Minute-by-minute updates from the final showMSNBC
Updated: 2:30 p.m. ET May 10, 2004• May 9, 2004| 7:45 p.m. ET
Blogging the "Survivor" finale
"Survivor All-Stars" (renamed from "All-Star Survivor" due to unfortunate initials) was an interesting experiment. I hated Boston Rob in his original season, but I've developed a grudging respect for him this season. And who knew that meek little Amber would settle herself into an alliance/romantic relationship that could earn her a million bucks?
Before the show starts, I'd just like to give my predictions for the various final two pairings.
If it's Rob/Amber, Amber takes it.
If it's Rob/Rupert, Rupert takes it.
Anyone vs Jenna goes to whoever's not Jenna
Amber/Rupert goes to Rupert.
If Rob and Amber are as smart as they've been playing, they'll get rid of Rupert right away, as if either of them ends up in a final two with Jenna, they are more deserving of the win (though jury members Lex and Big Tom might have something to say about that). Then again, sending someone to the final two with you thinking you can read the jury's mind has failed regularly on this show, so what do I know?
8:00: Ah, memories. That hilarious helicopter escort. Big Tom, you Mush Mouth. You were undeniably quotable and easily duped. Ah, Hatch! Remember when he said he could start the fire without even trying, and everyone online started spreading rumors that he had smuggled matches onto the island by concealing them on his person? Never happened, apparently. Oh, I forgot all about Rob C, the first victim of Boston Rob. Not that anyone figured anything out after that. I wonder if Boston Rob's style will be copied by future "Survivor" players. Get yourself a girlfriend, win a batch of challenges, and make secret alliances with everybody and roll all the way home. Except that strategy requires you have someone as boneheaded as Lex playing against you.
8:04: Colby! Ethan! We hardly knew ye. And the Amber-Rob romance. I read a really weird Jeff Probst interview where he just gushed about how romantic it was. I think Jeff's been on the island too long, myself.
8:06: "You guys didn't really believe that, did ya?" Boston Rob was 100% right on that one. If Lex is stupid enough to keep a competitor's girlfriend, who's definitely never going to vote for Lex over Rob, then Lex deserves to be gone, daddy, gone.
8:07: Is it just me, or do they always give the Survivors the world's ugliest cars? I bet they sell them as soon as they get home.
8:08: Lex, you are no cooler with that Mohawk. In fact, it makes you look incredibly desperate. I can't believe I actually kinda want Boston Rob to win. We shall see. Did this show really start back in the cold and snow of Super Bowl Sunday, and it's just ending now? It's been a long four months.
8:13: Rupert, don't sound so pleased you voted Big Tom off, you ee-jit. You just left yourself with an unbeatable team of two and . . . Jenna.
8:15: Oh great, they brought them treats. Bacon, eggs, pancakes, strawberries? MIMOSAS? I thought this season was supposed to be tough -- remember all CBS's big words about giving them no food and no fire? As my friend Paige said so memorably, what's next, cable?
8:17: "Somebody is leaving tonight." Yeah, bet it's you, Rupe.
8:19: Here's the deal: Watch them all four going through the obstacle course-maze thing. Boston Rob wants it more than anyone else. He plunges under the wood pile, while Rupert approaches the rope course cautiously.
8:22: And, it's Amber! Did Boston Rob throw that one? I don't think so, because he could technically get ousted. If Rob and Amber vote for Rupert and Rupert and Jenna for Rob...it's a tie. If Rupert and Jenna smarten up, that is, which I doubt.
8:23: Heh, the Tylenol Push Through the Pain award. If only they knew how much of an office joke that's become. "Hey, did Carla get all those papers collated?" "Yeah, and I nominated her for the Tylenol Push Through the Pain award."
8:27: And just when you thought reality-TV season was over...here come "Big Brother" and "Amazing Race." "TAR" has got to be about the smartest and most addictive reality show out there. "Big Brother" ...not so much.
8:30: Oh Rupert, your overconfidence and trust in Jenna (and in your own superiority) might bring you down. And I love how they're all confident that if there's a tie, it goes to that rock-pulling thing. What if it doesn't? What if a tie gets decided by the jury? How fun would that be?
8:34: I think this is the only time in the entire game so far that Boston Rob has been scared -- except for when he thought Amber was going to be axed by Lex.
8:36: Jenna, that was pretty damn dumb. I don't really see her logic there at all. She can't beat Rob. She can't beat Amber. She was going to the final three anyway. She could have made it to the final two with Rupert, and now she's going to be gone in a flash. Start writing out that check to Boston Rob or Amber, I have a feeling they'll be sharing it anyway. Oh, and some casting director is getting a bonus check personally signed by Mark Burnett for finding and casting Rupert, despite his egomania.
8:41: Jenna, you have no game. Oh, I get it: The rock thing wasn't just between the two tied people, it was between all three non-immunities? So she got herself to the final three by voting out Rupert. Still, she's not exactly Einstein.
8:42: And now on to the so-stupid "remember all the ousted players while wearing bizarre body paint" segment of the show. This is a good time for a bathroom break, if you're in need. This is so not the emotional crescendo Mark Burnett thinks it is. It's about as lame as the Tylenol Push Through the Pain award.
8:43: "You're never going to be back here again." Is that Probst's way of saying "we're never going to invite y'all back again, 'cause All-Stars really didn't get the ratings we were aiming for"?
8:45: Tina. Nothing to say about her. Rudy. Love him! Rob C. Hardly as great as he thought. Hatch. Excellently entertaining except for the bit with Sue. Sue. No comment. Colby. I didn't hate him before this season. Ethan. Ditto. You have the million already, who cares who writes your name down? Jerri. The sacrificial lamb. Maybe she can do "Surreal Life 3." Lex. You did it to yourself, you hyperactive tattooed kokopelli (thanks, Sars). Kathy. Ugh. Alicia. I missed the finger-waving. Shii Ann. It wasn't the numbers, Shii Ann. Tom. Mrughch surhbche wrushc! (Sorry, I felt I should speak to Tom in Tom-ese.) Rupert. See Colby and Ethan, only maybe not so much.
8:54: Always the final challenge comes down to endurance and balance. I guess it's their way of evening the challenge out among the ***es -- it doesn't rely on speed or strength, but it's kinda dull to watch. And the women usually do very well in this kind of challenge. Boston Rob's arm is already shaking.
8:57: It's not trust, Jeff. There's no way these two are splitting at this time, though that would be hilarious. This whole conversation between them is hilarious. D'oh! Amber loses her mind, and immunity. Send Jenna home to her twins now. It's Boston Rob and Amber in the final two, and it's all about whether the jury wants to reward the better player (Rob) or the one who didn't tick them off (Amber). And either way, if they end up together, they'll both be enjoying the fruits of a million dollars. This makes the game kinda anticlimactic, no?
9:02: Heh, the Saturn commercial where shopping carts and balls keep smashing into the car's doors is actually kinda funny. They're remaking "Helter Skelter"? I don't get it. Just rerun the old one.
9:05: It's just not working for me, them trying to make us think Rob's not going to take Amber to the final two. Just not working.
9:07: Let's see the replay, Jeff. What if Jenna's foot really didn't move?
9:09: Yeah, Amber, if it was you, there is no decision to be made because you would beat Rob in a walk.
9:11: Wow, that was dull. A Boston Rob-Amber final two. Let's hope for a Lex rant to rival Sue Hawk in season one, to bring some form of excitement back to this game.
9:18: Please, no bow-chicka-bow-bow music for Amber and Rob's romantic night alone. Also: They're GONNA hate us? They're GONNA? I think Rob has a problem with verb tenses. Try: They DO hate us.
9:19: No one else around, yep, except for eight million cameramen, lighting guys, that dude with the boom mike and the rest of the crew. Pretty romantic there.
9:21: Heh, Rob's still got it. That was a pretty funny Rupert dig. "Who would have believed I could catch fish?"
9:22: They must give the competitors a secret bonus for every time they mention that "Outwit. Outplay. Outlast." slogan, because I swear this is the second time it's been said so far in this episode.
9:24: Whoa! Third time! Probst just said the slogan too.
9:25: Kathy looks like Cathy Lee Crosby all of a sudden.
9:26: See, there is just no suspense to this at all. No matter how mean the jury is to them, this will be over soon and they'll essentially be sharing the million. It's just not that exciting.
9:27: Hey, who invited Tammy Faye Bakker to the jury? Is that . . . Jenna? Is that eyeliner, or did she fall into a charred log? (Credit for that line goes to the late great "Mystery Science Theater.")
9:32: Lex, you look psycho and you make about as much sense. You did not answer the call of a "friend in need." You made a stupid strategy move that a fourth grader could have advised you against, and it's not Rob or Amber's fault that you were so dumb. Hey, isn't he going to ask them a question? They just have to sit there and not respond to win a million? How hard is that?
9:34: Whoa, Big Tom tries to bring back the overalls-over-no-shirt look that was carried off so well in the 1980s by Dexy's Midnight Runners.
9:35: Rob's no dummy. Referencing Lex's speech is his attempt to make Lex think that he cares and he's sorry, which he's totally not. He's grasping for Lex's vote here, and Lex is just dumb enough to fall for it.
9:36: Let's see ... step on Kathy, give up the million dollars. Step on Kathy, give up the million. Kathy is so stepped upon.
9:37: Amber claims she "fought like hell" when she had to change tribes. You so did not. Rob fought for you and Lex stupidly helped him. You did nothing.
9:38: Rob sucks up to Rupert calling him a "man of your word." That's also smart. Rupert is eating this up with a spoon.
9:44: Go, Big Tom! Oh wait, what I thought was going to be a literate speech turned into a typical Big Tom mumble with something about goats and castration. He wants to castrate Rob? Or Amber? I cannot follow him. How does this man run his farm? How does he go to the store and order goat feed, how do the salespeople even understand him and not send him 50 tons of toad feed? Still, he got hurt the most in this, because he still, after two seasons, does not understand how to play the game. I don't get his "No hard feelings" and I don't get his "I fell for it once, not this time." Does that mean he's voting for Amber? Either way, he's voting for someone who betrayed him, although it's always possible they betrayed him because they literally could not understand him.
9:53: Amber's trying to suck up to the jury now, but she's not doing as good a job as Rob. What an uneventful finale, and a pathetic jury. No one even came close to Sue Hawk's rat-snake speech. No one was hard to listen to, and no one made Rob or Amber squirm.
9:54: Here's my new prediction, at 9:54 p.m. ET. Rob should win, and even though most of the jury likes Amber better, I think he'll take it. See if I'm right...
9:56: OK, forget Tammy Faye, Jenna looks much more like Mariah Carey with all that Max Factor.
9:57: Kathy is so proud of herself for voting for Rob. She is also so delusional that they have a "tight friendship." Please.
9:59: Heh, Jeff heads off to the helicopter in his khakis and favorite blue shirt. They just love helicopters on reality shows -- remember the TrumpCopter on the "Apprentice" finale. These guys thought Boston Rob was bad, they don't know from bad until they've played a game with Omarosa. Hey, I sense a spin-off.
10:00: Is Probst crazy, hanging from the side of the helicopter over New York City? I hope they've got good insurance, especially since he's jaywalking across the street. Man, look at all the people. How many of them are relatives of the cast? Because really, you could not pay me to go to this live finale.
10:02: Great. Amber hearts Rob. And they're B.F.F., except when they're J.K.! Is she 25 or five? Also, Rob got rid of the porn movie mustache, and I barely recognize him.
10:04: He's going to propose? This is the big secret? Well, I guess it kind of was. Whoa. CBS must be loving this. I guess 39 days is all it takes to find the love of your life. But will the marriage last as long as Britney's? So is the rule about sharing the million kaput now? They're shared millionaires now anyway.
10:05: The audience screamed and cheered that Rob asked Amber's parents permission to propose. Because a woman is the property of her parents until she weds, of course -- no, sorry, but I couldn't resist.
10:08: Amber! Well, my last-minute prediction was wrong, but really again, it so does not matter. They're splitting the money anyway, assuming the engagement is for real. And hey, I'm giving it a better chance than all of the relationships founded on "The Bachelor" or "The Bachelorette," which isn't saying much.
10:09: "With the exception of Rudy, everyone's mad at everyone!" Is it just me, or is Probst relishing those words? Oh, if only they were true. Who won, again? I already forgot. You know how on soap operas, fans will sometimes refer to a top couple by one word combining their two names, like "Bridge" for "Brooke and Ridge"? So I guess I can just refer to Rob and Amber as Ramber (or maybe Bramber.) And congratulations, Ramber. You won big, you found each other, you seem honestly and truly happy, and now let us never speak of "Survivor All-Stars again."