When the theme for Survivor 20 was revealed that it would be heroes vs villains, one name that automatically popped into fans' minds as a lock for the latter group was Jerri Manthey. The veteran of the Australian Outback and All Stars was set to embark on a third try for the elusive million dollars. The question that I asked myself after learning she was on the villains tribe was ths: is Jerri Manthey really a villain or was she made out to be worse than really was? Let me get to my point.
In examining Jerri's history as a so-called villains in the game of Survivor, let's venture back to Australia where the title first took. The very first moments where we saw Jerri in a less than civil manner was in her exchanges with Keith Famie; the noted gourmet chef who somehow couldn't master making rice. In my opinion, Keith was a blowhard who was incredibly stubborn and annoying to listen to. So the fact that he and Jerri butted heads was not a surprise and this occured a few times throughout the game. Snippy responses to each other and sarcsm was the norm in their convos but nothing outrageous or show stopping. There have been scores of better fights in Survivor history from Alicia wagging a finger in Kimmi's face to Sandra bellowing obscenities at Jon in Pearl Islands. This was nothing like that. And just to show that Jerri was not out of order in going at Keith, the normally docile Colby went at him hard at the end of the game for wasting rice. Clearly the man had difficulty getting along with others.
Once All Stars rolled around, we got anothre dose of Jerri who started off by butting heads with Rupert about how to construct the shelter. This was when Rupert had the brainless idea of digging down into the sand in order to build the shelter which was argued strongly against by Jerri who worried about it flooding in a heavy rain. Rupert persisted however after an argument between the two and sure enough a deluge hit the beach and the shelter flooded. Jerri was right and vindicated.
Later on in the game she aligned with Lex who stabbed her in the back in his boneheaded move to save Amber for Boston Rob.
And that brings us to now with Jerri participating in H VS V and being placed on the villains tribe. So far through half the game, Jerri has had a minor run in with Parvati and turned her back on Boston Rob in a power play. Nothing more and nothing less. Also nothing controversial by any means. No blowups or rants. She has been on her best behavior so far through the game and actually has a shot at winning due to her aligning with Russell.
So in my opinion, this notion that Jerri is a villainous bitch is way overdone. There have been many much worse than her and true villains in every sense of the word. Jerri Manthey is a very intense competitor who always gives it her all in challenges which has earned my respect. I also believe she is very loyal and could be trusted. She was all set to go to the end of Australia with Amber and Colby but she was backstabbed by the latter. The same thing happened in All Stars when she was loyal to Lex until he stabbed her in the back. Now in H VS V she is going along with Russell for the time being. She never made an oath with Boston Rob so don't give me that. The one thing you can kill her on is that she can be overly dramatic such as when she went on that ridiculous rant during the reunion show on All Stars. Other than that I think Jerri has always been a solid player who deserves more respect that she gets. She is one of the all time players and I truly believe that she has a chance to win if she gets to the final three. I think people can respect her for her dilligence and the fact she keeps coming back for more. There is something to be said for that and ultimately I don't believe she is much of a villain at all.
What do you think? Is Jerri a villain and am I missing the boat? Or have the producers made her out to be something she is not?