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Episode 13: "The Sole Survivor" (Air date: May 19th, 2002; filmed December 18-20, 2001)

Note: Survivornews.net has called Neleh and Vee as the final two, with Vee winning. We agree. Click here to read their explanation. Read on below for how we see this happening.

Our Picks:
F4 IC: Kathy, gives to Vecepia
F4 Boot: Leaning Paschal, in a tie
F3 IC: Neleh
F3 Boot: Kathy
Second place: Neleh
Sole Survivor: Vecepia

If you haven't read Survivor-Central's hilarious "preview" of the final four "Fallen Comrades" challenge (written by Mario Lanza), you should.

Here's this week's misdirection from CBS:
Episode 13: "The Sole Survivor" 
If you're desperate for recycled footage from past shows, view the web preview here.
What CBS says What we think it means What actually happened
(1) It's down to Paschal, Neleh, Vecepia, and Kathy: Last-minute deals, surprise twists of fate, two Immunity Challenges, and two Tribal Councils later, two of these castaways will face a Jury of seven and be asked to answer for their actions on the island. (1) Last-minute deals, eh? Could Kathy finally figure out that it takes more than one vote to top Neleh and Paschal's joint vote?  Twists of fate: tie vote at F4? (1) Tie vote, purple rock, end of Pappy.
(2) Bonds of friendship and feelings of betrayal surface during a heated final Tribal Council.  (2) Shockingly, Pappy will stick with Neleh.  Perhaps not so surprisingly, he will vote against Sean. (2) Umm, yeah, whatever.

F4 IC - Fallen Comrades
Inside Edition has shown that the F4 Immunity Challenge will once again be Fallen Comrades, same as in S3.  This tests memory and social skills.  Vee might be at a disadvantage, since most of the questions will involve details about the lives of people everyone on the F4 has encountered.  So questions about the Rotu Four might be unfairly tipped in the other three's favor.  Since Neleh and Paschal seem to have spent most of their time talking to each other, Kathy would appear to be the favorite here, given her performance in the Ep12 IC.  On the other hand, Vee has been quietly observing for the whole series, so she could win this outright.

F4 Boot - Paschal
Vecepia is obviously highly vulnerable here, unless she wins immunity, or cuts some deal with Kathy to protect her.  Kathy has to realize that her only hope for the final two is to have Vee be immune, and to force Neleh and Paschal either to vote against Kathy herself, or to vote against each other.  If Vee wins immunity, all well and good.  If Kathy wins, she could give it to Vee.  So, either way, Vee is immune.  It's also possible that Kathy and Vee have had a hidden alliance since John's boot.  That would explain a lot, including: (1) Tammy's inability to reruit Sean and Vee; (2) Robert's inability to recruit Kathy; (3) the way Vee kept her mouth mostly shut while Sean ranted and raved about not being in an alliance with her; (4) Kathy's refusal to accept Sean's alliance in exchange for immunity.  If this is revealed at the F4 Tribal Council (or F3), it will make Paschal and Neleh look quite bad in the eyes of the jury.

The 2-2 tie would finally give us the unknown consequences we've been waiting for all season, and would result in someone getting surprised by a twist of fate.  Watcher from votedoff.tv, who correctly spoiled the Ep11 RC in its entirety, claims that a tie will indeed occur.  If so, Paschal is the obvious target.  Neleh has enough flaws to be acceptable (but not ideal) as an F2 opponent, but nobody wants to face Pappy, as Kathy has already said.  It's possible that, like Sean, he might volunteer to be booted if a tie occurred (or Vee is immune), to help Neleh advance.  Pappy got a lot of negative editing in Episode 12, and appeared physically and mentally spent.  Stick a fork in him.  Of course, since it's a tie, Kathy could go here, too.  But we think it's more likely Paschal does.

F3 IC - Endurance?
The holding-the-idol challenge has served the show well as an F3 immunity challenge in S1 and S3.  Why change now?  It's possible some other challenge along similar lines could be used here, but the idea is that the winner really has to want it.  Any of the three women could potentially win here.  If there's any edge, as the youngest and least susceptible to age-related amplification of fatigue, Neleh seems like a slight favorite here.  For a Neleh-Vee final two, it seems most likely that Neleh pulls it off, since Vee or Kathy would each probably take the other to the final two, and leave Neleh behind.

F3 Boot - Kathy
Tribal/alliance bonds and rewarding of "nice people" usually hold the most weight here.  If Paschal and Neleh were both still around, they almost assuredly would be the final two, if either wins immunity.  Since this possibility has been played up fairly extensively, we're confident it doesn't happen.  If Neleh wins, she has to choose between the two women who booted Paschal at the previous TC.  Her seemingly safest choice is Vee, since the jury is filled with all of Neleh's old Love Tribe buddies.  Payback for Kathy's betrayal will be third place, even though booting Paschal was Kathy's only option.

How to separate these options?  John has sworn that he would exact vengeance for his boot come jury vote time, and Neleh was the one who convinced Pappy to join her in toppling John's regime.  Tammy commented post-show about how smug Neleh was once she was in power.  Robert repeatedly said he was now on the strongest alliance.  These signs point to Neleh being present, and voted against.  Suggesting strong, intense Kathy ends up right where strong, intense Lex did: third place.

F2: Jury vote
Working against Neleh is the final immunity win, the perception that she rode Paschal's coattails, and her last-minute betrayal of John and the Rotu Four.
Working against Vee is her original tribe (from which only Sean remains on the jury), suggestions from Tammy and Robert that she didn't pull her weight around camp, and a reputation as someone who flip-flopped on alliances whenever convenient for her purposes.

On the plus side, Neleh has her charm working for her (unless Sean has sufficiently gotten his distrust across to the jury).

Vee seems to get along with about everyone, at least a little bit, has not ruffled any feathers, and got to the F2 despite being from the losingest tribe in Survivor history.  And the biggest sign?  In her interview with Sean on Friday, when she knew who won, Rosie O'Donnell failed to ask him a single question about Vee, despite the fact that she was his closest ally, and they spent all 36 days on the island together.  In fact, pretty much everyone has been silent on the subject of Vee in recent weeks.  Why?  Because they can't say much without saying too much.  Go Vee.

Here's how a Vee-Neleh vote might shake out:
- John: Votes for Vee.  Sure, he may have gotten a tattoo with Neleh, but this is for the game, and she was the tipping point in his boot.

- Zoe: Tough call, but probably Vee.  If John is clear in his revenge questioning, may go for Vee instead.

- Tammy: Another tough call.  Saw Vee as lazy, and Neleh as gloating once she gained power.  Slight edge Neleh.

- Robert: Will probably vote with John, for Vee.  Robert has suggested that the Rotu Four may vote as a block.

- Sean: Vee.  Rock solid.

- Paschal: Neleh.  Equally solid.

- Kathy: Vee.  Kathy and Vee both got as far as they did largely under their own power. Not so Neleh.  Easy choice for Kathy, especially if Neleh booted her.

Sole survivor:  Could go either way if the Rotu Four do not vote together, but looks like a distinct Vee-ward tilt.  Probably 6-1 or 5-2.  Go Vee.


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