So Jeff Probst is the dimpled host of “Survivor” and he’s been hosting and
making a ton of money (almost rivaling Ryan Seacrest’s recent boon of 60
million from Clear Channel) since 2000. I am only a recent visitor to the
show. My wife and I enjoy watching it with her awesome Aunt Susie and Uncle
Well last night Jeff looked like someone had insulted him in the highest
order. Someone insulted his show. Two of the younger female contestants
(this season billed as old versus young) announced early in the show they
were quitting. After one challenge (usually the show has two) the girls
told Jeff in person who then proceeded to barrage them with a series of
“you’re quitters” comments concluding with telling them they had the day to
think about their decisions but their final announcement would have to be
tonight during tribal council.
The whole point of the tribal council is to have a big court hearing where
Jeff stirs the pot and gets the contestants to accuse and defend each other
so that they then can vote and decide which one needs to leave. This
council, however, was Jeff continuing his tirade against the two contestants
and getting the other players to yell at them as well. You either felt
completely sorry for the two or were equally angry at them for quitting.
The whole structure of last night’s show made me think that Jeff might be
tired of own show. It’s paying him well, but now he’s seeing the players
aren’t the same type of driven people he’s seen in the past. He said as
much during his barrage of scorn. Also, the show last night featured a
shameless, SHAMELESS plug for the new Jack Black movie. Not only did they
STOP THE SHOW to show a commercial for it, but the players were then asked
to talk about how great it was. Jeff asked them what they thought and the
contestants elicited such praise that Siskel and Ebert would never endorse.
It would have been great if after Jeff asked how the movie was the people
said, “It was okay. Looked a little contrived.”
Reality shows are now almost completely infomericals. Last night was
definitely a testimony to that from one of tv’s biggest shows.
Are any of you going to stand for that? Or is time to quit “Survivor” and
all these staged reality programs?