Survivor: One World is finally over. The person I picked from day one to win it all did just that. Kim beat out Sabrina and Chelsea in the finals to win the million dollars and then to top it off, she also won the fan favorite vote and got another $100,000! So congratulations Kim. You deserved that win. You dominated the season and the outcome felt right.
Unfortunately, I must say this season does not rank among my favorites. Kim, Chelsea, Sabrina, and Christina, the final four girls are all sweet, normal, nice people. They all got along well. They all worked together well. They all knew who the final three were going to be. Kim chose to sit next to her two closest friends who she knew might take votes from her, but who she also knew she would be okay seeing them win if she couldn’t. It is a respectable way to play it, but it does NOT make for drama.
The finale episode was pretty uneventful. Kim dominated the challenges. She won both of the last two challenges to get herself to the final three and didn’t even have to use her hidden immunity idol to do it. She also remained the queen strategist as she had throughout the season with each of the contestants lobbying her, knowing that the ultimate decision of who went home at each tribal council lay squarely in her hands.
So out first at the final five was Alicia. Kim decided to go with her friends instead of her jury goats and got rid of Alicia. Alicia actually seemed like she wasn’t bitter at the start of her final words. She said she wasn’t a sore loser and congratulated Kim for fooling her, but then she still went on to say that Christina sucked, so don’t worry she’s still the same Alicia.
Then the final four do a Fallen Comrades tribute to each of their voted off cast mates from the season. Though some people don’t like this tradition, I actually do. I think it’s fun to get to hear from each of the people from the season and it reminds you who was actually on so when you see them on the reunion show, you’re not like, “who the heck is that?” Apparently in some past seasons where it looked the tribute had not been done, it actually had, but it got cut for far more interesting footage of drama. But as I said, this finale was gravely lacking in drama and therefore there was plenty of time for it to get shown.
Then we have the final immunity challenge. I was actually disappointed to see it wasn’t an endurance challenge. If I didn’t already know that these challenges were planned out months in advance, I would have said that the producers might not have wanted an endurance challenge because it’s a test of will and if Christina knew she was going, she would have fought harder to win. But that’s not the case. They planned this weird bowl stacking challenge months earlier. I miss the final endurance challenge when it doesn’t happen, though. And Kim won, again.
Christina finds out she’s the one to go and it’s actually pretty disappointing that she doesn’t do anything drastic to try to pit the girls against one another and try to stay, but that’s sort of how most of this cast has been. They all just kind of take it. If Kim says it, that’s how it is. I wish Christina would have fought, but in actuality, there’s probably nothing she could have done, except tell Kim she definitely would NOT be voting for her to win. Apparently, from behind the scenes articles, Sabrina had told Kim there was no way she was getting her vote if Sabrina was on the jury. So then, predictably, Christina gets voted off.
Final tribal is always one of my favorite things. I know I have criticized bitter juries in the past, but I actually enjoy the bitterness during the final questions. I don’t like soft ball questions. I want drama! I want fire! I want tears. Well, at least there were plenty of tears.
The girls give their opening statements and Chelsea asks to stand (awkward) and then gives a speech which is basically a “vote for Kim” speech rather than a “vote for me” speech. It was very bizarre. Did she get confused? Or just brainwashed by Kim like everyone else? At least Sabrina lobbied for herself, though unfortunately she didn’t have that much to stay because she didn’t do well in challenges and didn’t do much around camp.
Jonas is up first and he tells the girls they have to answer his questions “yes, Master Jonas” and then he cracks up. I loved seeing Jonas’s personality come out. He then tells Chelsea she’s the hottest girl out there. Christina asks Chelsea, “why do you hate people?” Chelsea insists she’s not a cold-hearted bitch in real life. Having met her, I can tell you that’s true. She’s a sweetheart.
Michael asks Kim for the definition of a blindside. Then asks her if she’s perfected the art of the blindside. Leif asks why he was voted out. Alicia gets up and tells Kim that Kim would be “sh*tting bricks” if Alicia was up there with her. Alicia has a completely delusional view of herself and her abilities and her position in the game. I wish Jeff has asked the jurors who would have voted for Alicia if she had been in the finals with Kim. I don’t think it would have been as many people as Alicia thinks it would have been.
I thought one of the most amazing parts of the final tribal was Kat’s redemption. The whole time on the jury she seemed bitter. She seemed angry. She seemed like someone who was going to get up and give a jury speech that was childish and dramatic. But she shocked us all. She told the finalists about her heart condition and although she can’t add (she said she had an operation at 12 and had to have one 12 years later and that’s this year, mind you she’s 22), it was a pretty amazing speech. She campaigned hard for Kim at final tribal, which I’m sure she was also doing back at Ponderosa and I have a feeling she was a huge part of the reason the rest of the jury didn’t vote for Sabrina out of spite. She was very powerful. That final speech and how she spoke and acted during the reunion made me think I should retract my prior statement that she will never be asked back. I think she has a shot.
Then everyone votes and we see one vote for Kim and one vote for Sabrina. At that point, I knew that had there been a single vote for Chelsea it would have been showed, so I knew she would join the likes of Stephen Fishbach, Sash Lenahan, Sugar Kiper, Dreamz Heard, Cassandra Franklin, and others on Team No Votes.
Then Jeff takes the votes and walks them into the live studio. I must say, I miss the days of his jumping out of planes and riding motorcycles across the country to bring the votes to New York. Jeff reads the votes and as predicted, Chelsea gets zero. Sabrina gets two votes (from Troyzan and Leif) and Kim gets the rest and wins the million dollars in one of the most predictable seasons of all time.
Then comes my favorite, the live reunion show! I was lucky enough to be in the studio audience for the live reunion show in NYC. The awesome Matt Quinlan was nice enough to invite me as one of his guests. I got to sit with his beautiful girlfriend surrounded by the friends and families of the other cast members. We were seated directly behind Bill Posley’s friends and family who booed every single time Colton came on the screen or was mentioned. It seems that even if Bill has forgiven Colton, his family is not over it.
I thought Colton’s mom was one of the standouts of the reunion show. I also got an opportunity to talk to her afterwards and she is such a sweet woman. I think Colton is one of the most polarizing people ever on Survivor. I know being young is no excuse for racism, but I think Colton said some things out there to play up his “character” and that he thought would make for good tv and he didn’t realize how they would come off. I’m not defending racism in any way shape or form. I find it absolutely horrific, but I think Colton may not have meant everything he said.
I couldn’t believe how many times I got teary during the reunion show. From Tarzan’s undying love for his wife to Alicia’s weepy apology, I really felt for this cast.
I thought the reunion show was better than the season itself! I do wish, however, that Jeff would make sure to get to each person so at least they could each say something during the reunion. It’s not fair to talk to random strangers in the audience and then not let Nina or Kourtney speak.
Then Kim wins fan favorite in addition to her million, which I was surprised about, but I guess it makes sense. She was the biggest player of the season and really was featured a ton. America, like the jury, respected her game.
Then we get a preview of next season, Survivor: Philippines! Where there will be three tribes, which we haven’t seen since season 8, the first All-Stars. Each of the tribes will be led by a previously medivaced player. Personally, I’m hoping to see my buddy Jonathan Penner back on, but I guess we’ll have to wait to find out!
Thanks for sticking with me all season. I’ll be back next season for Survivor: Philippines. Can’t wait to see it. Until then, don’t forget to follow me on twitter @eorlins where I’m always tweeting about my adventures and reality tv. Signing off for now, after this predictable season, xoxo, Eliza