Survivor: One World – Episode 11 – “Never Say Die”
Okay I give up. Survivor: One World was a season with an interesting premise and a fresh cast but this episode was just too much stupidity for me to handle.
It’s been a somewhat entertaining season in its early stages, particularly because of the stupidity of some of the contestants but nows it gotten ridiculous. Unless the editing of the show has been pushed to the extremes to unfairly favour two people, the only contestants that appeared to be playing a strategic game at this stage are Kim and Troyzan. And Kim has the alliance of every single woman in the game and Troyzan has no one. Where does that leave us?
Since the tribes merged into a single team, Kim seemed to turn the men against one another with breath-taking ease. “That guy wants to vote you out,” “Oh does he now? Fine! I’ll vote him out then!” The guys squabbled and voted each other out while the outcast girls who are so obviously at the bottom of the pecking order in their alliance plod along taking instruction from Kim. It was established in episode two that all the guys were spineless morons when they agreed to vote out someone poor within their own tribe despite having won an immunity challenge just because a prejudiced brat told them so. The girls are proving they’re no better.
Kat threw a tantrum this episode because she feels no one recognizes her strategic input (she has no strategic input and at the end of the episode still did what Kim told her to do). Alicia, a special ed teacher who has bullied contestants on the show, referred to her students as having ‘an IQ of zero.’ Perhaps no one has been more infuriating than Christina, the girl at the very bottom of the pecking order. She’s been told she’s bottom. She’s been bullied and laughed at by Alicia for it. At a recent challenge, the teams reminded her of it again when they unanimously voted her as the least deserving contestant. And yet…she continues to vote alongside Kim. WHY THE HELL ISN’T ANYONE TRYING TO WIN THE GAME?
At this stage, it appears to be a given that Kim will stroll home with the million dollars. She deserves it. But it hasn’t made for very entertaining viewing.
Veep – Episode Two – “Frozen Yoghurt”
It only took a couple of episodes but I’m definitely sold on this show. It’s pretty everything I want. The style of humour is a blend of Curb Your Enthusiasm and In The Thick Of It. JLD is absolutely nailing it as a desperate vice president who has the most high profile unimportant job in the world. She spends time with colleagues agonizing over what flavour of yoghurt she should have at a photo op, or what food is even appropriate to be photographed with. ‘I don’t want to eat anything phallic like a hotdog. Oops. We learnt from that one.’
This episode saw the supporting cast begin to come into their own and its great to see the build up of the rivalry between the various interns at the White House.
Happily, HBO have already ordered a ten episode second season.
WWE Xtreme Rules 2012
The WWE followed up Wrestlemania with a surprisingly solid ‘B’ show in the form of Xtreme Rules. The show had an entirely forgettable undercard (as in, I’ve literally forgotten it already) but it was headlined by two solid World title matches and the first match for Brock Lesnar in a WWE ring in eight years.
Daniel Bryan and Sheamus competed in an entertaining two out of three falls match that basically gave us what we wanted at Wrestlemania. The match was a technically sound wrestling exhibition with a boisterous crowd and nearly half an hour of ring time. Bryan was sold as a credible threat and surely he must now be seen in the back office as one of the biggest prospects they have for the future. He is massively over with the crowd, can work the mic exceptionally well and has the talent and versatility to wrestle a good match with just about anyone. To his credit, Sheamus was good also and is gaining momentum as champion. This match appeared to bring the feud to an end rather conclusively so it will be interesting to see where both men go from here. A feud with Alberto Del Rio appears to be on the cards for Sheamus.
Hometown hero CM Punk took on Chris Jericho in a Chicago Street Fight. The feud between these two guys can probably be best described as ‘underwhelming.’ This is the third time these two have met if you count their brief encounter at this year’s Elimination Chamber. While the matches have been decent, they haven’t been the all out classics that you might hope for. Also, the feud has had a rather heavy-handed storyline involving CM Punk’s family which I don’t think anyone was really looking for. Punk’s sister and mother were ringside for this match. They have weird American names. Jayleen and RayLisa. Christ.
The crowd was surprisingly flat during this match, particularly in the first half, which made the match seem a tad duller than expected. The match definitely picked up though with the introduction of some ECW-esque weapons and a rather sweet table bump. Punk’s win also really establishes him at the top of the roster. He has now held the title for seven months, an unprescedented length of time in this day and age.
The main event was a surprisingly strong match between Brock Lesnar and John Cena. I don’t anyone really expected much from Lesnar having spent so long away from the ring and having had a debilitating illness for nearly a year. He came back in decent shape and absolutely destroyed John Cena, utilizing a worked MMA style that matched his wardrobe. For the first time in years, we saw blood shed as Cena was busted open less than a minute into the match. It was quite a striking visual to see Lesnar dismantly Cena, chain his feet and hang him upside down from the ring pole.
Just when you thought we might finally see Cena meet his equal and possible garner some sympathy from his detractors, he hulked up and won the match with an Attitude Adjustment onto the steel steps. It was a mind-boggling finish to an otherwise fantastic match. It seems crazy to have Lesnar lose his first match back. Especially since he wasn’t a once-off special attraction but had signed a deal to work a full year. Not only that, Cena ended the night on the mic appearing to mark his intention to go on hiatus to shoot more movies or whatever. Surely the obvious decision here was to send Cena out on his back and build up his return later in the year? There was some puzzling booking here to say the least.
Overall though, all three main event matches were fantastic.