Results: Fans Pick Who Should Win ‘Survivor’ Season 42

Survivor Season 42 Episode 13 finale
Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment

The tribe has spoken. We asked Survivor fans who should win Season 42, and the results are in. But only time will tell if participants in our poll predicted the correct winner.

The Survivor Season 42 finale airs Wednesday, May 25 on CBS, and the three-hour episode will mimic the Season 41 finale. The jury’s pick will be announced at the end of the two-hour finale, with the reunion happening immediately after. But thanks to the COVID-19 filming scheduling requiring 41 and 42 to film back-to-back, the players don’t know that. Count this as the last of the many unexpected twists from Survivor‘s new shortened format.

Speaking of, Jeff Probst chatted with TV Insider before the Season 42 finale, revealing that the shortened game “is here to stay.”

“I’ll be completely transparent for future players and fans. This new 26-day game centered around limited supplies, no food, and penalties for losing was not designed as a one-off,” he said. “We designed this specifically to give us a new game to play, and we believe there are still a lot of layers in this new game that we haven’t even begun to explore.”

Probst adores this Final Five of Jonathan “Goliath” Young, Maryanne Oketch, Lindsay Dolashewich, Mike Turner, and Romeo Escobar. But who do fans think should win?

Survivor Season 42 Final Five

Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment

Our poll ran from May 20 to May 25. And during its active days, it brought in 2,435 votes total. As part of the poll, we broke down each players’ highlights of the season, pointing out their strengths and most impressive feats. And if you’re looking for the winner to have a strong combination of strategic, social, and physical skills, the signs point to Lindsay.

Lindsay has performed well throughout the season. She has been part of group blindsides and is one of the only players to beat Jonathan in individual challenges. But her strategic moves pale in comparison to Maryanne’s. Maryanne has proved herself a silent but deadly competitor, using peoples’ biases about her emotions as a weapon to stay safe and build alliances. With the help of her extra vote, she singlehandedly orchestrated the 3-2-2 blindside that kicked Omar out of the game, taking out a strategist who has been secretly running things all season long. If Omar made it to the Final Three, he likely would have won.

But the poll participants felt differently about what the most impressive feats of the season have been. Of the 2,435 votes, Jonathan got about 49 percent with 1,203 votes. Maryanne came in second at about 23 percent with 569 votes. Lindsay came in third at about 14 percent with 361 votes. Mike came in fourth at about 11 percent with 285 votes. And Romeo came in fifth at less than one percent with 17 votes.

If you prefer a strong strategist to win, Jonathan’s poll victory may come as a surprise. While he’s undoubtedly one of the best physical players Survivor has seen, he’s not a savvy strategist. During his one attempt to lead strategy in Episode 9, he merely instructed Lindsay, Maryanne, and Tori to vote for Drea, refusing to listen to any logic about how his plan could backfire.

He also told Maryanne she should offer herself up as a chopping block decoy to keep Drea out of the loop, failing to ask Maryanne if she’d be OK with taking that risk. He thought it was the best idea, so he brushed off anyone else’s and expected the women to follow him. That’s neither smart Tribal Council strategy nor a good way to make alliances in the jury.

As for Mike, he has played a strong social game that has kept him on the right side of almost every vote. He has also helped orchestrate group blindsides. But his most impressive strategic moves have been led by people like Omar. And Romeo has basically let everyone else play for him.

The point of the game isn’t just to win physical challenges. Outwit, outplay, outlast. None of the players can say they’ve been perfect at all three, but Maryanne and Jonathan have created moments that will go down in Survivor history. There’s still one more episode left to see what final moves the Final Five can pull off.

The Survivor Season 42 finale will be two hours long and will be immediately followed by the reunion episode.

Survivor, Season 42 Finale, Wednesday, March 25, 8/7c, CBS