Survivor South Pacific Season Finale Recap

Sophie finds out she wins (Photo courtesy of

First of all, I want to apologize for not doing a recap of last Wednesday’s episode, finals caught up with me in a big way.  In short, last week before the immunity challenge, Rick, Coach, and Sophie had all decided to vote off Brandon at the next tribal- he was becoming too much of a threat.  At the immunity challenge, however, Brandon won, throwing a wrench in the three’s plans.  Conveniently, at the same time all of Albert’s devious schemings caught up to him and it became clear he was the next to go.  Albert, scrambling, convinced Brandon “as a Christian man” to forgive him.  At tribal, Brandon gave Albert the immunity necklace to protect him.  Unable to see any other option, the three others reverted back to the original plan, voting off Brandon. Basically, Albert looked like a terrible person.

Sunday night, as I sat down to watch the finale from my couch at home, I realized how insane it is that Sophie has made it this far.  I started watching this season just to see Sophie and support Middkids, but as I explained what had happened in the season to my parents, I realized that this show is actually a crazy test of strength, both mentally and physically- which makes it all the more impressive that Sophie did so well.  That being said, this two hour finale was DRAMATIC- Very exciting. I was a little too excited actually. Also, this is long, sorry I’m not sorry.

Brandon and Ozzy's duel

Ozzy kicked off the episode with a pretty appropriate analysis of Brandon’s game play in the tribal the night before.  “Brandon’s trying to play this game like he’s playing with God. He’s not playing with God, he’s playing with greedy people who want money.  That’s the game.” THANK YOU OZZY.

This season has had, in my opinion, an uncomfortable amount of weight put on religion, with many of the contestants using God to justify their actions or thanking God for victories.  Many of them seemed to have forgotten that this is a game in which deceptiveness and cunning are not only expected, but required to do well.  While loyalties are important, eventually it is an individual game and you will have to vote off people you were friends with.

Anyway, with that in mind, the episode began with the final Redemption Island duel.  Ozzy and Brandon fought it out in what has to be one of the hardest duels yet- hold onto a pole, without holds, for as long as possible. While both put up a good fight, Brandon ultimately lost, putting Ozzy back in the game and justifiably terrifying all of the other remaining contestants.

After the jump… everything else. 

Back on the mainland, the strange Coach/Ozzy alliance resurfaced, starting a decent amount of drama where none was needed. Before any of that was necessary, the contestants competed in the second to last immunity challenge- build a house of cards while balancing the platform it rests on.  Despite having a book on how to build houses of cards, Sophie did not win the challenge, losing to Ozzy (ruh roh…)  In the tribal debates, Coach’s individual immunity necklace and Albert’s poor decisions the previous episode essentially ensured that both would move on, leaving Sophie and Rick.  Ultimately, it came down to who is more likely to beat Ozzy in the final immunity challenge and after a tearful emotional breakdown where Sophie defended herself against accusations of being a stuck-up brat, she ended up on top, beating out Rick 2-3 in the vote.

The final immunity challenge arena, from above.

After the break, Ozzy revealed his not-so-master plan for the game to the cameramen.  Plan A? Win.  Plan B? Win.  Awesome.  After another confusing Coach/Ozzy pow wow, the final four head to the last immunity challenge. The winner would receive immunity from tribal, essentially a guaranteed ticket to the final three.  The stakes were thus: if Ozzy won the challenge, he would 100% win the million dollars, guaranteed.  The only way anyone else had a hope was if they beat Ozzy here.  The challenge was a rope course race for five puzzle bags and then a complicated puzzle game to finish it off.  Although Ozzy had an early lead, Sophie caught up to him and finished the puzzle first, winning immunity.  I believe my notes here are: OMG OMG OMG OMG SOPHIE’S GOING TO THE FINAL OMG WHEW.  Again, my exuberance gets the best of me.

Despite the manufactured drama of whether or not Coach was going to make the stupidest decision in his life, it came as no surprise that at tribal, Ozzy was voted out, leaving Albert, Coach, and Sophie in the final three.

FINAL TRIBAL: Each player was given the chance to defend themselves and plead their case as to why they deserve a million dollars.  Albert’s argument? He’s a social player, made connections with people, and has played the best social strategy.  Coach? He is a changed man, played the game as best he could, and took inspiration from the people around him (?) Finally, Sophie argued that she held her own in challenges, was an honest player, and only deceived people when she felt it was absolutely necessary.

Jeff reveals the votes, Photo Credit: Greg Gaynes/CBS

As the jury members each asked their questions, it became clear that Albert was the obvious enemy (shocker) and that it was down to Coach and Sophie.  Although Coach made a pretty passionate speech that seemed to convince some jury members, Sophie’s logical approach and admittance of her flaws won the jury over.  It seemed what the jury wanted to hear was, yes I deceived you, here is how I did it.  In the end, as we know, Sophie beat out Coach 6-3 to earn the title of sole survivor.  AAAAAAA.

I started watching this show just to see Sophie, as a weird thing for Middblog, figuring I would stop whenever she got out, but then she just kept on winning. Congratulations Sophie, you earned it.  Way to rep Midd.

Here’s a link to an interview of Sophie with Reality TV World.


One thought on “Survivor South Pacific Season Finale Recap

  1. I’ve been watching Survivor since season 1.

    Sophie’s win is what the show’s all about. She assessed the situation early and correctly. Rose to the occasion when it was critical. Adjusted strategy adroitly throughout.

    She wisely allied with a creepy ring-leader (cult leader) who thought he was leading her (along with 5 other minions…and numbers are important)…but, as she only revealed at the end, it was her leading him all along.

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