Survivor: Caramoan Power Rankings
By Ben Willoughby
May 7, 2013
Even if Erik comes out at Tribal Council and proceeds to explain the simple methodical strategy he used to outwit, outplay and outlast everyone, they’ll all think he’s full of it. If they didn’t believe it in-game, they’re not going to be swayed by a 30-second jury speech.
Erik has some chance to make it to the end through being an available vote, but that role has been usurped by Sherri in recent weeks. I think that ultimately he will be seen as too unreliable to keep around. Everyone’s getting close to the end now, and believing the million dollars is almost within their grasp. That means conservative play, and going with people that (a) you think you can beat at the end and (b) you can predict, rather than people who might surprisingly vote for you. Sherri is both of these. Erik is only the first one.
Brenda was non-existent in the season for the first nine weeks of the show, and only came to prominence when she rescued Dawn’s mouthguard from the bottom of a lagoon. Not since Brett (who?) from the Samoa season (and I know this hasn’t triggered your memory) has anyone made it this far in the game with such little screen time. The editing alone makes me think that Brenda doesn’t have a chance of winning.
However, Brenda is also the name brought up again and again these days as a threat to win. Andrea wanted Brenda out. Obviously the players haven’t seen the absence of Brenda footage, but from their perspective she is a strong competitor in challenges who went the wrong way out of the gate, but successfully worked her way back into the main alliance after being on the wrong side without betraying or upsetting anyone.
Brenda is also an easy target to go after because it will be easy to get everyone to agree she should go. While she hasn’t got up in anyone’s grill, we haven’t seen her form any close relationships. Most of what we saw of Brenda outside of challenges was sucking up to Phillip, but Phillip isn’t around anymore. After the mouth guard incident, Brenda seemed closer to Dawn than Dawn did to Brenda. And until last episode, we had never seen her as part of the core vote-planning group. If Brenda’s name comes up again, who is going to defend her, or deflect the heat to someone else? I don’t see Brenda as being in a strong position to make it to the end. Her best chance is a challenge tear.
Now we're finally at the people who have a chance of winning. Dawn is probably the most complicated Survivor player this season. Everyone likes Dawn. No one really wants to go to the end with her because everyone likes her. But because half the people out there in Caramoan think they have this super-close relationship with their BFF Dawn, they dish their super-secret plans, ask if she wants in and then get hurt when she votes against them. So if they’re hurt, is anyone going to vote for her?
Everyone respects Dawn as a player. And we’ve seen Dawn make some excellent plays. She’s the reason Corinne’s plan to form a new alliance was snuffed. She had Malcolm fooled enough for him to approach her to try it over again. But the mental pressures on Dawn have been tougher than on anyone else. That’s why she’s crying all the time. That’s why she’s talking about quitting the game over a lost mouth guard. So we get players saying that Dawn doesn’t have “true grit,” is mentally weak and that she’s desperate enough to turn on anyone. And making approaches because they think she’s on the bottom of her alliance. Do the people on the jury truly respect her game?