“Survivor” fans, there is good news and bad news when it comes to the upcoming 40th season, “Winners at War.” The good? If your favorite former players are voted out of the game there’s still a chance they can win. The bad? That’s because (spoiler alert!) the Edge of Extinction is back in play.
This controversial twist first popped up in Season 38 when memorable castaway Reem Daly became the first player voted out. Upon walking out of tribal council she was presented with a decision: stay in the game by boating to Extinction Island, or end her experience right then and there? As it turns out every castaway chose the boat option, though two — Keith Sowell and Wendy Diaz — quit not long after they arrived on the deserted island.
Part of the reason “Survivor” fans were mixed on the Edge of Extinction twist was because the season’s ultimate winner, Chris Underwood, prevailed after only being in the game proper for 13 days. Chris was originally the third person voted off the island on Day 8, and he didn’t return to the game until Day 35. However, you can’t say Chris didn’t make the most of those last five days of competition.
As you’ll recall, Chris was responsible for “one of the best moves in all of reality TV” when he voluntarily agreed to give up his immunity necklace at the Final 4 in order to earn his way to the end by making fire. His gamble paid off big time as he took out the most likable player, Rick Devens, just prior to the final tribal council. Chris ended up winning over the jury (which notably was filled with Edge of Extinction inhabitants) by a 9-4-0 vote over Gavin Whitson and Julie Rosenberg.
With Edge of Extinction back in play for “Survivor: Winners at War,” we have a suggestion that could help bring wary fans on board. Instead of letting the deserted island fill up with every single voted out player, there should be two stages where, if you don’t win the comeback challenge, you’re out for good. In Season 38, all of the losers of the first Extinction competition were allowed to return to their desolate beach and wait for another shot at coming back. Not cool. They should have all been sent home once Rick won that initial challenge on Day 17, and then Edge of Extinction should have started again from scratch. That tweak would help ensure that the person who ultimately wins doesn’t skate by with only playing a dozen or so days in the proper game. What do you think?
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