It seems like no one I know watches Survivor "anymore." It's like Saturday Night Live. "Oh, I haven't watched that in years."
Yes the last couple seasons I didn't watch too closely 'cause they were getting ridiculous-- especially the challenges. But, I'm telling you this season,which was off to a rocky start, squarely landed as one of the better ones. Now when four cast members leave without getting voted off (two medical, one went nuts, one quit) you could chalk that up to disaster, but actually it stirred things up from the usual machinations. Plus the "dumb" factor. One guy was tricked by a "fake" hidden immunity Idol, and, notoriously, another player (Erik) actually gave up his individual immunity because he was told it would make him look good to the jury for helping someone else (!?). By-the-way, the "angle" of the show was "Fans Vs. Favorites" but that seemed to go the wayside (with the exception of the manipulation of wide-eyed Erik)-- in fact the show succeeded in spite of its "premise." Even the "girls-club" angle didn't bother me: they played it well, and in the end it really wasn't a "girls-club" because only a two-person alliance lasted.
I wasn't necessarily crazy about the "winner" but this season definitely gave the series the shot-in-the-arm it needed to get it to its end-game: supposedly, according to Jeff Probst: 20 seasons, or perhaps a 21st with a super all-star season.
The next (17th) season airs this fall and is set in Africa, this time in Gabon. Now, I will admit that the promo for this next season had me rolling on the floor. It goes.. "Earth's last Eden's.... Gabon is one of the world's last remaining sanctuaries for pure untouched wilderness..." And, so we're taking Survivor to this "untouched" sanctuary-- that sounds like a responsible thing to do !!!
Monday Add: For Survivor watchers, here's the link to the winner on the Early Show (I never watch the Early Show, so I have to catch this on the net too).