A number of potentially great merge players has been eliminated pre-jury. These people, like Hunter Ellis, Rob Mariano, Jeremy Collins, and Survivor 33’s most recent boot, Michaela Bradshaw, could’ve made the second half of their initial seasons (except for Jeremy) into something explosive had they been spared from betrayal.
These are our Survivor Caesars, betrayed and plotted against by their Brutuses.
But if there’s any takeaway from this, their heartbreaking eliminations were the end of their Survivor journey. With the exception of Season 4’s Ellis, all have returned to the game and did quite well. We hope the feisty and athletic Bradshaw would have the same fate.
Survivor Brutus Vs. Caesar
Brutus and Caesar stood on different sides yet they were good friends. Caesar, despite being the dictator he was, has shown Brutus mercy even after his betrayal. But traitors and power-hungry egomaniacs will always betray the people around them.
Jay and Michaela were on opposing alliances at the start of the game. Thanks to a tribe swap, they found each other working together to keep Millennials’ numbers strong. The straight-forward Bradshaw has never censored herself but proved a beast in challenges, hence Ikabula’s winning streak. The reserved and scheming Starrett was quiet; reliable in challenges and always calculating his moves. He was not one to resist the idea of voting out an ally if it meant strengthening his long-term game.
He did that once to Figgy and he did it again to Michaela.
The only difference this time is he succeeded.
We kinda had it coming
Michaela’s blindside shouldn’t have come as a surprise. History has proven that strong players almost always get betrayed by their allies. Michaela had a lot of airtime from the beginning and has had a good edit so far which led some viewers to think she could be getting a winner’s edit. But even if we believed she could be going deep this season, there’s this tiny devil voice at the back of our heads that’s saying the producers are trying to pull one on us, that she’s going to be eliminated soon.
We can’t really blame Jay from pulling a Brutus because Michaela is a formidable player. He’s right that if she gets to the merge, she’s absolutely going to kill it. It’s completely straight out of the Boston Rob Rulebook: turn on your alliance before they turn on you.
But it may not have been a good move for him, at least not yet.
Here’s why this impulsive move could hurt Jay’s game
It’s a perfect move at the merge because everyone will see that he’s orchestrated it but pre-merge, it screams Millennial betrayal. He’s already alienated Hannah. Once the merge comes, she’s ready to flip. Adam already has the two Gen Xers who are not really loyal to Chris and Sunday. Ken is tight with David who’s aligned with a Millennial. There’s also a chance that Michelle may not get back with the JayTay because, well, Taylor’s dumb and a smart player like Michelle would know that she’s at the bottom of that bro-lliance.
So that leaves him with Will. Brett’s loyalty may still be with Chris. And where Brett goes, Sunday goes.
A few episodes ago, I said Jay is smarter than how he looks and that’s right. But apparently, he’s not smart enough to consider the implications of that impulsive move.
I would like to think that ego played a huge part in the sudden shift of votes. Well there’s the paranoia about Michaela’s knowledge of the hidden immunity idol but she’s already established her loyalty to the old Vanua. If he’s too dumb to realize that, then he’ll soon be dumb enough again to make another hasty move that will cost him his game.
This is the problem with letting fear and ego influence your strategy. It keeps you from looking just a little bit far ahead. You’re only seeing the next curb but what you don’t see is that manhole a few inches from the corner, ready to swallow you whole.
Brutus aligned himself with former enemies because he was scared of losing authority in Republican Rome. That alliance helped him accomplish his short-term goal; he killed Caesar. But his allies soon turned on him and he ended up committing suicide after Caesar’s heir avenged his death.
Will Jay suffer the same fate? Will Hannah be Michaela’s Augustus?
The merge is coming up and it’s exciting to finally see which alliances will hold up.