Boston Rob (finally) wins Survivor

It took him four seasons and 117 days to do it, but Survivor favourite “Boston” Rob Mariano finally won the $1m prize money.

He defeated finalists Phillip and Natalie to take out the prize that had eluded him so many times before.

Mariano won the show over a week ago, but it aired in Australia on GO! last night.

“I used what I brought to the game from my past experiences, was able to get my foot in the door, and the people were responsive to that,” he said.

He also won the audience-voted $100,000 prize as the most popular contestant on the show over Redemption-Island regular, Matt. His wife, Amber, also won $1 million on the show, in 2004. They now have two daughters.

Eliminated contestant Russell Hantz told Jeff Probst that after three seasons he was done with the show, but then appeared to retreat from the threat when Probst asked if Producers should throw away his number.

Mariano, who has also competed on The Amazing Race, says he plans to begin a project with the History Channel.

The next Survivor season takes place in the South Pacific.

Source: CBS


  1. I was so glad to see Boston Rob finally win. After the finale aired I made sure I didn’t come on this site for a few days as I knew the winner would have been published on the homepage. I only just watched the episode tonight, which is crazy for me as Survivor has probably been the show I’ve enjoyed the most consistently forever.

    Now I’ve just got to keep reading all the news articles that were published after the finale, and watch the cbs morning show on youtube tomorrow which is part of my ritual after a survivor finale :)

    Any word on whether go/nine will have South Pacific in two weeks David?

  2. @ Tara – Survivor Micronesia: Fans vs Favourites had a core alliance of Parvati, Amanda and Cirie plus fan Natalie, blindsiding Ozzy, then Jason, then Erik after convincing him to hand over his immunity idol, leaving an all female final 4.

    @ Lewis – Have to agree with all three points.

  3. @ Shelley, do you avoid websites like Facebook & Twitter as well when you watch shows after they’ve aired? I don’t think you can blame David Knox, the writer of a TV blog to not report this news when it’s been all around the internet for over a week now.

    I accidently got spoiled by simply logging onto facebook and I had a friend post about the result. You should be happy you lasted the week.

  4. Honestly can’t believe some of the comments here.

    First of all, if you got spoiled by this, your fault. Once the show has aired in Australia it’s up to you to avoid being spoiled. It’s not David’s job to hold off until he thinks maybe everyone who recorded it has seen it. If you don’t want to be spoiled, don’t go onto TV websites. Simple as that.

    Second, those who think this season wan’t any good. Wow. I thought it was great. We had Rob, handicapped from the beginning, manage not just to win, but play what you’d have to say was a close to perfect game. Really, there’s nothing he did wrong. He worked everyone over to the max, and came out of it with 8 votes out of 9. Perfect game.

    Third, someone said Russell’s a better player. What utter rubbish. Russell’s game plan is flawed. He will never win this game (hopefully he doesn’t get the chance, but I doubt that…). His game revolves around being strategic and lying/backstabbing/being mean. it won’t work.

  5. It’s frustrating to see season after season of clueless girls clinging to the guys to get to the end and the more strategic foreword thinking women getting voted off too early.has there ever been a successful all female alliance?? I can’t think of any of the top of my head.

    After all the zapoteras were voted off,the game did become really predictable.I kept hoping for someone to make a big move but that never happened.
    Interested to see who they’ll bring back for next season

  6. I’m not sure what the lastest PVR uptake and time shifted viewing stats are at, but I bet a reasonable proportion of people are watching back reality shows after original telecast….and are frustrated with the game always being given away on the home page of this website!!

    • Shelley the show has aired in Australia. I held off all info until then and I trust you well aware of this. TV Tonight is hardly the only TV site in the world to have reported the winner of Survivor. I find it disappointing I am singled out for these actions when I have been more than respectul to Australian fans, but I guess you can’t please everybody. Please note American Idol results will be published after the Finale airs tomorrow morning. Thanks. Sigh.

  7. While I’ll admit Rob played an OK game, his win was more of a testament to the stupidity of the other players, especially in his tribe. How could they believe he wouldn’t beat them if he made it to the end?
    There was no doubt that he was going to win with the final 3, the other two completely didn’t deserve it!
    The only reason I actually stayed watching after the merge was in the hope that someone decent would make it back from Redemption Island – Matts final revenge maybe? Matt fits into the realm of the other players stupidity though.
    I’m hoping the players in the next season will be smarter.

  8. Glad to see Boston Rob win, it was well deserved. I think part of his secret is that he even though he is calculating, deceitful and manipulating and strategic, we somehow still find him likeable despite all that. He is an extraordinarily charismatic person who makes people feel good about themselves and we always want to stay close to someone who makes us feel that way . In survivor he just took it that much further and exploited them.

    Just a word on Amber, anyone who watched the series that she won knows that it was really Rob who won it for her. She just coasted along on his coat tails and got a free ride to the end thanks to Rob, and because she had let him do all the dirty work not many people could find good reason to vote against her. But as far as l’m concerned this is Boston Rob’s second win.

  9. @ Nate,

    It was more then Kristina from Ometepe that was interested in getting rid of Rob. In the very first episode Francesca openly targetted Rob which sent her home, Kristina tried to out Rob, so she went home too.

    Phillip openly said he wanted to get rid of Rob in the beginning, but when he realised how strong Rob was he aligned with him and played the “villian” that Rob wanted to keep around to the final.

    What about Matt’s plan to get rid of Rob at the merge when he returned from Redemption Island?

    Or the plan that Ashley, Natalie & Andrea were considering in the finale but didn’t attempt because they suspected he knew the Idol?

    Rob played a brilliant game, you can’t deny that and he would’ve been able to hatch the same plan with Zapatera keeping Krista, Stephanie, Ralph, Steve & Sarita onside and getting rid of mental threats like Mike & David early.

  10. Hopefully he never comes back. You would hope someone who has played four times would be able to beat those sheep. I would love to see Coach back.

  11. Like JB I agree, the season showed great promise early but once Russell went it went downhill pretty swiftly as only 3 other contestants (Mike, Stephanie & David) had any grasp whatsoever of strategy.

    I think you’re overselling just how much Rob’s gameplay kept him around, even Probst, who has a bromance with Rob, said on his blog that if the bandana pick had been different that he thought Rob would’ve struggled, as Zapatera’s attitude was there wasn’t anything a returning player could teach them, whereas Omatepe saw things quite differently. Mike mentioned specifically when he lost at RI that he’d gotten to oust Russell Hantz, but was disappointed as he’d hoped to be able to oust Boston Rob as well, apart from Christina there was nobody on Omatepe that was trying to collect a scalp for themselves. So I’m not sure Rob can be given that much credit for adapting, when his tribe practically dietified him. What Rob did and did very well was turn an advantageous situation into a win, there isn’t any guarantee that Russell would’ve been able to do that.

  12. @ Geoff, I like your thinking. Personally i’d love to see Coach come back, he had me in fits of laughter with his stories and absolute love of himself. So Coach up against Tyson would be my pick with your selection.

  13. I agree with Jeff Probt’s comment during the reunion special that “Rob played the closest to a perfect game of Survivor that anybody has played”. He turned that intial target on his back into a leadership position which is something that Russell couldn’t do and despite playing 3 times before and a well known physical and especially mental threat in both challenges and around the camp, not Once did it look like Rob was in a possible opportunity to go home.

    Yes the series may’ve been predictable and didn’t have the twists, turns and blindsides of past seasons but Rob played the Best game of Survivor in 22 seasons.

    The big question for me now is– who’s next? Who’s the two returning competitors for Survivor: South Pacific?

    Coach Vs Tyson
    Amanda Vs Parvarti or James
    Jerri Vs Colby
    Yau Man Vs Dreamz

    It has to be two people that have history and want Redemption for something.

  14. Not open an can of worms @Paul, but I’d disagree and say that Rob was a better player in the end. Russell’s game never changed or adapted to his surroundings and tribemates. He played two games back to back and got so much further in Heroes V Villians because no one had seen him play before whereas everyone’s seasons had aired.

    I think Rob, showed this season especially, he could learn and adapt whereas Russell just went about being Russell and it got him kicked off pretty quick.

    This season just gone was all Rob and I’m so glad he won. Totally deserved it; the way he manipulated that tribe to follow his every direction and command and still have their votes in the end – gold!

  15. If anyone else had won this season, it would have been a total farce. It was decent season in the end, though not a great one, largely because Rob dominated so completely that nothing surprising ever happened. At least Rob himself is entertaining.

    I’m am glad though that Rob outlasted Russell, who is an overrated gamer. Russell is the best hustler Survivor has ever had, but very far from the best overall player.

    As for next season, I am concerned that it seems to be exactly the same in concept as this one…

  16. I don’t watch much survivor but if you know Rob is popular, why didn’t people get rid of him early on? The only strategy in this show is to win immunity or hidden idol. The rest is pot luck because you can’t trust anyone.

  17. Well i can finally talk about it a week later. This season started out as one of the best, but then quickly turned into a predictable and unexciting season. You knew from the merge that Rob would win. I like Rob, a favourite of mine, glad he won and well deserved. But no one made any moves at all. Got pretty boring.

  18. Disappointed that we never had another Boston Rob vs Russell battle (in the sense that the actions of one, eliminated the other…. instead it was Russell’s own reputation that proved to be his undoing).

    I still think Russell (without being the Sole Survivor) was a better player.

  19. Ah too bad I haven’t had time to watch the recording yet. Oh well… He would have been my tip for the win. Philip had too much convincing to do of the jury, and Natalie really hadn’t done anything independent all game. Ashley and Natalie really needed to make a move earlier and get Rob out.

  20. Chasingvegas

    Very well deserved. As Jeff said, he played one of the best strategic games ever played over 22 seasons. Can’t wait for the next project from Rob, Around the World in 80 Days!!

  21. I was over the moon with his win – Rob has always been my favourite.

    Finally a winner has been chosen for the right reasons. He played a fantastic game.

    “Rob says he plans to begin a project with the History Channel” – Rob is nearly a week in with the project – he started the day after he was announced the winner.

  22. it was hard avoiding all the spoilers online but so worth it watching the show last night – i’ve watched every episode of every season of Survivor and Rob has always been my favourite contestant – my daughter and I were thrilled to see him win last night….Boston Rob certainly played the best game and finally took out the prize.

  23. Phillip and Natalie pretty much handed it to him on a plate during the Jury questioning. I’d like to know how many votes Rob actually got all up from the Jury. It was pretty frosty between Rob and Grant at the Reunioun also. Overall it was a pretty good season and am looking forward to the next one.

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