The last person to leave the game, the person so close to the end they can taste the money but has their opportunity to plead their case taken away at the very last moment. That person becomes ingrained in their respective season as the final recipient of “The Tribe Has Spoken” and earns a place in a very special group in Survivor history: The Day 38 Club.
Inside Survivor contributor Ian Walker continues the countdown of the updated and revised Day 38 Club rankings. The list takes into account the strength of a player’s game, character, and the power of their story.
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No. 39 – Christina Cha (One World)
Kim Spradlin is widely considered to be one of the best Survivor players ever. Known for her innocent charm and sharp strategic acumen, Kim had the game on lock from pretty much the merge onward in One World. She, therefore, could march to the Final Tribal Council with confidence, knowing she could beat anybody sitting next to her.
Thus, Kim chose to go to the end with her friends and closest allies, Chelsea Meissner and Sabrina Thompson, the stronger players, rather than Christina Cha, who was generally perceived as the biggest goat of the game. And so, with Immunity hanging around her neck, Kim chose to send Christina packing on Day 38.
Christina was an affable personality but a passive gameplayer and seemingly never involved in contributing to the main action. She wasn’t even integral to Kim’s alliance. Instead, Christina spent most of the season as henchperson to Alicia Rosa, a woman who spewed incredibly insensitive remarks both to the camera and to Christina’s face. And there were even a couple of times Christina was told straight up that she would be the backup plan in the event of an idol play.
Suffice to say, Christina did not display a lot of Survivor savvy and often was not very eloquent in moments that required her to be. “YOU’RE WRONG, SO SHUT UP!!” is not the best thing to say regarding conflict management. That said, given some of the personalities and ill-treatment she was dealing with, it’s understandable why Christina would snap under the circumstances.
While Christina’s gameplay was mostly ineffectual, her lack of action mainly came from the fact that she spent the majority of the game as the resilient cockroach that just couldn’t be squashed. She was never in the majority, often the most expendable of any given alliance, and was subjected to some truly horrible (editor’s note: and, let’s face it, racist) remarks from some of her fellow tribemates. But through it all, Christina persevered through the hard times with her dignity intact.
If not for Kourtney Moon breaking her wrist in the season’s first challenge and getting medevaced, Christina could very well have been the first person voted out. But she hung on, realizing her best way to move forward was to keep her head down and follow directions, which propelled her all the way to Day 38. However, her lack of agency in the game often left her playing catch up with everyone else.
Christina seems like a lovely person outside of Survivor and deserves all the kudos for putting up with the crap she endured on the island. Sadly, she was just not the most dynamic Survivor player, and, therefore, falls near the bottom of the Day 38 Club list.
Stay tuned to Inside Survivor as the Day 38 Club rankings continue over the coming days. Check out the previous entry here.