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Survivor in the Media


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#1441

WileyCoyote

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Posted May 14, 2012 @ 3:12 AM

Entertainment Weekly marvels that "The Right Person Won" (their subtitle for their recep): http://tvrecaps.ew.c...p-kim-spradlin/
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#1442

Unconditional

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Posted May 14, 2012 @ 11:34 AM

I'm fine with that. It was awesome that even though this season started off as a train wreck, it didn't end up with a 1 and 1-A finish.
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#1443

kelkon

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Posted May 14, 2012 @ 7:48 PM

Here's what Alicia had to say about her experience.
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#1444

rit56

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Posted May 14, 2012 @ 8:04 PM

Well this was the worst season ever and the ratings showed that. Unlikeable talent along with boring challenges and a boring and predictable girls rule final. All the press the past week of "An All Girls Final" helped usher in the lowest watched final in the series history. I can't decide which was worse, this season or last years with all sectarian, religion going on. CBS has a big problem with this show. Back to back. The 2 worst seasons ever.
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#1445

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Posted May 15, 2012 @ 2:41 AM

Well this was the worst season ever


Well different strokes and all, because I thought this was one excellent season and probably the best we've had since China (all stars excluded). The season was very well edited, the contestants were likeable for the most part and tri dimensional and I stayed invested right up to the end. It's certainly one of my favorite seasons and one of my favorite winners. As for the challenges, I thought most of them were great. Certainly better than what we've had this last couple of years. As for the ratings, they slipped across the table for the whole reality genre, and Survivor still manages to be one of the most watched show of the year.
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#1446

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Posted Jun 5, 2012 @ 1:38 AM

Apparently, there's now a Survivor radio show. Some really good interviews, with some people not even Cesternino has managed to poach. (The ones with Vecepia and Kelly Wiglesworth are especially worth listening to IMO.)

Edited by SnideAsides, Jun 5, 2012 @ 1:41 AM.

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#1447

Bob Sambob

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Posted Jun 12, 2012 @ 8:36 PM

SnideAsides:

Apparently, there's now a Survivor radio show. Some really good interviews, with some people not even Cesternino has managed to poach. (The ones with Vecepia and Kelly Wiglesworth are especially worth listening to IMO.)

Survivor Oz: It's actually kind of fun, especially when the Survivors open up and get bitchy. Kathy from FvF is a good example. The Robb Z. interview has actually become quite infamous, because he blasted and bashed Rob C., which prompted all of C.'s listeners to track it down, which is what has actually made this new show part of the consciousness. (Rob's retort blew it up even further, forcing Ben to have to deal with it here.)
I'd suggest the Ryan Opray interview, because he spills on Osten quitting -- Probst turned the cameras off and told the Morgans that if Osten didn't admit to wanting to quit, he would keep them there all night asking question after question. They were adamant about just giving him his wish and voting him out the old-fashioned way, but they wanted the quitter storyline for TV. I guess they thought it would justify the Outcast twist, i.e. people FIGHTING to come back.
And now, apparently he's landed Greg Buis for an upcoming interview, something Rob C., The Tribe and Dom & Colin haven't been able to do.

Edited by Bob Sambob, Jun 12, 2012 @ 8:38 PM.

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#1448

Unconditional

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Posted Jun 14, 2012 @ 3:50 AM

The interviews range between slightly dull to extremely interesting. Chris is still the #1 interview as far as I'm concerned. A lot of the info that they share are things I've picked up here and there over time, but every once in a while someone says something I haven't heard.

Chris really spilled everything he knew when it came to people coming back. Apparently CBS had contacted Bob twice to play again and both times called him back and told him they didn't need him again. The same goes for Twila. Chris said he hadn't been called at all, which is an absolute crime.

I've always enjoyed the casts from the first three seasons in particular, so hearing from Clarence was great because he hasn't stayed involved with the show and it's different from the rest of the robots from the newer seasons. I'm not surprised that Mitchell is still toeing the company line on the whole "Amber and Rob weren't dating before All-Stars, they hated each other!" facade.

Edited by Unconditional, Jun 14, 2012 @ 3:52 AM.

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#1449

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Posted Jul 2, 2012 @ 3:22 PM

Is Survivor the only great reality TV show? asks the AV Club, and answers in the affirmative, citing only the first two seasons and saying it was all downhill from there. It's interesting how Survivor means something completely different to me (and perhaps to people on this forum) than it does to most people. I love Survivor, but not for any of the reasons here, not really.
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#1450

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Posted Jul 2, 2012 @ 6:07 PM

The moment that the author called The Amazing Race a "copycat," I couldn't take him seriously. If this were a debate, he would have stamped "DUMBASS" upon his forehead. And really . . . Survivor hasn't entered a "long, torturous decline"? Dumbass.
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#1451

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Posted Jul 3, 2012 @ 4:34 AM

Not to mention... copycat of what? Of Survivor? Well, of course only one show is going to be "great" if only one show is original. (Not to mention several reality shows - Big Brother and The Mole, for example - were on in ohter countries before Survivor even started.)
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#1452

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Posted Jul 5, 2012 @ 2:30 AM

Wow, that is one of the worst-written pieces of drivel I have read in a long time. Todd Van Der Werff throws out all these ideas without presenting any real evidence to support his claims.

1) As Snide Asides noted, BB and The Mole predate Survivor. Just because those shows didn't exist in the U.S. doesn't mean TVDW may ignore them.

2) TVDW casually mentions Real World and American Family, but fails to talk about the way Survivor copied significant elements of both those shows.

3) I see Survivor as a BB knock-off, with only a change in location. Pretty much everything else is the same. The differences are details.

4) I am still wondering how he arrived at his conclusion that TAR is a "direct copycat", when it bears as good as no resemblance to Survivor. If Bruckheimer lifted ideas, you could say he borrowed a bit from The Mole.

5) If anything, TAR may owe its existence to a short-lived reality TV show called :::drum roll::: Race Around the World. That predates both TAR and Survivor.

6) There was also a show that debuted the same year as TAR, but that lasted only one season (and I cannot remember its name to save my life) where teams raced around the world, but totally unstructured. No detours or roadblocks. It was simply a race around the world. They merely had to make certain checkpoints. I liked the format better and was sorry it failed. TVDW should have at least mentioned it.

7) My biggest concern with articles like this one: I fear that some of these "reviews" may not be unbiased or impartial, but paid advertising. Especially fluff like TVDW's piece, where he expresses opinion as if it is fact. How silly is that!

Thanks KimberStormer for posting! I have no idea why the article riled me up like it did. ;-)
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#1453

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Posted Jul 5, 2012 @ 4:52 AM

Survivor actually predates Big Brother both in the US and internationally (Expedition Robinson premiered in Sweden in 1997, while Big Brother premiered in the Netherlands in 1999).

I agree that they both owe quite a bit to The Real World and American Family, though.

Edited by BML1980, Jul 5, 2012 @ 4:54 AM.

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#1454

FrogsRule

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Posted Jul 5, 2012 @ 6:11 AM

BML1980, your post made me go back and look. It seems that the Big Brother / Survivor debate rages. Here is the Wikipedia article with all the hollering (including mentions of shows I was not familiar with).

Edited by FrogsRule, Jul 5, 2012 @ 6:12 AM.

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#1455

KimberStormer

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Posted Jul 5, 2012 @ 8:06 AM

No problem! I've never even seen TAR (What's a good season to start with?) and yet this article annoyed me too.
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#1456

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Posted Jul 5, 2012 @ 12:27 PM

6) There was also a show that debuted the same year as TAR, but that lasted only one season (and I cannot remember its name to save my life) where teams raced around the world, but totally unstructured. No detours or roadblocks. It was simply a race around the world. They merely had to make certain checkpoints. I liked the format better and was sorry it failed. TVDW should have at least mentioned it.


Wasn't this Lost? Before Lost was, you know, LOST.
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#1457

FrogsRule

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Posted Jul 5, 2012 @ 2:11 PM

Yes, enlightenedbum, that's it! Found it on Wikipedia. Wish Conan O'Brien would bring it back.

And I remembered right (yea!). It debuted the same night as TAR. Wonder if its fate would have been different without TAR?
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#1458

BML1980

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Posted Jul 5, 2012 @ 2:56 PM

Thanks FrogsRule, that's interesting; I guess I missed that when I did my oh so thorough, two-minute internet research. :)

I think what we've learned here is that there really are no new ideas under the sun, or Hollywood at least.

Either way, I question how many actual seasons of Survivor the author of the article has seen if he truly thinks Australia was the best season. Sure, he's entitled to his opinion, but that season just seems incredibly boring when compared to other seasons like Cook Islands, China, Micronesia and HvV, imo.

Edited by BML1980, Jul 5, 2012 @ 2:56 PM.

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#1459

Unconditional

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Posted Jul 6, 2012 @ 12:32 AM

Not that I agree with the article but I also think Australia is the best season. That is the season that showed everyone how much more complex and demanding Survivor is compared to all other competition-based reality TV shows. You saw a guy lose 40 pounds in 40 days, someone pass out and get burned making a fire, extreme flooding, and severe malnutrition and lethargy. And while all of that is going on there is still really good gameplay on both tribes that also happen to be full of likable people, which actually drives home the idea that this is a group of everyday people that come from all walks of life and not just 20 "I was recruited to be here" mactors. It raised the question of what's best for players in terms of alliances: people they liked and got along with or people they felt complimented their team the best and could help them win? It was also a substantial upgrade in the strategy department with 4 people really coming into the season with an understanding of how to play a strategic game Mike/Jeff/Tina/Colby.

Long story short I doubt we'll ever have a season that will surpass it in terms of showing how unique the game is. The season may seem boring to some in comparison to the gimmick/"blindside" era because TPTB dropped most of the meaningful elements that made people watch the show in the first place in order to build an episodic ratings competitor.

Edited by Unconditional, Jul 6, 2012 @ 12:32 AM.

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#1460

FrogsRule

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Posted Jul 6, 2012 @ 2:58 AM

First, so KimberStormer's question does not get overlooked: I would start with TAR Season One. As with Survivor, since it was all so new and racers did not have anyone to get racing tips from in advance of the race, it's raw fun. Lots more racer mistakes in the early years.

That said, TAR has greatly improved its casting in the past few years. With the exception of the crossover contestants :::shakes head::: like Rob and Amber (Survivor) or Brendon and Rachel (BB), TAR casting eventually managed to start casting athletic women and athletic minorities and athletic older teams, although the original Asshats managed to kick butt pretty good in their early TAR season.

I don't see Survivor nearly as complex and demanding as TAR. It is more complex and demanding than Big Brother (but that doesn't say a lot), but the players don't have to budget money, make travel connections, communicate in ten different languages, eat on the run, and cart a month's worth of clothes, personal hygiene articles, and whatever around on their backs while running. Except for the last few seasons of TAR, Survivor does have a tougher social game (and I don't like how Bruckheimer is taking TAR into that Survivor mode), but Survivor's physical game is not nearly as demanding as TAR.

To the question of there not being anything original, I agree and disagree. :-) In real life, regardless of whether we work in accounting, science, entertainment, theology, law, architecture, any field that relies heavily on ideas, everything is derivative. An American Family may have been one of the very first examples of reality TV, just without competition, and as such is the basis for Survivor, BB, Real Housewives of..., and just about every other "social" unscripted show.

But it too was "derivative" of plain old documentaries, sometimes defined as "a picture of real life in the lives of others" (imdb.com). An American Family took that idea and derived the concept of filming an ordinary family's daily life. Survivor & Co. came along and took that idea and derived the concept of doing so for entertainment.

I don't believe that there should ever be the expectation of 100% originality in anything. I guess I am trying to say I think that 100% originality is impossible to achieve. Because we are human, what we create comes from what someone before us has created.

And THAT, to me, is the biggest flaw in the article that got this discussion going. :-) Does anyone know if the author happens to be very young? He sounds a bit immature. Of course, he could be 50 and still be immature!

BML, I also wasn't horribly impressed with the Australia season. Won't go into detail here - wrong thread - just will say I only watched it with one eye open. Didn't much care about the people in that season.
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#1461

Isuzu

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Posted Jul 7, 2012 @ 6:03 PM

I see Survivor as a BB knock-off, with only a change in location. Pretty much everything else is the same. The differences are details.


Survivor looks nothing like the original Big Brother it's supposed to be a knock-off of. If anything, the first season of Big Brother US, which followed the formula of every other Big Brothers around the world, was a failure, which prompted the producers to "inspire" themselves heavily from the hugely successful Survivor for their second season. The Big Brother that exists now in the US is thus a sort of Survivor in a house, not the other way around (this is unique to the US by the way).

the players don't have to (...) eat on the run, and cart a month's worth of clothes, personal hygiene articles, and whatever around (...) Survivor's physical game is not nearly as demanding as TAR.


They don't actually have "food, clothes or articles of personal hygiene" (give or take a reward challenge once every blue moon) to carry around or not. And since TAR doesn't starve their participants (they can choose to not eat, but many of them do eat), and they still get to sleep on comfy hotels at the various pit stops, in no way shape or forms is it more demanding than 39 days starving on an island while still being forced to partake in sometimes very physical challenges. TAR is also way shorter (around 21 days). TAR does ask a lot of their participants, but I'd rather say they ask for a different skillset.

Edited by Isuzu, Jul 7, 2012 @ 6:05 PM.

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#1462

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Posted Jul 7, 2012 @ 6:41 PM

That said, TAR has greatly improved its casting in the past few years.


Yikes. I could not disagree more. TAR wise, I'd suggest you watch the first five seasons, possibly the sixth (it has my favorite team ever, but also a lot of gigantic assholes, one of whom should have been kicked off the show for hitting his wife), the seventh (unless you REALLY hate Boston Rob and/or Amber as they are prominent), skip 8 and 9, 10 is marginal, All Stars is weird, 12 is great, and then it's downhill from there. Not a lot of likable teams in the past four years and I'm probably out on the show though I might check out the premiere to see if I actually like someone.

Edited by enlightenedbum, Jul 7, 2012 @ 6:42 PM.

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#1463

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Posted Jul 7, 2012 @ 7:06 PM

enlightenedbum, I agree that a lot of the personalities TAR has recruited in recent years have been awful. As noted, especially once they started mimicking Survivor's penchant for recruiting mactors, there have been problems.

What I was referring to was TAR's inability its first several years to cast teams of color, or older teams, or two-women teams who were athletic. They had no problem casting young, white, two-men teams that were interesting, or even young, white, male-female teams that were interesting.

But it took them forever to recognize that the U.S. has plenty of grrrrreat athletes who are middle-aged, female, or African-American or other non-white ethnicities. In the early years, it always seemed to me that they cast people of color or women or older racers who were stereotypes, and not in good shape.

All the while, Survivor had figured out that if they cast a diverse set of people, the game was more interesting. Once TAR caught up with that concept, I liked some of the new teams they cast. Yes, casting should improve - mainly (like Survivor) they should cease and desist casting mactors. For me, that is ruining both shows.
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#1464

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Posted Jul 7, 2012 @ 9:29 PM

I don't agree. Survivor has especially had issues with casting black people as stereotypes. Even more so in the early days. Was there a black cast member who wasn't described as lazy before, like, Palau (Ibrahim)? Maybe Rory in Marquesas, I forget. Of course, that season was set up explicitly to be sexist, so that's a strike against them. I also don't think Survivor to this day ever really intentionally casts athletic women. Sometimes it happens by accident (Amber, Parvati, Amanda, Andrea) but it's never seemed like a goal. I do think they did a fair job early on with age.

What I was referring to was TAR's inability its first several years to cast teams of color, or older teams, or two-women teams who were athletic. They had no problem casting young, white, two-men teams that were interesting, or even young, white, male-female teams that were interesting.


I think they did OK in the first three seasons:

TAR1
Frank and Margarita were a fascinating team, and she was awesome.
Guido was 50 and 47 at the first race, and that's a super diverse team selection, especially at the time. Not just gay dudes, but older gay dudes? Who toasted evil? Come on!
I think Momily was actually fairly well built for the race, just not for killer fatigue and India in that specific combination.
Dave and Margaretta were awesome.
Kevin and Drew were mid 30s when they ran it, if you want to stretch definitions slightly.

TAR2
Shola and Doyin had a bunch of bad luck, but from a casting perspective, that's a team you expect can win
Mary (of & Peach) in particular brought a lot to the table and was a damn good athlete
Oswald and Dany yes are pretty stereotypically gay, but they're not stereotypically Cuban/Latino. Also kickass racers.

TAR3
Teri and Ian represent the parental group fairly well, as much as I didn't like them here (liked them a lot in All-Stars though)
Ken was 40, Gerard 35 (and again: Ken is gay; TAR had a ridiculous amount of gay success early in its history [not that Survivor didn't obviously Mr. Hatch])
Race-wise, two all black teams, neither did all that great. Though Tramel is a huge nerd, which is not the usual African American presented on TV narrative) Firecop is maybe someone you think could have contended, if someone could have navigated.

And then it does get rough, not recovering until... season 10? I mean, they certainly tried there. Results were mixed, but that's one of the more intriguing on paper casts they ever put together. You even have the show's first dominant FF team.

Honestly, I think both shows had serious casting issues after their initial couple seasons. Survivor 3 - 7 are kind of wastelands in this regard, much like TAR 4 - 9.
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#1465

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Posted Aug 4, 2012 @ 2:02 AM

Probst promotes talk show, explains why Survivor will have cast members coming back "as often as possible." Once again: I think that Probst believes that this is shit that we would want, when that is clearly not the case. Or maybe he'll be bugging Mark Burnett to bring Russell back as often as possible until he gets the $1 millions he thinks the little man clearly deserves. Have I mentioned how happy I am that he got snubbed for a Best Host nomination?
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#1466

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Posted Aug 4, 2012 @ 1:03 PM

I can't really disagree with him. While the subject of returnees usually generates mixed to negative reviews from the forum crowds, I think he's probably correct that the non-internet, still-sees-this-show-as-watercooler-material viewers probably love seeing returning players again and again. Especially when, understandably, most play better when they come back.

Edited by Unconditional, Aug 4, 2012 @ 1:04 PM.

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#1467

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Posted Aug 16, 2012 @ 8:48 AM

His claim that it's fair to new contestants is preposterous. Of the 4 returnees, one had a fix-is-in win, one made FTC, and one made F4 thanks entirely due to the save-our-stars Redemption Island bullshit. Only Hantz was voted out early.

Last season was far more enjoyable to me than either of the previous 2, and if Survivor is going the way of the 2 RI seasons again, I will be gone.

BTW and speaking of Colton (and sorry if it's been mentioned elsewhere), wasn't it Mayim Bialik who stood up at the reunion and defended Colton? A few weeks ago she appeared on Good Afternoon America and claimed that she had never watched a single episode of reality TV. So either she is full of crap, or she was a plant at the reunion.

Edited by SpeciousLogic, Aug 16, 2012 @ 8:54 AM.

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#1468

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Posted Aug 16, 2012 @ 12:43 PM

wasn't it Mayim Bialik who stood up at the reunion and defended Colton? A few weeks ago she appeared on Good Afternoon America and claimed that she had never watched a single episode of reality TV. So either she is full of crap, or she was a plant at the reunion.


Just to play devil's advocate, I don't consider Survivor to be reality TV show - it's a game show. For me, "reality TV" is "watch people hang out and do nothing in particular" - Jersey Shore, the Kardashians, what have you. So it's possible to be a Survivor fan and say you've never watched an episode of reality TV.

On the other hand...CBS TV star shows up to defend controversial CBS TV personality? My money's on plant.
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#1469

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Posted Aug 16, 2012 @ 1:44 PM

Just to play devil's advocate, I don't consider Survivor to be reality TV show - it's a game show. For me, "reality TV" is "watch people hang out and do nothing in particular" - Jersey Shore, the Kardashians, what have you. So it's possible to be a Survivor fan and say you've never watched an episode of reality TV.


I'll have to disagree with the Devil's Advocate here. There is an entire category on TWOP forums called "Competitive Reality Shows" full of "game shows" like Masterchef, The Glass House, Love in the Wild -- most of them are just newer/less popular versions of shows that have their own forum (HK/TC, BB, The Bachelor respectively). Survivor would fall squarely into this category if it didn't have its own forum. A competitive reality show is still a reality show, just a different genre than Jersey Shore, etc. (BTW, I don't watch any reality show that isn't a competitive reality show, so by your definition I've never watched a reality show, either).

And I won't be watching any version of this particular competitive reality show that features Colton, at least not until he's gone.
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#1470

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Posted Aug 16, 2012 @ 7:45 PM

How TWOP categorizes television shows may not necessarily match up with how Mayim Bialik categorizes television shows. For the record, I agree with you that Survivor is a reality game show, but her statement doesn't automatically lead me to believe she doesn't watch Survivor, even if I think most television networks are perfectly capable of enlisting a plant to suit their own purposes.
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