44. Sophie Clarke (South Pacific, Winners at War)
For those of you who read my underrated winners article, you’ll know that I’m a huge fan of Sophie Clarke and her win in South Pacific. Production was trying really hard to give that season to Coach or Ozzy and Sophie threw a huge wrench in those plans and might have saved the future of the show in doing so.
Her winning the final immunity challenge in South Pacific was what won her the game and she also put on one hell of a performance at final tribal council. Oh, and her deadpan reaction to watching Jack and Jill is one of my all-time favorite Survivor moments.
Sophie didn’t get the respect she deserved for her win in South Pacific, but she won a lot of people over in Winners at War despite her being blindsided with an idol in her pocket. A lot of players from Winners at War have said that if Sophie didn’t get taken out then, she probably wins that season. I would have LOVED that, but I also love that she proved herself to the naysayers.
43. Aras Baskaukas (Panama, Blood vs Water)
Aras is usually considered to be in the middle tier of winners, but he should be given more respect for having to corral the mess that was the Casaya alliance. He was targeted frequently throughout his season for being a physical threat and he had to go head-to-head with Terry in the challenges, most of which Terry won.
Aras won when it mattered most though and while I agree that he’s a middle-tier winner, that doesn’t make him a bad winner by any means. He showed he had game in Blood vs Water and it was a bummer we didn’t get to see him return for Winners at War.