For this week, I’m just going to recap the finale and then analyze the final two competitors.
The Final Immunity Challenge
On Day 49 David, Moana and Sharn made their way to the last immunity challenge of the season. Similar to previous seasons, Jonathan brought out the finalists’ loved ones before the challenge started.
– Sharn got to see her husband and four children
– Moana got to see her wife and sister
– David got to see his wife and daughter. David has two sons living in Australia, who were unable to attend. However, Jonathan let David talk to them on the phone.
After having some time with their loved ones, the final three went on to compete in the final challenge- which was a variation of the Survivor classic “Hand on Hard Idol.” Traditional the last immunity challenge in the early US seasons, the final three competitors must hold a hand onto an idol in the center- with their feet on two beams. The contestants must hold that stance for a long as they can. The last one standing wins immunity. For this version of the challenge, the final three had their own stations. In those stations, one hand had to be on the idol while the other was pulling a rope from behind. These stations were also placed in the ocean, making the challenge more difficult with the waves crashing. After about 90 minutes, David won the challenge- guaranteeing him a spot in the Final 2.
At Tribal Council, Moana Hope became the 21st person voted out of the game and the ninth member of the jury. With David having won immunity, he was more than likely going to win against either Moana or Sharn. However, David later admitted he was a bit worried about going up against Moana and for good reasons: while David had played a great game and some friends on the jury, Moana could’ve taken some jury votes away from David given that David rubbed some people the wrong way. With that, Moana was voted out.
And the Winner is…
After an oddly edited Final Tribal Council, David Genat was declared Sole Survivor after a 8-1 jury vote against Sharn Coombes. Between the two, David was deemed to be more loyal than Sharn- who kept flip-flopping on her alliances. Sure, David had his flaws in the way he treated some of his tribemates. For the jury, it seemed to come down to who they respected the most. Sharn’s lone vote came from Moana, who voted against David as she was still raw about David not taking her to the final 2.
Even though it took David two tries to win, it’s impressive that a player like him was able to win an All Stars season. In the US version, it’s common for players that play back-to-back seasons to place better than they did in their previous season- since some seasons film while the other one is airing. That seemed to be the case for David, which was a huge advantage for him. However in those first few episode of Season 4, David was a pretty strategic player- making it impressive that he was able to get as far as he did. I think what got David his win was his ability to make genuine connections with the people he played with. He started out the game by being a double agent on the original Vakama, leading to the blindside of Daisy. When the tribes swapped, David was switched over to Mokuta with most of his Vakama allies. While on Mokuta, he built more connections. With Mokuta winning most of the immunity challenges, David was able to stay in the game. Come the merge, the new Mokuta tribe had the numbers. I think David’s ability to go with the flow of the game helped him out as well- even if it meant cutting ties with former allies.
Even after playing the game for 100 days, Sharn ended up finishing in second place again. However her performance this time around was worse than her first. In her first season, Sharn was able to score four of the nine jury votes- given that the people who voted for her felt that the best strategic player should win the game. Sharn’s game this time around didn’t change all that much: she cut many ties and broke a few promises. A good example of this would be earlier in the game when there was the tie vote between Phoebe and Moana. Sharn originally voted for Moana but on the revote flipped it to Phoebe. During the Jacqui vote when the tribe were on the verge of drawing rocks, she promised the former new Vakamas that she’d stick with them on the next vote. From her flips to her lies, Sharn lost the game again.
Final Thoughts & The Future of AU Survivor
As a whole, Australian Survivor All Stars was a mixed bag of a season. As per usual with All Star seasons, it ended up disappointing fans and dragged in the weeks after the merge. I don’t think the season was a complete bust: there were some good moments here and there but that was mostly in the first few weeks. Come the merge, David was the one saving the season from being a complete snooze. Of the five seasons from the revived AU show, this is easily my least favorite.
As stated weeks before, production on 2020’s second season of Australian Survivor has been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Seeing the way thing are, I wouldn’t be surprised if there isn’t another season this year from AU– which is a bummer. Whenever it comes back, I’ll be here to recap it.
Congrats to David on his win and I’ll see all of you next season!
I'm a writer/journalist with a passion for music and pop culture. Having graduated from King's College in Wilkes-Barre, PA in 2014, I've been looking for a platform in which I can share my passions. Since 2009, I've been posting to my own blog- The Walrus' Music Blog- via Blogger. I'm also the author of two self-published books, "The Camp: Stories from the Summer" and "The College: Stories from King's." Together, the two books cover the story of my life from 2004 to 2014. I've been lucky enough to interview several of my favorite musicians over the years and go to concerts from time to time. I'm also very devoted to the CBS reality TV show Survivor, which I started watching in 2002 when its fourth season started. I currently live in New Jersey.