Another season of Survivor is over and the winner of San Juan Del Sur has been announced! But were they the best player? Did any other players deserve to make it further than they did? Who was completely underrated and who was completely overrated? Join Ben and Noah as they sit down and give each contestant a grade in the official Survivor Oz – Survivor: San Juan Del Sur Report Card! We guarantee you that some contestants parents will be glad to see their reports whilst others will be hiding them on their way home!
(CONTAINS SPOILERS – If you haven’t seen the finale of Survivor: San Juan Del Sur and do not wish to know the final result, do not click below!)
Voted Out Day Three
BEN’S GRADE: C
NOAH’S GRADE: C
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Hard to give Nadiya too much criticism because she really didn’t do anything wrong so to speak. However when you’re the first boot, you can’t exactly get a super high mark either. Unlucky to have things turned against her for simply being on another reality show, could’ve been the winner of the game had she started on Hunahpu. Disappointing to see her go first
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: It wasn’t as if Nadiya was ever a terrible player of the game but she did lack some social abilities and was victim of having an automatic target thanks to The Amazing Race. Nadiya did attempt to make a female alliance and recruited Josh. Obviously calling him one the girls was a mistake but at least she was playing and attempting to take control of her position in the game. If Nadiya never competed on The Amazing Race then there is a good chance Val would have been voted out in front of her but we will save that for the ‘what if’ books! It is hard to give a first boot too high of a mark but if Nadiya had lasted she could have easily been just as successful as her sister. Although them together is a whole other story.
Voted Out Day Six
BEN’S GRADE: C+
NOAH’S GRADE: C+
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Val was mine and many peoples pre-season pick to win and it was a big shock to see her go home second. Despite her going so early, she played a strong game but perhaps overplayed the situation when it came to the two idols lie. Would’ve been a force to reckon with later in the game and I feel had she managed to get on side with Jeremy in a switch or merge, they could’ve been unstoppable. Would love to see her return for another crack at it, but that’s extremely doubtful.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Like Nadiya, it is not as if Val played a terrible game nor was a useless player for her short time playing. Although it shouldn’t be used as an excuse, being on Exile Island for the first two days of the game probably damaged her and deprived her of starting the game on equal footing. Val fought to stay in the game and tried to create an alliance first with the women and then with John Rocker. The two idol strategy was a farfetched but bold move to save not only herself but her ally Jaclyn. Val went down with a huge fight and refused to just go out silently. She will go down as one of the better second boot players in the shows history.
Voted Out Day Eight
BEN’S GRADE: C+
NOAH’S GRADE: C+
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Let me start out by saying Rocker didn’t play a bad game. Far from it. He stayed out of trouble (for the most part) and just did his thing. However, he did manage to score the wrath of Jeremy after the Val vote, and it is likely he would’ve been a dead man walking had those two ended up on a tribe together. Besides from that, it’s hard to fault anything he did. It was more his background that people kept raising that caused all the distain towards him and that was far from his fault. Going to say it, underrated as a player and overlooked based on his reputation which I feel is extremely unfair.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Say what you will about John Rocker but he NEVER said anything racist or homophobic during the game and given I try and not let outside factors affect how I view players in the game, I will do the same for Rocker. So in saying that, I don’t think John played a terrible game during his short stay on the island. Like Nadiya and Val, Rocker basically had an excuse as to just why he was voted out based on the other tribe pressuring Coyopa to make the move. Before that he had a strong alliance, found a hidden immunity idol and was a valued member of the tribe. Obviously he made some mistakes such as mixing stories regarding working with Val and his downfall moment wanting to fight Natalie. You can say what you want out of the game but John Rocker didn’t play an outright bad game of Survivor and could have made it much further had it not been for Hunahpu.
Voted Out Day Ten
BEN’S GRADE: D-
NOAH’S GRADE: F
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Escapes an F simply for the fact that I have reserved that mark for quitters and quitters only. Will go down as one of the dumbest players to ever play the game and perhaps one of the worst. Had absolutely no clue what he was doing out there and had the social game of park bench. Enough said.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Drew really is one of the worst players in Survivor history and that is perhaps what makes him so entertaining. He is one of the few Survivor contestants to have an entire episode dedicated to him. Before his episode we had glimpses of goofiness and bad gameplay and this only escalated come episode four. Drew’s plan to throw the challenge on his own, with perhaps some discussion with other tribe members, ultimately lead to him being voted out. There is really no one to blame for Drew’s downfall except himself. Calling the female tribe members “bitches” and arguing with his alliance members only adds to his resume of bad plays. Drew’s plan to manipulate minds just really lead to one of the worst games in Survivor history and is one of the times when a player did absolutely nothing right.
Voted Out Day Thirteen
BEN’S GRADE: B-
NOAH’S GRADE: B-
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Kelley impressed me and showed some game savvy moments that I really feel could’ve taken her far. The switch hurt her game big time, and had she remained around Jeremy, Natalie and Missy she would’ve gone super deep in the game. A likeable contestant who has a strong fan base, it was a shame to see her completely ignored at the reunion. I for one would love to see her come back and show her full potential. Make it happen CBS!
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Kelley never really did anything too wrong in the game and isn’t a terrible player. She was Jeremy’s number two during the original Hunahpu tribe and she seemed to be in no real danger to go home. It is hard to tell if Kelley would have failed and had been voted out if Hunahpu did go to more tribal’s as we just didn’t see enough of her. The fact that Drew referred to her as the real mastermind of the tribe probably suggests she was a good player. Points slightly lowered that she did receive some votes in her first tribal though. Working with her dad really was Kelley’s downfall and like the previous contestants and our excuses, the tribe switch really put her in a tough position. It is hard to look to harshly on Kelley as most of her game was quite strong but on the other end she was the fifth voted out and struggled to swing the vote her way at the switch.
Voted Out Day Fifteen
BEN’S GRADE: C+
NOAH’S GRADE: C+
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Dale was an obvious first boot and was very lucky to escape that fate after turning the tables on Nadiya to stay in the game. Other factors soon fell in his favour and before long he was in a handy position on Coyopa that made him stick around longer than most predicted. The switch hurt him, and as soon as Kelley left he was on borrowed time. Made a good play with the fake idol to attempt to keep himself alive, but other than that there wasn’t a whole lot to sing home about.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Dale’s game started out quite strong. He was on the outs purely based on age but worked his way into the tribe by becoming the fire maker of the tribe. He seemed to be well liked and was already calling some shots for the first tribal council. He was the one who initially targeted Nadiya to avoid the votes on him. While he did receive some initial votes he was in a good position for a short time. After Rocker was voted out he then fell to the bottom of the tribe but had a second chance when the tribes switched. Dale and his daughter attempted to work themselves into the majority but past relations and fighting with Missy ensured they failed. It is commendable that he fought to the very end with his fake idol and that he didn’t go out quietly but ultimately Dale just couldn’t create strong enough alliances to leverage him to the merge.
Quit Day Eighteen
BEN’S GRADE: F
NOAH’S GRADE: F
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Any quitter automatically gets an F. That’s my standard practice. But if Julie was just a generic vote out at this point she would probably end up with a normal C. She had herself in close with the main Hunahpu alliance and although it was perceived she was at the bottom, she might’ve been a good person to keep around towards the end as a ‘goat’ or something and maybe work her way into things more. And as much as I hate the distain towards quitters as I feel it’s unfair to judge someone based on quitting unless you have been there yourself, I have to stick with my standard quit rank. Sorry Julie!
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: It is hard not to give a quitter higher than an F. In saying that, I don’t think Julie played a terrible game up until her quit. Ok, sure it wasn’t great but Julie was in a strong alliance and held her own in the challenges. She dominated against Rocker in the dual and took it extremely well considering her entire tribe was talking constant shit about her boyfriend through the game. Julie probably would have never won the game but could have made it to the final three and have been a contender in the challenges. It still wasn’t made entirely clear (on the show, the reasons are obvious) why Julie quit and the trail mix scandal was not a shining point. The quit is especially rubbed in considering she could have been on the jury.
Voted Out Day Twenty-One
BEN’S GRADE: B+
NOAH’S GRADE: B
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Josh played a fantastic game that had every possibility to take him all the way to the end and win. Forged an alliance early, had people following his plans and then post switch continued to hold this position but didn’t have to use any ‘power’ as his tribe never lost. Would’ve been in the game and taken Jeremy out had Julie not quit, and from there it was the big move the cut his dream of winning short. Great personality, great gameplay and one of the outstanding stars of this season. Deserves to return and have another crack.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Josh wasn’t a bad player of the game but he was perhaps overrated thanks to his generously large edit. I mean just after the first tribal he was already voting for his ally and someone who supposably his ally and voting against the grain, something that bit him back later. In saying that Josh did play an incredibly good social game and it wasn’t until his final tribal that he was ever in a serious position to be voted out. Perhaps he played too much to make himself such a massive target so early in the merge but he must have been doing some things successful to get that target. Josh has a strong blend of social, psychical and strategic gameplay. The thing that doesn’t increase Josh’s grade is the fact that he couldn’t work it or make it past first jury member and find a way further in the game. At the end of the day Josh was a good player of Survivor but wasn’t brilliant.
Voted Out Day Twenty-Four
BEN’S GRADE: B+
NOAH’S GRADE: B
BEN’S THOUGHTS: One of the best players this season, it took an extremely surprising blindside to cut his game short. Worked himself into a strong alliance that he controlled on Hunahpu for the first parts of the game and contributed to his sides winning streak. Post switch things looked dicey but luckily he helped them win more challenges to stay post merge. Got a huge break when it came to Julie quitting, and then looked to have control again after the Josh blindside. However one quick thought from apparent alliance buddy Jon and things were done for him, but it’s hard to fault any part of his game. Was well liked and respected by everyone and was constantly talked as a massive threat in the game. If he hadn’t been blindsided later on he definitely could’ve gone all the way. BRING HIM BACK CBS!
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Like Josh, I do think Jeremy is overrated but still quite good of a player. Perhaps the reason they were so at each other’s heads was because they were actually so similar. Like Josh, Jeremy was extremely well like and played a strong social game. During the original Hunahpu tribe everybody looked up to him and even when Keith told them that Jeremy had an idol they still didn’t fuss and came running back to him. The way the tribe dynamics fell after the switch could have led to him being a pre merge boot but I guess that is something we will never know. Jeremy was a strong psychical player as a part of the tribe but was less than impressive in the individual challenges even if he did win one. Jeremy was a strong player who knew what he was doing but despite his strong edit we never got to see how much of a strategic player he was outside of creating a core alliance. The Drew vote was a mess and then the next vote was the Josh vote where everyone who wasn’t voting with Josh was voting against him. Next tribal, Jeremy’s third was his final. That is not to take away from him and his strong tribe and alliance but we didn’t see a whole lot of what Jeremy was supposably known for. I was tempted to lower his grade based on him constantly complaining that people who bested him or could get themselves further were terrible players but in credit to Jeremy he never said that within the game or too their faces and that level of control is at least commendable.
Voted Out Day Twenty-Six
BEN’S GRADE: C+
NOAH’S GRADE: B
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Wes was the little ‘hanger onner’ that could. Always finding himself in the middle of any situation and slid his way through the drama to end up on the jury. Outside of that what did he do? Not a whole lot. Hard to give him a higher mark based on that, although he was very unlucky to go home the night he did based on how the votes played out with the idols in play. Hope he enters another nugget competition soon!
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: I don’t think Wes was as bad of a player that many have said but he certainly isn’t a great. Wes probably wouldn’t have won but I can’t really think of anything bad Wes did or anything that suggests he is a terrible player. During the entire pre merge phase Wes was always in the majority and had a control of the vote. He was never in trouble to go home until the time that he actually did leave. Wes was very well liked and didn’t seem to have any enemies. He was an equal member of the Coyopa men’s alliance and a vital part of the Coyopa newly formed alliance. He was a part of the majority in new Hunahpu and found himself a vital part of the majority alliance (for a short time) in the merge. Wes really was only voted out because of association to his father but I guess that is Blood vs Water though isn’t it. Wes talked strategy and wasn’t dumb, we just rarely saw it and because of that reason he gets a negative perception as a player. Poor Wesley!
Voted Out Day Twenty-Nine
BEN’S GRADE: B
NOAH’S GRADE: B-
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Hard to get a massive read (get it?) on Reed’s game given we spent the first half of the season learning about his food cravings and really nothing more. He did come into his own though after Josh was taken out and he showed lots of fight and tenacity that was obviously present previously, we just didn’t get to see it. Similar to Jeremy and Val, a Josh/Jeremy duo that went far would’ve been killer and I feel we were robbed of seeing that happen. A super nice guy as well, it’s hard to find anybody (except maybe Missy and Baylor) who didn’t come away liking him as a person.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: It is a shame we didn’t see more of Reed’s game as he was entertaining when we saw him and we only have post merge gameplay to go off. Before the merge he only attended one tribal council where he didn’t vote with the majority alliance. It is difficult to tell if this was because he was on the outs or was just confused by the “hot mess” of the scenario. From then on out he was practically on the bottom until he was voted out. There have been rumours that he was creating unnecessary drama in the early Hunahpu days and that he was going to be the first one out but given this was never shown or hinted at on the show I will go ahead and say it either doesn’t exist or count in this rating. Reed certainly wasn’t unintelligent and his move to vote Jon out was smart and would have worked if it wasn’t for “stick to the plan.” Although if you had to make one criticism I would say that he maybe went overboard on expressing the desire to flush Keith’s idol out that set Keith off. At the end of the day Reed isn’t a terrible Survivor player and could probably be quite successful but based on this game, bar one strong move, he wasn’t the greatest in the game.
Voted Out Day Thirty-Two
BEN’S GRADE: C+
NOAH’S GRADE: B-
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Similar to what I wrote for Wes, Alec really just hung around for the most part but didn’t really contribute a great deal along the way. Seemed to have the ‘brains’ of the Christy family (at least for some parts of the game) but outside of that he lacked good enough social skills and was nothing more than a victim of a last minute blindside by Natalie.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Alec and Wes played a fairly similar game that wasn’t terrible but wasn’t overly fantastic. He was in the majority during the Coyopa era, was stuck in the middle during the new Hunahpu era and then landed in the minority for most of the merge. Alec successfully lied to the alliance to enable the Reed move would be successful but still landed in the bottom. We didn’t see him try overly hard to stay in the game but he did at least try and work the angle with Baylor. For the most part Alec wasn’t doing anything wrong in his game but he still wasn’t the most intelligent game player and probably would have struggled to make it to the end in most scenarios and would have probably lost the game if he stuck with his main merge alliance.
Voted Out Day Thirty-Five
BEN’S GRADE: B
NOAH’S GRADE: B+
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Jon played a great game for the most part but I do feel he is slightly overrated in terms of a strategic player. He made a fantastic move taking out Jeremy when he did, but it did seem that most of the moves that were calculated between him and Jaclyn came from her. A lot of his plays also came from assistance from other players, and it seemed there were very few moments that he actually was able to calculate a move that was purely based on his own. Still, he was super well liked by his tribe mates, strong in challenges and no doubt would’ve been a massive threat for the win at the end of the game. A solid player, but not spectacular.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Jon has the seeds to be a brilliant Survivor player and he wasn’t all that bad to start with. His biggest problem was too much trust within his alliance and not enough scepticism on who could vote him out. In saying that, for the few things that were negative about Jon’s game, there are far more positives. For the most part he was extremely likeable and could have won over many votes in the jury and was a real challenge competitor. In his one Hunahpu tribal council he didn’t vote with the majority but he still wasn’t seen as a target to go home, even after he lost the tribes flint. From the new Coyopa onwards Jon and his girlfriend Jaclyn were essentially the swing votes until almost the end of his game. Jon and Jaclyn played the game basically as one morphed player but I don’t use this detriment for either of their games as let’s face it, the theme of the season is playing with your loved ones. It will never be known if Jon was really going to play his idol in that crazy tribal or if credit should go to Natalie or Jaclyn but regardless it was a strong point for the resume. Jon and Jaclyn voting out Josh and then Jeremy was commendable and their strategy as a whole isn’t bad. Jon’s major problem was too much trust in his alliance and being too blind to his surroundings but other than that there aren’t a lot of problems with his game. I was jumping back and forth between a B and B+ for Jon and ultimately went for the higher mark as if Jon made it to the finals the only real competition to beat him at the end would probably be Natalie but if there was a mark between the two grades then that would be where Jon would be placed!
Voted Out Day Thirty-Seven
BEN’S GRADE: B
NOAH’S GRADE: B
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Super underrated as a player and needs far more respect for her game. As much credit as Natalie is getting for her win (we’ll get to her), several moments wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for Baylor being at her side. She scraped through the first half of the game and somehow survived to the merge, and working alongside her mother she never really was in much danger for the middle part of the game. Appeared to be following the word of everything her mum said for large parts, but working behind the scenes with Natalie sold her as a player that by far needs more love. It’s all about escaping those sticky situations right?
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Baylor was an underrated player in the game and I will continue to stick by that. In saying that, her game had many flaws that doesn’t warrant her higher than B. The major flaw is her social game. Baylor was constantly being shown as lazy and not a team player around camp. We saw this with Alec talking to her in the pre merge and then once again with Keith and the men at the merge. The fact that this was constantly being highlighted suggests it was a real problem that damaged Baylor’s game. The other major flaw in the social game is Missy constantly defending her daughter and not letting her become an independent player. It appeared that Baylor lost respect from the jury because of this constant defending, something that probably would have been brought up at the final tribal council had she made it. On to Baylor’s positives, starting with Coyopa and her playing a vital role in the John Rocker vote out and establishing herself in the majority alliance. From then on out she was in the majority for most of the game and had a say in which players were voted out. Almost all the moves that Natalie was credited for involved Baylor and it really was a two person dominance. Like it or not some of those moves would not have worked without Baylor’s involvement. So there we have it, Baylor probably would never have won the game but was slightly underrated and from the outside looking in didn’t play a bad game.
Voted Out Day Thirty-Eight
BEN’S GRADE: B-
NOAH’S GRADE: B
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Struggled so hard with this ranking as I for sure thought I would give him a high C or something similar based on him really struggling to even have a clue at what he was doing. But after a couple of days to reflect, I am starting to feel he is slightly underrated in terms of his gameplay. He never admitted to being a strategic mastermind and for somebody who ‘didn’t have a clue’ what he was doing he managed to escape every tough situation by being a super likeable guy who people seemed to overlook. A challenge beast, he also correctly played his idol and he needs credit for surviving the switch when things looked super dicey for him being the only single against three couples. The most memorable character from this season by far, Keith is somebody who deserves to return to see if lightning can strike twice.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: I will preface this entry by saying that I initially had Keith at a B-, on reflection Keith isn’t as much of a terrible player as many have said and I will attempt to explain why. Keith almost unarguably could have won San Juan Del Sur and that alone means he can’t be a terrible player. Keith played under the radar but was open and present enough that he wasn’t seen a floater. His social game certainly had issues when he ignored some of the women on the tribe but he made enough allegiances and friendships to have a majority of the votes. He certainly wasn’t the best strategist but was aware of what was going on in the game and on multiple times made comments on the dynamics of the tribe such as calling out Jon at the challenge or mentioning the majority alliance having to destroy each other and that Jaclyn was on the outs. Keith was brilliant at the challenges and pulled the win on many occasions when he needed it. “Stick to the plan” was incredibly stupid but at least he knew to play the idol when he realised that he had made a mistake. At the end of the day Keith is not a brilliant Survivor player but psychically, strategically and socially he slides in the middle and encompasses the average, could be better, could be worse criteria for a B grading. While at times it seems like Keith is doing everything wrong in the game but someone who had a legitimate shot at the win can’t be that much of a terrible player.
BEN’S GRADE: B+
NOAH’S GRADE: B
BEN’S THOUGHTS: Missy was very unlucky not to end up with more than one vote at the end after playing a very strong and solid game. Always in an alliance that had her in a good position, she was also always at the forefront of most decisions in these alliances. Strong in challenges (when she could use both legs), she formed super strong relationships out there with most people and seemed to be respected in areas where her daughter was not. Faced two younger contestants at the end which you could argue made it difficult for a woman her age, and it’s disappointing that she couldn’t have ended up closer to the final two.
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: I was surprised at how much crap Missy received or how she wasn’t respected in the final tribal council. But on reflection most of it was probably warranted. Missy did play the game and had her shining moments but at the end of the day wasn’t overly great like most of these players, fitting somewhere in the middle. If we are to give one major credit to her, Missy was one of the only contestants whose name was never seriously considered to be voted out through the entirety of the game. During her one Hunahpu tribal council Missy had a huge role in the elimination of Drew and was seen as the motherly figure helping people like Julie. At new Coyopa Missy and her daughter managed to swing Jon and Jaclyn to their side and put them in the majority. Missy may have pissed some people off but did create strong bonds with some players such as Jon and Keith and even Natalie has nice things to say about her. Missy’s weakest point was her constant defending of her daughter and getting way too emotional over anything involving Baylor. At times her social game did seem lacking as well like rubbing it in to people who were still in the standing challenge while she got to stand in the sand. Missy is one of those players who could probably excel on a second time playing and who has her strengths but comes with equal weaknesses.
BEN’S GRADE: A-
NOAH’S GRADE: B+
BEN’S THOUGHTS: People are probably going to laugh at my rating but Jaclyn to me will go down as the most underrated and overlooked player of the season. She started off invisible in terms of the edit and each week we simply counted down the minutes until she would go home. But it never happened, and time and time again she was saved. Then came the switch. Things came up Jaclyn and really it never looked back. Her working with Jon was fun to watch, and she is way overlooked in terms of the control and sway she had in that pairing. The Josh vote out was pivotal, and then Jon got his chance next by taking out Jeremy. The two biggest players in the game were gone and the game was swung wide open. From that point Jaclyn played her cards strongly. Stuck by Jon and managed to get him to side with her in most situations. Worked with Natalie to keep her close with her and Jon. Kept on side with Alec for an extra vote when needed and allowed Jon to have good bonds with Missy and Baylor that gave her control in the majority. When things looked against her and she lost her cool with Natalie, she was able to sway her way back on side with her to allow Natalie to save her when things were over, and pulled out the most crucial immunity win when it was needed to make it to the FTC. Then at the end? She owned FTC and held up to every single move she made, and I feel was robbed of at least two more votes from the jury. On a season with only a couple of stand out players, she managed to get to the end against all odds of what people thought at the start of the year. I applaud you Jaclyn!
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Another player who has been underestimated or overlooked but Jaclyn really did play a strong game and is someone who I would consider putting in my top 10 runner ups of all time. One of her major criticisms is that she played too closely or latched on to Jon. I don’t really see this as a legitimate argument as this is freaking Blood vs Water!! The purpose is to either play with or against your loved ones to help yourself get further in the game and that is exactly what she did. Many people have said that Jon’s jury vote for her doesn’t count which again is an absurdly idiotic comment as once again the theme is playing with your loved ones so to say having your loved one voting for you to win isn’t counted is just wrong. As much as you want to argue about Reed’s vote as well, it was still for Jaclyn so in the end she earned that spot as second place by sitting next to Missy. While she lay in Jon’s shadow, Jaclyn had just as much or sometimes even more say in the vote or strategy than her boyfriend did. Of course the major one that goes on the resume is the Josh vote out which completely shifted the game. Jaclyn and Jon managed to work a swing vote strategy and pulled it off. While Natalie deserves credit for Jaclyn being in the final three, Jaclyn still fought and played her way into that position. While Jaclyn is an extremely underrated player, she didn’t come without her flaws, namely being on the outs for much of the early Coyopa days and sometimes being a wildcard in terms of her emotions. Bring back Jax!
BEN’S GRADE: A
NOAH’S GRADE: A-
BEN’S THOUGHTS: The 28th winner of Survivor, the second Natalie to win and the first Asian-American woman to be crowned a millionaire at the end of the game. Ladies and gentleman Natalie Anderson! Natalie’s game never really started till the merge, and the Jeremy vote out kicked her into gear to make things turn into her favour. Before that she attempted a few things like a cross tribal alliance with Baylor on Exile (which never really came to anything till later on in the game when she would’ve been with her anyway) and staying in tight and close to the majority on Hunahpu. She did hold her head up high after the early vote out of her sister and rode through that emotion, however her blow up against Rocker was over the top and was very lucky not to come back and bite her in the ass as it’s super rare that a winner of Survivor can get away with such a public show and not have it bite them. But when her game came to life, it was down to making big moves, some of which worked, others which she got lucky with. Getting Jon to play his idol last minute was a last minute call that worked for the most part, but with her end game from that point to take out Jon it did raise a few eyebrows as to why she didn’t just cut him off then and there. That aside, her last minute move to take out Alec over Keith also seems to get a lot of praise, but it really wasn’t till the Jon blindside that she was in the box seat for the win. Her move to save Jaclyn and take out Baylor worked a treat, and it prevented another person capable of going on an immunity run to go all the way to the end. Got extremely lucky at the last TC before FTC that they didn’t wake up and just take her out, and then came out at FTC and answered strongly to own up to her game to walk away a millionaire! A deserving winner of the season, however she won’t go down as one of the all time greatest winners in the history of the show. Congratulations Natalie!
NOAH’S THOUGHT’S: Natalie was the best player of Survivor: San Juan Del Sur. For me personally she isn’t a top 10 winner but she played pretty damn hard to get where she was in the finals. I liken Natalie’s win to Tony from Cagayan both of which made big and potentially fatal moves but constantly getting away with it. Natalie was rarely ever out of the majority and almost always had a role in the vote. The one notable exclusion being the Jeremy blindside which is one of the major things that puts her as a minus rather than a whole mark but the way in which she recuperated from it was impressive. I believe Natalie was perceived as in Jeremy’s shadow so his blindside ultimately probably helped with her win. While she only won one immunity challenge, Natalie was always a competitor and tough competition in all the challenges. The use of her idol and the Baylor blindside was risky but showed the jury a ‘big move’ which is apparently what the jury wants to see. Natalie never showed any signs of a particularly strong social game but it also didn’t seem that anyone disliked the Twinnie and this helped her in the finals against someone like Missy. At the end of the game Natalie didn’t play a flawless game but it was strong nonetheless and everything was done that was needed to ensure she was the winner.
Do you agree with our report card? Who did we get right? Who did we get wrong? Comment below to let us know your thoughts!
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