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EPISODE 13: "Closure" - By 'AyaK'

Before we begin, a word of explanation is in order…

Many of you may see this thread and ask the obvious question:
“Survivor ONE? Didn’t it end in August 2000?”

Well, yes, it did. This website was formed during its run. At the time, there was a poster on the now defunct SurvivorSucks (SS) named Island Heat, a gay male, who had incurred the wrath of the powers-that-be at SS by posting “unauthorized” summaries on their board. For whatever reason, DogStalker, the head of SS, treated these summaries as if they were a personal affront and booted Island Heat from his board in a so-called “Board Tribal Council.”

Those of us at SurvivorBlows (SB) were a little crew of rebels led by Webby, who had brought SB into existence all by himself. For this act, he was booted from SS in the same BTC as Island Heat. Island Heat thus came here and brought his summaries with him, and they became the first “official” SB summaries.

But Island Heat never did a summary for the last episode of S1. He e-mailed us that he had personal problems but would try to post soon. Then … nothing. Thus, the summaries of S1 in the archives stop without ever reaching the end.

Well, I’ve been working on the summaries for this board, and I’m one of those anal-retentive people that I mock below. It’s always bothered me that we left the last chapter out of S1, especially now that we’re returning to a 39-day format in S3. But what to do about it?

Here’s what I did. I hope you enjoy it, over a year later.



They really did it. We doubted them, we mocked them, we dreamed up scenarios in which they would turn on each other like the human piranha they are, we found some weird picture on the CBS Web site that led us to believe that Gervase, Mr. Under-The-Radar himself, won this stupid game, we got tricked and humiliated by a faked picture from Evil Mark Burnett … but none of it affected the Tagi Alliance one bit. Here we are, at the beginning of the highest-rated show CBS has seen since “Who Shot J.R.?”, and we’re staring at the same four mugs that all America has come to know and hate.

Richard Hatch. Susan Hawk. Rudy Boesch. Kelly Wigglesworth. The Tagi 4. Fresh from a life of crime (Kelly, want a stolen credit card?). Soon to return to a life of crime (Dicque, here’s the new “ChildWhip™” –interested in an endorsement deal?). The “lovable” one makes Archie Bunker look tolerant (“I hate queers.”). The “unlovable” one drives a truck, which rhymes with the one thing that no one in America would like to do with her. Across America, people ask themselves one question: what have we done to deserve this?

Mark Burnett isn’t asking that question. The Evil One has carefully manipulated us to this moment. Who will win? We’re all so Pavlovian by this point in the season that we start salivating as soon as the theme song breaks out and the opening credits roll across this band of losers for one last time. “MAROONED” … yeah, and they must have been “moroned” too, since they all fell victim to Richard’s shifty lying little clique. All of ‘em, from the noble Gretchen to the insufferable Ivy League disgrace Grog to the mad doctor Sean to the flea-bitten Cooleen, eaten by these cannibals. Now they have to eat each other. I can’t wait.

Day 37: Keep On Truckin’

We open with a shot of Soo shaving the Rudeman. Rudy explains that, after Soo and Kelly finished shaving their armpits, he gets to borrow the blade to shave his beard. It’s obvious that no one trusts Kelly with a sharp object any longer, and she probably doesn’t trust them any further than she could throw them. She couldn’t throw Dicque very far, though, because, despite his repeated proclamations that he’s lost 30 pounds, it’s obvious that 30 pounds is merely the fat rolls that used to be on top of the other fat rolls. Dicque claims that he lost muscle. Yeah, right. Like you could find a muscle under all that. Rudy talks about cooking rice, over and over and over and over and over … as if he would have stayed on the island this long if he hadn’t decided to be Dicque’s houseboy, ex-SEAL or not.

Kelly talks about how the game is driving her insane. No, Kelly, you went insane before the game, when you went on your crime spree, jumped bail, and then had your quickie marriage/divorce in Vegas. The game had nothing to do with it.

Sue talks about how horrible it is sleeping next to the enemy. Like everyone else on Pulau Tiga hadn’t been thinking those same thoughts about her since Day 1. At least Kelly doesn’t look like a circus freak (well, except for that big tattoo, but I digress…).

Dicque tells us again that these people didn’t understand that “Outlast” was the most important part of the game, and that it was easier to get there by “Outwit” than by “Outplay”. As if even a dung beetle couldn’t outwit Grog and the Pa-goners. Et cetera, et cetera, as Evil Mark works off his debt to Pulau Tiga by showing enough dreamy, boring shots of the island to keep us away from it for the rest of our lives, out of fear that we would once again be this bored.

Time for the Immunity Challenge, as a pouch of pictures of the not-so-dearly departed arrive with the riddle. The Toggy Alliance figures out at once that they don’t know jack about these guys and pledges to make sure of only one thing – that it’s everyone against Kelly. Poor Kelly. Instead of maybe having a hot date with a Pa-goon, she gets the wrath of Sooooooie by being in Toggy. All that’s kept her alive so far is her three-challenge win streak (2 ICs, pole-balancing (almost as much fun as watching paint dry!) and Blair Witch (“I dunno”), and one RC, the designated product placement for Boobweiser). “Back to the trailer park for you, traitor”, the rural hill trash truck driver says in her confessional. Kelly says they all can kiss her flea-bitten ass. Thanks, but I’d rather start with Colleen’s, OK? And so, against the backdrop of hot steaming venom, we walk to TC #1 with Jiffy.

“Fallen Comrades” is the name of this game, for those of you who are anal-retentive. Memorize it, then call a good shrink and seek help immediately. 10 questions – most right wins. And such great questions, too! “What are the names of Henna’s kids?” Kelly can’t stop herself from showing off by giving the middle names too. Everyone else thought Henna was … who was she again? The one who slept/didn’t sleep with Grog? Another Henna moment, as her shirt is passed around to be identified in another question. Roodie mistakes it for a Bible and wipes his ass with it. Even poor dumb Sha-yawn is the topic of a question, as Jiffy asks what his specialty was when he was chief resident. Chief resident? SEAN? No wonder the mortality rate in hospitals is so high. I wouldn’t even let this guy cut my hangnail, let alone operate on my nervous system. Last question: name all the Pagong voted off, in order. As the Taggie try to remember what a Pagong was, they all scratch their heads. Lice and fleas fly everywhere.

And we have … a TIE. Yes, folks, Kelly and Soozun, the two long-lost lovers, have each answered the same number of questions correctly. Richard finishes last. Now, he has to know that he could be in trouble here, so … let’s just give him poor marks on “plays well with others” on his report card, shall we? And Rudy – well, he did better than in Blair Witch, I’ll give him that. After all, it isn’t humanly possible to do worse than zero. Malnutrition or ignorance, you be the judge.

And so it all comes down to one question. Jiffy asks, “What is Sonja’s last name?” Soo answers … naah, she doesn’t even guess. Kelly knows. Kelly wins immunity for the third straight time. The other three start to feel the tingle of the guillotine blade on the back of their necks. No, that’s just more sand fleas biting their way in. Colleen shudders at the thought, as her scabbed-over legs don’t look at all better from four days of medical treatment, even though most of the men on the crew have taken turns applying lotion to them… but not Grog, who looks as if he’s trying to get the lead role in the remake of The Werewolf. Gervase wonders whether women from this part of the world know how to file paternity suits. Jenna wishes she’d never loaned them the shirt. Sean still marvels at the news that he was once a doctor before becoming a publicity whore. But they need to pay attention again, because the vote comes up at once.

Dicque votes for Soo, asking the musical question, “Who knows why?” WE know why, you old SOB – we heard Rudy ask you over and over again to promise that you wouldn’t vote him off. We heard you say to Rudy, “Yeah, sure, now bend over.” Rudy votes for Soo, too. Guess a shave with a used blade isn’t what Rudy wants from his women. Soo votes for Dicque. Ooh, the knife blades are out in force. We count the votes … and find that Kelly also votes for Dicque. ANOTHER tie. What do we do here? <Author’s note: As I understand it, what they really DID do here was go into a huddle for 45 minutes to figure out how to break the tie, while all of the Taggies had to shiver in the dying embers of the fire. Maybe they hoped that Rudy would drop dead from exposure before the revote. Or maybe Evil Mark simply is SO DUMB that it never occurred to him that Kelly might WIN this challenge? We’ll never know.>

Jiffy tells the Tagi that Rudy and Kelly need to revote for either Dicque and Soo, but first he’d let Dicque and Soo address the other person that voted for him or her, if they can figure it out. As if it’s some mystery – hah! Dicque calls Kelly “Kells Bells.” That’s a new one. He asks Kelly to keep in mind that he had pulled the alliance together and kept all the responsibility for strategy away from mussing up her pretty little head. Soo does little more than bleat at Roodie that he knows her and she knows him. Yeah, and bad TV knows both of you.

They revote. This is going to be a tie as well, right? I mean, Kelly has to know that she’s dead meat if she boots Soo, right? Soo is the only person Kelly can be sure of beating. Roodie kicks her butt. She and Dicque are a toss-up. So it’s another tie, right? Evil Mark will have to think of another tiebreaker, right?

Jiffy opens up the jug and reads the votes: Sooo. Sooo. Say what? You call her Kells Bells, and her brain locks up? Maybe that accounts for her quickie marriage. I’ll have to keep that in mind if I’m ever in a room alone with her…

Soo mooooves over the bridge. Back to the CB and the big rigs – well, maybe only the little rigs would be interested in her. Kelly kisses a sure million bucks goodbye. Back to the beach for the next day.

Day 38: SEALing fate

It’s dark. Tagi is still asleep after walking back from TC. What’s this coming across the beach with a flashlight? Jiffy, up before the cock crows? Must be because of Colleen’s scabs. Ohh god no, not an all-day IC. Yep.

The Tagi three -- the GI, the gay and the girl – grab some clothes and follow Jiffy to the beach, where a big ugly totem pole has been erected on a spit of sand. Kelly and Dicque, who both have some experience with handling erect poles, wait expectantly. This challenge is named “Hands on the Immunity Idol.” Hey, didn’t I tell you anal-retentive people to go get some help before? Well, go do it now. That’s right, stop reading, take your hands away from any nearby erect poles, and dial the telephone.

The basic idea of this challenge is endurance: who wants it more? Well, that may depend upon what “it” is. Anyway, as the first rays of the sun start to illuminate the pristine beach, the three walk through a curtain of waving palm fronds borne by natives (bet MB paid them less than scale too!), then walk through a pathway marked with 13 torches for the 13 booted tribemates, then … slather themselves in mud? WTF? OK, so they’re going to walk across a bed of hot coals, but what’s this mud stuff? We get lots of shots of Kelly smearing mud all over her slim, barely-covered body and not very many of Rudy and Dicque. Ahh, MB must have been hoping for a final three of Colleen, Jenna and Kelly – maybe this was first going to be a mud wrestling challenge, because the mud serves no other earthly purpose, except one – as it dries, it’s going to make you danged uncomfortable. Nice touch, oh Evil One.

Anyway, the three lather up until they look like golems (look it up!), then stride confidently across the hot embers (safely protected by full-body mud, plus a layer of ash on the coal that makes it look like it was burning during TC last night) and reach the totem pole – where each of them must put one hand on the idol; last one still hanging on wins. Sort of the Survivor version of the marathon dance craze – hold on until you drop. Now we know why this challenge had to start in the wee hours of the morning. Did I say that a previous challenge was almost as exciting as watching paint dry? Well, it was twice as exciting as this one.

We soon learn that every half-hour, Jiffy comes by and tries to distract the people into letting go, plus they have to change positions, change platforms, and change hands – all without ever losing contact. Kinda like “Simon Says”, only dumber. At 90 minutes, Jiffy starts offering food and drinks during his visits. At 2 hours, an incredible thing happens: Dicque lets go and takes a drink and some food! We know strategy had to play the key role here, because most of us can imagine how long Dicque could hold on to a long hard rod… Dicque himself tells us that he thinks he’ll be in the final either way – right in front, and within earshot, of Kelly and Rudy. Talk about chutzpah – Dicque could give Alan Dershowitz lessons. Kelly starts to realize that she made a mistake even bigger than that night of unprotected sex in the back of a … but why am I telling you about this?

Hours continue to flow past, and Rudy finally succumbs to the pressure and makes a mental mistake while changing positions after SIX HOURS PLUS, by taking his hand off the idol while switching hands, as required. How chintzy is this? Couldn’t he get a little respect for his age and accomplishments? Wait … he’s one of the evil Tagi. Yeah, boot his ass.

Kelly wins her fifth straight challenge, including four ICs. One of the rumors proves to be true – a contestant wins five straight challenges. But NOBODY thought the contestant was Kelly. I guess it provides us with a fundamental rule for building a good alliance – if you pick people who are old and weak to be in your alliance, eventually, you will get to boot all of their sour faces and wrinkled butts into the next county.

After a little break to wash the mud off, Rudy packs for TC, and then walks there with his tribemates. The jurors look about the same as they did yesterday – Soozin proves that there are people who don’t clean up nice – and Grog keeps looking scragglier and scragglier every day. If they stayed another week, he would probably have gone native. Check that – the natives with the palm fronds look better than he does. Your average street person/wino would look at Grog and gain new self-respect, knowing that he hadn’t hit rock bottom yet … pass the ripple.

Jiffy drones on about how Roodie can only vote for Dicque and Dicque can only vote for Roodie, so Kells Bells is going to cast the only vote. But she can’t just be permitted to blurt it out, even though a 5-year-old could look at Rudy with all his stuff and Dicque empty-handed and say, “She’s going to boot the geezer!” No, we have to have her walk to the voting area, cast a vote and put it in the vote jar, then have Jiffy say a few words before he walks up to retrieve the jar, then have him carry the jar back down and open it up – surprise, Kelly wrote down “Jiffy”! Jiffy, the tribe has spoken, we’re sick of you, have a nice life … oops, sorry, that was my fantasy – she wrote down “Roooooooooooodie.” The SEAL has been broken … and he slips across to juryland. Only two left. Only one more night. Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.

Day 39: “Fat Naked Fag”

Kelly and Dicque decide to sleep with a roaring fire. They pack up every trace of Tagi’s existence on Pulau Tiga – the SuperPole 2000, the stools, the camp, everything – and ignite it. From across America, eBay merchants howl in pain as millions of dollars of worthless knick-knacks end up in a blazing pile of ash. For some reason, the smoky, worthless pile reminds me of Dicque.

Kelly confesses that she has been tormented by the actions that she took during the game. Hey, that’ll teach you, Kells – next time, don’t let the naked body keep you from looking for the “666” birthmark under Dicque’s thinning hair. When you sign on to be Satan’s pawn, your soul usually does get battered a little. Dicque hopes that burning the camp will help her find peace. Yeah, she looked peaceful as she was throwing Soo’s stuff into the fire screaming, “Die, Tagi bitch, die!” Good call, Dicque.

Kelly worries about the jury. Dicque tells her that it will just be fun. Good heavens, doesn’t he have an honest bone in his body? There may be just the two of them there … but didn’t he realize that every person in America was going to hear that? Didn’t he know that people would be picturing him cackling with glee inside as they watched the broadcast of it? Or did he know but just not care?

The walk to the final Tribal Council was on screen for so long that I thought they wanted to make sure that we saw and appreciated every step of it. We know MB must think it's important, because three Boobweiser commercials and a Target spot could have fit here, and for MB to pass up another ad...

Interspersed is footage of some of the jurors stating their opinions about how happy they are to get the game over with … and Sooozie saying that she’s got “both guns loaded” and is going to fire them “full blast.” Good, now maybe if someone could do something about finding the bricks that make her a few short of a load…

Finally, Dicque and Kells emerge from the jungle and enter TC for the last time. The jurors are sitting on rocks arranged in a prehistoric forum – sort of the way it must have looked when Neanderthal Man first danced (which was probably a way to shake the sand fleas off). Jiffy gives an opening speech about how, if this had been a contest for the biggest moron, Dirk would have won; for the best house builder, BB would have won; for the longest vomiting spell, Ramona; the biggest egocentric asshole, Grog; the best erotic fantasy, Cooleen … yada, yada, yada.

Then it’s time for each of the finalists to make an opening statement. Dicque says that he thinks the person who played the game the best should win, not the nicer person, and that he came in with a strategy and a plan … and every person on the jury was there because it was part of Dicque’s strategy to boot them at that time. Then he realizes that he just told Roody the truth about what happened in the last challenge, and so he immediately starts talking about his bond with Roody. Is Roody buying it? We see a shot of Roody. Looks like he needed No-Doz just to make it to TC. Dicque doesn’t have to worry.

Kelly says that the nicer person should win, not the person with the more conniving strategy, because the nicer person had to go along with that more conniving strategy or it wouldn’t have worked. Perhaps not the best move, as this causes Colleen to flash back and remember the circumstances when she and Gervase were booted because Kelly wouldn’t vote out Dicque. Nowhere does she make the single best argument: “Hey, I wouldn’t be here if I hadn’t won FIVE straight challenges. FIVE straight. Dicque won ONE and started a dance craze. I won FIVE. How can you play the game better than that?” But, considering that this is a woman whose working vocabulary more commonly includes the phrases, “Don’t fall in the river” and “Would you like fries with that?”, I guess she does OK.

Question time from the jurors. Going in to the finale, a certain member of this board (OK, me) wrote that, in a final between Kelly and Dicque, each was assured of three votes (Jenna, Colleen and Gervase for Kelly; the Tagi for Dicque) – the swing vote would be Grog. I also joking said that wouldn’t it be ironic if the difference in the final was the fact that Grog won immunity in E7, forcing the Tagi Alliance to boot Gretchen before him, although he was the original target, thus putting him on the jury? Some joke, huh?

Because they already know who they are going to vote for, most of the jurors ask simple questions. Sean tells Dicque how funny he found Dicque’s “fat naked fag” jokes and that he thinks a “fat naked fag with a million bucks” would be even funnier. The medical school from which Sean graduated starts reviewing its records to see if it has grounds for revoking his diploma. Grog asks the scintillating question, “Pick a number between one and ten.” Dicque picks 7; Kelly picks 3. The only real humor comes when Dicque, answering a question from Cooleen, picks “observation” as one of his outstanding qualities – and Cooleen, showing that we can lust after her brains as well as her body, immediately throws Dicque’s last-place showing in “Fallen Comrades” back at him. But there is no malice in it … until Soozie’s turn.

Soozin first praises (?) Dicque as openly arrogant and pompous. These are good traits? To Soozin, they are – because it means that Dicque isn’t trying to hide his true nature, unlike the evil, lying bitch Kelly. Soozin, to whom the truth is just an illusion, berates Kelly for lying (conveniently ignoring all the times we saw her lying, like when she denied that there was an alliance and when she told Jenna that they would be voting off the men next) and for losing the rowing challenge to Gervase (uh, Soozie, wasn’t that like a MONTH ago? And didn’t Kells just win FIVE STRAIGHT challenges to help boot your lying ass off the island?). But Soo isn’t finished addressing Kelly – and I don’t need to make up anything here, I’ll just give you what she really said (because I love inadvertent self-parody):

“My vote will go to Richard and I hope that is the one vote that makes you lose the money. If it's not, so be it. I'll shake your hand and I'll go on from here. But if I were ever to pass you along in life again and you were laying there dying of thirst, I would not give you a drink of water. I would let the vultures take you and do whatever they want with you with no ill regrets.

“I plead to the jury tonight to think a little bit about the island that we have been on. This island is pretty much full of only two things--snakes and rats. And in the end, with Mother Nature, we have Richard the snake, who knowingly went after prey; and Kelly, who turned into the rat that ran around like the rats do on this island, trying to run from the snakes. I feel we owe it to the island spirits that we have learned to come to know to let it be in the end the way Mother Nature intended it to be. For the snake to eat the rat.”

When this rampage is over, nobody has much to say. What is there to say? I think Rat Chef said it best (hi, Ratso!):
Rat Chef
DAW Level: "Network TV Show Guest Star"
08-24-00, 04:06 PM (EST)
21. "RE: Susan"
<<So Sue said what she felt, why does that make her a bitch? >>
The socially clueless and manner-challenged who live among us have a million variations on this phrase and they are becoming less inhibited about using them to justify rude and boorish behavior. My experience has been, in all of its permutations, no matter how hard you try, you can't make them understand the answer.
Yep, and that certainly applies to Soozie, who is overcome with pleasure despite having shown all of America that she is a vindictive, self-centered, worthless slimeball.

Dicque and Kells get a final chance to state their case. They both fumble it. Perry Mason they ain’t. On to the voting.

Gervase gets to vote first. Instead of making a statement about the vote, he hammers Soozin as “disgusting” and a "sore loser" in a long, articulate, impromptu statement. Who would have thought that Mr. UTR, Mr. Kidz-R-Us, would be the hero of the final episode?

But the voting goes as predicted: three ex-Pagongshow for Kelly, three ex-Baggies for Dicque (with Sean going on about the “fat naked fag with a million bucks” again), and then the Wild Man of Borneo shows up and everyone panics … oh, no, wait, it’s just Grog again, having let himself go to seed EVEN MORE. We see the mad gleam in his eye just before he votes (does anyone else think he might have located a naturally-occurring hallucinogenic substance while waiting for jury duty?), but we don’t see his vote.

Jiffy gets the vote jar. Dicque says that he’s having trouble breathing. So is most of North America, as people whisper sotto voce “Not Dicque. Not Dicque. Please God, not Dicque!”

The votes are 3-3. Jiffy pulls out the last vote. Dicque says, “I need water and oxygen.” Uh-oh. Evil Mark had told us that the winner asked for … water and oxygen. NOOOOOOOOOO!

Grog votes for Dicque. Dicque wins. Everyone comes down to congratulate Dicque and hug Kelly. Soozin lines up for a hug. Some people have no shame. Kelly, to her credit, skips over Soozin, who looks hurt by the snub. I’ll bet she never expected that Kelly would take it personally. And I was stunned too. What bad manners on Kelly’s part. I mean, all Sue said was that she wanted Kelly dead and that she would help kill Kelly if she could. And Kelly is upset about that? How dare her!

And, on that note, Survivor comes to an end. There is an hourlong reunion show that follows it, but the kindest thing that can be said about that show is that Bryant Gumball, the host, makes Jiffy look good. We learn that Grog voted for the person who came closest to the number 9, which was his number. Typically intelligent Brown grad.

A search for meaning? Do the bad guys always win in the end? Was Richard really even a bad guy? Those thoughts are left to others. My thoughts are focused on just two things. First, this show was painfully boring through 90 minutes and as riveting as the Super Bowl for the last 30. Second, to Island Heat, wherever you are, this is in memory of you.

Peace, love, and Survivor.

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