Edit Bay this season is going to be a much shorter analysis due to spoilers. 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.
Survivor 44 continues to place the majority of its focus on advantages and twists, with significant screen time spent on explaining the rules of new powers. This episode, in particular, felt the weight of that, especially with two challenges eating into the rest of the running time.
Sifting through all that, this episode centered on two similar stories, one from Carolyn and one from Josh. Both stories revolved around being the odd one out, which has been a consistent theme of Carolyn’s edit from the start. But both players had different perspectives on their positions despite coming together, in the end, to pull off a blindside.
Carolyn is someone who is aware of her position in her tribe. Despite working with Yam Yam recently, she still recognized where she stands on the totem pole. She did not appreciate being the decoy vote as she understood what that meant. “They don’t do a great job of making me feel like I’m in with them,” she said. “So why would I have any loyalty to them is how I feel right now.”
Compare that to Josh, who was also on the outs on Soka and yet wasn’t aware of his position. He started the episode by saying, “I’m in the perfect position where I’m in the middle between two different, opposing alliances that both trust me, and that makes me feel good.” But as we saw, the rest of his tribe immediately undermined him, with Heidi telling us that Josh was the next target.
It was fitting then that the unaware Josh ended up coming out on top in this episode due to the aware Carolyn clueing him in on which way the vote was going. So there was a cool little story arc across this episode hidden behind all the other nonsense.
As for the rest, the dynamics are still kind of threadbare. We saw Jaime join Soka and basically assume Josh’s position as the easy next vote. And on Ratu, Matthew extended an olive branch to Carson, sharing info to bring him on his side. But we don’t have a real sense of who the target would be on Ratu should they attend tribal any time soon.
ALLIANCES & CONNECTIONS
Frannie & Matt (Pair) — Not as much focus on the potential showmance this week, but they were still named as a pair in the opening Soka scene.
Danny & Heidi (Pair) — Also clocked as a pair in the opening scene, Danny & Heidi also appear to be in a foursome with Frannie & Matt.
Carolyn, Carson, & Yam Yam (Alliance?) — This trio is now split up, but there is still a focus on their relationship. But it’s not as simple as a tight three wanting to ride things out. There is a lot of distrust between this trio. Obviously, we saw Carolyn and Yam Yam clash over the decoy vote situation, with Carolyn ultimately voting against Yam Yam’s wishes. And Carson was happy to throw Yam Yam under the bus to his new tribe, painting him as the one in charge.
Carson & Matthew (Pair?) — Matthew revealed the info about Jaime’s idol (the fake one) to Carson, hoping to forge a bond. Given that this was the only real scene we saw of Carson on Ratu, it would suggest this pairing is important to some degree. Although, it should be noted we didn’t hear Carson’s thoughts on Matthew.
Carolyn & Josh (Pair?) — Could these two become a powerful pair in the game? Hmm, perhaps. But the episode painted it more as an alliance of necessity, at least on Josh’s part. And for Carolyn, it seemed more about asserting herself.
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