Did Angela Just Emerge as the Dark Horse of 'Survivor: Ghost Island'?

Did Angela Just Emerge as the Dark Horse of 'Survivor: Ghost Island'?

The merge episode of Survivor: Ghost Island didn't play out in the usual way. The merge usually is about highlighting the biggest players of the season and showing off the real threats starting to emerge. Instead the merge was all about the final showdown between Domenick and Chris, which Chris lost. Yet with Chris out of the way, Survivor: Ghost Island was able to open up in the second post-merge episode. Lavita finally felt like a merged tribe and the season gave way to a surprising new power player, Angela.

The Survivor Gossip Queen

Viewers have had their own share of annoyances with the Chris and Domenick feud. Some of Chris' buffoonery was TV gold but he wore out his welcome very quickly. As aggravating as Chris (and Domenick) became for viewers, no one was more negatively impacted than Angela. Angela didn't even like Chris but she was somehow saddled with being his strongest ally by the rest of the cast. Angela didn't help herself much, but she was still stuck under Chris' heel, with no one to go to. With Chris gone though, Angela became a completely different person and player. 

Angela came alive with Chris out of the picture. Before the embers had settled on Chris' snuffed torch Angela was scheming and rumor-mongering all about the beach. It was some shockingly aggressive gameplay from a castaway who has done little to seem like a threat. Yet perhaps the most surprising thing was that it worked. 

It's because Angela ran about the island like a crazy person that the target was put onto Michael's back. Michael probably would've come up on the chopping block eventually. He looks, acts and sounds too much like a perfect Survivor player to stay under the radar for long. Yet because Angela went about telling everyone her private conversation with Michael, he became public enemy number one. 

Angela almost single-handedly organized Michael's elimination from Survivor: Ghost Island ... except he had an Idol which ruined everyone's plans. Still, Angela went from a complete non-entity to a serious contender in one short episode. 

Playing with Fire

However, just because Angela played the game hard, doesn't mean she played it smartly. To Angela's credit, she never lied about Michael. She just took a conversation that he thought was private and made it public to stir the pot. Yet there's hardly a more dangerous position on Survivor than someone who spreads information around like wildfire. 

Angela did bring up Michael's "misdeeds" of wanting to target Wendell and Domenick in a casual way. It put all the blame on Michael and none on herself. Yet she's still balancing on a knife's edge. If Angela continues causing chaos she's going to get a reputation of being untrustworthy and no one will want to work with her or she'll be viewed as a threat and be blindsided or targeted herself. 

Also, spreading rumors isn't much of a sustainable strategy. When the flow of information runs out, so does the value of the gameplay. Angela winning an Individual Immunity is a step in the right direction, but she needs to start doing even more active things. She just can't react to the information she's getting from other castaways. Angela needs to start creating her own information and gameplay. She obviously has the energy and drive to do it, something that wasn't clear before. Yet in a game where so many other castaways have advantages and having been playing the game so much harder, for so much longer, Angela has an uphill battle. 

An under-the-radar type of Survivor game, like Angela's, is successful in a season like Ghost Island with so many big personalities. Wendell, Domenick, Michael and even Laurel and Kellyn are going to be duking it out and trying to outmaneuver for a long time. It's a good idea to stay on the fringes like Angela. However, her post-Chris rise might be far too little, too late to win. 

But what do you think? Does Angela have a chance to win Ghost island? Is the potential winner someone else, like Donathan, who's playing from the sidelines? Will one of the big personalities actually be able to back things up with a win? 

Survivor: Ghost Island airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on CBS.

(Image courtesy of CBS)

Tags: Survivor

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