Ultimate Survivor Tribal Council Bracket – Strategic Division Round Two

Now that you’ve had a week to get your strategies strategized and your alliances aligned… everybody drop your buffs. We’re switching things up. The votes have been tallied, and the next round of our Strategic bracket is upon is. Keep reading to see who survived to see another week, and who came up short in their trickery…

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Voting criteria:

  • You decide what makes a Tribal worthy of your vote. Was it your favourite? The best? Most memorable? Most dramatic? It’s up to you. We’ve organized them by theme, but you’re under no obligation to pick the most strategic tribal to represent the Strategic bracket.
  • Tribal Council is defined as everything that happened in episode from when the tribe gets to Tribal Council through to the Final Words of the eliminated contestant. Things that didn’t make the air were out of bounds for consideration when putting the list together.
  • For Final Tribal Councils, the reveal of the winner is out of bounds (except for the first Final Tribal). This takes place at a different time and place and is aired on a different episode.

Voting ends on Tuesday, March 22nd.

1. Parvati’s Double Idol Play vs 8. Russell Idols Out a Kelly


Parvati’s Double Idol Play – Heroes vs. Villains, episode 10 “Going Down in Flames”

Looks like an idol saved this Tribal for the next round, and deservedly so. Everyone’s fan fave JT was no match for one of the most iconic hidden immunity idol plays in Survivor history. Parvati saved her “debaucherous little villains” after a lot of cross-talk and some sneaky idol swapping that led to her having two idols—enough to protect Sandra and the real target, Jerri, in order to knock the Heroes down a peg.

Read more about this moment in our 30 from 30 series.


Russell Idols Out a Kelly – Samoa, episode 9 “Tastes Like Chicken”

Never bet against Russel Hantz having an idol—well, except for the above tribal’s turn of events. His attempt at turning around his tribe’s Samoa fortunes beat out Jenn Brown’s ultimately-failed attempt at doing the same. Savage! But will this little troll bridge the gap to the next round? Or will he fall victim like so many men have to Parvati’s charm? Your vote may be the only thing standing in the way. (We promise the game isn’t rigged).

1. Parvati's double idol play vs. 8. Russell idols out a Kelly

  • 1. Parvati's double idol play (89% Votes)
  • 8. Russell idols out a Kelly (11% Votes)

Total Voters: 299

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4. Going to Rocks vs 5. Stick to the Plan


Going to Rocks – Blood vs. Water, episode 12 “Rustle Feathers”

If a rock draw didn’t win this match-up, I’d be really disappointed in our readers. Only the second tie-breaker rock draw in Survivor history, this epic Tribal from Blood vs. Water drew the lucky colored rock and gets to stay in the game one more round. (Sorry, Penner).


Stick to the Plan – San Juan del Sur, episode 10 “This is Where We Build Trust”

I was tempted to consult a thesaurus and use a bunch of words that Keith probably doesn’t understand, but instead I’ll just stick to the plan. One of the least strategic plays in this bracket, Keith Nale made up for it with his iconic phrasing that turned the middle phase of the game around (for better or worse) and gave us some smooth gameplay by Natalie that sowed the seeds of her victory path.

4. Going to rocks vs. 5. Stick to the plan

  • 4. Going to rocks (73% Votes)
  • 5. Stick to the plan (27% Votes)

Total Voters: 302

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2. The Three Amigos vs 10. Jeremy Saves Stephen


The Three Amigos – Caramoan, episode 10 “Zipping Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”

You think Steve Martin and Chevy Chase ever had to worry about hidden idols? Malcolm’s bold move in Caramoan beat out Mike’s bluff from Worlds Apart, which proves that when you’re fighting from the bottom, walk the idol walk. Or else you’ll be walking down to the confessional booth. (Which, coincidentally, most of the Three Amigos did in the coming days). Can everyone’s favorite non-Joe-or-Spencer player bluff his way into the next round?


Jeremy Saves Stephen – Worlds Apart, episode 10 “Like Selling Your Soul to the Devil”

If anything, Malcolm’s best moment in Caramoan was “hold up, bro“. Which is why it’s complete recency bias BS that Jeremy’s idol play for Stephen last fall beat the former out last round. But something, something democracy respect the votes blah blah… Either way, Jeremy’s shocking-yet-ultimately-fruitless loyalty play survived for another vote.

2. The Three Amigos vs. 10. Jeremy saves Stephen

  • 2. The Three Amigos (63% Votes)
  • 10. Jeremy saves Stephen (37% Votes)

Total Voters: 297

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3. Cagayan’s Chaotic Merge vs 11. Cirie’s 3-2-1


Cagayan’s Chaotic Merge – Cagayan, episode 6 “Head of the Snake”

Kass may have had a zero percent chance of winning Cagayan according to Spencer, but this Tribal had a whopping 88% chance of winning its seed last round. One of the biggest moments in a season full of them, can the merge vote continue to cause Chaos in future rounds? Or will it need a swing vote to turn things around? I’ll be hiding in the Spy Shack trying to find out.


Cirie’s 3-2-1 – Panama, episode 12 “Perilous Scramble”

China‘s Final Tribal flopped harder than Amanda Kimmel last round, and the leaf-fearing strategist prevailed. Cirie’s final six numbers game counted its way to the top, and didn’t even need any help from Shane this time. Here’s to seeing if she can wrangle a plurality of your votes this time…

3. Cagayan's chaotic merge vs. 11. Cirie's 3-2-1

  • 3. Cagayan's chaotic merge (57% Votes)
  • 11. Cirie's 3-2-1 (43% Votes)

Total Voters: 292

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The Rest of the Bracket

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Blindsides Bracket

Theatrics Bracket

Historic Bracket