Wednesday has arrived and with it, as always, comes another SURVIVOR OZ TOP TEN! All of our Ozlets are Survivor buffs, but how many of them are Survivor Buff buffs? Buffs are classic features of Survivor that have been used to identify different tribes since the very first season in Borneo. Since then, we have seen them come in many different colours, patterns and styles (worn as headbands, skirts and even bow-ties.) Three of our Ozlets are the proud owners of every single Buff featured on the show. They have each compiled a list of their favourite Survivor Buffs from their own personal collections. Below, Ozlets Troy Maynard, Cable Brandon and Michael “Big Mike” Albright, bring you their top ten Buffs. Which Buff will be number one? What is your favourite Buff? What do you think of the guys top tens? Comment below with your thoughts!
10. The Unused Green Merge Buff – Palau
The Buff that never was… on the show that is. Thanks to the Koror tribe dominating the game, no Merge happened on this season; an event yet to be repeated. Come to think of it, what would the name of the merge tribe have been?
9. Boran – Africa
While this Buff was traditionally blank (the first three seasons had no background design), the gold Buff made the Boran tribe, including Ethan Zohn, shine like a million bucks whenever the cameras were on them.
8. Ying Yang – Heroes Vs. Villains
Evil took over the tribe and the Villains touted their victories adorning the black Buff. Being bad never looked so good!
7. Balboa – Pearl Islands
The first ever black Buff gave the pirate-themed season its unique look; a look that has been copied several times over, but with not much fanfare.
6. Rotu – Marquesas
The Rotu Buff, along with the other Marquesas Buffs, were the first ones to feature background designs, giving the Buff its extra visual dimension.
5. Alinta – Vanuatu
The people of the fire represented Vanuatu with this orange Buff, and a red hot cast was even hotter thanks to this fiery addition to the collection.
4. Yaxha – Guatemala
Blue has always been a fan favourite Buff, and this one is no exception. Not too dark to distract, and light enough to give an non-exotic environment a refreshing look.
3. Koror – Palau
The only time the colour brown has ever been used on a Buff, it makes a somewhat unappealing colour have a kick-ass presence thanks to its camouflage design. While the blue camouflage isn’t too bad either, the brown is the way to go for collectors.
2. Dabu – Micronesia
From the landmark season, this Buff has another set of intricate designs, with the colour white (a colour that will never be its own Buff due to production request). Truly tropical looking and easily appealing to the eyes, it makes any non-collector want to start now!
1. Hae Da Fung – China
This is the Holy Grail of Buffs! The intricate designs give the dragons a unique appearance, not to mention the neon-like symbols and lettering on the side. While black is a colour that several die-hard fans get sick of, this Buff gives fans a reason to be forgiving of the overuse.
As a proud owner of every tribe Buff to ever be used by the tribes of Survivor, it’s a hard task to pick my favourite ten. I love them all. But if for some unfortunate reason I could only keep ten, the following are the ones I would keep.
10. Airai – Micronesia
A little bias here as I really like this season and the concept of Fans taking on some Survivor Favourites. Orange is not a colour I’m immediately attracted to, (and probably my least liked colour), but this Buff is a lighter shade of orange as compared to a Tagi or Barramundi Buff. Its level of detail is amazing, something a photo doesn’t really capture. The best orange tribe Buff in Survivor.
9. Casaya – Panama
Originally the Buff of the older women’s tribe, (which lasted one whole episode), the Casaya Buff will forever be associated with one the most dysfunctional tribes in Survivor history! One of my favourite seasons and one of the best tribes to watch EVER, how could you not love watching Aras, Bob Dawg, Bruce, Cirie, Courtney, Danielle and Shane. I also loved the logo for this season, so that makes this Buff a must keep. Honourable mention: Bayoneta Buff.
8. Foa Foa – Samoa
Forever associated with the Foa Foa Four and the King of Survivor, Russell Hantz, this was the Buff of Samoa. Worn proudly by Russell and his ‘dumb girl alliance’, this is my favourite yellow Buff of all time. I love that the Hidden Immunity Idol is actually within the Buff design.
7. The Unused Green Merge Buff – Palau
This Buff was supposed to be used for the merged tribe of Palau, but due to Ulong being decimated by Koror, the Merge never took place and the camo-green Buff unfortunately was never seen on television. At the time, these Buffs were extremely easy and cheap to purchase on eBay, and I’ve always wondered why they produced so many, especially when the Buff was never used in the show.
6. Fei Long – China
The Fei Long Buff is my favourite red Buff. The details of the dragon and the Chinese lettering on the Buff make it an exceptionally good looking Buff, and I guess my bias is that I really liked the tribe as well. Equally as good is the black merge Buff.
5. Soliantu – Marquesas
This Buff marks the first and last time a colour like this has been used in the world of Survivor. It is a must keep Buff from a really enjoyable season, and the first of two Marquesas Buffs to make the list.
4. Mogo Mogo – All-Stars
Green is my favourite colour, so there is some bias here, but the Mogo Mogo Buff was my favourite shade of green – it has only been used twice in Survivor. I also love it because it’s from the All-Stars season, it was a hard to find Buff, and it belonged to the tribe that had Richard Hatch, Jenna Morasca, Lex van den Berghe and my all time fave, Colby Donaldson.
3. Rotu – Marquesas
This is the second Marquesas Buff to make the list, and it is definitely one of my all time favourites. This was the last season of the Reebok Buffs and the first season to have Buffs with a more intricate design, (Marquesas Tiki), and not just a single colour; like the previous three seasons. I luckily have this Buff signed by Boston Rob!
2. Balboa – Pearl Islands
This marked the first time that a black Buff made an appearance in Survivor, and it totally suited the pirate theme of Pearl Islands. Pearl Islands is in my top five seasons and this Buff is definitely a keeper.
Trivia: There were some misprinted Balboa Buffs out there that were missing the colour blue. Luckily I own one.
1. Ogakor & Kucha – The Australian Outback
Okay, so I’m kind of cheating with this one, but I really can’t have one without the other. The Australian Outback was officially my first full Survivor season, (I never saw all of Borneo), and the beginning of my Survivor obsession. I was rooting for Ogakor from Day One, (Colby Donaldson does that), but I also loved the colour of the Kucha Buff. I have the original Reebok issues of all three Buffs, which cost me a bit of cash, so I would never part with these. These are my pride and joy and they remind me of the time when I fell in love with Survivor.
Big Mike’s List:
10. Drake – Pearl Islands
9. Any Buff From The Australian Outback
8. Casaya – Panama
The Buff of the craziest, most dysfunctionally successful tribe of all time.
7. The Unused Green Merge Buff – Palau
This Buff represents an interesting piece of Survivor history. It was never used due to Koror crushing Ulong and there being no merge. However, CBS made them and had to sell them. It is the only issued Buff never used on the Survivor program or seen on the show.
*This Buff has featured on every one of our Ozlets’ Top Ten Buffs lists.
6. Lopevi – Vanuatu
This Buff was worn by Chris, who dominated the game.
5. Soliantu (Reebok Edition) – Marquesas
Just a sharp looking Buff.
4. Boran (Reebok Edition) –Africa
The Buff of my favourite tribe and, due to its yellow colour, one of the easiest to sign and display.
3. Red 10th Anniversary Buff
I acquired this Buff at the tenth anniversary of Survivor as a gift from one of the Marketing Staff members. It displays logos from seasons one to twenty.
2. Blue 10th Anniversary Buff
This Buff was issued to Erinn Lobdell for entry into the party. She gave it to me at the Renaissance at Hollywood and Highland for being such a big fan. It displays logos from seasons one to twenty.
1. Tagi (Reebok Edition) – Borneo
This Reebok original issue is the rarest Buff on Earth. It is signed by Richard, Kelly, Rudy, Sue and Sonja.
What do you think of the top 10? Do you agree? Disagree? Is it in the wrong order or are there ones that didn’t make the top 10 that you feel should’ve? Leave a comment below to let us know your thoughts!