Throughout 40 seasons, Survivor has only ended in a tie one time, when Domenick Abbate and Wendell Holland each received five jury votes to win Survivor: Ghost Island. Their fellow final three member, Laurel Johnson, then had to join the jury and break the tie, awarding the money and title of Sole Survivor to Holland.
But one castaway recently revealed that one season — from a decade prior to “Ghost Island” — almost did as well because she considered forcing a tie on purpose.
Eliza Orlins Almost Forced a Tie Just to See What Would Happen
In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, two-time Survivor castaway Eliza Orlins revealed that during her second season, “Micronesia,” she really wanted to force a tie between the final two of Amanda Kimmel and Parvati Shallow.
Orlins recalled that the entire “Micronesia” cast was really surprised there was a final two instead of a final three because a final three had been used for several seasons prior to “Micronesia,” plus it left the possibility of a tie wide open.
“All of us were shocked that there was a final 2 instead of a final 3, no one more so than poor Cirie (I love her!), who would have basically swept the jury had she made it to the end. That meant we ended up with an eight-person jury and a final 2, creating the potential for a deadlocked jury, something that had never been possible before and has never been since (considering Laurel became a de facto jury member in Ghost Island),” said Orlins.
Going into the final Tribal Council, Orlins felt confident she knew how everyone else was voting — “Ozzy, James, and Erik would be voting for Amanda to win” and “Jason, Alexis, Natalie, and Cirie would be voting for Parvati.” She figured since she really didn’t care one way or the other, maybe it would be fun to force a tie.
“At the time, I was completely indifferent between the two of them, so I had absolutely no investment in the winner. I realized I could force a tie by voting for Amanda, and I thought that might be an exciting situation for the show and the fans. I actually even asked a producer if they wanted a tie, but obviously, they cannot interfere in any way with the outcome, so of course, they didn’t answer.”
However, Orlins admitted that Shallow made her case to the jury better than Kimmel did at the final Tribal Council, so Orlins had to go with Shallow to win.
Orlins Is Still a Superfan
When she appeared on the show, Orlins was a self-described “Survivor superfan in her early 20s who could barely contain her enthusiasm.”
But even now, 13 years after the last time she played, she still considers herself a superfan.
“I’ve never missed an episode,” said Orlins. “I was a superfan during the first season, when I applied in college in 2004, and I’m still a superfan today. I used to live-tweet every episode and still try to provide Twitter commentary (find me @elizaorlins) and love getting into heated debates about every last move the players make.”
She also said that whenever a new person is cast on the show who is from the New York City area, she tries to reach out and welcome them to the Survivor family.
“I’m also the go-to host for episode-watching hangouts in NYC, or at least I was before the pandemic started and the show was still on,” Orlins revealed. “But we’ll get that up and running again as soon as it’s safe to do so and the show makes its triumphant return!”
Survivor will most likely not return until fall 2021 with season 41, which should begin filming in April.