Might be interesting to see what some folks think on season breakdown, now that we've got more activity boosting the Survivor community - here's my rough season breakdown by tier, can't exactly place them line by line:
Tier 1: Micronesia, Heroes v Villains, Caramoan, Philippines, Thailand, Cook Islands, China, Samoa, San Juan Del Sur, Guatemala
Tier 2: Borneo, Aussie Outback, Panama, Tocantins, Marquesas, Worlds Apart, Nicaragua, Cagayan, Blood vs Water
Tier 3: All-Stars, Palau, Pearl Islands, Africa, Amazon, One World
Tier 4: Vanuatu, Fiji, Gabon, Redemption Island, South Pacific
Guatemala was the first season with an idol and had a colorful cast that I think is under appreciated, some obvious great seasons in that first tier are due to "returnee" status, and I thought some unique folks in Philippines/Cook/China/Samoa were fantastic, Russel owned his season and I don't find him nearly as unlikable. Todd's China dominance and Brian's Thailand game really appealed to me, even if Brian nearly bombed out in his FTC to edge out the horrendous Clay.
Post-merge SJDS was awesome too.
Some early series greats created a lot of foundation for me in watching this show, even though I watched S3-S10 after a lot of newer ones. Tribe dynamics in Tocantins, Panama, and Cagayan were fun to watch and see play out, much like Worlds Apart is currently (and depending on what happens moving forward, World Apart could move up to Tier 1 for me.) The first instance of BvW was a nice twist and Nicaragua has a slew of colorful characters I'd love to see play again, even if people didn't like the season overall.
All-Stars was a bit disappointing for me - really thought they had a lot of floaters come back, even if they were iconic that doesn't mean I wanted to see them play again (Rudy, Tom B...most of the winners even weren't fun a second time around); Palau I was meh on because I thought Steph went deeper after her tribes decimation, but glad she didnt' so Guatemala could happen. The rest are just either seasons where predictable things happened, or I didn't like the characters as much (though granted I didn't appreciate Rob C in Amazon until much later, and was bummed he was an early All-Stars boot.)
Vanuatu, meh, not bad and I like that the ladies took over, but then Chris won and I was like "ugh." Fiji and Gabon had some cool characters (CORRINE!) but overall not fantastic seasons (Big Brother style Fiji and the weird division of tribes in Gabon..)
Redemption Island + SPacific - in theory, cool to have 2 returnees from other seasons and see how that dynamic works out, but Redemption Island as a concept was always SO predictable, rarely did someone "upset" out there and kick out someone super strong. Not to mention I'm not a Boston Rob fan, Philip was disgusting (now I appreciate Ashley from that season SO much more for her fierce play), and Coach was tiring in his third appearance.