Brad shares the best bonus scenes from the previous episodes of Survivor 42.
Wow, it has been a while. A year and ten months, apparently. Just for context, there used to be a lot more to the process of writing these posts. There was at least an hour of content to sift through, then an hour more of writing and editing the post. Now, we’re lucky if we get six minutes of content per week. The lack of material to work with, difficulty in sourcing embeddable clips, and the year-long broadcast hiatus were other factors that contributed to this long break. But the Bonus Content posts are being revived, now scheduled for a bi-weekly basis (which is not the same as a semi-weekly basis, let’s be clear).
Let’s get to it.
This Week In Secret Scenes
”And He’s So Tall!”
This scene occurs on Day 1 right after the Taku (orange) tribe arrives at camp, as they are making their introductions. There isn’t much to this scene aside from the fact that you get a sense of the immediate connection between Lindsay and Jonathan and to a lesser degree Omar—though of course, the Jonathan/Omar connection got flushed out more the following week. So far, there does not seem to be a trio that is quite as close as these three, meaning that if Taku can stay away from Tribal for a few more weeks, they could move into the merge in a solid position despite not “having the numbers” in the traditional sense.
Also, Maryanne’s first season was David Vs. Goliath. While it’s chronologically impossible for her to have first watched this on Netflix (the season was filmed six months before S37 was available on Netflix), we are rapidly approaching the age where some self-labelled superfans had not seen the show a year prior to being cast. Having “watched every season” no longer means that they’ve been watching since the year 2000!
”This Is The Area”
This scene also happens at the Taku camp on Day 1, and based on what we know from the original broadcast, this has to have occurred before Jackson came out to his tribe.
Jackson coming out on Day 1 is powerful, but I don’t love the “I’m doing this so that there’s no deception” angle that he set up with. Just wondering if the wording was BECAUSE of ****** or just a coincidence#Survivor #SurvivorPRP
— Brad (@PurpleRockBrad) March 10, 2022
I said at the time that Jackson coming out with the specific angle of “avoiding deception” hit too close to one of the worst moments in the show’s history. It’s worth going back to revisit the contemporaneous reaction to what happened in Season 34. Frankly, I’m still not crazy about Jackson’s framing since the context of this specific scene is absent from the original text of the episode.
I will note though that Jackson surely knew he was screwed as soon as he made eye contact with Jonathan. Both Jackson and Tori knew better than to wander off alone on Day 1, yet both did it and became easy targets for their tribunates. The difference is that Jackson got caught and then needed to immediately pivot to save himself. Jackson would have been the first boot had he not been lifted from the game, and Jackson knew it. In this context, “sorry I’m such a sneaky idol snake, let me share something personal with you” makes a little more sense.
A real shame that he walked right over the idol though. Sometimes the smash cut to the location of the idol is worse than the dodo music.
”Bring Your Flint With You”
Hai was my immediate favorite on this season. The reasons for this should be obvious unless you’re new here and have no idea who I am or what I’m about. Whenever Hai’s not on screen, I find myself asking, “Where’s Hai?”
The actual substance of this clip is the reminder that these castaways have absolutely no idea what curveballs the show is about to throw at them. They’re aware that there isn’t any rice, but it’s completely off their radar that Jeff might take away their flint. The idea that you’d have to bring your flint to participate in a Day 3 fire-making challenge (as opposed to just using a new flint for the challenge) doesn’t quite scan to me. But it just goes to show that the new realities of the show were entirely unimaginable.
The other thing in this clip worth pointing out is that Daniel is still worried about his shoulder. His current tribe’s roster will allow him to avoid directly addressing this issue, but now I’m curious to see a swap that results in Daniel, Romeo, Omar, and Jenny on the same tribe.
”The Lizards Are Done. Well-Done.”
I really only have three thoughts about this scene.
The mud on Tori’s stomach looked like a bad tattoo at first glance. I would find Tori a much more compelling character if she had such a bold visual indicator of bad judgement, but alas.
I love the juxtaposition between the phrase “I won’t hurt you” and someone wildly swinging a machete.
Are lizards safe to eat? My first thought went to the origins of the COVID pandemic, but like, even contestants on Top Chef have been chewed out for not fully cooking wild-caught salmon.
”I’ve Heard Of Cher”
I obviously want to get to the meat of this scene, but let’s just stop and savor the fact that Swati, a Harvard student, was trying to open a coconut with the dull side of a machete.
Anyways, to summarize Swati’s musical awareness:
She has not heard of Missy Elliot, Aerosmith, and Luther Vandross.
She has heard of Cher, Celine Dion, and N Sync.
She knows who Mariah Carey is.
Her mom “used to listen” to the Backstreet Boys.
Let’s take these in order.
It’s entirely understandable that Swati, at age 19, does not know who Luther Vandross is. It’s ridiculous to expect otherwise. While Aerosmith is big enough that you’d hope Swati was aware of them, I’m not surprised the way I would be if she said she had never heard of Led Zeppelin or AC/DC. I think it is fair to call out the blindspot of Missy Elliot given that her music and influence have been longer-lasting than the other two acts, but you could also chalk that up to a cultural disconnect.
In addition, it’s not entirely crazy that Swati “has just heard” of Cher. Sure, it may make you, the viewer, feel old. But go find a Zoomer you know and ask them to name two Cher songs. You’re lucky if you get “If I Could Turn Back Time.”
Just to note, I have a quote book of things that my students have said in class; for example, “I trained my sneezes to be more dry.” One quote was “Who’s Cher?” and I was disappointed in the moment but not outraged. I shared the quote with a class the following year and was absolutely numbed to the follow-up question “But who is Cher?”
Back to Swati. When she says that she knows Mariah Carey, I am very curious if her frame of reference is Emotions and Daydream or the annual re-charting of “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”
Also, the Backstreet Boys became superstars in the late ’90s. Swati was born in 2001. It is not crazy for Swati to say, “my mom used to listen to them.”
Listen, everyone ages, and this is just one of the markers. Your back hurts right as you wake up. Your new co-worker was born the same year you graduated high school. You can’t figure out how to use this new feature on your phone. You’re playing the music that makes you feel young again, and then someone says “my mom used to listen to them.” It’s the circle of life.
I have no notes here except for the fact that it’s mildly ironic that Taku practiced their system and still lost. If I had to critique them, it would be that they practiced walking around a wide-open area with little to no urgency. Start running through the jungle blindfolded if you’re serious about your preparation!
Note: we realize that international viewers will not be able to view these clips. If you know of any clips available to international audiences, feel free to share links in comments.
Brad has watched every season live but was too young to remember the first ten seasons (and is only saying that to make you all feel bad). He treats Wednesday nights like a religious observance and wonders if he can finagle that into a tax benefit.
Favorite Seasons: Winners At War, Heroes vs. Villains, Cagayan, Cambodia, Micronesia