"Survivor: Caramoan" crowned its 26th winner in its usual two-hour finale extravaganza. But there was one more medical evacuation to get out of the way, opening the door for an unexpected reward challenge for the final four. The reward this time, though, was an advantage in the final challenge. An advantage that ultimately didn't really pay off, but it all worked out anyway.
All that whining Erik did in Wednesday's show about starving turned out to be exactly what was happening. Collapsing immediately after Tribal Council, Erik was forced out of the game, leaving a stunned final four. Eddie was hoping this was the opening he needed to make it into the final Tribal Council, but it wasn't.
Cochran took the reward challenge that saw them building houses of cards on a platform they were balancing with one arm. A brutal challenge that could have gone to anyone. The irony was that the advantage he got didn't seem to help much. The final challenge had them gathering bags -- Cochran's weren't tied to the structure -- and then assembling a puzzle. Cochran's advantage had him working on the puzzle well before the others, but he was nowhere when the rest started putting theirs together. Once he started to figure it out, though, he pulled ahead and won.
The final tribal saw Dawn and Sherri face off against Cochran, and it seemed pretty obvious how things were going to play out. Cochran was very open about how he'd played the game, and didn't get nearly the heat that Dawn did -- despite playing a similar game. Sherri thought she had this, but was mostly ignored. She didn't plead her case well, and was downright hostile at one point, which didn't win her any favor, either.
In the end, it was only the third unanimous vote in those 26 seasons as Cochran took home the $1 million prize. Entertainment Weely felt he more than proved himself, writing, "Cochran went the entire season without having a single vote cast against him. Until the final Tribal Council, that is, when he got all the votes he needed and was named the winner ... It was a remarkable turnaround for a guy who was berated for being disloyal and mocked for his inability in challenges the last time he played in 'Survivor: South Pacific.'"
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