[SPOILER ALERT: Read on only if you have already watched the season finale of Survivor: San Juan del Sur.]
In the end, the right person won. Natalie Anderson continued her string of big moves and was rewarded for it—being voted the million-dollar winner of Survivor: San Juan del Sur Wednesday evening. Her victory over Jaclyn and Missy in the final three brought this Blood vs. Water season completely full circle, as Natalie’s twin Nadiya was the very first person voted out of the game. In a matter of 36 days, the Twinnies went from worst to first.
The finale featured three challenges and three Tribal Councils as the final five contestants were whittled down to a trio. Keith kicked things off by winning a reward challenge that gave him an advantage in the next immunity challenge. That advantage was time to practice for the next contest, which involved passing three balls through a maze via four handles. With the hours of practice, Keith smoked the competition, winning the night’s first immunity.
And that’s when Natalie went to work. She forged an unlikely alliance with Jaclyn (whom had been yelling at her after the previous Tribal Council for voting our her boyfriend), gave her the hidden immunity idol, and blindsided Baylor. Her Survivor life spared, Jaclyn then shocked everyone by winning the final immunity challenge, which involved retrieving bags of puzzle pieces while climbing up and racing down a massive tower. That ended Keith’s game, as he was voted out at that night’s Tribal Council.
The final Tribal was a relatively low-key affair… until Reed got up and went on a long soliloquy, comparing Missy to a wicked stepmother from a fairy tale. But Reed’s more shocking move may have been voting for Jaclyn instead of the bigger gamer in Natalie. However, his vote (and Jon’s self-assured smile on the jury) was merely a ruse, as Natatlie was crowned the champion once all the votes were read live back in Los Angeles.
Did the right person win? Was Reed too harsh on Missy? And did the finale change the way you felt about this entire season? Feel free to weigh in. My full recap will be up soon [UPDATE: Dalton’s recap is now live], along with Jeff Probst giving some intel on next season. , and Probst also weighing in on the finale and reunion. Plus, for more Survivor scoop, follow me on Twitter @DaltonRoss. In the meantime, enjoy our pre-game interviews with the final 5 (and their loved ones) below.