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Sardonic

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  1. Sardonic

    Ethan & Jenna

    Okay, I will play devil's advocate here. I actually like Jenna now. Back in 2003, when she was on Survivor: Amazon, I could not STAND her (and was more than a little pissed that Rob did not win this season, as he is by FAR the Survivor contestant that I most identified with, even eight years later.) I do feel, though, that despite the fact that she came across as a vapid Mean Girl during her original season, that she's grown up since then. Every appearance I've seen her in the past few years she's come across as a mature, witty person. I will further play devil's advocate and say that I wasn't that impressed with Ethan. He coasted on charm the entire way, rode Lex's coattails, and managed to be in alliance with three people who were fighting over who got to lose to him. The second time around on All-Stars, when Rob was gunning for him because Ethan had hooked up with, and cheated on, Amber and Lex turned on him out of paranoia and Ethan was making cheap shots at Other Jenna (the person with whom he'd cheated on Amber with?) Much more interesting to watch him scramble. Bringing this back to TAR... it seems like they'd be a good fit. They're both smart and competitive, and they're one of the CBS Golden Couples. I would think they could do well (or at least as well as Jeff and Jordan). The only thing that scares me: if ALL couples that are prominently featured on CBS reality shows end up on TAR... especially couples that contain one or two winners of Big Brother or Survivor... having Brendon and Rachel being on a season of TAR in the near future seems a near inevitability, and although I've developed a begrudging respect for her this season, I do NOT look forward to hearing her yell "NOBODY U-turns MY MAN" and I still can't stand Brendon.
  2. My perception of Shelly's vote was that Rachel had fought throughout the game, whereas Porsche coasted under the radar until after the double eviction night and then came out swinging. I found it interesting because Shelly also flew under the radar until the halfway point. Ultimately, though, I do think Shelly is someone that actually would have based her vote on strategic play over everything else.
  3. In conclusion, that was a weird but not unsatisfying end to a season... not the outcome I'd have predicted or chosen but I'm okay with it. Rachel played the hell out of the game and did a much better job of not making things as personal as she did the last time. Although I can't say that I actually am a fan of Rachel's (because I still find her kind of grating and find her taste in men to be questionable) I found myself with a grudging respect for her this season. I absolutely feel like she ended the game strong, and earned her votes against an opponent that had many friends on the jury. And compared to watching Mike Boogie and Maggie win, watching Rachel win was a pleasure.
  4. Sardonic

    Jeff

    I think that the thing was that this was perceived as being Jeff's season to win. I believe Jeff and Jordan themselves perceived it this way. Now, the thing was, that even with this season's stunningly passive newbies, anyone with any sense would know that facing Jeff in the final two was a ticket to lose (or would lead to a Jeff and Jordan final two where I think she'd have just rolled over and let him win.) By the same token, though, taking out Jeff was essentially a suicide mission. Daniele and Shelly both understood that it needed to happen, but both of them jumped the gun and paid for it by being evicted the following week. I think Jeff would have taken it personally being nominated and evicted by anyone except for Kalia and possibly Porsche. I think where he lost his grip a bit was where he forgot that (Jordan notwithstanding) everyone was playing for themselves, and I truly believe that he'd have been able to beat any opponent he faced in the final.
  5. I mean, I guess he could have beaten Porsche, provided that Porsche won the final HOH and took him and the two veteran couples rewarded him for being loyal/ felt he was less of a non-entity. I think had he taken Porsche, he might well have lost Rachel and Brendon's votes. The funny thing is that had he won the final HOH, I bet he'd have taken Rachel, thinking he had the votes of everyone but Brendon, instead of Porsche, and it would have backfired because he wouldn't have had Jeff's, Jordan's, or Shelly's votes like he'd have assumed (and I'm not fully convinced he'd have had Porsche's.)
  6. Rachel winning: perversely awesome. I would not have predicted a Rachel win at the beginning of the season; in fact, I think that even a few weeks ago I said she'd have to face Shelly to even have a shot. Although she still annoys me, it was well-deserved and she turned on the afterburners with her endgame. I think that it came down to the fact that Porsche laid low for too long for any of the swing votes to take her seriously. I don't actually think she was a BAD player, but I think she played too passively and under the radar for too long. Had Adam made the final two, I feel he wouldn't really have won any votes on his own merits so much as he would have gotten votes for people voting against his opponent. I think Adam's plan for final two vote was to punish whomever didn't take him to the end. Rachel I think would have won either way, and Porsche would have lost either way. The jury: Shelly seemed pretty gracious. Daniele seemed sour (and complaining that Rachel was too vicious toward people does not show much self-awareness or any recollection of her father's actions on season 8.) Adam seems kind of delusional about how good of a player he actually was. Jeff, as much as I love him... he seems to take being evicted/targeted way too personally. Remember, Jeff, even Rob Mariano needed four seasons of Survivor (and a pair of TAR appearances) before he had a cast that was willing to lay down and let him win...
  7. Should Rachel and Porsche be the final two, it seems that Adam and Shelly decide the final outcome. Rachel has Jeff, Jordan, and Brendon's votes locked, and Porsche has Dani and Kalia's votes locked. I genuinely don't know what to believe from Shelly... did she mean what she said about wanting a newbie to win? I do believe Shelly would have voted for Jordan over a newbie but am not sure if she'd vote for Rachel or not. Adam I think would probably lean toward voting for Rachel. Porsche needs to keep both Shelly and Adam's votes to be able to win. Should Adam make the final two, it's really hard to predict how people would vote. Against Rachel he probably will get some votes just because I think Dani and Kalia would refuse to vote for her on general principle. Shelly and Porsche would be the wildcards in this scenario, but as long as Rachel can get a fourth vote beyond HERMAN and the Jordan/Jeff duo, she can pull it off. Would Adam win on being likeable or lose on being too passive of a player? Against Porsche, he can probably pull it off because I think the Jordan/Jeff and Rachel/Brendon votes are probably his to lose (and getting Shelly's vote is not out of the question). As for Jun vs. Alison... Alison played a scorched-earth game that was bound to piss off jurors (see also: Russell Hantz). Jun didn't play the best social game but was the quickest to figure out that the ticket to the half-million was sitting next to Alison, whom the jury disliked, and being seen as the lesser of two evils. She's an example of how a floater strategy can work effectively... not the most fascinating gameplay to watch, but it worked well for her. Plus, she's the only female houseguest that might be able to beat Kalia in a pie-eating contest.
  8. Oh, there's nothing inside... she really is completely devoid of anything upstairs. In a weird way, though, she had a decent amount of cunning that worked to her advantage. I think she did outplay her alliancemates Dani and Kalia in that she did play the social game a bit better, reaching out to people like Adam and Rachel. Although it may have been in part because she was viewed as less likely to win HOH or POV in a pinch, Porsche did manage to position herself quite nicely by being the least threatening and best tolerated member of her alliance, and therefore the last one standing. That exact gameplan got Jordan the half-million... She reminds me a bit of Karen from the movie Mean Girls, actually. She's just kind of a happy-go-lucky dim-witted follower to the popular girls.
  9. Although there are several other people in the house I find more irritating (Rachel, Shelly) or would struggle to have an intelligent conversation with (Porsche) or even people that have a track record of treating others with callous disregard or bullying (Dick and Dani, Jeff on a bad day.) Brendon is the one that I find the most off-putting. It's not just garden variety awkwardness, there's something not quite right there. I could see Brendon and Rachel being together for a long time... because fundamentally she's not a happy person and would probably be willing to mold herself into the person Brendon expects her to be. Think Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes... that creepy feeling I get where I can see Tom Cruise having to calculate how to interact with actual human beings I see in Brendon, and I hate to think that he sees Rachel as a fixer-upper property.
  10. The idea of Rachel winning is kind of perversely awesome. Six weeks ago, it seemed as though maybe if she faced Shelly she might have an outside chance at winning... but now, she has a real shot of winning this, and deservedly so. I'd feel better about her winning if I was reassured that she'd make Brendan sign a pre-nup. If she does win, the odds of her and HERMAN ending up on Amazing Race within the next 18 months goes up exponentially... and I have mixed feelings about that. Actually, this final three is pretty darned tolerable. Rachel has grated on my nerves at points but deserves the win and played one hell of an endgame, better than I'd have thought her capable of playing. I don't really have any objections to Adam or Porsche, either. Then again, there have been enough seasons where I've had to pin my final three hopes on the one person that I find the least sociopathic, that maybe my standards are lowered.
  11. I think that Porsche's question is this: does she want to get rid of the biggest threat to win the entire game, or the biggest threat to win the final HOH? Also, I can't gauge whether Porsche wants to face Adam in the final two or Rachel. The advantage to getting rid of Jordan is that none of the other three have a snowball's chance in hell at beating her. Keeping Jordan in the game really doesn't benefit any of the other three.
  12. The brilliance and simplicity of Jordan's game is that on paper, she poses absolutely no real threat... she's no master manipulator, she wins a few challenges through the season but is far from dominant. It seems as though she wouldn't be a danger to let slip through the cracks... and yet she is so well liked that she'd have the votes locked up no matter how dangerous the final two opponent she has to face. It's not the most proactive or spectacular game, but she's so easy to dismiss as an actual threat that you forget how endearing she would be to a jury. What I do like about Jordan is that what you see is what you get. Yeah, she lost her temper with Shelly, which I can't blame her for, but in two full seasons, that's the only example I can remember of Jordan getting vicious.
  13. The only thing standing in the way of the "Redemption of Rachel" story arc is Jordan. I really think, should the final 2 be Rachel vs. Jordan, that Rachel would get her butt kicked by Jordan. Jordan is BB's equivalent of Survivor's Sandra: everyone discounts her gameplay but forgets that she's so well-liked that she'd beat just about anybody. In order to win, Rachel needs to face one of the newbies, and she needs for one of them to get rid of her over getting rid of Jordan. Conversely, I think the newbies view Rachel as a greater threat in challenges and would prefer to oust her on general principle, so I can't quite figure out how that might happen. One thing is for sure: Rachel has surely earned the "Most Improved" award for the vets. In fact, I feel Brendon held her back more than anything.
  14. I have come to the conclusion that I actually don't mind Rachel all that much. Yes, her voice grates, and she's a bit of an attention whore (even by reality show contestant standards.) It's Brendon, and the way Rachel acts around Brendon, and Rachel and Brendon as an irritating unit, that gets to me. I kind of agree, too, that I don't think she's a mean girl so much as she's the type of women who typically gets along better with guys, and being around other women makes her insecure and needy, which makes other women find her obnoxious, which makes her more insecure and cling to the men, etc. Jordan and Rachel as a team has been much more fun to watch, just because I think the two of them are supportive of one another without bringing out the worst traits of their men (Jeff's signature blend of short temper, paranoia, and a dash of self-righteousness, and Brendon being an insufferable douche.) Last season, I remember making the comment that Rachel comes across as a ghetto store-brand Janelle. And, like Janelle, I think she has definitely improved some of the weaknesses in her game, to the extent where I can believe that she could win given the right opponent in the final. Rachel has definitely improved her social game (or isn't hindered by Brendon) despite being in the face of a counteralliance full of women that flat out don't like her.
  15. Oh, definitely, I completely agree that Shelly has dug her own grave and gets what she deserves in this situation, and I certainly wouldn't say that Shelly was a player in the same caliber as Will or Dick. I was just finding it interesting that Shelly's attracted so much vitriol for her behavior when in my opinion several other players have done things that are considerably worse, IMO. And as for hateful women on this show... I can honestly say that after the Manson family act on season 6, that Shelly is a joy to watch.
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