40. Caramoan — Fans vs. Favorites (Season 26)
Survivor: Caramoan is an understandably divisive season of the game. For starters, it’s admittedly not nearly as entertaining as the first time that the Fans vs. Favorites twist was used. That’s a legitimate knock when there is a season with the exact same set up that is far and away superior to the sequel. However, there are also some redeeming qualities about the season that shouldn’t be overlooked.
When John Cochran played Survivor the first time in South Pacific, he was the pale young guy with red hair that seemed completely overwhelmed by everything he was experiencing. Because of that, he was labeled expendable at the earliest possible convenience. That changed completely when he returned, though, as he boasted far more confidence and a much calmer approach to the game.
For die-hard fans of the show, seeing that type of growth should be exciting. It’s what the game is about in terms of learning how to master your craft and playing the game that allows you as an individual to succeed. Cochran couldn’t be a physical threat, but he could be charming and cunning, and he was. So while there are definite knocks, Caramoan should still be remembered fondly.