March Madness basketball put ‘Survivor‘ on pause so I decided to do a special post this week. To commemorate this 20th anniversary edition of Survivor I decided to pick my FAVORITE moments from the past 19 seasons.
The task was much harder than I expected. I spent a ton of time arguing with myself over what qualities a “Survivor moment” must possess in order to be my favorite. My criteria? To be a real moment, I decided it must include stand out experiences from the season, moments that every Survivor fan remembers, and they need to make you laugh, cry, or throw something at your TV. Some seasons were a no brainer (duh season 1) and some were really tough (cough, Gabon, cough). Feel free to discuss below and let me know your favorites.
Ladies and gentlemen, please behold my favorite moments from the last 19 seasons of Survivor.
Season 1 Borneo: Snakes in the grass.
I would be forced to slap myself in the face if I did not pick Sue Hawks “snake/rat” final jury speech in season 1. Sue hammered into Kelly and cemented herself into TV history with the most GENUINE and vicious speech in reality TV.
Season 2 Outback: Man down!
Mike Skupin falling into the fire is the moment I think of every time someone mentions this season. This was the worst injury anyone has ever had on Survivor and Skupin was cheated out of his chance to play. I vote Mike Skupin for next all stars season!
Season 3 Africa: Spill the beans!
In the first episode, Clarence steals the beans at camp and tries to hide the empty can. Silly Clarence. The whole tribe finds out, rips him apart and continues to school him on proper morals and ethics.
Season 4 Marquesas: Purple is my favorite color.
Pasqual is subjected to the most horrific vote-off anyone could ever imagine. Let me frame the situation; Neleh and Kathy each received two votes at tribal council forcing a tie. Jeff gave the group (Neleh, Kathy, Vacepia & Pasqual) 2 minutes to come to a consensus on whom to vote out. Two minutes passed and no consensus was made, therefore Jeff passed out a bag of rocks to everyone but V (who had immunity) and whoever got the purple rock was voted out. Pasqual pulled the purple rock and everyone at home fell off their Lazy Boy recliner. Oh the humanity!
Season 5 Thailand: Who’s your Daddy?
No matter how many seasons of Survivor is played, this will be one of my top favorite moments for the rest of my life. The challenge was called “Pirates booty” and it was the first time contestants were allowed to physically touch each other. They had to steal “booty” from the other tribes boat and carry it back to their own. On the pathway, there was an “attack zone” where contestants were allowed to throw down and beat up the other tribe members. Robb (with two b’s) took this opportunity to choke out Clay and toss him like a rag doll. Agro fight club at it’s finest.
Season 6 Amazon: Girls rule boys drool.
Since this is my season I have a tie for my favorite moment. The first favorite moment was the season being boys vs. girls. This was the first time on ANY reality show the teams were split up into gender. The girls’ camp was the crappiest we have ever seen and the boys were living in the equivalent to the Playboy mansion. Despite this we still kicked the boys butt at the first challenge and forever cemented in history that girls rule! The second moment is obvious, it is the peanut butter and chocolate nudity. That is still some of the best peanut butter and chocolate I have ever had.
Season 7 Pearl Islands: Liar, liar pants on fire.
Johnny “Fairplay” Dalton manufactured a lie about his dear grandmother dying in order to win a challenge. This is one of the best villain moments of Survivor ever! This lie was pre-planned, evil, and perfectly played out.
Season 8 All Stars (original): Can’t we all get along?
This season held so many great moments for me, like Boston Rob proposing, Sue and Hatch rubbing on each other, Big Tom laying into Rob, etc. The moment that fits my qualifications and stands out the most is when Boston Rob stabbed Lex in the back so hard that I bet he is STILL healing. Amber was traded like cattle to the Mogo Mogo tribe and Boston Rob was scared she would not return. So, at the next challenge, Boston Rob asked Lex to save Amber and if Lex pulled through, Rob would protect him. Lex obeyed, got rid of Jerri instead of Amber, the tribes merged and Rob knifed Lex just like we all expected. This was a total evil moment and we all loved it at home. And the fact that Rob told Lex to his face before tribal council that he was going home made it even more delicious.
Season 9 Vanuatu: She gives good face.
The moment that pops out to me for this season is Eliza and all her facial expressions. The woman is queen of working the face, just like Sponge Bob Square Pants. Every tribal moment was enhanced when the camera flashed to Eliza working the facial expressions.
Season 10 Palau: Howdy lone ranger.
Stephanie proves she is one of the toughest females to ever play the game by outlasting every other member of her Ulong tribe.
Season 11 Guatemala: Hope you brought your walking shoes.
This season started with a bang, a big bang! The tribes landed on the beach and were immediately told they would need to walk 11 miles, YES 11 miles to camp. The first tribe to arrive received flint to make fire and also got the nicer camp. This immediately put the Survivors in check and let the views know how tough the game really is.
Season 12 Panama: Where can I charge my blackberry?
In my eyes, Shane is one of the greatest Survivor characters to ever live. He is outrageous, honest, and does not give a shit about what people think. Between Shane struggling to quit smoking on a reward challenge and crafting a fake wooden blackberry to answer emails, this guy delivers. I was sad to see he was not chosen to play this season.
Season 13 Cook Islands: Captain we have a mutiny!
Jeff gave the Survivors a chance to mutiny off of their tribe on this season. Everyone at home was going “there is no way anyone is going to do that”. Well we were wrong and found out Candice has balls of steel. She mutinied off her tribe and propelled herself into a slot for this season.
Season 14 Fiji: I will crush your dreamz fool.
Dreamz was a polarizing character on this season. In the reward challenge for the car, Dreamz convinced Yau Man to let him win the car. If Yau Man let him win the car, Dreamz promised he would save him in the game and give him immunity if needed. Dreamz wins the car, and then decides to NOT give Yau Man immunity at the next tribal council. Poor Yau Man is sent packing. This was the ultimate betrayal and everyone watching at home was shocked beyond words.
Season 15 China: Is that two idols in your pocket or are you just glad to see me?
Not one but TWO immunity idols ended up with James and he decides not to play them at tribal council. James gets voted out with two idols in his possession and is back on this season for revenge.
Season 16 Micronesia: Duped and scooped.
Erik, the ice cream scooper, gets so played so hard that he just melts away into the sunset. The ladies convince Erik to give his immunity to Natalie and he agrees. As a big fat thank you, the women proceed to vote him out. It was so embarrassing that I stopped eating ice cream for a week. More importantly, it proves that I am the only one that can give away immunity and not get the boot. J
Season 17 Gabon: SNORE.
Unfortunately, not one great moment stands out in my mind for this season. If you have one please post it below.
Season 18 Tocantins: I just want to be free!
Tyson was a solid casting choice for this season. He had some of the best one-liners and unique opinions of the game that the viewers have ever seen. And lets not forget that Tyson bared his behind (and a tad bit more) in his homemade toga.
Season 19 Samoa: I will show you, who’s the boss.
This season we were introduced to one of the best and most evil characters in Survivor history: Russell. His manipulation and idol playing skills will go down in history like Tony Danza. I would love to see a tribe with Fairplay, Russell, Tyson, and Shane. I hope the Survivor gods are listening!
I hope you enjoyed my favorite moments from the 19 seasons of Survivor. I’m sure season 20 will deliver some hard-hitting gut-wrenching epic bits of history as well. What is your favorite Season 20 moment so far?