On May 18, 2019, Inside Survivor released the cast for Survivor 40 a season that only includes former winners of the show. Whoever wins Survivor 40, a season of some of the best former winners of the show, could go down as the greatest winner of all time. But who has a chance at winning the million dollar prize? Let’s take a look at each cast member’s chances from low to high and discuss who could end up being the winner of this season. In Part 2, The Mastermind will take a look at those who, from the outside looking in, have a good chance of winning this illustrious all-winners season.
POSSIBLE CHANCE TO WIN
Many fans of the show regard Kim Spradlin as the best to ever play Survivor. Yet her season was such a slog that few will even remember how amazing what she accomplished in One World truly was. It’s unlikely that she’ll be an early target and being so smart in her social maneuvering, Kim could make a serious dent in Survivor 40. Just imagine an all-women’s alliance led by Kim and Parvati. That would be something else. Strong in all three major areas of the game, Kim could definitely be the winner of this all-winners season and if she were to make it to the end, it would be hard to find someone more likable to vote for than her. If she wins a second time, Kim would certainly cement her legacy as the greatest to ever play.
Michele Fitzgerald’s stint on her Survivor return could go one of two ways. She could be highly underestimated and make it all the way to the end of the game again, or she could be seen as an easy early vote and be taken out within days of setting foot in Fiji. Regardless of what happens, I am so happy to see Michele Fitzgerald be given the opportunity to play the game again, especially given that Jeff Probst has always made it known that he’s not the biggest fan of her win. Michele’s Kaoh Rong victory was even the subject of a change to the jury questioning format, which had held for thirty-three seasons before changing in Survivor Game Changers. If there’s one thing we know from Michele’s game in Kaoh Rong it is that she is a very likable player and someone who can easily garner the jury’s respect simply for being the likable person that she is. She’s also a solid challenge competitor and many forget that this was essential in stopping Aubry from winning Kaoh Rong outright. Hopefully whether she’s the winner or not, that we see a whole lot more of her game this time around.
Sarah Lacina has to be one of the most underrated winners of recent Survivor. Since Sarah Lacina and the introduction of the male-dominated fire-making twist, not a single female castaway has won the game and that is really, really unfortunate. Sarah’s season of Survivor was recent, but not so recent that her flashy game will be at the top of everyone’s mind. It can’t be forgotten that she won a season called Game Changers and already has experience playing against very good Survivor players in a similar-styled season. In addition to that, she played the most cut-throat game of any winner since Natalie Anderson and she probably has what it takes to bring a similar style of strategic maneuvering to what Parvati managed in Heroes vs. Villains. That may be a bit hyperbolic of Sarah’s abilities, but her game in Game Changers really demonstrates how cut-throat and stellar she might be at this game. With a superb killer instinct, she might only grow on those abilities in her third time out. Sarah won’t be viewed as a massive target, nor should she be viewed as an easy target. This means the Game Changers winner could easily fly under the radar again and make a big impact at the end of the game.
In all of the recent talk about the cast of Survivor 40, I have been surprised about all the discontent with Adam being on the season and the perceptions of him as one of the lesser winners of the game. He’s not the best winner, but the Millennials vs. Gen X man is one of just five players who won the final jury vote unanimously. Adam also won the game while having the constant thought of his mother about to pass away on his mind, and this time around he should be able to play with a clearer head. The California native is also such a nice guy and the kind of person who it is very hard to vote against. There is virtually no reason to vote him out early if he plays this thing correctly and stays under the radar at first. If he gets to the merge as part of a solid alliance, he could be set up to do the exact same thing again and wait for the perfect moment to slay the season’s biggest player and win at the final tribal council.
Ethan Zohn was one of the few names on the cast that we really didn’t think was in the mix to return to Survivor 40. But the Survivor Africa winner returns to the show as the earliest winner on the cast and the question will now become about whether he can adapt to the craziness of the modern game. Although Ethan did survive the first ever swap in the show’s history; immunity idols, advantages, the final-four fire making twist and a new jury format will all be foreign concepts to Ethan and he’ll be forced to learn quickly about a game that everyone else other than Amber has experience playing in. With all that being said, Ethan is truly one of the most likable people to ever play the game and he was so good in Survivor Africa that he made his win look easy! He could easily be an under-the-radar player in Season 40 and if he can adapt to the modern game quickly, Ethan will certainly be one to watch out for. As an aside, with Ethan on the cast I am silently sad that Jenna Morasca wasn’t also picked. However, this is probably better for Ethan that he’s alone and doesn’t have to worry about his association to Jenna being used against him – like is the case with Rob & Amber.
Sophie Clarke is one of the most underrated winners of this game and part of that has to be down to how little we saw of her efforts in Survivor South Pacific. She played to the ego of ‘Coach’ masterfully well and it will be so interesting to see how she fares against players who may have equally big egos. For some reason I see Sandra Diaz-Twine clashing with Sophie and I also see a situation where the Survivor nerds like Adam Klein and Nick Wilson try and team up with her and only make themselves and Sophie bigger targets in the process. However, Sophie really should never be the target if she survives to the swap and her sociability, knowledge of the game and ability to play up to bigger players should all suit her well in a return to Survivor.
In all of his quirks and goofiness, it can sometimes be forgotten how much knowledge Tyson has on the game of Survivor. He’s one of the smartest strategists the show has ever seen and he never appears as threatening as he really should appear. Tyson is one of the best at feeding people what they want to hear, playing up to egos and making people feel like they can use him to their advantage, before using those people to his advantage. In a stellar cast like this it is very hard to imagine a path to victory for the former Blood vs. Water victor. However, he won’t be an early target and as the game progresses there should always be bigger fish to fry if he’s able to resist being in control of a dominant alliance in the same manner that he was in Blood vs. Water. Tyson is the kind of player who can make himself a target in an instance, but he’s also the kind of player that knows how to use everyone else’s strengths against them and turn those strengths into weaknesses.
So there it is! The castaways who have a chance to win Survivor 40: All Winners, but not the best chance. How do you think the above castaways will fare? What about everyone else? Make sure to check out Part 1 and Part 3 as well. Also be sure to check out The Mastermind Reality on Twitter @realitytvtms. Thanks for reading and see you soon!