There seems to be some whispers circulating that Survivor will air on a different network in Australia, with Channel 9 losing it’s 13 year grip on the reality juggernaut. If the whispers turn out to be true, it could also mean another Australian version of the show is around the corner.
Since the finale of Caramoan, Channel 9 and it’s digital channel Go have remained tight lipped on an airdate for the 27th season of Blood vs Water. Caramoan was screened only hours after it aired in the States in Australia, making it the first ever time a season of Survivor was aired the same day here as it was in the US. But with that announcement made directly after the finale of Philippines, many people have questioned why Nine and Go have been so quiet on the matter given the success Caramoan had here with it’s fast tracked screening. Silence doesn’t necessarily confirm the network has lost the rights, with previous seasons sometimes shown weeks and months after they have finished airing in the States. However it’s curious to know why things have been so quiet after being so quick with season 26.
Some sources are indicating that Nine is set to let go of the show, with a new network expected to pick up the rights for season 27 and beyond. This would indicate a battle between the two other commercial networks of Seven and Ten, both of whom could always offset the show to it’s digital channels like Nine did to Go last season. It could however also mean potentially the show could be shifted to pay TV should a free to air network not be interested in picking it up.
Of course with any new network deal for the show, it would more than likely bring a possibility of another local version of Survivor. A contract to air Survivor in the past has meant that the network must also produce a local version of the show, as Nine did with the ill-fated Australian Survivor back in 2002. It only lasted for one season, with many fans disappointed in the season that had such high hopes with the success of the US version. A ‘celebrity’ version (and we use the word celebrity very loosely) aired in 2006 on Channel 7 and was slightly better received than it’s predecessor. With many old reality shows being ‘rebooted’ in the last few years with Australian versions (The Amazing Race, Big Brother, The Mole, The X-Factor, The Apprentice) it doesn’t seem impossible that whichever network picks up the rights to Survivor, that they too would then bring back a local version, giving long suffering Australian fans of the show a chance to try their skills at the game they love.
None of this has been confirmed of course, but with the premiere of Blood vs Water just over a month away, something should be announced and confirmed in the coming weeks. Personally I think it would be great for a new network to try their hand at the show if it means that they will keep up with what Go did with Caramoan and give the Australian fans a fast tracked screening. A local version of the show would also be fantastic, as there seems to be so much to work with given the failures and mistakes of the Aussie version in 2002. It would also be great to see any new network perhaps picking up the rights to previous seasons and maybe showing classic episodes across it’s digital channels for Australian fans who might not have seen certain seasons in a while. It might also mean an airing of Marquesas in Australia finally…one can only hope.