Survivor: China - Goodnight, Kind Grave Digger
Survivor: China took a turn for the better last night, even though my favorite castaway was voted off.  It's a sobering confession, but I knew that eliminating James Clement was good for the season when, after last night's tribal council, I wasn't angry.  Usually, when one of my favorites is voted off Survivor, I get unspeakably upset.  Household objects are thrown, remote controls broken, havoc wreaked – it can get ugly.  But, despite James being my favorite Survivor since Yau-Man Chan, last night's Survivor result got me excited for the rest of the season.  Amanda expertly chose her spot to make a big move, making her the overwhelming favorite to win a million dollars.

The beauty of Amanda Kimmel's orchestrated blindsiding of James was that she risked nothing in doing so.  If it backfires, Todd goes home and Amanda can stick close with Courtney and Denise and maybe even James, depending upon his level of anger.  Now that it worked, the immunity idols are gone and the biggest threat to anyone is vanquished.  Erik and Peih-Gee are next in line to go, and in a final four with Todd, Courtney and Denise I love Amanda's chances.  If she can take either Courtney or Denise to the final two, then the million dollars should be hers.

James not using one of his idols last night was an epic blunder, but one I kind of understand.  If he holds on to both idols for one more tribal council, he assures himself a spot in the final four.  He was too trusting and ran into some inspired back stabbing from his tribe mates.  It's tough to swallow but, as we saw at the end of the episode, all James could do was tip his cap. 

Peih-Gee could have really shaken up the game last night if she took the information she received from Amanda and told James he was in trouble.  If James got on board with Peih-Gee, then they could've gotten rid of Todd and maybe brought James into an alliance with her and Erik.  But, you can't blame her.  If you're outnumbered and then told you're safe for at least one more week, it's probably best not to rock the boat. 

Denise finally got some screen time last night to show how cool of a person she is.  It's now impossible not to like Denise.  If she reaches the final two, she'll be tough to vote against.  She won't deserve a victory in a tactical sense, but how do you not vote for the incredibly sweet and kind lunch lady?

Final thought: James not winning one individual immunity challenge is one of the biggest upsets in Survivor history. 

-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV Senior Writer 
(Image Courtesy of CBS)