Most Underrated Survivor Winners – Number 1: Chris Daugherty (Vanuatu)
There isn’t a Survivor winner more underrated than Chris Daugherty, who miraculously won Vanuatu despite being down 6-1 in numbers at one point and being the only man remaining in the game.
Vanuatu was the biggest gender divide Survivor has ever seen and it was set up that way with the men vs women concept on Day 1, which had been done just three seasons prior. Even after the tribes swapped and the genders were mixed up, the women still aligned at the merge and had the advantage, picking off the men one by one.
That changed when only Chris remained and the women finally decided it was time to turn on each other. During this time, Chris wisely didn’t cause a stir and let the women tear each other apart while also making good with Eliza, Scout, and Twila.
The four of them were the ones who turned on the other three, blindsiding Leann at final seven and then taking Ami out next.
Chris was the glue that held that mess of an alliance together and they never turned on him, allowing him to get to the final four where he cruised to the end. Chris won challenges when he needed to, he formed alliances and bonds and then cut ties with them when he needed to, and most of all, he was clutch when he had to be.
Chris’ final tribal council performance is one of the best that Survivor has ever seen. He convinced three of the five women on the jury to vote for him and he had burned two of them pretty badly. Plus, most of the women had agreed that they didn’t want a man to win yet three voted for him over Twila.
What makes Chris’ win even more impressive is that he was really close to being the first one voted out that season, as his abysmal performance on the balance beam cost the Lopevi tribe the first immunity challenge. Chris continued to wiggle his way out of bad situations and made it all the way to the end in the most improbable way.
When it comes to Survivor winners, Chris Daugherty isn’t the best ever, but his win is one of the most underrated ever. Jeff Probst ignores Chris completely because Probst dated Julie, one of the players Chris burned on the way to the top, which is probably why we haven’t seen Chris return.
That’s a shame too because I would have loved to have seen Chris on Winners at War. He truly is the most underrated Survivor winner of all-time.