Not Going Down Without a Fight is the season finale of Survivor: Kaôh Rōng.
No footage from Day 35 was aired.
Mark the chicken is making noises early in the morning at Dara camp, much to the annoyance of Cydney Gillon. Tai Trang goes to get the chicken to make it be quiet. Mark sits on Tai's neck while they watch the sun rise.
Tai laments that he cannot use his Hidden Immunity Idol anymore, so he feels vulnerable. Tai checks on Aubry Bracco and remarks that every time host Jeff Probst shows up on the beach, they lose someone. They talk about staying together and Aubry getting close to Cydney and hope they can take out Michele Fitzgerald.
Aubry says Michele has good social ties so they do not want to take her to the end. Michele tells Cydney if she does not win immunity, then she will be in trouble. Michele tells Cydney she wants to move forward with her. Cydney knows everyone wants to take her to the end. Aubry, Cydney, and Michele talk about taking three girls to the end. Michele says it is anyone's game.
At the Reward Challenge, the castaways must race under a net, slide tiles to a target, then use a machete to move tiles through obstacles to a table and then sort them into pairs. The three that do not match will reveal a combination that unlocks a box to raise a flag. The winner will get a meal to refuel spirit and body including a protein bar, steak, juice, and more.
Tai takes an early lead. Cydney falls behind, along with Michele. Aubry picks up a bunch that did not make it to try again. Aubry and Michele are falling behind. Cydney gets all of hers and stacks a bunch on her machete to give it a try. Cydney drops all her tiles and has to start again. Aubry is done and starts stacking, with Tai following suit.
Aubry takes the lead and delivers a stack to her table. Michele starts stacking. Aubry gets a second stack. Cydney drops again. Michele has to start again and Aubry delivers another stack. Tai drops and has to restart. Michele finally delivers a stack.
Aubry is done and starts making pairs of her tiles. Cydney delivers one stack. Aubry thinks she has it, but one of her pairs is off. Aubry tries the combination and is off. She runs back and still does not spot her mismatched pair. Tai delivers more tiles. Aubry tries again and gets it wrong. As Tai delivers more tiles, Aubry curses and runs back. Michele brings more tiles to her table. Tai is back with his last pile and starts making combinations, as is Cydney. Aubry finds her mistake and now has the right numbers.
She tries again with her combination. Cydney tries a combination and so does Tai. Tai is wrong and so is Cydney. Aubry gets it and her flag goes up. She wins reward and runs to hug Jeff. Aubry comes over and she says that it is good to win her first individual competition.
Jeff offers to double it and let her bring one person. She can also decline to bring anyone, leaving her as the sole one. She chooses Cydney to go along with her.
Cydney and Aubry sit down at a nice table near the camp to eat their meal. Cydney is thrilled she chose her and says this makes them trust each other more. Michele thinks that Aubry should not have chosen Cydney since she chose her before.
Michele now thinks she needs a back-up plan with Tai. Michele talks to Tai, who agrees to work with her because he wants to keep his options open.
At the Final Immunity Challenge, Jeff takes back the Immunity Necklace from Cydney. The castaways must run to a platform out in the ocean to retrieve keys to get a ball and rope to drop a ladder to get another lock to get puzzle pieces to build a large three level puzzle at the top of a tower.
Aubry takes the early lead again and gets her lock, followed by Tai. The two trade the lead on several occasions, with Cydney and Michele close behind. As Tai falls behind, Aubry heads up the ladder for her last key. Tai then drops his ladder and heads up. Aubry heads back with the last key. Cydney is up the ladder and so is Michele. Aubry is back out in the water with a decent-sized lead. Tai and Cydney are close, followed by Michele. Aubry gets her puzzle pieces and heads back.
Cydney gets her pieces fast. Cydney is close behind Aubry, followed by Tai, then Michele. Aubry starts on her puzzle as does Cydney. Tai completes the first level and takes the lead. Michele also has hers done. Tai completes the second level and moves on to the final level. Tai is on the last level and getting close to finishing. Michele tries to catch up and is close. Michele is on the third level now too. Tai tries to finish his last level, while Michele catches up.
Michele finishes the last level and crows then kicks her puzzle over to win immunity. Jeff remarks that no one saw that coming. Michele gets her Immunity Necklace and Jeff congratulates her. The win guarantee her a spot in the final three and Aubry, Cydney, and Tai have to cannibalize their alliance.
Back at camp, Michele is thrilled that she is in the finals. Aubry and Tai go for water and talk about taking out Cydney. Aubry needs Tai more than ever and says that it will be two votes for Cydney and it could go to a fire making challenge. Tai asks Aubry if she knows how to make fire and she is worried that Tai might turn on her.
Michele assures Cydney that she will not write down her name and Cydney says she will vote with Michele. Cydney and Michele agree that Aubry would get more jury votes. They agree that Tai cannot speak well for himself to the jury and he is better to take along. Michele says that Tai will vote with them as long as it is not his name that gets written down. Cydney wonders if she should practice her fire skills just in case, but Michele reassures her.
Tai talks to Cydney and Michele and they tell him that they are voting out Aubry. Tai says he is in shock. Aubry thinks that Tai is being shady and worries that he will take her out. She says she will not go down without a fight as the Dara tribe heads to Tribal Council.
The jury comes in – Neal Gottlieb, Nick Maiorano, Debbie Wanner, Scot Pollard, Julia Sokolowski, Kyle Jason, and Joe del Campo. Michele says the puzzle just clicked. Jeff asks Tai about the vibe at camp since he only has two choices to vote. Tai says there is no alliance now. Aubry rolls her eyes.
Jeff asks Aubry how big this is tonight and she says that the person who goes to jury tonight will have tons of information to give. Cydney says that you have to pick people to sit beside you that are not as big of a threat. Aubry says it is not easy to determine what a threat is.
Aubry says some of the things she sees people say about her that are threats are things she thinks of as a weakness. Cydney says it is a 'me' game, not a 'we' game right now. Tai agrees and says that a million is a big number. Michele says she feels nervous and wants to use the power wisely.
Jeff calls for the vote. As he reads the votes – Aubry, Cydney, Aubry, and Cydney – it is revealed that there is a tie. Julia is thrilled. Jeff asks if they need a revote or if the votes are locked in. Michele and Tai agree that they are locked in. Jeff says it is time to go to a fire-making challenge.
Aubry and Cydney start making fire and Aubry has flames going. Cydney cannot get a flame going at all and Aubry has a huge blaze going and just needs to get it to aim at the rope. Cydney gets a tiny flame going and then it goes out. Aubry's rope starts to burn.
Aubry messed hers up and was close to burning it through and made an adjustment that knocked her height over. Cydney is still struggling to get a flame. Aubry's fire is close to the bottom and the flame is gone. Aubry finally gets it built back up, burning through the rope, sending Cydney to the jury.
Cydney cries and says she wanted to pay off her mom's mortgage and get her some health insurance. Jeff tells Cydney to bring up her torch and snuffs it out.
Back live at the studio, Jeff introduces Cydney's mom, Tangelea Gillon, at the live finale show. She is crying and says she did not know what Cydney was going to say.
Cydney's mom says that it was hard to watch her struggling earlier in the season and says she started crying in the kitchen. She says she is so proud of her baby. Jeff remarks that bodybuilding must run in the family.
Michele says that was crappy feeling and Aubry agrees it was brutal. Aubry says it was the last thing she thought she would be doing, but is proud of herself that she pulled it out. Tai said Cydney did not think the vote would go that way.
Michele agrees that she did not think it would go that way either. Michele says she has seen Aubry as a huge threat for a long time. Michele tells Tai that he just handed Aubry a million-dollar win. Michele says she is grateful that she gets to sit with them and duke it out.
Tai tells them that Jeff did not say that it is up to the jury and says that is what he usually says. He thinks there is another challenge, but Aubry says there is not. The next day, Michele picks up Tree Mail, which reveals that there is a final challenge and the winner will decide who stays and goes. Tai remarks he knew it. Aubry says that they thought they had finished there is Final Two. Tai says the game is individual now. Tai says it is anybody's game and Aubry says it is do or die for her.
Jeff greets them at the last challenge and takes back the Immunity Necklace from Michele. Jeff says immunity is not up for grabs and confirms to Aubry, Michele, and Tai that they are the Final Three. Jeff says there is a twist and that they will vote someone out tonight. He says that they will not be voting each other. The winner of the challenge can vote out a jury member. If the winner of the challenge is concerned about someone not voting for them, they can remove that juror from the jury.
The castaways must balance on a wobbly beam on springs while stacking balls on stands. The first person to finish can vote out a jury member. Jeff remarks that this was the "Dexterity" option from the first Immunity Challenge, but that none of the tribes chose it since it was optional and difficult.
The challenge is a close affair. Michele is on her fourth ball with two away, but then drops and Tai takes the lead with four. Jeff reminds them to be careful when they jump off the platform. Aubry loses all of hers and Tai's stack goes tumbling too. Everyone restarts and Michele takes the lead again. Michele has four with two to go. Tai has fallen behind. Michele has one ball left to go.
Aubry and Michele are neck and neck. Michele has one ball left and so does Aubry. They both place their balls, but then Aubry's stack falls and Michele wins the reward. She will get to choose a jury member to eliminate. Jeff hands her the reward and instructs her to write it on the parchment at Tribal Council. Jeff says Michele will get to read the note to let the jury know how they will be impacted. Jeff says it will be the first Tribal Council where no one on the tribe will be voted out.
Back at camp, the Final Three all hug and dance around. Tai says he was terrified and Aubry says they can all stay friends now. Michele is happy and says the Juror Removal is huge, but she does not know what she will do. She wants to think through all the possible outcomes.
Michele tells Tai she is thinking of getting rid of Joe since he will vote for Aubry for sure. Tai says it might be smarter to take Neal out since he can persuade people. Tai is hoping to get her to tip the balance in his favor without her knowing. Michele now deliberates between Joe and Neal.
Tai wants Neal out and gets Michele to think it was her idea. Michele then talks to Aubry and says that she thinks that Joe is the only one who is 100% voting in one direction plus Neal. Aubry is not happy since she knows that Joe and Neal would vote for her.
Aubry says that Tai has more votes than he is letting on and they talk about who will vote for him. Michele says Jason or Scot could go either way. She says that Jason or Scot would not vote for her. Aubry says Joe will not get up and maul anyone, but Scot might slander her.
Aubry says Tai has a good story if he can articulate it. Aubry now hopes she has planted a seed against Scot. All three talk and Aubry says Scot. Aubry says Jason and Scot are very persuasive and Tai knows that Aubry is being clever since Scot might vote against him. Michele says Scot might make a case for someone. Tai says Neal is much more dangerous. Michele says it is scary because if she takes out the wrong person, she can look stupid right before the jury votes. The tribes head to Tribal Council.
The jury – Neal, Nick, Debbie, Scot, Julia, Jason, Joe, and Cydney – comes in and take their seats. Jeff says that tomorrow night, the Final Three will get a shot to plead their case to the jury, but that tonight is something else.
Jeff says this was Michele's fourth individual win and has Michele read the parchment given to her after the challenge. She reads about voting out a jury member and jaws drop. That jury member will not get to come to the Final Tribal Council and cannot vote for the winner. Jeff says it is clear. Michele says that one vote could win or lose the game and says that she bounced ideas off Aubry and Tai too.
Michele says you could see them protecting their relationships and trying to steer her in certain ways. Aubry says this is uncharted territory since it is new. She says you can play a sure thing who will not vote for you or make a move.
Jeff says it is simple to him and asks Tai what he thinks. Tai says you can vote out someone else who might influence the jury when they speak or that might ask hard questions to you at the Final Tribal Council. Scot whispers that it sounds like Tai is referring to Jason.
Jeff says that it is like the Final Tribal Council has already started and asks Michele if she feels confident in her choice. Michele says she has as much information as she can and has chosen someone who could be very persuasive and their vote would not go for her anyway.
Michele goes to write down her vote. She comes back and the jury talks about what a twist this is. Jeff then reads the name of the jury member who will miss out on the Final Tribal Council – Neal.
Neal calls Michele a puppy suckling at the teat and does not have a chance to win before departing. Jeff says based on that, Michele made the right choice and Michele laughs and agrees. Neal says in his final words that this was a great swan song and that Michele was right to vote him out, but he thinks it will not matter since Aubry and Tai played better games.
Back at camp after Tribal Council, Mark the chicken is in a hammock and Michele says that Neal mauled her on the way out and that proved why she was right to get rid of him. Michele says this could be a roast. Aubry is upset that Neal is gone, but remains optimistic that she is still in it.
In the morning, the Final Three receive a mirror and scale at Tree Mail to check out their appearance. Michele works on her jury argument. Tai says he looks like a refugee and Aubry says her butt is gone. They pick up their breakfast and carry their food back to camp.
Tai hopes he can convince the jury and says that Scot's blindside was his big move that changed the game. He says he betrayed Scot and has to win him over and hopes that Scot respects gameplay since he is a fan of Survivor.
Aubry says that this has been a huge transformation and says that she was paralyzed by making decisions and that this game shook her out of that. Tai picks up Mark the chicken to bring him to the Final Tribal Council with them. Aubry is excited to plea her case, but says it has been all over the map.
They take their seats for the Final Tribal Council. The jury, sans Neal, comes in - Nick, Debbie, Scot, Julia, Jason, Joe, and Cydney. Jeff says that the Final Three have gone as far as they can and that the jury needs to get information to make a million dollar decision.
Nick is first and congratulates the finalists. He says there will be some animosity and some might not get questions. but statements and tells them to take advantage. He tells Michele to display intelligence, then tells Tai to display awareness, and tells Aubry to display confidence. He says his vote is up in the air and many are too.
Debbie is next and says she is proud of them and then says that Tai had some inexplicable vote switching and wants to know if he has got more than one personality in his skull. Tai says he did not flip back and forth like that. He says he was with Aubry and Scot until the merge, then Jason and Scot took over the show and were trying to vote out Aubry, so he voted against the Gondol Alliance. He says to him that it was consistent and the one time he switched was when he voted out Scot.
Debbie says she liked to watch Aubry's transformation into "geek warrior". Debbie says she helped keep Aubry in the game and then Aubry says she wanted to keep her and it scared her when Debbie had heat stroke and says it was hard but game wise, she was too much of a threat.
Julia tells Michele she was the weakest link initially and got lucky by avoiding Tribal Council for 22 days and says she was just a number and was dragged. She says she was proud when Michele voted her out and asks if it is enough to justify the win. Michele says it took her time to gain her footing. She says you have to prove that you are strong or smart coming in and being placed on Beauty. Michele says she figured it out and excelled and thought out decisions every step of the way.
Julia says Tai started out strong then fell apart at the merge. She asks him why she would vote for him. Tai says he got the tools he needed, blindsided Scot and was not weak, but found an alliance he was comfortable with to go to the end. Tai says his accomplishments early on trumped what Michele did later.
Joe is next and he says that he knows Michele's game, so is going to talk to the others. Joe says Tai is selfless and hard-working, then asks what makes him think he should win over Aubry. He says he accomplished more, found a Hidden Immunity Idol, and blindsided Scot.
Joe asks Aubry why she should win. Aubry says Tai came to her with information, but she implemented the ideas and says that if he did not have her, then he would have messed up. She says he was on the wrong side of many votes despite the advantages that he had.
Jason remarks that it is "truth time" and says that he does not know who he is voting for. He asks Michele about the Scot blindside and not knowing about it. Michele says she was not told about the vote because the alliance of four did not trust Julia, so she made a vote to tighten an alliance. She says Tai wanted her out and says she made moves to get there. Jason asks Tai the real reason he left Jason and Scot. Tai says Jason and Scot had a strong bond and that he was scared they would vote him out and that he could not relate to their conversations, calling it "savage", and says he cannot talk like that, saying he got scared of their relationship.
Cydney is up next and asks Aubry if she was gunning for her at the last Tribal Council. Aubry says the plan was to vote out Michele, but then she won immunity. Aubry says Cydney was with her all along and had good ideas because she had to vote her out. Cydney says Michele could have gone against her, but let her make fire. Aubry asks Michele if she knew they were voting out Cydney. Michele says no, but she could have flipped and says she would have saved her if she could have since she wanted to be there with her.
Scot is next and says he will make it quick. Scot says he got a Hidden Immunity Idol and did not use it and blew his advantage. He says none of the advantages did him any good. Scot says Aubry started out well then asks why he should vote for her. Aubry says Scot is a competitor and can appreciate that her style was different, but that she played with her strengths.
Scot tells Michele he would never have thought she would get there. He says Tai and Aubry got weaker and she got stronger and applauds her.
Jeff says he wants to give each of them a chance to make a final statement. Aubry says she came into this game with a rough start and her game evolved. She says she managed a lot of personalities to get there and says she tried hard in every challenge, then made fire to get to the end. Aubry says she loves this game and loves seeing what this game brings out and says she played her heart out.
Tai says this game is hard and all that the backstabbing is difficult. He says he believes goodness and kindness. He quotes a Vietnamese proverb. He says wind and waves blow us apart. He says he could not hold on to Scot.
Michele says she had to keep her cool and have faith in herself and is proud of how she played and proud of herself.
Jeff then throws it to the jury and sends them to vote. Julia votes for Michele. Joe votes for Aubry. No other votes are shown. Jeff tells Tai to say goodbye to Mark the chicken and let him go. He goes to let him loose and says he hopes no one will eat him. The jury says goodbye to Mark too.
At the Reunion Show in Los Angeles, Aubry, Michele, and Tai are front and center. Jeff says this is social politics in the jungle. The votes are Michele, Aubry, Aubry, Michele, Michele, Michele. Michele wins Survivor: Kaôh Rōng and becomes the 32nd Sole Survivor.
Challenge: Home Stretch
The castaways must race under a net crawl, then make their way to a table where they will slide tiles into a target. Once all the tiles are in the target, they must then use a machete to transport the tiles through a series of obstacles to a finish table. Next, they must sort the tiles into pairs. Three of the tiles will not match up. Those three tiles hold the combination to unlock a box. The first person to unlock their box and raise their flag wins reward.
Reward: A meal consisting of steak, vegetables, a protein bar, and refreshing drinks.
Winner: Aubry Bracco (shared with Cydney Gillon)
Challenge: Gimme Three Steps
The castaways must will race out into the ocean, climb up a stool, and retrieve a key. They will use that key to unlock a set of stairs back on the beach at the bottom of a tower. At the top of the stairs, they will find a second key. They must then head back out into the water and use that key to unlock a ball attached to a rope. Next, they must use the ball to drop a ladder back on the beach, which will get them to the second level of the tower. At the top of the ladder, they will find a third key. They must then head out one last time into the water and use that key to release a pole. They must then use the pole to knock off a bag of puzzle pieces that is on a perch above their head. Finally, must will go back to shore, climb the three levels of the tower, and use the puzzle pieces to solve a three-tiered puzzle. The first to finish wins immunity.
Winner: Michele Fitzgerald
Challenge: Stacked Up
The castaways will compete in the unchosen option from the first challenge of the season, Dexterity. The final three will use a long fork to stack balls and stands on top of one another in an attempt to get six balls and six stands on the free-standing structure. This must be done while negotiating an unstable balancing beam. The first castaway to do so wins reward.
Reward: Juror Removal
Winner: Michele Fitzgerald
| Tribal Council 12:|
Aubry (2 votes)
Cydney (2 votes)
Aubry, Cydney (2 votes each)
|“||Came here to play a game. Played one of the best games out there. I guess I wasn't as slick as I thought I was. I made all the big moves there were, and Aubry was a part of those moves, so that was the same reason I was trying to get her out as well. I am definitely looking forward to my jury service. I hope everybody chooses their words wisely.||”|
| Tribal Council 13:|
Neal (1 vote)
| REMOVED FROM JURY:|
|“||I think tonight was a great swan song to be the first ever jury member to get voted out. I think Michele voting me out of the jury was probably her only move, because I would've absolutely been a big advocate of Aubry. It was smart of Michele, but I don't think it's going to matter because there are two other competitors that played better games than she did.||”|
Final Tribal Council
| Tribal Council 14:|
| Voted for|
Michele (5 votes)
Cydney, Debbie, Jason, Julia, Scot
Aubry (2 votes)
Tai (0 votes)
| SECOND RUNNER-UP:|
| SOLE SURVIVOR:|
|“||(voting for Michele) I promised you I would, and I'm staying true to that.||”|
|“||(voting for Aubry) Nice job, Aubry. Way to go for the Brains.||”|
Life at Ponderosa
Cydney Gillon leaves the game in high spirits. She gets her post-game weigh-in, which reveals that she had lost 28 lbs. during her time in the game. She is warmly welcomed by half of the Ponderosa residents, but Kyle Jason, Julia Sokolowski, and Scot Pollard decide to give her the cold shoulder after they were betrayed by her during the game. Debbie Wanner comforts her, but Cydney acknowledges that the trio were immature and overly bitter about their elimination.
The next day, Cydney opens up about her life, and believes that she has broken stereotypes with her education. Cydney compares Jason and Scot's relationship to a pair of little girls in a clique of, as she states, stupidity. Despite the two claiming that they were not bitter, Cydney believes otherwise after witnessing their unfriendly attitude towards her. Cydney states that the Survivor experience was life-changing, and that she had gone through more than she had bargained for when signing up for the challenge. The main lesson that Cydney has learned is to be confident, independent, and open.
The episode ends with a montage of the eight Ponderosa residents.
- This episode covers the most number of days among Survivor season finales, covering a total of five days.
- No footage from Day 35 was actually shown in the episode.
- This is the first finale episode in which:
- In addition, this is the first episode in which there are multiple standalone Reward Challenges.
- This is the first Final Tribal Council since Tocantins to have exactly seven jury members.
- This is the third Final Tribal Council to have seven jury members and a Final Three, the first being in China and the second being in Gabon.
- The episode title was said by Aubry Bracco, referring to how Tai Trang was being shady and might not be on her side.
|Survivor: Kaôh Rōng Episodes|
"I'm a Mental Giant" · "Kindergarten Camp" · "The Circle of Life" · "Signed, Sealed and Delivered" · "The Devils We Know" · "Play or Go Home" · "It's Merge Time" · "The Jocks vs. the Pretty People" · "It's Psychological Warfare" · "I'm Not Here to Make Good Friends" · "It's a 'Me' Game, Not a 'We' Game" · "Now's the Time to Start Scheming" · "With Me or Not with Me" · "Not Going Down Without a Fight" · "Reunion"