Survivor David vs. Goliath player comparisons: Natalia Azoqa

Photo: Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment ©2018 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Photo: Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment ©2018 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

Natalia Azoqa became the next subject of our player comparisons after a rather questionable big move by Alec Merlino in Survivor: David vs. Goliath.

Right after the swap, I thought there was almost zero chance that a Goliath could go home with Carl joining the losing tribe in Survivor: David vs. Goliath episode 4. The eagerness to make a move early on by Alec prevailed, much to my amazement. Say what you want about the move, it sure made for great television.

Before we get to Natalia, I need to acknowledge Bi. When Pat was evacuated, I decided not to do a comparison on him, and I will be doing the same and skipping Bi.  Unless there are unique circumstances, I am going to limit this series to players actually voted out.

Who she compared herself to: Kelley Wentworth

Based on her bio it is obvious that Natalia would have compared herself to the Cambodia Wentworth. Natalia’s game ended far too prematurely for her to enter this conversation. On the other hand, she did have a game not too far apart from Wentworth in San Juan del Sur. Both of them were the fifth one out of the game, both were taken out right after the swap, and both survived one pre-swap tribal.

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Alec’s decision, which has been heavily critiqued, is what sent Natalia home. A rational player never makes this move. For Wentworth, it was not her actions that sent her home, but her father’s. If Dale is not related to Wentworth, she is never considered to be sent home that tribal. Although Natalia was clearly aiming to become Wentworth 2.0, their first games are almost identical.

Comparing her to 16th-place finishers

We begin the contenders by going to Nicaragua with Tyrone Davis. Both of them had no trouble making it to the swap but were surprised targets at the next tribal. While Natalia was given a majority, it was 4-4 for Tyrone. Still, you would expect him to be safe over his original tribe mainstays Dan, Holly, and Yve. This is season 21; the big threats are not sent home too early as we see over and over today.

We saw Natalia rub her tribe the wrong way with her constant need for reassurance, and it all turned around on her. Tyrone was very welcoming directly after the swap, but eventually, he became too bossy. Despite the even numbers, Tyrone’s boot was shocking when you had the over the top NaOnka.

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Next, we bring up Monica Padilla, the Cambodia version. Monica was swapped into a dominating 4-2 majority. However, she was a little too into a women’s alliance so early in the game. This caused a lack of trust amongst those in her tribe. This is similar to the reassurances needed by Natalia; it is just one thing that is really getting on the tribe’s last nerve.

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  • Despite her actions, Monica should have been saved by her tribe just by keeping pre-swap numbers strong. Kelly Wiglesworth and Spencer would have both made a lot of sense, but instead, a questionable move was made once again as all three of her original tribe voted for her. Stephen Fischbach, who was also in the majority, has since admitted it was a questionable move, and that they overreacted to Monica’s actions. This is very similar to the aura of Alec’s situation.

    Our last contender is CeCe Taylor. CeCe was very comfortable in her 3-2 majority following the swap. Her tribe lost the first challenge, and Chris and David were willing to sacrifice the majority in order to keep their tribe strong. CeCe was a clear liability, and you saw the decision pay off with the tribe having success going forward.

    The Millennial and Gen X lines remained quite blurred for the rest of the season, so it appears as though this move did not change up the numbers too dramatically.

    The verdict: Monica Padilla

    The only glaring difference between the two is that Monica was a returning player. Besides that, you had a huge blindside and a questionable decision by members of the majority. We see the term “swap-screwed” thrown around often, but these players found themselves on the outs after a dream swap scenario.

    Next. Survivor Winners: Ranking 35 Sole Survivors By Season. dark

    Tune in next week as we find out who is our most similar 15th-place finisher.