This season, we’ve got a big surprise for you: Survivor host Jeff Probst will be stopping by each week to give us his thoughts on the show and the players.
This blog post is definitely written by Jeff Probst, host of Survivor, and not that guy who wrote the People’s Survivor blog posts last season. It is most certainly not a parody, but if it were it would probably have been written by John. You can follow John on Twitter @purplerockjohn or @purplerockpod. And you can follow me, Jeff Probst, on twitter @jeffprobst.
Let’s start with the stuff you all want to hear about: the part where people almost died for some salt and pepper. I’ve been catching a lot of heat for that challenge this week, and I want to defend myself here.
First of all, that salt is incredibly valuable. The players need the salt to replenish all of the salt they lost while sweating their asses off at that challenge where some of them almost died. And sure, maybe coffee isn’t the best thing for some people that are crying because their internal organs are boiling, but they might need that caffeine to kickstart their hearts later due to the lingering effects of the cardiovascular trauma from this challenge.
So enough about how that reward wasn’t worth it, ok? What did you want us to do, offer them a bag of ice? Even if we did, it would’ve melted before I even asked them if it was worth playing for. The heat even melted a football back at Ponderosa.
I also won’t accept that we screwed up or didn’t do enough to keep these players safe. We have a challenge to run and a TV show to make; it’s not our job to babysit them. Besides, how could we know that relentless exertion in extreme heat and humidity could have negative health effects?
The players made a lot of mistakes themselves. Look at Caleb in that picture. He’s wearing a shirt around his head, trapping the heat in- just a stupid decision on his part. But if he was feeling too hot at any point, he could have consumed some of the half-pint of room temperature water that players bring with them to challenges. And yes, in this case, the room temperature is 120° American (49° on the Socialist temperature scale). It may feel like you’re drinking straight from the water heater, but it’s not like you don’t have any water at all. Plus, the water was so hot it probably killed at least 25% of the pathogens in it.
What happened in this challenge is that Caleb pushed himself too far. He just gave it 100%. In fact, that’s exactly what you saw me telling him: “You pushed it as hard as you could. It took a toll. You’re a warrior, dude. I’m glad you were out here.” And I showed the same respect to Cydney, who gave 90-95% out there; I gave her the good news that medical was right next door, taking care of Caleb. So all of you people that think I favor the men over the women can shut the fuck up.
I’ve also gotten some criticism about not allowing Peter to help. But who do you think Cydney would rather have helping her in that situation- a bounty hunter she’s known for 12 days or an emergency room physician? Almost dying while playing island skeeball is a scary, emotional event. Players need the calm, reassuring voice of a trained television host, not some bullshit Peter learned over multiple years of classes and medical residency. Besides, Peter is an ER doctor in Minnesota- what the fuck does he know about heat stroke? Probably as little as I do!
At this point, I want to reassure all of you just like I reassured Cydney in Cambodia: Caleb is doing fine. In fact, he’s getting ready for us to bring him back as soon as possible. I’ve always told the players that if they ever want to be guaranteed a returnee spot on Survivor, they just have to almost die in my arms. And Caleb delivered.
While Caleb was giving it 100% in that challenge, Alecia was definitely showing off some Kat-like instincts. But when Scot and Jason went in on her later for it, Alecia didn’t just lay down and take it. That’s why she was put on the Brawn tribe- she’s got a strong personality (this is something I learned from the Survivor social media interns- words don’t actually mean anything anymore).
Alecia didn’t let the rest of her tribe have a tribal council right there on the beach after the challenge, because Alecia is a fighter. She’s just a really weak fighter, like that guy Glass Joe in those old Nintendo Punch-Out games. Remember those?
Still, I didn’t waste much time on that tribal council because it was mostly for show. Even at the immunity challenge, they were having Alecia do the puzzle on her own because they didn’t really want to win.
If they did want to win, maybe the Brawn tribe could’ve used Debbie. Remember, in the first episode of this season Debbie told us that puzzles lay down for her like lovers. But if this puzzle was any indication, her lovers require someone else tagging in to finish the job.
One last thing before I wrap things up for this week. I mentioned early on that Fishbach and John liked to hand out awards every week, and that I’m not one of those people that just hands out trophies like candy on Halloween. If you want a trophy from me, you’ve really gotta earn it. You’ve got to give it 100%. And this week, we finally saw someone give it 100%. So I’m giving out my very first Probsty to the only player so far that has truly exemplified what I look for in a Survivor: Caleb. Enjoy it, big guy! See you again in a season or two!
Favorite seasons: Heroes vs. Villains, Cagayan, Pearl Islands, Tocantins, Cambodia