What is a wilderness therapy guide? As Cole Medders describes in this CarterMatt – Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers spotlight article, he basically takes disadvantaged youth out into the wilderness on a journey to help them find themselves, learn life lessons, and begin anew. It’s a noble, interesting pursuit, and there’s no denying that he is an interesting guy. He almost seems straight out the Millennials tribe from season 33 or the No Collar tribe from season 30 just as much as the Healers tribe this season, but these labels are often arbitrary.
The thing that you should know is that on paper, Cole is the sort of player who should have zero issue going out on Survivor and competing. Whether or not he handles the cutthroat nature of this game is an entirely different story.
Age – 24.
Location – Cole is from Little Rock, Arkansas, but that seems to have very little bearing on his life given that this is a guy who effectively travels everywhere and does whatever he wants whenever he wants to do it. We don’t foresee that changing regardless of what happens this season.
Bio – He lives out of a Toyota Prius, spends his time off traveling and seeing the world, and really doesn’t seem to care all that much about winning the money other than getting a bigger van for himself to live in. He’s very invested in his belief that human beings need to struggle, and if they aren’t doing this they become complacent and aren’t living to their full potential.
Past Survivor comparison – He compares himself to Spencer Bledsoe; maybe if you combine Spencer with Vince Sly or Jay Byars, we can see it a little more. Spencer is not anywhere near this unstructured in terms of his way of life.
Strengths – He’s the biggest outdoorsy guy this season, bar none. He’s perfect for the Healers tribe, mostly in that they may not have anyone else out there in the group with his skill set. He can be an asset that they aren’t quite getting anywhere else. He’s going to do well in challenges, and he’ll probably be a useful ally early in the game.
Weaknesses – Is Cole going to be too aloof for his own good? This is what doomed Vince on Survivor: Worlds Apart, given that he was so out-there that the other people on his tribe didn’t relate to him and he clashed with Joe and others. He needs to find a way to fit in and not be overbearing as a leader. He may have more survival experience than anyone, but nobody is going to want to be bossed around by a 24-year old in a game for a million dollars.
Pre-show prediction – Cole has a chance in that he’s probably a little more cutthroat than he comes across with his carefree attitude; we could totally see him pulling a Dreamz and screwing someone over before the end. His bigger problem will be getting there. We could see him as an early merge boot, but honestly we could see someone resenting him for his survival experience / sense of leadership and target him around the time of a tribe swap. It sucks for Cole, but that’s been an ever-increasing part of this game.
How well do you think that Cole Medders is going to do on Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers? Let us know in the comments below!
Also, click here to see some of our other CarterMatt spotlights on this season. (Photo: CBS.)