Why was ______ sent to Survivor’s Edge of Extinction seventh?

Photo: Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment ©2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Photo: Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment ©2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

At the dawn of the merge, Joe couldn’t put “Joey Amazing” away and was sent to the Edge of Extinction for being too big of a threat in challenges and a returning player.

For Joe, his stint on Survivor: Edge of Extinction was largely the same as first two; he was so dominant in challenges that people voted him out because of how big of a threat in challenges he was. At the onset of the game, Joe said he wanted to put Joey Amazing away and never shine brighter than anyone else in this season. Unfortunately for Joe, he couldn’t exactly do that.

In Survivor, it can be a very difficult thing to shake past reputations; especially if you have a reputation like Joe. The biggest part of Joe’s problems this season largely date back to his first two seasons, Survivor: Worlds Apart and Survivor: Cambodia.

In Survivor: Worlds Apart, Joe dominated in challenges early on. This caused Rodney Lavoie to get his Escameca tribe to throw the immunity challenge in an attempt to oust Joe. However, this backfired when eventual winner Mike Holloway got scared of Rodney’s relationship with Joaquin Souberbielle and got Sierra Dawn Thomas, Dan Foley, and Joe to blindside Joaquin. Joe then proceeded to win the first two individual Immunity Challenges in a row before being voted out.

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In Survivor: Cambodia, Joe never went to Tribal Council until the merge as his tribes won every Immunity Challenge largely thanks to his efforts. Joe then proceeded to win four consecutive Immunity Challenges post-merge only to get voted out on his second time being vulnerable.

On Survivor: Edge of Extinction, almost the entire original Kama tribe (the Kama Six) aligned against Joe and Aubry because they wanted the returning players out. The lone holdout was Aurora who aligned with the returnees. Luckily for Joe, the newbies did realize the value Joe had in challenges and felt they needed to keep him around for a little while.

Immediately after saying he didn’t want to shine brighter than anyone else in challenges, he did exactly that, dominating the opening challenge. His dominance continued from there leading the Kama tribe to win in each of the three Immunity Challenges.

When the swap hit, Joe remained on the Kama tribe. His new tribe consisted of himself, Aurora, Ron, Julia, and Julie. He attempted to convince Ron to join him and Aurora, but it did not work. Ron, Julia, and Julie targeted Joe in the event the new Kama tribe lost. In episode 5, after seeing how Joe provided for the tribe, Ron reconsidered his plan to get rid of Joe. However, none of this ended up mattering as the new Kama tribe won every post-swap Immunity Challenge.

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On Day 17, the tribes merged, and Rick returned from the Edge of Extinction defeating Joe’s ally Aubry. However, the Kama tribe had the upper hand as there were eight original Kama members against five original Manu members. There were fractures within the original Manu that helped Kama even further. Wentworth’s alliance targeted Rick, but Julie did not like this and told Rick and David about it, wanting to target Wentworth.

At the first individual Immunity Challenge, Joe surprisingly lost. Back at camp, Ron asked Joe about that night’s target, but Joe’s nonchalant response spooked Ron. Ron then went to the Kama Six and approached them about blindsiding Joe for being a physical threat. Ultimately, the Kama Six blindsided Joe, sending him to the Edge of Extinction by a vote of 6-3-2-2 over David, Wentworth, and Rick.

There are two main reasons Joe was sent to the Edge of Extinction seventh; his status as a returnee and legacy as a physical threat, and his performances in challenges this season. The returnees have been public enemy number one at Kama since Day 1. Additionally, no matter how hard he tries, Joe will simply not be able to shake the legacy of his past challenge performances, especially when you keep dominating in challenges as he had.

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Luckily for Joe, he now resides on the Edge of Extinction where he will have a chance to return to the game.