Having played the game three times before Game Changers,
Cirie Fields has many feats to her name on Survivor
. Cirie is one of the best strategic minds in Survivor
to have never actually won the game. One of Cirie's most famous and warmly regarded moves was her part in the all-female alliance The Black Widow Brigade in Survivor: Micronesia
. While most of the cast of Survivor: Game Changers
is trying to change things up for this returning season, if Cirie wants to win she is going to have to repeat her past successes. If Cirie wants to win Survivor: Game Changers
she is going to need to form a new all-female alliance.
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Playing to Your Strengths
If Cirie formed a second all-female alliance in Game Changers it wouldn't quite be the second coming of the Black Widow Brigade. Through no effort of her own, the rest of the Survivor: Game Changers cast has done a pretty excellent job of eliminating the male contestants. There are not many more men to wipe out of the game. Cirie would still be wise to surround herself with other female players because Cirie's biggest Survivor weakness hasn't changed. Cirie can't win a challenge (that's not a puzzle) to save her life.
There have been plenty of dominant female challenge players on Survivor. Luckily for Cirie most of them aren't on Survirvor: Game Changers. Except for Andrea and Michaela, the physical female threats on Survivor: Game Changers are few and far between. The male section isn't that much better, especially now that Ozzy has been eliminated, but Cirie is going to have a much better chance to win Individual Immunity going up players like Debbie, Sierra and Aubry than she is facing Brad, Troyzan or Tai.
Having all-female alliance won't just benefit Cirie when it comes to competitions. The post-merge episode of Survivor: Game Changers proved that Cirie is at her best with interacting other women. There is something about Cirie that allows her to calmly and openly relate to other women on Survivor. Cirie is far from socially inept when it comes to interacting with the men, but there is a long history of the men of Survivor being threatened by Cirie. Cirie can make women trust her much easier than she can with men.
Utility to All-Star
The most compelling reason that Cirie might need an all-female alliance to win though is that her strongest allies are already women. With Andrea, Aubry and Michaela, Cirie has put together a nice core four for herself. They might not have the numbers but they have everything else they need to win the game: strategy, strength and loyalty. Best of all, Cirie isn't just a cog in the army with this alliance. She is pretty much the leading force.
In her previous seasons, Cirie's real downfall was that she was overshadowed by more aggressive players. Parvati was the de facto leader of The Black Widow Brigade and it's no coincidence that she ended up winning the season in which it was formed. So far Cirie has positioned herself as the Parvati of Game Changers. Andrea is acting as her right-hand woman, the same role that Amanda filled for Parvati. Cirie also has Aubry, who is a little shaky on the alliance but otherwise accepting. This is very similar to how Cirie herself treated Parvati in Micronesia. Rounding things out is Michaela, who doesn't quite fit the mold of any Black Widow member but she is totally devoted to Cirie.
Cirie isn't just the de facto leader because she is the oldest. Cirie has formed solid and real connections with the women she is currently aligned with in the game, especially with Michaela. Michaela is public enemy number one but Michaela is a beast in competitions. If Cirie can build a strong enough alliance around her relationship with Michaela, that's all she would need to get to the end of the game. If Cirie can get Micahela and herself to the final five or four contestants in the game, Michaela can win Immunity. It is almost unimaginable that Micahela will take anyone but Cirie to Final Tribal Council at that point. Cirie doesn't need to put all her eggs in the Micahela basket however. If she can keep working with Andrea or even Aubry she could build enough trust and affection with them as well.
Cirie is playing a similar game in Survivor: Game Changers to her past outings but she is playing it very, very well. It's risky because it hasn't worked for Cirie yet but there is enough evidence to suggest that if she stays the course Game Changers could finally be Cirie's winning year.
But what do you think? Do you agree? Should Cirie form another all-female alliance or try something new? Is she on the way to winning the game or are her days numbered?