Survivor Review: To Benry Or Not To Benry

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The big question after tonight’s episode of Survivor “I’m Not Sure Where I Stand” is whether Sash choose the correct alliance or not.  His options were Chanely (Chase, Jane and Holly) or Dudry (Dan, Jud and Benry). 

Sash Relaxes

Although Sash openly shopped his vote seemingly looking for the best bidder, Sash appeared to make up his mind fairly quickly and even stayed with Chanely after Chase burned him by not selecting him to go on the reward challenge.  Sash’s mind likely told him that shopping was his best bet, but his heart told him he couldn’t trust Dudry.

Is that true?  Did Sash make the right choice?  Let’s break down the pros and cons of both alliances.

Chanely (Chase, Jane and Holly)

  • Chase is only real threat to win individual immunity prior to the final immunity.
  • The trio appears much more trustworthy than Dan, Jud and Benry.


  • Jane’s a HUGE threat to win the final immunity.
  • Jane’s a HUGE threat to win the game.
  • There’s no obvious choice to eliminate to squeeze into the final three.
  • All three seem equally aligned with each other.

Dudry (Dan, Jud and Benry)


  • Dan is a non-factor in challenges and to win the game.
  • No overwhelming favorite to win among trio.
  • Not nearly as cohesive as Chanely, opportunities to break in.
Holly Laughs at Benry


  • Benry can’t be trusted.
  • Benry and Jud are threats to win challenges.
  • Because he’s not a threat, Dan’s an automatic for the final three, leaving just two spots.

In the words of LeBron James, ‘what should [Sash] do?’  Perhaps it’s easy to see and know as the viewer, but Chase, Holly and Jane are not going to take Sash to the finals.  Even if they should. 

Even if we take out that piece of viewer information, I still think Dudry is the better choice.  The second and third pros listed are huge.  There are opportunities for Sash to work with any of those three to turn on the others and give him a 25% chance of winning.  At the same time, there’s no one Sash simply has to eliminate from getting to the final three, like there is with Jane.  This gives Sash (and Benry, Jud and Dan) more options. 

But Sash chose Chanely so let’s move forward and evaluate what his game plan should be.  How does he break that seemingly unbreakable three-way alliance?  I think the key is Holly.  Jane is in the driver’s seat and doesn’t need to turn on her alliance.  Chase is, as he admitted himself, flighty and unreliable.

Holly, however, has some self awareness to the game.  Even though she was excited to go on the reward and probably preferred to have Jane come, she knew it made more sense for Chase to take Sash.  The point is, while Holly might not like the idea of getting rid of Jane, I think she’s savvy enough to know that it has to be done.

Holly's Shocked

So what then becomes the strategy?  I think the move is to vote out Jud next tribal (unless he wins, then Dan goes home) and then Sash and Holly team up with Dan when five people remain.  Jane has to be the target because of Chase’s immunity idol (it’s unclear if the remaining survivors know NaOnka gave it to Chase).  After four, Chase’s immunity idol is not valid so they’ve got a 75% (ok, Dan has no shot, so 66%) of getting rid of Chase and taking Holly and Dan to the finals.

That’s my plan for Sash.  Are there holes in it?  Absolutely.  With Jane gone, Sash is the biggest threat to win the game, so perhaps it makes sense for Chase and Holly to take Dan.  The only thing I am sure of is that the game will not play out the way I suggested.  It’s the lone redeeming quality of this season: it has been impossible to predict.

More thoughts from this episode:

  • Survivors really lose it emotionally when they’re playing the game.  Jane knew they were going to kill the chicken while they were on the reward, but still bawled at the chicken’s death.  She even made a cross for the darned thing.  In the words of Vince Lombardi “what the heck is going on here?”
  • Where did Benry’s new hat come from?  Did I miss that?  It looks like he made it at camp.
  • This was the worst “one bed, one male, two females” rewards of all time.  The show spent all of one segment on the reward and moved on because there was nothing interesting to show.  Expected, but disappointing.  The sexual tension this season is at an absolute zero.
  • I continue to warm to Dan.  He has no chance of winning because he’s so pathetic physically, but he’s the calmest person in the game.  Even knowing that Sash was the key to their survival, he still recognized that Sash was basically blackmailing them for his vote and called Sash out on it.  This challenge to his authority and intelligence took Sash completely by surprise and he hilariously flubbed through the remained of that conversation.
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Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.4 / 5.0 (4 Votes)
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I can't imagine giving Dan my vote though, he hasn't done anything this game. Simply moved from alliance to a different one when Marty was voted off. He didn't do any strategizing, like how last season's winner did a little bit at least.
Though he was hilarious when he called Sash out, and Sash couldn't get a word out.
Surprised Benry's gone. Wish the guys had stuck together, Fabio must realize he's on the outs now since even Dan didn't vote with him against Holly.


I totally agree that this season has been impossible to predict. I'm thinking right now that Jane or Chase will win, but who knows? I really like Dan too and he never even gets considered as a possible person to vote off. You never know.....he's always calm and unruffled and he's plenty smart. Despite the fact that everyone since day 1 has known he wasnt up to par to compete physically.....he's still here. maybe things could somehow fall his way since everyone will continue to target everyone else since they are true contenders for the challenges. as for the jury voting for him......ah, who knows.....i'm just thinking out loud. I'm leaning towards jane, she's definitely both physically and mentally competent enough to win immunity and i'd vote for her over pretty much everyone else.


I agree with your assessments for the most part, except that I think that Dan actually would be a huge threat to win. I think he has laid low, and with the exception of Fabio last night, hasn't really betrayed any one he is in a solid alliance with, or at least if he has, he doesn't seemed to have angered anyone. Ironically, both he and Holly seem like they are well liked and therefore are jury threats. I also think that it would have been the best time to get rid of Jane, because if Sash had gone with Dudry then neither Chase nor Holly would have had to vote for her, and she could still vote for them to win the million. Chase then could have played the idol the following night to save himself and shift the alliance back.

Survivor Season 21 Episode 12 Quotes

Holly: Look how skinny you are?
Jane: I'm like a rack of bones.

Overnight massages with the two oldest ladies left in Survivor.