Survivor post-finale: women take credit for strategy; no changes to Redemption; bid on Probst’s shirt; more

Here’s a round-up of news and other information that came out following Survivor Redemption Island‘s Sunday finale, which ended with Boston Rob’s victory and the announcement that next season will repeat most of this season, from Rob’s thoughts about his competition to details about how the game might change next season.

  • Jeff Probst told EW’s Dalton Ross that Redemption Island won’t change on Survivor South Pacific because “it’s too soon to tweak Redemption Island in any major way. So many things could have played out differently.” He adds that “It is also unlikely anyone will ever dominate Redemption like Matt did.” Probst does say, however, that they may thin Redemption Island by the end: “The only question I have is should we end the season with 8 people again or should be lose more people from Redemption Island as we go. So when we have a 3 person duel, the bottom two would be sent home and only the winner remain.”

    I agree with Probst that Redemption Island has the potential to play out in a very different way, but I also think it should end at the merge. That’s a returning player’s best possibility to enter the game and not just be targeted by the same people who voted them out in the first place, and it leaves the rest of the season to actually have reward challenges again.

  • In an interview with Reality TV World, Ashley and Andrea said they knew about Rob’s immunity idol at the merge, when he told them. They also take credit for some of their alliance’s strategy. Ashley said, “A lot of the times, the people that we voted out, it was our idea. Was it made to look that way? No, but that’s how it was.” She says that blindsiding Matt the first time “was brought up upon by me, Grant, Natalie, and Rob. That was not just like a one person thing.” In other words: Rob wasn’t the tribe’s strategist, they say.
  • Rob responded to criticism that it was easy for him to win against this season’s cast by telling reporters, “I had a huge target on my back, and I had to re-invent myself in the way that I played the game. I had to use my ability and my experience that I had in the past to try to help me at the same time realizing that maybe it’s a hindrance. I was able to do it, and I was able to last 39 days. At the end of it all, I was able to get all of them to vote for me. So, I mean, if they want to try to take something away from me, go ahead, but the check is in my account.”

  • The “rites of passage” or “fallen comrades” montage–whatever you call it, it’s the part of the finale when the final four remember and reflect on those who’ve been voted out–was cut for time, but you can watch it online.
  • As part of the season-end charity auction of props from the show, which this season benefits both Operation Smile and The Alliance For Children’s Rights, a shirt Jeff Probst wore on an unknown season is being auctioned off. It’s a blue, long-sleeved North Face shirt, and as of 10 a.m. ET, the winning bid is just $112.50. (The shirts Probst wears are modified and dyed.)
  • Jeff Probst tweeted an amazing photo: Rob Mariano endorsing his $1.1 million check before depositing it at the bank on Monday morning.
  • Sunday’s finale destroyed The Celebrity Apprentice in the ratings, with more than twice as many viewers and significantly more viewers ages 18 to 49. It also dominated as Sunday evening’s most-popular show.

    However, Media Life notes that in 18-49, the finale was “down 2 percent from last fall’s finale,” which was Survivor’s lowest-rated finale ever. That makes Boston Rob’s win the lowest-rated finale yet.

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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.