Monday, March 19, 2007

The Haves and the Have-nots

It really isn't too surprising that two Mark Burnett productions are following the same theme this season. Both the Apprentice and Survivor are splitting their teams up into the haves and the have-nots, if you will.

The interesting thing is that it seems that this format isn't creating an insurmountable feat for the contestants on the Apprentice, while the Survivor have-nots (Ravu) can't overcome their deprivation. This week’s episode of the Apprentice was a turn around for Arrow Corp. Both Arrow and Kinetic have spent their time in the tents (the have not situation).

However, on Survivor, the unfortunate Ravu team hasn't won one challenge. They can't seem to get beyond their problems.

This seems like a strange difference. At first glance one might think that this is an anomaly. That it is just pure fluke that Arrow Corp. was ever able to make it past the first hurdle.

So you have to take into consideration the level or extremity of the deprivation. When you get a better night sleep and have just a little more food, you are going to do better in challenges. When the only difference between competitors is comfort of your sleeping arrangements it could be easier for the deprived team to defeat the other team. You know that your situation is surmountable, so you go forward and overtake the situation.

However, I think it goes deeper than just the level of deprivation. Ravu is still not the worst team to have played the game. Based on number of losses in a row, I believe that Stephenie and Bobby Jon's team in Survivor Palau had the worst record in the game.

When you look at the four teams (okay, two of them are technically tribes), you realize that there are two things that makes the Ravu tribe different from the rest. These characteristics were the same for the losing team of Palau.

The first problem that Ravu has is no cohesion. The team doesn't seem to work together. I get the strong feeling that they don't like each other very much, and that they are just putting up with one another. The strongest connections on the team are probably Anthony and Earl. And even at that suggestion, I am wondering if that is true.

I believe that James ("Rocky") is the person to blame for discontent on this team and I personally think he should be the one to go. But that just isn't going to happen, he is too strong in many ways.

When you look at the other teams, there is cohesion. The Moto tribe has an alliance of five between Alex, Boo, Lisi, Stacy, and Edgardo. Arrow Corp. has a strong relationship between Tim, James, Frank and Nicole. And Kinetic Corp. has a strong bond between the women, but especially between Angela, Kristine, and Heidi.

The other reason that Ravu Tribe has suffered is because there is no leadership. None of the players are willing to put their necks on the line and take their tribe to the top. Perhaps this is because Sylvia spoiled the leader role in that she wasn't a very good director of the tribe, nor was she a loved one.

People can overcome any situation. The have-nots in real life can over come. They need the strength to do so, but they also need good friends and good leadership. It's a simple fact of life.

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