Survivor lowers its age limit to 18 for most states

As it starts casting for its spring 2009 season, Survivor is lowering the minimum age from 21 to 18 for most people. A CBS spokesperson told me today that the change was made simply because “Casting wanted to be able to consider applicants between 18 and 21.”

Previous applications said “contestants must be 21 years or older at the time of application,” but the new application [PDF] says “contestants must be 18 years or older at the time of application, except that if you reside in one of the five states listed below.” Those exceptions are DC and Mississippi, where you have to be at least 21, and Alabama, Nebraska, and Wyoming, where you have to be at least 19.

Why the exceptions? In those five states, “the age of legal majority is over 18. For applicants from those states, they need to be at least the age stated (age of majority) to be considered for the show,” the spokesperson told me.

Next season won’t be the first with contestants under 21. Last season, Frosti was 20, and CBS told me at the time that “producers decided to make an exception for him.” Apparently, they’ve just decided to make that the rule instead of the exception.

Survivor Casting [CBS]

Review: Married at First Sight

Marriage At First Sight

In an era of Tinder and Grindr, instant acceptance or dismissal of a potential partner, or instant sex with another body, Married at First Sight offers the thrill of watching strangers deal with the very basics of relationships.

Beyond the headline-grabbing premise, the series has turned out to be a stripped-down, authentic exploration of something very interesting. Read the full review.

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.