This blog post contains Survivor spoilers.
CBS has started putting HD versions of Survivor Heroes vs Villains on Youtube, which I think is good because it allows me to watch the season from Australia. Watching the season on CBS does not work because, for some reason, CBS does not allow non-US citizens to watch their shows, which to me makes no sense because CBS is reducing the exposure of their shows and thereby are reducing potential advertising revenue.
The contestants in this season of Survivor come from previous seasons. They are divided into two tribes: Heroes and Villains. The Heroes tribe are players who are thought to play the game with integrity and honor while the Villains are amoral, deceptive, backstabbing, and so forth. Clearly everyone has a different opinion on what constitutes a hero and a villain. In my opinion, Cerie Fields, in the Heroes tribe, is a villain. In terms of physical strength she is very weak but has shown through her history of playing Survivor that she is good at staying in the game for a long time by making alliances with other weak players and voting off stronger players. I also think that another Heroes tribe member, Amanda Kimmel, is a villain. I also thought it was surprising that Coach (real name is Benjamin Wade and also known as the Dragon Slayer) was put on the Villains tribe since he makes a big deal about playing the game with honor and integrity. Nevertheless, the name of a tribe or team makes little difference. There is no doubt that members of the Heroes tribe will have to resort to villain behavior.
Episode 2 of Survivor Heroes vs Villains showed that leadership is important. The Villains tribe yet again won the immunity challenge because their leader Rob barked out orders and everyone followed. In the Heroes tribe, J.T. the leader in charge of the challenge, barked out orders but his subordinates dissented and argued back. Based on my experience at work and in life in general that strong leadership (or even dictatorship) is efficient. Last year at work I was put in a team of four people to do a project. The team decided that we didn't need a leader. What ended up happening was that nobody did much work because nobody knew who was responsible for what. Without a leader telling them what to do, they resorted to doing nothing. Hours was spent in meetings just talking and debating what needed to be done. Eventually the work was completed but the quality of the work was quite bad. Luckily for us the project was not that important for the organisation. Next time I am in a similar situation, at the very beginning I will step up and say, "Guys, we need to elect a team leader. Does anyone want to volunteer?" If there are multiple candidates, then I suggest a vote. If there is only one person who wants to be leader, that person is leader. This even works for non-work situations. For example, during a Friday night when my friends and I are walking around in the city trying to figure out where we should eat, some people prefer one place and other people prefer another place. The arguments and debating can go on forever and nothing can be done. At times I have said, "Let's elect a leader who will decide where we will go."
Anyway, back to Survivor. After the Heroes tribe lost the immunity challenge, they decided to vote off Stephenie, the person who dissented. Even though she dissented I believe that they should have voted off Cerie instead since she is clearly the weakest in terms of physical strength. Stephanie's mistake with dissenting can be fixed quickly but Cerie's physical weakness cannot be quickly fixed.
Update 21 March 2010: Based on a secret scene I watched, even though JT was leading the Heroes in the immunity challenge, Tom claimed that he didn't know what he was doing and asked for help, after which Stephanie decided to step up and help.