Survivor: Kaoh Rong

Episode 1 - I'm a Mental Giant

By Jim Van Nest

February 24, 2016

Guess what I did in the rice pot!

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Hello, good people, and welcome to the 32nd season of the reality giant, Survivor. To round out their 16th year on television, Survivor has gone back to the well of Brains vs Beauty vs Brawn. It's no surprise they would return to this theme, as ratings and season quality for three-tribe seasons have been pretty high and the last BvBvB season was VERY well received by fans of the show, as evidenced by four players from that season winning the fan vote to go back and play in last season's Second Chance. I'm not so sure they'll be able to catch lightning in a bottle twice on a season like this, but I sure am excited to see if they can.

If you haven't already checked them out, please be sure to check out my three preview columns leading up to the season premiere. I break down all the players and attempt to make it three in a row in winner predictions. Something else for us all to keep an eye on is the conditions out there. This has been billed as the most brutal season of Survivor ever and there will be at least one med-evac... So, from the sounds of it, you shouldn’t get too attached to anyone this season as they could be gone at any time. One last thing before I start, I'm going to change things up a little bit for this season's recaps. Rather than being ridiculously detailed and long winded through the recap, I'm going to be shooting for a shorter read. One that still gets you what you need to know, but doesn't run on so long you have to break in the middle for the bathroom and snacks. After this first column, let me know what you think. And now, if I'm correct, Jeff Probst is dying to tell you about the 18 Americans who are about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime. Thirty-nine days, 18 people, one Survivor!


The show opens with a wide shot of a large boat filled with people. Looks like everyone is starting on the same boat and while they're not allowed to speak to each other, they are divided into their three tribes. After a quick Probst lesson on the weather of Kaoh Rong - it's hot, real hot, damn hot, like when you're walking on the sun, it's that hot - Jeff gives them two minutes to grab supplies and get off the boat. There are fruits, chickens, fish traps, tools, building materials, cooking materials everything you would need to live comfortably out there, but of course, there's not enough for everyone. So, what we get is a mad scramble of people grabbing everything they can.

The most exciting part of this is when a chicken goes overboard, Caleb jumps out and actually fetches it. Congrats, you just spent more energy catching that bird than you'll get from eating it. Anyway, it's pretty much an according-to-Hoyle marooning and once Jeff calls time, each raft heads out to its respective beach. Over the course of the opening, we met about half the cast. To sum it up, they all have what it takes to win and their life experiences up to this point have prepared them all for what's about to happen. Cue the opening credits!

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