Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains - Amanda Kimmel
Always a Bridesmaid
Amanda Kimmel is back for her third try at obtaining the title of the Ultimate Survivor. To be honest, she's come closer than anyone ever has without actually winning. In her first season with Survivor: China, Amanda was one of three finalists. Courtney Yates and Todd Herzog were her competition in the finals, and when it all came down to it, Amanda had no game when it came to the final tribal council.
Without a win, Amanda dared to come back the very next season with Survivor's first Fans vs. Favorites season. In this season, 10 past survivor "favorites" were chosen to play against the top ten ultimate fans of the show. And the season did not disappoint. In fact, as an avid Survivor fan, the Micronesia season of Fans vs. Favorites is my absolute favorite season of all time. Amanda Kimmel was a huge part of that. She played hard and made it, once again, to the final tribal council. This time, however, she only had one opponent instead of two - Parvati Shallow. Despite better odds, Amanda made the same mistakes at her second chance tribal. She played an awesome game, but simply couldn't convince the jury to vote her as the sole survivor. Instead of taking responsibility and pride in her manipulation of the game, Amanda shed tears that many did not feel were sincere, allowing Parvati to slide ahead in the votes.
But this time Amanda is ready to try again. And she's determined to win.
Amanda Kimmel in Micronesia
Being the only Survivor in the history of the game to play 78 full days (since she went all the way to the end twice), Amanda says she needed to take some time off after the back to back Survivor seasons. As therapy to get her head straight, she decided to take acting lessons and has fallen in love with it. Will we see Amanda on TV doing more than just Survivor in the future? It's definitely possible!
One question on everyone's mind as well is - Is Amanda still dating Ozzy? Ozzy Lusth and Amanda became quite close while competing in Survivor Micronesia's Fans vs. Favorites. Ozzy was originally on the Cook Islands season where he quickly became a fan favorite for his ability to dominate challenges and climb tall trees in seconds. Despite the fact that Amanda helped vote Ozzy from the game in one of the most exquisitely executed blindsides of all time, Ozzy and Amanda were still dating by the time the reunion show aired. Her Myspace page says she is "in a relationship", but finding out any updates since last May is difficult. Many websites seem to report that they have broken up, but as of this article, I can't say for sure.
Other Claims to Fame
When Amanda first joined the cast of Survivor: China, she was more than just a random face picked from the hundreds of applicants. In 2005, Kimmel was named Miss Montana USA and went on to compete in the 2005 Miss USA pageant.
In late 2005, she also traveled to the Philippines as the representative from the United States in the international Miss Earth pageant. Although she did not win, she did place in the top 10 at this pageant.
Amanda has worked as a model as well as an actress in recent years, and there is no doubt that her beauty gives her an edge in Survivor as well. With her easy-going personality and her ability to make friends easily, Amanda usually has no problem finding an alliance early and riding it out as long as she needs to. We'll see if she's able to make good choices in Heroes vs. Villains.
In its 20th season, Survivors will be divided into two tribes of past famous contestants. Heroes and Villains. Amanda Kimmel has earned herself a spot on the "Heroes" tribe. Even though she has been known to orchestrate her fair share of blindsides, Amanda is a good person at heart and strives to play fair. Her friendships seem to mean a lot to her on the island and she is never flippant about backstabbing someone in her alliance or ousting a friend.
Frankly, she's nice. Some would say she's too nice. Rather than proudly claim her actions in the game, she's been known to tear up and apologize for the times when she took the game into her own hands and made the tough choices a Survivor inevitably has to make. When being interviewed for the upcoming Heroes vs. Villains season, Amanda said she is ready to play more aggressively and go after the title of sole survivor.
I have to wonder if Amanda will have a bit of an advantage over some of the other Survivors since she has some built-in alliances already out there with her. James, who was also in both China and Micronesia, has long been an ally of Amanda. In fact, she lists him in her bio as being the player she most respects. As a fellow hero, James may prove to be a valuable asset to her in this game if they decide to play together from the start. Parvati is another friend of Amanda's. The two women became very close during Survivor: Micronesia, despite the fact that they were pitted against each other in the finale. Although Parvati has been dubbed "villain" this season, look for them to be in an early alliance that, if they both make it to the merge, could be a game-changer later on. Cirie was another contestant Amanda played with in the past, but since Amanda chose Parvati over Cirie to be in the finale, it's a toss-up whether they will be fast friends or not this season.
Either way, you can bet that Amanda will plan on using her beauty as her greatest asset. Her game is all about being sexy and using that to her full advantage. I fully expect her to latch on to James, Colby and JT straight away. And for all you haters out there, all I can say is, don't knock the strategy! It has most certainly worked for her (and others) many times in the past! Overall, I see Amanda as a huge threat to win it all, especially if she can make it to the merge.