Tag Archives: survivor

Was the outing of Zeke Smith beyond the bounds of the game?

How do we establish boundaries in a world that flourishes without them. We have seen men insult women, beat them call them whores and bitches. We see women fight as if they are trying out for Fight Club. Reality television exploits people who are 600 pounds, little people, smart people, not so smart people and rarely do you here a collective outcry, but last night when Varner told the tribe and the world that Zeke Smith was a transman finally we had boundaries, and this was a bridge too far. Really, we crossed that bridge years ago and burned it.

Survivor Finale and Domestic Violence and the Apology that fell flat

I watched last night’s Survivor finale and they showed a clip of a male contestant telling a female contestant to be quiet and that he wished someone would slap her. She revealed that she and her mother had been victims of domestic violence. The men apologized and said had they known her background they never would have made the remark, but that too was disturbing. You shouldn’t say someone should be slapped even if you don’t know their background.

Survivor (France) contestant dies after Tug of War competition

Gerald Babin

Gerald Babin was a contestant on Survivor France. He suffered a heart attack after a tug of war competition. the season has been cancelled in the wake of his death. Survivor takes some generally healthy adults and drops them off on a tropical island. They are given very little food and they regularly take part in virgorous competitions. This is a tragedy and perhaps it will make the creators review the game.


Was CBS Survivor irresponsible for casting Brandon Hantz?

I watch Survivor and last night will go down as a pivotal episode. Brandon Hantz, nephew of Survivor villian Russell had the meltdowns of meltdowns. He was so off the hook that an emergency tribal council was had to dispense with him quickly, but my question is didn’t the producers of the show know this guy was crazy from the jump? Yes they knew because he was on before and he did not go out like this but he showed he was not dealing with a full deck, but this kind of behavior makes good tv. No it doesn’t it makes the viewer uncomfortable. Viewers like drama but mental illness is not entertainment and last night that’s what we saw and that might bring in ratings but it is irresponsible to have a guy battling demons and forcing his castmates to watch. If you watched the show share your thoughts.

Why can’t a Black Woman Survive on CBS Survivor?

A sister does not have a chance on Survivor. They are doomed from the time they step off the boat. For some reason they simply don’t know when to simply stop talking. This is the second cycle in a row that a sister was the first to go to Redemption Island. Why does this happen? In both cases they simply talked their way out of the game. Tonight we saw Semhar attempt to score points shooting basketballs which were actually coconuts. She simply did not get enough in the basket. In most cases she might have been given a pass for simply stepping up and trying, but they sent her on her way. Keep in mind one of the other contestants had a total breakdown complete with fits of tears, and one male contestant is uncoordinated and has no physical strength, and neither of them received a single vote, but the black woman that tried is simply dismissed. She tried to turn the tide, but with every word uttered you could see her castmates say “oh no we’ve got an angry one and she has got to go”. I guess at some point black women will learn it is not worth it because you might spend one night with the tribe, and that simply is not worth the trip.

Please Tell me Where did CBS Survivor Finda NaOnka?

We all know reality television has nothing to do with reality. The loudest in the crowd tend to get more air time. This brings me to the latest cartoon like character–NaOnka. She is a contestant on the CBS show Survivor. Last night she and another candidate were fighting and I mean real tousling over a clue to a hidden immunity idol. The person she was battling with has one leg and that is not the issue. The contestant with the prothesis is a viable and formidable contestant, but NaOnka’s speech after retrieving the clue was over the top. She said she didn’t care if she had one leg, she threatened to hide it or even burn it. NaOnka said she didn’t go “ghetto” on the girl she went “hood” on her.  To say it was not enough. NaOnka had to do an imitation of both for the audience. Where do they find these people? Does the producer go out scouting them? Survivor is infamous for finding these polarizing stereotypes and it just seems a tad bit contrived to me.

Survivor Samoa: A Triumph of Good over Evil

If you have ever read my blog you know that I occasionally rail against reality shows, but I must admit I do like Survivor. I like it because it a show that challenges the contestants to outwit and outplay the other contestants. No one has to do anything illegal to get on this show. The most recent cycle ended last night. The player who had truly outwitted everyone in the game was named Russell. There was nothing too low for him to do, he lied to everyone and he even demeaned his allies. He knew that he would win because in his mind he had played the best game, but he lost. He lost because while he was outwitting and outplaying everyone he failed to make any true friends. He was out for himself and he was visibly stunned when he lost. One of the contestants said that Russell represented all the backstabbing co-workers we all deal with. They will do anything, say anything and step on anyone on their way up the ladder, and sadly most of the time they do get up the ladder, but in this case integrity won and that gives all of us hope.   One of the contestants that was on the jury gave an impassioned speech in which he asked his fellow jury members not to reward Russell’s bad behavior. I have watched enough of Survivor to know contestants do lie to each other to get further in the game but when a contestant loses his moral center in pursuit of the cash that is when the jury has to say we can’t reward this kind of behavior. I think last night should be ranked as one of Survior’s finest hours.

The Economic Reality of Reality Television


 Reality television is cheap to make. You simply need a group of people who are willing to share intimate portions of their lives for minimal compensation. You can put them in a game show like Survival, Big Brother or Road Rules. They can pose as romantic conquests on shows like The Bachelor, Flavor of Love or I Love New York. Or you can assemble a group of make believe Housewives. You simply need people who crave fame and will do anything to get their 15 minutes. The networks love the shows because the participants have no union so they have very limited rights. So when NBC Universal announced that it will begin airing Bravo’s Real Housewives franchise five days a week in syndication beginning fall 2010. Some of the housewives got upset because they are not entitled to a dime of the syndication revenue. The network said they were paid for the taping and that is that. So the divas of reality are getting a real dose of the real world, and they are learning that the world is cold.