Purple Rock Podcast Presents: The 40 Most Influential Survivors

Welcome to the next major Purple Rock Podcast event. To celebrate the 40th season of Survivor, we’re counting down the 40 Most Influential Survivors to ever play the game.

The PRP staff chose 40 players from the first 38 seasons of the show based on their influence on how the game is played, how the show is made, and how fans engage with the product as a whole. These are the elements that make Survivor the experience it is, and these are the players that most shaped those elements. Here’s how it will work:

  • Each of the 40 Influential Survivors will be profiled in a single post.
  • The list is unranked, presented in chronological order of the first season a player appeared on. So if a season goes by and someone you think should have been mentioned isn’t, that’s when you know they’ve been snubbed. That’s when it’s time to complain.
  • While the true author of many moments in Survivor history is disputed by fans and former contestants, influence leans on who those moves are accredited to in the edit. As much as some might hope differently, post-game interviews, unconfirmed rumors, and AMAs can only be so influential. Probably less than the stuff actually on the show.
  • It’s possible for someone to be influential without being “great” or “popular”. It’s possible for someone to be “great” or “popular” without them being influential.
  • The first person to do a thing might not necessarily be the most influential. Sometimes it takes a different person to really be an influence, even if they weren’t the original.
  • Not every season will be represented and there was no attempt made to try.
  • Some players will be influential for many reasons; some for just one.
  • Not all influence is good influence.
  • Influence doesn’t necessarily have to be lasting influence. Players who were heavily influential in an earlier era are eligible even if their influence is less felt today.
  • Only players were considered, not other people associated Survivor, but their influence was not limited to their time as players.
  • We decided to not include anyone from season 39 because there hasn’t been any time to see what their influence might be on the show going forward.
  • There will multiple posts a week until we get to the end of the list. Which might be after season 40 ends because we procrastinated all off season on whether or not we were going to do this.
  • Oh my god, are we really going to write 40 of these? What did we get ourselves into.