Survivor Season 43 Premiere Recap and Live Blog

Survivor 43 Premiere Morriah Young
Pictured (L-R): Morriah Young and Jeff Probst. Photo: Robert Voets/CBS 

The season begins with a Jeff Probst voice-over: “This group of strangers has agreed to be abandoned in the Fijian Islands. They come from different backgrounds, cultures, and experiences. But despite their differences, they must rely on each other in order to survive. They’ll form a new society where they decide the rules of how this million dollar game is played. It’s up to them who stays and who goes. Each player must learn to adapt to their new society, or they’ll be voted out. In the end, only one will remain to claim the million dollar prize. Who will have what it takes to outwit, outplay, and outlast all the rest? This is Survivor 43!”

During Jeff’s intro, we hear from some of the new castaways. Ryan was born premature. Nneka grew up in Nigeria. Noelle is a Paralympian. Morriah hopes to make friends. Sami is only 19-years-old. Lindsay says she is Survivor‘s biggest fan. Karla says she is an adaptable and resilient person. Cody says he is going to play the game as hard and as fast as he can. Cassidy will refuse to let other people play her game. Elie is a psychologist. James is hoping for a chaotic game. Owen has dreamed about seeing his name in the opening credits of Survivor.

The new castaways greet Jeff at the marooning. He welcomes them all, and he says he can feel the energy. Jeanine says this is a dream come true. She shares that Survivor is her father’s first favorite American show after he immigrated from China. James has been a fan since the first season. He was inspired by Earl’s win in Survivor: Fiji. Gabler says his family watches Survivor together. Noelle has been watching the show since she was 10-years-old. She says losing her leg was the best thing to happen to her since it gave her a new perspective on life.

The three tribes are already divided. Cody, Justine, Nneka, Noelle, Jesse, and Dwight are on the red Vesi tribe. Geo, Lindsay, Cassidy, Karla, James, and Ryan are on the blue Coco tribe. Gabler, Owen, Sami, Elie, Morriah, and Jeanine are on the yellow Baka tribe. The tribes get ready for their first Reward Challenge. They must collect crates from the jungle and the water. The crates are puzzle pieces they must use to build a cube. Lastly, they must collect a key from high up on a bamboo. The winning tribe will earn a pot, machete, and flint. The Coco tribe was in last place, but they finish the cube puzzle first. Lindsay struggles retrieving the key, allowing Vesi and Baka a chance to catch up. Dwight struggles getting the key too, but Cody advises him how to get it. His suggestion works, and Dwight gets the key. Vesi wins reward!

The Vesi tribe arrives at camp. Cody is in high spirits after winning the first challenge. He binge-watched Survivor during the pandemic. The tribe members get to know each other, and they start work on a shelter. Dwight points out how no one knows how to build a shelter.

At the Baka tribe, Gabler says their tribe has strong guys and good personalities. He worries about being the oldest guy on the tribe. In order to get supplies, they must complete a challenge: Savvy or Sweat. Savvy requires them to solve a brainteaser. They have bones forming a number, and they must move two bones to form the largest number possible. They only get one guess. Sweat requires two tribe members to dig up supplies, which could take several hours. They can work together on Savvy, but only two people can work on Sweat. Sami offers to dig, but Owen says they should all work together.

The Coco tribe is faced with the same dilemma. Geo and Ryan volunteer to dig, and Ryan finds it after thirty minutes. Back on the Baka tribe, Sami finally figures it out. They can move two bones to form 511810. The Baka tribe gets their supplies too. Sami is worried about the perception of being a 19-year-old in the game, so he lies and tells his tribe members he is 22 years old.

Back on the Vesi tribe, Noelle wants to form an alliance with Justine. Meanwhile, Cody wonders if Noelle and Justine are already forming an alliance. He forms an alliance with Nneka and Jesse. Cody worries about Justine since she’s a sales representative. He thinks that could make her a threat. Cody also conveniently hides the fact that he’s a salesman himself. Jesse wants to play the middle, and he knows Justine and Noelle want to pull him into an alliance too. Jesse doesn’t know which alliance he wants to side with yet.

Over on the Baka tribe, they are struggling with building the shelter. Owen wants to start strategizing. He tries to talk game with everyone individually, but he notices everyone else is being too guarded. No one else is ready to start gaming just yet. Elie shares with her tribe members that her sister died of an overdose. She discusses the matter more in her confessional. Later, an alliance forms with Elie, Morriah, and Jeanine.

Cassidy is ready to start strategizing on the Coco tribe. She approaches Karla about working together. Lindsay also wants to work with Karla and Cassidy. Lindsay wanted to work with all girls, but she hopes to bring James into the alliance too. James realizes he’s the only man in this alliance, but he says he’s fine with it.

Sami makes fire for the Baka tribe. Gabler is still worried about being the oldest person on the tribe. He tries to bond with his other tribe members. He discusses music with Elie, and he tries to form an alliance with her. Elie says she’s undecided about working with him in her confessional, but she’s not ruling him out. Over on the Coco tribe, Karla and Geo bond being Latinos that are in the LGBT community. Geo wants to build an alliance with her and Ryan. Karla feels solid with them, but she’s already agreed to an alliance with Cassidy, Lindsay, and James. She didn’t expect people to want to align with her due to a perception of her being weak, so she’s surprised to be in the middle. Back on the Vesi tribe, Jesse opens up about his time in a gang and in juvenile hall. After his time there, he ended up getting his education and bettered his life. Meanwhile, Justine manages to finally get fire after the tribe shelter collapses. The fire goes out, so they have to start over again.

Later, a boat lands at each of their camps. Someone must be taken away for an adventure. Karla goes for the Coco tribe, Gabler goes for the Baka tribe, and Dwight goes for the Vesi tribe. The three land on a separate island. They must make their way together to a giant rock where they will make a group decision. They will have the opportunity to win an advantage, but they will risk their vote in the process. They all must choose a card and place it on the table. If they choose Safe, then they keep their votes and nothing happens. If they choose Risk, then they will gamble their vote for the chance to win an advantage. Karla chooses to play Safe, but Dwight and Gabler choose Risk. Dwight and Gabler must draw from a bag and find out back at camp what they drew. One of them won an advantage while the other just lost his vote at tribal council.

The Vesi tribe finally gets fire thanks to Justine. As they tend the fire, Dwight finally returns to camp. He tells them the truth about what happened, but Cody doesn’t believe his story. Gabler also tells his tribe members the truth back at the Baka tribe. They must find out the outcome of the draw in private. Gabler won the advantage; Dwight will not get to vote at his next tribal council. Gabler has won an immunity idol that can keep him safe for the first two tribal councils. It loses its power after the second tribal council. Dwight also reveals to his tribe members that he cannot vote at their first tribal council.

It’s time for the first immunity challenge of the season. They must race through obstacles and get a choice between table mazes. The first two tribes to finish their table maze will win immunity. The challenge begins, and obstacles include crawling through mud, digging under a log, going over a wall, and crossing a balance beam. Coco takes the early lead. Baka falls behind to third place when Jeanine struggles going under the log obstacle. Coco gets to the table mazes first. The other two tribes join them before they complete the puzzle. Ryan and Lindsay do the table maze for Coco, Jesse and Noelle do a straight shot table game for Vesi, and Gabler and Sami do a more complicated table maze for Baka. Ryan and Lindsay land three balls first. Coco wins immunity! Vesi also lands three balls before Baka lands one. Vesi wins immunity! Baka will go to tribal council tonight.

The scrambling begins on the Baka tribe. Gabler says he’s going to play a Shot in the Dark twist tonight. He says he doesn’t want to play his hidden immunity idol since it’s his fault they lost tonight. Elie tells Gabler they aren’t voting for him tonight. She says the target is Morriah. Elie later tells Jeanine that they can’t do an all women alliance since they need to keep the men for strength. Meanwhile, Sami shares with Morriah that he’s talked to Owen the least. Morriah and Sami pitch to Elie and Jeanine to vote out Owen tonight. Elie says in her confessional that she would rather not vote out Owen. Jeanine worries the three men could band together if they vote out Morriah. Jeanine shares her concern with Elie, and she is now torn. Does she stay with her plan to vote out Morriah, or will she agree to vote out Owen tonight?

It’s time for tribal council. Jeff asks about the first few days. Sami says life has been a joy. He says they have all been harmonious. Owen agrees that the game talk didn’t start until after the immunity challenge. Gabler says it was important to get to know everyone early. Morriah says they all gave it everything they had at the challenge, so she still feels like they won. Sami points out that moral victories mean nothing at immunity challenges. Owen agrees they want to win the competitions. Jeff asks if there was any blame for the loss. Gabler says he feels bad for letting people down, and he thinks he could be blamed for that. Elie says the decision tonight won’t be based on challenge performances. She says she cares more about who approached her to make a connection first. Jeanine agrees they need affirmation from other people to know who to trust. Morriah says it’s scary since they were in a happy mood, but now they have to vote someone out. Sami agrees that the game really starts now. Owen says whoever goes home tonight will regret not being more assertive in forming early bonds and alliances. Afterwards, it’s time for the vote.

Jeff reads the votes. The first vote is for…






Morriah is the first person voted out of Survivor 43.

And that wraps up the premiere of Survivor 43. Thanks for reading, and come back next week for another live recap.

About Steven Curtis 513 Articles
Steven is a graduate of the University of West Florida with a bachelor's degree in communication arts. He enjoys watching reality competition shows, such as American Idol, Survivor, Big Brother, and The Amazing Race.