Tonight on CBS Survivor airs with an all-new Wednesday, May 13, 2020, Season 40 Episode 14 Finale and we have your Survivor recap below. On tonight’s Survivor season, 40 episodes 14 called “It All Boils Down To This” as per the CBS synopsis, “Winners battle it out, but only one is crowned Sole Survivor and takes home the $2 million prize; castaways dig deep for a shot to get back in the game.”
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This was the biggest season ever done by Survivor, 20 winners, 2 million-dollar prize, the introduction of fire tokens, the return of the Edge of Extinction, and gameplay that as truly taken Survivor to the next level. This is a pact finale, it is epic, dramatic, emotional, and unpredictable. It is so packed, there is no time for a reunion show.
We have our final five; Sarah, Ben, Tony, Michelle, and Denise. Then we have the Edge of Extinction, where everyone except for Sandra will fight for a chance to play with the final five.
The final five get to watch today, they don’t have to compete. Returning from Edge of Extinction are all the players who were on the island waiting for their chance to get back in the game. For today’s challenge, they will be tied to a rope, on Jeff’s go they will race through a fence obstacle, then a post obstacle. They will then dig up some rope and use it to build a rope bridge. They will then race to the end where they will then maneuver two balls into their places on a puzzle board.
Natalie, Parvati, Yul, and Wendell bought the first advantage and will skip the first obstacle. Natalie bought the second advantage which allows her to skip the dig, she also bought the third advantage which means her rope bridge is already a third made for her. Big advantages for Natalie, let’s see what she does with them. Three advantages and Natalie have trouble getting off the first part. Wendell has time to catch up, and he is right on pace with Natalie. Yul is third, and Parvati fourth. The four of them are building their bridge.
Rob is in it now too. Natalie has another set-back on the rope bridge, Wendell is at the balls. It is Wendell’s challenge eight now, can anyone catch up with him. Wendell has the first ball through. Natalie ties up with Wendell. Rob drops and has to start again. Tyson has his first ball. Wendell drops, she does it. After 33 days and being the first voted out of this game, Natalie is back in the game.
Edge of Extinction is over, but the game is not over the 13, because they are the jury at Tribal Council.
Because there is no reunion show, they sent audio recorders to each of the 20 players and asked them to say in their own words what the Survivor experience meant to them. Adam: “Being able to step inside the television with my childhood hero means for my life that anything is possible. It completely changed my life and now I believe I can do anything I set my mind to.” Tony; “I’m the type of person that I don’t even leave my city, so playing the game is the most amazing experience that I will ever have.”
Kim: “It is such a hard physical and emotional experience. You have to know who you are to play Survivor, and if you don’t know who you are, you are about to find out.” Michele: “You transform out there on the beach and it changed me for the better, I found my own identity.” Parvati: “It has certainly instilled this unquenchable thirst for adventure in my life.” Wendell: “If you don’t have confidence, actually going out on that island and proving it to yourself, is a blessing.” Sophie: “It taught me to embrace the parts of me that succeed but also the parts of me that can fail things, and I’m ok with that.” Natalie: “When I have hard times in real life, I always go back to that Survivor experience, and when it seemed like it was impossible.”
Nick: “Survivor kicks me in the butt until I get to that place where I was finally grown up.” Denise: “It taught me so much about life and what I am capable of.” Yul: “When I was a kid I was an incredibly introverted person, but winning Survivor validated the person I have grown in to, and that is priceless.” Sarah: “Winning a million dollars, especially in the mid-west has really changed my life and I am so fortunate to have that opportunity.”
Sandra: “I wouldn’t have what I have today if it wasn’t for Survivor. It is the greatest thing that I have ever done.” Ethan: “At its core, it is about relationships, and that is human to human, even if we are playing this game.” Ben: “I grew immensely as a human being, I learned it’s ok and forgiveness.” Danni: “Survivor really took me back to the basics when it came to realizing what’s really important in life.”
Rob: “When I started playing I was just a kid, and now I just celebrated my 15-year wedding anniversary.” Amber: “Survivor has given me everything I value in my life, way more than a million dollars for sure.” Tyson: “With the million dollars comes freedom, I spend a lot of time with my family, my children, and that is the biggest blessing.” Jeremy: “The biggest life lesson that I have taken from this is to enjoy the people that you love, I have a deeper bond with my family, Survivor has given me that. You don’t even have to win the million dollars, it still changes your life, it changes everyone’s life.”
Back at Koru, Natalie is welcomed back in the game. She bet everything on herself, and it paid off. Tony tells Natalie that she has so much to tell them. Natalie says everyone was saying that Tony was running the game. Tony hopes that nobody believes her, because those words are poison.
Tony tells Sarah that Natalie is strong, mentally, and physically, they need to get rid of her. A nerve has been struck in Sarah, Natalie’s words are making her think.
Time for the immunity challenge. Today they are going to race through an obstacle course, collect a bag and head up a tower. Once at the top, drop the bag and head down a giant water slide. Do it again. Once they have all three bags, they will have everything they need to complete a three-tier puzzle. First to finish, safe from the vote and guaranteed to see day 37. Losers will be going to Tribal Council and someone will become the 14th member of their jury.
Ben is on fire, Tony is right behind him. Natalie and Sarah are side by side, third and fourth. Ben continues to dominate. Michelle is trying to stay in it, but she just got her first bag. Everyone but Michelle is working on the puzzle. Ironically, Michelle has done this puzzle before and won. Michelle joins the rest, it would be a massive comeback if she won. Natalie keeps looking over at Michelle to see what she is doing. Michelle is now starting to work on her third and final tier. Literally, everyone is looking at Michelle to see what she is doing. Michelle wins individual immunity.
Back at camp, Tony asks Ben what’re they going to do now. Ben tells him that they are going to vote out Natalie. He knows that Tony has an idol, and he just needs to play it cool. Natalie asks if anyone wants to talk, Michelle says she would like to talk; they both walk away. Michelle tells Natalie that she is with nobody. Natalie tells her that she has an idol. Michelle is so excited, she feels like she has the idol situation. Natalie is so thankful that she brought that idol in the game with her, otherwise, she would be going home.
Michelle gives Tony and Ben a story, she is not in an alliance with Natalie. Tony can’t believe that they won’t though the votes on Denise. He is almost positive that Natalie has an idol. Sarah tries to calm down Tony, she feels that she has a good enough bond with Natalie that she would have told her that she had an idol.
Time for Tribal Council, it’s nice to see all the jury cleaned up. Jeff asks Ben if Natalie is the elephant in the room, he says yes. Michelle says the reality of the situation is that Natalie has brought a lot of information in. Ben says there is no fact-checking, they all have to take Natalie at her word. Sarah says Natalie coming back was a blessing, she got information that helped her to play her game. Natalie tells Jeff that she told everyone that Tony was running the show.
Sarah says that there is a gender bias in the game. If a guy lies and plays dirty he is praised, if a woman does she is called a bitch. She said that in Game Changers she was made to feel like she was a bad person, and she can finally let that go, she knows who she is. And, will not be defeated by gender bias. Ben says he knows that women can do anything that men can do, and he is happy that strong women like Sarah can bring it to light. Back to the game, Natalie says that Michelle is on the bottom, and she is on rock bottom. Tony says that is not a crack, Natalie is creating a crack. Natalie says again, she told the women don’t shoot the messenger, they are giving Tony 2 million dollars. Time to vote.
Jeff tells everyone that if they have a hidden immunity idol, it is time to play it. Natalie plays her idol for herself because she wants to be here tomorrow and there is no sense saving it. Tony then tells Jeff that he is playing one too. Both idols are real. Any votes for Natalie or Tony will not count. Ben reaches down into his boot, he takes out an immunity idol, any votes cast for Ben will not count.
Time to read the votes; Natalie, Natalie, Natalie, Natalie, Ben, Ben. No votes cast for any other player. They are going to vote again and they can vote for either Denise or Sarah to leave. If there is a tie, they will settle it with a fire-making showdown, those are the stakes. Denise and Sarah hug. Time to read the votes; Denise, Denise, Denise. Denise joins the jury and three idols were flushed out. Another crazy tribal in what has been an unpredictable season.
Back at camp, Tony tells Ben that he has the utmost respect for him and Sarah and we ask if they are 100% then he will back down, but they never do with him. Nobody wanted to listen to him about Denise and now she is gone home, and he has no more idol and neither does Ben. Tony leaves to go and do one of his midnight specials, to look for an idol. Tony is searching hi and low, and he is coming up short. Now the sun is coming out and everyone is out looking for that idol. Natalie found it, she tells Michelle. It shows dedication and relentlessness on Natalie’s part and she is going to use it, to break up Tony, Ben, and Sarah.
Time for the immunity challenge, they are going to race through a series of obstacles and collect a key along the way. The key will unlock two sandbags, first player to land both their sandbags on their target, wins immunity, and guaranteed a spot in the final four. Huge stakes today.
Ben and Tony have their first sandbag on the target, then Tony gets his second one, he has won immunity.
Sarah goes to speak to girls to see if they have found an idol, Tony is up in a tree and listens in. Natalie does show her idol to Sarah, what a nut. Knowing that Natalie has the idol, the vote now is going to go against Michelle. Ben gives Sarah permission to vote him out; he tells her that he would rather have her as a friend than win the game. Sarah has to make a hard decision, and this one without Tony, she doesn’t know what she is going to do.
Time for Tribal Council. Jeff asks the final players, is it possible that Survivor serves the purpose of a well-intentioned but relentless adversary that pushes you to deal with stuff. Sarah says it brings out the best in you and the worst in you. She goes on to say it is time to evaluate, how do you make it through tonight, and where do you go tomorrow, because everyone will be on their own after this vote out. Michelle says that she has a hard time for a week now trying to survive with this alliance with Ben, Tony, and Sarah. Time to vote. Natalie plays her immunity idol for herself, any votes cast for her will not count; Ben, Michelle, Ben, Michelle, Ben. Tony is shocked! Ben tells the jury he hoping they are all ready to party.
Time for the final immunity challenge, for the last time, immunity is back up for grabs. Today they will have one hand tied behind their backs, on Jeff’s go they will drop a ball down a chute, it will spiral to the bottom, catch it and put it back in. At regular intervals they will add more balls, making it more difficult. If at any point the ball drops, they are out. The last person left standing wins immunity and is guaranteed a spot in the final Tribal Council where they will get a chance, to plead their case to the jury as to why they deserve the title of sole survivor and the winner of two million dollars.
In addition, they control the fate of the other three, who do they bring with them, and who do they force to make fire. The biggest challenge of the season is here. Jeff says they have played this game three times now for the final immunity challenge and each time, the person that won this challenge, won the game. Tony is the first one to drop a ball and be out. Sarah is out. It is down to Natalie and Michelle. They place their fifth ball, the most that have ever played in this game. The balls are coming fast, one mistake and it is all over. Natalie has two almost near misses. Michelle drops, Natalie has won individual immunity; she has dragged herself back from being voted out on day two.
Back at camp, Tony thinks that Natalie is going to make him and Sarah fight with fire to be in the game. Natalie knows that Tony is the biggest threat in the game. But if he puts Sarah against him and she wins, she will use that to win the game. Tony is not doing well-making fire and Sarah thinks he is in the wrong headspace to do it.
Time for Tribal Council, Sophie is not there, she is not feeling well.
Jeff asked Jeff how Natalie feels. She says that it feels like a dream, the only thing that kept her going at Extinction was believing she could get back in the game. Michelle says if she has to make fire, she would rather make it against Tony because she thinks he is going to win this game. Natalie has to make her decision. She decides to take Michelle with her because she wants to see the end of this alliance.
It will be the last show-down and she hopes that Sarah will be sitting with her in the end. Sarah has a good fire going, then it diminishes. Tony is building a big structure and now it is Tony in the lead. This is one of the best fire-making challenges they have ever had. Both fires are burning through the rope, it is a showdown. Tony defeats Sarah, takes the third and final spot. Sarah tells Jeff that Tony is more than deserving to be in the final three, he can still finish what he set out to accomplish, she knows he is going to do it and she is fine.
Back at camp, the final three are told to follow the trail behind their camp to enjoy their well-deserved day 39 breakfast. Natalie makes a toast, to the best man or woman to win. Tony says that Sandra is the queen of Survivor and now he wants to take home the win, so he can be the king of Survivor.
It the final Tribal Council, and there are torrential rains. Time for the outwit portion of the game. Yul offers the final three huge kudos, they all took a different path. Denise asks which miss-steps Natalie made in her social game. She says in day one, she didn’t go to people and say hey I want to get to know you, and it ended up getting her voted off. Tony says the first season he wasn’t open to everyone, but this season he opened to everyone, and that is how he proceeded in the game.
Tony tries to respond as well, Natalie jumps in and says he is false. Ben says he can attest to Tony’s loyalty, Nick and Jeremy say they can’t. Adam says Natalie crushed this game. Rob asks Natalie why she isolated so many people the last week at Extinction. She says there are two things she found before she left that week, two advantages and she didn’t know if she wanted to tell people. And whatever she did, it worked for her.
Parvati tells Natalie that the one thing she likes about Natalie is that she is unapologetically truthful with everyone. Parvati asks Tony how he lasted to the end. He says he built a spy nest, he would climb up there and listen to people talk about him. Michelle says that she always re-integrated and moved within the cracks, she played a real adaptable game. It was her alone when everyone said she was the next to go.
Natalie says the social part is one of her weaker part of the game, her strong parts are all the advantages that she won, found or earned. Rob asks Natalie, why she took Michelle with her to the end. She says she wanted to finish off that alliance, and she is at peace with her decision. Natalie says that she played a perfect game to get voted out first and to now be sitting within the final three.
Michelle says she played the best game for the person that she is, she is not a beast in challenges and she can’t build spy shacks. Tony says he came in as a human being, he played Survivor twice, during the day and night. The spy nest was very helpful, he worked hard the whole season, nobody put his name down this season. Amber says they all have respect for each one of the final three for being where they are.
Jeff says it is time to vote.
The final three are at home and seen live. Jeff has the votes and tells them to bring their family into the screen. Two of them are going to lose. One of them is going to earn 2 million dollars. Jeff is reading the votes from his garage; Tony, Natalie, Natalie, Tony, Natalie, Tony, Natalie, Tony, Tony, Tony, Tony, Tony, Tony.
The winner of Survivor Winners At War is TONY.