September 15 2006

Survivor Cook Islands Episode 1

Survivor Cook Islands has premiered and it was a doozy. Yes, the tribes are broken up over ethnic lines, get over it.

Aitutaki – Latin Tribe
Billy – 36, Heavy Metal Guitarist
Cecilia – 29, Technology Risk Consultant
Cristina – 35, Police Officer
J.P. – 30, Proffesional Volleyball Player
Ozzy – 25, Waiter

Manihiki – African-American Tribe
Nathan – 26, Retail Sales
Rebecca – 34, Make-Up Artist
Sekou – 45, Jazz Musician/Recoarding Artist
Stephanie – 35, Nursing Student
Sundra – 31, Actress

Puka Puka- Asian Tribe
Becky – 28, Attorney
Brad – 29, Fashion Director
Cao Boi – 42, …not sure what he does, even the CBS website gives a lame explanation
Jenny – 36, Real Estate Agent
Yul – 31, Management Consultant

Rarotonga – Caucasian Tribe
Adam – 28, Copier Sales
Candice – 23, Pre-Med Student
Jessica – 27, Performance Artist, Rollergirl
Jonathan – 44, Writer/Producer
Parvati – 23, Boxer/Waitress

The 20 Survivors start out on a sailing ship and upon hearing a bell ring, they have 2 minutes to salvage as much as they can from the ship and get on to their rafts. There’s some stupidity involving chickens, folks, their chickens, you’ll get one meal out of them, go for the stuff that will last you longer like the huge bunch of bananas! Silly Survivors. We are quickly informed of the “social experiment” aspect of the episode, everyone heads off, there is the usual first episode BS of “Where are you from…oh so-and-so is already stupid.” Whatever. I swear there is a “Survivor Contestants R’ Us” store sometimes with just row after row of the same people with different outer shells.

Anyway, nothing of major interest happened in the first part of the episode beyond setting up camps and Jessica letting the two chickens escape by accident. Oopsie. Cao Boi removed some “bad wind” from Brad’s head…you had to see it. Sekou took a lot of breaks, much to the annoyance of his tribe. The tribes then headed off to the joined reward/immunity challange.

The tribes must race to assemble a puzzle boat using seven braces, then paddle the boat out and retrieve fire from a bonfire floating on a raft in the ocean. Then they must paddle back to shore and carry the boat braces and fire with them. After putting together yet another puzzle, they must use the braces to create a ladder, climb to the top of a platform and light their tribe fire bale. The first three tribes to the top win flint and immunity. As a bonus the tribe that comes in first wins a fire kit, kindling, waterproof matches and kerosene.

Puka Puka came in first, then Aitutaki, and finally Rarotonga. Manihiki would be heading to tribal council, but in a twist I didn’t like, they got to choose someoen to go to Exile Island. Um…why does the losing tribe get to do such a powerful move? Anyway, Sekou and Nathan decided to send Jonathan to Exile Island, which is now or 2 nights, due to his “stealing” all the chickens on the boat. Jeff Probst, in his “Let me point this out to you” way, mentioned he found it interesting that the MEN of the tribe made the decesion. Sekou and Nathan saw the writing on the wall and tried to swing Stephannie, but it didn’t work, and out went Sekou.

While everyone seems to be focusing on the horrors of the racial segregation of the tribes, I found it fascinating how they almost immeditely started SUB-segregating. Puka Puka did it along not only did it along age lines (poor Cao Boi), but also amongst Asian heritage. Manihiki, while saying repetedly that they need to “represent”, divided in to 2 camps of men vs. women. Some folks called this “he most boring debut episode of any “Survivor” ever”, I couldn’t disagree more! I actually found it one of the most intriguing.

I personally think the media is reading WAY too much in to the segregation of the tribes such as in this story.

The Asian tribe won the first “Survivor: Cook Islands” challenge: puzzle solving. The black tribe came in last. Oops.

Oh no! Not…PUZZLE SOLVING! In the entire history of Survivor they’ve never had puzzle solving before! That must have been done that just to favor the Asians! *blank stare* Come on people, perhaps it is those of us here on the outside that are being the racists?

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