Survivor: Tocantins - Tyson Apostol is a Bad Ass, and Other Clip Show Musings
Survivor: Tocantins aired a clip show last night, showing us never before seen footage from the first fifteen days the castaways spent in Brazil.  As far as clip shows go, I found the installment of Survivor last night to be quite good.  I have a lot more knowledge about the remaining castaways, and there was very little repeat footage.  There are a few contestants who I now like a lot more, a couple that I like considerably less.  But, most of all, I found my new favorite castaway.  Survivor: Tocantins will forever be known as the season of Tyson Apostol, the off-kilter pro-cyclist/kinda Mormon dude who is as dynamic and bizarre a personality as we've ever seen on Survivor.  The editors filled in a lot of gaps, and gave us insight into who a lot of these people are.  There are too many contestants at the beginning of the season to give all of them a fair shake, especially when the potential cast-offs have to be given so much screen time. 

Tyson is hilarious.  Before the episode, I was torn on Tyson, unsure of exactly who he was.  Now, I know that he's not really a Mormon, as was initially thought, and that he doesn't buy into Coach as an alliance partner. Tyson's using Coach as a shield.  He'll stay with Coach as long as it makes sense.  By tenuously aligning himself with Coach, he's giving himself a buffer – if their “alliance” is targeted, the others will certainly vote Coach off before Tyson, giving Tyson time to forge new alliances, which, given how likable he is, shouldn't be terribly difficult.

I always suspected that Sydney Wheeler wasn't your run-of-the-mill pretty face.  Her survival skills are as good as anyone's, if we are to believe the footage from last night, and she seems like a pretty good person to boot.  Depending on how the Exile alliance works out, she could go deep in the game. 

Stephen Fishbach is a klutz, but an agreeable one.  He also might be the most important figure in the game right now.  Even though he's got the enticing Exile alliance to look forward to, he doesn't appear opposed to the idea of voting Taj out of the game.  If he does, he could form a very solid alliance with Sydney, J.T., and Joe Dowdle.  After the merge, he could also bring Brendan Synnott into the fold. 

What I like about this season is that I have absolutely no idea what is going to happen.  No one is in a great spot, and the Exile alliance really complicates matters.  If Taj is the next person voted off (which, honestly, is doubtful), everything is up in the air. 

I like Brendan, but he's wrong – Survivor is not about meeting people and having a good time.  Only a person already worth millions of dollars would say something like that.  For instance, if I ever were to compete on Survivor my only objective would be to win a million dollars.  All of my energy would be focused on desperately attempting to win the game, and I suspect most every castaway feels exactly the same way. 

Benjamin Wade is unbearable.  He is the most obnoxious, arrogant, delusional gas bag in recent Survivor history.  But, he makes for good TV.  In a season full of mostly likable contestants, I kind of want Coach to stick around for awhile.  You can always use a good villain.

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