‘Survivor: Second Chance’ Premiered and All is Right in the World

survivor cast

You can keep your football, pumpkin spice lattes and foliage tours (wait, actually gimme that latte…); you know how I know it’s fall? Because SURVIVOR premiered last night! That’s right ladies and gents, Jeff Probst is back with 20 money hungry castaways who have already played the game once before and are looking for a second shot at the prize money. Welcome to Cambodia – Second Chance!

Last May, fans of the show were able to vote on which cast members they wanted to see partake in another quest for the hefty $1 million loot bag, and this cast has some of the best losers in the show’s history. For those who missed last night’s premiere (and haven’t been listening to every single episode of Rob Has A Podcast) (Yes, I know I need to get a life thankyouverymuch), the tribes are broken down like this…

On the Takeo tribe:

Vytas Baskauskas – from Survivor: Blood vs. Water
Spencer Bledsoe – Cagayan (Brains, Brain, Beauty)
Terry Dietz – Panama
Abi-Maria Gomes – Philippines
Woo Hwang – Cagayan
Peih-Gee Law – China
Shirin Oskooi – Worlds Apart
Jeff Varner – The Australian Outback
Kelly Wiglesworth – Borneo
Kelley Wentworth – San Juan del Sur (Blood vs Water 2)

And on the Bayon tribe:

Joe Anglim – Worlds Apart
Jeremy Collins – San Juan del Sur
Ciera Eastin – Blood vs. Water
Stephen Fishbach – Tocantins
Tasha Fox – Cagayan
Kimmi Kappenberg – The Australian Outback
Kass McQuillen – Cagayan
Keith Nale – San Juan del Sur
Monica Padilla – Samoa
Andrew Savage – Pearl Islands

If you’re a die-hard nerd like I am, you know that this Survivor Second Chancecast list is epic for many reasons. To start, many of these cast members came close to winning, making it as far as the Final 2 or 3 in their original seasons. Having gotten so close to the money, a second chance means the world to them, and (hopefully) they’re willing to claw, bite and scratch in order to win it big this time around. Adding to their already insatiable desire to win, drama queen firecrackers like Abi-Maria, Kass and Kimmi are sure to keep things spicy. This season also packs the alpha males in like sardines. Having fan-favorite macho-men Terry, Andrew, Jeremy and Joe on the same season? Very impressive!


Since I thought about Second Chance literally all summer until my head spun from excitement (yeah, I get it, I already called myself a nerd! I am willing to add “loser” to my bio as well), it’s about time I stick to the plan and dish out weekly posts that will hit every Thursday. I’ll be chatting about all the insanity that unraveled the night before – crispy rice, nude beach jaunts, and all!

What these posts won’t be is a play-by-play recap of the episode or a full-on review. (For those, your best bet is to check out Dalton Ross’s stuff over at EW.com.) Here, I’ll be chatting up a storm about the crazies and drama as if we were slugging a 12-pack and obsessively bullshitting about the best reality show on television. These posts may get as chaotic as a Kass vote at Tribal – I’ll be ranting, raving and examining the weekly highlight reel…like Kelley Wentworth finding the first hidden immunity idol last night! So let’s start riiiiiight abouuut there.

(Keep in mind that these posts will also have spoilers from the episode, and are intended to be read after you have seen the episode. Good? Good!)

kelleywThis season’s hidden idols are going to be hidden at the challenges and OMFG THIS IS THE MOST AMAZING THING EVER. Castaways will find clues telling them the location of said idols, and it’s up to them to make the super risky play of going for it mid-challenge while trying not to get caught. (PS – this is exactly why a series like Survivor has so much longevity – it never fails to innovate and reinvent itself. Bonus cookies to you, Senor Probst).

The back-and-forth editing of Joe and other-Kelly sweating it out mid-challenge to Kelley Wentworth constantly glancing back at the idol location created some beautiful will-she-or-won’t-she tension. Thankfully for us – she did. Points! Kelley (with two e’s) is definitely one of the castaways I’m rooting for the most. It will be very interesting to see how some of these former Blood vs. Water peeps play without their loved ones tethered to them like a sinking, doomed anchor.

New school vs. Old School. A lot of talk last night (especially during Tribal) was about the dichotomy between  players who have played recently and those who played 10-15 years ago. The game sure has changed – strategy starts from the first minute these tribes step foot onto that sandy beach, and not after the merge, as in the early seasons. Can Jeff, Kimmi, Andrew, Kelly, Terry, and the other old schoolers hack it? Or are their torches already snuffed before Jeff even calls for voting to begin? Time will tell. I’m rooting for a lot of them, though. I’d like to see Andrew and Jeff do well, among others, but the different schools of play will definitely be a recurring theme throughout – and will hopefully be mentioned in a Final Tribal speech or two.

Abi-Maria still sucks, despite all of her half-assed efforts to not suck as hard. Yup.

kassI am pumped to see so many Cagayan cast members return. And yes, even Chaos Kass. I LOVE CHAOS KASS. I get that she’s a very polarizing character, but she just doesn’t GIVE A FUCK, you guys. She will do anything she wants to at any given moment, completely disregarding her alliances, her tribe’s well-being, world hunger, future grandchildren, and everything else under the sun. (Again, she DGAF!) She’s unpredictable, like those goats on the Internet that fall down all the time or Miley Cyrus. But Brains vs. Brawn vs. Beauty was such a great season, and having Kass, Tasha, Spencer and (I GUESS) Woo back is a very awesome thing.

I’m not so pumped to have Kelly Wiglesworth back. Season 1’s runner-up just doesn’t seem to have the same drive. She isn’t very animated (perhaps entirely due to plastic surgery) and doesn’t really seem to be having it. All her answers to Jeff flatline before she’s even finished speaking. I hope she can get back into game mode and do some damage, but after just one episode, I’m already sort of meh about her. At the very least, I hope to stay awake every time she opens her mouth.

No really, Abi-Maria is INSANE. So never hide her weird jewelry that she probably shouldn’t have brought to fucking Survivor anyways. K?


Need a back rub?

Adios to “smarmy” Vytas. Gotta love Shirin. The girl is well articulated and hits the nail on the head every time. Vytas IS smarmy! Maybe he just tried too hard, too fast with his social game, but it came off as kind of creepy. Add in his yoga master prowess, and he sort of turned into a mash-up of last season’s Vince Sly (the feather guy!) and a used car salesman. I can’t say I was sorry to see him go, but I do feel his “I’d rather have not gotten picked at all than be voted out first” thing. That is a bummer dude. (But still…adios muchacho.)


Check back every Thursday for some sort of Survivor shenanigans! Til then, who are your early faves? Do you love this season already? Is Jeff like a fine wine that only gets better with age? Let’s talk about all the things forever.

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