Dan Barry, <EM>Survivor: Panama - Exile Island</EM> Dan Barry, Survivor: Panama - Exile Island
Survivor: Panama Exile Island The tribe splits were interesting, and I already love Cirie

she really hated being tossed in the "old" group! But Jeff Probst

told a lie right off the bat, touting Exile Island as having "a twist like never before." Sorry Jeff, does the name Janu ring a bell? Poor Misty, she should have just let Danielle take the fall for losing that reward challenge. Those skulls they smashed need to be patented as a stress-relief desk toy. Great, I think I just gave Mark Burnett an idea to make even more money. I did think Misty's strategy of lying about the idol would have worked, had the young women not kicked serious butt in that immunity challenge. And even though the Casaya tribe of older women lost, I think the younger-men's tribe is in the most trouble. Playing baseball instead of building a shelter? Austin seemed almost proud that none of them had a clue. Bobby is already the nickname master of the season; I cracked up when he called the older women the "Golden Girls" and the younger women the "Spice Girls." How long before snarky Shane starts burning twigs as substitute cigarettes? He is totally out of his element, but I think the rest of the older-men's tribe is in it for the long haul, especially the "flyboy" alliance of Terry and Dan. Between Aras ("feel the energy off my hands") and Courtney ("the turtle represents Mother Earth"), this first episode felt more like "Survivor: Burning Man Island" than Exile Island. Wonder if those two will be this season's hookup? I was dismayed at the ending hardworking Tina takes a minute to mourn the death of her 16-year-old son, and the others plot to oust her. Just what does Melinda add to the tribe, anyway? Have these women never watched Survivor? They should keep the workhorses around for strength and dump the dead weight first. Unless there is some kind of merger where they can get some numbers on their side, I don't think the Casaya Tribe is long for the game. Next week Shane has a nicotine-withdrawal-induced freak-out and wants to quit the game. In Burnett-inspired misdirection editing terms, that means he's probably making it to the final four.  Ken McGilvray