Jud "Fabio" Birza is the king of Survivor: Nicaragua. We felt it was a well deserved win which represented a change in Jud's character and game play throughout the season. What do our writers think? Did the right person win? Could it have played out differently? What do we make of Redemption Island?
We're looking forward to hearing from our readers as well.
Did the right person win?
Kyle Kalember: The person I was rooting for by the end won, but that wasn't the question that was asked. I truly believe that Fabio deserved to win the game. He was just as deserving as any of the final three and I was happy with the outcome.
Dan Forcella: That is such a tough question in the game of Survivor. That's what makes this game so good: in any given season, the jury can vote entirely differently. I have been rooting for Fabio to win for a while now, so yeah I think the right person won. The dude won three straight challenges and didn't tick anyone off on his way to the final three. That works most of the time.J Murray: Based on the final three, yes. Chase was good and obviously had a difficult time with the flipping and lying but he never made any big moves, he went with what his alliance was doing. I give Sash a lot of credit, he survived and managed to get himself into the dominant alliance at each stage of the game. I think he was a bit too much of a weasel for the jury though. If you include Holly, however, she should have won. She turned her game around after game five and was very strategic by voting out Brenda. Holly had a lot of great ideas and would have won if she made it to the final three.
Luke Dwyer: Of the final three, the jury got the vote right, but I'm surprised how many votes Chase got (4) and how few Sash got (0). I figured it would be something like Jud 6, Sash 2, Chase 1.
Was Dan really a threat?
Kyle: Not at all. I really don't think the jury would have voted for him. He wasn't a physical threat and he wasn't a strategic threat and he didn't really do anything of note. He did have a viable gameplan that has worked in the past which can't be tossed aside as worthless though. Staying under the radar works and that is the flat-out truth. Could he have beaten Fabio? Absolutely not.
Dan: I don't think the jury liked him any more than they liked Fabio. Add the fact that he was a waste of space at camp and in challenges, and that really would have taken him out of the running at final tribal.
Murray: Dan was only a threat because he didn't upset anyone. Based on a strategic vote or physical attributes, Dan is not a threat at all.
Luke: On one hand there's no way Dan should be a threat because of how little he did in the game. However, these votes so often are about politics and Dan as well liked. The bigger question to me is why he wasn't brought to the final four. He's not a threat to win the final immunity challenge, so that automatically increases everyone's chances to 33%. Why not just wait to vote him out then?
What was your favorite jury member confrontation?
Kyle: I didn't have one. The jury confrontations sucked. I actually hate the final tribal council because its predominantly filled with angry, bitter people who don't understand that they are in a game playing for a million dollars. Alina and Jane came off horribly, Marty was bad, Dan (who I like) was bitter, Brenda couldn't put it past her, etc, etc. Surprisingly, NaOnka was the most level headed member of the jury.
Dan: Oh definitely Chase and Marty. Why would Chase ever choose someone on the jury as the winner of Marty's ridiculous "dumber than a bag of hammers" award? Wasn't Fabio the obvious choice in that situation? Throw your fellow finale contestant under the bus before trashing on someone who is about to vote for or against you!
Murray: The jury confrontations are my least favorite part of the finale. They always just appear so immature or irrelevant. I'm not sure of a better way to end the show, but I would like CBS to consider changing it up a bit.
Luke: I loved the hypocrisy of Alina telling Fabio that she wanted to give her vote to a man, not a boy. Sure, Fabio's just 21 years old, but Alina's only 23!
Who was your favorite cast member?
Kyle: By the end it was Fabio. I also really enjoyed Jimmy Johnson for his short time. The show took a marked hit after he left. Shannon is also....no I can't even do it. Worst human being on the show.
Dan: It was probably Fabio because he has been around for so long. If Marty had not been eliminated so early, it might have been him. It certainly was not Jane. How she won the audience vote is beyond me. She was easily my least favorite contestant on the show. Am I alone here?
Murray: Jimmy J. I would think that he is a lot of fun to be around, very smart and very inspirational. Other than that, this cast was lacking compared to some of the other casts of late.
Luke: Dan really grew on me by the end of the show. I simply loved his confidence. He was so comfortable with himself and did not feel the need to impress anyone by trying to be anyone but himself. His emotion at seeing his son was really unexpected as well. Least favorite: I agree with Dan, Jane was unwatchable.
What's your opinion of Redemption Island for next season?
Kyle: Haven't they done something like this already? The one thing I do like is the one on one face off possibilities every time someone is voted off to survive to live another 3 days on the Redemption side. It could be really cool if someone just wins out for a long time, comes back and then wrecks shop. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. It honestly all depends on who they cast. Its always the people that make or break the season, not the gimmicks.
Dan: I think there is a lot of potential for a great change to the show. Many of the other changes have not panned out so well.
Murray: Interesting twist. Survivor has previously tried to bring back those who have been voted off before and it didn't work so well. Inevitably it leads to the person being voted off twice and an easy vote for the tribe. I am much more impressed with the change in the decision to keep people that quit on the jury. I think this season was very rare in that two people quit and were on the jury, but you can just tell hom mad Jeff is and doesn't think they belong there.
Luke: Jeff and CBS producers have said before that they regretted the Outcasts idea they had in a previous season, so I'm surprised that they're going this direction again. I typically have faith in the twists they add to the show, but I'm admittedly skeptical about this one. Hopefully it's better than the Medallion of Power.