Survivor Caramoan – Fans Vs. Favorites Finale Recap: Last Push

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It has been a wild and unpredictable season of Survivor and now it has come to an end.  We only have five people left in the running–Cochran, the Harvard Law School nerd, Dawn, the overly emotional mom, Erik, the Fan turned Favorite, Eddie, the last Amigo standing, and Sherri.  Who will ultimately outwit, outplay, and outlast the rest and become the new sole Survivor?

As soon as the final five leave the last Tribal Council where Brenda was voted off, Erik feels weird and he complains that his head hurts and he seems dizzy.  Jeff Probst immediately checks in on Erik and paramedics come over shortly.  The doctors tell Jeff that Erik’s BP is decreasing and his body is malnourished and dehydrated.  It’s a good thing that Eddie, a firefighter and EMT, can explain everything to Erik.  Unfortunately, Erik’s BP continues to alarmingly drop that the doctor has no choice but to pull Erik from the game.  Oh no Erik!  For the second time you are so close to the finals!  Had you stayed longer, you might have a great chance to be a part of the final three!

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Erik Reichenbach is the sixteenth person to leave Survivor: Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites and becomes the seventh member of the jury.

And now there are four castaways left and three days left in the game.

Cochran, Eddie, Sherri and Dawn are all shocked to see Erik go at a very critical stage in the game.  But as what they say, the show (and game) must go on.  Cochran’s next plan is to get Eddie on his side before anybody else because he thinks that Eddie has a better chance at winning challenges.  He talks with Eddie about the Eddie-Cochran-Sherri final three and he agrees.  I still can’t believe Eddie is still in the game!  I think he is the luckiest guy ever!

On day 37, Enil Edam receives a tree mail and to their delight, it’s a Reward Challenge!

FINAL REWARD CHALLENGE

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While one hand is used to balance a board, one castaway must use the other hand to build a tower of cards, high enough to reach a finish mark.  The winner wins an advantage to the final Immunity Challenge.  Cochran and Sherri are off to a fast start, but their towers come crashing down simultaneously, creating an opening for Dawn and Eddie to catch up.

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After several card tumbles from all four castaways, it is Cochran who stacks his final card to get him to the finish line.  Cochran wins his third individual challenge!

Back at camp, Cochran feels glad that he is actually a formidable player when it comes to challenges.  Meanwhile, Sherri gets a chance to talk with Eddie.  I think it’s about time to make amends!  Sherri admits to Eddie that she feels more comfortable having him and Cochran in the finals instead of Dawn.  She thinks that Dawn has played the card of a sympathetic player and she is most likely the person to beat, well unless the jury thinks that Dawn is such a cry-baby.  Eddie agrees that Dawn is the one to beat.  Back at camp, Dawn remains to be paranoid that Sherri and Eddie are left alone in the woods talking about strategy.  Cochran reassures Dawn that they are locked in for the final three with Sherri.  But in fact, Cochran is already fed up with Dawn’s frequent paranoia spells, saying, “On day 37, she should be paranoid, because I am considering ditching her.” LOL.

FALLEN COMRADES

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On day 38, the final four receive a tree mail, informing them that a boat is arriving to take them to the Survivor Rites of Passage Walk, or better known to all Survivor fans as the traditional Fallen Comrades Ceremony.  The boat brings them to an island where all the torches from all the eliminated castaways — from Francesca to Erik — are lined up for them to pay tribute.  They gather all the nameplates and burn them on a redesigned bonfire.  For a fan like Sherri, she admits that The Rites of Passage Ceremony is like a dream come true for her.

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FINAL IMMUNITY CHALLENGE

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The final four arrive at the final Immunity Challenge area.  The castaways must climb a three-story building, untie a bag of puzzle pieces, slide back to the starting point, then head back to get the second bag of puzzle pieces located at next level of the tower.  Once they have retrieved all three bags, they must solve a puzzle that resembles a fire. Then Cochran reads his reward.  His advantage is that the bags of puzzle pieces are already untied and Cochran will not have to untie them, saving him a significant amount of time.  As expected, Cochran retrieves all the bags first while Eddie and Dawn are neck and neck for second place.  Sherri remains trailing at the back of the pack.  However, by the time Eddie and Dawn head back with their third bag, Cochran is not able to place any of his puzzle pieces.

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And the race is on.  Dawn seems to the one leading as she places three puzzle pieces ahead of everybody.  Sherri also manages to place a piece quickly, so is Cochran.  Eddie is clueless with the puzzle.  Cochran seems to get the hang of it as he overtakes Dawn in the lead.  Eddie, with a smile on his face, is able to place a piece!  C’mon Eddie pick up the pace!

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In the end, it is Cochran who place the final piece the first and wins his fourth, I repeat, fourth individual challenge win and earns a coveted spot in the finals!

Back at camp, Cochran is thrilled and excited about his wins.  He now considers himself as the winner of Survivor and now thinks about who is deserving to be his runner-up!  He is such a boastful guy, yet remains to be cool and witty about it!  Later, Eddie pleads his case to Cochran about keeping him in the finals over Dawn.  He feels that nobody would vote for an idiot guy without a perfect strategy and who only voted one castaway out of the game.  Eddie actually has a point.

TRIBAL COUNCIL

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When Erik left, Eddie admits that has a better shot in making it to the finals, since he has heard the the final three would have been Dawn, Sherri, and Erik.  Dawn then pleads her case.  She feels that it is logical to keep her because nobody in the jury would vote for her since she is part of the blindsiding of some of the castaways.  She also reminds everyone that Eddie is liked by most of the jury.  Eddie responds that he is not a strategic threat.  Eddie and Sherri make a last request of keeping them in the final three.  C’mon Fans, gang up on Dawn!

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Eddie Fox is the seventeenth person to leave Survivor: Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites and the eighth and final member of the jury.

What more can I say?  Eddie has come a long way!  He had no strategy, has been in the minority alliance since day 1 and has always been on the chopping block ever since, he is relatively useless in challenges and he comes in fourth place.  Good for him!

So the final three are Cochran and Dawn. And oh, Sherri.  Based on those three, I think Cochran has a nice shot at winning.  And the odds in Sherri are not in her favor.

On the final day at camp, they are thrilled to find a feast waiting for them at the tree mail.  As they eat their food, everyone feels proud of what they have accomplished in the game.  Dawn and Cochran reminisce about the decisions they have made together, and they also realize that they have played Survivor for a total of 67 days!  Later, Cochran feels that he is happy of what he has done, but still remains nervous about the final tribal council.  He admits that this is his game to lose.  I agree.  Sherri, Dawn, and Cochran pack their things and torches as they head out to the Final Tribal Council.

FINAL TRIBAL COUNCIL

For their opening statements, Dawn admits that she is the most emotional person in the game. She also recalls the strong and loyal partnership that she had with Cochran that made them successful in the game.  She admits that she achieved her goal of controlling her own game by making hard and cold decisions.  Sherri speaks next and she chokes!  I think she wants to point out that she is not just a wife and a mother, but also a businesswoman and she wanted to consider the game of Survivor as her business, or something like that.  Cochran is the last one to have an opening statement.  He considers his game play as a culmination of his 13 years of being passionate about the show.  He also talks about how play the right moves at the perfect timing.  And now the interaction between the jury and the final three begins.

Malcolm warns Dawn to be as honest as possible and be as cold as she can be because that is how she played her game — a cold-blooded game.  Malcolm then asks Cochran about that quality that he has that led him to the end of the game.  Cochran’s answers, “Heightened level of insecurity,” because when he felt a threat, he voted that person out of the game.  He feels that Malcolm did not have that trait.

Eddie asks Sherri if she believes that she was just carried to the final three.  Sherri disagrees.  Well I think what Eddie’s trying to say is true.  She is just rode coattails and did nothing to make her deserving of the title.  That’s the truth.  Eddie thinks that Dawn has been so paranoid and emotional all throughout the game and not as strong as what she was claiming.  Dawn admits that the game took a toll on her but she stresses that she did make hard decisions along the way.  Eddie congratulates Cochran and ask him how the game will affect his life afterwards.  Cochran agrees and he now sees himself as a grown man who would go out with the guys (specifically the Tres Amigos) and be more sociable and more confident.  It would be cool to see Cochran going out with Eddie or Malcolm while digging chicks at the bar! Haha!

It’s Phillip’s turn.  He also congratulates Sherri for infiltrating the Stealth ‘R Us alliance, but he suddenly revokes her membership to the elite group!  Now that’s funny.  He then admits to Dawn that he did not enjoy her constant paranoia that became detrimental to the others’ life at camp.  After that he congratulates Cochran for a job well done and considers Cochran as a class act.

Erik admits to Dawn that he felt crushed when they voted out Brenda.  Dawn assures Erik that all the relationship that she has made were genuine, though she also used the said relationships for her own advancement in the game.  Erik then tries to make Sherri realize that she just rode coattails to the end.  Sherri immediately interrupts Erik and tells her that she does not need his vote!  What Sherri?  That’s the stupidest thing I heard during a final tribal council!  She is plain rude to Erik while Erik is trying to be nice and honest!

Michael is next.  Michael stresses that it’s Dawn and Cochran who were running the same game plan, but insists that Dawn is perceived as the villain.  Dawn thinks that she had played a bigger and better job than Cochran for she was the one making relationship with people while making strategic decisions on the side.  Cochran fires back, saying, “If I hadn’t become your therapist, I don’t think you would be still in this game.”  Again, another witty response from the Harvard geek!

Then it’s Reynold’s turn.  I think he has been drinking all the way to the final tribal council.  He points out Dawn as a fraud and challenges her to honestly describe him in three words.  Gosh he is funny…and drunk.

Andrea asks Cochran to pick an animal that best describes him and his game.  Cochran chooses a chameleon because he thinks he can change and adapt his decision as quickly  as possible and as needed in the game.  She then congratulates Dawn and thinks that their game plans were similar.

And then there’s Brenda.  She admits that she was hurt when she was voted out.  She admits to Cochran that she was hurt when she was voted out after she gave him the reward with the loved ones.  Cochran calmly explains that he tried to separate the game from his emotion and considers Brenda as a threat, hence her elimination.  Brenda then reminisce the moment when she helped Dawn with her missing teeth.  At that time, Dawn wanted to quit if she totally lost the teeth, then Brenda found it.  Brenda thinks that at that time, Dawn’s life in the game was at her hand, and she saved it.  Dawn assures Brenda that she would not have quit if Brenda had not found her teeth.  Brenda now challenges Dawn to remove her teeth to prove that it’s not that important to her and to let Dawn feel that her game is still at Brenda’s hand.  If she removes it, Brenda would vote for her.  Dawn hesitates but still obliges to do it.  Poor Dawn.  I think this is just unethical.  What Brenda asked of Dawn is inhumanely low.  I feel extremely bad for Dawn, I really do.

There are no final statements and the jury votes.

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Jeff Probst reads the results of the votes in front of a live audience in Los Angeles with a unanimous decision:

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John Cochran WINS the title of Sole Survivor and the million dollar prize for SURVIVOR: CARAMOAN FANS VS FAVORITES 2

I am glad that the ultimate fan of the show becomes the ultimate winner of Survivor.  It has been a crazy season of Survivor, probably one of the most memorable ones back-to-back, and of course it happened again in the Philippines (another proud moment right there).  I think after Yul (Cook Islands), Parvati (Micronesia – Fans vs Favorites), JT (Tocantins) and Kim (One World), another rightful person wins Survivor.  Congratulations COCHRAN!

Oh btw, I HATED the Reunion!!!  Why did they let the other pre-merge castaways sit with the audience?  I mean, they are also a big part of the season nevertheless!  And why did they have to focus more on Boston Rob and his book, Rudy and his bromance with Richard Hatch and that little girl? I mean, c’mon!

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