This is it. The newest season of Survivor is here. For weeks, the Survivor community has been trying to find ways to cope with the downtime. Some people find solace in re-watching their favorite seasons on DVD, while others begin systematically voting out their stuffed animals.
Elmo, the tribe has spoken.
Indeed, it has been a sad time for Survivor fanatics, bashers, and spoilers alike. But all of that is about to change. Mr. Mark Burnett, the executive producer, needs to keep supporting his $5,000-a-day Twinkie habit, so we are blessed with a new season. What's going to happen? No one knows, except for the entire spoiler community already.
So, let's get this season started. Presenting Survivor: Panama -- Exile Island (now Stephanie & Bobby Jon free!).
Everyone's favorite faux-outdoorsman, Jeff Probst, welcomes us to Exile Island, just off the cost of Panama. During the season, individual players will be banished there, left to fend for themselves. Although they will have no contact with the rest of their tribe, Exile Island isn't merely a sophisticated Time Out station. There's a hidden Immunity Idol in them there hills, which will turn strategy on its head.
For the first time, the 16 castaways have been divided into four different tribes, battling the elements and each other. In the end, only one person will remain to claim the $1,000,000 prize.
39 days. 16 people. 1 Survivor. And a partridge in a pear tree.
Cue the opening credits! Since Mark Burnett didn't deem it necessary to introduce each of the castaways this season, here's a quick rundown.
La Mina Tribe
Dan (52) is a retired astronaut from Massachusetts. He enjoys playing Starcraft online and eating a big bowl of Cap'n Crunch in the morning. As a former astronaut, will his appearance on Survivor be one giant leap for mankind?
Shane (35) is the owner of an entertainment marketing company in Los Angeles. He describes himself as outgoing and witty and reads intellectual boring stuff by George Stephanopolous. Bruce (58) doubles as a Karate Instructor and a high school art teacher in California. Clearly type-casted by Mark Burnett, he loves munching on Doritos corn chips and Snickers candy bars. Terry (46) is a retired Navy fighter pilot who currently works for a commercial airline in Connecticut. Like every other lemming in Noo England, he is an avid Red Sox fan.
Bayoneta Tribe Sally (27) is a social worker from Chicago, Illinois. She enjoys chick flicks, pretty boy actors, and old-skool Nintendo. Can her mad Tetris skillz help her win the game? We shall see.
Danielle (24) is a medical sales representative from Florida. She seems to detest CBS programming with a passion and is part of the 89% of America who reads The DaVinci Code biweekly. Courtney (31) is a performance artist from Los Angeles. She enjoys a wide range of movies, from The Incredibles to Pulp Fiction. When she's not being a crazy Hollywood performer, she likes to read a long, engaging article out of "The Economist." Go figure. Misty (24) is an engineer from Dallas, Texas. Yee haw! She likes chess, green tea, and has a thing for the ex-007 himelf, Pierce Brosnan. Will Misty only live twice or does she has a license to kill?
Viveros Tribe Austin (24) is an author from North Carolina. He's a big Scrabble buff and loves all music except for jazz. An avid watcher of Seinfeld, he hopes to win Survivor and live a cushy lifestyle. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Bobby (32) is a lawyer attorney from the cultural cesspool that is Los Angeles. He likes action movies, loud music, and X-Box. Much like Kel in the Outback, one must wonder if his love of beef jerky end up costing him the game. Nick (25) is into financial sales in Arizona. He's a cable-TV snob, yet another "Economist" enthusiast, an Ayn Rand reader, and is really into Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. You tell me which of these things don't belong. Aras (24) is a yoga instructor from Santa Monica, California. When he's not reaching self-enlightenment during yoga, he spends his time pwning n00bs at Warcraft II.
Casaya Tribe Ruth-Marie (49) is a director of retail leasing from South Carolina. She is a massive cereal enthusiast and enjoys a rousing game of Candy Land. Will Ruth-Marie ever get to the Candy Castle or will she draw the Plumpy Card of Doom?
Cirie (35) is a registered nurse in South Carolina. Although she loves an engaging game of chess, she also likes to make nerds cry during a fast-paced game of dodgeball. Melina (32) is a singer from Tennessee. She loves watching trashy soap operas in the morning while eating Snickers and Pringles. Probably rejected already by American Idol, Melinda hopes to win a cool million on Survivor. Tina (45) is a logging sports promoter and entertainer from Wisconsin. She loves logging sports, Robert Redford, and her Green Bay Packers. Will this cheese head lumberjack cut down the rest of the competition?
Instead of dumping the tribes on some island, we have a much more organized start. The four tribes file onto their spiffy challenge mats and Jeff welcomes them to the game. He immediately tests their superpowers of observation, asking if they notice anything odd about the tribes.
Cirie, noting the three hags around her, decides that they must've been divided by gender and by age. Shane agrees with her. At this rate, this season may turn out to be the most agreeable season of Survivor of all time. Jeff affirms this dangerous assumption (see?), explaining they've been split into Younger Men, Younger Women, Older Men, and Older Women tribes. Wow, what a mouthful.
Cirie's not feeling agreeable, however. She's convinced herself that she's on the wrong tribe and should be with the young women instead. Cirie, sweetie, you're 35. For television purposes, you are old. Now go suckle on the teat of the government program that is Social Security. Austin, everyone's favorite hunky writer, is also disappointed with the tribal breakdown. He went on this show to meet some attractive female twenty-somethings, and now he's stuck in a fraternity.
Meanwhile, Bobby wastes no time naming the tribes. There's the Young Beefcake tribe, in which he is the charter member, the Love Boat tribe, the Golden Girls, and the Spice Girls. Thanks, Bobby. "Beefcakes" is a lot easier to remember than "Younger Men" tribe.