There are many personalities on The Challenge, but Kam just established herself as a master strategist this season. She became the power team with Kayleigh and then used her Power Vote to sway the votes of the other teams. In the end, every team voted for a different team. Before the Power Vote, all nine teams had one vote cast against them allowing Kam to effectively decide who would go into elimination. To do this, she warned other teams she wanted to vote in Brad & Kyle or Joss & Sylvia. By selecting two powerful team, this ensured no one else would want to send them into elimination because the Armageddon allows the selected team to compete against another team who voted them in.
Rarely do we see someone implement a strategic play like this. Politicking on The Challenge usually consists of forming allies or “polidicking.” We generally don’t see someone sway a vote simply by using the powers built into the structure of the game. This was solid mental warfare, and better than what we’ve seen in the past. Prior example are people like Wes on Battle of the Exes 2 who made allies and made a clear targets, allowing a sense of protection for his allies.Or Devin on Vendettas, who tried to break down Bananas by unleashing a secret prior to elimination. Kam had to earn the power that gave her so much influence.
Kam posted a video on YouTube explaining her choice. Warning: it’s interesting but really long. And she screams the whole time.
As she states, the gameplay we saw was actually plan B. Plan A was for the majority of the house to band together and overpower Kam’s vote. In this scenario she’d actually provide safety to Brad & Kyle and Joss & Sylvia. Plan B involved the house burning votes until Kam’s vote was the only one that mattered. This is the scenario we saw, and the one that made Kam look more powerful.
It’s safe to say this strategy was really, really good. It is certainly one of the best we’ve ever seen… until The Armageddon. Yes, the Mercenaries came and saved Jozea & Da’Vonne, but this isn’t want I’m referring to. The fact that Kam & Kayleigh used this power to send Faith & Angela into elimination makes the whole strategy seem worthless. She did build trust with Brad & Kyle and Joss & Sylvia, but she could have done that by simply agreeing to work with them and have the majority of the house vote in Faith & Angela. She played a game where she was the king and everyone else was just a pawn, and she could have taken a stab at a really powerful team. In fact, keeping Faith & Angela would have been a smart move for her game. That a team she’d likely want to compete against if she wound up in elimination.
Despite the poor outcome, she instilled a lot of fear in her competition. She showed how powerful she could be, she just didn’t need to do all of this to send in a rookie team.