Welcome to Season 44’s Next Time On Survivor weekly feature on the Inside Survivor site! If you’re new around here, this is a tiny space where I give my best attempts at understanding preview trailers and make my predictions for the next episodes of the show. Let’s jump right in!
From the Ratu tribe, we get a soundbite from Matthew declaring, “I never intended to play an honest game.” Indeed, he’s already shown to be willing to lie and manipulate what he shares for his benefit. He’s definitely a strategic player who’s well-versed in the game, as evidenced when he deliberately played his shot in the dark to avoid voting and thus prevented his alliances from being known in the first vote.
If Ratu goes to tribal this week, I think it’ll centre on Matthew being a swing vote deciding who he wants to align with. He may be tempted to work with Lauren, who holds some power with an extra vote. My prediction is that Kane will be the next to go on Ratu, as he’s the easiest target at this point, being the only player left on the tribe that voted incorrectly. His vote for Brandon in the first episode will probably return to bite him, as it doesn’t seem like Brandon is going to forget about it.
After Episode 2’s tribal council, we’re left with a small group of four players on Tika. From the episode, it seemed that the tribe was divided, with Carolyn and Yam Yam on one side and Helen and Sarah on the other. As the swing vote, Carson had ultimately decided to vote with the former pair to blindside Helen. While it seems like a 3-1 now, we’re not actually sure where Sarah stands because she didn’t vote during tribal council.
I think that Sarah’s the next to go on Tika, despite her Inheritance Advantage, as the other three seem tight and have had the Helen vote to solidify their alliance. Yam Yam and Carolyn, in particular, look like a strong alliance with their wacky, offbeat personalities, as seen by that dramatic second in the NTOS trailer where Yam Yam expressively falls on the beach. I won’t be surprised if the three follow through and take Sarah out next.
On Soka, we have Claire remarking, “Those two, they’re a huge liability,” likely referring to Frannie and Matt’s budding showmance. In Episode 2, Claire showed her disapproval of the two coupling up with some memorable eye rolls and judging side glances. However, as with my prediction last week, I feel that other players may still want to work with Matt and Frannie as it secures numbers on a small tribe. I think the two, or at least Frannie for now, are shrewd and sharp enough to navigate around the pitfalls of being seen as a couple.
Instead, the target may turn on Claire. She hasn’t been participating in challenges and thus may seem like a deadweight and easy vote. There’s just something about her sitting out being highlighted that suggests to me it’ll play a factor in some decision down the line.
Also, on Soka, we have Danny crawling and forward rolling through the jungle and ultimately shoving a piece of parchment into his mouth. In Episode 2, we saw him find the key to the cage, where he celebrated by flossing. We also saw him retrieve the bag but returned it seemingly undetected by Claire and Matt, who checked on the cage after.
Here, I feel that the full picture hasn’t been revealed to us yet. I predict we’ll see a flashback sequence where Danny puts the fake idol back in the bag in the cage and keeps the real idol. Then, he’ll try to get rid of the information that tells of the fake idol (hopefully he doesn’t actually consume the parchment) so that he can trick someone into believing the planted fake is real.
We’re off to a fun start! The real/fake idols are going to cause some chaos in the coming episodes, and I’m looking forward!