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Survivor: China is the fifteenth season of Survivor. Originally airing in fall 2007, it was the first American television show to ever be filmed or produced in the People's Republic of China.

This season returned to Survivor's standard format of 16 contestants on two competing tribes, Fei Long and Zhan Hu, each with their own colorful personalities and internal conflicts. On Day 19, the tribes merged into Hae Da Fung, which was controlled by the dominant alliance birthed on Fei Long. In the end, the Final Three faced a jury of seven. For his vice grip on the game and for delivering one of the series' best Final Tribal Council performances, Todd Herzog was crowned Sole Survivor in a 4-2-1 vote against Courtney Yates and Amanda Kimmel. Since airing, it has produced four returning players (Amanda Kimmel, Courtney Yates, James Clement, and Peih-Gee Law) for subsequent seasons.


Producers were given an "unprecedented access" to several Chinese monuments and landmarks, and they incorporated many aspects of China's vast culture into the game (design of campsites, challenge concepts, Tribal Council set, etc.). Before they made it to their camps, the contestants took part in a non-religious Buddhist ceremony. After the ceremony, both tribes received a copy of Sun Tzu's The Art of War which would help them in winning challenges and conquering the other tribe.

The season was said to be the first U.S. show to be entirely shot in China.

For this season's rendition of Ancient Voices, Russ Landau commissioned an all-female Chinese choir in Beijing to translate the Russian folk song Poidu Vyidu na Ulitsu ("I'll go and get outside"; the reference material of Ancient Voices) into Mandarin and added a Chinese folk song to the edit.[2]


  • Hidden Immunity Idol: During this season, the tribe's idols were hidden in plain sight as one of the two plaques on the pagota gate outside each tribe's camps.
  • Kidnapping: The kidnapping twist from Survivor: Pearl Islands and Survivor: All-Stars returned. However, unlike the two former seasons, the kidnapped player was not granted immunity. Starting with the episode "My Mom Is Going to Kill Me!", whichever tribe won the Reward Challenge would kidnap a member from the losing tribe to stay at their camp until the next Immunity Challenge. The kidnapped player would give a tube containing clues to the Hidden Immunity Idol to a tribe member from the opposing side for an idol at their camp.
  • Tribe Switch: On Day 13, both tribes were told to select two members of the opposing tribe to join their tribe.
  • Final Three: For the third consecutive season, three castaways would face the jury instead of the usual two.
    • New Jury/Finals Configuration: This is the first Final Three season to use the traditional seven-member jury instead of the nine-member jury used during Survivor: Cook Islands and Survivor: Fiji.


Contestant Tribe Affiliation Finish Votes
Original Tribe Switched Tribe Merged Tribe
S15 chicken t Chicken Morris
47, Marion, VA
Chicken Farmer
Zhan Hu 1st Voted Out
Day 3
S15 ashley t Ashley Massaro
28, East Northport, NY
Professional Wrestler
Zhan Hu 2nd Voted Out
Day 6
S15 leslie t Leslie Nease
38, Tega Cay, SC
Christian Radio Host
Fei Long 3rd Voted Out
Day 9
S15 dave t Dave Cruser
37, Simi Valley, CA
Former Model
Zhan Hu 4th Voted Out
Day 12
S15 aaron t Aaron Reisberger
32, Venice, CA
Surfing Instructor
Fei Long Zhan Hu 5th Voted Out
Day 15
S15 sherea t Sherea Lloyd
25, Atlanta, GA
Elementary Teacher
Zhan Hu Fei Long 6th Voted Out
Day 18
S15 jaime t Jaime Dugan
21, Columbia, SC
Zhan Hu Zhan Hu Hae Da Fung 7th Voted Out
1st Jury Member
Day 21
S15 jeanrobert t Jean-Robert Bellande
36, Las Vegas, NV
Professional Poker Player
Fei Long Fei Long 8th Voted Out
2nd Jury Member
Day 24
S15 frosti t Frosti Zernow
20, Chicago, IL
Zhan Hu Fei Long 9th Voted Out
3rd Jury Member
Day 27
S15 james t James Clement
30, Lafayette, LA
Fei Long Zhan Hu 10th Voted Out
4th Jury Member
Day 30
S15 erik t Erik Huffman
26, Nashville, TN
Zhan Hu Zhan Hu 11th Voted Out
5th Jury Member
Day 33
S15 peihgee t Peih-Gee Law
29, Marina del Rey, CA
Zhan Hu Zhan Hu 12th Voted Out
6th Jury Member
Day 36
S15 denise t Denise Martin
40, Douglas, MA
School Lunch Lady
Fei Long Fei Long 13th Voted Out
7th Jury Member
Day 38
S15 amanda t Amanda Kimmel
22, Los Angeles, CA
Hiking Guide
Fei Long Fei Long Second
S15 courtney t Courtney Yates
26, New York City, NY
Fei Long Fei Long Runner-Up 0
S15 todd t Todd Herzog
22, Pleasant Grove, UT
Flight Attendant
Fei Long Fei Long Sole Survivor 5

Season Summary[]

The two tribes, Fei Long and Zhan Hu, were predetermined prior to the start of the game. Exile Island was abandoned for this season and instead, an added bonus for winning Reward Challenges was that the winning tribe was given the opportunity to kidnap a member from the losing tribe, where they would live at the winning tribe's camp until the next Immunity Challenge. This person would receive a container with a clue to the Hidden Immunity Idol that they had to give to one of the winning tribe members.

Fei Long held a slight edge thanks to the strength of James and leadership of Aaron. A strong alliance formed on Fei Long between Aaron, Todd, Amanda, and Courtney. On Day 14, each tribe, separately, selected two members of the other tribe to bring into theirs; Fei Long selected Sherea and Frosti, while Zhan Hu selected James and Aaron. Believing that James and Aaron would remain true to the other Fei Long members when the merge occurred, Jaime and Peih-Gee formed a plan to lose the next Immunity Challenge on purpose so that they would be able to remove the former Fei Longs from the game. Zhan Hu would end up losing the challenge, and subsequently removed Aaron from the game.

Todd had been working to find the Hidden Immunity Idol. At the next Reward Challenge on Day 16, Fei Long won, and selected to kidnap James. With the clue from James, Todd deduced the idol's location: one of two plaques on the standing pagoda gate near camp, and recovered it. He then gave this idol to James, and instructed him that the same clues would apply at the Zhan Hu camp, so that James would be able to possess both idols. Todd's plan required Fei Long to win the next Immunity Challenge, which would force Zhan Hu to Tribal Council; while the other members would target James, he would have been able to use one of the idols to deflect the vote and remove a Zhan Hu member. However, Fei Long lost the challenge, and instead.

The tribes merged on Day 19, with the former Fei Longs holding a 6–4 advantage. Amanda became concerned that James would not give back one of the two idols, and worked with her other tribe members to blindside him, with James leaving the game with the two idols still in his possession. The remaining Fei Long held on to their lead, comprising the final four. Todd, Amanda, and Courtney's alliance held strong and the three went to the end of the game.

At the Final Tribal Council, Amanda was lambasted for over-apologizing and not giving reasons to the jury as to why she chose to vote them out, nor even admitting to ever lying to them, Courtney was criticized for her personality, while Todd was accused for being manipulative and deceitful. Ultimately Todd defeated Courtney and Amanda in a 4-2-1 vote to become the Sole Survivor.

Episode Air date Challenges Kidnapped Eliminated
Finish Viewers
(in millions)[3]
Reward Immunity
1 "A Chicken's a Little Bit Smarter" September 20, 2007 Fei Long None Chicken
1st Voted Out
Day 3
15.35 5.0/N/A
2 "My Mom Is Going to Kill Me!" September 27, 2007 Fei Long Fei Long Jaime Ashley
2nd Voted Out
Day 6
14.15 4.6/N/A
3 "I Lost Two Hands and Possibly a Shoulder" October 4, 2007 Zhan Hu Zhan Hu Leslie Leslie
3rd Voted Out
Day 9
14.14 4.5/N/A
4 "Ride the Workhorse Till the Tail Falls Off" October 11, 2007 Fei Long Fei Long Dave Dave
4th Voted Out
Day 12
14.22 4.6/N/A
5 "Love Is in the Air" October 18, 2007 None Fei Long None Aaron
5th Voted Out
Day 15
14.03 4.6/N/A
6 "That's Love, Baby! It Makes You Strong!" October 25, 2007 Fei Long Zhan Hu James Sherea
6th Voted Out
Day 18
14.19 4.5/N/A
7 "I'm Not as Dumb as I Look" November 1, 2007 None Frosti Jaime
7th Voted Out
1st Jury Member
Day 21
14.44 4.9/N/A
8 "High School Friend Contest" November 8, 2007 Amanda,
Courtney Jean-Robert
8th Voted Out
2nd Jury Member
Day 24
14.86 4.8/N/A
9 "Just Don't Eat the Apple" November 15, 2007 Amanda,
Erik, Frosti
Peih-Gee Frosti
9th Voted Out
3rd Jury Member
Day 27
14.68 4.8/N/A
10 "It's Been Real and It's Been Fun" November 22, 2007 Recap Episode N/A N/A
11 "Ready to Bite the Apple" November 29, 2007 Peih-Gee
Erik James
10th Voted Out
4th Jury Member
Day 30
13.57 4.5/N/A
12 "Going for the Oscar" December 6, 2007 Denise
Peih-Gee Erik
11th Voted Out
5th Jury Member
Day 33
13.86 4.5/N/A
13 "Hello, I'm Still a Person" December 13, 2007 Denise
Amanda Peih-Gee
12th Voted Out
6th Jury Member
Day 36
14.49 4.6/N/A
14 "A Slippery Little Sucker" December 16, 2007 Amanda
Amanda Denise
13th Voted Out
7th Jury Member
Day 38
15.18 5.2/N/A
Jury Vote Amanda
Second Runner-Up
Sole Survivor
15 "Reunion" 12.26 4.5/N/A
^1 Combined Reward and Immunity Challenge.

Voting History[]

Original Tribes Switched Tribes Merged Tribe
Episode 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 11 12 13 14
Voted Out S15 chicken t
S15 ashley t
S15 leslie t
S15 dave t
S15 aaron t
S15 sherea t
S15 jaime t
S15 jeanrobert t
S15 frosti t
S15 james t
S15 erik t
S15 peihgee t
S15 denise t
S15 amanda t
S15 courtney t
S15 todd t
Vote 5-2-1 6-1 6-2 5-1 3-1-1 5-2 7-3 5-3-1 7-1 5-1-1 4-2 4-1 3-1 4-2-1
Todd Leslie Sherea Jaime Jean-Robert Frosti James Erik Peih-Gee Denise Jury Vote
Courtney Jean-Robert Jean-Robert Jaime Jean-Robert Frosti James Erik Peih-Gee Denise
Amanda Leslie Sherea Jaime Jean-Robert Frosti James Erik Peih-Gee Denise
Denise Leslie Sherea Jaime Peih-Gee Frosti James Erik Peih-Gee Todd Courtney
Peih-Gee Chicken Ashley Dave Aaron Jean-Robert James Frosti Todd Todd Todd Todd
Erik Chicken Ashley Dave Aaron Jean-Robert James Frosti James Todd Amanda
James Leslie Peih-Gee Jaime Jean-Robert Frosti Peih-Gee Courtney
Frosti Chicken Ashley Dave Sherea Jaime Jean-Robert Erik Todd
Jean-Robert Leslie Sherea Jaime James Todd
Jaime Chicken Ashley Dave Aaron Jean-Robert Todd
Sherea Chicken Ashley Dave Jean-Robert
Aaron Leslie James
Dave Ashley Ashley Sherea
Leslie Jean-Robert
Ashley Peih-Gee Dave
Chicken Ashley


  • With an age average of 29.938 years among its castaways, the cast of China has the second youngest age average of all seasons (Ghost Island is the youngest with an average age of 27.9).
  • China is the first season to use a variation on the "Outwit, Outplay, Outlast" slogan. The Chinese words used in their place—"比智慧" (bĭ zhìhuì), "比技巧" (bĭ jìqiǎo), and "比耐力" (bĭ nàilì)—approximately translate to "compete in intelligence" , compete in skill, compete in endurance" respectively.
  • China is the first season not to include Exile Island since its introduction.
  • Both China and Philippines had Hidden Immunity Idols "hidden in plain sight", with China's being a plaque-shaped ornament.
  • China had the first instance of a contestant (Jaime Dugan) trying to play an item at Tribal Council believed to be a Hidden Immunity Idol, but turning out not to be.
  • China is the first season in which only castaways who switched tribes were eliminated after a tribe switch.
  • China is the only 16-castaway season to have a Final Three face the jury.
  • China has the overall youngest Final Three of the time of recording.
  • China is the first season with a Final Three in which all three finalists received jury votes.
  • China holds the record for fewest contestants voted out in a season without any evacuations, quits, or eliminations, with 13.
  • Once this season reached the jury phase, the opening introductory montage no longer showed all the contestants in the game. The montage showed the players in "the jury" first, followed by the ones in the "Merged Tribe." Prior to this, all seasons had shown all the players in the intro in all episodes.
  • CBS gave this season's Immunity Idol to actor Neil Patrick Harris, an avid reality TV fan, for his 37th birthday.[4]


Survivor (U.S.) Seasons
BorneoThe Australian OutbackAfricaMarquesasThailandThe AmazonPearl IslandsAll-StarsVanuatuPalauGuatemalaPanamaCook IslandsFijiChinaMicronesiaGabonTocantinsSamoaHeroes vs. VillainsNicaraguaRedemption IslandSouth PacificOne WorldPhilippinesCaramoanBlood vs. WaterCagayanSan Juan del SurWorlds ApartCambodiaKaôh RōngMillennials vs. Gen XGame ChangersHeroes vs. Healers vs. HustlersGhost IslandDavid vs. GoliathEdge of ExtinctionIsland of the IdolsWinners at WarSurvivor 41Survivor 42Survivor 43Survivor 44Survivor 45Survivor 46Survivor 47