As Survivor fans well know, this game is all about strategizing, backstabbing and forging sneaky alliances. Here's five examples of how choosing the right coconspirator can make one lucky castaway a millionaire.
1. Rob and Ambuh
Victor: Amber (and Rob)
Why it worked: Lust. Rob fell for Amber, who rode his coattails.
Speed bump: Rob begging Lex to keep Amber in the game (a move that ultimately cost Rob the win).
Memorable moment: Rob's early observation that Amber has "a smokin' ass."
Jeff Probst's take: "[Their alliance] was strategy. Then they fell in love, and that affected Rob's game. He beat his chest and said, 'I'm runnin' this game with my girl tucked under my arm, and anybody who thinks they're big enough to stop me, bring it.' The only person big enough to stop him was himself."
Survivor: The Australian OutbackVictor: TinaWhy it worked: Colby had the strength to win immunity, and Tina had the brains to play up to his mama's-boy tendencies.Speed bump: What speed bump? These two had each other's backs the whole way.Memorable moment: Colby's decision to honor the alliance and take Tina to the final two instead of Keith, even though it meant he'd likely lose.Probst's take: "They were strategic. They both picked a person they knew they could count on and [who] was strong enough to make it to the end. People say Colby lost. I don't know. Colby not taking the easy win is the only honorable decision in Survivor so far ." 4. Jenna and Heidi
Survivor: AmazonVictor: JennaWhy it worked: They considered themselves hot. How could they not bond?Speed bump: Jenna's whining when she was sick; Heidi's torch getting snuffed before reaching the final four.Memorable moment: Their infamous decision to strip down to nothing in exchange for some peanut butter.Probst's take: "Jenna and Heidi are a good example of making the best of what they had out there. I don't know if those two sought each other out as much as they ended up with each other. [But] it worked for them." 5. Tom and Ian
Survivor: PalauVictor: Jury's out until the finale episode airs May 15.Why it's working: Mutual respect. The 41-year-old firefighter and 23-year-old dolphin trainer clicked even before being picked for the Koror tribe. Both boast a strong work ethic, brains and strength.Speed bump: When Ian caught a clam, Tom upstaged him by slaying a shark. Will the desire to be top dog drive a wedge between them?Memorable moment: After catching snakes, the dynamic duo used the reptile blood to lure nearby sharks.Probst's take: "The bond between Ian and Tom [is] in a father-son way. But Ian is not gonna simply listen to Tom because he's older. Ian's got his own mind, and he's fighting to stay on top."