Survivor S40 Power Rankings (Top 11 + 8 EoE)
Mar 31, 2020
- Unfortunately, we saw the Queen of Survivor raise the mast and head home, as Sandra decided that sitting on an island and losing a challenge wasn’t what she signed up for. I don’t blame her. She wasn’t going to win, and even if she miraculously pulled off a challenge win, I doubt anyone would have let her get anywhere close to the final three anyway. I respect her decision. This does not tarnish the fact that she did win twice, and she did it against a group of both winners AND non-winners, something not even the winner of this season can say they did. She is a legend, and love her or hate her, you have to acknowledge her incredible legacy on the game. We also saw Yul head to extinction, continuing the trend of Old School players sent packing, after he got a bit confident and too strategic in the way he was talking about fire tokens. With the merge approaching, I truly don’t know what will happen, as there are so many people with interwinding relationships out there. Tony is friends with Sarah who is close to Sophie who was in an alliance with Nick and Wendell who voted with Michele, who was tight with Jeremy who is now tight with Kim and Denise and Denise is close to Adam who has a love/hate relationship with Ben who is also in a tight relationship with Sarah and Sophie, and remember when Sophie was given part of an idol by Kim? See what I mean? OH YEAH, and also, there’s going to be an Edge of Extinction Returnee. Totally forgot! Okay, let’s rank this incredibly complex group of people.
11. Wendell Holland- Wendell has only been getting more and more villainous content. I feel like Yul was the glue keeping Wendell and Nick with Sophie, and now that Yul is gone, I worry that Sophie is going to just hitch along with Sarah and Ben, and leave Nick and Wendell in the dust. Out of the trio of Nick, Wendell, and Michele, it seems like Nick and Michele were the ones communicating the most in the vote, and I worry that puts Wendell on the outs. He’s been such a big part of the story recently that I worry he might be the merge boot. We’ve seen in so many seasons (Ghost Island with Chris Noble, last season with Kellee) that the merge boot is a big pre-merge presence, and Wendell’s huge story line with Michele seems like it’ll be wrapped up at some point, and this week could finally be it. Not to mention, he’s also probably the best one in agility based challenges, so getting him out would not only get out the “villain” of the season, but a HUGE challenge threat, which early merge boots typically also fit into. I just feel like there’s the most working against Wendell.
10. Adam Klein- Adam probably won’t seem as threatening as Wendell will at first glance, but I worry that Adam has nobody on his side. In his old Sele tribe, Denise was really the only person who truly had his back, and on this new tribe, it seems like Sophie, Sarah, and Ben are all against him. Adam dug himself a bit of a grave by creating all of the idol paranoia last week, so I worry that it might come back to bite him. While it didn’t seem like such a huge deal, the confessional of Adam saying “I’m gonna feel really stupid if I’m wrong” gives me a LOT of worry. The editors included it for a reason. Adam could just be too paranoid, and people may just take him out as the easy vote. In his original season, the merge is where Adam got a bit of heat for the Taylor situation, and while Adam recovered, he was in the pits for a bit of time early in the merge. The good news for Adam, that puts him a smidgen above Wendell, is that Adam could be seen as a swing vote. He could be the one people go to as an extra number, whereas Wendell seems like someone who is a bit harder to bond with this season because he has a bit more of an attitude.
9. Tony Vlachos- Tony lucked out with an immunity win. Had Wendell put the puzzle piece in a smidge earlier, Tony is going home and becomes the last juror. But Tony is here at the merge. We haven’t seen Tony play in the merge since Cagayan, and I’m wondering if Tony is going to switch up his game this time around. I think linking up with Sarah to make Cops R Us again is the best move for Tony. My only worry is that a strong duo is great, but that’s only two people out of a total 12, and Sarah has a steal-a-vote on her side. Tony is easily going to be a big threat in this merge and has little protection. He is also going to need a really good social game coming into the merge. If he can gain a few more allies and rekindle the alliance with Sarah, I think he could surprise lots of people. It’s going to depend on how he handles this first day of the merge.
8. Nick Wilson- Like I said with Wendell, I worry that getting rid of Yul puts Nick and Wendell a bit more on the outside than if they had Yul going into the merge. Yul was so tight with people like Sophie, Sarah, and even had relationships with Tony and Kim. I’m worried old Dakal members might feel betrayed by Nick and Wendell. Luckily for Nick, Wendell is a much bigger threat. But Nick still got out Yul, and is going to have to explain to someone like Sophie why he did it. Nick decided to start making some moves last week, and now he’s in it for the long haul. It’ll be interesting to see how the most recent winner fares in his second merge.
7. Michele Fitzgerald- Michele has been a big focus of the season, and I can’t help but think that she’s going to be a long term player in the game. Out of the trio of Nick, Wendell, and Michele, she’s probably the least threatening, and has the best ability of making friends. She is also the only one who didn’t necessarily “betray” Yul, as she was never in an alliance with him anyway. Even by an edit standpoint, the edit has clearly been making us dislike some of Wendell’s antics and even had people like Tyson and Yul call Nick lazy around camp. This bodes well for Michele. She also has the relationship with people like Ben, Denise, and Jeremy from Sele. I think Michele will be okay in the merge, and while her trio of Wendell, Nick, and herself may be targeted, I doubt she’ll be the first one they target.
6. Denise Stapley- Denise no longer has an idol, but Jeremy and Kim seem to have her back, and the only person who has been truly taking her move seriously is Tony. She made one of the biggest moves in Survivor history and took out the Queen, and really didn’t get much heat for it. That’s why I love Denise. She’s always going to be underestimated. She’s never going to be the primary target (the only reason she was targeted a few weeks ago is because she was the weak odd woman out, but in a merge scenario, it helps to be seen as a bit weaker). I don’t think Denise is weak, and I think she could surprise a lot of people. The only place where I worry for Denise is if she tries too hard to stick up for Adam, who is clearly on the outs, but even then, I think Denise is self-aware enough to cut ties when need be.
5. Ben Driebergen- Ben is incredibly tight with Sophie and Sarah, which is good. I think linking up with them was the best decision for him, even if I think they’re two far superior players and strategists than Ben. I worry that Adam may try to get people to turn against Ben, but in almost every pre-merge scenario, people seem to side with Ben over Adam. Ben should be fine going forward for a few weeks.
4. Sophie Clarke- Sophie has an idol, so she isn’t going anywhere. Her pre-merge was pretty flawless. Adam wasn’t able to figure out that she had an idol, and she’s got a loyal Sarah and Ben backing her up. What else does she have going for her? She knows about Kim’s idol. What does Sophie have working against her? Her best friend Yul was just booted from the game, and two people she thought she was in an alliance with (Nick and Wendell) had a hand in it. Yul was her “nerd shield.” Without Yul, is Sophie a more visible threat? I honestly think she’ll be okay, but this may tarnish her relationship with Nick and Wendell a bit, and should Sophie seek vengeance, it may put her in a more threatening position than she was before. I have her pretty high up here, but not in the top three because of these reservations I have and the unknown about how she’ll recoup from Yul’s blindside.
3. Sarah Lacina- Sarah has Ben and Sophie in one corner, Tony in the other, and if my prediction is right, Tyson returning could rekindle that bond too. We see Sarah playing a much more socially based game this time around, and it’s really impressive to see. With this vote steal, I think Sarah holds a lot of power, and I don’t see any reason to target her right now.
2. Jeremy Collins- Jeremy is in a pretty great position. He’s sort of playing the same game this time around, and it’s really working in his favor. Now that Dakal didn’t have to go to tribal council, maybe he can continue using Tony as a shield. He has the connection with Denise and Kim on his tribe, and Michele from his old tribe. Jeremy hasn’t made many flashy moves thus far, but seems to have been a key part of every decision made and every boot that he has been involved with since being blindsided at the Natalie vote in the very first episode. He’s had a great turn around and seems to be in a pretty solid position.
1. Kim Spradlin-Wolfe- Kim was never really super tight with anyone pre-merge, but finally found an alliance with Jeremy and Denise. Out of those three, I think Kim is the safest. She was a huge threat going into the season, but this pre-merge has minimized her target level, I think. Being on the outs at the beginning was the best thing to ever happen to Kim, and while I do think she is one of the show’s most dominant winners, I don’t think many people are viewing Kim as the threat that she was in the premiere. She’s already in an amazing position, and has an idol to back her up.
I think the alliances of Kim, Jeremy, Denise and Sarah, Ben, Sophie are the most solid headed into this merge. The trio of Wendell, Nick, and Michele may have a bit more trouble because Wendell and Nick just voted off one of their own alliance members in Yul. Adam may be in trouble because he’s on his own with barely any alliance. Tony is in trouble because he’s TONY! And then there’s the Edge returnee, who could either sail through and be a number for someone, or easily go out in a revolving door. It’ll be interesting, nonetheless, but the way they’ve been setting Wendell up, I feel like he’s bound to get taken out sooner rather than later. I’m sticking to the prediction of Wendell going home.
Going Home- Wendell Holland
And now for the EXTINCTION ISLAND rankings:
8. Amber Mariano- Amber has really been pretty silent on the Edge, and has zero challenge history that seems to back up any chance of her beating any of the other 7 people here. I love Amber, but she’s a cheerleader for Rob right now, and may as well help him out and give him some tokens.
7. Danni Boatwright- Where has Danni been this season? If she’s going to return, I’d expect her to get a bit more content. I just don’t see it happening for her. It’s a shame that someone we’ve waited so long to see play again from such an underrated season is going to be the least edited person on the cast for this season.
6. Parvati Shallow- Parvati had a really great episode with her talk with Ethan. I do, however, think that this was purely in support of Ethan’s story, and not necessarily her own. I just don’t see her coming back right now. Maybe if she continues getting lots of airtime on Edge, she could be our returnee later on in a second Edge challenge, but right now, it’s looking slim.
5. Ethan Zohn- Ethan had a super positive moment. All of these Ethan moments would lead me to believe that he was coming back into the game…if it wasn’t Ethan. I think, because it’s Ethan, the editors want us to see as much emotional content as we can. If it was anyone else but Ethan, I don’t know if we’d see as much emotional content. I think Ethan’s journey in the game of Survivor is over, but there is still a lot more story left to tell on the Edge, and that’s where a lot of his emotional content will continue to come from. I do love how we’re seeing lots of Ethan, as he is just one of the greatest people to play this game.
4. Yul Kwon- Yul is fresh on Edge, which means he could either be on an adrenaline high and ready to get right into a challenge or he’ll be a bit shaken up. Yul always seems so calm, however, and I feel like his chances are better than some. I just don’t know if he can hang with top challenge threats like Tyson, Rob, or Natalie.
3. Natalie Anderson- Natalie is probably the most likely on paper to return from a strength aspect. I just worry that she has been pretty minimal in screen time for the past few episodes. She was heavily shown with the fire tokens, until more and more people started finding tokens or utilizing the tokens for strategy. I’m just worried Natalie was important in introducing the idea of fire tokens, but really won’t have much more of an effect going forward.
2. Rob Mariano- Rob found three tokens! He went into beast mode, and if he utilizes these tokens properly, he really may be able to get back in. I think Rob has been a bit scrappier in challenges this season, but when Rob is down to the wire, I think Rob gets it done. He could very well return, and the only thing separating him and Tyson is a jar of protein filled peanut butter.
1. Tyson Apostol- Tyson buying the peanut butter was striking at first glance…but they could’ve made Tyson look a lot stupider for buying the peanut butter, and the edit made it seem like a really wise decision in order to keep up his protein and energy. The fact that this peanut butter decision has been showcased in a more positive light makes me believe that Tyson is going to win this challenge. He’s already really good in challenges, and even risked going to rocks on Blood vs. Water BECAUSE he knew he could win a challenge to come back on redemption island. He’s confident, and I think he’s going to be really calm and collected and stress free in this challenge. Will he be able to last long once he rejoins the game? I’m not sure. But I think he’ll get that shot. How can I root against my pre-season winner pick?
Returning to the Game- Tyson
Returning to Extinction Island- Natalie, Amber, Danni, Ethan, Rob, Parvati, and Yul
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