Survivor: Caramoan Power Rankings

Week 13

By Ben Willoughby

May 7, 2013

I still say this is Phillip's game to lose!

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And looking forward to this week’s Survivor episode? Brenda telling Dawn that Cochran should be next. If past behavior is any guide, this means that Dawn will tell Cochran and Brenda will be going next.

Ultimately, I think Dawn will have had too many hands on too many knives to do well in front of a jury. Jurors like to vote for aloof strategists who order the votes from on high rather than the poor foot-soldiering sod who actually did the information-gathering grunt-work to make it possible. I would actually love to see Dawn own this in front of a jury – that she is the better player, who fooled Corinne, who fooled Malcolm, who enabled her alliance into a dominant position, and who (if she makes it to the end) controlled the end-game. But I don’t think we’ll see that. I think we’ll see apologizing and few votes.

1. Cochran

I think Cochran’s going to win it. In fact, I’m 90% sure that if he gets to the end, Cochran’s going to win it. It may seem cruel and self-flagellating, but I think we all have to mentally prepare ourselves for the phrase Cochran: Ultimate Survivor.

Cochran’s been getting the best edit by far. Not only is he the go-to guy for any “what Survivor means to me” interview, but he’s also the only person we see talking objectively about strategy and playing the game. It’s a big change from his first season when he was depicted as being constantly put down by everyone on his tribe for being a useless weakling. It’s setting him up as being a winner who we should all be happy with.


Not that I think Cochran has been playing especially badly or would be a particularly undeserving winner. He was a core member of Stealth R Us from the near-beginning, and he has worked hard on his social game – building relationships within his alliance like Phillip and Andrea, and being the facilitator for discussions between his sub-alliances and outsiders.

And he was involved in every key booting that kept the alliance in control of the game without anyone getting angry at him. Sure, once Dawn leaked the relevant information to her alliance, they were obvious plays – “vote out Corinne”, “vote out Malcolm” – but it was him and Andrea who we saw deciding on the plans and then executing them. And they were executed as well as any bootings we’ve seen in the game, with no defections from an alliance that was really too big in the first place.

Cochran even won two immunity challenges. Sure, one was food and the other was through an advantage but it’s two more than anyone would have thought coming into the season. Probst turning up at Tribal Council pantsless is more likely.

Cochran’s main challenge will be getting to the end. He can’t win immunity a third time, can he? A lot depends on Dawn and whether she decides to turn on him. We’ve seen then have a close alliance through the game, and I think in the clutch Dawn will stick with him. Does she want to go to the final Tribal Council having betrayed her closest ally? Plus everyone likes Dawn, and she probably thinks she can beat him.

After tonight’s episode, come back for the recap, and then again next week for the recap of the finale, followed by a recap of the reunion, where all your burning questions of Survivor: Caramoan will be answered, including “They’re not really going to give Brandon Hantz more camera time, are they?” As well as the How Well Do You Know Survivor: Caramoan quiz on Survivor week!

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