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Survivor: Caramoan - Preview, Part 1

Meet the Fans

By Ben Willoughby

February 11, 2013

Even as strangers, you instantly like us better than every single one of the 'fan favorites'.

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I hope you’re looking forward to the 26th season of Survivor, because that would make one of us. The gimmick for this season is another fans versus favorites season. This will combine the tried and true formula of mixing die-hard fans of the show with returning players that we all recognize. And why not? Last time this happened we had a great season - though you'll also remember the fans were really “fans,” meaning there were more castaways that the casting people had met in LA bars than there were fans who had seen an episode of the show.

But this season is completely different because as well as fans who are “fans”, we also have favorites who are “favorites,” like "crazy whatsisface” from South Pacific and “who was that again?” from Gabon and plenty of other contestants who we’ve been trying to forget. I barely remember half these people because I gave up watching their seasons because of these same people. Why are they back? On the bright side, it’s not like many of these “favorites” will be able to run rings around the “fans” like Parvati, Amanda, Cirie etc did, so we might have an even contest.

Let’s meet this season’s “fans”, or at least my impressions from the meager snippets of video that CBS is offering this season:

Reynold

Reynold works in sales, and it shows. Reynold talks about how socially adaptable he is. Like, he’s traveled! And lived in Australia! Not exactly a culture shock there. The only real cultural differences are that Australians dislike American sports, gave up the penny in the '80s and are about three seasons behind on How I Met Your Mother. Anyway, Reynold keeps talking about his social adaptability, and how he wants to be the “fun guy” and form relationships with everyone and not be too threatening or get voted out first. Reynold seems pretty smooth but dull, so he should be safe in Episode 1.

Assessment: Reynold seems the sort of tall, blandly good-looking, white-collar white guy that castaways typically turn to for leadership. Expect him to stay around.




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Matt

Matt is a brand manager of a BMX company, and he has a beard that looks like a dreadlock. In fact, from some angles it looks like he used to have two, but one got stuck in some bicycle gears and hair amputation was required. Matt says that he looks like a “bad-ass dude,” but explains that he is really “sensitive, and wears his heart on his sleeve.” I think that’s code for emotionally unstable.

Matt’s preparation for Survivor includes “kicking caffeine and not drinking as much.” I suppose that’s preparation – at least, compared to Zane from last season. When asked if he fits that Survivor platitude “the complete package,” he agrees. He’s physical, he will “excel” at the social game and he’s mentally tough, having “dealt with hardship and crazy things." He wants teammates to perceive him as “an outspoken individual,” as though that’s a good thing in Survivor, as well as being positive and a “big kid at heart.”

Assessment: Matt doesn’t look like he is going to fit in with the rest of this crowd.


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