Survivor: Second Chance
September 17, 2015 12:31 PM   Subscribe

Here's Everything You Need To Know About Survivor: Second Chance, by Josh Wigler

Josh is the co-author of The Evolution of Strategy: Commemorating 30 seasons of SURVIVOR with an in-depth look back at all 30 seasons [Audio, approx. 250 hours.]

Reddit's Survivor 31: Cambodia Pre-Season Megathread (Updated Regularly)
posted by roomthreeseventeen (71 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
 
I love this stupid fucking show.
posted by phunniemee at 12:45 PM on September 17, 2015 [13 favorites]


Me too!! I've watched every season.
posted by pearlybob at 12:48 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


This show is like crack, for me and the wife. Doesn't matter if it's a good season or bad season, we're watching.

Because when it's good, it's incredible.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:49 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


Everything except when the damn thing starts.
(Wednesday, September 23rd, you're welcome)
posted by Mchelly at 1:07 PM on September 17, 2015 [3 favorites]


Whoa, wicked Immunity Idol change this season:
Probst says that each camp contains a clue to the whereabouts of the hidden immunity idol, but “you won’t actually find the idol at camp.” Instead, “the clue will tell you that the idol is waiting for you at the next challenge. So you have to grab the idol while participating in an immunity challenge, under the eyes of all your tribe mates, and hope you don’t get caught.”

So, not only do the idols look different from each other this season, they’re also hidden in a way they’ve never been hidden before. In fact, Probst doesn’t even think of the idols as hidden; the clues will contain drawings of the challenges, and the exact location of the idol.

“So it’s not that the idol will be hard to find,” he says. “What’s going to be hard is, you will have nine tribe mates with you as you try to pull that idol out and put it in your pocket.”
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:08 PM on September 17, 2015 [5 favorites]


wooooooooow. ok. i can't wait.
posted by nadawi at 1:10 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


I know I don't see much television, but how could I have never watched even a tiny bit of something in its 31st season?
Has this been going on since 1985?
posted by MtDewd at 1:10 PM on September 17, 2015 [4 favorites]


Survivor runs two arcs a year, so it's only been on for 15 years.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:12 PM on September 17, 2015


That's because they do two seasons a year. It's roughly analogous to how game shows also shoot year-round and never seem to have an off-season.
posted by Strange Interlude at 1:12 PM on September 17, 2015


Survivor is the best show on television. No other show, scripted or reality, depicts human nature in its purest form, good and bad, like Survivor.
posted by The Gooch at 1:13 PM on September 17, 2015 [4 favorites]


something in its 31st season?
Has this been going on since 1985?


Mark Burnett is such a production juggernaut he managed to cram an extra year into every year. Praise be.
posted by phunniemee at 1:13 PM on September 17, 2015 [6 favorites]


There's a 'season' in the fall from September to December, then another from February to May, then a long, long, long wait over the summer.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:14 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


Long, long, long wait over the summer = Big Brother.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:15 PM on September 17, 2015


no, no, he said 1985, not 1984
posted by phunniemee at 1:16 PM on September 17, 2015 [8 favorites]


you know, i feel like i shouldn't speak this out loud for fear of making the world a worse place, but i'd watch a "bachelor in paradise" mixed with "ru paul's drag race" show centered around previous contestants over the summer months.
posted by nadawi at 1:17 PM on September 17, 2015 [6 favorites]


So, first season of Survivor. I've been watching faithfully; my (soon-to-be) wife hasn't been paying much attention. The final episode is on and she joins me on the couch. Halfway in, she asks me to go out on a munchie run.

The things we do for love.
posted by nubs at 1:18 PM on September 17, 2015


british celebrity big brother this year is amazing (terrible). i haven't watched the american version in a couple of years because i keep tuning in on youtube for emma and rylan in borehamwood.
posted by nadawi at 1:19 PM on September 17, 2015


Long, long, long wait over the summer = Big Brother.

Oh fuck no. If the people aren't "stranded" on an island with five camera on them at all times, then it's not real!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:19 PM on September 17, 2015 [6 favorites]


I just tune in to see year after year of people crying because it won't stop raining in the rainforest.
posted by phunniemee at 1:21 PM on September 17, 2015 [16 favorites]


and close ups of gross feet.
posted by nadawi at 1:22 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


Or when they all wake up looking like they've got smallpox and have clearly all been eaten alive by some sort of biting insect and somehow no conversation of the horrors ever makes it to tape.
posted by phunniemee at 1:26 PM on September 17, 2015 [7 favorites]


I'm pretty sure I already know all I need to know about this show.
posted by uberchet at 1:30 PM on September 17, 2015 [4 favorites]


So my idea of a great twist for the show:

Do the setup the usual way - split them into tribes, drop them off, let them have a couple of days to figure out their camp and start the usual scheming and pecking order and such. Then do the first challenge; but both tribes have to come to council that evening.

Where you reveal the twist - no one is getting voted off; they have to all live together for 41 days. The winning tribe gets to pick which campsite everyone is in for the rest of the stay. And every few days, tribal council will be an opportunity to vote for the best player and you can't vote for yourself. At the final tribal council, the tally will be made and the person with the most votes overall wins. And then you sprinkle reward challenges throughout the time and see how the winners of those rewards use them with the rest of the group.
posted by nubs at 1:36 PM on September 17, 2015 [11 favorites]


I want to see them bring back voted out players in a very specific way. In the final four challenge, voted out players act as guides for at certain, say being able to answer only yes or no to questions or just point in a direction. The beauty is that the "ghosts" can lie. So they can choose to mess up your game, it's based on how they feel about the player.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:42 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


We are going to do a friends and family fantasy draft for the Second Chance season. I can't wait.
posted by trunk muffins at 1:45 PM on September 17, 2015


My dream season will still be Survivor: Raft in the Middle of the Pacific but no one asks what I want
posted by Mchelly at 1:47 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


I went and rewatched several early seasons this summer as a refresher/prep and here are some things I'd really like to see them bring back this season:

1) Rewarding ingenuity. The Pearl Islands season I think was a really good example of this. They got nothing to start with and right off the boat they had the teams go into a village and barter for all of their supplies. Sandra was really, really good at haggling and spoke Spanish, and as a result her tribe got a ton of great stuff and was put in a prime position early in the game. The other team made horrible choices (lol, how about I sell literally ALL of the clothing I'm wearing then bitch about how cold I am later) and were downright rude to the shop owners in the village, and came away much worse off. Great game starting dynamic. Rewarded shrewdness and people skills without it feeling like typical Survivor gameplay.

2) Long term use rewards. Again I'll bring up Pearl Islands. Like when one of the rewards, instead of clothing, was a sewing machine, fabric, and findings. The players actually got to use it and keep using it throughout the game, it helped the team a lot, and it led to the wonderful moment where Rupert got to be all "yeah, I'm a big, hairy man who knows how to sew and is wearing a skirt, don't be such an ass, dude." Or in All-Stars when they gave them a bunch of construction supplies and let them build a proper shelter. Really great tv, got to see the players showcase their out-of-game talents and skills.

3) Pre-challenge prep things. Like in Australia where they had to construct a stretcher to use in the challenge, or in I forget which season (Marquesas, maybe?) where they got stilts ahead of time to practice with. Lots of fun to watch the teamwork and planning before the rush-rush-shout-shout-bleed-bleed of the actual challenges.
posted by phunniemee at 1:49 PM on September 17, 2015 [7 favorites]


Also I'd like to see a Survivor season in a cold weather climate but then there's no hot people running around in their underpants anymore and suddenly the network drops the show.
posted by phunniemee at 1:50 PM on September 17, 2015 [8 favorites]


i want to see more organic bartering with jeff - like the peanut butter in the amazon (but maybe not like the flint incident last year).
posted by nadawi at 1:53 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


I would watch a show that's just a stream of all the DMs between the contestants in the months leading up to the vote.
posted by acidic at 1:54 PM on September 17, 2015 [3 favorites]


but then there's no hot people running around in their underpants anymore

They're all skeletal by the second week anyways; to me they cease to be "hot" people pretty fast.
posted by nubs at 1:54 PM on September 17, 2015


i wish they didn't edit in such a way to try to hide the women's body hair - an editing issue that seems to get worse every year. it's one of the parts i like in a "everyone shows up with this very planned artifice and fairly quickly they just turn into people walking around in very human bodies"
posted by nadawi at 2:00 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


Every time I flip past Survivior, I always ask* "Who the hell is still watching this?"

Apparently now I know the answer. All of Metafilter!

*usually the cats
posted by madajb at 2:03 PM on September 17, 2015 [6 favorites]


"everyone shows up with this very planned artifice and fairly quickly they just turn into people walking around in very human bodies"

It took me a stupid long amount of time last season seeing Carolyn constantly with eyeliner wondering WHERE IS SHE GETTING HER EYELINER EVERY DAY, IS IT HER LUXURY* ITEM, WHAT A STUPID LUXURY ITEM, THIS IS HOW YOU GET PINK EYE before I realized she probably had her makeup tattooed on.

*Do they even do luxury items any more? I'd like to see luxury items come back, too, just because I'd like to see the sneaky smart ways folks use them. Like Colby's Texas flag.
posted by phunniemee at 2:04 PM on September 17, 2015 [3 favorites]


Same with Sierra's horrible terrible distracting eyebrows.
posted by phunniemee at 2:05 PM on September 17, 2015


ha yes! i was also slow on the uptake about the tattooed makeup.
posted by nadawi at 2:05 PM on September 17, 2015


Same with Sierra's horrible terrible distracting eyebrows.

Sierra was actually in a weird accident and lost her eyebrows, which is why they are tattooed on.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 2:06 PM on September 17, 2015


It's reached the point where I honestly don't know if you're joking or not but they wouldn't have been nearly so bad if her blonde eyebrows weren't growing in over and beyond the brown tattooed ones.
posted by phunniemee at 2:07 PM on September 17, 2015


phunniemee, no, not kidding. She lost them as a child.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 2:09 PM on September 17, 2015


My dream season will still be Survivor: Raft in the Middle of the Pacific but no one asks what I want

First challenge: build the desalinator.

Second challenge: make fishhooks from random items in your pockets.

....

Seventh challenge: navigate by the stars.

....

Fifteenth challenge: determine which voices are your fellow contestants, and which are coming from inside your head.
....

Bonus pirate round!
posted by Kevin Street at 2:11 PM on September 17, 2015 [11 favorites]


16th Challenge, convince the tiger not to eat you.
posted by drezdn at 2:14 PM on September 17, 2015 [5 favorites]


I just tune in to see year after year of people crying because it won't stop raining in the rainforest.

With everyone as a second time competitor, at least no one will quit, right? I can't stand when they go through all the rounds and rounds of interviews to beat out how many thousand applicants, only to cry and quit the game because it's goddamn raining or cold. Umm, that's the whole game?

Also, the returning characters are pretty incredible, Spencer? Woo? Terry? Joe? Jermey? All physical all-stars. Kass, Stephen, Monica, Kelly? Fantastic strategists. I don't much like the social style players, but they're there too. Should be a great season.
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:37 PM on September 17, 2015


tbh I would watch a season with just 20 Jeff Varners.
posted by phunniemee at 2:38 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


With everyone as a second time competitor, at least no one will quit, right? I can't stand when they go through all the rounds and rounds of interviews to beat out how many thousand applicants, only to cry and quit the game because it's goddamn raining or cold. Umm, that's the whole game?

So long as they're not named Colton, they don't.
posted by Atreides at 2:47 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


The fact that the band Survivor has yet to appear on this show means no one involved has a lick of a sense of humor.
posted by item at 3:01 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


Also I'd like to see a Survivor season in a cold weather climate but then there's no hot people running around in their underpants anymore and suddenly the network drops the show.

Please, God, this. My biggest problem with Survivor is how stale the environments are. It's always some collection of small islands with beautifully clear, blue water or just them living on some coast. I miss back when they'd be thrown into the Australian outback, or Africa, or China, or the Amazon, or Guatemala where the one tribe lived at a Mayan ruin. Apparently they were suppose to be thrown into Jordan at one point, but then things went real bad there. That would have been cool, to see a desert. But a cold environment would also be great. Anything but what we've been getting.
posted by Dalby at 3:15 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


So, not only do the idols look different from each other this season, they’re also hidden in a way they’ve never been hidden before.

The idols will appear as organs and are implanted into the bodies of random participants. Is that kidney immunity or murder?

Survivor: Arkham Graveyard
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:25 PM on September 17, 2015 [6 favorites]


So long as they're not named Colton, they don't.

Have Na'Onka and Purple Kelly been forgotten so soon?!?
posted by trunk muffins at 3:30 PM on September 17, 2015


I 'm glad that Shirin will be back, after she was mistreated by Will and others last season.
posted by Sir Rinse at 3:31 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


Have Na'Onka and Purple Kelly been forgotten so soon?!?

As far as I'm aware, neither of them came back for a second season.
posted by phunniemee at 3:35 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


So long as they're not named Colton, they don't.

Or Sue or Johnny (sort of) orJenna (although she had a pretty damn good excuse).
posted by The Gooch at 4:05 PM on September 17, 2015


Jenna and Sue can't really be called quits.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:06 PM on September 17, 2015


I really hate this show.

It would only be watchable if on the first day they set loose a face-hugger on the Island.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 4:09 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


One thing I've found disappointing in latter seasons (still love the show, don't get me wrong!), is how the survivor aspects seem to have fallen by the wayside. There's been a steady drop off, I've felt, in people who have attempted to learn - and then use - any actual survival skills out there.

The shelters are, more often than not, a bloody embarrassment compared to the castles that Boston Rob would construct. No one seems to fish any more, and forget about traps to catch food etc. They all just seem to ration our their rice - lame. Those calories make a huge difference.

I was aghast last season when those idiots had three chickens - I believe it was two hens and a rooster - and then they killed one of the hens. Aside from the fact that that would be guaranteed one egg a day, mostly two, by not killing the hens, the fact they let the useless rooster live was baffling to me!
posted by smoke at 4:26 PM on September 17, 2015 [12 favorites]


the survival stuff is often curtailed by their location - if you don't see people fishing, it's because they aren't allowed - same with trapping the local wildlife. also, with the reusing of locations the camps are a lot more trampled by the time the 2nd set get there, which results in less stuff to catch by and large. a variety of locations and a little more freedom to do those things (ethically) would be nice. because i agree, the same beaches, and everyone gets a few chickens sooner or later, and someone doesn't know how to measure rice, makes those parts less enjoyable than they could be (and have been).
posted by nadawi at 4:51 PM on September 17, 2015


Also I'd like to see a Survivor season in a cold weather climate but then there's no hot people running around in their underpants anymore and suddenly the network drops the show.

The Discovery Channel made a survival reality show called Out of the Wild whose first couple seasons were filmed in Alaska. It's basically a hardcore hiking trip with more survival stuff, less drama and no competitions or Tribal Council -- though the challenge is extreme and people do drop out over the course of the show. Given the harsh weather conditions and the type of wildlife they had to deal with, I'd venture that cold weather is more dangerous for the contestants -- especially considering how many Survivor players don't even learn how to make fire before coming on the show -- and the producers prefer to limit their liabilities by filming in a comparatively mild tropical climate. Also, the whole "stranded on a deserted island with the clothes on your back" shtick would lose something if everyone were geared to the gills to protect from frostbite.

Anyway, I can't wait for this season! I always like the All-Stars seasons better than the others; it's way more entertaining when you know up front exactly what kind of characters you're watching. Regular seasons usually take me a few weeks to fully warm up to the cast.
posted by phatkitten at 5:39 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


I haven't watched survivor in a few years but caught History Channel's Alone (I know) and it was really entertaining.
posted by Mick at 5:50 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


“You get surprises, like Shane not getting on,” says Probst, “and you think, maybe it’s because the people who like Shane don’t vote. It’s that simple, maybe.”

Yes this seems about right
posted by kagredon at 6:00 PM on September 17, 2015


So have any of you Survivor fans seen The Genius?
posted by trunk muffins at 6:24 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


I have such a big crush on Stephen Fishbach. I just hope he's not the first one out.
posted by yellowcandy at 6:31 PM on September 17, 2015 [2 favorites]


I only had a vague idea that this show was still on. I think that i watched up to the fifth or sixth season but then gave up when it got repetitive.
posted by octothorpe at 6:46 PM on September 17, 2015


trunk muffins, I'm on episode 4 of season 1.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:47 PM on September 17, 2015


My favorite thing is trying to guess the winner based on the edit every person is getting, which I learned about at the amazing Survivor Sucks, which probably oughta be a FPP all by itself.

Considering the editing is a bit like seeing behind the curtain, but it opens up a new way of watching.
posted by imabanana at 7:52 PM on September 17, 2015


Every season I watch Survivor to see if someone has come on the show to make friends and every season I turn away, disappointed.
posted by Spatch at 7:54 PM on September 17, 2015 [6 favorites]


So have any of you Survivor fans seen The Genius?

The Genius is incredible. Rob Cesternino did a great podcast the other day that gives a really good overview of the show and why it's so wonderful.
posted by acidic at 8:04 PM on September 17, 2015 [1 favorite]


I think the rob and Amber season was the last one I watched all the way. After that, it just started to feel mean and icky, and it just made me uncomfortable, so I stopped. Every time I checked in, it was mean people being mean, so I stopped checking in. Has it gotten less mean spirited?
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 9:27 PM on September 17, 2015


The first season of the Genius is terrific television. The next three aren't bad either, but they really caught lightning in a bottle with that first cast. The most recent season needed more women in its cast, though.

I'm really excited for this season. Kelly Wiglesworth is actually one of my least favourite members of the Borneo cast (Team Sue!) but it's still cool to see her again even if Greg returning would have been more fun. More importantly I've been waiting for Kimmi and Jeff to come back for 15 years now, so hopefully they're still a disaster. And PG! And Kass! And Abi! Man, I hope this season is just a clusterfuck.
posted by Lina Lamont at 1:08 AM on September 18, 2015 [1 favorite]


Phunniemee, I loved Pearl Islands, but I thought it illustrated the problems with long term rewards. The fact that one tribe had a Spanish-speaker who was also a kick-ass negotiator meant they started the game with enough food to last them until the merge. That gave them a locked-in advantage in every single challenge, allowing them to dominate pre- and post-merge. Because the characters were so great, it was still one of my favorite seasons-- but a dominant tribe pagonging a weaker tribe usually makes for dull stretches. I feel like the show works best when they can prevent long-term advantages.
posted by yankeefog at 9:06 AM on September 18, 2015


SecretAgentSockpuppet, the Rob & Amber season was definitely one of the more bitter seasons. Some have been worse than others. If you want to get back into it, it's worth checking out Season 28 (Survivor: Cagayan), which certainly had its negative moments, but was generally one of the most enjoyable seasons in recent memory.
posted by yankeefog at 9:08 AM on September 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


Along with yankeefog's suggestion, I'd suggest avoiding season 30, which featured more than its fair share of negativity and people making things personal. It's one of those things that tends to vary from cast to cast.
posted by Lina Lamont at 4:31 PM on September 18, 2015


Oh my gosh people thanks for recommending The Genius, I've been indulging in 4 am cerebral Korean reality for the last few days and it's been awesome. I have no idea who these people are and it took me a few episodes to get a feel for the personalities, but it really is incredible casting.
posted by yellowbinder at 11:01 AM on September 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


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