Survivor III Finale Flawed.
February 22, 2002 11:14 PM   Subscribe

Survivor III Finale Flawed. If there's any doubt still that this show is a complete waste of time, check out this "news" tidbit that CBS is doing a good job of squashing. Turns out the ending was flawed; the other finalists have now been paid handsomely to behave.
posted by Fofer (13 comments total)
Scroll down to the 4th story. The link doesn't seem static, so here's the text just in case:

CBS' "Survivor: Africa" was belatedly forced to declare three second-place winners because of an error made during an immunity challenge.

Contestants Lex van den Berghe of Santa Cruz, Calif., and Tom Buchanan of Rich Valley, Va., were bumped up in the standings, CBS said. They join the original runner-up, Kim Johnson of Oyster Bay, N.Y., all receiving a second-place prize of $100,000. Ethan Zohn of Lexington, Mass., remains the $1-million top winner.

The problem occurred during one of the final immunity challenges, in which contestants were asked to identify which of the female players did not have any body piercings. The producers later discovered there was more than one right answer.

posted by Fofer at 11:15 PM on February 22, 2002

Are they actually squashing it, or do people just not care? I watched the third series, enjoyed it, and forgot about it almost immediately afterwards. It’s still an enjoyable game show, but nothing more than that. There was a mistake with a challenge and they made up for it by making the prizes fair. Oh well.
posted by Gary at 12:20 AM on February 23, 2002

I heard on the grapevine that Jeff Probst was caught under a mosquito tent with that french judge...
posted by ZachsMind at 2:01 AM on February 23, 2002

The rules on Survivor have been bogus since they changed them in the middle of the last game by mixing up the two tribes. For the next game, they've warned contestants not to rely on any past knowledge of the rules, so I expect even more meddling.

I don't think any of that takes away from the core appeal of the show: Watching 16 self-absorbed people trying to validate their being by becoming celebrities. I wish there was a Survivor spinoff that kept up with former contestants trying desperately to hang on in the 15th minute of fame.
posted by rcade at 4:59 AM on February 23, 2002

I'm proud to say that I've never watched even one episode of any of the Survivor series. Then again, I never miss a single Real World episode. I like my voyeurism subjects to be fighting over the love of their nubile roomates rather than a maggot-infested rat dinner.
posted by treywhit at 5:42 AM on February 23, 2002

To those who put down Survivor, "to each his own". Oh, and thank you, Fox, for cancelling that idiotic Futurama, which I am proud to say that I have never watched. ;-P
posted by mischief at 5:59 AM on February 23, 2002

mischief, to each his own, indeed. But how can you judge something you've never watched? (Or am I just leaping at troll bait?)
posted by Fofer at 6:50 AM on February 23, 2002

watched it, read it, still think ethan would have won. mmmmmm, soccer players.
posted by eatdonuts at 8:08 AM on February 23, 2002

Oh, and thank you, Fox, for cancelling that idiotic Futurama, which I am proud to say that I have never watched. ;-P

if you have never watched futurama. how do you know it is idiotic? I can fully understand the external decision that the show would not suit your tastes. but to propagate an opinion of "crapness" without ANY knowledge of the target is beyond embaressing.

its this kind of blind predjudice that tends to influence many of the horrible, disgusting things things humans seem to end up doing to eachover and our earth.
posted by toxicsoul at 2:59 PM on February 23, 2002

Hey, I don't have to watch Survivor to decide it's crap. There are some premises that simply cannot be made into good television. Even if a miracle were to occur, it would only be able to rise to mediocre.

So if I can do that, it's perfectly acceptable for anyone else to find flaw in a show for its uninteresting premise. Even Futurama, which I happen to like a lot. I certainly understand how someone who didn't care for animation, or Groening, or science fiction would judge it as sucking even without watching it.
posted by kindall at 3:55 PM on February 23, 2002

I've seen both Futurama and Survivor. First off there's no comparison. They're apples & oranges.

Futurama was an attempt to recreate the fun strangeness of Simpsons. They wanted a new phenomenon. They failed. It was a handful of drunk writers in a room laughing at each other's funny ideas, then when they sobered up they put their notes together and tried to make scripts. Visually it was braindead. Simpsons in Space was probably how they sold it to the network.

It's the opposite with Survivor. After its freak success in the first season, everyone and their dog tried to recreate its success with their own Simpsons in Space variations. Instead of an island, why not lock all the people up inside a faux house? Or put them all on a cruise liner? Why not chain them all together and tell them to go on a date? Why? Cuz it's stupid.

What made Survivor One work wasn't the locale or the producers or the challenges. The rules themselves have been bogus since the very beginning. What made the show work the first time was the chemistry of the people. It was the luck of the draw. It was also a matter of novelty. Never before had a tv show dedicated itself so to showing the raw and (almost) naked Average Joe with such blinding clarity. We saw each person in all their beauty and ugliness. We saw too much of some of them.

Survivors Two and Three have been mildly entertaining to watch, but the novelty has worn off, and the producers of the show are too busy trying to recreate the chemistry of the past by picking people who are kinda like the people who were most interesting the first time. This fourth time coming up, they claim to be going back to the basics. An actual island. As if the first time the island was what mattered.

After looking at the Olympics again this year, shows like Survivor are an insult of humanity. Survivor is like if the Olympics were run by Jerry Springer. The talent involved has little to do with physical prowess beyond stamina, but what the camera captures is truly both the thrill of victory and more importantly the agony of defeat. We see people at their worst and for some reason, many of us can't turn away. Does anyone who watches this show really care about the rules and the justice? When people watch the Olympics do they really care about impartiality or are they just waiting for the next Tonya Harding to attack a competitor? The next judge to make a political faux pas? The next tear-streaked face like Michele Kwan to be outshined by a younger, more care-free opponent?

Do we care about the game, or just how the people play it? Perhaps the next time you find yourself with your friends playing cards or Monopoly or Mah Jhong, you'll find yourself wondering why you're all gathered around that table. The game itself doesn't matter. For better or for worse, it's the people who make the game worthwhile.
posted by ZachsMind at 6:12 PM on February 23, 2002

Oh by the way, the same holds true for MetaFilter. The next time you find yourself in MetaTalk complaining or complaining about people complaining, remember that. For better or for worse, this place is nothing without the people who participate. Even and especially the ones you personally find distasteful. Or anal. Or stupid. Or thought-provoking. Or all the above or none of the above. It's all good. Even some buttwipe like Rich walking around nude and playing alpha male for a million bucks. Or some bipolar female like Bunnyfire threatening to leave only to get attention. It's all good.

It's the people in life that make living worthwhile.
posted by ZachsMind at 6:19 PM on February 23, 2002

Fofer, how can anyone decide Survivor was crap if they had never watched it? Strangely enough, Survivor has its own counterpart in Geekland, a boardgame called Diplomacy, plus any one of the last nine Survivors from the last arc would have been right at home on MeFi.

Like any other community, MeFi has its own herd instinct of putting something down based on false perceptions, when in fact that something may hold some interest for that community.
posted by mischief at 10:36 AM on February 24, 2002

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