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Author Topic: M&M's FTW  (Read 1441 times)
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Mr. E of Yonago, Japan
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« on: December 16, 2012, 01:44:17 PM »

After reading Strategy1st's excellent prediction piece, I've decided to make my own call on this season's outcome: Malcolm win's against anyone, and if Malcolm's no longer around, then I'll go with Mike Skupin.

That said, there's no way I could be disappointed in a win by any of these Final Four. While I wasn't too worried about Malcolm and Denise completely getting wiped out on Matsing, there was still a chance that one or both of them could have gotten booted after they were doled out to Kalabaw and Tandang.  And Lisa and Skupin were initially targets for boots early on.

It's been posited that Skupin has been extremely unliked, especially by the original members of Tandang, so that would seem to give the two women a chance to jump into the winner's seat if Malcolm doesn't win Final Immunity, but I pick Skupin in such a scenario because if such a blindside came about, it would represent a betrayal by Denise of her strongest ally and personal code of keeping 'worthy' players around. Tandang has the most members on the jury, but I'm not sure all of their votes will automatically go to Lisa over Skupin. (Abi will obviously not be voting for Denise, although she has repeatedly said that neither Lisa or Mike can beat Malcolm and/or Denise.) I do like that fact that Lisa obviously was open to making moves to get ahead in the game, but the fact that NONE of those moves came to fruition will count against her. And Lisa's moves didn't involve creating new alliances from among the minority players, which is why jury members end up there. (It was Malcolm who initiated the F4 deal with Skupin and Lisa, and Penner who unwittingly sunk his own and Lisa's best chance to argue that they made at least one move that rocked the game.) Denise has played a 'Sophie' type game, and her seeming resistance to deviate from the script might play against her. Even with her 'don't rock the boat' gameplay, Malcolm has, it seems to me, managed to let Denise take credit for twisting the knife in the backs of the other bootees on their way to the jury, while maintaining an air of overall likeability.

If Malcolm is a JT avatar, and Denise channels Sophie, then perhaps Skupin can be seen as an embodiment of Coach? He's been edited to show a credible path to the winner's circle, and yet as Strategy1st has pointed out, no one seems afraid to take him along to the finals at all. It might qualify as cruel and unusual punishment for TPTB to pull the rug out from under the feet of a returnee two season's in a row, but there is definitely a chance it could happen. (In which case, I'll go along with Lisa pulling off an upset, since she has definitely established some good relationships with many of the jury members.)

If Malcolm is not in the mix, then I think the vote could be a lot closer, but I still think Skupin might pull it out. But my cynical heart says: Malcolm will win Final Immunity and waltz into the victory. What I'd hate to see would be for Malcolm lose and guilt Denise into voting for a fire-making tie-breaker, where Denise could argue that she didn't 'betray' her strongest ally, and then have Malcolm beat out Lisa for the finals. The outcome would be the same, only it'd be even more frustrating for Lisa to go out that way. I'm assuming that Skupin would have the necklace in such a scenario, but if Denise has it, she and Malcolm might still decide to keep Skupin as a more obvious goat? But in that case, Skupin would probably toss Lisa under the bus, knowing that he himself would get her vote, but only cementing his negative impression with the jury, in my opinion. Therefore, in the event of a final two, I'll go ahead and call the win for a woman, either Denise or Lisa (again, assuming Malcolm has already been shown the door). I don't see Denise ever being able to throw Malcolm under the bus, but Malcolm might very well do so to her. If Malcolm takes both Mike and Lisa to the end, then the vote might not be as great in Malcolm's favour, but he'd still win. (But there is a slight incentive for Malcolm to keep Denise in the game as well, as that simply guarantees him another gullible, I mean guilt-able, vote to get to Final Two, should it be needed.)

I'm posting very late in the game, as it were, but I hope to hear from other forum members, pre-Finale, if possible! This has been a predictable season, but for the most part an enjoyable one, I think.
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Mr. E of Yonago, Japan recommends:

Survivor
by Douglas Copeland, in Darwin's Bastards, Zsyzsi Gartner, editor
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