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The gang’s all here (Image: Archi Banal)
The gang’s all here (Image: Archi Banal)

Pop CultureFebruary 1, 2023

Treasure Island: Fans v Faves rankings, week one: My kingdom for a meat pack

The gang’s all here (Image: Archi Banal)
The gang’s all here (Image: Archi Banal)

Treasure Island is back, baby, and so are our power rankings. Tara Ward recaps all the big plays from the dramatic first week of Fans v Faves. 

Treasure Island: Fans v Faves has finally washed ashore, and after hoovering down the first three action-packed episodes, I’m fuller than a weatherman eating a plate of cold green nachos. Fans v Faves is Celebrity Treasure Island with a twist, with eight ex-CTI players returning to the game to compete against eight superfans. We’ve been promised a season of drama, danger and Dame Susan Devoy, but how “unhinged” will things really get? Listen, they’re giving out MEAT PACKS as prizes this season, which should tell you everything you need to know.

Chuck on your bib, grab a single oven mitt and let’s tuck into the week one power rankings for Treasure Island: Fans v Faves.


Micah took one for the team after his captain Jane swapped Wardie out of the elimination challenge, sending Micah to his fate. He and Josh Kronfeld had to spell the word ‘elimination’ out of wooden blocks they manoeuvred through a maze, but they may as well have asked him to spell out ‘first to go home’. Too cruel, too soon.


Another big loss for the Fans, with Jess being sent home in a tense elimination challenge against Art Green and a bunch of sacks. Jess had already proved herself as a physical threat earlier in the day by wrestling Alex King in the sea for an entire 45 minutes, which is approximately eight years in reality TV time. Justice for Jess. Justice for those sacks.

14. Dave Ward

This superfan has dreamed of playing the game for 20 years, so it’s no surprise he baulked at being the first castaway to be put up for elimination. I wouldn’t want to go home either, especially now they’re giving out meat packs willy-nilly. Onwards and upwards, Wardie.

13. Katie Middleton

Movement is power, positivity is strength and interpretive dance is the answer to everything. Never stop being the slurpy spaghetti, Katie.

12. Anna Thomas

A quiet week for the personal trainer, who fought hard in challenges and displayed admirable health and safety by wearing a solitary oven mitt at camp. Safety first, always.

11. Alex King

This Fave didn’t enjoy Josh Kronfeld’s campfire story about Chilean barbecues, but she did prove she could hang on to a life-ring for 45 minutes, which was nearly as long as Josh Kronfeld’s story about Chilean barbecues. A hero for the ages.

10. Josh Oakley

Josh won money for charity, swore at the Faves and said hi to his mum, thus covering all his Treasure Island bases.

9. Dame Susan Devoy

Absolute scenes from Dame Suzy D early in the game when she announced she wasn’t going to give us any “potty-mouthed” shenanigans this season. Then she promptly fell over on the beach, called Jayden Daniels “Curtis” and said she was “really, really, really good with balls”. She also announced that the only way she was going to win a challenge was to cheat, so bring out Lynette Forday’s inflatable coat hanger and let’s blow this shit up, Suzy D.

8. Lana Searle

Loving seeing Lana and Matty team up so that Lana can sing a lovely song about their new alliance. Also, Lana can kick a big woolly ball into a tiny paddock like a boss, and you don’t have to be a sheep to know that’s not easy. Forget Treasure Island, I’m predicting Lana Searle to win Country Calendar 2023.

7. Adam O’Brien

Adam’s commentary was a highlight of week one, and if he does ever get eliminated, he should come back and plonk himself down by a flax bush and keep saying things like “we’ve got these plonkers, plonking in the water” and “Matty McLean is a mask and he doesn’t blink” and “I just want to take that toothpick out of your mouth and stab you, in a gentle, kind way“. Words to live by, forever and ever, amen.

6. Art Green

Just a bachelor, standing over a sleeping four time world squash champion, pranking her by dangling a stick insect in her face. Jim may have a big vag, but now Art has a Suzy D-sized target on his back.

5. Joe Cotton

Saving all our love for Joe to be number one, number one, but sadly, not this week. Still, Joe has more power than anyone in the game realises, because she snores like a trucker, and sustained sleep deprivation will wear her teammates down until they are withered husks of their former selves. Sweet dreams, Joe Cotton.

4. Josh Kronfeld

Is this the first time we’ve seen the double naughty finger on Treasure Island? Science says yes.

Did someone just tell Josh they don’t care about Chilean barbecues? Risky move. The two-time Treasure Island winner proved he’s still a huge competitor this week with a strong physical performance and plenty of wisdom about how green wood doesn’t burn. Also, Josh Kronfeld wearing that True Bliss singlet is the best pop music/rugby union crossover since True Bliss kicked Bardot’s arse during the national anthem sing-off at the 2000 Bledisloe Cup. Never forget.

3. Lance Savali

Praise be to the Treasure Island gods for luring Lance back to the beach, because his refusal to take this batshit game seriously is exactly what we’re here for. He made alliances during a challenge, lovingly called his teammates “a bunch of has-beens” and he’s charming his way to the top three… or is he? Only the stick insect knows the truth.

2. Matty McLean

Also Matty McLean:

Bloody love to see the Faves captain playing the game like he wanted to the first time, sprinting into the jungle to make a secret alliance with Lana and then skipping out to make a secret alliance with Lance, before whipping up a flatpack barbecue and making big plays for elimination. “I’m just walking around going ‘aghghgh’,” Matty said, but he’s having a ball. But he’s also playing hard. But he’s chill, too. Also, never forget: HE’S MATTY MCLEAN DON’T MESS WITH HIM HE’S COMING FOR YOU.

1. Jane Yee

Oh captain, my captain. Some might say Jane Yee is The Spinoff’s first power rankings nepo baby, but others will note she won three challenges on the first day, had players crossing enemy lines to align with her, and uttered the words “main chassis” on national television like it was no big deal. Jane knows this game better than the meat tray in a flat pack barbecue, and her week had more sizzle than an All Black’s yarn about a Chilean hotplate. In fact, Jane was the show’s main chassis this week, and everybody else was simply the legs trying to attach themselves to her. Good work, god speed, and may Art Green never dangle a stick insect in anyone’s face again.

Treasure Island: Fans v Faves screens Monday to Wednesday at 7.30pm on TVNZ2 and streams on TVNZ+.

For our weekly Treasure Island: Fans v Faves debrief, follow The Real Pod on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.

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