Cast Assessment Cast Assessments News Season 38 Special Features Survivor Edge of Extinction

Survivor Edge of Extinction Draft and Cast Assessment : Inside Survivor


With the season premiere of Survivor: Fringe of Extinction virtually upon us, six of Inside Survivor’s contributors acquired collectively to draft their groups and assess the 18 castaways about to battle it out for the $1 million prize and the title of Sole Survivor.

The contributors participating within the draft evaluation are:

Alexandra Shields: Ali writes the weekly Scorching or Not function together with her boyfriend Gus, the place they analyze the gamers and bicker about one another’s picks.
Austin Smith: final season’s draft champion, Austin recaps the episodes of Survivor US and Australian Survivor.
Gus Schlanbusch: Gus writes the weekly Scorching or Not function together with his girlfriend Ali, the place they analyze the gamers and bicker about one another’s picks.
Rob Brodeur: our resident Stat man, Rob will as soon as once more be available this season to ship all the newest statistics following every episode.
Stephanie Lauw: Steph writes the weekly Subsequent Time On Survivor function, the identical function initially began by Survivor castaway Jacob Derwin.
Martin Holmes: that’s me! Proprietor of Inside Survivor.

Taking turns in a snake draft, determined by random draw, Ali, Austin, Gus, Rob, Stephanie and Martin picked their winner candidates, massive characters and private favorites to assemble their groups. Learn on to listen to their first impressions and predictions for every castaway…


I knew from the minute this forged was launched that I needed Kelley Wentworth on my eventual fantasy league staff. Fortunately for me, I had the very first decide this season, and I didn’t let it go to waste. Kelley was an underrated gem when she was on San Juan del Sur and was an extended shot to make it on to Cambodia. She campaigned her ass off and managed to not solely make it on to the season however proceeded to dominate for many the season, regardless of continually having to play from the underside. One among her many shining moments was her record-breaking idol play which negated 9 votes towards her. That is nonetheless a report to this present day, and it simply proves that she’s acquired what it takes to play onerous it doesn’t matter what state of affairs she’s in.

I feel she’s going to get alongside extraordinarily properly with most of her tribemates (even those she doesn’t like) and play yet one more tremendous strategic and calculated recreation. She’s nice in challenges and can hopefully assist her tribe dominate particularly being confronted together with her former Orkun tribemate and Sweet Crush associate, Joe “The Mustache” Anglim. If she does get voted out, she’s not the kind of individual to give up after going to the Extinction Island, and she is going to battle her means again into the sport as greatest as she will. Kelley is a troublesome cookie, truly a badass, and I’m extraordinarily proud and completely happy to have her because the unofficial captain of my staff. #teamwentworth


AubryThe Fringe of Extinction twist appears designed to offer the returnees… an edge. So it might be remiss to select anybody however a returnee as a primary decide within the recreation. Nevertheless, there’s much more to Aubry Bracco than merely her returnee standing. Aubry has top-of-the-line placement averages of all time, (and she is going to maintain the report for greatest placement common ought to she handle to win this season) and that’s as a consequence of her exemplary talent of working from the underside. In Koah Rong, Aubry was capable of claw her means again into the sport on two separate events, as soon as on the Brains tribe post-panic assault, and as soon as after Neal was medically evacuated from the sport.

On Recreation Changers, Aubry was as soon as once more in a nasty spot when Sandra declared her public enemy primary for working with Tony (however often because Aubry was one of many Koah Rong 4 and Sandra had fairly the vendetta towards them). Aubry managed to “survive” and construct a decent bond with Andrea and maintained a working relationship with Tai. Whereas the 2 of them have been unable to make it to the top, the mere incontrovertible fact that Aubry was capable of make it so far as she did as a lifeless lady strolling is spectacular. I need to confess, as a lot as I really like Aubry, I worry it might be too quickly for her to return. I feel that everybody is conscious of how good she is on the recreation, and is probably not prepared to take her far. Regardless of that, I can’t assist however really feel assured in choosing Aubry, as a result of she’s by no means down for lengthy. On a season referred to as Fringe of Extinction, resilience goes to play a key position on the subject of survival.



Oh Yeah!!! I’m consuming the Rick Devens Kool-Assist. I really feel like this morning information anchor might be making headlines this season as one of many largest characters on the forged. His enthusiasm and pleasure instantly draw you in. He’s clearly obtained an enormous character however not in an obnoxious, “I have to be the focus” type of method. I really feel like Rick understands when to modify it on and off and adapt his character to the state of affairs. He says as a lot in his First One Out interview, the place he talks about his profession as a information anchor/reporter and the way his expertise of interviewing individuals has taught him how one can adapt to totally different personalities. That’s going to be an enormous profit in a recreation like Survivor.

I additionally like how Rick stated he isn’t going to lie about his career. There are such a lot of castaways that invent pointless lies, particularly to do with their occupation, and so I recognize that Rick is coming in as an open guide. There isn’t a cause to overcomplicate what’s already a sophisticated recreation. I feel Rick is at that Survivor sweet-spot age-wise too. He’s in his early 30s and rocking a self-described “dad-bod” and subsequently doesn’t stick out as a transparent bodily menace. But he doesn’t seem weak both. As he advised Josh Wigler, he simply needs to be ok in challenges to not drag the workforce down. If Rick can maintain his personal within the tribe challenges and use his personable nature and appeal to disarm his tribemates, I feel he shall be in good standing.



When Season 38’s theme was first revealed and Joe was teased as a participant, I (and I’m positive many others) thought to myself, “Wow, I didn’t know Survivor needed a Joe win THAT dangerous.” It appeared to me, on the time, that Fringe of Extinction was tailored to Joe’s strengths, type of a Redemption Island redux the place Joe might simply “Joey Superb” his method by means of the sport with a few starry-eyed newbies as tailored Last Tribal allies. Having now studied the remainder of the forged, I’ve re-evaluated Joe’s probabilities of victory and, to be truthful, they’ve gone down slightly. I predict we’ll see some actual gamers among the many newbies, and Survivor has advanced quite a bit because the days of Boston Rob and Coach bulldozing their approach via the season; the untouchable glamour that when got here with being a returnee might have tarnished considerably.

That stated, the Fringe of Extinction does virtually assure Joe a substantial amount of longevity on this recreation: we’ve seen that he’ll go till his physique provides up on him, and although he will not be a strategic genius, he appears to be tremendously likable in individual, which means he’ll probably get in good with the opposite castaways who discover themselves deserted on that desolate sandbar. It stays to be seen whether or not Joe can be sporting a shirt with Sierra Daybreak-Thomas’ face emblazoned throughout the again of it.



As the one two-timer sandwiched between the world-weary expertise of his fellow three-peater returnees and the recent meat of the newbies, David is an interesting returnee for this season and it’s actually onerous to foretell whether or not he’ll be a simple out within the early recreation or if he’ll be capable of finagle his means in the direction of the top, however I can’t see any center floor. On the one hand, he’s a current participant famend for his technique and guile, which shall be recent in his rivals’ minds after his Pretend Idol made an look within the Ghost Island finale that aired days earlier than the forged flew to Fiji. On prime of that, he’s a recognized problem legal responsibility relating to something within the water. However then he’s additionally savvy, scrappy and endearing in his awkward charisma and which will disarm his rivals sufficient within the early days to permit him to get his footing to the person recreation the place he can execute his daring plans and probably blitz a fireplace problem.

I actually love David as a participant, and his willingness to take huge dangers for giant rewards. For instance, in Millennials vs. Gen-X the place he efficiently performed an Idol on Jessica on the fourth Tribal when she was barely an ally at that time, was prepared to attract rocks on the Ultimate Ten and was dedicated to a premeditated Pretend Idol ploy that went down within the historical past books. Coming into his second season, David is bringing that fireplace once more, calling his shot to be the primary participant to make a pretend benefit (dubbed the “Sole Vote Benefit”) – and if he finds himself on Extinction Island, who is aware of what mad schemes shall be concocted in that petri dish of isolation and tedium.  Though his anxieties are nonetheless hovering over his shoulder, David additionally appears to be much more confident and assured on the outset – and I can solely think about that willpower will assist his recreation. Whereas I feel he’s an extended shot to tug out a win, I’m assured that he’ll make his presence recognized on this season – a method or one other.



The youngest participant of the forged all the time has an added layer of issues to navigate. Within the final two seasons alone, we had Michael from Ghost Island who efficiently managed to hedge his age from suspicion and Jessica from David vs. Goliath who didn’t fairly handle to take action. This season, it’s 19-year-old Keith’s flip. The pre-med scholar is my first decide primarily as a result of it appears, from his ET Canada interview, that he isn’t going to cover his age. As an alternative, he plans on utilizing it as a approach to encourage others to take him underneath their wing so he can play a much less overt social recreation able working behind-the-scenes. I’m actually to observe how this performs out since we haven’t seen such a technique adopted so intentionally from the get-go.

Aside from that, Keith comes throughout as a pleasant, hardworking man, which usually suggests he would get alongside nicely with the remainder of his tribe. He additionally appears to be focusing loads of his recreation technique on social relations, being approachable, and prepared to have conversations with everybody. If this rings true, it will undoubtedly permit him to go far, particularly on this period of the sport the place swaps, twists, and unpredictability are rampant.



My subsequent decide is Gavin, the 23-year-old YMCA program director from Tennessee. He’s a superfan of the present, and though we’ve seen various levels of success with superfans up to now, I really feel like Gavin speaks with a great stability between super-fandom and a extra level-headed sensibility. He’s capable of rationalise his concepts and articulate them in fairly an accessible approach, which might be useful for his social interactions with different gamers within the recreation.

As Gavin himself recognises, others will in all probability view him because the younger and charming nation boy he seems to be. As with virtually all instances of falling into archetypes, this can be a double-edged sword, so it’s actually as much as Gavin to translate it to his benefit. I really feel like he’ll have the ability to quirkily meander his method by means of no less than the preliminary days of the sport. Moreover, Gavin’s CBS biography provides me the impression that he’s a particularly passionate man, with nice willpower and the smarts to play Survivor. I’m hoping he’ll have the ability to harness all these constructive traits and join together with his tribe.



Nicely-stocked with easy-going appeal and good humour, Chris appears destined to get alongside properly together with his tribe with out making waves. Planning to cowl up his present occupation as a door-to-door gross sales supervisor, he’ll lean straight into the coolness surfer archetype by claiming he’s merely a dive teacher, and I guess the lie will repay and permit him to coast deep into the sport on that laid-back trajectory that has aided so many earlier than him. Together with his expertise within the water and his “nature boy” enthusiasm for hearth, fishing and survival, it’s virtually like he’s the Joe of the newbies however with out the goal that might be hovering over three-timer Joey Superb. At the least, for now – the post-merge might be a minefield for somebody so evidently well-rounded. However till then, Chris might be the quiet hero for his tribe – and if he ever finally ends up banished to Extinction, his outdoorsy pursuits might assist to quell the survivalist nightmare promised.

However what actually makes Chris stand out to me is that he’s unabashedly a superfan. There’s no squinting to learn between the strains to marvel if it’s true fandom or simply the keenness of a brand new recruit – this man entered his First One Out interview singing the Wiggle Room theme track and riffing on Evolution of Technique in-jokes. This man isn’t only a fan, however he’s so bonafide that he’s listening to Survivor audiobooks. That information of the sport and its technique will assist him immensely. And though his plans to play a “good recreation” are a bit obscure past his sensible technique to “be a seven” and play to the regulation of averages, his eagerness and awe to be part of this recreation he loves might assist him to take the sport because it comes. Stay the boyhood dream, man!



Once I first examine Ron Clark’s faculty, The Ron Clark Academy, I used to be involved that Ron Clark may like Ron Clark slightly an excessive amount of – why else would Ron Clark determine to name The Ron Clark Academy “The Ron Clark Academy”? Nevertheless, upon studying that Ron Clark didn’t identify The Ron Clark Academy, however relatively that The Ron Clark Academy’s nonprofit board had determined to call The Ron Clark Academy “The Ron Clark Academy” to capitalize on Ron Clark’s broad identify recognition which got here from his a number of appearances on the Oprah Winfrey present, I discovered myself warming to Ron Clark. (I promise I’m achieved with this bit now).

I feel individuals are going to underestimate Ron. They’re going to take a look at him and see a schoolteacher – which is what he’s – they usually’re going to anticipate one thing within the vein of a Brendan Shapiro recreation, or perhaps much more of a Daybreak Meehan angle – a sort, nurturing character who doesn’t actually stand an opportunity of profitable. And I feel Ron goes to catch them off guard. From his interviews, Ron comes throughout as somebody who definitely does know how one can have enjoyable and be laid again, however who has an underlying depth and unwillingness to settle – he describes himself as a horrible loser and a “imply woman” (in citation marks in his bio), and even compares himself when it comes to predicted gameplay type to Spencer Bledsoe. What Spencer lacked in social capital, nevertheless, Ron appears poised to greater than make up with a recreation that blends management with chill. Then once more, I went all in on Natalie Cole for a similar purpose final season, so we’ll see how this goes.



Victoria actually stunned me after listening to her pre-game interviews. A fast look first impression led me to consider she was your stereotypical Survivor recruit coming onto the present to spice up her social media profile. I couldn’t have been extra improper. Not solely does this 23-year-old waitress appear ready for the expertise, however she is a authentic Survivor fan, regardless of selecting Recreation Changers as her favourite season. She referenced Pearl Islands in her FOO interview, wrote about Survivor in her school purposes and advised a joke about matching with Cochran on Tinder. I feel that information of the sport ought to serve her nicely, particularly with others on this forged falling into the “fish out of water” class.

There’s a self-awareness to Victoria that I consider shall be an enormous benefit. Like Rick, she is aware of it’s all about being adaptive and attending to know your tribemates. “You recreation is within the palms of different individuals,” she informed Wigler. She additionally talked about eager to make “massive strikes” and “depart the whole lot on the desk” but in addition acknowledged that timing is vital. She doesn’t need to are available weapons blazing. She needs to start out off as “center of the street” as potential; serving to at camp, contributing her greatest in challengers, not ruffling feathers. Then flip it up a gear as she hits the merge. That’s precisely how somebody of her archetype ought to strategy the sport. Younger ladies are sometimes early casualties and doing something to make your self stand out in these first few days is dangerous. Fortunately, she is on what I feel is the stronger-looking tribe, so if she will keep away from these first couple of Tribals and use that point to construct relationships it ought to stand her in good stead.



Survivor firefighters have robust upside, Tom Westman, Jeremy Collins… however I’ve seen lots of people evaluating Eric to JP Hilsabeck. I’ve obtained to face up for my man Eric. He will not be probably the most dynamic interviewee of all time, however I’m going to chalk that as much as pre-season jitters. I wouldn’t be such an incredible interviewee both. There can be a lot happening in my head that I might in all probability reply “what?” to each query. Eric has two young children at residence, certainly one of whom has particular wants. Any father, underneath these circumstances, can be anxious going right into a recreation through which there might be no contact with their household. As a firefighter, Eric is taught to turn into calm and action-oriented throughout irritating conditions. This demeanor shouldn’t be best for an interview on Leisure Weekly, however it’s essential within the recreation of Survivor.

I feel individuals are sleeping on Eric (in all probability as a result of, as they declare, his interviews put them to sleep). To me, Eric’s reactions to the social media vitriol towards him show an inherent humorousness and a scarcity of taking himself too critically, once more, essential in Survivor. Lastly, Eric’s athletic archetype often signifies that he’ll at the very least make the merge. We all know he’s robust sufficient to face up to the weather as a result of he faces formidable obstacles day by day. Compound his physique with the truth that of Extinction Island will closely favor these with the power to endure harsh environments and I feel we could possibly be taking a look at one other firefighter winner.



One other Lauren, one other member of Workforce Rob. Final time there was a Lauren, it was Ms. Rimmer in Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers, and she or he didn’t disappoint. Positive, I didn’t decide her instantly and didn’t have excessive hopes for her, however she undoubtedly proved me improper. Additionally, I do know an analogous identify doesn’t essentially imply she’ll be one other Rimmer, however it could actually’t harm, proper? (Jeremy Crawford and Natalie Cole from David vs. Goliath stare at me from the pre-merge bench shaking their heads).

However alas, that isn’t why I picked this Lauren. I used to be instantly drawn to her when listening to her interview with Josh Wigler on First One Out. She simply had such an ideal power about her and appeared to be tremendous likable and personable. So as to add on prime of that, she’s an athlete, enjoying for the Baylor Ladies’s soccer group (insert Missy’s “Love you Bay” sound drop) and she or he looks like she’ll be the entire package deal. It additionally simply so occurs that her Survivor participant she says she’s most like can also be my first staff member, Kelley Wentworth. This undoubtedly bodes nicely for Lauren, as I see them immediately making a bond and turning into a terrific pair. Despite the fact that she’s the youngest feminine participant this season, she doesn’t come off as immature or not prepared for the sport. I’m excited to see what she brings to this season, and I’m glad to have her on my workforce.



Dan (I don’t need to name him Wardog, proper?) is perhaps my final addition to the staff, however I feel he’ll be fairly a robust asset to have. What he lacks in humility, he makes up for in confidence. I actually hope he doesn’t proceed to discuss with himself within the third individual like he did in his CBS bio, but when he does, at the very least he’ll make for some good TV whereas he’s there. His character sort (Tony Vlachos, Domenick Abbate, Joe Mena, and so on.) has completed very properly within the recreation these days, and that would both go rather well for him or make him a direct goal. I feel what he has that the others didn’t is that he is aware of how these gamers have been perceived earlier than, and he needs to attempt to keep as distant from that as he can. Dan has an consciousness that I don’t assume the others actually did.

If he’s capable of maintain his ego in verify, I feel he might do extraordinarily nicely. He’s obtained the psychological toughness, the physicality, and an enticing character which can make him a priceless a part of the Manu tribe. Extinction Island won’t be an issue for him in any respect, contemplating he was within the army and has in all probability been via worse. Regardless of the problem is to get again into the sport, whether or not it’s bodily, psychological, or a mixture, Dan has the power to get it achieved. With Dan as my remaining staff member, I’ve obtained excessive hopes for #teamrob this season, particularly coming off my abysmal displaying in David vs. Goliath.



So, my workforce has Aubry Bracco (brains), and Eric Hafemann (brawn). What else do I want? If I have been the Survivor producers, I might say magnificence. However in my thoughts, I want lovely confessionals. That is the place Reem comes into play. Now, once I first listened to Reem on First One Out, I assumed she can be one in every of my first picks. She was enjoyable, understood the sport, and had an ideal story. Plus, mothers generally tend to do properly within the recreation ought to they make the post-merge. I assumed Reem was the whole package deal participant. Then, I watched her ET Canada interview and felt immediately deflated. Some individuals questioned whether or not she was drunk in that interview. However I’m going to reiterate that simply because somebody does a nasty interview, it doesn’t essentially imply that she shall be a nasty Survivor participant.

No matter how she does, based mostly on that one interview, I really feel fairly assured that she is going to no less than ship some entertaining gameplay, which signifies that there can be a plethora of nice confessionals that may give me some factors I’d lose with Eric. I’ve a historical past of being proper about gamers which are dismissed within the preseason. Ask Gus; I defended Lauren Rimmer, Mike Zahalsky, and Mike White previous to their seasons. In case you’re in search of proof of this, Mike White was in my draft final season, and I picked him over the likes of Kara or Alec. Individuals over a sure age can disappear as soon as the merge hits. So, when it got here right down to it, I made a decision to go together with my intestine and decide Reem. Worst case state of affairs, will probably be a terrific experience to Extinction.



Julia is a troublesome one to name. I might see her recreation going one in every of two methods. Both her willpower to play a robust recreation and never experience coattails will trigger her to turn into an early goal. Or she is going to get herself right into a controlling place and journey it deep into the sport. I don’t actually see a center of the street sort of recreation for the 24-year-old Medical Assistant. She clearly has a ardour to play arduous and never waste the chance. Her angle of not eager to “sit on the seashore getting a tan” is admirable and doubtless means she’s going to be working her butt off from day one. I simply fear that she’s going to focus so arduous on making an attempt to make an influence that she is going to flip herself into this large menace individuals need to eliminate as quickly as attainable.

But when there’s one factor Julia has going for her, it’s her motivation. The passing of her father is what motivated her to enter the medical subject and it’s additionally an enormous purpose for her being on Survivor. The present began airing quickly after her dad died, and, in her personal phrases, helped her “survive.” I feel having that sort of private connection and motivation can actually push an individual to that subsequent degree to succeed. I additionally assume she’s on a robust beginning tribe and will discover it straightforward to slot in with that group. It’ll all come right down to managing her menace degree, fortunately for her, there’s a group of returning gamers she might probably disguise behind as meat-shields.



On the flipside of the Survivor playstyle spectrum from my earlier decide, Ron Clark, we now have Julie Rosenberg, a 46-year-old toymaker mom from New York Metropolis who advised Rob Cesternino that she “didn’t actually have a technique for the sport (paraphrased).” My preliminary response to listening to this was to put in writing Julie off. I used to be involved that she would play a flippant recreation, floating round and never committing to something, maybe even emulating Daybreak Meehan (who she compares herself to in her CBS bio). As her interview went on, nevertheless, I began to return round to her mind-set. There’s an axiom that goes one thing to the impact of “no plan survives first contact with the enemy”, and plainly Julie’s plan is definitely extra delicate than she gave herself credit score for: she needs to be an improviser. She intends to free herself from any preconceived notions of how the sport ought to or should go, and as an alternative permit herself to adapt to circumstances as they arrive her method.

My spirits have been lifted additional upon studying that Julie was a day-one fan of the sport, so she’s truly received a great financial institution of Survivor historical past and former profitable video games to attract from as she modifies her recreation plan on the fly. My hope (or perhaps it’s a pipe dream) is that Julie and Ron work collectively. They’re two of the oldest individuals on the Kama tribe, they each have a wealth of expertise with youthful people, they usually seem to have complementary playstyles. It’s not misplaced on me that my whole draft is from Kama, however come on – how might I resist these three?



It appears written within the stars that Aurora will probably be a villainess of Fringe of Extinction, and she or he owns the truth that she’ll in all probability be seen as a bit of imply as she will get embroiled in fights and arguments. Direct and aggressive, she is going to butt heads together with her rivals, and as soon as the bodily and psychological drain of the sport units in, she’ll possible wrestle to maintain that in verify, notably provided that she asserts that making pals and enjoying the social recreation is a possible weak spot. She plans to be an open e-book about her profession as a divorce lawyer, a career many have sought to cover prior to now, however I wouldn’t be stunned to see that type of honesty assist her. The important thing with Aurora – and the rationale I wouldn’t completely write off her possibilities at doing nicely within the recreation – is that she is aware of the place her faults lie and she or he sees Survivor as a chance to problem herself to beat them, and I feel that self-awareness might assist her to clean over a few of her rougher edges.

Strategically, she speaks to the must be accepting of how her rivals are approaching the sport, and keep away from writing off their feelings or wishes in the event that they don’t align together with her personal. She’s used to massaging these various views, discerning fact from emotion and manoeuvring in the direction of a mutually useful end result in courtroom as a lawyer and people calculated expertise will come in useful within the recreation. Her consolation in being one among “the out crowd” might additionally assist her, as she doesn’t appear fazed by the prospect of adversity as she alludes to have skilled a lot in her lifetime, and that resolve will certainly drive her – whether or not it’s on the tribe seashores or within the purgatorial unknown of Extinction.



After everybody else drafted their ultimate decide, I used to be left with Wendy by default. With such an excitable character, it’s no query that she’s going to be an fascinating character to observe this season. There’s quite a bit to absorb about Wendy, particularly from her solutions and the best way she responded throughout her ET Canada interview. Nevertheless, I kind of felt an identical approach about Davie’s jampacked bio as nicely final season, and he turned out to be one of many standout savvy gamers for me. I’m not drawing too shut a hyperlink between the introduced pre-season photographs of those two gamers, however I’m hoping that we’ll be pleasantly stunned by Wendy as properly. She’ll should tone down her enthusiasm and type some strong relationships together with her tribemates so as keep away from getting voted out.

Listed here are the groups in useful graphic type (courtesy of Austin)…


Tell us who you’d select in your group within the feedback under.

Survivor: Fringe of Extinction premieres February 20 at eight pm on CBS. Keep tuned to Inside Survivor for weekly options together with Episode Critiques, Stats, Subsequent Time On Survivor, Scorching or Not, Give Me 5… and rather more.