Another season of Survivor is right around the corner and with it, comes a brand spanking new cast! Join our resident recap expert, Ozlet Jarryd, as he walks you through the twenty castaways competing on Survivor: Blood vs. Water and talks through all the news twists!
UPDATE: Now updated with cast analysis and opinions from Ben, Jarryd & the Ozlets plus the Survivor Oz Blood vs Water Preview Episode!
So Survivor twenty-seven, Blood vs. Water is right around the corner. Which means three things. One, you get bombarded with material about the new season. Two, Jeff speaks about how fantastic the new season will be, and three, I’m back to bring you everything you need to know about Survivor: Blood vs. Water from start until finish!
Whilst a cast reveal always brings about excitement, you’ll have to lay off the red cordial and jelly beans for a bit longer. Blood vs. Water doesn’t premiere until Wednesday, September 18th, (Thursday the 19th for us Aussies), and will do so with a special ninety minute episode, (Just like Philippines and Caramoan).
However, after months of rumours and potential information about the new season, CBS has finally released information about the cast and about some game changing twists that we’ll see this season.
First of all, as we all suspected since about three minutes after the Caramoan finale finished airing, Survivor: Blood vs. Water will incorporate returning players playing WITH a loved one. This complete changes the way we have seen Survivor since Day One in Borneo, so it should make for an interesting twist.
The Galang and Tadhana Buffs
You might have noticed I clearly said the returnees will be playing WITH their family member and not alongside them. That’s important because at first the tribes will be separated into returning players and family members. The returnees will be the Galang, (Filipino for respect), tribe and will wear YELLOW Buffs, whilst their family members will comprise the Tadhana, (destiny), and will wear RED.
But the big question is… “Who is returning?”
GERVASE PETERSON – (BORNEO)
with his niece MARISSA PETERSON
Gervase: 43, Coach and Club owner from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Survivor: Borneo, finished in 7th place and was the 3rd Jury member.
Marissa: 21, Student form Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Gervase originally competed in Survivor’s first ever season of Borneo and after twenty-six seasons he is back again to play for the second time! It’s unreal to think that after all these years, production has invited Gervase back again. In Borneo, Gervase was part of the Pagong tribe before becoming part of the Rattana tribe at the Merge. Unfortunately, he was part of the infamous “Pagonging” of his tribe at the hands of Tagi. However, he did succeed in winning both an Individual Reward and Immunity Challenge before he was voted out in seventh place. Gervase holds an interesting record in Survivor history as the first person on the show to eat a cooked rat, describing the taste as “good”.
Coming back after such a long time out of the game will be difficult for Gervase. Since Borneo, we have seen the introduction of an assortment of different twists and advancements in game play, which Gervase will need to adapt to in order to be successful. However, the only other returning player to return after a period of twenty seasons was Michael Skupin, (Philippines), and he finished in equal second place, so that can only mean good news for Gervase!
Gervase is playing with his twenty-one year old niece Marissa Peterson. Marissa describes herself as outgoing and adventurous and likens herself to Parvati Shallow. Marissa watched Gervase compete on the show when she was in the fourth grade.
To download Gervase’s Survivor Oz Interview, click here
Tina Wesson – (The Australian Outback & All-Stars)
with her daughter KATIE COLLINS
Tina: 52, Nurse from Robbinsville, North Carolina.
Survivor: The Australian Outback winner and Survivor: All-Stars, finished in 18th place
Katie: 25, Hedge fund support worker from New York, N.Y.
Tina was the first female winner after beating Colby Donaldson in Survivor: The Australian Outback. Part of the Okagor tribe, she aligned with Colby early in the game and the pair went all the way to the end together. In an often criticized move, Colby decided to stay loyal to Tina by taking her with him to the Final Tribal Council where she went on to beat him in a four-three vote. She returned three years later for Survivor: All-Stars where she was part of the Saboga tribe. Unfortunately, after her tribe lost the first challenge she was voted out in eighteenth place because she was a former winner.
Ten years on Tina returns to play for a third time. At fifty-two, Tina fills the “older women role” on this season. Tina played a strong social game in her previous outings which will be important for her again considering she will be low down on the “strength list” on her tribe. Like Gervase, the game has evolved drastically since Tina last played so it will be intriguing to see how she can change her strategy to suit the game play we see today.
Remember: Rupert had a hand in Tina being the first boot of Survivor: All-Stars.
Tina is playing with her twenty-five year old daughter Katie Collins. Katie once raised thousands of dollars for the American Lung Association for climbing fifty-five flights of stairs. She likens herself to her mother and Survivor: South Pacific Jury member, Whitney Duncan.
To download Tina’s Survivor Oz Interview, click here
RUPERT BONEHAM – (Pearl Islands, All-Stars and Heroes vs. Villains)
with his wife LAURA BONEHAM
Rupert: 49, Mentor and Politician from Indianapolis, Indiana.
Survivor: Pearl Islands, finished in 8th place and was the 2nd Jury member. Survivor: All-Stars, finished in fourth place and was the 6th Jury member, won one million dollar Fan Favourite Award. Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains, finished in 6th place and was the 7th Jury member.
Laura: 44, Merchandiser from Indianapolis, Indiana.
Yep, the famous pirate from Pearl Islands, All-Stars and Heroes vs. Villains returns as the shows second four time player… and as Ben would say, that means he would be the odds on favourite to take this season out considering four time players always win Survivor. Whether or not that holds true remains to be seen, however Rupert will still be a big threat this season. Despite a poor physical game in Heroes vs. Villains, (in fairness he did have broken toes for the entire season), Rupert will be a big physical threat once again, whilst also posing as a social threat because he is well liked.
His strategic game has always been a downfall of his across his previous three seasons so whether he has learnt from the past will determine his future this season. Rupert needs to drop the “hero” stereotype this season in order to make the Final Tribal Council. In his previous three seasons, he has been portrayed as the hero and to be successful in Survivor you need to be able to be both a hero and a villain. If Rupert can make this improvement in his game, he will be a threat once again this season.
Remember: Rupert had a hand in voting Tina out of All-Stars and didn’t see eye to eye with Candice in Heroes vs. Villains.
Rupert is playing with his wife Laura Boneham. Laura appeared in the loved one visits in all three of Rupert’s previous seasons and states that its a dream come true to be able to play the game with ehr husband.
To download Rupert’s Survivor Oz Interview, click here
ARAS BASKAUSKAS – (Panama)
with his brother VYTAS BASKKAUSKAS
Aras: 31, Yoga Instructor and Musician from Santa Monica, California.
Survivor: Panama winner.
Vytas: 33, Yoga Instructor/Math Professor from Santa Monica, California.
Aras was the winner of the twelfth season, Survivor: Panama. Aras’ win is often deemed in the “middle of the road” category so it will be interested to see whether he is a better player than people believe him to be this time around. In Panama, Aras was part of the younger men tribe, (Viveros), before joining Casaya after the Tribe Absorption. There, he teamed up with Bruce, Cirie, Courtney, Danielle and Shane. A fierce competitor, Aras had a strong rivalry with fan favourite Terry Dietz during the season. Despite Aras losing multiple challenges to Terry, Aras’ alliance held true and he found himself sitting next to Danielle at the Final Tribal Council after she voted Terry out in third place. Aras would go onto win in a five-two vote.
Aras will be a fascinating player to watch this season. Being a former winner, he is bound to draw some attention. Who he aligns with will be a big talking point. Will be align with an older woman again like he did with Cirie? Will he have a fierce rivalry with somebody like Rupert or Tyson? Will he win the younger women over due to his sex appeal? I think Aras is one of the players to watch this season. He’s either going to deliver, or leave fans questioning whether he really was as good as the Jury perceived him in Panama.
Aras is playing with with brother Vytas Baskauskas. Vytas has beaten a heroin addiction, can’t stand stupidity and show-offs and likens himself to a combination of his brother, Jonathan Penner and Parvati Shallow.
To download Aras’ Survivor Oz Interview, click here
CANDICE CODY (née WOODCOCK) – (Cook Islands & Heroes vs. Villains)
with her husband JOHN CODY.
Candice: 30, Doctor from Washington, D.C.
Survivor: Cook Islands, finished in 8th place and 5th Jury member. Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains, finished in 8th place and was the 5th Jury member.
John: 30, Physician, Army Orthopedic Surgery Resident, Washington, D.C.
Candice Cody, (nee Woodcock), returns for her third occasion. There’s no denying Candice is far from the most popular contestant to appear on Survivor, with questioning her spot on Heroes vs. Villains.
However, Candice does have the results to back it up. She’s finished in 8th place twice, meaning she’s also made the Jury twice. In the Cook Islands, she was the first castaway to ever Mutiny against her tribe when she decided to re-join Rarotonga. The move didn’t work so well for her as she become a victim of the Aitu Four’s rein of power. In Heroes vs. Villains, Candice was a member of the Heroes tribe and seen as the swing vote for a majority of the pre-merge game. After the Villains took control after the Merge, Candice briefly joined them to vote off her former tribe members before the Villains turned on her.
Despite Candice not displaying a great social game on screen, she has proven herself physically and has enough sense to know who to play the game. She isn’t a big threat, she hasn’t made power moves and doesn’t have any powerful enemies in the game, meaning she’s a good person to align with. After playing on the outs most of the game in Heroes vs. Villains, she needs to establish a strong early alliance.
Remember: Candice turned against Rupert to save herself in Heroes vs. Villains.
Candice is playing with her husband John Cody. John has a high work ethic, is highly competitive and can’t wait for the opportunity to challenge himself against his wife. He likens himself to other doctors to appear on the show, Marcus, (Gabon) and Mick, (Samoa), but believes he also relates to Boston Rob.
TYSON APOSTEL – (Tocantins & Heroes vs. Villains)
with his girlfriend RACHEL FOULGER
Tyson: 34, Cyclist from Provo, Utah.
Survivor: Tocantins, finished in 9th place and was the 2nd Jury member. Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains, finished in 15th place.
Rachel: 33, Cocktail waitress and graphic designer from Provo, Utah.
Tyson Apostol from Survivor: Tocantins and Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains returns to play for his third time. In his first season, Tyson was part of the Timbira tribe and formed close bonds with Coach and Debbie, whilst he had a brutal relationship with Sierra. A huge physical threat, Tyson also charmed people with his eccentric personality. However, after the Merge, his strength was recognised by Jalapao and he was blindsided. Tyson returned as a Villain in the twentieth season and aligned himself with Boston Rob against “evil Russell”. Unfortunately for Tyson, Russell was able to outsmart him by convincing him he was on his side and to scrap Rob’s split votes plan, so that he could vote out Parvati. In the ensuring Tribal Council, Russell’s true colours were revealed and Tyson was on the end of a cruel blindside.
This season will be an interesting one for Tyson. His name was questioned when he returned for Heroes vs. Villains by some fans and returning again is bound to cause some controversy. Like Rupert, Tyson is a big personality and a big threat this season. He’ll need to find himself in a strong alliance early otherwise he could be taken out due to his physical game. Whether he can live up to the “three time player” label is yet to be seen and he’ll need to play a strong game in order for him to be spoken about with the likes of fellow three times players Parvati Shallow and Coach Wade.
Tyson is playing with his girlfriend Rachel Foulger. Rachel is playing the game for the money and the challenge, she states that Tyson is her rock so she may struggle being on a separate tribe from him.
LAURA MORETT – (Samoa)
with her daughter CIERA EASTIN
Laura: 43, Office manager and fitness instructor from Salem, Oregon.
Survivor: Samoa, finished in 10th place and was the 3rd Jury Member
Ciera: 24, Hedge fund support worker from Salem, Oregon.
The outspoken grandmother from Survivor: Samoa, Laura is a surprise returnee after she spoke out heavily against Production after Samoa for fixing the game in Russell Hantz’s favour. Part of the Galu tribe, Laura served as a motherly figure for fellow alliance members Kelly and Monica, was more than capable in challenges and found herself in a heated animosity with tribe mate Shambo, (Shannon Waters). Going into the Merge with majority, (eight-four), against Foa Foa, Laura was part of the collapse of Galu which saw the Foa Foa Four, turn the game back in their favour by getting Galu to turn on each other and using the power of the Hidden Immunity Idol. Since Samoa, Laura has made her view on her season and Russell well known and therefore it is surprising that CBS and Production have given her the green light to return.
Laura is one to keep on eye on this season. She played a competent physical and social game in Samoa yet her strategic game imploded at the Merge. Similar to Corinne, she makes her feelings known, meaning if she gets on the wrong side on the majority of her tribe early on, there isn’t much hope for Laura, (unless she is carried through the game as a goat). She is similar to Monica in various aspects, (age, physical ability), which could mean there is only room for one of them on the Galang tribe.
Laura is playing with her daughter Ciera. Ciera had a child at seventeen and is most proud of finishing high school and of her husband and children. Ciera beleives despite being the cute, young girl, she’ll be ten steps ahead of everyone when it comes to game play.
To download Laura’s Survivor Oz Interview, click here
MONICA CULPEPPER – (One World)
with her husband BRAD CULPEPPER
Monica: 42, Homemaker from Tampa Bay, Florida.
Survivor: One World, finished in 14th place.
Brad: 44, Former NFL Player from Tampa Bay Florida.
Monica is easily the biggest “eyebrow raiser” from this batch of returnees. Her time on One World was limited, as she finished in fourteenth place, only surviving until Day Fourteen after being blindsided. After initially being an outcast on the all-female Salani tribe, Monica became a member of the Manono tribe after the Tribe Switch on Day Twelve. Whilst some would argue that the Tribe Switch hindered her ability to move forward in the game, it can also be argued that she did deserve to remain in the game after proving she was the strongest physical player on a tribe that lacked physical ability. However, a big part in casting is Jeff Probst who Monica revealed spoke to her about his disappointment to see her go shortly after she was voted out; perhaps the decision to bring Monica back was because of heavy input from Probst? In saying that, she also has a very famous husband, Brad Culpepper – A one hundred and thirty-three game NFL veteran.
As mentioned above, Monica shares similar characteristic with Laura. Whilst Monica doesn’t have as much Survivor experience as the other returnees, I think she has a lot to offer a tribe and an alliance. She’s physical, is likable enough but her strategy needs some work. However, the big obstacle in her footpath is her husband’s fame. Will a Jury want to vote for either of them to win a million dollars when they are clearly already well off due to her husband pro-ball career?
Remember: Colton was the reason Monica was sent home and she wasn’t apart of the majority female alliance that Kat was apart of.
Monica is playing with her husband Brad Culpepper. Brad is a former NFL player who is now an Attorney. He loves the outdoors, likening himself to Colby and Ozzy and his reason for being on the show is to redeem Monica for being blindsided by Colton. He also states that he will always put her first in the game.
To download Monica’s Survivor Oz Interview, click here
COLTON CUMBIE – (One World)
with his fiancé CALEB BANKSTON
Colton: 22, Student from Collinsville, Alabama
Survivor: One World, finished in 13th place after being medically evacuated.
Caleb: 26, Post Office manager and farmer from Collinsville, Alabama.
Regarded as one of the biggest villains to ever play the game after only lasting six episodes, Colton returns after to pick up where he left off after he was medically evacuated on Day Sixteen. In only sixteen days, (six episodes), Colton managed to create hysteria, as he went on to receive death threats after speaking his mind in One World. After feeling left out on the all-men Manono tribe, Colton was given a Hidden Immunity Idol which gave him a lot of power in the game. He managed to work his way into leadership of the “misfits alliance” with his power so strong he was able to convince an entire tribe to give up Immunity so that he could vote out nemesis Bill Posley.
Colton came under heavy fire for comments he made about Bill and Christina and their cultural backgrounds. Despite a severely awkward Reunion show for him, a young Colton has admitted he has grown immensely from the experience. A massive fan of the show, I doubt he’ll change the way he plays the game, just the way he goes about it.
Remember: Colton was the led figure that led to Monica being blindsided.
Colton is playing with his fiancé Caleb Bankston. Caleb loves the outdoors and describes himself has very hard working after growing up on a farm. Caleb says he is like J.T. (Tocantins & Heroes vs. Villains) and isn’t stupid because he talks slow. Caleb says that his and Colton’s relationship can withstand Survivor and that a major factor he decided to play was so that he could “show America what love likes like”.
To download Colton’s Survivor Oz Interview, click here
KAT EDORSSON – (One World)
with her boyfriend HAYDEN MOSS
Kat: 23, Timeshare Rep from Orlando, Florida.
Survivor: One World, finished in 7th place and was the 5th Jury member.
Hayden: 27, Real Estate Agent from Tempe, Arizona.
Kat was literally the “young cat” in Survivor: One World. After aligning on Day One with Alicia, Chelsea, Kim and Sabrina, Kat survived an early scare and went onto make the Merge. There she helped her alliance vote out the men on the way to an all female final five. However, Kat wasn’t apart of the final five, as she was blindsided, (after saying that she loved blindsides), by her alliance in seventh place after make several poor decisions, showing her lack of maturity and showing her strength in challenges. Kat took the betrayal hard but surprised many when she gave a very personal Jury speech discussing her medical issues and how not voting for Kim would mean she hadn’t learnt anything from the experience.
Remember: Monica wasn’t keen to see Kat saved instead of Nina and Kat didn’t include Monica as a member of the majority female Salani alliance.
Unfortunately, Kat won’t be playing with her crazy cousin who visited her as part of the family visit in One World but instead Big Brother 12 winner, Hayden Moss. Hayden believes that because he won Big Brother, he has some understand of how he can win Survivor. He will be a big threat, he’s athletic and confident and has already pocketed five hundred thousand dollars for winner Big Brother.
To download Colton’s Survivor Oz Interview, click here
What happens to the Game?
This season we are going to see some big game changing twists that are going to polarize fans. First off, the obvious one… this season features returning players, (the ninth season to do so), who will be competing against their loved ones.
This season will be the second to go for longer than thirty-nine days, (the first being The Australian Outback). This season, Mark Burnett has come up with the idea to get the castaways dirty before the game even begins! Therefore, Day Zero has been introduced. All twenty castaways will be sent to a different location with their loved one at sunset, the day prior to the game beginning, with the notion that they will be both placed in the same tribe. Everything will change the following morning when the game begins and the returnees and their loved ones are split up, returnees on one tribe, loved ones on the other.
Much like Survivor: Tocantins, straight after dividing the castaways into two tribes, a vote will be held, with one person from each tribe being voted off their tribe. BUT… they won’t be leaving the game…
That’s right, Redemption Island is back and it’s where the first impression vote out’s will go. Everyone who is voted out this season will go to Redemption Island and compete in a three person duel. The loser is officially eliminated whilst the other two stay on Redemption Island. The big twist for Redemption Island is that each pair of loved ones will have the opportunity to take their loved ones place on Redemption Island, with the pair swapping places – The person on Redemption Island will take their loved ones place on the tribe they are on, whilst the other person will replace their loved one on Redemption Island.
For example, if Laura Boneham is on Redemption Island up against John Cody and Hayden Moss and the duel is a strength challenge, Rupert can take Laura’s place in the duel. Rupert will take Laura’s place on Redemption Island and Laura will take Rupert’s place on his tribe. If successful, Rupert remains on Redemption Island, Laura remains on the tribe. If Rupert losses the challenge, he is eliminated and Laura stays on the tribe that Rupert was on. They can then do this again for any other duel. Confusing I know… but it will add a very strategic element to the game.
Hidden Immunity Idols
The winner of each Redemption Island Duel will get to give a clue to the location of a Hidden Immunity Idol to any other castaway in the game. The clue is essential to finding the Idol this season so giving away a clue will be a big decision for the castaway who wins it. Do they give it to a their loved one? A friend outside the game? As a favour to another castaway? It will also add a new aspect to the game that we don’t usually see until Individual Rewards come into play because it will force castaways to choose against each other.
With all these new twists coming into play we are bound to see a very different season of Survivor. However, they all are relevant the major twist this season, (castaways playing with loved ones), so don’t expect them all to stick around for future seasons and don’t right it off as stupid until you see it in action!
Finally, just three bits of trivia for you you ponder:
1. This is the longest consecutive streak of seasons to feature returning players, with three. – Have we seen the end of all new players?
2. It is the third season to feature players returning who didn’t make the Jury or Merge in their previous attempt/s. – How do you feel about lesser known castaways getting given second chances?
3. This is the first time winners will be playing with new players. – Is this fair? Will the winners be targeting first? How much of an advantage do the winners have?
Hopefully in four months time we can answer all these questions and more.
Am I the only Survivor fan on planet earth that is looking forward to this season?
Seriously, I think this season has so much potential that everyone is blinded by words such as ‘Redemption Island’ and ‘Rupert’ that they aren’t even giving it a chance. Think about what you’re about to see on your screens. 10 returning players who lets face it, are a very eclectic and diverse bunch. We’ve just had a season of 10 returning players who people spent weeks wondering why the majority of them were chosen, and then we saw valid and some invalid reasons for them coming back. But let me say the DIVERSE spread again of returning players. We have contestants that cover seasons 1, 2, 7, 8, 12, 13, 18, 19, 20 & 24. That’s even more diverse than what we saw on Heroes vs Villains yet people seem to be complaining about who we’re seeing again? I will give it out that there is one person that is deserving to be complained about, but I’ll get to that.
Then I see people not happy about the loved ones twist. So much potential for drama right there if you ask me. Think of the possibilities come the merge. We could have a dominant group of returning players on one tribe, a dominant group of family members on the other but when the merge comes they realise that their loved ones are hated by their alliance and so forth. DRAMA CENTRAL which is generally what Survivor is built on these days. Other positives too come from the twists. Redemption Island sure isn’t the best thing ever in the Survivor world, but this season it actually looks like it could work. Would people hate the concept so much if it worked? Maybe we’ll see this season. I for one am looking forward to a contestant sacrificing themselves for their loved one to return to the game and actually seeing just how that can affect the game. Never have we seen somebody actually able to decide on their own if a person can return back into the game by sacrificing themselves, and this I feel will bring an added boost to this already promising season.
I think a lot of people are jumping the gun too soon and aren’t even giving the season a chance. Too many times have I heard “I’m not watching this season” or “this isn’t Survivor, it’s a cheap knock off under the brand of Survivor”. A TV show in it’s 13th year and 27th season HAS to adapt. As much as I love classic, original Survivor, there is no way it would’ve lasted this long if it didn’t change things up once in a while. It doesn’t matter if it’s a singer, sport, TV show, movie or anything. Adaptation is key to thrive in the age it’s airing. TV is a different kettle of fish in 2013 to what it was in 2000. Survivor was a new concept 13 years ago so the idea of shoving 16 strangers on an island was so ground-breaking that things like ‘twists’ weren’t needed. You just needed a diverse cast, no food and a few challenges to draw the viewers in. But now in 2013 when there is more reality TV on than any other genre, it’s important to remain fresh and draw viewers in. It’s important to do that. This is just another attempt at staying fresh and it may work, it may not. I just think it’s ridiculous for so called ‘fans’ of the show to write it off so quickly.
That’s my piece, but looking at the season as a whole now. The cast is sure as hell interesting.
Aras & Vytas: I like Aras. I think he is a very underrated winner and I for one am glad he is back. He was a great social and physical player on Panama and thoroughly deserved to win. Would’ve been great to see him up against Terry on this season but Terry surely is due a return soon. His brother Vytas also looks the goods, and I see them both going very very far in this game. Aras and Tina will be close, and I doubt that many people will target them based solely on them winning a million dollars. There are too many other bigger threats personality wise and reputation wise in the game to see Aras being targeted for that reason alone. I think they could easily be pre-season favourites to win, and should both make final 5 easily. Predicted Finish: Both Final 5
Monica & Brad: What’s with all the One World hate? Three contestants from a season that I feel had one of the most entertaining casts of all time is warranted, and I for one am thrilled to see three of them back. Including Monica, I love Monica and think she was very unlucky and under edited first time around. I don’t think she will go after Colton as much as everyone seemingly is saying, as they were a lot closer out there and also outside of the show than people give them credit for. Brad though I think looks like he will be amazing. He was the only non-returning player in the pre-game videos I got a good vibe from, and going into this season not having a clue who he is in terms of his sporting endeavours (Australian here folks, not an NFL fan) I am looking forward to seeing him go far. I think they have the possibility of being split up at some point and maybe see Brad going further than Monica, but I can also see them going deep together or falling together early. Predicted Finish: Monica early jury, Brad Final 6
Colton & Caleb: I don’t care about the haters, I am a HUGE Colton fan. To me he was thoroughly deserving of the best pre-merge player in this years Ozcars and while people are generally clouded by some comments he made in a couple of episodes, he is always overlooked as to just how dominant of a player he was. I would LOVE to see him come out and do what he did in One World again, but I have a feeling it’s not going to work twice. His reputation will be enough to see him probably go early as much as I hate to say that, and when it comes to something like Redemption Island I think he will struggle a lot. Caleb is hard to read, as he really didn’t get to say much in his pre-game interview, but I’m sure he could last a while if his personality keeps him in check with the loved ones tribe. Predicted Finish: Colton pre-merge, Caleb early jury
Candice & John: Seriously. W….T….F! CANDICA AGAIN!?!? Don’t even get me started on this. Seriously. I got shit last season for being a ‘Brenda hater’, but let me just say that I would rather see Brenda play for a 10th time over Candice play for a third time. She has to be the most useless returning player in the history of Survivor and has NO redeeming qualities to return AT ALL. Surely her husband must be the reason she is brought back again right? Nope, he seems just as exciting and capable as his wife. RC if you read this I am devastated that your fathers health had to turn bad. I really do sincerely hope he is ok. But I am also devastated that it meant your place had to be taken by CANDICE! Ugh. Taking off the bias goggles, where will she finish? Well given she is probably only going to be known and remembered by Rupert, she’ll probably actually make it really far. It pains me to say that, but I don’t see anyone thinking of her as a threat until at least the merge. Geez, she might even bloody win the thing. If she does, then I may have to rethink hosting this show. Yup, my turn to judge the season before it’s even started. Predicted Finish: Both Final 5
Laura M & Ciera: I’m not the biggest Laura fan, and honestly I don’t see why she is being brought back. But I’m glad to see someone ‘different’ being given a go, and someone from Samoa who doesn’t have the name Russell. I think Laura certainly oversells herself in the game and gives herself a lot more credit than maybe she deserves, but I enjoy seeing players like that have a second chance to completely prove me wrong. And I want Laura to prove me wrong. Her daughter certainly is one beautiful individual but I think she will struggle given she couldn’t even get through a pre-game interview without crying about missing her family. She’ll definitely be the ‘Dawn’ of this season and bring out the waterworks, but all she needs is someone to cuddle her and she’ll be set. Don’t see them being targeted early on, unless Ciera misses home too much and finds it too hard to cope. Predicted Finish: Ciera just before the merge, Laura M early jury
Gervase & Marissa: I have never been this excited to see a returning player in the history of Survivor. EVER! Not even seeing Russell a second time or Colby & Jerri a third time. I love Gervase to pieces, the guy was my original ‘pony’ from the very first season of Borneo and the fact we get to see a Borneo contestant return after 26 seasons difference is nothing short of a miracle. His niece Marissa looks like she will struggle, and I hope she doesn’t as she is my ‘pony’ for this game (or at least the one I’ve paid for) so fingers crossed if she doesn’t make the final 3, she at least is the first boot! I for one have a bad feeling for Gervase though. Not necessarily going early, but he could get the ‘Erik edit’ this season. By that I mean he will go far, fly under the radar but get voted out just before the final tribal council and get a very crap edit. I hope that’s not the case as I for one think he had a very underrated social game in his first season. But this is season 27, not season 1, and the editing has changed a great deal. I just hope he can avoid eating bugs and making cow comments. I also think out of all the couples, both Gervase and Marissa are the most likely to stab each other in the back and not want to stay together the whole journey. Predicted Finish: Marissa early boot, Gervase final 5.
Kat & Hayden: Again, excited for a One World contestant to be back and excited to see Kat play again. You just KNEW she was going to return for a second shot (clearly she begged Probst enough) but I thought she would return with her kooky cousin who she crawled on her knees for. Instead we get Big Brother winner Hayden. Call me sceptical, but isn’t it a bit convenient that a Big Brother winner is dating a Survivor contestant just when this season idea comes about? I have never watched an episode of the US version of Big Brother in my life, so I have no idea what to expect from him, but I think the fact that he has a reputation as a winner of another reality show could put a target on his back just based on the social dynamics that Big Brother has compared to Survivor. I do see Kat going pretty deep though, as she is somebody that clicks with people and will be liked by most. I’m hoping for a Kat/Tyson alliance. Think of it people, think of it. Predicted Finish: Both early jury
Tina & Katie: Excited to see Tina again as we never got to see her show her stuff in All-Stars. She has the unique possibility of creating two pieces of history, as either being the 2nd person to be a two time first boot or the 2nd person to be a two time winner. I don’t see her being either to be honest, but I still think she will make it a lot further than she did on her 2nd go around. Katie I feel will also do well, but probably not as deep as others. This is one couple that I don’t see breaking apart at all, and a sacrifice could happen with these two. Predicted Finish: Both just before the jury
Tyson & Rachel: Behind Candice, Tyson is the person I’m least excited to see. Never been a big Tyson fan and honestly I think he is a pretty terrible player of the game. But he is entertaining and I can see why they brought him back. It’s about redemption for Tyson this season, and I think he will try his best to show that he is a good player and not just there for laughs. It’ll be the first time he has played a season without Coach, so it’ll be interesting to see how he copes without his dragon slayer buddy. Rachel looks a bit bland, and again hard to get a read on her when she didn’t say too much in the video before the game. She seems very much in love with Tyson (maybe a bit too much) based on her written profile, so I can see her sacrificing herself to save him. Will he do the same? Only time will tell. I see both possibly not going the whole length, and might just make the jury. Predicted Finish: Rachel early boot, Tyson just before the jury
Rupert & Laura B: I think as well as being the only person excited for this season, I’m also the only person excited to see Rupert back! I like Rupert, and I still say he is one of the most underrated players in the history of the game. Three times he has played, three times he has made the jury. Nobody else can claim that record (that hasn’t also finished in the final tribal council at some point) so to see him do well would be so great to see. Sadly though, I don’t see it happening a fourth time. I think Rupert will be an early boot, if not the first boot, and I hate to say that. I really do. I just think his reputation will haunt him and the fact it’s his fourth time will also really hurt him. His wife seems like a nice lady and I would’ve liked to see her maybe just on a separate season not involving returning players as I think she could do well. But I see them sacrificing each other or something along the way, and as soon as the other is gone, the other one will essentially ‘give up’. That shows love, but it won’t work well in the game. I even see both of them being the first two send to Redemption Island right at the beginning. The ‘four time player always wins on their fourth time’ quote might soon be retired come December. Predicted Finish: Rupert first boot, Laura B early boot
This season is just so damn exciting that I wish it was starting already! Looking forward to covering it for you over the coming months, speaking to the contestants and doing episode recaps along the way! Get excited Survivor fans!
First off, to all the flogs complaining about how this season is going to suck, who are tweeting Jeff saying he has ruined the show and various other things, get over yourselves! If you disapprove of the format, twists, returnees or what colours are chosen for tribe colours that much… STOP WATCHING!
There is one main rule when it comes to a television show; it HAS to rate. Survivor is now in its twenty-seventh season, if they kept the format the same since Borneo, it would have collapsed a long time ago because people would have stopped watching the same old thing. Introducing new twists is all part of keeping the ratings up for Survivor to continue on the air.
You might have guessed by now that I am not a “hater” of this season, instead, immensely looking forward to it! Whilst I was seriously questioning Lyn Spillman’s sanity after reading through the twists, once I got my head around them, they make a lot of sense. Day Zero isn’t going to change the game in the slightest, but brining back Redemption Island and the twists surrounding it is a masterstroke! The Redemption Island twist isn’t that bad, it just didn’t work in seasons twenty-two and twenty-three because they were experimenting. It was frustrating to watch a handful of people dominate on RI in the two seasons and even more frustrating that there were no set guidelines about when duels would be held and how many would compete in them. I think this season they have put a lot of work into making Redemption Island “work” so I’m excited to see how it will all play out.
However, there is a minor negative. Not everyone who watches the show are big fans, they might miss an episode here or there because of other commitments, so it could be confusing to these “casual fans” who sit down to watch after missing the previous episode to see a totally new set of castaways heading up the Redemption Island Duel because they swapped positions with their loved one in the previous episode. As I said, it’s a minor negative as most people tend not to miss episodes of reality television as easily as an episode of a drama series.
The Hidden Immunity Idol twist will also add another interesting aspect yet I don’t agree with the fact that the clue will be needed in order to find it this season. These days, Idols are very easy to find because they tend to be hidden in obvious locations so let’s hope they’ve put some thought into where they are going to hide them this season. I’m also hoping that they return to the old days, (Fiji, Micronesia, Gabon and Tocantins), where several clues, (not just one), are needed to find the Idol so the castaways are sent on a ‘scavenger hunt’ type journey in order to find it. (The Idol is powerful tool in the game so I think that castaways should have to work in order to find it… not just stick their hand in a hole in an odd shaped tree).
As for the major twist, (returning players playing with/against family members), I think it’s interesting and will bring a new element to the game. It’s going to be interesting to see if anyone does actually backstab their loved one or something similar. Personally, I can’t see it happening to the blood relatives, but I can see it happening from someone like Hayden. Kat proved in One World she can be annoying so I wouldn’t be surprised to see him give her the flick to benefit his game. Compared to Monica and Brad, (who have been married twenty-one years), a year dating is nothing when looking at Kat and Hayden.
As for the returnees themselves, much like last season, I’m not over the moon about them. I have a handful that I want to see do really well and then several I believe will do well.
I think it will be great to have an “original” back. Gervase is hilarious and I think he’s a great casting choice. However, I can’t see him doing that well game wise. He had no strategy at all in Borneo, (admittedly it was the first ever season), so he’s got a lot to learn. Physically he seems capable and socially I think he’ll do well. I think Gervase can go far in the game but it will be as a pawn, rather than as a leader or major threat. In saying that he has watched every season since he appeared on the show so he should know a thing or two about how to play the game in this era of Survivor. As for Marissa, I can see her being an early boot. I think she’s going to be very star struck by the experience and I can’t see how she will benefit a tribe.
Bringing back Tina now is a bit of a strange choice. If we see an all winner’s seasons sometime in the feature, it will be Tina’s fourth time playing and at the moment I can’t see what warrants her to be a four time player. I don’t mind Tina but she won’t be able to play the same social game she has in the past. Being a winner, she’ll have a big target on her back and I don’t think her best move is to lay low. To be successful this season, I’d like to see Tina stand up and put herself in the line of fire. She’s highly competitive and knows how to win the game so if she gets the chance to do it again, she can, but I don’t think she will. Her daughter Katie is an interesting one, I think she’s fit enough to impose herself physically and will be able to play a good social game but I think she may fall into the “hot, young girl” category which could cost her. She needs to have a few strong challenge performances early on to prove herself and then she can start playing her social game.
Rupert… please stop returning and please stop acting like a goose. Just the sound of your voice gets me annoyed. After watching your meet the cast video it confirmed that I can’t stand you and hope you and your wife go home very early. Rupert Boneham was cool like eight years ago, now he’s just a washed up politician who still thinks he’s on an island in Panama. Along with his wife, I think their arrogance will hurt them this season along with the massive target Rupert will have on his back. Crossing my fingers for a first boot but unfortunately he’ll probably make the Merge once again. As for Laura… it’s just like having a female Rupert. One last thing, please buy a new shirt Rupert!
I’m excited to see Aras play again. I think his win in Panama is extremely underrated especially considering he arguably beat two players who have been unlucky to have never won the game in Cirie Fields and Terry Dietz. Like Tina, Aras will be under heavy fire because he’s a winner but I think Aras has more to offer than Tina; he’s physically strong, good eye-candy for the females and is very good socially. If he can work his way into a strong alliance in the number three or four spot and make the Merge, he’ll start to shine then. His brother Vytas is going to bring a lot to the table. He has many of the same attributes as Aras but doesn’t have the Survivor experience. If they end up on a tribe together, they’ll make a dangerous pairing.
I know I’m going to cop it for this but I really don’t care, I like Candice. I agree that she might not be the most interesting player but she has finished well into the Jury phase of the game each time she has played. I think Candice’s biggest problem is that in both seasons she played in, (especially Heroes vs. Villains), she was surrounded by big personalities and big egos and I don’t think she has fits into those two categories. I think Candice is naturally quiet and reserved and therefore doesn’t get a very good edit and gets portrayed badly. I think some of these things are touched on in her meet the cast video so check it out to see what I mean. With her husband alongside her this season, I think we’ll get to see a different side of Candice, possibly the reason why she’s played three times. I hope that Candice goes really well this season; she has proven in the past she is a very good physical player, she must play a decent social game for her to stick around for so long but strategically she has lacked the ability to make a power move. If she can do that this season and take control of her own game, I can see her being right up there once again. I don’t think her husband is the most interesting loved one but I think he has a lot to offer to the game. If they can make it deep into the game together, they are going to be tough to beat physically, as I feel both can easily hold their own in challenges.
Tyson is someone else I can’t stand. The bloke’s ego is huge and I can’t stand him. Tyson proved in Heroes vs. Villains he’s as stupid as he looks so fingers crossed he does it again.
Whilst I’ll be the first to admit he’s a beast in challenges, he’s one of the bigger characters of all ten returnees so its gong to be interesting to see how he handles being a big name player – in Heroes vs. Villains he could have fallen through the cracks because he was surrounded by bigger names/bigger egos. His girlfriend Rachel does absolutely nothing for me and I think she’s only there because Tyson is. I can’t see her doing much at all in the game.
Of all the women they could have bought back this season I’m pretty disappointed that Laura got the gig. I’ve always found Laura to be ‘all talk, no action’ and can’t stomach the fact she can’t get over she was outplayed by Russell in Samoa – Yes she was outplayed by him, you can’t argue with that. I would have preferred to see someone else so I hope both Laura and her daughter Ciera don’t go all the way. I think Laura talks herself up to big player when in actual fact she was pretty stupid to let an eight against four advantage slide in Samoa. As they say, like mother like daughter, I think Ciera won’t offer much this season and will end up either getting booted early on or ending up like Julia in Caramoan, getting no screen time whatsoever and going home just before the Merge.
Monica is a tough one for me, it’s hard to like her but it’s hard to dislike her. I think she a very nice person but I just don’t think Survivor is for her. Strategically I just don’t think she has what it takes yet physically and socially she is beyond capable. I won’t be surprised to see her go early on but I also won’t be surprised if she hangs around until the business end of the season; I do like her more than others, so I hope she achieves the latter. Out of all the loved ones I think Brad has the biggest potential. His intro video got me interested and he seems like a decent guy. A big problem will be his dislike of Colton for blindsiding Monica in One World so if he can put that on the backburner until the time is right, I think these two could be the big surprise packet this season.
I still have no idea if I like Colton. When I watched and re-watched One World I couldn’t stand him yet in his Survivor Oz interview I was pleasantly surprised and really enjoyed it. I’m always drawn to the super fans who play the game because I think it’s great that they get to play the game they love, however, I’m still not sure about Colton. His reputation proceeding him is going to be huge, if he can prove that he’s a changed man I can see him doing really well this season. Just like Cochran last season, I’ve got this feeling that despite not really liked him going into the season, at the end of the season, I’ll be a fan of his. Apparently Colton is playing with his fiancé Caleb but in their intro video he said about four words so I’m not to sure what to expect from him. I’m going to assume he’s going to be similar to Rafe from Guatemala but won’t make it as far. I can see Caleb making it a few votes before or after he Merge because I think he’ll be a mere number, rather than an important member of an alliance.
Kat is without doubt my least favourite female returnee. I can’t stand her, she needs to grow up. It’s pretty clear she got the nod over others simply because she’s dating Hayden which will draw Big Brother fans into watching this season. I’ve always thought Kat should have gone home instead of Nina in the second episode of One World so I hope that catches up with her and she doesn’t last very long. Hayden you’re actually not that great, so I hope you fall on your sword and try and be “noble”, swap places with Kat at Redemption Island and lose the duel.
All in all, I can’t wait to see how this season will play out but I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it lives up to its expectations and that the returnees I like outlast the ones I don’t like! I hope we have a few people swap places with their loved one costing them the game, a few swaps that are game changing moves and a few people have to cut their loved one loose.
I’ll be keeping a close eye on everyone’s favourite this season, (Candice), in hope that she can prove everyone wrong and go on to win, whilst also watching Aras closely.
Let’s hope we get a cracking season of Survivor!
I won’t say I’m not excited for this season because I am actually very excited, as I am for any new season of Survivor. However, my expectations going into the season are pretty low. The new premise of loved ones playing together on the show should make for interesting and dramatic television, but it’s not the Survivor that we all know and love. I don’t know how well it will play out, but I will admit that I’m keen to see the new dynamics that it will bring to the game. I am also really glad that the couples will be split at the start of the game. As for the return of Redemption Island, I really have nothing positive to say. The two seasons in which it was used previously are two of my least favourite seasons, for a large part because of the Redemption Island twist itself. You no longer get to see separate reward and Immunity challenges and Tribal Council becomes much less significant and dramatic because we know that the person who is voted out will not be leaving the game for good.
I am not as overly disappointed with the cast as some people are. Am I the only one who still has a soft spot for Rupert? I am definitely happy to see Colton, Aras, Gervase and Kat playing again, and the only other cast member I am really disappointed to see back is Candice (seriously, why is she back for a third time?) Pre-game, I am kind of rooting for Colton and even Rupert to go far. I would actually love to see Rupert make it all the way to the end with his wife. I’m looking forward to the season starting. Bring on September 18th!
I don’t necessarily think that a season mixing returning players with their family members is that bad of an idea. In fact, years ago I thought that it would make for an ideal season. If you look back on past seasons of Survivor, every time a major twist is done, it has been for the benefit of the game. The tribe switch, the hidden immunity idol, even Redemption Island were all intended to keep the game from becoming too predictable or stale. On the surface, players vs family members adds some unpredictability to the game that it may be in desperate need of, especially when it comes to alliances. In the past five seasons, 4 of them have been dominated by unbreakable alliances across tribal lines. Redemption Island, South Pacific, One World, and Caramoan all played out the same, with one tribe dominating straight to the end. Only Philippines had any real mix ups, and it took a three tribe format to accomplish that. Nobody really wants a straight Pagonging these days, and recent seasons predictability post-merge may be one of the main reasons interest in the show has diminished since Heroes vs Villains. For this reason, I think the Blood vs Water format will work in the second half of the series at the very least. My main concern is with the over abundance of twists on top of this. Redemption Island again? It is true that many twists in the past started out poor and developed in future seasons, especially Exile Island, but the problems with Redemption Island cannot be remedied with trade-offs and clues to hidden idols. The problem will always remain that the tribal council boots will be half as exciting, valuable air time that could be devoted to good players still in the game is eaten up, and people already voted out can never be as deserving of a winner as those who last a full 39 days.
Now for the Blood vs Water players. Even though there have been some questionable returnees in past seasons, some on Blood vs Water go beyond questionable. Out of all ten returning players, Gervase and Laura are the only ones I ever would have seen selected for an all star season. Gervase is still one of the most entertaining and charismatic players in 26 seasons. Laura was one of the hardest players in Samoa, and that’s the reason why she was such a huge target week after week. Besides them, I can’t see any good reason to bring back the other returnees. Colton made the game in One World interesting, but as a character he was so negative that the show became near unwatchable. I can’t see any possible scenario where Monica Culpepper could have been considered as a returnee, except for one where they want to cast her famous husband with her. I hate the idea of 3rd time players, unless it’s in a full all star season. Having already failed twice before, Tyson, Candice and Tina have had their shots. At a fourth try, Rupert has officially crossed into overkill territory. Not to mention that he seems more interested in winning the fan favourite vote than anything else. That only leaves Kat and Aras. I disliked both of them in their original seasons, but both seem to have grown a lot. I hold out a little bit of hope for them.
I’d love to judge the new players, but the EW interviews were 90% of the returning players. Some of these newbies said no more than one sentence. I just hope this isn’t another Fans vs Favourites, where the new players get completely buried in the edit for more returnees overkill. The only two new players that struck me as interesting were Marissa Peterson, who could end up being the most entertaining new player of the season, and Brad Culpepper, who could end up being the smartest new player of the season. I might go as far as saying that Brad could be the front runner to win the game.
I think as crazy as the Blood vs Water concept is, it could have really worked if done subtly, but the overuse of twists will probably strip the season of any real entertainment.
The upcoming Blood v Water season is a crucial one in the overall context in the Survivor franchise. With public reaction to Caramoan being not as positive as Jeff Probst thought and ratings being lower than ever (the season premiere is the lowest rating premiere in history), season 27 needs to be a successful one.
In what seems to be the common theme these days, twists are paramount. In the past 6 seasons we have seen everything from the medallion of power to One world, but perhaps the most controversial twist is back; redemption island. Combined with the new concept of day zero, a school yard pick straight off the bat, loved ones competing with returning contestants and the ability for loved ones to switch positions on Redemption Island, this upcoming season promises to be unpredictable. I only hope it is unpredictable in a good way.
What will be crucial in my opinion is the way in which the season is edited. One of the main complaints about Caramoan is that 90% of the screen time was taken up by a combination of Phillip, Cochran, Malcolm and Dawn crying, which left other contestant stories left on the cutting room floor. Probst has acknowledged that this was a mistake, and has said that this upcoming season will be more fairly edited and show everybody’s storylines more equally. If this occurs, then I will be ecstatic.
In terms of predictions, I like the look of Brad Culpepper and the Aras/Vytas combination. They will be an asset to their tribes and as such should make it to at least the merge. Aras has shown he can win this game, and there is no reason why he can’t do it again. Rupert is a 4th timer, so statistically speaking he is a shoe-in to win but I really don’t see it happening. I would guess that the people not being picked straight off the bat would be Colton for his reputation and either Ciera or Laura B for their physical abilities. But hey, I’m willing to be surprised.
And the winner? Vytas of course. He’s my sweepstake pick so he has to win!
I’m really excited about this season, more than I thought I would be, however in saying that this season is either going to be really bad or really good. I’m swaying towards the good side due to the large number of interesting (and creative) twists. I think it’s fair to say that if anything is predictable this season it’s that neither Tina or Rupert will win but I do think both will go far.
For me the most interesting twist is being able to swap places at redemption island and while I don’t see anyone ever wanting to swap (after all the returning players have had a shot at winning the million before) you never know what they will do when they have their loved one begging / pleading with them to let them back in the game. Emotional blackmail has always been a big part of Survivor ! Not to happy to see Colton back, someone like him never changes but prove me and the rest of the world wrong. It will also be interesting to see what happens if 2 loved ones are in the final and what will happen with the money! I certainly am very excited for this season to start and I eagerly await watching it live at 3am here in Ireland!
We’ve seen past Survivor season being divided by race, age, gender….we’ve seen the introduction of ‘Exile Island’, ‘Redemption Island’ and the hidden immunity idols, to keep the show ‘fresh’. But with the new season just around the corner, we will see for the first time, returning contestants against their loved ones. Sure, it would be nice to have someone from ‘home’ with you every step of the way, but I am not convinced if CBS will have a ‘hit’ on its hands. Survivor is best played among a group of strangers…just imagine the consequences of a loved one being blindsided in the game? Could the ramifications go well beyond the game? Time will tell.
In my opinion, the introduction of ‘Redemption Island’ is the worst ever twist to have happen in Survivor. I like the way the ‘old’ Survivor was played where a castaway would be voted off each week, NO second chances. Are we really going to see the same person winning the duels time and time again each week? Then by the time they get back into the game, will they get voted off almost immediately and repeat the whole process again? Will ‘Redemption Island’ be in place after the merge as in Survivor South Pacific? It made it seem so lame. If that is the case, then ‘Tribal Councils’ don’t have the same meaning anymore.
Also, CBS should realise that Survivor has a huge fan base around the world, so why not give the fans a ‘voice’ and let us vote on who we want back in the game. Just like in the American Football or the Baseball All-Star games, fans are encouraged to vote on who they want to see take part in the game. Why can’t Survivor adopt the process? I would love to see a variety of returning players have a second shot at Survivor. Do we really need to see the same old players time and time again?
Our second ever preview episode is here, as Ben is joined by a gang of Ozlets to decode everything about the 27th season! From going through the twists, talking through the players and discussing just why Candice isn’t worthy of a third time around, it’s one of the most entertaining and longest episodes in the history of Survivor Oz! We ever draw our ‘ponies’ live on air for all to hear about! For those playing at home, here is who has who for the ‘pony draw’, and remember real money is on the line too!
The person who has the pony who wins will win $100, person who gets runner-up will get $50, third place gets $30 while the first boot will get $20! Lynda, Cable and Jimmy both purchased two ponies, hence why they have two contestants!
Don’t miss this episode, download it NOW!
There you go! Our mega preview article and episode is done and dusted! Make sure you tune in each week for our weekly recap, both written and also in the form of a former Survivor contestant talking up the weekly episode! We will also be kicking off this season ‘POWER RANKINGS’ which will see myself, Ben and two other Ozlets (remaining anonymous to make things interesting) rank each contestant and give them a weekly ranking. We also have other exciting things planned throughout this season, including giveaways and some exciting new episodes depending on the airdates of the show in Australia! So as always stay tuned right here to Survivor Oz to get all you need during the 27th season of Survivor!