“Survivor” has featured three seasons where returning players have squared off against new players. Of those three seasons, a returning player has won twice…
“Survivor: Guatemala” – “Survivor: Palau” competitors Stephenie LaGrossa and Bobby Jon Drinkard returned to play the game with sixteen new players. LaGrossa made it to the finals but lost to newcomer Danni Boatwright.
“Survivor: Fans Vs. Favorites” – Parvati Shallow and nine other “Survivor” All Stars faced off against ten “Survivor” fans. Shallow defeated fellow All Star Amanda Kimmel at the final Tribal Council.
“Survivor: Redemption Island” – “Survivor” Hall of Famers “Boston” Rob Mariano and Russell Hantz played against sixteen inexperienced players. Mariano went on to get the best of Natalie Tenerelli and Phillip Sheppard in the end.
I asked this season’s new players (and the guy that hosts the show) what that little tidbit means to them…
Jeff Probst: Wow! Very interesting stat. That does say there’s something to experience in this game. I think Rob winning last year is going to make it very difficult for Ozzy and Coach this year. But, if Ozzy can get his game together socially and get in an alliance that will take him to the merge, and then they send him to Redemption? Ozzy can get back in this game and Ozzy could win it. It’s possible.
Whitney Duncan: They already know this game, they’ve done it. They have a big advantage. I think they should help us build our shelter really nice, real pretty, then vote them off.
Rick Nelson: I think we’re fools if we keep them past the first Tribal Council. We need to get them out of there just as fast as we can. They’ve had their chance.
Edna Ma: It’ll be important to get rid of them quickly. My strategy will be to convince my tribemates to vote them off because the jury will be sympathetic to them.
Mark Caruso: It depends on who we’re playing with. If you’re afraid, you’re going to follow somebody, and you’re going to get what you deserve.
Christine Shields Markoski: That statistic means absolutely nothing to me. It has no bearing on my game.
John Cochran: Rob was playing with a bunch of idiots. If Rob was playing with me he wouldn’t have had nearly as much luck. I’m the X-factor here. I’m not going to be star-struck by them. They don’t bring back winning players. That means they’re losers. I see no reason to idolize somebody who’s lost. I have a better record than they do. I’m not going to have stars in my eyes when Cirie gets off the helicopter. Your statistic means nothing. I’m here to break statistics. I’m a statistical anomaly.
Mikayla Wingle: That’s not a good statistic for us. But, if they come into the game and are good people who want to work, let’s keep them.
Stacey Powell: It’s a very telling statistic. And it means we can’t let them get too far into the game.
Elyse Umemoto: That statistic is relevant, but at the end of the day it’s anybody’s game. The game can change in a minute.
Albert Destrade: I think it’s going to be important to communicate that at some point we’re going to have to turn on the returning players. They’re going to be able to charm the jury. It’s important to not let a returner get to the end.
Brandon Hantz: I don’t think it matters at all. It all matters how they adapt to the tribe.
Dawn Meehan: The All Stars need to go early.
Sophie Clarke: I think a lot of that is due, not to them returning, but because they were the best of their seasons. I’ve been reading a lot of “Art of War” and there’s some quote about “A wise man does once what it takes a foolish man a couple of times. “ Parvati didn’t win her first time. She won her second time.
Jim Rice: I think that the fact that All Stars have won two times before makes it very difficult for them to win again. I think it’ll be nearly impossible.
Keith Tollefson: It basically proves that new players look up to them for leadership. They’ve done it before and we haven’t. But the reason they win is because they pull the wool over everyone’s eyes.
Semhar Tadesse: We need to vote them out immediately.
“Survivor: South Pacific” premieres Wednesday, September 14, 2011 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.
More “Survivor” Fun: XFINITY TV sent Gordon Holmes into the heart of the South Pacific to get a first-hand look at the filming of the latest edition of “Survivor.” Be sure to check back for exclusive interviews with the returning All-Stars and host Jeff Probst, behind-the-scenes photos, and Gordon’s personal (and injury-filled) account of what it’s like to compete in an actual immunity challenge.
Any Questions about “Survivor: South Pacific”? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes