This is it. The final day. Nearly five months after the 39 Day Challenge was completed, I finally posted the results. I hope this was a worthy waste of your time.
Day 39 — Best Season Finale
Ori Kohav, Brian Wildman, Rosey Sigglekow, Mervin Sanding, Sarah Casa, – Cook Islands (Adam may stay because Yul will be guaranteed to win otherwise. Ozzy sweeps immunities despite being the next one to go. Two very good immunity challenges. A fire challenge for the ages/hours. Although the first ever Final 3 prevented a 9-0 sweep of Ozzy against Becky, it worked too well to the point where we have been stuck with this blasphemous end-game format. If only Yul could have been voted out at Final 4, we would have seen a 9-0-0 vote.)
Angie MacNeil, Anne Curtis, Brandon Alexander, Bobby Harvey, – Nicaragua (Dan Lembo is immortalized by finding a personality in the final episode, Holly successfully replicates Kathy Vavrick O’ Brien’s journey, Sash and Chase get torn up by a jury, and Fabio ends the game with an immunity run and earning a winning vote from Na Onka to claim the title. The final immunity challenge was not the greatest, but the equal and fair editing of the whole episode makes it a good finale to watch.)
Brenda Porter, Phillip Scherer, Joey Pannullo, Aaron Conn, – Borneo (An ending that defines how the game will be played forever. A deadlock was ready to happen but Kelly flips, America is disappointed when Rudy loses a five-hour endurance challenge, and the whole nation is in shock when the gay exhibitionist wins a jury vote. Sadly, it will be the only jury vote that works in Hatch’s favour for the rest of his life. Survivor would be completely different if Wiglesworth had won the game.)
Ian O’ Brien, Brett Watts, Jason Bleau, – All Stars (J Lew abandons Rupert because she thinks Rupert will win an immunity challenge despite being terrible in every immunity except for one, Romber take it to the Final Two, and the angriest jury in Survivor history makes the All-Stars finale the first entertaining episode since Hatch was voted out. It was also good because it would be the end of fifteen weeks of suffering.)
Nathan Miller, David Healy, – Redemption Island (Bee Rob or the person coming back from Redemption Island would win. RI winner loses the first immunity, therefore Bee Rob wins in the most anti-climatic and least entertaining finish in the history of the show. Was anyone besides Francesqua even attempting to play the game on Ometepe?)
Rob Beasley, Alex Jordan, – Tocantins (The most classic feel to a season finale since Amazon or Vanuatu. This episode reeks of Survivor nostalgia. Unfortunately, we have not had a proper Final 2 format ever since. Maybe One World will bring about the first classic finish in six seasons? Unless South Pacific pulls out a random Final 2 tomorrow night. I doubt that happens though.)
Francisco Grilo, Andrea Zabala – China (It was a slow start but it’s all gold starting with the Day 38 Tribal Council. Amanda and Courtney blew it while Todd absolutely took the game away from them with master Survivor knowledge. I wish we could have seen Courtney win against Amanda in a Final 2 format, however.)
Matt Pike, Maxime Gauthier-LaFond, – Samoa (The most talked about finish to a Survivor finale since perhaps when Chris comes out of absolutely nowhere and wins. Brett was the last form of resistance, the betrayal of Jaison, and a Tribal Council that continues to be debated to this day. Personally I think all three of them should have lost for their terrible gameplay. Brett had literally everything go wrong thanks to the other seven Galu members. He had a million secret Final 3 deals that were only exposed in exit interviews.)
Diogo Almeida, – Vanuatu (Chris wins?????????????? How did THAT happen?! Best Day 39 trick by convincing Twila to not take any crap from the jury. The first and last time that a game was being played on the beach heading into a Final Tribal Council.)
Nelson Escobar, – Guatemala (Lydia goes home because Rafe thinks Lydia can win a final immunity; Danni pulls out an underdog final immunity win that had everyone in my household cheering; Rafe releases Danni from a promise but is bitter because Danni wouldn’t keep him after Rafe released her; and because StepheMe didn’t have Natalie Tenerelli or Phillip Sheppard to take under her wing and drag to the end, she was doomed to lose Guatemala from day one. A Danni victory was awesome.)
Ryan Weiss, – Heroes vs. Villains (Nearly 500 days of combined Survivor experience including two winners, two runner-ups, and the original villainess is perhaps the absolute biggest clash we may ever see in competitive reality television.)
Logan Saunders, – Palau (One vote? For the first finale where somebody immunities their way to the winner’s circle for the first time? Where somebody flops alliances to cause the first deadlock at Final Four since Purple Rock? Where a young man is scatter-brained to where he finds himself throwing away a million dollars after standing on an uncomfortable buoy for TWELVE hours? The ONLY impromptu Tribal Council to be held at a challenge? Katie who goes on a series of tirades and breaks down from start to finish in the episode? Add in a good reunion and you have the most underrated finale of all-time.)
Australia, Africa, Marquesas, Thailand, Amazon, Pearl Islands, Exile Island, Fiji, Micronesia, Gabon – Hit the hole!