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'Survivor': Reluctantly, we say goodbye to the mullet

98164_D24327 Goodbye, my sweet mulleted friend: The beloved Shambo has at last been voted off the island of Samoa.

Sadly, I knew the day had to come eventually. It was pretty clear Shambo never had a shot at making it towards the end, and I thought this week's episode did a particularly poor job of hiding that she was going to be the one to be sent home. Too much attention was focused on her from the beginning of the episode, starting with the discussion about her unruly mop of hair.

"Shambo said she needed a haircut -- she should shave that whole head of hair off," Russell joked to the camera later. "That mullet went out in the '70s. She got peanuts, all kinds of different stuff falling out of there."

Russell's remarks were only the first sign that he was finally getting fed up with Sham. During the reward challenge -- which looked pretty great with the juicy lobsters and mosquito net-covered beds -- she did seem a bit annoying. 

"Jaison! Look! I'm in my little thing," she grinned, wrapping her mosquito net around her face as the three went to bed.

"Sometimes you're like a 45-year-old 7-year-old," Jaison sighed, clearly trying to be polite.

And Sham really got to Russell after the immunity challenge -- he doesn't usually wear his emotions on his sleeve, but he was so irked by Shambo that he couldn't help but vent to Mick about her bad breath and how he was using her "stupid butt" for votes.

At that point, I was pretty sure she was a goner. And I was surprised at how well she took the news about being voted off.

"Foa Foa is a loyal group, although I helped them get to where they are," she told the camera during her exit interview. "They were loyal and true to their tribe, as they should be. I think that's awesome."

98164_D20370  Geez, maybe she really is as endlessly positive as she appears to be. Maybe she'd even vote for Russell, were he to make it to the end. 

It was interesting to finally get a glimpse into Brett's personality, despite the fact that we're just one episode away from the finale. I know he has a reputation for being the sweet guy who flies under the radar, but I had no idea of the extent of his cheeriness. Reciting Bible verses with Natalie and suggesting he and the others who didn't win the reward challenge crack open some snails on the beach as the sun sets? How kumbaya.

At this point, it's seeming more and more likely that Brett could pull out a win in the remaining immunity challenges and coast to the final two, where I think he'd be a lock for a win. Do you think Natalie will end up flipping and aligning with Brett? As she reminded us this week, she's been so loyal to Russell from the get-go that it's difficult to imagine her flipping.

"Honestly, it's the hardest thing to balance your heart and your head," she admitted. "Hopefully my mind is clear enough to be thinking how to win the game."

Okay, guys, place your bets: Who do you think will win this season of "Survivor"? Who do you most want to win the game? Could Russell really end up making it until the end? And are you at all sad to see Shambo go?

And don't forget to check back here tomorrow for my post-show interview with none other than Shannon "Shambo" Waters herself.

--Amy Kaufman (follow me on Twitter @AmyKinLA)

Photo: (Top) Shannon "Shambo" Waters and her mullet were sent home on this week's episode of "Survivor." (Bottom) Brett Clouser won yet another immunity challenge, making him the only remaining member of Galu left in the game. Credit: CBS.

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Comments () | Archives (2)

I think you meant would Natalie flip and align with Brett above (since she's already aligned with Russell).

I don't see that happening. Whomever out of Brett or Mick doesn't win individual immunity next, they're gone. Despite Mr. Probst thinking Mick is the longest shot to win, I think Russell really fears him being in the final 3.

What would be interesting is if Mick/Brett (whichever is left standing) won the final immunity when it was down to the final 4. If there was ever a time to get rid of Russell, it would be right there. You'd have to think the jury would respect the game he played, perhaps the greatest Survivor ever.

And it's no longer the final 2...the last several Survivors have been 3 at the end.

My final 3: Russell, Jaison, Natalie
Another possibility: Brett, Natalie, Jaison. Brett wins hands down in that setup.

This should be one of the best season finales ever.

As for Shambo, wow. Her wackiness was only approached by Dave Ball. LOL Galu's biggest error was in their treatment of her before the merge. Had they be more restrained, no doubt Foa Foa would have been long gone (even Russell with his 3 hidden immunity idols) and we'd be talking about who on Galu could win.

The strength of Russell this season is offset a bit by the weakness of who made it to the final 6. Shambo, literally, was a knucklehead (until right at the end, maybe her chicken senses started tingling?) and never questioned any decision, was totally in the dark when Dave Ball was gone, and basically was next to useless in the immunity challanges.

Jaison? Didn't he nearly want to quit? He's rode Russell's coattails the whole time, and if you take him to the jury, he won't get a single vote. Guaranteed. Same thing, for such a physical guy, he's done almost nothing (except bowling) in the challenges.

Natalie? Ditto. Riding Russell's coattails definitely made her more money but again, aside from making a big move at the end, I can't see her getting more than 1 vote.

That brings me to Mick. His million dollar mistake was not flipping and getting rid of Russell vs. Monica in the previous episode. Had he done that, all of a sudden he's a major force in the game. Now, he's right with Brett on the chopping block.

Still...this will be known as the "Survivor of the blindsides".


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