How the Survivor jury voted, and horrifying news about Probst’s Hantz vs. Hantz idea

The Survivor South Pacific jury’s votes have been revealed by its members, and all but three voted for winner Sophie Clarke. Meanwhile, Brandon Hantz has horrifying news about his return to the game, which is even more terrifying considering Jeff Probst’s ridiculous, franchise-killing plan to bring back Russell Hantz to face off against his nephew.

Coach received votes from Cochran (which we saw on TV), Edna, and Rick. Everyone else voted for Sophie; Albert received zero votes. CBS usually puts the final votes online, but has not yet done so, continuing its frustrating trend of failing to reveal final vote totals during the finale. We saw three votes for Coach at the start of the live broadcast, and it’s safe to assume we would have seen more had there been any.

Here’s how everyone voted: Edna tweeted, “I voted for Coach for his best game of manipulation, and I think Cochran and Rick did too.” Rick confirmed that vote in an interview with Rob Cesternino.

Brandon told Zap2it he voted for Sophie because “she played the most straight-up game to me. She didn’t tell me she was going to do this or that. She won challenges, she was a threat in challenges.” Ozzy told HitFix that he almost voted for Coach (“I really wanted to vote for him. I really just wanted him to tell me that he tried to play a game of honesty and integrity and it wasn’t possible for him and so he lied and manipulated people.”) but instead voted for Sophie because she “aligned herself really well, she played a great game, she won Immunity challenges and I respected the fact that she beat me, so I had to give her my vote.”

Meanwhile, you’ll recall that, during the reunion show, when Probst went into the audience to talk to Russell and insist he further damage his already damaged nephew, Jeff Probst said, “I know what next season is–let me know if you like this. Russell on one tribe, Brandon on the other.” That’s when the audience full of people I quickly decided I hated began clapping and cheering, as if this was anything other than lunacy.

Bringing people back is a bad idea, of course, but let’s also stop pretending that having two returnees on opposite tribes is someone versus someone else. It’s not; it never has been. They’re not even necessarily leaders of their tribes, which Russell proved when his tribe voted him out during Redemption Island.

Anyway, the idea of this happening is much higher than it should be. Let’s not forget that Probst is in love with the idea of Russell returning, and he insisted Russell will be back.

And in the interview linked above, Brandon says definitively that he will be, too. “You’ll see me again. It’s gonna be different next time,” he said. It’s unclear if his confidence is just confidence, inside information, or from his direct line to God, but I would not bet against it.

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.