Hannah sees strength in taking out weakness

By Dalton Ross
December 08, 2016 at 06:06 PM EST
CBS Entertainment

What a weird season of Survivor this has been. Not weird in terms of there being a big trunk of cash and a gong at Tribal Council (which does still freak me out when I go back and watch season 1), but weird nonetheless. Think about it: Millennials vs. Gen X has had a ridiculous amount of lying, backstabbing, and blindsiding. So, what naturally comes with lying, backstabbing, and blindsiding? A lot of pissed-off people who were just lied to, backstabbed, and blindsided. The two are inexorably linked. We’ve seen it a million times: We go to Tribal Council, then the people who were on the wrong side of the vote get angry when they get back to camp. The night vision freak-out where everyone looks like they’re in some low-budget found-footage horror movie is a Survivor staple, for crying out loud!

But not this season. People have been flipping this season more than Greg Louganis, but instead of others getting all riled up about it, everyone just moves on. For maybe the first time ever, we have a cast that’s able to distinguish pretty clearly between the strategic and the personal. Sure, Zeke gave Hannah the business a bit after her early flip on Mari. Yes, Michaela went into Tribal Council stare-down mode once Jay blindsided her. And indeed, there was the time Bret and Zeke unnecessarily went after David’s anxiety a few Tribals back. But all these incidents were isolated as opposed to festering.

What we’ve seen is a season where the players respect each other even as they’re trying to bury one another. Look at the two interactions between Adam and Jay in this week’s episode. After Adam betrayed Jay by voting out Will instead of David, the two rivals had a nighttime chat. Instead of a screaming match, we got an apology (Adam: “I’m sorry that I lied to you again”) and a compliment (Jay: “I respect you fully”).

Then, later, Adam told Jay that although they had now become best buddies because of the loved ones’ visit, he was still going to force him to use his hidden immunity idol. “Am I that big of a threat to you that you have to strip me of everything?” asked Jay in a disappointed, rather than angry, tone. “Yeah, that’s the only way that I beat you.” replied Adam, matter-of-factly. On most other Survivor seasons, this would have led to yelling, finger-wagging, and confessional name-calling. Here, it was followed up by the two grown men crying together on the hammock as Adam told Jay about his mother’s stage 4 lung cancer, and Jay opening up about his own mom’s brain aneurysm. And it ended with Jay — instead of being pissed off — telling us, “He’s not a weasel in my book anymore. He’s a warrior.”

This is next-level stuff, ladies and gentlemen. Instead of the ugliness of World’s Apart or Kaôh Rōng, we are getting fierce gameplay that rarely crosses any personal lines. For the most part, folks are doing battle and then genuinely respecting those who best them. It’s pretty refreshing to see. Now, don’t get me wrong: I love a good Survivor freak-out as much as the next guy. It’s good to see some emotion. It’s not as if I want this game to played by robots and never want to see anyone get angry ever again. (Although if this game were to be played by robots, I am totally calling Delores, Maeve, and Teddy as the final 3. Lock that prediction in now!) But it is a welcome change of pace. And with all the anger in the world lately, it’s nice to not have to watch it go down on my television set for at least one hour a week.

Ah, but the question is: How will that factor in when it comes to my reveal of the latest season-by-season Survivor rankings? That’s right, it’s the penultimate episode, which means it’s time to see where Millennials vs. Gen X falls. Stay tuned for that. But first, let’s recap the other big things that went down this episode.

Will’s Journey From Hero to Zero

I guess it’s sort of a given that almost every Survivor challenge will involve two of the following three things: balls, poles, and discs. Now, I don’t know if that’s done specifically to make me giggle like an idiot whenever Jeff Probst says those words, but I have to imagine it is. This first challenge involves the second two of the magic trifecta as players race out to a group of discs (snicker…snicker) and then stack as many as they can on their pole (hehe!), which must then be transported over a balance beam and through a wire maze. Then everyone must put their discs into a target, which sounds more scandalous than it really is.

Apparently, young Will is having trouble controlling his disc — sorry, couldn’t help it — as he falls out of the competition early, but Jay does a great job of handling his, climaxing by reaching his target in record speed! (Okay, I suppose I could have helped that one.)

That means Jay wins his third of the last four challenges and the immunity that goes with it. And Will, feeling a burst of pride and power over helping to get Zeke out, all of a sudden wants to control the shots. He says they should get rid of David. And you know what, he’s right! They should! (This, by the way, will be a running theme throughout the night.) He tells Adam. He tells Hannah. He tells Bret. He’s like a teenager showing off his brand-new driver’s license! Hey, check me out, everyone! I’m playing Survivor! Or is Survivor playing him?

NEXT: Will gets (high) schooled

That’s because Adam and Bret are over Will and his new power trip. They want him to go instead, and just need to get Hannah — who is having reservations for some reason, due to the fact she thinks Will saved them last vote (even though Adam also played his idol, so not really) — on board. We go to a rain-soaked Tribal Council, where a very interesting discussion in taking place. Hannah points out that almost everyone there has worked with and against everyone else — which is fascinating in itself — but what’s next is even more intriguing when you look at the current Survivor state of gameplay. Adam talks about the fact everyone wants to make a big move, but then once you make that big move, you become a big threat. He’s right. It’s the ultimate catch-22. You need to pad your résumé, but once you start padding that résumé, everyone wants you gone.

So now we get to the biggest question of all, something every future Survivor player should ask themselves before setting foot on the island: How can I make big moves without anyone realizing I am making big moves, but then credit me for the moves later, once they’re out of the game and realize I made them? That is an almost impossible needle to thread, and I look forward to seeing how future contestants attempt to deal with it. Does it mean we will get even more elevated gameplay, or end up with a bunch of goats at the end as all the real players pick each other off? We’ll see. (By the way, I asked Jeff Probst about this in our weekly Q&A and you can read his response there.)

Oh, so anyway, Will gets voted out. Because he tried to make a move. And so, this is what he gets. But good for Will. The dude was only 18 and in high school when this was filmed last spring. Now, whether he should have left high school to appear on a reality TV show is another matter entirely — personally, I would never let my son ditch school to do that — but he did not embarrass himself in the least out there, and embarrassing oneself on reality television is very easy for anyone to do, much less a teenager. So, well played, Will. Even if you ultimately got played.

Pinball Wizards

Will was right to want to get rid of David. He couldn’t pull it off, but surely the anxiety-riddled TV writer will be the next to go, as long as he doesn’t win immunity, right? Speaking of immunity, a really interesting second challenge we have here. At first, it looks simple: Solve a block puzzle. Okay, whatever. But au contraire, mon frère! Because those sneaky challenge producers have added in a “Survivor pinball table,” in which contestants must roll a ball and can work on the puzzle only while the ball is on the table. And if they do not catch the ball before it falls off the edge, they incur a time penalty in which they cannot work on their puzzle while the ball goes sloooooooowly to the bottom of a ramp.

Clever. Very clever. I dig the wrinkle. But while watching, I couldn’t help but wonder if there was a clever way to beat this challenge. That’s because you could see the players all clearly had their attention very divided between solving the puzzle and constantly looking back at the ball to judge its progress and see how much time they still had — and then often missing the ball anyway. So, it got me thinking: Could it just be faster to ignore the ball, work with 100 percent of your attention on the puzzle, and take the penalty whenever the ball dropped? Might that be faster than being able to only focus a few seconds at a time and then perhaps missing the ball anyway? I asked Probst about this in our Q&A and you can see his answer there. (Yes, I am always trying to game the system.)

But there was something else interesting about this challenge, and that was a decision by Adam. After Ken took the lead, Adam abandoned his own game to take position by Ken’s table and tell him whenever his ball was about to drop so the model could focus entirely on his puzzle. “Really, Adam?” was Jay’s reaction.

And mine too, kind of. That’s because Adam was openly rooting against someone by doing this. While watching, I thought Jay looked to be closest to beating Ken and figured he did not want Jay to win immunity so he was forced to use his idol, but Adam later said David was closest and did not want him to win. Either way, it was a bold move. But Adam was determined to get one of the two biggest threats — Jay or David — out of this game next. So, what could possibly stop that from happening now?

NEXT: Hannah sees strength in taking out weakness

How Is David Still in This Game?

Boy, things sure do get confusing once everyone gets back to camp. First, Dave concocts a plan with Ken and Hannah to flush Jay’s idol and vote out Bret. Then, Adam chats with Ken and Hannah and says he, too, is going to flush Jay’s idol — but wants them to vote for David, which makes all the sense in the world. Jay has an idol they need to get out of the game, and David is the other big threat so they need to get him out of the game. So, this should be an easy chance to kill two birds with one stone. (Preferably not a stone with any weird markings on it, because that could potentially have a hidden immunity idol inside. Perhaps they could use the black stone that also took out Jessica.)

But Hannah has other ideas. Hannah wants Sunday out. Essentially, she wants to keep a person who will beat her at the end to get rid of someone she actually might be able to beat. Her reasoning is if she convinces others to vote out Sunday, that makes her the type of person to win Survivor. The problem is, do you really want the credit for forcing everyone to make A BAD MOVE?! You only get credit for taking out a GOOD player, not the player from the other side whom all of you already think you can beat. That’s not a move, that’s just playing out the string.

Don’t get me wrong: I am psyched we get to keep a superior player/character like David for the finale. And I totally get Hannah thought they were safer numbers-wise with David in the game. Makes total sense. But this is not the type of thing you get “credit” for. Making a safe move is not a résumé builder. It’s not like you’re gonna sit there at the final Tribal Council going, “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I’d like to talk to you today — if I may — about the way I masterminded Sunday’s exit. It was days and days of careful planning that led up to what I can only assume will go down as one of the biggest Tribal Council moments ever. Who had the guts to take out Sunday? It was me. I had the guts. My guts and my guts alone. If that hasn’t earned your vote, I don’t know what will. The defense rests!”

And then there were six. Jay, David, and Adam would all seem to have good shots to take the million dollars in next week’s finale, and I’d put their chances of winning in that order. Bret, Ken, and Hannah can probably only win if they end up in a final three consisting of Bret, Ken, and Hannah. (Please, Lord, in the name of all that is good and holy, do not let that happen. I know I asked for a Medallion of Power for Christmas, but I will happily give that up for a Jay, David, and Adam final three.)

Okay, we need to get to the new season rankings now and see where Millennials vs. Gen X falls, but since the rankings tend to go on for a bit, here’s a reminder to read my weekly Q&A with Probst and to check out an exclusive deleted scene from the episode on the last page. Okey-dokey, let’s get it to it. Here are the latest rankings. Please feel free to put your own rankings in the comments section or just tell me what an idiot I am. Either one works.

NEXT: Let the Survivor season rankings begin!

SURVIVOR SEASON-BY-SEASON RANKINGS

(From best to worst)

1. (Tie) Survivor: Borneo

(Winner: Richard Hatch)

and Survivor: Micronesia — Fans vs. Favorites

(Winner: Parvati Shallow)

I’ve gone back and forth with these two over the years. After Micronesia aired, I named it the best Survivor season ever. Upon reflection, while I still considered it the most enjoyable, I also worried I was understating the impact of the first season, which became a national phenomenon. (Yes, Borneo now seems dated and tame by comparison, but it’s the biggest game-changer in the past 20 years of television.) So then I returned that to the no. 1 spot. If I wanted to watch one season again, it would be Micronesia. If you ask me which is the most important season, well, obviously it’s Borneo. So instead of constantly flipping them, they can simply share the top spot…until I change my mind again.

3. Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains

(Winner: Sandra Diaz-Twine)

The Russell vs. Boston Rob feud made for the best pre-merge run of episodes ever. And the greatness just kept on coming. Filled with huge memorable moments like Tyson voting himself off, J.T. giving Russell his immunity idol, and Parvati handing out two immunity idols at one Tribal Council. Loses a few points for having so many three-timers, though, including a few (Amanda, James) we simply didn’t need to see again. I know many people would consider this no. 1, but it’s all returnees. For me, the fresh blood of Micronesia keeps that season higher.

4. Survivor: Cagayan

(Winner: Tony Vlachos)

Quite simply, the best Survivor season ever with all new players since the very first one (which is only better by the fact it was the very first one). It was an intoxicating mix of terrific and terrible gameplay in which the big personalities (Tony, Spencer, Kass) weren’t just personalities — they were there to play the game. (Maybe not well at all times, but at least they were playing.) The casting was killer, the challenges were solid, the boot order was completely unpredictable, and the creative twists worked (although I was not a fan of the return of the post-votes read idol; thankfully that never came into play). The fact Woo inexplicably brought Tony to the end with him added one last great “WHAT THE HELL?!?” moment to a truly intoxicating season.

5. Survivor: Cambodia — Second Chance

(Winner: Jeremy Collins)

The first thing to note about Cambodia is how well all the production twists turned out. Letting fans vote in the cast? Brilliant. Hiding idols at challenges? I think you all know how I feel about that. Tempting people to quit an immunity challenge for a mystery vote-steal advantage? Loved it. All the tribe switcheroos? They played out to perfection. The Survivor producers always throw a bunch of twists out there. Usually, some work and some don’t. This season, they all paid dividends.

I also appreciated how hard the bulk of the cast was playing. Usually, you get a small handful of big-time gamers. This season you only had a handful who weren’t going hard (which, granted, is somewhat a function of returning player seasons in general). Another plus: The votes were completely unpredictable from week to week, leading to some truly crazy Tribals. Sure, the challenges were a bit blah, but still, a rousing and triumphant success.

6. Survivor: Amazon

(Winner: Jenna Morasca)

Probably the first truly unpredictable season ever from week to week. Some people hate on Jenna as a winner, but she won challenges and played an effective social game.

7. Survivor: Pearl Islands

(Winner: Sandra Diaz-Twine)

Rupert stealing shoes. Fairplay getting drunk at Tribal Council. Osten sucking at everything. It was all delicious. Loses points, though, for the awful Outcasts twist, which also led to a disappointing final two. (Lil? Seriously?)

8. Survivor: Palau

(Winner: Tom Westman)

I loved watching one tribe decimate the other, culminating with Stephenie becoming a tribe of one. And the challenges may have been Survivor’s best ever. What’s interesting about Palau is we basically all knew Tom would win from episode 1, but it was still gripping nonetheless.

9. Survivor: Millennials vs. Gen X

(Winner: ???)

With the exception of Caramoan, I’ve never had a season rise so much through the rankings from week to week. When Millennials vs. Gen X started, most of us were like, “Yeah, it’s fine. Not amazing, but not terrible either.” But then things kept happening. And everyone kept flipping on one another. And everyone kept getting blindsided. And everyone kept futilely using their idols for other people.

It was madness and chaos in the best way possible. And what was so fascinating was that (with the exception of Michaela) nobody took their ouster personally. This was a season remarkably free of any sort of fighting whatsoever. None of the ugliness of World’s Apart or Kaôh Rōng permeated the proceedings, even amongst all the lying and backstabbing. Everyone seemed to legitimately appreciate and respect the competition they were going up against, and as a result, so did we.

What seemed like a so-so cast at first ended up giving us a fair number of breakouts: Michaela, Zeke, David, Adam, Jay. Even Hannah was entertaining with her neuroses. Even Ken was entertaining with his recent cluelessness. Bret gave us a touching moment where he came out as gay to Zeke. Sunday outsmarted Adam and Hannah with a ruse at Tribal Council. Everyone contributed something.

As always, this could rise or fall a bit depending on what happens in the finale. But in a season that’s kept surprising us, is there any reason to think it won’t finish strong?

NEXT: More Survivor season rankings (10-19)

10. Survivor: Blood vs. Water

(Winner: Tyson Apostol)

The twist of returning contestants playing with/against their loved ones added new dimensions and forced players — and us — to think about the strategic elements of the game in an entirely new way. And for strategy nerds like myself, it was like opening a brand-new Christmas present each and every week as new layers were revealed.

And although I am certainly no fan of the Redemption Island twist — due to the fact it neuters the show’s most dramatic moment (the vote-off) — it is undeniable the RI element is what led to many of the intriguing strategic decisions of whom to vote out and why. (However, I still can’t figure out why they went with three person duels — a.k.a. truels — and they definitely should have stopped RI at the merge.) Yes, the challenges were a letdown and there was a bit of a lull just after the merge, but all in all, this was a super solid season from top to bottom and a nice change of pace.

11. Survivor: Philippines

(Winner: Denise Stapley)

This season was all about one thing: casting, casting, casting. When you look back on what happened, while there were a lot of shake-ups with the voting, there weren’t a whole lot of jaw-on-the-floor shocking moments. So why is it so high? Because the casting and story lines that developed gave us people to root for and against, something every great Survivor season needs. And the fact Philippines had such a strong final four also doesn’t hurt.

12. Survivor: Caramoan — Fans vs. Favorites

(Winner: John Cochran)

A tale of two seasons this was, and I can already hear people yelling that I’m putting it too high. But hear me out first before you Russell any feathers. If I was grading this solely on pre-merge episodes, this would be waaaay down the list due to the emphasis on big personalities (Shamar, Brandon, Phillip) as opposed to big gameplay. It was flat-out grating. But everything post-merge was spectacular. I can’t remember a time when there were so many moves and counter-moves so late in the season. The same way it’s more important for a sports team to play well in the second half of a game as opposed to the first, a great season needs to build momentum, and Caramoan definitely did that with six fantastic episodes in a row.

It’s much more important to finish strong than to start strong, so I definitely put more weight and emphasis on post-merge episodes when doing the rankings, and this season made a remarkable comeback. Also, don’t overlook how great the bevy of water challenges was. Should I push it down in the rankings due to the lackluster Reunion show that followed? Perhaps. Kind of not sure how much I should take that live show into consideration when ranking what happened out on the island.

13. Survivor: Samoa

(Winner: Natalie White)

I like this season a lot more than most people, but Russell’s controlling of the game (especially post-merge, when his side was down 8-4) was truly a work of art. Evil genius art. He was robbed in the end, though, in the most controversial jury decision ever.

14. Survivor: Marquesas

(Winner: Vecepia Towery)

An underrated season that saw the first totem pole shake-up: where people on the bottom got together to overthrow those on the top. Yes, it was a weak final two, but it also had a woman peeing on a guy’s hand. Plus: Purple rock!!!

15. Survivor: China

(Winner: Todd Herzog)

I’ve always loved this season. It featured a really good cast stuck in a really bad location. Todd completely owned that final Tribal Council. That’s how you win a million dollars.

16. Survivor: Cook Islands

(Winner: Yul Kwon)

What a difference a mutiny makes. It was listless until that fateful moment when Candice and Penner stepped off the mat. Then we finally had underdogs to root for. The Tribal Council fire-making tiebreaker between Sundra and Becky may be the funniest thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Plus, just look at all the great first-time contestants (Parvati, Penner, Ozzy, Yul). Mutineers must die!

17. Survivor: Australian Outback

(Winner: Tina Wesson)

An overrated season in my book. Probst loves it. I didn’t. Solid but unspectacular. Pretty predictable boot order as well. Dude did burn his hands off, though.

18. Survivor: South Pacific

(Winner: Sophie Clarke)

Here’s another one I like more than most people, which is curious considering how much it has in common with the season that aired directly before it, which I didn’t like: The same twist of two returning players, Redemption Island, the predictable vote-offs, no real water challenges, etc. But there is one thing I really did dig about this season, and that is the cast. I was invested in the players and their fates — the ones I wanted to do well and not so well. Plus, this season gave us three signature moments: Ozzy volunteering to go to Redemption, Cochran flipping, and Brandon giving away his immunity.

19. Survivor: Kaôh Rōng

(Winner: Michelle Fitzgerald)

Not one of the best seasons ever; not one of the worst. Working in this season’s favor was the sheer unpredictability from week to week in terms of who was aligned with whom and what would happen at Tribal Council. That’s always exciting. Working against this season is the fact there simply were not enough transcendent players in the cast. Talking to fellow fans of the show, I did not find a lot of passion or hardcore rooting interest for any of the folks who made it far in the game (especially after Tai sabotaged the tribe by putting out the fire). That’s a problem. Another problem was the selection of an underwhelming winner in Michele, as Aubry was denied at the end by an unsurprisingly bitter jury.

While the reward challenge that caused three players to collapse was certainly riveting (and scary as hell) to watch, it also robbed us of one of the most charismatic contestants in Beast Mode Cowboy, which was a shame. The other medical evacuations (Neal and Joe) meant we were denied chances to see how those pivotal votes would have gone down, and the challenges in general were at times too heavy reliant on balancing.

All that said, there were legitimate moments of glory — like when Tai turned on Scot and Jason — that elevated the proceedings and turned this season into a solid, if unspectacular, entry. (I originally had the season ranked as 16 out of 32, but then dropped it two slots after the finale, and then another to make way for Millennials vs. Gen X.)

NEXT: The rest of the rankings and an exclusive deleted scene

20. Survivor: Tocantins

(Winner: J.T. Thomas)

Okay, you may roll your eyes at Coach 1.0. But imagine for a second this season without him. Bo-ring! His unintentional comedy single-handedly lifted this into the middle of the pack. Seriously, other than Tyson getting blindsided, were there any memorable moments that didn’t involve the Steven Seagal wannabe?

21. Survivor: All-Stars

(Winner: Amber Brkich)

Overall, a bit of a letdown, but man, were there some hate-fueled fireworks at those final few Tribal Councils. Plus: Best. Reunion Show. Ever. (Remember Jerri getting literally booed off the stage?)

22. Survivor: Worlds Apart

(Winner: Mike Holloway)

The main problem, of course, was there were not enough people to root for. Worlds Apart got somewhat hijacked by an assault of offensive comments to and about women by some of the male characters. It’s too bad, because there was actually some interesting gameplay — mostly thanks to Mike. And there were some big moments at the last few Tribal Councils as well. This season has moved around a bunch for me. It started off middle-of-the-pack, went WAY down during all that Dan and Will ugliness, but slowly crept back up after that.

23. Survivor: Panama — Exile Island

(Winner: Aras Baskauskas)

Ah, just writing the word Panama gets me daydreaming about Survivor Sally and her intoxicating knee socks. Terry was robbed on a final challenge that may or may not have been completely fair. Another unmemorable final two. Shane Powers should have been brought back for Heroes vs. Villains. And the Second Chance season, for that matter.

24. Survivor: Gabon

(Winner: Bob Crowley)

It got better near the end, but it was still a case of too little, too late. The fact so many unworthy players went so far is simply too damning.

25. Survivor: Redemption Island

(Winner: Boston Rob Mariano)

The first three episodes were dynamite, but then the fuse blew out. It certainly was entertaining at times watching Rob strategize (the most dominant showing ever) and Phillip philosophize (the craziest showing ever), just not very dramatic. Most of the vote-offs were clearly telegraphed and the Redemption Island twist sucked the life out of Survivor’s signature moment — the vote-off.

26. Survivor: Africa

(Winner: Ethan Zohn)

Some great challenges. Not that much else was great.

27. Survivor: Guatemala

(Winner: Danni Boatwright)

One of the more unlikable casts so far. (Remember Judd? Jamie? Stephenie’s evil twin?) Rafe was good for a few laughs, though. Especially on rope obstacles.

28. Survivor: Vanuatu

(Winner: Chris Daugherty)

I don’t blame producers: The battle of the sexes worked well the first time around.

29. Survivor: San Juan del Sur

(Winner: Natalie Anderson)

The cast was for the most part boring if not boorish, and when you look back on this season, does any one big moment even stand out? Anything? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller? I will say there were a few strong post-merge episodes, and it definitely got better over the last few weeks thanks to Natalie’s strong play. That counts for something. This is not a season that inspires anger or rage, just apathy, which is maybe the worst indictment of all.

30. Survivor: One World

(Winner: Kim Spradlin)

Look, I have total respect for Kim’s game. Like Tom in Palau and Rob in Redemption Island, she excelled strategically, socially, and physically. Unfortunately, that is really the only good thing I can say about this season. And that’s too bad, because I do think the “One World” concept was a solid one. But, man, what a thoroughly uninspiring cast. Colton was more a horrible human being than a classic villain, and the rest of the players were mostly either completely forgettable or people you wish you could forget. I worry I am being generous by putting it even this high, but out of respect for Kim, it goes here.

31. Survivor: Thailand

(Winner: Brian Heidik)

The fake merge and brutal last challenge — where the final three had to hold coins between their fingers in a crazy painful pose — keep this dud out of the bottom spot. Barely.

32. Survivor: Fiji

(Winner: Earl Cole)

With the exception of Yau-Man and Earl, a true bummer of a cast and the “Haves Vs. Have-Nots” twist were some of the worst creative decisions in Survivor history. Speaking of awful creative decisions…

33. Survivor: Nicaragua

(Winner: Jud “Fabio” Birza)

It’s at the bottom for a few reasons. 1) Splitting the tribes up by age and the Medallion of Power were both enormous flops. 2.) Like One World, Thailand, and Fiji, Nicaragua had just too many unlikable players. 3) Two people quitting with only 11 days left. 4) No big memorable moments. Even Thailand had the fake merge and Fiji had the big Yau-Man/Dreamz free-car deal gone bad, but what was Nicaragua’s signature moment? Unfortunately, it was people quitting, and that was memorable for all the wrong reasons.

Okay, that’s gonna do it. Once again, make sure to read my weekly Q&A with Hostmaster General Jeff Probst (who, FYI, will also be appearing on Life in Pieces Thursday night when one of the characters tries out for Survivor), and check out the exclusive deleted scene below. We’ll also have the ousted Will and Sunday on EW Morning Live (SiriusXM, channel 105) on Thursday morning. And for more Survivor scoop, follow me on Twitter @DaltonRoss.

Now it’s your turn. Whom are you rooting for tin win Survivor: Millennials vs. Gen X? And where would you rank the season? Hit the message boards to let us know and I’ll be back next week with a triple scoop of finale/reunion crispy!

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