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The Fan Favorite Award (later called Sprint Player of the Season for sponsorship purposes) is a special title earned by a contestant for being the most popular with the audience of their season. This contestant receives an extra prize that is separate from their talent fee from appearing on the show.

About

Before the finale, viewers vote for their favorite contestant of the season. At the Reunion Show, the winner is revealed, and he/she will receive an extra prize, apart from his/her Survivor winnings and appearance at the live show. The winner of the season is also eligible to win this award, which would increase his/her winnings further.

History

Survivor: America's Tribal Council

Please see, Survivor: America's Tribal Council.

The first fan favorite award was revealed during the Survivor: All-Stars reunion show, where the viewers voted for the most popular All-Star contestant. They also got the chance to vote for their favorite moments of the first eight seasons.

After a voting period which lasted for a week, a second reunion show was held, where Rupert Boneham was awarded the fan favorite award, earning himself $1,000,000, even though he technically did not win the actual competition. This format generated controversy among fans, calling it "unfair" for Boneham to merely win a popularity contest, while he failed to win the title of Sole Survivor in both of his seasons.[1]

Panama and Cook Islands

In Panama and Cook Islands, viewers could vote for their favorite castaway to win a car.

Sprint Player Of The Season

From Survivor: China to Survivor: Caramoan, viewers could vote for their favorite castaway to win an extra $100,000 sponsored by telecommunications company Sprint.

List of Fan Favorite Award Winners

Season Fan Favorite Closest
Opponent(s)
Prize
All-Stars
(via Survivor: America's Tribal Council)
S8 rupert t.png
Rupert Boneham
S8 tom t.pngS8 colby t.pngS8 robm t.png
Tom Buchanan, Colby Donaldson, Rob Mariano
$1,000,000
Panama S12 cirie t.png
Cirie Fields
Undisclosed GMC Yukon
Cook Islands Ozzy Lusth
Ozzy Lusth
S13 yul t.png
Yul Kwon
Mercury Mariner
China S15 james t.png
James Clement
S15 denise t.pngS15 peihgee t.png
Denise Martin, Peih-Gee Law
$100,000
Micronesia S16 james t.png
James Clement
S16 amanda t.pngS16 ozzy t.png
Amanda Kimmel, Ozzy Lusth
Gabon S17 bob t.png
Bob Crowley
S17 sugar t.pngS17 matty t.png
Sugar Kiper, Matty Whitmore
Tocantins S18 jt t.png
J.T. Thomas
S18 taj t.pngS18 sierra t.png
Taj Johnson-George, Sierra Reed
Samoa S19 russellh t.png
Russell Hantz
S19 shambo t.pngS19 brett t.png
Shambo Waters, Brett Clouser
Heroes vs. Villains S20 russell t.png
Russell Hantz
S20 rupert t.png
Rupert Boneham
Nicaragua S21 jane t.png
Jane Bright
Undisclosed
Redemption Island S22 rob t.png
Rob Mariano
S22 matt t.png
Matt Elrod
South Pacific S23 ozzy t.png
Ozzy Lusth
S23 cochran t.png
John Cochran
One World S24 kim t.png
Kim Spradlin
S24 troyzan t.pngS24 tarzan t.pngS24 chelsea t.png
Troyzan Robertson, Tarzan Smith, Chelsea Meissner
Philippines S25 lisa t.png
Lisa Whelchel
S25 malcolm t.png
Malcolm Freberg
Caramoan S26 malcolm t.png
Malcolm Freberg
S26 brenda t.png
Brenda Lowe

Trivia

  • From Heroes vs. Villains to Caramoan, all the men to win the Fan Favorite Award were returnees, whereas all the women to win the Fan Favorite Award were newbies.
  • Lisa Whelchel is the only new castaway in a season with returning players to win the Fan Favorite Award.
  • Malcolm Freberg is the lowest placing castaway to win the Fan Favorite Award, as he finished in 9th in the season where he won the award.
  • Ozzy Lusth, Russell Hantz, and James Clement are the only people to win the award twice.
    • Russell and James are the only castaways to be win the award in back-to-back seasons.
  • Bob Crowley is the oldest person to win the award. Jane Bright is the oldest woman to win the award. J.T. Thomas is the youngest person to win the award. Kim Spradlin is the youngest woman to win the award.
  • Bob, J.T., Kim, and Rob Mariano are the only players to win both the title of Sole Survivor and the Fan Favorite Award in the same season.

References

Survivor Gameplay
 
Challenges
Challenge Advantage · Do-It-Yourself Challenge · Duel · Family Visit · Immunity Challenge (Final Immunity Challenge) · Immunity Idol · Immunity Necklace · Medallion of Power · Reward Challenge · Survivor Auction
Elimination
Edge of Extinction · Ejection · Evacuation · Final Tribal Council · Jury · Quit · Redemption Island · Snuffer · Sole Survivor · Tiebreaker · Torch · Tribal Council · Urn
Strategy
Alliance · Pagonging · Split Vote (Strategy)
Social Dynamics
Final Two · Final Three · Merge · Tribe
Twists
Casting

Battle of the Sexes · Blood vs. Water · Brawn vs. Brains vs. Beauty · Old vs. Young · Returning Players · Schoolyard Pick · Tribes Divided by Ethnicity


Tribal Council-Related

Double Elimination · Double Tribal Council · Extra Vote · Hidden Immunity Idol (History) · Idol Nullifier · Joint Tribal Council · Juror Removal · Shot in the Dark · Vote Blocker · Vote Steal


Miscellaneous

Advantage Menu · Buried Treasure · Day Zero · Exile Island · Fake Merge · Fire Token · First Impressions · Ghost Island · Haves vs. Have Nots · Island of the Idols · Kidnapping · Legacy Advantage · Looting · Mutiny · One World · Reward Steal · The Outcasts · Tribe Leader · Tribe Switch

Post-Game
Fan Favorite Award · Lawsuits and Legal Action · Ponderosa · Reunion Show
Miscellaneous
Buff · Confessional · Luxury Item · Rites of Passage · Survivor Rulebook · Ulonging
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