The rules are simple. If you find fire tokens on the Edge of Extinction, you can buy advantages in the all-important “Survivor” return challenge. Unfortunately for Yul Kwon, he was the only voted-out player who didn’t get the opportunity to acquire any island currency, and people are understandably bummed. (Read our episode recap here.)
As this is the first season ever to incorporate fire tokens, there are obviously kinks in the system that need to be worked out for future installments. Notably, why does making it further in the game, as Yul did, essentially punish him from earning an advantage in the return challenge? Just last week there was a fire token goose chase in which four wooden coins were hidden up on the cliff. That meant double eliminees Parvati Shallow and Sandra Diaz-Twine (had she not quit) had a golden opportunity to find fire tokens alongside the people who’d been there for days or even weeks. No such luck for Yul, who seemingly was punished for lasting longer in the game than his fellow Extinction Islanders.
For the record, the following four players cashed in their fire tokens for advantages in the challenge: Tyson Apostol (who won), Rob Mariano, Natalie Anderson, Danni Boatwright and Ethan Zohn. This allowed them a “freebie” in the competition by not having to dig up their bamboo and twine. Boston Rob’s wife Amber Mariano gave her coin to him, passing up her own chance at the advantage.
Since Boston Rob and Natalie had four coins apiece heading into the challenge, they used their other three to purchase immunity idols … but those only have power in the proper game. They could have used a maximum of three fire tokens for three different advantages in the return comp, but chose not to, a decision they are likely now regretting.
Here’s just a small sampling of fan outrage from social media over Yul’s unfair disadvantage in “Survivor’s” Edge of Extinction challenge:
Dalton Ross: “Man, Yul got seriously hosed.”
Stephen Fishbach: “People who’d been collecting dust on the Edge had a huge advantage.”
Maggie Kelley: “YES! I said the same thing as the challenge started.”
Logan: “Seriously, my immediate thought was, ‘Yul didn’t even get a chance at earning tokens!'”
Annalisa Miller: “Seriously bummed for Yul. I don’t like anything about EOE but the fact you get advantages if you’re voted out early is just wrong.”
Maria Hudson Johnson: “Yes but…Yul still nearly killed it even with the disadvantage because he is awesome.”
Bobby Smith: “I’ve been saying this since week 1! It’s not fair for people to get punished by lasting longer in the main game.”
Be sure to make your predictions to influence our reality TV racetrack odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before the next episode airs on CBS. You’ll compete to win a spot on our Season 40 leaderboard and eternal bragging rights. See our contest rules and sound off with other fans in our reality TV forum. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.