Seamus watches as his torch gets extinguished.

Shock result: Strategist Seamus is the first castaway to be voted off Survivor South Africa: Philippines. Watch the intrigue next week Thursday at 19:00 on M-Net 101 and on DStv Now.

An “Ace” up some tribe members’ sleeves resulted in a surprise tribal council result in the very first strategy-packed and fast-paced episode of Survivor South Africa Philippines. Even though he played the South African version of the “greatest game on Earth” with gusto right from the moment he set foot on the island, property broker Seamus Holmes (25) from Durban, became the first castaway to be voted off this season at tribal council.  

Being an unapologetic villain, strategist and super fan of the Survivor worldwide franchise, Seamus planned to tell lies and orchestrate blindsides aplenty. Little did he know how his fellow Survivors would turn his craving for chaos into his own demise. 

When his tribe, Luzon, lost the immunity challenge – and the reward of fire - to tribe Mindanao, everything was going Seamus’s way. Friendly “misfit” and down-to-earth guy-next-door Ace was the tribe's obvious target after he and adventure camp manager Tom didn’t live up to their expectations during the fire-making challenge. In a genius move at the time, Seamus then started to plot against Tom, whom he quickly identified as a master of playing the social side of the game. 

It seemed as if everyone was buying into the plan to blindside Tom. In the meantime, however, Tom’s friend Chané, who believed that it was not Tom’s time to go yet, persuaded her bestie Annalize that they had what it took to give Seamus a little bit of his own medicine –  blindsiding HIM! To pull this off they had to tell Tom about Seamus’s strategy and in an unforeseen chain of events, Tom decided to confront the puppet master. That left the tribe divided with a group forming around Tom and others sticking to Seamus’ alliance. The tables were now turned as the man at the top of the pack of cards – the swing vote whose decision at tribal council would seal either Tom or Seamus’ fate – was now none other than the tribe’s initial target, Ace. 

Did the fact that Tom consoled an emotional and conflicted Ace the evening before, advising him to follow his heart, play a role when Ace wrote Seamus’s name down? Or is Ace perhaps outsmarting his tribemates from the get-go too? Only time will tell…

“The turn of events in this week’s Survivor SA just shows once again that everything is unpredictable on the island and that anything can happen at any time in this game,” says M-Net’s Head of Publicity, Lani Lombard. “These castaways all desperately want to win the game they love and will go to great lenghts to become the Sole Survivor. It’s going to be an explosive series.”

While the Luzon tribe was plotting and scheming before their first tribal council, life was just as eventful at tribe Mindanao. One castaway killed a snake, another told all kinds of untruths and the search for a hidden immunity idol began immediately. 

While the intrigue will continue next week Thursday at 19:00 on M-Net 101, Survivor fans can also have great fun online. For the first time ever, M-Net has created a Virtual Reality experience for fans of the show. By simply logging on to www.mnet.tv/survivorsa viewers can click through to a full 360 degree experience of the Survivor SA islands, living areas as well as each challenge site as the weeks progress. Fans can now see and experience the surroundings of the exotic Philippines exactly as the Survivor contestants did, and stumble upon some clues along the way that could put them in line to win some great prizes while doing so! 

Survivor SA is powered by the Huawei P20 Pro and is produced by Afrokaans Film and TV.

The show is also available on DStv Catch-Up and Catch-Up Plus.