Who would have thought, way back during that first or second episode when Shane confessed to the camera with all the neurotic drama he could muster that he quit smoking as he embarked on Survivor, that he would come within a heartbeat of the final four? Nicotine withdrawal, combined with his acid tongue, seemed a recipe for a quick demise. In retrospect, it's good that didn't happen: His psycho fits provided some much needed drama this season. Another surprise: This season's final two isn't shaping up to be a case of choosing the lesser of two evils. Here's my prediction for sole survivor, from least likely to most likely:
Terry // Odds: Almost less than zero // If someone is going to dominate the competition, you hope for a Colby, who at least had some degree of grace and modesty. "Captain America's" cocky, up-yours attitude toward the end has rightly burned bridges. If he slides into the final two – at this point, it would almost be surprising if he doesn't – his opponent will be a shoo-in, although he may get a few "well, he sure played hard" votes.
Danielle // Odds: Fifty-fifty // She has made virtually no impression; I couldn't tell you one distinguishing thing about her or one drama in which she played a part. In other words, she may be bland, but she may under-the-radar her way into a million bucks.
Aras // Odds: Sixty-forty // Aras unimpressed me early on with some of his New-Agey babble, but he emerged as a strong player who was also capable of remaining a friend to most.
Cirie // Odds: Excellent // She won't get Shane's vote after her uncharacteristically aggressive maneuvering of his demise in the last episode, but she mastered "under the radar" and has few to no enemies on the jury. I liked her from the first episode when the alpha males had her on the chopping block as dead weight, and her sassy commentary was among the best to be seen this season. Her wit and endearing personality will certainly work to her advantage. Cirie's victory will be sweet to everyone who knows he or she would have been on that chopping block, too.
The finale fills CBS' primetime slate this Sunday.