Kathy quits Survivor after having a breakdown

Note: Survivor Micronesia aired last night, Wednesday, as a result of tonight’s basketball game (the show will also not be on at all next week). I’ve heard from a few people who wondered why I posted about tonight’s episode early; sorry if the results got spoiled, and alas, I don’t have advance access to the show or its results. If you missed the episode, you can watch it online.

For the second week in a row, a contestant left Survivor Micronesia without being voted out at Tribal Council. Kathy Sleckman quit the game after having an emotional breakdown. After a rainy night spent in a rat- and bat-infested cave, she flipped out, crying and telling everyone, “I can’t be here one more minute. I can’t take it.” She also said that she could no longer feel her family, whatever that means.

While Jeff Probst isn’t usually fond of quitters, he was compassionate and led her away. I kind of wanted to see what happened afterwards, when she realized she wasn’t going to get to fly home immediately, as contestants are all sequestered until the game is over.

Kathy adds to the unprecedented number of people who’ve either quit or left the game this season. Last week, Chet gave up and told his tribe to vote him out, just as Jon Dalton did the first week. And also last week, Jonathan Penner was forced to leave due to his injury. In other words, four of the nine people who’ve left have done so essentially voluntarily or been forced to leave outside of Tribal Council.

Overall, the favorites seem destined to win, as they’re just steamrolling over the fans. Of the seven people who’ve actually been voted out, only two have been favorites, and those two eliminations occurred when the tribes hadn’t yet been mixed up. Although there’s been talk of the favorites turning on one another, they seem more content to go after the fans.

In the meantime, the fan/favorite interaction has provided for some entertainment. Last night, Ozzy trained Erik, who is in awe of his Survivor idol Ozzy. Cirie compared them to the father and son in The Lion King, and said Erik “just worships the ground that he walks on.”

At the reward challenge, the editors had some fun showing both Erik and Ozzy eating bananas in a slow, suggestive manner while Ozzy said, “He’s like a wide-eyed kid in a candy store. It made me feel proud that we were able to win and bring him in and let him experience this.” Erik may be in luck, as Ozzy has shared his banana with reality show contestants before.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.