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It’s reunion time! After this, we can all forget that Coach exists!We begin thing by congratulating JT, who is crying. Aww. Honestly, I’d freaking cry too. He’s a millionaire, how can you not cry? The only times when it is permissible to cry as an adult male are as follows: winning a million dollars and during an episode of Friday Night Lights. Not that I’ve ever done that.
“This is probably the happiest I’ve ever been in my life,” he says. Probst points out that JT’s a pretty popular character. “Everyone I’ve run into this week has said ‘Hate Coach, Love JT!” which is pretty much true. This marks the first time that America and I have ever been on the same page regarding reality show contestants. I still don’t forgive you for Rupert, but we’re making progress.
JT says that he actually didn’t tell a soul about anything, even his parents. “They think that I got fourth, at best!” You can tell that he’s just as happy to have surprised his family as he is to have won. He says that people ask him all the time whether Surviving is as hard as it looks, and that the answer is a resounding yes. He said he was hungrier than he’s ever been and really rethinking his decision by day eleven or twelve. As a cattle rancher, the guy always does have lots of available meat. Hungry? Just bite into a Holstein Cow!
What was it about Stephen that made him such a good ally? JT says that he thought he’d never align with Stephen, but then he started working harder than anyone else and really getting his hands dirty, and things just happened and they clicked. Probst points out that JT had an “inside mole” in Coach, because Coach was as fond of JT as everyone else was because JT is a vampire and Coach is easily glamoured. Coach told JT all about Timbira’s plans, and then JT would tell Stephen and they would take advantage. People in the audience begin laughing at Coach, and he sort of just shrugs his shoulders because what can you do at this point? “I’m the gift that keeps on giving!” he mutters. “He owes me a million dollars!” Tyson says from his position in eighth place. Love me, everyone!
Probst asks Stephen whether he really wouldn’t have taken JT. Stephen points out that he’s not sure what he would have done, but that it was pretty apparent that Debbie was seeking a specific answer from him and had already made up her mind, which was apparent to everyone but Debbie. “I figured it out when Debbie’s question for JT was ‘Isn’t it true that you’re the greatest person that ever existed?’” Debbie laughs in the background, because isn’t it cute how she cornered Stephen with her complete lack of self-awareness or logic? HATE.
Probst asks JT whether his feelings were hurt, and JT cops to acting a bit in order to get some jury votes. Everyone laughs, because isn’t JT cute? He can get away with anything! Don’t you just want to commit your savings to his Ponzi Scheme every time you see his smile?
JT makes a very good point about why he was not upset at Stephen: “It’s a lot different for me to take Stephen than it is for Stephen to take me.” He has the luxury of being JT, which he knows.
Brendan, what happened with Timbira? He mentions that they had “a lot of dysfunction” on their team, and they pretty much set themselves up for it. Erinn (who looks HOT) says that she jumped over to the Jalapao side because the other Timbiras made it clear to her that she was at the bottom of the totem pole, so she just wanted to put herself in the best situation possible. Also: she got the pleasure of voting out Tyson, Coach and Sierra.
Taj, why did no one ever talk about taking out JT? Well, Tyson did, but they nailed his ass to the wall before he could do anything about it. Is Taj really the best person to ask this question? Ask a Timbira, Probst. Hell, ask someone who wasn’t one of his closest allies. Taj says she just assumed that it was them to the end, so he never even came up for her.
And now, the creepiest moment of the finale. Probst tells JT that he has a present for him, and of course it is his tooth from that challenge where it got knocked out. That is creepy, Probst. Can’t you just see him lighting candles around, like, a tooth altar, with swatches of his clothes stolen from the set and pictures of JT ripped from various magazines all taped to the wall and shit?
Probst asks him again if he wants the tooth back. “It’s still completely useless to me, but I’m sure my mom might want it,” JT says, probably creeped the fuck out. Probst uses this as an excuse to go out into the audience and talk to JT’s mom, who is so, so nervous to be on camera. She says she’s very proud of him and that she told him for three years he could do this. JT has an encouraging mother? Insightful! Riveting! Apparently, she also filled out the application for the show for him, but don’t worry about asking her about that or anything, because that might be, you know, interesting.
Now that the creepy yearbook signing portion of the show is over, Probst returns to Taj. He says that she was one of the biggest surprises to him, because people absolutely love her. How is that a shock? Taj is awesome! Probst shows an old picture of SWV, and then he misidentifies her in the photo. Wow, that is embarrassing for him. Hey, show him a picture of some Asians and see if he can guess which one is Ken from last season!
I’m curious whether the other people on the show had any idea about the whole SWV thing while she was there, but we’re apparently not going to find that out either. She shows off all of the bites and scars on her body from the bugs in Brazil. “My skin was my greatest asset!” she says, half-kidding. Probst goes out into the audience to talk to Eddie George, who is wearing a “Team Taj” shirt. He says a lot more really nice things about his wife, and you can tell that they really are in love. Probst asks how Eddie was able to start a fire so quickly back at Exile Island, and Taj gives him a bit of good-natured ribbing from the stage about how he was a Royal Ranger. Could they be any more awesome?
Tyson. Montage of Tyson being naked and having one joke to tell, over and over again. Probst asks what the Mormons think about his “meanness” on the show: he says that the people that actually talk to him in public love him, but that there are probably people somewhere that don’t like him. “Great are always loved or hated. Jesus, for instance,” he says, smiling. Did Jesus have that terrible moustache too?
Sierra, what did it feel like to be hated by everyone, ever? Sierra says that it was hard (duh), and then she starts talking and talking and crying and makes no sense at all. I’m starting to understand why these people always looked at her funny while she spoke at Tribal Council: it’s because I have no idea what she’s saying, but she also won’t stop making that face. It’s the combination.
She talks about how she was the one who actually “slayed the dragon” by calling Coach out about lying, and the whole time stupid Debbie’s all hugging her and mugging for the camera in the shot, and it’s all pretty gross. And, to make things worse: time to talk to Coach!
Coach gets not one, but two montages of his insanity between commercial breaks. Probst asks Coach what about how people on the street react to him, and he says that the people who know him understand that he has an eccentric side, and he like “making his mark”. The whole time he speaks, the cameramen are catching all these live reaction shots of Erinn and Brendan rolling their eyes and laughing, which is pretty impressive. Real time disdain!
Probst asks Coach about the midget kidnapping story, which causes the cast to burst into fits of laughter. “Well, when you speak the truth, you have to tell it no matter what. There was something nagging about telling that story.” Probst says that he offered to give him a lie detector test, but that he curiously said no.
“What would that have proven?” Coach says. “Well, some would say that a lie detector test would prove whether you’re telling a lie or not,” Probst says with pretty perfect comic timing.
“Here’s the thing okay? You guys have handled my rep these last three months and in this case I did want to handle it myself,” Coach says. “Now we’ve all been blindsided up here at one time or another. You, my friend, my worthy adversary, have never been blindsided. I did take that lie detector test, and I have the sealed envelope here.”
Probst, half impressed and half dubious, tells Coach that they don’t have a lot of time to waste, so make with the envelope, Yappy. “Sure, open it, and pay attention, particularly to question number two.” Hmm, I wonder what if he knows what’s inside the sealed envelope? The suspense is killing me!
“Well, I will say that it looks like it was printed on something you could have in your office,” Probst says, dealing with this while off-script scenario pretty well, “but it has the guy’s name here, John Grogan and Associates, and there’s a phone number here; I’ll be calling him after the show.”
Probst starts reading the questions, which are hilarious:
Question one: Did you play the game of Survivor with utmost honor and integrity? GEE, I WONDER WHO WROTE THESE QUESTIONS.
Question two: On your trip down the Amazon (Probst starts cracking up here, barely able to continue), were you captured by natives? Yes.
People cheer, for some reason impressed by the results of this test. To clarify: polygraph tests don’t measure whether someone is telling the truth, they measure whether someone believes that they’re telling the truth. This proves nothing, especially if Coach has convinced himself, like so many liars can, that his lies are true.
Jeff asks the audience whether they believe the test, and the results are mixed at best. “Well, I believed you the whole time,” says Probst, who has all of a sudden become a comedy genius.
Hey, Coach who did you bring with you? He says that he brought his coaching staff and “a lady friend”. The “lady friend”s name is Melinda, and she already has a microphone in her hand. Is the Coach we saw on the show the guy you know, Melinda? “You only saw Coach, and not Ben Wade, who I know and love.”
“So, Dragon slayer doesn’t make it into the bedroom or does?” Probst says, because he’s feeling a little squirrely and this whole thing has already gone totally off the rails. “No actually, I slayed the dragon!” she says, and people are like half grossed out and half laughing. I am all the way grossed out.
Time for the stupid fan prize, which I hate. JT, Taj and (somehow) Sierra are the final three. Where’s the love for Stephen? Anyway, you’ll be shocked to find who wins: it’s JT! I know! Shocked, I’m sure. He has hypnotized America with his vampiric charm. JT whispers something to Stephen after he wins, but whatever it is remains a mystery, because even the internet does not have the answer yet.
And now, let’s blaze through all the boring people: Joe’s leg is fine and back to normal. (“Unfortunately, I am still attached to Joe. Why do you think I fall asleep so easily? HEY-O!” – Joe’s leg) Sydney says something, but I am too busy marveling at her hotness to notice it. Spencer says he had a lot of fun. Jerry thanks Jeebus for getting everyone back safely, which is pretty much the most boring thing you could say in this situation. I did not think it was possible to out-boring Joe, and yet? Here it is. Candace was in a commercial or something. Carolina says that it sucked getting voted out first, but at least she got on the show. And now: Sandy. Jeff has used up all his funny harassing Coach, so he’s just like ‘Hey, do something crazy!” She says that she was lucky to have gotten the chance to make a second first impression. She does not know that the second one sucked, too. And now, I can forget who all of you are!
When Probst gets back he’s wearing a candy necklace attached to a locket containing photos of Regis and Kelly. I cannot believe I just typed that sentence. Apparently it’s part of the Survivor Auction, which they can have this year because JT and Stephen forgot to burn down the camp.
And with that, the season is a wrap. Thanks again for hanging out with me all season, homies! I’ll see you all for Big Brother in a couple of months. If you want to hang out with me until then, I’m picking up blogging again in the meantime. I think I may try my hand at writing about something besides Coach for a couple of months.