Survivor Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites Premiere

SURVIVOR: CARAMOAN - FANS VS FAVORITESSurvivor Caramoan premiered on Wednesday on CBS and I’m finally able to sit down and write about it.  This season of Survivor is the 2nd round of fans vs. favorites but after seeing the cast of favorites, I have to say that this feels more like fans vs. the people we could get to agree to come back and do the show again.

Survivor Caramoan is the incredible 26th season of the Survivor series.  Set in the Caramoan Islands in the Philippines, this season of Survivor brings us back to the popular fans vs. favorites game where a team of fans will be pitted against a team of previous Survivor players that are ostensibly fan favorites.  Looking at the favorites though, I really don’t think their title fits.  With the exception of maybe Malcolm, none of the people on the favorites team are anyone that I would consider to be a favorite.  I wouldn’t even really consider them to be villains either.  The casting of this team has me a bit confused but whatever, Survivor is my favorite reality show and I would watch it no matter who they cast.

Here are the people they brought back to make up the “favorites” team:

Francesca Hogi – 38, Redemption Island

francesca hogi survivor caramoaFrancesca was the first person voted out of the Redemption Island season.  How does someone who was the first person voted out become a fan favorite?






Andrea Boehlke – 23, Redemption Island

andrea boehlke survivor caramoaAndrea had a good run on Redemption Island.  She was the 14th person voted out, was sent to Redemption Island, immediately won the last duel on the Island, and was brought right back in to the show.  She was voted out in the very next tribal council, but she showed that she had an ability to play the game. She could be an interesting one to watch in this season of Survivor.




John Cochran – 25, South Pacific

john cochran survivor caramoaCochran was supposed to be the biggest fan of the show and the smartest person to have played the game.  He turned out to be an incredibly terrible player and he certainly didn’t do anything to dispel the stereo-type of people who go to Harvard.  Cochran flipped on his tribe on the South Pacific season and was then voted out as soon as the Upolu tribe no longer needed him.  He lost the fan favorite vote to Ozzie in that season by a huge margin but he did come in 2nd place so making him a favorite for this show makes sense.  He is absolutely no threat at all to win this game.



Malcolm Freberg – 25, Philippines

malcolm freberg survivor caramoaMalcolm very nearly won his season of Survivor.  Had he won the last immunity challenge, he would have won the show running away with it.  As it was, he failed surprisingly quickly in the last immunity challenge after having been a very dominant player through the game.  He lost the fan favorite vote to Lisa Welchel by a margin of .7%.  Malcolm is a threat to win this game and he comes in with the disadvantage of everyone having seen him play the game already.



Brandon Hantz – 21, South Pacific

brandon hantz survivor caramoaBrandon Hantz had the misfortune of being related to the most notorious Survivor player in history, Russell Hantz.  He was afraid this would hurt him in his season of Survivor but what ended up hurting him was the fact that he played like an idiot.  He couldn’t be trusted and he was constantly flip flopping and talking religion and honor and all kinds of stuff that doesn’t belong in the game of Survivor.  I don’t know how Brandon gets on this show as a favorite.  He has to be there just to keep the Hantz name alive in the game.  I don’t see him as a threat to win this game.  He is too unstable to win.


Corinne Kaplan – 33, Gabon

Survivor: Gabon - Earth's Last EdenCorinne was the 12th person voted out of her season of Survivor and was a member of the jury.  I don’t remember her at all.  She feels like one that was way down the list of people the Survivor producers would have wanted back on the show but since Russell has already said no and they can’t keep going back to Boston Rob, they got down to Corinne.




Brenda Lowe – 30, Nicaragua

brenda lowe survivor caramoaBrenda Lowe is a pretty girl.  That seems to be about her only qualification to be back on Survivor Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites.  She managed to last long enough on her season to make it to the jury but that was more of a function of her flying below the radar than being any real threat of any kind.




Dawn Meehan – 42, South Pacific

GALLERYDawn made the mistake on her season of Survivor of making an alliance with Cochran.  He of course screwed her over and she was voted out.  She did manage to make it to the jury but it was again more of a function of her flying below the radar than any real ability.  Her coming on to Survivor Caramoan seems again like the producers were desperate to get former contestants to agree to be on the show.  Dawn is in great shape and should be able to go far in the game physically but if she makes more bad decisions like aligning with Cochran, she won’t last long.


Erik Reichenbach – 27, Micronesia

erik reichenbach survivor caramoaErik was on the first season of fans vs. favorites in Micronesia.  Erik also has the distinction of being the dumbest person to ever play the game of Survivor.  He had won individual immunity and for some reason allowed the women to talk him in to giving up that immunity so they could vote him off the game.  We’ll see if he has wised up at all since his experience or if he will allow himself to be manipulated by anything with boobs and a smile.



Phillip Sheppard – 54, Redemption Island

A Mystery PackagePhillip thinks he is a great Survivor player because he made it to the final of his season of Survivor.  What he seems to not understand, despite everyone around him telling him repeatedly, that he only made it that far because he is one of the craziest people to play the game.  Boston Rob was a genius taking Phillip to the final.  No way would Phillip beat him.  Phillip is one of the most annoying players we’ve had in a long time so putting him on the favorites team doesn’t make sense.  If it was another season of heroes vs. villains, I’d get it.  He could be a villain.  Phillip is not a threat to win this game.


Those are the “favorites” for this season of Survivor Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites.  They will be playing against 10 regular people who are fans of the show.

In the premiere episode:

In the premiere, we have seen already that the favorites team is not all that formidable.  They won the initial reward challenge but lost the first immunity challenge of the game.  I’d say that overall, the fans teams is stronger than the favorites team at this point in the game.  The favorites team is going to need to come back and win the immunity challenge next week or they will be getting behind the 8 ball very early in the game.

francesca hogi survivor caramoaFrancesca made Survivor history tonight being the first person in Survivor history to be the first person voted out of the game twice.  The vote showed that for some reason, people are listening to Phillip, and it showed that Cochran is still an idiot.

This is my favorite reality show and I’m so happy that it is back on.  I’ll be watching it every week and keeping you updated on the show.  Be sure to let me know who you like and how you think the game is going.

Survivor Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites airs on CBS Wednesdays at 7:00.















2 Comments on Survivor Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites Premiere

  1. Similar to Russell on Heroes v Villains, no one has seen Malcolm play as this season was recorded before Malcolm’s first season aired, so he has to be in a good position since no one on the show had ever seen him before, plus, since he shot the seasons back to back, his mindset has to be in a good place.

    • Midwest Mike // February 16, 2013 at 2:23 pm //

      That’s a good point. Malcolm will still be viewed as a threat because he’s young, strong, and male. If he doesn’t get in the right alliance he could be in trouble. People vote stupidly early in the game. During the first part, you need to keep your team as strong as possible but people get stupid and vote out perceived threats.

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