Survivor: Philippines – Surprisingly Open & Honest Gameplay

CBS’s Survivor may be in its 25th season, but the iconic reality show is still able to entertain and keep players and viewers guessing when it comes to game play.Survivor Philippines Season 25 Logo

In every season of Survivor there are always a handful of players who approach the game with honesty and integrity in mind. Others make the distinction between the ‘reality show’ and ‘real life’ and do or say whatever they need to make it to the end. And throughout the 24 seasons we’ve seen thus far, both strategies have been rewarded, which is why there isn’t a ‘right’ way to play the game.

But never in all of the seasons of Survivor that I’ve watched,* have I ever seen such an open game in terms of verbal bluntness, honesty, visible alliances, and knowledge of the owners’ of the hidden immunity idol. It’s an interesting way to play the game for sure, and Survivor: Philippines is really benefiting from it.

Outwit Outplay Outlast – Outspoken?

Lisa’s entire play thus far best exemplifies this scattered yet strategic open policy. She’s stayed true to her alliances and when switching she’s put it all out in the open, yet she’s still unreliable in a vote because you have to wonder if she is making decisions based on her head or her heart.CBS Survivor Season 25

And how insane yet mellow was the tribal council (25×9) in which Malcolm and Abi both admitted to having a now not-so-secret Hidden Immunity Idol?

Even in the last episode (25×12) when Carter walked up on Skupin and Malcolm talking about him they freely admitted that he was the topic of conversation and he left so they could carry on.

Mind you, I don’t think this makes the game any easier because honesty doesn’t always translate into niceness (i.e. Abi) and even if you are aware of all of the variables, it doesn’t mean you can control them. Just ask any of the players who were blindsided.

And things are obviously only going to become more complicated as the current controlling alliance of Malcolm, Denise, Lisa, and Skupin is only to the final four. Plus the Hidden Immunity Idol will be out of play and of course the perpetual wildcard that is Abi is still on the island and capable of stirring up trouble.

So yeah, these last few episodes should be a wild ride. Will Malcolm and Denise stick together and make it to the end after surviving the decimation of the Matsing tribe? Will Lisa start playing the game and leave personal connections behind? Will everyone realize that Malcolm has a really good shot of winning if he makes it to the end? Do you think Abi has a ticket to the final three because of her unlikability?

Let me know what you think. Am I the only one who feels that Survivor is still capable of producing an enjoyable season of reality TV?

*Disclaimer: I haven’t seen all 25 seasons of Survivor, but I have seen most of them.

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