‘Survivor’ Season 43 Premiere Recap and Analysis — Who Was Voted Out First?

The highly anticipated Survivor Season 43 premiere hit CBS and Paramount+ on Sept. 21, 2022, and we have the full recap here. Host Jeff Probst and the producers wasted no time separating the 18 castaways into three tribes before arriving on the island of Fiji. The three reality TV tribes include the yellow Baka tribe, the blue Coco tribe, and the red Vesi tribe. Find out which tribe went to tribal council first and who was the first boot in Survivor Season 43.  

[Spoiler alert: This article contains potential spoilers about the Survivor Season 43 Premiere — Episode 1, ‘LIVIN’].

'Survivor' Season 43: Baka tribe members Sami Layadi and Mike Gabler working on a challenge together
‘Survivor’ Season 43: Baka Tribe: Sami Layadi and Mike ‘Gabler’ Gabler | Robert Voets/CBS/ Getty Images

The red Vesi tribe wins the first ‘Survivor’ Season 43 reward challenge 

Jeff Probst began the Survivor Season 43 premiere with an opening challenge to earn supplies (a pot, a machete, and a flint). Elie Scott, Mike Gabler, Morriah Young, Owen Knight, Jeanine Zheng, and Sami Layadi made up the yellow Baka tribe. Meanwhile, James Jones, Lindsay Carmine, Ryan Medrano, Geo Bustamante, Karla Cruz Godoy, and Cassidy Clark comprised the blue Coco tribe. Lastly, Dwight Moore, Nneka Ejere, Cody Assenmacher, Noelle Lambert, Jesse Lopez, and Justine Brennan competed with the red Vesi tribe buffs to begin season 43.

They raced into the jungle to get two wooden crates. Then another two tribe members brought a boat of crates into the beach. Lastly, the players had to stack the crates into a cube. The Vesi tribe won the first reward: the essentials they needed to survive. The other two tribes had to complete a challenge to earn their camp supplies.

Savvy or sweat? This challenge returns from the last two seasons with a twist. 

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Coco decided to volunteer two men to dig until they found their supplies. In contrast, the Baka tribe chose to all work together to figure out the brain teaser. It only took 30 minutes for the Coco tribe to find their supplies. Sami saved the Baka tribe by realizing the secret to turning a zero into two ones. He also chose to lie to his tribe and tell everyone he was 22 instead of his actual age, 19. 

Recap: Alliances were formed in ‘Survivor’ Season 43 Episode 1, ‘LIVIN’

In the Vesi tribe, Justine and Noelle formed a loose alliance together. Meanwhile, Nneka, Cody, and Jesse teamed up.; but Jesse also got pulled into Justine and Noelle’s twosome. 

In the Baka tribe, Owen tried to get some strategy going, but his tribemates preferred to work on camp life. Elie told her tribe about her sister’s death by overdose, and Janine and Moriah immediately jumped in for a hug. The three women joined forces for a solid immunity. 

Meanwhile, at the Coco tribe, Lindsay insisted that she was not making any decisions without the other two women in her tribe — Karla and Cassidy. But she wanted to pull James into the fold. Lindsay proves to be a huge player as she also attempts to bond with Gabler.

Geo and Karla also connected over their shared bond within the LGBTQ community. Geo, Ryan, and Karla have a tight bond. However, Karla also joined Lindsay and Cassidy, feeling slightly in the middle.  

On day 2, a boat arrived to take a tribe member away from each ‘Survivor’ group

Karla, Gabler, and Dwight chose to get on the boat. The twist is slightly different than Survivor 41 and 42. The threesome must wade to the giant rock in the ocean, which is more treacherous than they imagined. It’s slippery and dangerous, full of jellyfish. When they arrive, the twist is very similar. They can choose to risk or not risk their vote. If they risk their vote, they could get an advantage or lose their vote at the next tribal council, the same as the previous two seasons.

However, instead of a wheel to turn separately, the three castaways stayed together and secretly chose whether to risk their vote. Karla decided to play it safe while Gabler and Dwight risked their votes and pulled out a parchment. They weren’t allowed to read what they received until they returned to camp.

Vesi spent 30 hours without fire until Justine finally started a fire for their tribe. That’s when both Gabler and Dwight returned to their respective camps. Both men told the truth to their team and revealed what had happened. Gabler ended up with an immunity idol for the following two tribal councils. Meanwhile, Dwight lost his vote at the next tribal. 

‘Survivor’ Season 43 premiere recap: Coco won the first immunity challenge

The Survivor Season 43 premiere immunity challenge is incredible, with two gorgeous immunity idols. It’s long and complicated with elements that viewers have seen before. However, in the end, the tribes can choose between three table puzzles. With some amazing teamwork, Coco made it through to the puzzles first, selecting the maze. Next, Vesi chose the straight shot. Baka ended up with the obstacle. Coco finished first and then Vesi, sending Baka to the first tribal council.

Morriah is voted out in the first tribal council in ‘Survivor’ Season 43 Episode 1

When Vesi returned to the camp, Gabler decided to play his “shot in the dark,” because he lost the challenge for the group. However, Lindsay easily talked him out of it. They debated voting out Owen versus Morriah. In the Survivor Season 43 premiere episode 1, the Vesi tribe voted out Morriah, and only she voted for Owen. So, at least the tribe is united in something.

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