Top Five, Baby! - Brent Sullivan's Survivor 42 recaps
Key pairs and open secrets
By Brent Sullivan | Published: March 21, 2022
Survivor 42 Episode 2 Recap/ analysis

Key pairs and open secrets

Welcome to “Top Five Baby!” where after each episode of Survivor, Brent Sullivan will try to break apart and find the top five moments that made a lasting impact on the season or moments that could at least affect the next few episodes. Sometimes the moments are obvious and other times ... not so much, but after years of watching and analyzing this show to myself, I like to share the ones that I think stand out the most.

Another good start to a Survivor season. This was a particularly good episode because we had more camp life with only one challenge. That’s always a nice treat, especially early in the season when you are still trying to get a feel for the contestants. Once again, I love seeing all the big characters, and as much as I didn’t want Marya to leave already since her story with her brother wasn’t complete, we as viewers are in a better spot having Maryanne still on our screens for at least one more week. So, what were these characters up to this week? Let’s find out in this week’s “Top Five Baby!”

1. The first Beware Advantage

The first Beware Advantage

Just like season 41, there are Beware Advantages hidden in each tribe camp again. Mike is the first one to find one this time around, and it is very similar to last season’s advantage where all three people have to say a phrase at the immunity challenge to activate them. As long as Mike can keep track of where the idol is, that is good for him. The bad part for him is he is trusting too many people with his secret. He immediately goes to Jenny, since they have a pretty tight alliance, but then he also goes to Daniel and tells him about the advantage as well. After Daniel tells Chanelle about it, more than half of their tribe now knows about his Beware Advantage.

Mike may be in a little bit of trouble here since there are so many others that know, they could easily vote him out to keep him from saying the phrase and trying to activate the idols. There is also a chance they can keep him from talking so no idols become active, and the whole Vati tribe holds the power plus they can stay as a close group and keep trust with Mike. I am really curious how this plays out and can’t wait to see what Mike does with it.

2. Daniel and Chanelle

Daniel and Chanelle

The Vati tribe has seemingly split into three equal pairs. Mike and Jenny are a pair, Lydia and Hai are pair, Daniel and Chanelle are a pair. The most important of these groups is Daniel and Chanelle. Even though the two of them seem like they have a great two-person alliance, both of them also have other people on the tribe coming to them with information and plans.

Daniel seems like he is also in a good position with his shoulder still obviously bothering him. He will be no threat later in the game to win any challenges, so that makes him someone easy to bring along. Also, with his good standing in his tribe, he should have plenty of people wanting to work with him. Chanelle seems to be in a similar good spot with other people wanting to work with her. They should be able to continue to work together deep into this game.

3. 100% Maryanne

100% Maryanne

Do you want to talk about characters? This season is full of them, but they don’t come much bigger than Maryanne! She is larger than life with her laugh and her smile. You can’t help but root for her when you see her. She is a ball of energy and always seems to be excited no matter what is going on.

The problem with that? You heard it from both Lindsay and Marya … that sort of behavior tends to wear on some people. There is not a lot to do out there except hang out with your tribemates, and if one of them is starting to get on your nerves for one reason or other, that could put a target on their back.

The other issue with her is that Jeff seems to be going to her for lots of questions at both Tribal and challenges. That may also start to rub some people the wrong way. She dodged a bullet this last time, but how long will she be able to do that?

4. The odd couple

The odd couple

I always love seeing team-ups like this, a matchup very much like a Stephen and JT matchup from Survivor: Tocantins. This season we have Jonathan and Omar or as Omar calls them: The meat shield and the brain shield. They seem to get along great, and they complement each other where the other one falls short. We got to see lots of different scenes of them hanging out together and them talking about real life outside of the game.

Overall, this tribe seems to be a tight group. With these two being an obvious pair and Lindsay being another close alliance member for Jonathan, this odd couple could be poised for a long run if they can stay out of Tribal Council until the merge (or swap?).

5. Does Drea make a mistake?

Does Drea make a mistake?

What is it with people not being able to keep a secret anymore? It seems like everyone is telling everyone else about whatever they find. Just like I talked about Mike up above, here we see Drea doing the same thing. She approaches Tori and Swati about the possibility of a women’s alliance and they both seem like they are on board with her idea. Then she tells them about her extra vote.

I can’t figure this one out. If the three women want to stick together, that’s already three against two, why tell them about the extra vote when it doesn’t help? When she leaves them, Swati immediately mentions to Tori that they should just vote Drea out, and Tori seems on board. So clearly, her telling them about the extra vote didn’t help her game at all. I am curious to see what happens to her next if Ika happens to lose and has to go back to Tribal this week.

So, there you have it for the second episode. Hopefully, with all the tribes sharing the screen this week, I covered everything. I was writing this on commercial breaks of the NCAA basketball tournament, so anything is possible. What did you think of Mike forgetting where he hid the idol? Do you think Daniel will make it to the end of the season with his bum shoulder? I want to hear from you, let me know if I missed any moments or if you think I was correct in my thinking, the interaction is part of what makes this so fun!

Please catch more of me here next week where I will try to bring you more fun top five!


Brent Sullivan - Top Five, Baby!Brent Sullivan is a long-time fanatic of Survivor and has been writing about it for years. When he is not writing, talking about, or applying to be on the show, he spends his time with family, doing nerdy IT stuff, and watching movies. Follow him on twitter: @BSully_13