And the Sole Survivor of 'Survivor 46' Is ... ! (SPOILERS)

With record-setting idol blindsides and hilarious moments, 'Survivor 46' brought us one of the best winners of the New Era.

Jamie Lerner - Author

May 22 2024, Published 10:24 p.m. ET

'Survivor 46' final three: Charlie, Kenzie, Ben
Source: CBS

(L-R): Charlie, Kenzie, Ben

Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for the finale of Survivor 46.

Before Survivor 46 premiered, host Jeff Probst promoted it as having some of the most intense gameplay to date. And now that the season is over, we know exactly what he meant. Beginning with 18 castaways split into three tribes in the classic New Era format, the 26-day game led to one of the most shocking sets of Final Three players we've ever seen.

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The finale showed Maria go home in fifth place, followed by Liz, with a Final Three of Kenzie, Charlie, and Ben. As the three argued their case to the jury, all we could think was how they're potentially the most likable Final Three in history, yet no one would have predicted it at the beginning of the season. But who actually won and took home the title of Sole Survivor along with the $1 million prize?

Kenzie winner of 'Survivor 46'
Source: CBS
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Kenzie won 'Survivor 46' and is the season's Sole Survivor.

After Ben won the Final Four immunity challenge, he miscalculated that Liz was the biggest threat and sent her to fire. He decided to bring Charlie with him, underestimating Charlie's threat level, and he decided to give Kenzie the fire-making challenge to add to her resume. This made Charlie, Ben, and Kenzie one of the most likable Final Threes with three very clear and different stories.

As the jury questioned them, they each had the chance to make their case. Before getting started, however, Tiffany hilariously reminded the finalists that the jury was looking for "authentic" answers, not "Taylor Swift lyrics" or "rock songs," taking a little dig at both Charlie and Ben. The jury shared that they were looking for specific things from each finalist, but whether they would be able to deliver was up to them.

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Final Five immunity challenge
Source: CBS

(L-R): Jeff Probst, Charlie, Ben, Kenzie, Liz, Maria

Charlie argued that he played the most calculated game of the three of them and set himself up perfectly to sit in the Final Three by managing his threat level. He said that his goal was "Safety with Power." Ben admitted to playing an emotional game, but shared how that allowed him to align with people who would work with him until the end. Kenzie, however, was able to repeatedly bring the jury into her journey of getting to the end as the most social player.

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When it came to actually surviving, Kenzie was able to bring her story full circle by beginning the game without fire for a record-setting amount of time on Yanu. She went to almost every Tribal Council and participated in every challenge, she won two immunity challenges (with a little help from her friends), and was brought on every Sanctuary reward.

Ben was the season's lovable goof who pushed through anxiety and won a pivotal challenge. Charlie won two immunity challenges and was on the right side of every vote. Each finalist also shared how they would use the money and how they would set up the future for themselves and their families.

And in the end, Kenzie pulled out the win with five jury votes to Charlie's three! Congrats to the newest Sole Survivor and the winner of Survivor 46!

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