December 19, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Adam is the Sole Survivor

12/19/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , 2 comments
Week 13 - Finale and Reunion

Jay is upset that he threw away his Hidden Immunity Idol on the last vote and heads on a quest to find one last Idol to save him. It's the perfect time to find David's perfectly constructed fake Idol, which he even stashes in a painted coconut. Slow clap for this amazing craft project. Jay blows his chance at guaranteed safety when he forgets to cover up the secret code and every copies his answer. David ends up winning Immunity/Reward, and Jay uses the Reward Steal Advantage to steal the reward. But Jay's a good guy and includes David and Adam on the steak dinner reward to wine and dine them to the final three. Hannah and David are open to keeping around supershield Jay, but Adam knows that Jay has to go. At Tribal Council, they discussion that being well-fed and energized on day 36 is a huge advantage. You know what else is a huge advantage on day 36? The Legacy Advantage, which Ken plays and nulls out the one vote for him. Jay tries to play his fake Idol to no avail and is eliminated from the game.

Since it's the finale, the show needed to shoehorn in the battle of the generations by making the castaways solve a puzzle that said, "NOT A PARTICIPATION TROPHY." Ken wins immunity, not that anyone was planning to get him. David and Adam are targeting each other but Adam has a secret weapon: a second Hidden Immunity Idol he found earlier that day. Adam is giddy to reveal his plans to Hannah, who completely upends everything to run this vote. At Tribal Council, Adam plays his newfound idol but it doesn't matter. Hannah convinces David and Ken to switch their target from Adam to Bret, and Bret is eliminated from the game.

David isn't the only person surprised that Hannah saved him; Adam is livid at what could be a game-ending decision for them. The biggest decider of all will be the Immunity Challenge, which is a tense maneuver/stacking challenge resulting in a sudden death tiebreaker between Ken and Hannah. Ken wins the final Immunity Challenge and guarantees his spot in the final four, which means a 2-2 tie and firemaking challenge is likely imminent. All Adam wants is to finally boot David and even Hannah knows this is finally the time to say goodbye to David. What what about Ken, David's tightest ally? Ken, whose whole game is based on honor and loyalty. But can Ken beat David? At Tribal Council, Ken makes his biggest move yet and votes out his ally David for a better shot at winning the million dollar prize.

Adam, Hannah, and Ken celebrate day 39 with the traditional breakfast while heading into the toughest night of their voyage (except maybe being evacuated for a cyclone). The final three take their seats on the stumps and Jeff Probst brings in the jury (standout: Zeke in a shirt that I can only articulate as Saved by the Bell opening credits). A few jurors take the bait of shoving in Millennial and Gen X references to ask the typical questions. Ken explains he's an old school player based on loyalty, but the jury has mixed opinions. Will says it's a big move he's proud of, while Jessica points out it was cutthroat to eliminate his tightest ally on day 38. He's also pretty offended at the idea that Adam convinced him to vote out David; that was Ken's choice and no one elses. Hannah's argument is that she played a strategic game and is accountable for many of the jurors being eliminated, but many believe she's a flipper. Hannah's a very articulate finalist who owns and defends all her moves in a fantastic way. She totally owns this final Tribal Council, in my opinion, as she tries to take the win from Adam. Adam believes he played the strongest game of the final three and was able to make moves while avoiding being the target by not being the biggest person in control. It's pointed out that Adam was on the wrong side on the votes many times, which he explains he was able to fix his blunders. At the very end of Tribal Council, Adam reveals to the jury that he is playing this game for his family and his mom, home battling lung cancer. It's an emotional ending to a tough and defensive Tribal Council.

Flashforward to the live reunion and Jeff Probst comes out on stage without a jet ski or anything cool. In a unanimous vote, Adam is named the sole Survivor of Millennials vs. Gen X. It's an extremely emotional evening as it's revealed that Adam returned home and was able to tell his mother he felt he won the game before she passed away an hour later. But as Adam points out, sure this is a powerful story but it's also his life. Tears! Hannah, one of the strongest strategic players of the season, is relegated to a question about flirting with Ken which is absolute BS. In other news, Figtails is no more and Taylor just became a dad to a baby that didn't come from Figgy. David and Zeke both grew from the experience to become stronger people, while Bret appreciates being able to be open about his true self to Zeke while in Fiji. Jessica felt she had to stay true to her group and go to rocks and take a chance. Basically, almost everyone gets a question but I'm not recapping them all because.. that's dull. Just know, there was no Sia which means more time to actually hear updates from the players.

We end the finale with a preview of Survivor 34: Game Changers featuring a two-time winner, people who are playing for the fourth time, and other people where they will stretch the meaning of what a "game changer" is to justify casting. See you in March!

There's one last prize you guys: Pre-Show Winner Prediction trophies! My pick to win, Chris, made the jury but alas brought me no victory. However, four lucky folks correctly guessed Adam to win and they win the trophy! Congratulations!

[All images credited to CBS]

December 11, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Double Header

12/11/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 12

Jay has the last Hidden Immunity Idol of the game, but he has no need to play it after winning the balance beam and disc rolling Immunity Challenge. Headed by Will and Jay, they try to assemble to votes needed for the next big move: David. Will's newfound confidence and desire for a "resume" padded with big moves (and a willingness to flip) makes him dangerous, so Adam decides the former swing vote is actually the biggest target. At Tribal Council, oonversation surrounds Will's big move last week and its impact to the game and alliances. What it all comes down to is everyone wants/needs to make a big move, but if you're noticed you won't last. This is definitely not the episode to play the "big move" drinking game. The group votes and ends in another blindside where Will is voted out. From high schooler to juror.

Oh wait, there's more! It's a double elimination episode.

Jay has no allies left but he does still have an idol and a keen ability to win individual immunity. Except on this day, Ken wins the timed puzzle solving Immunity Challenge and without guaranteed safety, Jay's in big trouble. David expects Jay to play the idol, which means there's a good chance David would get eliminated, so he recommends voting out Bret. Hannah thinks Sunday is a better person to vote out because she's a potential goat to bring to the end of the game. Adam doesn't want Jay or David in the game and wants to make sure one or the other goes home. Adam lets Jay in on the plan to an extent, telling Jay he needs to play the idol. In this moment of truth, Adam shares with Jay the biggest secret of all: his mother has cancer and is dying. Jay pulls his buff down over his face to mask the tears as Adam's story hits close to home because his mom has brain aneurysms. It's a true bonding moment between the two men.

Tribal Council time! David stresses the importance of friendships and bonds to get ahead in the game. Jay knows being a challenge beast and no allies is a pretty bad space to be in tonight. Sunday voices that people underestimate her and believes she could get votes at the end. Adam points out that everyone has been playing the game in their own way but it's ultimately up to the jury to reward whose game they liked best. The votes are cast and Jay plays his idol so he doesn't live with possible regret of going home with an idol in his pocket. The idol doesn't matter though, when the majority of the tribe votes Sunday out of the game.

And so the final six are crowned and it's going to be one busy finale.

[All images credited to CBS]

December 4, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Crotch Idol

12/04/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 11

Get out your tissues - it's family visit time! Everyone ugly cries at the big reveal of their families coming out to Fiji. Addressing the elephant in the room (or on the island), Adam announces to everyone that he will not use his advantage to steal a family visit. Jay wins the rope wrangling obstacle course Reward Challenge and gets to hang out with his sister at BBQ and chooses Will, Sunday, and Adam to join him. Now that's good karma! Adam continues the pay-it-forward lovefest and gives the reward steal advantage to Jay. It's all very bittersweet because Adam also hears from his brother that they stopped their mother's cancer treatment. I feel like everyone watching this episode used half a box of tissues during the first half hour.

Zeke is feeling pretty great about having the numbers on his side to finally vote out David. Except Will becomes concerned that he won't get any credit for the moves he's made throughout the game if he makes it to the finale. Will decides getting rid of Zeke can be his defining resume item and begins to get others on board with his plan. Dude, you had such the perfect chance 3 days ago. Will tells new Legacy Advantage holder Ken that he's the target, and after Ken's ramblings of honor and integrity, he totally blows up Will's spot. All of Will's scheming is outed to the entire tribe. But no one is that mad at Will! Instead it's a fight to get Will on their side to regain controlling numbers.

Tribal Council time! It's quickly discussed that there are two sides in this game and Will is smack dab in the middle as the swing vote. Will wants to be respected as an 18 year old man, but spend a large portion of Tribal Council cringing whenever there's a mention of his age or the "big boys". Zeke, Sunday, Bret, and Jay try to keep Will on their side, but there's some patronizing in their comments. David, Adam, and Hannah do a better job in pointing out how Will is being used and this is a great time to make a move. The begins to vote and Hannah seems to get the vibe again that it's her name on the parchment (question: is this a right instinct or something she says weekly?) Concerned about a possible spit again, individual immunity holder Adam surprises everyone and busts his Hidden Immunity Idol right out of his crotch region. He plays the idol for Hannah voiding all 4 votes cast against her. Turns out, Will did make his big move; Zeke is voted out of the game with 5 votes.

[All images credited to CBS]

November 27, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Million Dollar Rock Draw

11/27/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 10

A floating pizza party is the reward up for grabs, which is probably straight from my dream journal. David tries to volunteer to sit out since he's terrible at water challenges but everyone encourages him to try because they believe in him. David is teary-eyed over everyone's support of him, realizing how much he's changed as a person. That said, David's team does lose per his prophecy and Zeke, Adam, Bret, Sunday, and Hannah win the slices on the sea. But that's not all! There are letters from home which brings Adam to tears because his mom has cancer and no one else knows.

Completing the "David is a new man" arc, he wins Individual Immunity after holding up a tiki the longest with a bamboo pole, outlasting muscle fatigue and all the ants crawling on his stomach. He's also really stepping up as a strategic force in the game, rallying his side to vote out Chris this week. But he's not the only Gen X breaking through their kumbaya facade: Chris is targeting Jessica. After word gets out via a wacky game of Survivor Telephone that Jay has an idol, a plan comes together to try and flush Jay's idol and blindside Jess. It's Zeke in the middle because he's created bonds with both sides and has set himself up as the ally to everyone. Where will he vote?

Tribal Council time! Jay plays up his outsider status and David explains that tonight could be the predictable vote or a blindside. Zeke talks about the votes being a mix of a voting block and alliance, which Hannah eventually dubs a "trust cluster." Everyone uses the word trust over and over because this vote is being dictated by who they don't trust. Each person expresses they're 100% confident in their vote which means one side is going to be pretty disappointed. That disappointment lies with Chris, who is voted out of the game. And I'm out a winner pick yet again.

HOUR TWO! That's right, two hours!

Where the first hour was a battle between Gen X, the second hour is a battle of the two strongest players in the game: Zeke and David. Zeke succeeds in recruiting Chris' former allies, bonding with Bret on an even stronger level after winning a snake-crawl, butt-crack bearing Reward Challenge. Winners Bret, Zeke, Sunday, and David are whisked away on a helicopter (Sunday's Survivor goal) and land to dine on a delicious lunch. Once isolated from David and Sunday, Bret comes out to Zeke. It's a truly wonderful moment of Survivor and the first time this generational theme organically plays out.

Jay slaughters everyone in a maze puzzle and slide puzzle Immunity Challenge, but honestly he probably wouldn't have been targeted. David realizes his attempts to woo Bret and Sunday were a total waste and Zeke knows all of his plans. He implores his allies to put Zeke's name down tonight because they're going after each other. Hannah is ready to turn on Zeke, but she can't form a proper lie in front of Zeke which makes him realize she's not on his side and sharing intel. Since David has an idol, Zeke changes his target to Hannah and rallies his numbers. Hannah is uneasy after her dreadful conversation with Zeke and hopes David will keep his word to use his Hidden Immunity Idol on her because a tie vote is likely coming.

Tribal Council time! The only person who feels safe is Jay since he's rocking the Immunity necklace. Bret gets really annoyed about the "trust clusters" and gets sassy at Ken. There's lots of whispering happening with Adam and Hannah trying to get a sense of where the vote is going, with Sunday telling them the plan is Ken. After the votes are cast, David gets up to play his Idol and Adam interjects to let David know the whispers were about voting for Ken. David plays his Immunity Idol for Ken and all votes against Ken are null. Except there are no votes for Ken. It's a 5-5 split between Hannah and Zeke. A re-vote occurs but nothing changes, which means the group must come to a unanimous decision about who should be eliminated or else it goes to rocks. No one wants to go to rocks, but no one budges. And so it goes to rocks!! Four people don't have to face this dreaded rock pull: Jay who has the Immunity necklace, Ken who had the Immunity Idol played on him, and Hannah and Zeke are immune due to the lack of a decision. The remaining six survivors put their hands into the bag and pull a rock, terrified of the outcome. Probst asks everyone to reveal their rocks and the black rock is in the hand of Jessica. She is eliminated from the game while the group cries over this disastrous Tribal Council. Let us not forget that Jess holds the Legacy Advantage and now that she's eliminated, the advantage must be passed along so she chooses to give it to Ken. GUYS- this episode was insane and everything I love about Survivor.

[All images credited to CBS]

November 20, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Food Fight

11/20/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 9

Despite trying to vote out Adam last week, Taylor agrees to keep Adam's reward steal advantage a secret as long as Adam doesn't tell everyone about his mason jar stash of stolen snacks. Taylor continues to mainline the calories when he wins the Reward Challenge to dine poolside at a resort along with Chris, Ken, Sunday, David, and Bret (whose feast indulgence of choice bottomless cocktails). While the Gen X group seems to have put aside their differences, it's actually far from the truth. Sunday finally speaks up that she wants to make a move against Jessica, who Sunday believes is gunning for her. Sunday's plan: use Jay to make a move.

Jay's in a real bad mood this episode, what with losing one of his tightest allies and being told by Adam that he's obviously on the bottom along with Taylor and Will. The remaining duo of the once Triforce try to win the ball balancing balance beam Immunity Challenge, but fail to beat Ken. Meanwhile, Will and Zeke are so comfortable with their status (or knew they'd lose) that they chose to sit out of the challenge to chow down on ham and cheese. Well I'd hop out if I could guzzle that whole ice cold pitcher of Coke. The dominant alliance decide to split their votes between Taylor and Jay just in case an Idol is played, which bums out Sunday who is still hellbent on getting rid of Jessica. Jay and Taylor are pretty aware their fates are sealed, so they share secrets together: Taylor reveals his food stash and Adam's advantage, and Jay tells him about his Hidden Immunity Idol. With such huge game knowledge in their hands they decide to blow up Adam's spot at Tribal Council because why use it to try and make a move?

Tribal Council time! Jay, Taylor, and Will acknowledge they were on the wrong side and Chris suggests there are cracks to allow them a chance to continue playing. Taylor decides to slam one more giant crack into the game and reveals he stole and buried two jars of food... with the help of Adam! Now guys, we know Adam was present but didn't partake but no one else knows what to think as Jay and Taylor throw a mortified Adam under the bus, who defends himself as hard as he can. But that's not all! Taylor also reveals Adam has an advantage, which Adam admits to and explains to the group that he can take a reward that someone else won. The tribe is stunned and more aware than ever, but in the end it doesn't change much. Taylor is voted out of the game with a belly full of dried apricots. I've never been so tired of hearing about snacks in my life.

[All images credited to CBS]

November 13, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Merges and Mason Jars

11/13/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 8

Hey everyone, it's merge time! The tribes move into their new home on the old Vanua beach and dub themselves Vinaka, which I can only hope is someone misunderstanding the mouth spray brand name. Everyone indulges in the merge feast while making introductions, but also keeping close watch on which friendships are a little too happy to see each other. The Millennials plan to stay together, but there are fractures forming that the Gen X group hopes to use to regain control.

The Triforce (Jay, Taylor, and Michelle) are happy to be reunited, but the other castaways are very aware that Jay is a power player after his move to blindside Michaela. But he's able to skate by as a merge boot target once Taylor annoys the Gen X crew by late-night binge eating all their dried bananas and other merge snacks. Listen, he's a self-described Mason Jar pro so I guess that means he knows how to open jars. Adam sees an opportunity to secretly align with the much-maligned Taylor, but he's a man still scorned by Adam ousting his island girlfriend. Adam shows his hand way too easily to Taylor, revealing that he found an advantage to steal a reward AND that he thinks they should target fellow Millennial Will. Taylor quickly spills all these secrets to Jay and suggests blindsiding Adam. Zeke overhears all of this and realizes the mess Adam has created.

The first individual Immunity Challenge is a classic endurance competition to balance on a perch and hold a bar over their heads - let go and you're splashed with tinted water. If you've ever wanted to see the illusion of strawberry milk pouring over someone's head, this is your challenge. Since Taylor couldn't keep his mouth shut, Will is aware of his target status and holds on for dear life to save himself in the game. Jay rounds up the Millennials and tells them they should vote out Adam tonight for turning on the Millennials, which Michelle thinks is a bad move driven solely on personal vengeance instead of game strategy. Zeke and Adam talk to the Gen X about targeting Taylor, but they are worried Jay will share his idol with Taylor so David suggests Michelle instead. Adam gullibly goes back to Taylor again to try and shift the target, and his paranoia frustrates his allies too. Well, at least in the worst case scenario Adam has a Hidden Immunity Idol to save himself.

Tribal Council time! Now as one jumbled group, Jeff Probst has to ask about the age gap differences. Quickly it's about the Millennials being hungrier, specifically Taylor who still doesn't view his actions as a problem. Probst asks if this is something Millennials do, and Chris wisely points out it's just about selfishness which is a politer way of how I'd phrase it (being an asshole). The discussion really seems to land on that it's no longer a battle of Millennial versus Gen X and rather about working with the people you trust. Everyone teases tonight's vote will be a line in the sand between the sides. When the votes are read it's clear that it's no longer the generation war the title of the season foretold. Adam, Hannah, and Zeke vote with the Gen X group and vote off Michelle.

[All images credited to CBS]

November 6, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Things That Make You Go "WHAT?!"

11/06/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 7

Adam apologizes to Taylor about ruining his game and voting off his showmance, but Michaela is pretty happy to see Figgy got the boot once the tribes meet up at the Reward Challenge. It's another ball-centric challenge to retrieve and shoot balls, which Vanua wins and Michaela comes from behind to win a kebab platter for Ikabula. Vanua wins a meal cooked for them by a chef, eating and farting to their heart's delight (and Michelle's chagrin). Michelle is the outsider on the Vanua tribe, especially with David possibly gaining a new ally by revealing his Hidden Immunity Idol possession to Zeke. Eventhough Ken totally blows the Reward Challenge for Takali, him and Jessica still have the majority in the tribe so Taylor tries to get back into their good graces by talking about grown up things like the electoral college system, and eventually vowing loyalty until the end.

Ikalbula's Millennial-dominated tribe make Gen X Bret and Sunday the easiest targets to pick off without causing much drama. Bret's under even more scrutiny when his honesty is questioned by Hannah, who 70% believes Bret is lying about being a "funeral directah" and is actually a cop (ding ding ding). When Ikabula loses the Immunity Challenge by failing to launch sandbags at targets accurately, the Millennials agree to split the vote between Bret and Sunday in case there's an Immunity Idol. But as Michaela shows her strategic side by counting out allies with rocks, Jay realizes that he needs to send Michaela home before the merge. Michaela might be loyal to their side, but Jay and Will worry that once the impending merge happens, she'll slaughter them in challenges and take this whole game. Oh and she knows their Hidden Immunity Idol secret which is ammo for a future blindside.

Tribal Council! Michaela discusses that she likes her current group on Ikabula and the Millennials on the other tribes are sketchy people. Sunday thought there would be scrambling, but alas they quietly sat on a log, extremely aware that her and Bret are the outsiders. Will thinks a wild game without tight allies is dangerous, citing Tony, the infamous winner of Cagayan. Will and Jay both agree that this vote will leave the group with trustworthy people with tighter bonds. Michaela doesn't want Bret or Sunday to feel at the bottom, it's just what has to happen because of numbers. Buuuuut the votes are revealed and Michaela is floored to see her allies Jay and Will turned on her. Jay stares Michaela down and takes total ownership for his ballsy move. Michaela is pissed, almost forgetting her shoes in the process.

[All images credited to CBS]

October 30, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: The Demise of Figtails

10/30/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 6

The tribes compete in a classic Survivor blindfold challenge with a caller directing their tribe to retrieve puzzle pieces and help a castaway solve the puzzle blindfolded. Figgy gets a big lead for her tribe as caller but the other tribes are just so much better at puzzle than Figs, so her tribe loses the reward of milk, cookies, cupcakes, and pie. It was probably hot milk anyways. Meanwhile, Hannah has a panic attack on the sidelines for the challenge from all the suppressed stress of this game. Hopefully a cookie will help. A cookie is definitely just another prize of the day for Jay, who finds the Ikabula Hidden Immunity Idol with Will. Too bad Michaela stumbles upon this big moment and knows about it too - whoops!

It's really not going so well for Figgy. She blew the challenge for Takali and made Michelle a target on the Vanua tribe by outing how tight they are. But at least she has Taylor? Because neither can keep a secret in any way, the self-dubbed Figtails decide to reveal their showmance to Ken and Jessica and SURPRISE, they're not surprised. When it comes to the Immunity Challenge, Michaela actually gives advice to a the Vanua tribe to beat Figgy at the balance puzzle (I guess this is the good deed after berating her tribemate Hannah the whole time during the puzzle). Figgy's terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day continues with yet another challenge loss due to her blowing a lead. Heading to their first Tribal Council as a shuffled tribe, Adam has to choose a side between Figtails and Gen X. Figtails wants to target Ken who they consider an impending merge threat, while Jessica and Ken want to target Figgy since she's the brains of the showmance. Adam is worried about putting his trust in a future group of allies he's never even spoke to. What's a Millennial to do?

Tribal Council time! Taylor is very confident that the three Millennials will stick together to pick off Gen X. The showmance is called out and everyone laughs about how obvious it has been. Jeff Probst offers his ordained minister services to hopefully get ratings gold, but alas Figtails aren't that serious. Figgy tries to explain away their showmance as two people that will always vote together which isn't any better when this is a game of numbers. Taylor believes if Adam flips to the Gen X side all the Millennials will join forces come merge to boot him. Adam explains he knows his vote will upset someone leaving and someone returning, but he's thinking of the longterm. With a 3-2 vote the tribe has spoken and Figgy is voted out of the game. The fans rejoice at never having to see Taylor whisper flirt with Figgy again.

Sidebar: this week in Survivor, I had the amazing opportunity to attend Rob Has a Podcast's Survivor Know-It-Alls LIVE. It was so much fun to watch the episode with castaways old and new, as well as finally meet in person some of my longtime Twitter friends. Thanks for a fun night everyone, especially Rob Cesternino for hosting one of my favorite weekly Survivor podcasts.

[All images credited to CBS]

October 23, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X - CeCe Ya Later

10/23/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 5

After David's bold play last episode, the Gen X tribe goes idol hunting. Knowing what to look for already, David finds his second Hidden Immunity Idol stuffed inside a branch. And it's good thing he found it then because it's time for a Tribe Swap! The 16 castaways are shuffled into three tribes, with one tribe getting six people since they're starting from scratch. Most are able to put on decent poker faces at the swap, but Michaela can't hide her rage. I mean, I think the neon green buffs are kinda cool but I'm sitting on a couch typing this.

Michaela's initial pissed-off-ness settles down over at the new Ikabula camp and she builds fire for her tribe. Ikabula has a 4-2 advantage in the numbers with Millennials (Michaela, Jay, Will, Hannah) outnumbering Gen X (Sunday, Bret). Jay's a little cocky they have the numbers, but you never know with Survivor. Much to viewers chagrin, "Figtails" are not split apart and join Adam, Jessica, and Ken on the new Takali tribe. Taylor can barely keep it in his pants, mouthing "You are hot" to Figgy after she insists they attempt to keep their not-so-secret romance under wraps. Jessica and Ken are newly bonded after last week's trust betrayal after she revealed the legacy advantage to him. Their hope is that Adam would be willing to flip on Figgy and Taylor - a scenario Adam is definitely pondering. Vanua's new members are CeCe, David, Chris, Zeke, and Michelle - the only Gen X dominated tribe. Zeke and Chris become instant BFFs over their Oklahoma roots and a tight partnership seems to form immediately. 

Vanua is slaughtered at the Immunity Challenge retrieve buoys underwater and toss them into a basket. David and CeCe have the ofterall worst challenge performance which makes for easy targets at the upcoming Tribal Council, though CeCe assumes as the majority the Gen X will vote off a "millennium". Chris would like revenge for the previous Gen X backstabbing and chooses to keep David since he'll have numbers in a merge. Chris implores David that they need to get rid of CeCe because of her challenge performance. Word gets back to David that Michelle was campaigning to vote him out, which makes David re-think the plan to get rid of CeCe and return to his initial instinct of voting off Michelle. Yet again David wonders if he should use a Hidden Immunity Idol on an ally, which I feel like in the future might as well be called "Pulling a David".

Tribal Council time! Probst gets right to it to ask who is on the bottom in this shuffle, and David says the Gen X likely aren't the bottom given their majority. Zeke stresses that in order to move along and make a move in this game, the Gen X will have to work with Millennials. Chris agrees with this notion and hopes tonight's vote will rebuild some of the prior loss of trust with the Gen Xers. Michelle calls out David specifically as someone she'd like to vote out which maybe isn't the slickest of moves, especially since he's not really the night's target. David decides to show loyalty to Chris this week and votes with the majority to get rid of a surprised CeCe.

[All images credited to CBS]

October 16, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs Gen X: Lucy Speaks, Lucy Goes

10/16/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 4

The tribes compete in the first Reward Challenge of the season, an all-out physical ocean brawl of capture the giant ring. Gen X Chris is such a hulking giant he is able to hold Taylor back that he looks like a child flailing in the arms of his YMCA swimming teacher. Michaela decides to undo her bikini top and let the ta-tas free to win her heat and somewhere Dave from Survivor: China is like, "But I wrestled naked!" The Gen X tribe wins a sausage party but it doesn't really matter much since most of their tribe's focus is on Lucy actually speaking and being quite the schemer herself (more on that later). The Millennials might have lost the food, but young Adam is the true winner of the week after he sneaks off and finds the marked shell that contains a Hidden Immunity Idol.

The Gen X tribe loses the Immunity Challenge to lift tribe members to retrieve numbers and then solve an overly complicated word puzzle (the alleged classic "Somebody loses their flame tonight"). It's time for the Gen X tribe to lose another member and Lucy's earlier talks have put Jessica front and center after she led the ouster of Paul. But when Lucy tries to get Ken and David on her side, Ken doesn't appreciate her demands and rules of alliance compliance. Ken worries that booting Jessica will put him, David, and Cece back on the bottom, so he wants to bring in Jess to get a plan together to oust Lucy. Ken tells Jessica that Lucy is trying to blindside her, then the girl foolishly tells Lucy the entire plan. With all parties now informed of the various betrayals, Ken and Lucy get into it at camp and it seems like the plan is to just follow along and vote out Jessica. David is worried about being at the bottom again and wonders if maybe this is the time to make a big move with his Hidden Immunity Idol.

Tribal Council time! The tribe first addresses last vote's blindside, which only annoyed Chris and Bret since they weren't informed in advance. Well that's how a blindside works, fellas. Jessica hopes all fences have been mended and the five are back to a good place. Lucy admits maybe she used a wrong tone talking to Ken, but she figured he wouldn't care about tone when it's a move that allows him three more days of safety. Ken gives Jess the disappointed dad stare-down when she says she wasn't sure if she should trust him. The tribe casts their votes and Probst drops the declaration to play an idol. There's a second of silence before David decides to stand up and make a little speech before playing his idol for Jessica. The five votes against Jessica do not count, but the two against Lucy do. Two episodes of silence and one big night of talking and Lucy is voted out of the game.

[All images credited to CBS]

October 9, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: C U L8r Paul

10/09/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 3

Adam and Zeke reel in the aftermath of the Millennial's blindside of Mari, but Hannah's nonstop attempts to apologize and talk out her decision to flip annoy the hell out of Zeke. He doesn't want to talk to you right now! Knowing he is totally screwed in the numbers, Adam begins to work his way back into the fold and plants seed with Michaela that the she is obviously on the bottom of an alliance with the four person Triforce. The cool kids of the Triforce are just chillin' and overconfident in their position. On Gen X, David, Ken, and CeCe continue to work on their anti-Paul as he continues to assert himself as the tribe's alpha and attempted provider (he delivers no fish, unlike Ken Doll - don't call him that).

A summit happens between tribes, with four members from each tribe getting a chance to see the forced generational gap in person. Figgy, Taylor, Jay, and Will attend for the Millennials, while CeCe, David, Chris, and Paul are the Gen X representatives. They're treated with peanut butter and jelly while trying to gain intel and cover secrets. Nice try Taylor and Figgy, but everyone can tell you're hooking up. CeCe and David use their time to make Paul a target with the kiddies too, with David quickly switching back to frantic "I trust you!" mode. Overall it's a totally pointless twist since there's no swap, no hidden immunity idols - nothing.

Gen X loses the tribe due to CeCe's performance in the challenge, taking forever to cross the wonky balance beam with a heavy bag. The tribe is in agreement that CeCe is the target, but never trust an early declaration of doom. With nothing to lose, Ken and David try to get the target pointed in Paul's direction and they might get some takers. A conversation between Jessica and Paul leads to her being concerned that the men would group up and turn on the women down the line. It's all the ammunition Jessica needs to get the other women, plus the outsiders, on board to take out Paul.

Tribal Council! Probst gets a recap about the letdown of a summit with David concluding that now the Millennials are actual people. Chris stresses that this early in the game there is truly no bottom in a big alliance. But there is a bottom in the tribe itself, and CeCe admits she knows it is her. Probst points out that at the challenge the Millennials worked well as a team while the Gen X seemed to each go at it alone. All this perfect leads to the topic Jeff Probst has been dying to shoehorn in: Gen X people barely text and if they do, they use full words not abbreviations which are changing the lexicon. In 33 seasons of Survivor, this may be the most-forced, cringiest moment I have seen and I saw a man fall into a campfire. Jessica hopes the vote will bring together the tribe for them to succeed together. And with that, Paul is voted off the Gen X tribe.

[All images credited to CBS]

October 2, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Puppies, Butts, and Blindsides

10/02/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 2

The Millennial tribe is up and down this week and most of it centers around Figgy. Taylor and Figgy's flirtation escalates to late night smooching in the shelter, regardless of the fact that they haven't brushed their teeth in days. Figgy is arrogant enough to think no one views them as a power couple, but everyone sees their pairing as a problem including their Triforce ally, Jay. Michaela can't tolerate Figgy and the two get into an argument. You youths and your drama! Over on Gen X, David is turning his abysmal first few days around even if his outsider status might seal his fate. He builds fire, finds the "Hidden" Immunity Idol (I mean it's a painted coconut right in your face - it's kinda obvious), and makes a solid ally with octopus-catching babe Ken. The duo are very aware they are on the outside and need to take down "Paul's Posse." Paul almost gets booted from the game on his own when medical is brought in to treat his dehydration (which at first seems like a heart attack).

A beautiful overhead shot pans to the Immunity Challenge setup smack dab in the middle of the ocean. The challenge is for everyone to dive (poorly) into the ocean to jump off a platform to retrieve keys, then swim below to get rings, ending in a big ol' game of ring toss. Like any good carnie would have predicted, it comes down to the ring toss where Gen X defeats the Millennials to win immunity and a tarp. The Millennials head back to camp with what seems like a straightforward vote: Figgy. That is until Zeke tells Jay, who then tells Michelle. Michelle is not right to loose her tightest ally and break up the Triforce that is actually four people. Michelle heads over to convince high school student Will to join in on the plan, while Jay plays mediator for Figgy and Michaela. Once Jay tells Michaela that Zeke wants to target her next, she's ready to do what it takes to cover her own butt. Who to target instead? Mari, the professional gamer that the tribe already sees as a future threat to win the game.

Tribal Council time! The show's superfans are giddy to light their torch and take in the surroundings on the Tribal Council set. It's the first chance for Probst to use all his stereotypes of Millennials to compare it to their game. That's right guys, because Gen X people don't use phones or text anyone - only the youths! As Probst is doing his job and getting into the details of the Figgy/Taylor hookup and Michaela continues to lay into Figgy, there's an intense side conversation going on between Michelle and Hannah. Michelle is whispering to Hannah that her side is voting for Mari and Hannah is completely flustered. Probst eventually calls out the sidebar convo, but Mari brushes it off that Hannah is probably talking about "puppies or butts or something". When it comes time to vote, Hannah is genuinely torn and stands in the voting booth for long enough that Probst has to do a side pop-in like, "Hey you OK in there?" In a shocking first vote, the Millennials blindside Mari in a 7-3 vote.

[All images credited to CBS and Digi-Bridge]

September 25, 2016

Survivor Millennials vs. Gen X: Fun with Mother Nature

9/25/2016 Posted by Mel Got Served , No comments
Week 1

Twenty new castaways arrive in beautiful Fiji and our host with the most [blue shirts], Jeff Probst, can't wait to hand out buffs to reveal the tribe divisions. If the coordinating color palettes out of the outfits didn't give it away to them, then the buffs help to show it's young vs. old. Or if you like marketing buzzwords, Millennials vs. Gen X. It's the perfect twist to shove in lots of heavy handed convos about Millennials having things handed to them and Gen X being old fashioned. The generational differences in actions are put to the test in a fast grab to get all the supplies needed to survive, which has choices like fishing gear vs chickens or knife vs pots or pans. So much versus to use in one paragraph!

The Gen X arrives to their beach and immediately begin to work together on assembling a quality shelter that will protect them. The Millennials slap together a home that literally falls apart because they were too focused having fun and frolicking in the ocean. The weather is actually so horrendous that both tribes are given a tarp to protect them, which the Millennials promptly hang up super poorly. None of the shelter building work really matters because a major cyclone hits the island and destroys everything. But thankfully for the twenty castaways, the show evacuated them all before the storm fully hit them, taking boats to an undisclosed location for the night and leaving just a GoPro around to capture the storm. The tribes return the next day to see the storm's devastation but overall just re-enter the game like not much happened. Same to how I've covering it in this recap.

Let's talk about the tribes, shall we?

The Millennial tribe is Vanua, but I honestly thought their buffs said "Vanilla" and to be honest, I will call them "Vanilla" all season. Bros Taylor and Jay bond immediately and pull in cute bartender Figgy. The trio make no efforts to conceal that they are three best friends that will be ride or die until the end, dubbing themselves the Triforce. Michelle the missionary is also pulled into their trio, but she builds some other friendships that at least makes he appear less obnoxious than the other three. But will the Triforce make it far is a bigger question because barista Hannah and videogamer Mari begin the loose assembling of the "misfits" to target that trio (Figgy in particular) should they lose immunity. Just don't even lose Zeke, whose Hawaiian shirt gives me life not to mention he's the only one with the sense and leadership to put together a decent shelter after the storm and makes fire for the Vanilla tribe.

Gen X is a strong group in terms of camp life, but losing the first challenge (an obstacle course with the ability to skip obstacles and increase the number of puzzle pieces they have to handle) makes the group have to play the game a little sooner. The easy targets are those with the red flags. Rachel is a chatterbox and  claimed she was great at puzzles and blew it for the tribe. David also blew the puzzle and he's been a paranoid mess since day one. The tribe likes David's sense of humor which appears amongst his overall fear of everything and massive game overthinking. Feeling vulnerable and desperate, David is caught searching for a Hidden Immunity Idol and practically begs for safety by offering up his vote. Jessica the lawyer and her Bob Costas level red eyes talks to him, and if only David knew Jessica was holding onto a big advantage herself. During the supply grabfest, Jessica grabbed an envelope which she discovered holds the "Legacy Advantage" which will give her an advantage at day 36. And should Jessica not make it to day 36, she has to will it to another person. With this advantage and good relationships with the tribe, Jessica is definitely a subtle sleeper of the Takali tribe.

Tribal Council time! Jeff Probst wears a white shirt, maybe in gray, I don't even know and I'm losing my mind because Probst is a blue man. Maybe a black. I digress. After talking about the storm for a hot second, talk turns to David. "Oh crap" is his response to having to verbalize everything with Probst. David understands he could be a target due to his own behavior, but truly wants to be in the game. He says tonight he'll prove he can be trusted (AKA vote a certain way). Rachel vocalizes that maybe her saying "what is" puts more of a target on her, but that's basically all we hear from her. The votes are scattered all over the place: one for David, one for Sunday, three for CeCe... but five for Rachel. She's the first eliminated from the game and really I don't have much to say about her departure. 

[All images credited to CBS]