Last fall, well after production wrapped on Survivor Heroes vs. Villains, a boot list was posted online, appearing on Survivor Sucks in mid-October. It accurately identified the 11 cast members who were voted off up to JT.
But it kind of fell apart after that, predicting someone else was going home in 9th place instead of Amanda, who left last week. A modified version of that boot list, however, showed up before this season started airing, and that list has been accurate so far. It mirrors other spoilers that have been floating around, and if you want to know details, there are things like True Dork Times’ spoiler-filled run-down of tonight’s episode.
In other words, if you want to know how the season plays out over the final three episodes, these boot lists are a pretty safe bet.
The most amazing part about such accurate spoilers is that everyone involved in the show signs pretty extensive confidentiality agreements; the cast members’ contract says they’ll be fined $5 million for revealing anything about its outcome in advance. I wrote about how reality shows keep their secrets four and a half years ago for msnbc.com, and in that story, quoted Amazing Race producer Bert Van Munster who said that, “We have actually had people sign confidentiality papers in countries where $10 is a fortune”; that show’s fine is $10 million.
Clearly, this $5 million fine is meaningless when held up against the incestuous Survivor community who talk among themselves so much that may have impacted this season’s game play.
Or perhaps CBS just doesn’t care about enforcing it because the boot lists don’t get wide enough play to have an impact on the ratings. Like The Bachelor‘s producer thinks, maybe spoilers are “just more promotion” that keeps die-hard fans addicted and stays off the radar of most of the millions who watch every week.