‘Survivor: Kaoh Rong’ Finale Recap: Who Won the Million Dollars?

That’s hot! During Survivor: Kaoh Rong — Brains vs. Brawn vs. Beauty II's season finale on Wednesday, May 18, viewers were reminded that this season has been the toughest ever, thanks to the high temps that caused heat stroke and a record number of medical evacuations. Still standing were Michele Fitzgerald, Aubry Bracco, Cydney Gillon and Tai Trang, who all demonstrated major determination and skill to get to the final four. Who won the million dollars? Read on to find out!

Tai Trang, Cydney Gillon, Michele Fitzgerald and Aubry Bracco during the finale episode of SURVIVOR
Tai Trang, Cydney Gillon, Michele Fitzgerald and Aubry Bracco during the finale episode of SURVIVOR CBS Entertainment

Reward Challenge Winner: Aubry

As a live studio audience in the U.S. watched the pre-taped portion from Cambodia, the final four contestants battled it out to become Sole Survivor! 

On Day 36, the four awoke to the crowing of Mark, Tai’s pet chicken. As they started their day, they splintered into conversations, clearly strategizing. Tai told Aubry, who had been brought in on the Brains team, to get close to Cydney. Cydney, on the other hand, wanted Michele to go with her to the end, along with Aubry.

With no definitive alliances formed, they headed to the reward challenge, which was a relay race involving matching pairs of tiles to find the combination to open a box. The winner would get a meal of steak, vegetables, refreshing drinks and a protein bar. If you were in Cambodia completing exhausting challenges, wouldn’t you love a steak? We would!

Although Aubry mixed up her tiles, she won her first individual win in the end. She got the chance to pick someone else to eat with her and risk alienating two others, along with refueling someone who could be competition. She still chose Cydney, in the hopes of beating Michele at the next immunity challenge.

Naturally, Michele was angry and tried to form an alliance with Tai.

Immunity Challenge Winner: Michele

After Aubry and Cyd’s big feast, the immunity challenge was up next. It involved running back and forth from platforms in the ocean to obstacles on land that could only be unlocked with keys from the platforms. Ultimately, Michele won.

Everyone had been planning to vote Michele out, so with her immunity, Aubry tried to befriend Tai, though she was worried he would turn on her. He spoke to Michele and Cyd and told them he would vote against Aubry, so maybe she was right!

Tribal Council Elimination: Cydney

In the end, Tai did not betray Aubry, and Cydney went home, making Michele very nervous because of Aubry’s strong relationships with the jury members.

Second Immunity Challenge Winner: No One!

They went into the next immunity challenge … but host Jeff Probst told them there was no immunity that day. As the final three, they would all get to plead their case to the jury. They would vote someone out that night, but they’d be voting out a jury member, not a tribe member!

To win the chance to make that decision, they each had to balance on an unstable beam while using a pole to stack blocks on top of one another. Michele won the challenge, earning the chance to vote out a jury member. The Jersey girl looked more than a little smug as she accepted the congratulations from Jeff.

Of course, she wanted to vote for Joe Del Campo, knowing that his loyalty to Aubry was still quite strong.

Tribal Council Loser: Neal

“She has a loaded gun,” Aubry told the camera of Michele. "I just hope she doesn’t have very good aim."

Joe, Cydney, Neal Gottlieb, Nick Maiorano, Debbie Wanner, Scot Pollard, Julia Sokolowski and Kyle Jason walked into the tribal council meeting. They all took notice right away of the fact that no one was wearing the immunity necklace, and so the jury members whispered among themselves.

Michele excused Neal.

“You came to this game thinking you were a badass bitch, but you’re more like a cute little puppy suckling at the teat. I don’t think you stand a chance,” he hissed as he passed her on the way out. Clearly, she’d made the right choice, if you ask Us; he would never have voted for her to win!

Then came another twist! It was a mirror and a scale hidden away in the woods. When they saw themselves, they became emotional, taking note of how dramatically they had changed in 39 days. Then they found food that had been set out for them. There were eggs, slices of bread and a variety of fruits and vegetables!

Overall Winner and Sole Survivor Is …

Next it was time for the jury to ask questions of the final three and give a few statements. Michele was instructed to show intelligence, Tai was told to display awareness, and Aubry was commanded to show confidence. The biggest moments — like Tai’s betrayal of Scot Pollard — were reviewed.

Naturally, Tai was still holding his beloved chicken. In one of the most touching moments, he (Tai, not the chicken!) told Jason that he turned on Scot because he was jealous of how the two of them had “man talk” that he couldn’t participate in because he just didn’t understand their “savage” behavior and conversation.

When it was Cydney’s turn to ask questions, Michele told her she wished that she was there in the final three with her.

Joe voted for Aubry, Julia voted for Michele, and no one but Jason seemed all that conflicted.

Before Jeff walked out with the votes, he gave Tai the opportunity to say goodbye to Mark. Then he told everyone he would see them again back in America, walked offscreen, and reappeared a moment later at the live award ceremony at CBS Studios!

Vote one went to Michele. Vote two went to Aubry. Vote three went to Aubry. Vote four went to Michele. Vote five went to Michele. So did vote six. Michele was the winner.

A beauty won the Brains vs. Brawn vs. Beauty season!

Tell Us: Did the jury make the right choice this time?

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