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Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Beauty and Brawn Beat Out Brains

Survivor

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Beauty and Brawn Beat Out Brains

Originally posted 02/27/2014 11:10AM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can.

"There is a difference between book smarts and common sense smarts. It seems like none of my group has any common sense. Not a one of them."
– Russell Hantz, Survivor: Samoa

Is the Brains tribe the worst tribe ever?

These ersatz eggheads don't just lose challenges. They lose challenges spectacularly in jaw-dropping fiascos. They don't just make a bad shelter. They spend all day building a structure that can't support a single person. They don't just play Survivor badly. They set a new benchmark in how not to play the game.

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Credit: Art by Erik Reichenbach
Stephen Fishbach Ranks Beauty, Brains, Brawn Teams on Survivor: Cagayan

Survivor

UpdatePosted 02/26/2014 07:00PM

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Ranking the Teams on Survivor: Cagayan

Originally posted 02/26/2014 02:45PM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can.

"This is like the cool kids lunch table back in high school."
– Eddie Fox, Survivor: Caramoan

Survivor is like high school. The jocks ostracize the nerds. The hotties coast on big boobs and winning smiles. Cliques form quickly. If you don't maintain your finger on the pulse of what's "in," you could be "out," and voted "off."

Starting Wednesday on Survivor: Cagayan, these high school factions will fight for island dominance in tribes of Brains, Brawn and Beauty. Usually the cliques face off within a tribe. Now they'll fight as tribes.

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Credit: Erik Reichenbach
Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Tyson Keeps His Cool | Survivor

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Tyson Keeps His Cool

Originally posted 12/12/2013 11:30AM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. This is his first season illustrating episodes of the show for PEOPLE.com. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can

"Putting up with the people is the survival part, not putting up with the elements."
– Rudy Boesch, Survivor: All Stars

Well, that was kind of … obvious? Maybe last week's on-the-rocks Survivor bender left the show with a hangover, because Wednesday night, a grouchy, tetchy episode led to a predictable end.

Hayden and Ciera tattled on Tyson for saying mean things about mommy Monica. All they accomplished was hurting poor Monica's frayed feelings. The vets stuck together, and sent Hayden to Redemption Island.

The newbies' timing couldn't have been worse. Just three days earlier, Tyson put his life on the line in the Great Rock Draw of '13, so Monica was feeling particularly grateful. Plus, Hayden never made clear how blindly following him was superior to blindly following Tyson.



Here's the thing about smack talk – it's as much a part of Survivor as Jeff Probst's hat. If you're not analyzing and ridiculing your competitors, you're not holding up your part of the bargain for being on television. When you're on the island, the producers ask you to comment on the other castaways. You expect your tribe mates are also commenting on you.

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Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Contestants Draw Rocks in Shocking Tribal Council

Survivor

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Contestants Draw Rocks in Jaw-Dropping Tribal Council

Originally posted 12/05/2013 10:30AM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can.

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Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: It's Hard to Know Whom to Trust | Stephen Fishbach

Survivor

UpdatePosted 11/28/2013 12:25PM

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: It's Hard to Know Whom to Trust

Originally posted 11/28/2013 11:45AM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can.

"Once you flip, you're a weaker number, because you've shown that you can't be trusted in your alliance."
Lisa Whelchel, Survivor: The Philippines

Survivor is a game of big moves. Strategists know that if you want to make a compelling case to the jury, you can't just coast to the end. You have to take control.

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Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Exhaustion Leads to Wrong Moves

Celebrity Blog

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Exhaustion Leads to Wrong Moves

Originally posted 11/14/2013 09:45AM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic-book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can.

"I hope … you don't cast your vote based on that you got your feelings hurt. I think it's poor sportsmanship, and I don't think that it relays who the true Survivor is. It just shows that you got your feelings hurt."
– Tina Wesson, winner, Survivor: The Australian Outback

How epic is the Survivor gross-food challenge?

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Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS
How to Take Down Survivor's Baskauskas Brothers

Celebrity Blog

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: How to Take Down the Baskauskas Brothers

Originally posted 10/31/2013 01:30PM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can.

"The one time I thought I was safe? The day I went home."
– Rupert Boneham, Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains

Something's rotten on Survivor.

You got a whiff of it when Aras went off by himself to meditate, leaving the rest of the tribe behind to gossip and plot. You could sniff it when Vytas smirked in self-satisfaction at Tribal Council.

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Credit: CBS (2)
Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: New Tribes Mean New Strategies

Celebrity Blog

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: New Tribes Mean New Strategies

Originally posted 10/24/2013 12:10PM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can.

"In Survivor, I kinda learned, you be who you are, and you try not to be afraid of it."
– Kat Edorsson, Survivor: One World

Ah, the dreaded swap. For torturous weeks you've been doggedly laying the groundwork for a long-term Survivor game plan. You built alliances. You won challenges. You voted out threats. You have a clear path to the endgame. Then all your plans are scuttled by the random draw of a new buff. Oh Survivor! Oh, life!

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Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS; Timothy Kuratek/CBS
Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: This Game Isn't About Trust

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: This Game Isn't About Trust

Originally posted 10/17/2013 10:00AM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can

"I'm out here playing for one million dollars. Never trust me.
– Russell Hantz, Survivor: Samoa

You knew the second that Laura Morett started talking about how much she trusted Aras, she was in trouble. "Aras is someone that I completely, explicitly trust in this game," she said. I don't think I felt that way about anybody, ever, in my 39 days of Survivor – and I honestly doubted Laura M. felt so certain about Aras, either. More likely, she was trying to convince herself that everything was hunky dory. Deep down, she knew she was in danger.

The episode started at Tadhana, where Vytas was confronting trust issues of his own. Caleb shocked everyone with his vote flip: Vytas didn't trust the guy anymore, but he did need to woo him back to the dwindling 5 Guys alliance – which was down to just three guys. It was almost embarrassing, the way the once-Machiavellian Vytas extolled the virtues of Caleb's perfectly exfoliated skin. Caleb basked in the praise – but did he believe it?

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Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS(2)
Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Caleb Takes Down King Culpepper

Celebrity Blog

Stephen Fishbach's Survivor Blog: Caleb Takes Down King Culpepper

Originally posted 10/10/2013 11:15AM

Stephen Fishbach was the runner-up on Survivor: Tocantins and has been blogging about Survivor strategy for PEOPLE since 2009. Follow him on Twitter @stephenfishbach. Erik Reichenbach is a Survivor fan-turned-favorite, a comic book author and artist. He placed fifth on both Survivor: Micronesia and Survivor: Caramoan. Follow him on Twitter @BloodyAmer1can

"I played a lousy strategy game, because I didn't hide well."
– Tom Westman, Survivor: Palau

The King is dead. Last night on Survivor: Blood vs. Water, Caleb Bankston unseated tribe monarch Brad Culpepper. At Tribal Council, Culpepper hinted that Caleb could be a possible target since he had no connections on the other tribe. In response, Caleb announced, "I'm gonna write Brad's name down" – and encouraged his allies to do the same.

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