chances of there being organic chemicals here that we have to boil and filter the water, are virtually slim to none.” Even though for 31 seasons, it has been repeated time and again that contestants should boil their water before drinking it. Debbie was instantly undermined. She continued, “It is absolutely in my realm of experience to be able to judge water just by looking at it.” There was literally a “boom-tish!” cymbal sound turning her entire confessional into a joke.
She had tons of negative SPV once again. “Marches to the beat of her own drum.” Peter’s confessional about the amount of cats she owns. Peter and Liz mocking the amount of jobs she supposedly has. Liz said, “…all talk not backed up with anything isn’t going to get her anywhere.” That is one of the key themes of the season so far. In terms of strategy, Peter said that Debbie is “not exhibiting much gameplay whatsoever.”
The thing is, it wouldn’t be unprecedented for an early OTTN character to go far in this game. Coach and Phillip are perfect examples and Debbie could certainly fit into that bracket. There are certain lines that could be read into that may hint at her longevity. “Just because I have the immune system of a horse doesn’t mean you do..” she said at one point. Is that an allusion to her being immune for longer than she should be? She also said this to Liz. Is she more immune than Liz? Peter said specifically that he wanted to drag Debbie further.
Other than Anna, Jason was the character that took the biggest tumble after such a strong premiere edit. In the first episode, he was presented as a complex character that was a little rough around the edges but who had a good heart underneath. There was debate whether he was getting the Tony Vlachos edit or the Russell Hantz edit. Tony being the big character whose villainous ways came about because of his gameplay. Russell being the big character whose villainous ways came about because of his bad attitude as well as his strategy. After this week, Jason is heading into Hantzian territory.
His second episode edit started okay. He was shown to be “embracing the suck” of his sunburn. “Chalking it up to another horrible day. Let’s move on!” He didn’t complain about his injuries and got to explain why he was staying in the shelter (for shade). This provided him with some air cover for the Alecia fire storyline… but not much. After this point forward the editors moved Jason into straight up OTT villain edit.
He was shown snoring and sleeping while Alecia kept working on the fire. The edit even included an “Elapsed time: 5 hours” caption to show how long Alecia had been toiling away while the “hitman” was “having naptime.” Even though his attitude toward his injuries was positive, he was shown to have a very negative outlook of the tribe. He was already talking about “Worst tribe in history” after just two losses. The opposite of “we tried” Alecia. “Our ship is sinking.” Is Jason a sinking ship and taking others down with him?
Jason received lots of negative tone. He was shown sleeping, burping, and even throwing his dead skin into the pot. “Did you just throw your skin in the pot?” “Well, we’ll feed it to blondie.” That right there should be the death knell for Jason’s winner chances. A big character? Certainly. A big time villain? Likely. A deep game player? Possibly. But a winner? It would be unprecedented for a winner to be portrayed that negatively.
Jennifer stated: “Jason is starting to piss me off. I don’t like his attitude. I mean, he just sits around and doesn’t do anything except talk about Alecia.” This was backed up by the content shown in the edit. Every time Jason and Scot said something disparaging about Alecia, that she’s useless and weak and has to go, she defied them. Even though Jason came into help with the fire towards the end, the edit presented the fire as Alecia’s accomplishment, not his – if anything it made it seem like he was sneaking in to claim the credit. We then later saw a subtitled line from Jason regarding Alecia and the idol: “She’ll never find it.” Is this foreshadowing that she’ll defy him again?
He was given credit for being suspicious of Jennifer potentially flipping. That shows an element of game sense which is a positive for his longevity. “The point of alliances is that you’re going some place together and you never waver on each other,” is what he said at tribal council. That seems to be Jason’s story-arc. He won’t waver, he won’t bend, he won’t compromise. He is going to bulldoze his way through the game the way he wants to.
Jennifer is a great example of Edgic trial and error. Last week her “39 days no problem” remark seemed like a Kimmi style quote that would take her to the end of the game. Obviously, we can see now that that quote was used for irony. One of the main themes this season is the brutality of the location and Jennifer saying 39 days would be no problem was undermining that.
It was very hard to decide between CP or OTT. Her meltdown at tribal council was certainly OTT but there was enough complexity in the main portion of the episode to give her a CP rating. She got to talk about her alliances – “Jason, Scot and I” – that was the power trio at the start of the episode. She got to give her reasoning for potentially flipping and forming a girls alliance and also her reasons for flipping back. Yes, it was very scatter brained and came off negatively tone wise, but there was complexity there.
Jennifer had a fair amount of negative tone. She was shown laughing with Scot about everything going wrong and doing nothing while Alecia was working. Cydney said that she was “all over the place.” Her theme soon changed from the tough woman to “I chase shiny objects” – a wishy-washy player that couldn’t commit. Cydney summed up Jenny’s game perfectly: “It’s about being in the wrong place at the wrong time and saying the wrong things at the wrong time to the wrong people.”
Perhaps the biggest take away from Jennifer’s edit was her conversation with Alecia back at the Brawn beach. “What’s the best thing you can do in this game?” Jennifer asked. “Be honest” Alecia replied. Jennifer said no, “Getting out the strongest players now while you still can.” It was these two competing values that went head to head at tribal council, and Alecia won out. Jennifer got herself into all sorts of trouble by lying and falsely accusing Alecia of telling everyone else lies. Meanwhile, Alecia remained calm and simply stated “I’m telling the truth”, and we the audience knew that she was. In this moment honesty really was the most important thing in the game.
Despite her CP rating in this episode, Jennifer’s overall season rating is OTTM. The things people will remember about Jennifer after the season is over is the bug in the ear (which she dealt with in a positive way) and the standing on the stool at tribal council (which was negatively toned).
If Anna and Jason had the biggest falls Edgically speaking, then Alecia had the biggest rise. She went from the OTTN character that everyone thought should have been booted first to a rootable underdog that could perhaps last a long time in this game.
Again, like with Jennifer, there is an argument that Alecia’s edit could have been OTT. The episode started with the recap calling her a “mess” and unable to keep up with the heavy lifting. There was goofy clown music over her first confessional: “I’m just really confused at this point.” And her “embryo” line was subtitled. However, despite any negative SPV and other mockery, she got to explain herself and her actions and what she is doing to change her position in the game. Those are all classic elements of a Complex Personality. In fact, Alecia had one of the most obvious CP strategy discussions of the season so far. In her girl’s alliance talk with Jennifer she said:
“Yeah, you guys can do it easy and vote me out…but we can vote out one of the guys, us girls will stay strong, we’ll make the merge. When we make the merge they go after guys like them and then you’re not gonna have an alliance. So if you go with us to the merge we have a much better chance of not getting picked off.”
That is the definition of CP. It was well explained, long-term strategy. For all the stupid music and “confused” content and ditz SPV she received, Alecia was actually shown to have a firm grasp on the strategy.
Alecia’s edit quickly became the story of the girl that never gives up. “I’m at the bottom but I don’t believe in quitting.” This was best exemplified with her determination to start the fire. The elapsed time caption wasn’t meant to mock Alecia, it was to highlight how hard she was working while everyone else had “naptime” in the shelter. Suddenly the positive SPV started: “good girl”, “she’s not a quitter, she’s tough”, “saved us.” Everyone got to eat chicken because of her efforts and the tribe was shown as happy and getting stronger.
Her never give up attitude continued post-challenge. In fact, immediately after they lost the challenge she was subtitled saying “We tried.” She is the poster girl for don’t quit. “She’s still out searching,” Scot said, indicating that she wasn’t giving up easily on the idol search either. “Every day she blows my mind a little bit more,” Jason said. That was meant to be negative coming from Jason, but at that point in the episode, her positive can-do attitude and success with the fire had the audience on her side. She is actually blowing the audience’s minds every day a little bit more by continuing to survive, by starting fire, etc.
Last week Alecia seemed like early pre-merge boot fodder. Now she seems like she could be a season long-underdog. Could she win? That would take some Fabio level editing. But don’t ever give up on Alecia making it deep into this game.
Tai continued to have the most visible edit in Episode 2 and this time, he got some complexity to go with it. The OTTP edit last week suggested Tai would be an audience fan favorite character and that remains the same this week with the CPP edit. But it also means that Tai could now be a potential winner candidate or at least a big player.
The recap reminded us that he was the “odd man out.” Tai was very aware of that at the start of this episode, explaining that he didn’t know his standing with the tribe and therefore wanted the idol but didn’t want to put a target on his back. He gave a full, complex description of the situation. He received heroic music when he found the idol clue. In his idol search, the edit focused on his bleeding feet, his chest, and thighs which were rubbed raw – we even saw him hitting his head against the tree. Tai is giving his blood and sweat for this game. It shows that this Beauty is willing to get ugly to get the job done. A very Brawn like attitude. Tai is walking the walk.
His complexity shot up even further just before his funny scene with Caleb. “I think I’m going to lay low because, I think, maybe my charm, my personality, will help me connect with the people in my tribe.” If it wasn’t for that confessional leading into the Caleb scene then it could have simply been played for laughs. However, what this showed is that there was a strategic benefit to Tai’s whole stolen kiss scene. He charmed Caleb and everyone on his tribe; he had them all laughing. He did exactly what he said he was going to do – he used his charm and personality to connect.
The bond with Caleb is bound to pay off in some way. Whether it is in a long-term alliance or something short-term – like Caleb helping Tai retrieve the idol – remains to be seen. What we do know is that Tai is a positive character that is not only socially aware but is willing to get his hands dirty to play this game.
That is it for Survivor: Kaôh Rōng Edgic for Episode 2. Let us know your thoughts and/or anything interesting that we missed in the comments below.