Okay, before we start, some housekeeping. There are a lot of spoilers floating around for Survivor 44, and, unfortunately, I have seen some. And while I’m not 100% sure about their legitimacy, I feel it would affect my ability to properly analyze the edit, especially regarding contenders.
In addition, last season showed us that many traditional Edgic staples have been thrown out of the window. And with Jeff Probst and other producers making comments about how they edit episodically and not for winner edits, it’s sort of rendered the purpose of Edgic useless.
That said, Probst recently admitted to TV Insider that the show failed to make Mike Gabler’s win understandable to the audience and said they have taken on board that criticism. So that suggests Edgic isn’t completely dead in the water; the waters just might be a little choppier than usual.
So how will the Edit Bay look this season? Well, it’s going to be a much, much shorter analysis. However, I will still assign ratings to each player, so readers can track the chart throughout the season. And I will highlight a few potential story arcs and important alliances. But there will be no discussion of potential winner edits.
Eight players received confessionals in the intro, starting with Carolyn, who had her own stand-alone, unique confessional to begin the episode, with a producer telling us who she was.
This was followed by the more traditional boat confessionals, where we heard from Carson, Claire, Jaime, and Yam Yam.
Then we had three shorter confessionals from Josh, Frannie, and Bruce.
And during the first mat chat, Probst spoke to one player from each tribe, Yam Yam, Frannie, and Matthew.
So already, a lot of screen-time for Yam Yam and Frannie, and a very interesting intro for Carolyn, making her stand-out among her fellow castaways.
ALLIANCES & CONNECTIONS
Frannie & Matt (Pair) — We saw very little of the Soka tribe dynamics, but Frannie and Matt were highlighted as a pair with a potential romantic connection. Adding this to Frannie’s screen time during the intro, this will likely be an important pairing.
Carson, Helen, & Sarah (Alliance?) — The only real alliance content we saw in the premiere was from this Tika trio. It was brief, but we saw Carson, Helen, and Sarah agreeing to look out for each other. It’s hard to know how much stock to put in this group right now, though, given how little of the overall dynamics we’ve seen.
Brandon & Matthew (Pair?) — It initially appeared like Brandon and Matthew would be working together after they bonded in the Sweat task. But the Ratu tribe was such a mess that basically all alliances fell apart at tribal. However, Matthew did refer to Brandon as his closest ally at one point, and he didn’t vote for him. So perhaps this pair will reconvene in the coming episodes.
Odd One Out — I don’t think Carolyn having a separate intro to everyone else was merely coincidental. It immediately set her apart from the others. And that seemed to reflect her position at camp. She said she felt herself becoming the odd one out of the group, noting how the others were not including her in conversations.
A Nerdy Romance — As mentioned earlier, there was a lot of focus on Frannie and Matt’s early bond, with Frannie noting how they had similar, geeky personalities. And, based on the preview for the next episode, it appears the affection between the pair will continue to grow.
Lauren’s Lies — After Claire spilled the beans about the true nature of the Summit trip to Matthew, it put Lauren under the spotlight. Her tribe now knows that she lied to them. Given this situation was unresolved at Ratu’s first Tribal, I suspect this story to continue.
Don’t Underestimate — Heidi wasn’t a huge presence in the premiere, but she had a stand-out scene where she made fire and shared her backstory of being underestimated.
Jaime’s Paranoia — A big part of Ratu’s messiness was Jaime’s paranoia and her choosing to play her Shot in the Dark. Whether this was just first tribal nerves or a part of her story arc going forward, we do not yet know.
Matthew’s Mid-Life Adventure — The premiere gave us an immediate sense of Matthew’s passion for the experience. He wanted to soak up everything the game had to offer. This almost ended in tragedy after he slipped from a rock and wound up in a sling.
Many, Many Medical Visits — After four medical visits in one episode, including Bruce’s medevac, it appears Survivor 44 will live up to Probst’s hype about it being one of the most dangerous seasons ever.
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