Entertainment, Survivor

Survivor: Game Changers – Power Rankings and Thoughts After Episode 9

Another fun episode of Survivor: Game Changers this week, despite the fact that for yet another week the person I wanted to succeed in the moment actually got voted out. This season keeps unfolding in ways opposite of what I’m wanting or expecting, with the exception of the Debbie vote of course. I was really hoping that Zeke could find some traction and actually make a late run in the show, despite having too good a story to get anywhere close to the final 3. My dream scenarios are just not meant to be this season, and honestly, it’s alright by me. I don’t hate this season at all, it’s interesting and they’re stacking up a bunch of advantages and idol opportunities that are actually being played (kept) well by the recipients, meaning we’re going to see big fireworks by the end of the game. Without any further ado, here’s this week’s power rankings:

  1. Tai Trang

– I got a little nervous watching Tribal Council this week when Tai received multiple votes despite not playing his idol. I figured Tai wouldn’t actually be voted out just based off of the edit, but the moment got me really concerned about his game awareness. I don’t really think Tai has a good grasp of the undercurrents of the game at this point, and I don’t think he’ll be able to make any kind of winning argument should he manage to get to the very end. I think Tai is drawing dead right now.

  1. Michaela Bradshaw

– Michaela has unfortunately just become a vote right now for Cirie’s alliance. She seemed visibly upset when Zeke was voted out, and that sort of made it clear to me that she’s not able to play the game the way she really wants to, at least not at this point in the contest. Unless Michaela finds some inroads to make her own moves, I think she’ll continue to be along for the ride without much of a chance to claim victory.

  1. Andrea Boehlke

– I guess Andrea can breathe a little better now that her strange battle with Zeke is finally behind her and the outcome went in her favor. But, there’s something strange about her portrayal on this season, and it has me very worried about her long-term success. She is getting a villainous edit, which doesn’t really seem in character for her based on how she’s been portrayed in previous seasons, and I have a hunch why that might be. I believe, at some point in the next few episodes, Andrea is going to get voted out in a spectacular fashion, likely with an idol play or an advantage play. That would explain why she’s been given a sour edit so far, so her grand exit can be seen as a glorious moment in the arc of the show. It’s just a guess of course, but don’t be shocked if it goes down like that.

  1. Troyzan Robertson

– Troyzan had one of the better little moments from the episode when he and Tai discussed how nice it would be if they could have an idol to play, while both of them were keeping secret the fact that they actually had idols. It was a funny thing to throw into the episode, but it keeps me anticipating when all of these idols and advantages that have piled up this season will come into play. I have a feeling there’s going to come a vote when every idol and advantage is going to get played all at once, kind of like Cambodia, and if it does end up being like that, it’s going to be a wild moment. Troyzan will need some luck to end up at the end, considering his alliance is outnumbered, but I don’t think he’s completely out of the running just yet.

  1. Sierra Dawn Thomas

– Sierra has played admirably so far, but I feel like her luck may be running low at this point. It seems like her only moves recently have been grasping at straws, offering herself up as a number and doing what everyone else wants. It might just be that the game strategy has finally moved away from her control, and when that happens there’s only so much you can do to survive. Sierra is in survival mode now, looking at final 6 as her only hope to make a big impact with her advantage.

  1. Aubry Bracco

– Aubry is playing a very similar game to the one she played last time; quiet, patient, smart, and social. She’s become a key player in what appears to be a successful alliance, and she’s made a few key moves behind the scenes to ensure the votes have gone as planned. I think Aubry just needs to stay on the same trajectory, and she could find herself sitting in another Final 3 with a good chance of winning.

  1. Brad Culpepper

– There’s something really compelling about Brad’s self-confidence as this game progresses. I thought Brad was arrogant his first time playing, but we’re seeing a much steadier, more grounded version of Brad this time, and I think he’s very capable of winning right now, simply because he seems to be in the right mindset.

  1. Sarah Lacina

– Sarah keeps playing well, there’s not much more to say than that. She’s a steady, smart player who is somehow managing to survive in the middle of alliances and stay successful. She is without question a candidate to win this season.

  1. Cirie Fields

– I still like Cirie as the favorite to win right now. It’s been my gut feeling all along that she could win if she got a chance to plant her roots, and after this vote it appears her roots are firmly planted, and the numbers are all on her on side. The only things that could derail her chances are all the idols and advantages in play, but if they do all blow up at once like I kind of expect the will, then she would just need to survive the foray to get to the end where she could plead an amazing case.

Thoughts After the Episode:

  • My player of the week honors go to Andrea for this episode. She squared herself up for a tough fight and she was victorious. I think she deserves some kudos for pushing her opinions during this voting cycle and getting the job done. Andrea is an underrated Survivor player, and I think she got some of the respect she’s always deserved this episode…My favorite moment of the episode was the Troyzan/Tai idol conversation I discussed earlier. I think it’s great how coy those guys are being considering they’re on the bottom of the numbers and at risk of being voted out. It’s also a nice tease because it’s basically suggesting that both of them have kept their idols secret so far. It’s not often that we get to see an authentically shocking idol play, but I think we may get one soon.

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