All’s well that ends well. That’s pretty much the way I feel about this season’s Survivor finale. I give credit to the show producers. Not a great deal of drama, honestly, other than fooling me into believing it was going to be a triumvirate of contestants at the Final Tribal Council instead of a Final Two. To that end, I thought Spencer’s attempts to woo (ha!) Tony into giving him a shot at a tie in the Final Four vote was smart. It was also the last bullet in Spencer’s gun.
Even Spencer’s final attempts were something of a microcosm of the entire game: it all revolved around Tony who, in the end, won the game by an 8-1 vote over runner-up Woo. I’m not sure I’m 100 percent convinced Woo isn’t regretting taking Tony to the finish. There’s no telling, but I do believe he would’ve beaten Kass in a Final Tribal. Hell, I think a bucket of spit could’ve beaten Kass in the final Tribal Council.
While there is truth to her view that women who play Survivor are held to a different standard than men, she’s awfully arrogant and completely unaware if she thinks her game was in any way as strategic as Tony’s. It wasn’t. Sure, she made big moves, but they were all the wrong moves. Nothing she ever did improved her position in the game. She just made moves for the hell of it. Tony made big moves to improve his chances of winning.
The only chance of winning Kass ever had was if she had aligned with Trish and Tasha to go to the end. But she never would’ve beaten Tasha. I’m not sure Tony or Spencer could’ve beaten Tasha, really. She had a more complete game than Spencer and Tony combined.
In the end, here’s how I’d break down this season’s players, from best to worst.
1. Tony—No doubt about it, he controlled the entire game. He didn’t win immunity, but he had everyone on their toes all along. Well deserved win.
(Tie) 2. Tasha—The one player who probably scared all the players the most. She won Immunity Challenges and made it look easy. She was able to keep herself off the chopping block for most of the game, until the merge. Too bad she got voted when she did. I think she deserved to be there much more than others. MUCH more!
(Tie) 2. Spencer—No player fought his or her way from the bottom more than Spencer. He won immunity because he had to. The target was always on his back. Always.
4. L.J.—A strong player, but an early victim to Tony’s strategy. I had him pegged early as a guy who could win. He posed a threat to too many people.
5. Sara—Had #CluelessKass not sacrificed her when she did, I think Sara would’ve been a finalist. She was strong in challenges and had alliances all over the island. She did not deserve to be the first juror. Not by a long shot.
6. Woo—I like Woo. He’s a great kid and made me laugh. Also, I’d rather have him on my side in challenges because of his physical ability. While Woo can preach integrity in his everyday life and that is admirable, it rarely translates into a winning strategy. Being the guy behind the guy is a recipe for guaranteed runner-up. Nevertheless, good job in challenges.
7. Trish—She was nothing more than Tony’s No. 1, which means she’ll never get higher than No. 2. Zero aggressive moves on her own. I thought Tony might take her to the end because I seriously didn’t see anyone on that jury giving her a vote. She was weak in challenges and weaker in strategy.
8. Jeffra—Seriously, did she have a strategy other than riding behind L.J.? She was so bent out of shape over Tony blindsiding her biggest ally, how did she respond? By sticking with Tony and getting blindsided herself. Brilliant strategy, Rommel.
9. Jeremiah—This dude…wow. For some players, they happen to the game. For Jeremiah, the game happened to him. He had nothing. Nothing. At least Jeffra THOUGHT about making a big move. That’s more than we can say about Jeremiah.
10. Morgan—She was pretty. And brought absolutely nothing else to the island. She didn’t even deserve to get as far as she got.
11. Kass—Awful player. Smug. Condescending. Zero self awareness. She made moves…all the wrong ones! Had she taken the opposite tack of each of her self-anointed great moves, she would’ve had a better shot at winning. “But she got to the Top Three,” people will say. Yeah, as a goat. She was never going to win this game. Not with her nonsensical, non-strategic gameplay. She flipped alliances at the merge, to what end? How did that improve her chances? It didn’t. Not for one second. Kass was worst than Morgan because she thought she was better at this game than she actually was. Smug arrogance without reason is annoying. Glad you lost.
One Final Note: Call me, Jeff Probst. I’m ready to play. And I’ll win.