Survivor was awesome last night. (Spoiler alert for you DVR'ers.) It still amazes me that the show manages to stay fresh (although not necessarily the challenges) after all of these seasons of the same thing over and over again. This season, that freshness is thanks to Russell who has played a great game. (Last season, it was Coach who provided all of the entertainment. Or was that two seasons ago?) If Russell hadn't early on made such idiotic comments to the camera about how stupid the other players were, he could have been one of the all-time favorite survivors. Now, people are sort of reluctantly rooting for him because he's played so well and been the underdog, but I doubt anyone really likes him.
With an 8-4 advantage going into the merge, Galu should have had it made in the shade. Instead, they're populating the jury at the rate of one per episode. Russell tried for a relationship with Laura, but she scorned him. So he set up shop with Shambo and got rid of Laura last night. He played it perfectly. Instead of trying to control Shambo, he let her finally let it out that she's with Foa Foa. He then orchestrated the tie vote with the switcheroo after the tie. This forced his team to stay loyal (any one of them could have flipped and voted Natalie to guarantee they wouldn't go home on the stone grab) but also played on the growing paranoia in Galu. John the engineer bit, (avoiding the one in eight chance that he would draw the wrong stone) and flipped on Laura. This is interesting if you wait to the end to hear John.
With Shambo firmly in camp with Russell and the other Foa Foas, it's now five to four. Let's see if John tries to make Russell agree to vote out a Foa Foa as he semi-promised to do to get John to flip. I don't think it's going to happen; in fact, don't be surprised to see Russell target John for elimination based on the new 5-4 Foa Foa majority. No good deed goes unpunished.