The first Final Three of Survivor
|Description||The three final contestants who plead their cases to the Jury to win the game|
|Appearance(s)|| Cook Islands|
Heroes vs Villains
Introduced during the events of Survivor: Cook Islands, Jeff Probst later explained that the reason behind adopting this end game scenario would be to prevent a strong, well-liked individual face off against a less respected individual.
Whilst fan reaction to the change has been received positively, several Survivors have adopted taking two players to the end with them who have not done as much or were obnoxious which in turn has coined a player who fits this mould as a "goat". It is also very common that only two of the three players receive votes anyway.
This format has been increasingly common and has been seen in twelve seasons. A Final Three with a 9-person Jury started in Survivor: Cook Islands and continued through Survivor: Fiji. This configuration has also been seen in six seasons, spanning from Survivor: Samoa through Survivor: One World totalling 8 seasons. A Final Three with a 7-person Jury was seen in Survivor: China and Survivor: Gabon, while a Final Three with an 8-person Jury was featured in Survivor: Philippines and Survivor: Caramoan.
- In seasons with a Final Three, there are five winners who have each defeated two finalists of the opposite gender from theirs in their respective seasons (Todd Herzog and Bob Crowley, Natalie White, Sophie Clarke and John Cochran). Next, there are two winners who have each defeated two finalists of the same gender as his/hers in their respective seasons (Fabio Birza and Kim Spradlin). Lastly, there are five winners who have each defeated finalists of both genders in their respective seasons (Yul Kwon, Earl Cole and Sandra Diaz-Twine, Rob Mariano and Denise Stapley).
- China and Philippines are the only seasons whose respective Final Threes all received votes.
- Coincidentally, both seasons are the only seasons with a Final Three that have a Final Four Reward Challenge and whose final episode only has one elimination.
- However, Caramoan featured a Final Three that also had a final four reward challenge, but featured an medical evacuation and a regular elimination.