Sole Survivor
Devon Shelley S1.png
Survivor Gameplay
Description: The person who has earned the highest number of votes from the jury.
Appearances: Every season

The Sole Survivor is the title held by the winner of Survivor, as determined by a plurality of votes from the jury. It is the task of the jury to award the title to the contestant who most thoroughly embodies the show's three-word slogan: "Outwit, Outplay, Outlast."

Criteria[edit | edit source]

There are no formal constraints on the rationale that jury members may employ in choosing the Sole Survivor. The only built-in requirement of eligibility for the title is to survive all 39 days of competition.

At the Final Tribal Council, the finalists are subjected to questioning by the jury, who may ask any questions or make any statements that they feel will help them make the best decision possible. As there is no objective definition of 'best' in this case, the methods by which contestants have won the game, and the reasons adopted by jury members in voting for them, have varied widely throughout the history of the series.

Jury members are expected, however, to choose Sole Survivors that have credibly embodied the show's three-word premise:

  • Outwit: The strategic element; the ability to outmaneuver other contestants and eliminate them in a manner conducive to one's own long-term success in the game. This component of the game may include alliance formation/management, the execution of blindsides, the use of Hidden Immunity Idols, or any other manifestation of guile, deception, or strategic command.
  • Outplay: The social element; the ability to bring about one's desired strategic goals without sacrificing one's social standing or alienating other contestants emotionally. A strong candidate will remain respected while playing an efficacious game.
  • Outlast: The physical element; the ability to withstand the harsh realities of being a contestant for 39 days, such as harsh weather, grueling challenges, and deprivation of the necessities of life. It is expected that the Sole Survivor will have not only endured the physical difficulties of the game, but indeed will have borne them with enthusiasm and grace.

It should be noted that in the game of Survivor likeability and respect are not always fungible qualities. In some cases, the winner may have played a game strategically dominant enough to overcome the fact that other finalists were more likeable. At other times, the opposite may be the case, and a more sociable player may win due to the quality of their personality even in the presence of a more strategically "active" but socially inept competitor. It is up to the idiosyncratic interpretation of the jury to determine who has fulfilled all three elements of "Outwit, Outplay, Outlast," and it is up to each finalist to present a compelling argument in their own favor, emphasizing their strengths and eliding their weaknesses, at the Final Tribal Council.

Prizes[edit | edit source]

The Sole Survivor receives a check of $1,000,000, to be received after the season finale. The winner, and all contestants present in the live Reunion Show will also receive an extra $10,000 appearance fee, which immediately follows the finale broadcast.

List of Sole Survivors[edit | edit source]

Season Winner Runner(s)-up Jury Vote
Margin
Survivor: Borneo Devon Shelley S1.png Devon Shelley Carolyn Roberts S1.png Carolyn Roberts 7-0
Survivor: Africa Janette Archuleta.png Janette Archuleta Shelly Lincoln.png Shelly Lincoln 7-0
Survivor: Java Jordan S3.png Jordan Young Camila S3.png Camila Austin 5-2
Survivor: Ecuador Erika S4.png Erika Taylor Lucas S4.png Lucas Brooks 4-2-2
Rachel S4.png Rachel Phelps
Survivor: Blood vs Water Alec S5.png Alec Lewis Stacy S5.png Stacy Daniels 4-3-1
Gabriel S5.png Gabriel Gray
Survivor: Papua New Guinea Susana S6.png Susana Strong Elisa S6.png Elisa River 4-3
Survivor: All Stars Sean All Stars.png Sean Lawrence Ethel All Stars.png Ethel Herring 10-0-0
Brielle All Stars.png Brielle Hart
Survivor: Nepal Rhea S8.png Rhea Sharpe Marcus S8.png Marcus Schmid 8-1
Survivor: Palawan Talon S9.png Talon Rowe Elijah S9.png Elijah Utley 7-2-0
Valerie S9.png Valerie Falls
Survivor: Cuba Clare S10.png Clare Rice Mateo S10.png Mateo Villanueva 8-0-0
Reid S10.png Reid McCann
Survivor: Worlds Apart Selina S11.png Selina Kelsey Brock S11.png Brock Melville 8-0-0
Maverick S11.png Maverick Harbor
Survivor: Cagayan Damian S12.png Damian Masters Micah S12.png Micah Potts 6-3
Survivor: Japan Jakob S13.png Jakob Mason Eliott S13.png Eliott Basso 5-4-1
Nathaniel S13.png Nathaniel Miller
Survivor: Fiji Jaylen S14.png Jaylen Trevino Liberty S14.png Liberty Wilkerson 6-5-0
Clyde S14.png Clyde James
Survivor: Heroes vs Villains Parker HvV.png Parker Banks Clare HvV.png Clare Rice 5-4-0
Mateo HvV.png Mateo Villanueva
Survivor: Anarchy Frank S16.png Frank Gross Zelma S16.png Zelma Russell 5-4-0
David S16.png David Messinger
Survivor: Tokelau Hanna S17.png Hanna Marin Glenn S17.png Glenn Stone 5-4-0
Jax S17.png Jax Hamilition
Survivor: Mexico Ezra S18.png Ezra Miller Bret S18.png Bret Holmes 4-3-2
Andrew S18.png Andrew Fischer
Survivor: Myanmar Terry S19.png Terry Flynn Andrea S19.png Andrea Benson 8-0-0
Melany S19.png Melany Hastings
Survivor: Madagascar Bridgette S20.png Bridgette Kelly Nickolas S20.png Nickolas Shields 10-0
Survivor: Blood vs Water II Chelsea S21.png Chelsea Sawyer Annette S21.png Annette Dukoo 4-3-0
Remington S21.png Remington Loredo
Survivor: Mamanuca Islands Noah S22.png Noah Seavers Mila S22.png Mila Sanyo 5-3-1
Samuel S22.png Samuel Grey
Survivor: Peru Jafari S23.png Jafari King Serena S23.png Serena Jackson 5-3-0
Pedro S23.png Pedro Boston
Survivor: Sri Lanka Layne S24.png Layne Andrews Aiden S24.png Aiden Daniels 4-3-3
Andrew S24.png Andrew Patrick
Survivor: Montserrat Amie S25.png Amie Dubois Stefanie S25.png Stefanie Garcia 4-3-3
Beth S25.png Beth Washington
Survivor: Bali Octavia S26.png Octavia Bauman Shaina S26.png Shaina Michaels 8-1
Survivor: Italy Adrianna S27.png Adrianna Crawford Isamu S27.png Isamu Hoke 8-2-0
Hale S27.png Hale Braun
Survivor: Skeleton Coast Ying Yue S28.png Ying Yue Li Callen S28.png Callen Roberts 8-2-0
Julia S28.png Julia Webb
Survivor: Khao Sok Everett S29.png Everett Fields Rosanny S29.png Rosanny Rivera 5-4
Survivor: Champions vs Challengers Terry S30.png Terry Flynn Mya S30.png Mya Walls 7-2-1
Thaddius S30.png Thaddius Wright

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • There are currently 15 male winners, and 15 female winners.
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