Survivor challenge rehearsal footage argues that it looks simple but is “tough”

A challenge we’ll see on tomorrow night’s Survivor Nicaragua has been previewed online via footage of the Dream Team’s rehearsal of the challenge, which tries to make the argument that the challenge is not as easy as it looks. Jeff Probst even says at one point that it’s “simple in concept but tough to do.” (Like bowling? Oh, I kid the challenge team.)

While this is no Spit it Out, the amazing immunity challenge from episode five, Push Me Pull U was designed by former Dream Team member Edwin Davis, and involves holding a pole by pulling away from it on two handles. Like Probst’s comment, CBS’ web site description of the video says that “trying to keep a pole suspended between two metal bars may be trickier than it appears.” However, a camera operator participating in the challenge insists “this is easy,” and a tie is called after more than an hour so the crew can break for lunch.

I’m being too hard on the challenges: endurance challenges are good, and sometimes the simplest ones are the most memorable, like when they’re just standing on pylons in the middle of the water, offering to strip for peanut butter.

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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, 37, 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.