Hi everyone! Welcome to a new season of Survivor. I’m so excited to be writing about this season so be sure to join me every week for my recap! The premiere is this week, Wednesday night at 8pm on CBS! Don’t miss it.
As a quick reintroduction of myself, I was on Survivor: Vanuatu and then Survivor Micronesia: Fans vs. Favorites. Survivor: Vanuatu, as you might remember, was a season of men versus women just like this upcoming season, so I hope to be able to provide some insight into the ins and outs of this season of Survivor.
I can’t wait to tell you what I think of this brand new cast, but first, let’s talk about this season’s new twists! First of all, I am SO glad we’re done with redemption island. Once you’re out, that’s it. You’re out. It’s over. See ya later. Getting your torch extinguished by Jeff will now go back to meaning what it always did, that your life in the game is over.
Secondly, although the concept of men versus women is not brand new, the idea of everyone living on one beach together is and I think that will make for a very interesting dynamic and I’m certainly excited to see what kind of drama that brings about.
Also, this season there is a change in the rules for the hidden immunity idol. If you find your tribe’s hidden idol, the rule is now that you must give it to someone on the other tribe. This could make for a lot of interesting negotiations between those who find the idol on opposing tribes. I look forward to seeing how it plays out.
And finally, there will be a number of “self-challenges,” meaning challenges where the tribes have to just run them themselves and there is no Jeff Probst to officiate or to commentate.
Now, let’s get to this brand new cast! (Can you tell I’m excited there are no returning contestants this season?)
I’ll tell you my favorites up front, and my impressions are just from their cbs.com videos, so these favorites are subject to change after the premiere this week.
My favorite female is Kim, the bridesmaid dress boutique owner who also happens to be an outdoor adventure guide, but she’s not going to tell anyone that. I think she seems super athletic and competitive and I like her chances.
As for the guys, I like Matt, the San Francisco lawyer with his own law firm (and no, not just because he’s a cute lawyer). I also like Michael, the banker from Seattle who does not seem like a banker at all. He said it was his third time applying and he seems so excited that he finally got on. I always root for the applicants, especially because now we are so few and far between.
As for the rest of the cast, here are my initial thoughts:
Chelsea seems to be Whitney 2.0. She says she grew up on a farm and trained wild horses. The things she was saying were interesting, but for some reason, I found her to be boring. If she really does know how to spear fish like she says, maybe she will be an asset though.
Christina made me cringe. She is the LA native travel and food writer. The way she said “I’m not your quintessential Asian girl,” though rubbed me the wrong way. What is she saying about Asians? Don’t be self-hating.
Speaking of self-hating, this season we have the gay republican, Colton. He’s only 20 years old and from Alabama. I do like the fact that he has been a Survivor fan for a very long time. He said that at 10 years old had a Survivor themed birthday party. I hear he’s the villain of the season. I’m looking forward to loving to hate him.
Next we have Monica. The 41-year-old NFL wife. Is there anything else to her besides who her husband is? She was not particularly interesting to me.
Is Jay the next Matt Elrod? He’s a 24-year-old model from South Carolina who has gone on mission trips. He seems likeable enough.
We also have our first little person on Survivor this season. Leif is a phlebotomist, meaning he draws people’s blood. Will he be able to fit in and do well enough in the challenges for all the big guys to keep him around? It remains to be seen.
Then we have Kat, the 22-year-old UCF senior. She calls herself the next Jamie Dugan. Does that mean we’ll see her play a fake hidden immunity idol, as well?
I’m a big fan of Sabrina. She’s a fellow New Yorker, so how could I not root for her? She’s a teacher by day and a jewelry designer by night. She says she has a mouth on her which will be both her strength and her weakness. I hope she sticks around for a while because she cracks me up. She puts up with rats in NYC subway, so she should be fine on Survivor.
Speaking of mouthy girls, we’ve also got Alicia who teaches high school special education. She’s already ripping on the other girls in her pre-game video saying she’s not a size zero like these other girls. I think she will be entertaining to watch, but may not last too long.
I think Kourtney will also struggle on Survivor. Yes, she’s a mechanic and a single mom to a 7-year-old son, but she says she wants to play with integrity, she doesn’t want to flip flop or stab people in back. Anyone who says they’d rather be a hero in heroes versus villains is kind of lame in my opinion and not going to make it very far in this game.
Then we have a guy named Troy who wants to go by “Troyzan.” That is pretty annoying. Though he has been preparing to be on Survivor for 11 years. Will he be grating to his other cast members? I’m gonna go with, yes.
Also, we have Jonas, a sushi chef born in Hawaii. He claims he recognizes that this is not an intimidating profession, but then maybe he should have done a bit more working out before coming to the island.
Our oldest woman this season is Nina. Even though she used to be LAPD, I think she’s in trouble. She won’t fit in with the group of young girls.
Then we have Greg who ALSO wants to go by Tarzan. Jeez. He’s a plastic surgeon but fancies himself an adventurer. He also has a crazy Coach-like story about being on a plane that crashed in Nicaragua. The only difference is I bet he is telling the truth. He claims he does not care about the money just wants to win.
Finally we have Bill, the Iraq war veteran. Let’s see if he can use that to his advantage.
Those are my initial thoughts on the cast. What do you think? Who are your pre-season favorites? Who do you think is in trouble? What do you think of the new twists this season? Leave it in the comments!
I hope you’ll all join me later this week for my recap of the premiere of Survivor One World. Until then, don’t forget to follow me on Twitter (@eorlins) where I’m always tweeting about reality TV. Signing off for now, with a new season around the corner, xoxo, Eliza.