SURVIVORS, READY?!

30 Seasons of SurvivorOK, guys. This is it. One month until Survivor Season 31. The new season premieres September 23rd, 2015 and Cody Clark and I will be posting our rankings of the 30 preceding seasons before that day. That’s right, we’re ranking all 30 seasons of Survivor!

Now, it’s time to get serious about watching and ranking because we need your help!

In terms of ranking: Cody and I will be ranking the 30 seasons as subjectively as possible and then comparing those rankings to a more (admittedly still subjective) mathematical approach. Obviously, I’ll go into greater detail on the show.

But, here’s where you come in … we’d also like to include as much listener data as possible. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO HAVE SEEN EVERY SEASON TO PARTICIPATE. Just email us your rankings to moviestreamcast [at] gmail [dot] com for as many seasons as you’ve seen and we will factor those in.

In terms of watching: Some of you know that I have made a deal with Matt and Liz from The Sci-Fi Podcast that they will watch a season of Survivor for every season of Buffy and Firefly that I watch.

Listener David from Scarborough then said that he would possibly be willing to watch a season of Survivor if I would watch a season of Peep Show. Next, Listener Juan from Houston said he would possibly watch a season of Survivor if I watched the Netflix original series Daredevil. There had also been a lot of talk on the boards here about Game of Thrones, which really got my wheels turning.

Ultimately, David, Juan and Listener Dino from Cleveland each agreed to watch two seasons of Survivor if I would watch the first two seasons of Game of Thrones, the first season of Daredevil and the first season of Peep Show.

MSC co-host William Rowan Jr has also been watching Survivor for the first time ever (because I’m convinced that he can win the game and I was trying to train him) and already watched 2-3 full seasons during the time that I was in Colombia.

Ry, from Geek Cast Live and Movie Podcast Weekly, is a long-time watcher of the show who stopped just a few years ago during a time many viewers refer to as “the Survivor dark ages.” I’d really like to get Ry as a guest on our 30 Season Ranking show and even recommend a few of the newer seasons that he’s missed that are really must-watches.

Even Jason and Andy from Movie Podcast Weekly have each seen a season of Survivor. Jason saw one of the worst. Andy saw one of the best. Neither was sold. If they are brave enough to get involved, this could be really fun.

The reason that I am so adamant about this right now is because I think it will make our eventual 30 season ranking a lot more fun for everybody in the community. I also think that Survivor is one of the best television shows of all time and certainly the best unscripted, non-fiction show. You all know that I love non-fiction. I love real human drama. I was a fan of The Real World from day one for that reason and this show added survival, physicality and one million reasons to stab someone in the back.

Now, the remainder of my comments here will be directed toward Matt, Liz, David, Juan, Dino and Ry, but if anyone out there would like to join the Survivor challenge, just let me know via email or in the comment section below and I will give you recommendations, as well. For instance, Listener Sal, is a championship homework-watcher and I’d love to get someone like him involved. Listeners like Jennifer, Nisu, Vance, etc that are faithful Survivor watchers and aren’t in need of any recommendations, please send me your season rankings.

Matt, Liz, David, Juan, Dino and Ry … I have recommendations for you.

This was extremely difficult. It’s very hard to find that perfect season recommendation. So many start out great, but end weak OR start weak, but end great. And the hardest part is that the best watching seasons are not always good introductory seasons for a new viewer. For instance, Heroes vs Villains is one of the best seasons of all time, but much of that season’s story arc is built on the expectation that you already know these returning characters from their previous games and it’s a little underwhelming and disorienting, otherwise.

For Matt and Liz: I am recommending Season 10, Survivor: Palau and Season 30, Survivor: World’s Apart (“White Collar vs Blue Collar vs No Collar”). I think Matt and Liz will appreciate the gameplay and players in these seasons. We’ve got one old school season and one new school season, which is nice. I chose the seasons I thought they’d like as general TV watchers–over the seasons that I thought Matt could relate to as a potential game player–because I think you have to grow to love the show before you can think about playing it. And Matt is another person that could really play this game. I have two totally different recommendations for Matt to watch after he falls in love with the game (like I know he will) so that he can see how his own organic set of social skills could win him a million dollars, but lets start here.

For David and Juan: I am recommending Season 8, Survivor: All-Stars and Season 10, Survivor: Palau. These are good, solid, foundational seasons. They are both old school–which I do regret–but taking survival, Lord of the flies social dynamics, and physical challenges into account, I think these are amongst the most balanced. They are also just damn good seasons that show two totally different approaches to the gameplay and a good base to understand (and hopefully appreciate) the show. However, do keep in mind that the strategic gameplay has stepped-it-up a few thousand notches since this time. These are classic seasons and I think after you watch these you’ll be ready for some fast gameplay recommendations–hopefully deeply entrenched in your newfound fandom. These are also amongst the same seasons that I started William out on, just FYI.

If William does end up reading this, I’d recommend Season 19, Survivor: Samoa, Season 20, Survivor: Heroes vs Villains and Season 22, Survivor: Redemption Island for his next ventures in to strategic training.

For guys like Dino and Ry who have watched in the past, but not recently, I had much more trouble narrowing it down to less than 6 must-watch seasons.

Ry, you need to check out some of the excellent past few seasons that you’ve missed. I think you’ll most enjoy Season 28, Survivor: Cagayan (“Brawn vs. Brains vs. Beauty”) seeing as you were a Russell Hantz fan. There are a few players on this season that play every bit as hard as Russell did and this is a fun one. Also, Season 27, Survivor: Blood vs Water is a must-see! You’re going to love it. If you like those, also check out 25 and 30. You won’t be disappointed.

Dino, the two seasons I chose for you are to illustrate 1) what a new school season can look like and 2) just how much the game has been flipped on its head in recent years. Dino, please enjoy Season 20, Survivor: Heroes vs Villains and Season 27, Survivor: Blood vs Water. Both seasons have several players you’ll know and several players you don’t, but this new level of gameplay should have your head spinning. Especially BvW. Make sure you watch that one with your wife!

If you catch the bug again and want more, watch Season 25, Survivor: Philippines, Season 16, Survivor: Micronesia (“Fans vs Favorites”), Season 30, Survivor: World’s Apart (“White Collar vs Blue Collar vs No Collar). Even Season 19, Survivor: Samoa and Season 22, Survivor: Redemption Island are worth watching eventually. As I mentioned to you before, there are several seasons you could skip between Fiji and World’s Apart, but most of these I’m recommending here are better than most of the seasons you’ve ever seen.

Again, I cannot overstate how difficult it was coming up with just two season recommendations for each of you. For the new viewers, I feel like you need to watch four–minimum–to really get the big picture. But, I will take what I can get.

For watching: David (and others overseas), I don’t know where you can watch these seasons. For those in the U.S. you can find Seasons 20 and under on DVD. Hulu Plus and Amazon Prime are streaming most of these for free for subscribers, but you’ll want to check the details. CBS also has an “all access pass” where you can watch every CBS show ever for about $15 a month. That might be the best option for the old school seasons.

My final note is that the real fun of this show, in my opinion, is not just in the passive viewing, but in getting involved in the strategy. Really trying to figure out what the best moves are and what you would do in the situations. For those that want the best experience, I’m going to provide links below to some great companion podcasts that will really light the fire of strategic interest. You are all smart people that I respect and I believe any smart person that watches a full season of Survivor will enjoy Survivor. I’m sure this sounds ridiculous and cliché, but I honestly envy you and wish I could watch some of these seasons again for the first time.

Hit me up with any questions. Get me your rankings if you have them. Now, get busy!

Happy watching!

Josh

103 thoughts on “SURVIVORS, READY?!

  1. As I sit in my cracked leather chair, readying myself for the day’s work, I reflect on all things Josh I’ve come to know in my life. The music, the laughter, the drive… It’s as I think on these things that I feel a swell in my chest, a burning desire to be there for this man who only wants the best for me, for everyone.

    Slowly I find the distance between my body and the desk growing; I’m standing. No, I’m RISING. To my feet, slowly but with great purpose, I stand. Thoughts of hope flood my mind, adrenaline begins to seep from sleeping chambers within my body, ready to burst forth on demand.

    Suddenly I begin clapping, softly at first but then more rapidly as I gain further appreciation for one man’s quest to convert his brethren and show them the lighted path. The clapping is not enough, so I bounce rhythmically to a churning, steady beat from a beach far off in the distance, an island of mystery and depth and challenge.

    And then I hoot, and I holler, and I grow rowdy, barking at the early morning, defying any opposition, demanding even that the sun stay behind the black and sleeping mountains of Utah lest it come up against ME!

    Inside my soul a survivor is born. Built from the nothingness of the universe, now a poison dripping from the fangs of desire, my resolve has steeled in mere moments upon absorbing the potent and blissfully honest writings of one Joshua Ligairi. And it is good. It is fire. It is purpose. IT IS NEED…to be a survivor. To WATCH Survivor.

    As I abandon my office, stripping off my suburbanite trappings in search of the nearest loin cloth, I can hear the beat of the drums, smell the tiki torches aflame in a naturally lit circle, and I know I’m coming home.

    Sure, I’ll give it a shot. But remember dude, Buffy.

    • Geez, I hope you like it. This could be a bit disappointing for you, otherwise.

      But, I appreciate it.

      And, yes, I will begin watching all of my promised shows right away and spend much of the MSC episodes in November talking about my experiences (September will be all Survivor and October is for horror). I’d love to come on TSFP for some Firefly coverage as well, when this is all said and done.

      • “And, yes, I will begin watching all of my promised shows right away and spend much of the MSC episodes in November talking about my experiences”

        Could you give us little teases and snippets of how you’re getting on with the shows, Josh? I’m sure we’re all anxious and curious.

        • Let me think about that, David. Some people (like Juan) hate to hear “spoilers” about what we think of things before the shows. I will definitely give you some kind of update. I’m going to do a big Game of Thrones feature on MSC and we just figured out that I will be talking Buffy on both TSFP and HMP. More news on the others as I figure things out.

  2. Alright, it’s on… let’s do this!

    I’m down with your recommendations for me, Josh. Heroes vs Villains and Blood vs Water sound like the AVENGERS and AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON of the SCU (Survivor Cinematic Universe).

    • You may very well be right about that. I think you’ll like them. I KNOW Blood vs Water will awaken your interest in the game. It is so different and the strategy becomes very complicated. Watch Heroes vs Villains first, though.

    • BTW, I’ve watched the premiere episode of many of these seasons to see what I was getting people into and although the first ep of Heroes vs Villains is a bit dry due to several injuries and a lame first boot, it really reminded me how great this season is. Can’t wait for you to watch it.

  3. I wasn’t even going to click on this thread, but I’m glad I did. I knew Josh was a big fan of the series, but this was some hardcore SURVIVOR geekdom being shown. That’s actually a good thing because with that excitement and basically stating that every other person on the earth is watching at least one season, makes me want to take part in it as well.

    I have seen SURVIVOR a bit in the past. It couldn’t have been more than a season or two. The season I remember seeing was the one with Elizabeth, the conservative chick who used to be on THE VIEW. I think it also had the evil witch Jerry (?), who was shacking up with some decent young guy.

    I don’t have Hulu Plus anymore, but I do have Amazon Prime.

    • Yeah, that season is called Survivor: The Australian Outback. And although it is loved by those nostalgic for the early days of the show, I think it is mostly a terrible season, by my definition. Cody and I will argue about this on the season rankings, I’m sure, and I think Dino is a fan. There are some decent characters, some iconic moments and some difficult survival situations, but the strategic gameplay is almost non-existent and the physical challenges suck. Also, one of the most boring finales I’ve ever seen in the history of the show … but I’m getting ahead of myself.

      We’d love to have you, Sal. Give me a bit to think of some good recommendations for you, but I may just end up giving you the same ones as Juan and David.

      • As long as the season is on Amazon Prime, I’m willing to give any season a try. Just realize though, if I end up disliking the season, it’ll forever ruin the series for me.

        So no pressure.

        • Out of the need to find something to watch before going to bed last night, I watched the first two episodes of SURVIVOR: BLOOD VS WATER.

          Does it just reveal I’m a gigantic jerk for being frustrated that a lot of the contestants are struggling with looking out for their loved ones instead of just focusing on trying to win? I HATE it whenever someone makes a big deal out of the other team celebrating a win, thus unintentionally celebrating the possible elimination of a loved one.

          I think I have a bit of a Keyser Söze mentality when I would prefer my loved one to be eliminated right away so that I can be smart and only focus on my own quest to try and win.

          I might try powering through the series just so I can have a little more SURVIVOR knowledge, but I think the other seasons might be more ideal for me.

          • Yeah. Sal, I’ve made a terrible mistake and in doing so, let you down and let myself down.

            I was planning on replying to your post last night, but just got to it today. Full of regrets, because Blood vs Water is a terrible season to start on. For one, it is unlike every preceding seasons. For two, it is full of returning players and depends a lot on knowing their stories to enjoy the drama.

            Damn, damn, damn!

            Ok. What to do here? I’m only going to recommend seasons for you that are streaming on Amazon Prime, as you requested. It’s a little limiting for a first-time watcher. Uh …

            Lets go with either:

            –Season 13, Survivor: Cook Islands where the tribes are separated by race. This is a good one if you are interested in race dynamics and like a good underdog story.

            –Season 25, Survivor: Philippines where three previously medically evacuated players return to play with all new players. This starts our really slow, but turns into a great season.

            –Season 28, Survivor: Cagayan “Brains vs Brawn vs Beauty” I struggle a bit recommending this to you because it is a VERY “new school” season of the show, which can be confusing if you don’t know the old school basics. But the division of the tribes is interesting and I think it’s a fun watch. I’m actually watching it right now.

            • The good news is that it wouldn’t be fair to blame you for my issues with BLOOD vs WATER since I checked out the season on my own instead of waiting for your recommendations. So keep your hairy chin up, you haven’t let myself or Jeff Probst down yet. I may have a cold, black heart, but I’m at least fair.

              Truthfully, I don’t have a problem with half of the contestants being returning players. I somewhat remember Tina from one of the very few seasons I actually watched and due to receiving fifteen minutes of fame, I’ve heard of ones like Rupert. Besides, it does help get to know the contestants when half of them have this one characteristic of being returning stars and the other half being newbies compared to if all of them were just new.

              I’ve enjoyed the two episodes well enough to give another season a chance, it’s just that my only issue is the stupid game play of looking out for your loved ones instead of worrying about yourself. Unfortunately, it seems as if that might be a big element of the season.

              I’m thinking about giving Season 25 a chance tonight. If I dig the season, I’ll shave my head and check out Season 13 afterwards. If I end up disliking Season 25, then you can feel like a complete failure.

          • Sounds good. Remember that 25 takes a few episodes to get going.

            Yes, the family element is exactly what complicates Blood vs Water and why it is so much fun, in my opinion, because it changes the dynamics of everything that came for the 27 seasons before it.

            If you like really brutal gameplay, Keyser Söze style, you may enjoy a Russell Hantz or Boston Rob season. You should try 19 and 22 on Amazon Prime. And eventually 8 and 20 if you get into the show. Those four seasons (in order) are my favorite arc in the history of the show.

            • I watched the first episode of Season 25 and I’m into it. I like the idea of bringing three past stars back on after they were forced to quit the first time due to injuries. I do vaguely remember the whole passing out in the fire guy incident. Having Blair from FACT OF LIVES is nice if for no other reason that it’s one person I automatically know about before watching the show. The fact that within the first minute of the series beginning, a guy is showing off his Frankenstein monster tattoo made it feel like this was the season for me. The addition of some very easy on the eyes girls is not bad either.

              About to watch episode 2 now.

              I imagine this series will work out better for me since there won’t be that logic problem where I don’t understand why people are being so emotional about their loved one being eliminated when if you are the sole survivor and win, your loved one is going to benefit as well. I’d screw over a loved one in a heartbeat in SURVIVOR, but I would share the wealth with them once I get my prize money.

            • While I still have the final three episodes to find some huge issue with, thus far I haven’t had any logical problems with SURVIVOR 25. I don’t always agree with the strategies, but I can at least understand their mindset without throwing my arms up in the air, wondering why they’re basically sabotaging themselves.

          • Sal (and everybody), another failure of mine: You should try to listen to some of these podcasts I mentioned and you’re already so far along, I feel bad. One of the most enjoyable things about the show is trying to figure out what the “right” strategy is and what you WOULD do in a situation as opposed to what you SHOULd do in a situation. One of my favorite podcasters is a guy named Rob Cesternino. he is a former Survivor player and does several podcasts, my favorite being “Survivor Know-It Alls” with fellow former Survivor Stephen Fishbach. These guys are two of the greatest strategists to ever play the game and it is a blast to listen to one of their shows between episodes when you are watching live or, if you are binge watching, watch 2-3 episodes of the show one night and then download 2-3 of the podcasts to listen to the next day and check your strategy against theirs. I love how “wrong” I often am and how much more “right” I have become over the years. I actually listen to several great Survivor podcasts, but this is my favorite. I promise you, it is a good time and it will really make the show a lot more fun.

            Sal, check out this link: Survivor Know It Alls

            And I will post more for other seasons when I have a chance. for someone like Dino who has already watched the show, this should increase you interest by 100 fold.

            • Argh…I went to check out that site and since podcasts are in descending order, I got spoiled for who’s going out next. Not that it’s a surprise who’s going out next before the final four, but still.

          • Really? Ahhh, shoot. They are usually careful about spoilers. In the future, if you are interested, let me know and I will post the eps here individually.

            • Maybe I went to the wrong section, but after clicking on the podcast link, I went to the SURVIVOR tab and clicked on Survivor: Philippines section. Some of the titles are “Survivor Philippines Exit Interview: ____”. It was the last one that I noticed.

              http://robhasawebsite.com/category/survivor/survivor-philippines-survivor/

              On the plus side, since I wasn’t paying as much attention as I could have, I completely missed the reveal of the actual winner in the most recent description.

              Is there a different way to view the podcasts, possibly ascending so I see the earliest ones first before the most recent?

              No real harm though. I was expecting that person to go next with very little concern that they would actually win the immunity to stick around.

              I finished up SURVIVOR 25. I more than enjoyed it, so I’ll be checking out another season tomorrow. If I do have a main criticism, it’s that I didn’t care about the final three, especially since my favorite from episode 1 was voted out just before the final three. The final three players were underwhelming due to none of them excelling much in the game. You had:

              – A player that was good at challenges, but was foolish when it came to making decisions. Someone who survived so long mostly because they stayed out of drama and was never seen as a real threat.

              – A second player who was clearly the best player for their sex at challenges. Seemed like a good person, but did the person out think or out play anyone? Ehhh

              – A third player who absolutely sucked at challenges, had some decent ideas, but they would typically failed. Would be involved in eliminating some HUGE players, but mostly by sheer luck or at the result of their original plan failing. Someone who was insanely lucky to be on a dominant team in the early going.

              Maybe I’m just bummed my favorite lost at the end and I’m unfairly looking at the final three by not acknowledging the good they did.

              I’ll post a more in depth look at the season and the contestants tomorrow.

          • Sal: Everyone in America was pissed when [NAME SPOILER] bombed out of 25 RIGHT BEFORE the Final Tribal Council. I feel like the eventual winner of that season is more deserving than you gave [GENDER PRONOUN SPOILER] credit for being; [GENDER PRONOUN SPOILER] worked it pretty impressively to get to where [GENDER PRONOUN SPOILER] got, and had a savvy alliance with [NAME SPOILER] that worked out pretty well for both of them.

            The other two finalists … eh. I was never that impressed with [FORMER OCCUPATION SPOILER], who lucked into the other finalist’s taking pity on [GENDER PRONOUN SPOILER]. That player was a stone-cold badass the first time around, and did … better than average in 25, even with the benefit of having played before.

            S:25 is a fun season after a slow start that ended well enough. Most of the seasons that get remembered as the “best,” however, have in common that the “right” player won. Season 30, for example, would have been a middle-of-the-pack season, instead of being probably one of the four or five best ever, if the eventual winner had gotten knocked out at any of a couple of early pressure points that could have undone [GENDER PRONOUN SPOILER] game.

            There was a similarly close call in Season 28. That season would have been badly damaged if the right one (and only one) of the final three players hadn’t made it through.

            • Cody, you just became my favorite poster on this board thanks to those amazing non-spoilers thoughts on SURVIVOR 25. Simply fantastic.

          • I aim to please. :-) Half the fun of watching “Survivor” is rooting for the smart/savvy/strong players to win, so it’s imperative to preserve as much enjoyment as possible for people who are coming into this thing cold.

            Although, as Josh said, the episode where we finally sit down and hash this out is going to be crammed with spoilers. Hopefully we can figure out something that works.

          • Sorry, I’m not as clever as Cody.

            ***INITIALS SPOILERS FOR SURVIVOR 25***

            Sal, I think you are pretty right-on in your take on “S” and “L” although I agree with Cody that you are a bit harsh on “D” … I think “D” is an excellent winner.

            Look, if “M” couldn’t close the deal in the challenges WITH an advantage and if he had been smart enough to reassure “D” rather than turning on her, he would have made it to the end, no question. “D” was committed to their alliance until “M” faltered.

            Penner (sorry, I had to write that one because I would hate for anyone to think “P” stood for “Pete-Bro”) was my favorite player of this season and he also could have made it to the end if he’d just said “yes” to “L” and “S” or “yes” to “D” instead of “we’ll see…” You always say yes in Survivor, even if you’re lying. Lying may hurt you down the road, but no hurts you right away. Anyway, while “M” would have been a really fun winner and I was definitely rooting for him, I do think the best player won with “D” which isn’t always the case.

            Oh, and with regard to the podcast spoilers … the problem is that you were looking at EVERYTHING on the site relating to Philippines under the Philippines tag. So, that includes all of the blogs, etc that deal in all of the spoilers. The “Survivor Know It Alls” podcast itself doesn’t have any spoilers in the titles, but there are several other podcasts (like the exit interviews) and blogs that might have a name in the title. Just Google the exact episode numbers in the future and it will take you to the right ep. So, “Survivor Know It Alls Philippines Episode 2” and you can click right to that ep via Google and bypass the site.

            AND, I’ve got something else that is really fun that I want to introduce you to, Sal. It is called a Ponderosa video. When the Survivors are voted out, they go to a resort type place called Ponderosa where they wait out the rest of the game between tribal councils. These videos are a lot of fun because you get to see the voted-out contestants in-depth, post-game thoughts and see them reacclimatize to society by doing things like shave or shower, eat, and weigh themselves. It’s more fun than that sounds.

            Check out Penner’s and Malcom’s for example:

            Penner’s Philippines Ponderosa Video Part 1
            Penner’s Philippines Ponderosa Video Part 2

            Malcolm’s Philippines Ponderosa Video Part 1
            Malcolm’s Philippines Ponderosa Video Part 2

  4. Thanks for putting so much effort into connecting/negotiating with your listeners, Josh. This whole scheme is a great way to keep us diehards involved throughout the Survivor season and in turn to get some feedback from you on shows that we love. It’s brilliant.

    A toast to Josh for being a bloody good chap!

    I will hopefully begin my Survivor journey this weekend. I picked out a couple especially tropical IPA’s just in time.

  5. Just so everybody knows what to expect, Josh and I agree about “Survivor” in many respects. We don’t agree about everything, however, so there’s bound to be some conflict when it comes to deciding which seasons (and players) are THE BEST. As I told Josh earlier, I’m reminded of this moment from a favorite film:

    https://youtu.be/hjjJhtR4Phw?t=2m14s

    • I have no idea what that video is from, but it made me feel bad for that poor leopard. All he wanted was a fair fight, but after his kicked the tiger’s butt, the other animals ganged up on him. That’s totally unfair.

      Leopard totally deserves better than that.

          • Any film of this kind is worth knowing with or without kids. Never let a label detract from your viewing experience. Never.

            Back to Cody’s comment. If Cody is Tai Lung (snow leopard) and Josh is Tigress (South China Tiger), does that mean that the rest of the Furious Five are us, the people? Cody, what makes you think that we’ll side with Josh? I haven’t started my Survivor marathon yet, so I have no idea who I’m going to side with when the gloves come off. Our mutual love for animation is strong though so, that will go a long way in the end my friend. Also, any fan of Kung Fu Panda knows that Tai Lung is not only stronger than any of the Furious Five, but he’s also the bad guy of the movie. Are you trying to tell us something here? I mean, I can definitely see Josh being a bully what his his towering size and all, but those beautiful eyebrows of his give away his teddy bear tenderness in a second. Most importantly though, why is Josh a girl in this scenario?!

            • Better yet, if we’re going to equate that video to SURVIVOR, why would the rest of us bother holding the rope bridge up? I say screw Josh (Tiger) and Cody (Snow leopard) and let them drop. That’s two major players we won’t have to worry about. Hell, while we’re at it, I’d like to be at the back of the crowd so I can push Dino (Grasshopper?) off of the cliff when he’s foolishly trying to hold the rope bridge up.

          • Definitely worth knowing whether or not one has children. Josh is just an animation snob. :-)

            I’m not saying that either Josh or I is Tai Lung, but despite the immediate presence of Tigress in that scene, Tai Lung is actually speaking about Po when he says his “worthy opponent” line. Mostly I’m just thinking of, “The battle will be legendary!” Because we’re going to have some disputes. The listeners, I suppose, can decide whether Josh is Tai Lung, and whether I’m Po, or whether it’s the other way around. The important thing to remember is that, whenever we disagree, Josh is wrong and I am right.

      • Cody said, “Definitely worth knowing whether or not one has children. Josh is just an animation snob.”

        There are a lot of people (Juan, Dino, Cody) reading a lot of negativity into my very neutral comment. This is getting as bad as my Emilia Clarke comment/misstep over on The Sci Fi Podcast. Yes, I may have shown some predilection toward animation snobbery in the past, but I that was not my intent here–at all! Sal was saying that he had no idea what the movie was. I was simply saying that he would know if he had kids. Nothing more, nothing less.

        Sal said, “Sounds like you’re implying Wolfman Josh is the Jay of the Day of Movie Stream Cast.”

        If this is true, I might as well just hang it up. Haha.

  6. ATTN: EVERYONE

    THE FOLLOWING SEASONS OF SURVIVOR ARE AVAILABLE ON AMAZON INSTANT VIDEO, MANY FOR FREE TO SUBSCRIBERS OF AMAZON PRIME.

    FREE ON PRIME:

    –1, Survivor: Borneo ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –3, Survivor Africa ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –12, Survivor: Panama “Exile Island” ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –13, Survivor: Cook Islands ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –14, Survivor: Fiji ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –15, Survivor: China ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –16, Survivor: Micronesia “Fans vs Favorites” ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –17, Survivor: Gabon ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –18, Survivor: Tocantins ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –19, Survivor: Samoa ($14.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –22, Survivor: Redemption Island ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –23, Survivor: South Pacific ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –24, Survivor: One World ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –25, Survivor: Philippines ($14.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –26, Survivor: Caramoan (14.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –27, Survivor: Blood vs Water ($14.99 season purchase without Prime)
    –28, Survivor: Cagayan “Brains vs Brawn vs Beauty” ($9.99 season purchase without Prime)

    ADDITIONAL SEASONS FOR PURCHASE ON AMAZON INSTANT VIDEO (not available with Prime):

    –Season 29, Survivor: San Juan Del Sur ($9.99 for season purchase)
    –Season 30, Survivor: World’s Apart ($14.99 for season purchase)

    • If anyone that I recommended Palau to can’t easily get ahold of it (I’d recommend the free one-week trial at CBS All-Access), you can switch it up and watch Cook Islands instead. Palau is the superior season, but I love Cook Islands too and it is streaming for free on Amazon Prime.

      • Ahhhh … let me take this back. I re-watched the first two episodes of Cook Islands and it is a brutal one to start out on.

        I also watched the first episode of Heroes vs Villains and although it is probably a trying intro for a first-time watch, what with all the references to past seasons, and although it is a boring first boot … this season really sings from the get go.

        I also realized, thanks to Matt, that these older seasons look kind of crappy due to being shot in standard-def. Everything after Season 17 is in HD and they look MUCH better after that. Glorious, in fact.

        so anyway, anyone that I told to watch Palau who can’t find it (Juan, you’re in there) you can find Season 20, Heroes vs Villains for free with a subscription on Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus.

  7. ATTN: EVERYONE

    CBS ALL ACCESS MAY BE THE BEST WAY TO GO FOR U.S. USERS WHO DON’T ALREADY HAVE AMAZON PRIME OR HULU.

    All 30 Seasons of Survivor are available on CBS All-Access.

    You get a ONE WEEK FREE TRIAL when you sign up and then it is only $5.99 a month thereafter. So, you could plan on spending $5.99 and get 3-4 seasons watched before canceling. That’s the route I would go, unless all the seasons you want are already on Hulu Plus or Amazon Prime.

    • Juan AND Matt, this is probably the bet for you guys. With a week for free, you can get it done if you go hard. Juan, if you have Amazon Prime, you could do All-Stars with Hulu and then just switch up to Season 13, Survivor: Cook Islands instead of Palau.

      Matt, you can borrow my Palau DVD. But, you could easily do Season 30, Survivor: World’s Apart “White Collar vs Blue Collar vs No Collar” in a week on CBS All-Access.

  8. Joshie – Just a heads up that I won’t be starting my Survivor seasons until after I’m finished my re-watch of the Scream franchise and SINISTER (ahead of seeing “2” in the theater). So far, I’ve only watched the first Scream, so probably another week before I begin.

    • Just saw your email. Will respond tonight. Speaking of tidbits, you should post your thoughts on the show here publicly. I think it might have a big impact on the others and I’d love to keep any discussion going that we can.

      • I’m nearing the end of SURVIVOR 25 (My boy Malcolm better win or I’ll punch my TV), but I just wanted to know how we should deal with spoilers. When giving thoughts about individual seasons, should we avoid spoilers in case others may watch the season at a later point or is it all fair game?

        • I’d say to just drop a spoiler warning, as usual, when here on the boards like you would with any movie and try to contain your spoilers to small sections at the end of your post. That’s what I will be doing when we record the podcast special.

          Cody and I are going to have to talk spoilers on our special out of necessity (because the winner has a big impact on the ranking), but I’m going to try and split the rankings into tracks, so that you can just skip forward to the next track to avoid spoilers t the end of a season discussion.

          Can’t wait to hear what you thought of Abbi Maria and (one of my favorite players of all-time) Penner. Lots of highs and lows on this cast to discuss, actually.

          • Without bringing up any sort of spoilers, Abbi Maria comes off as one of the most foolish and worst players in SURVIVOR history to me.

            As someone with a vast amount of SURVIVOR knowledge, can you confirm or deny that belief I have about her?

          • I’m glad you said that because I find her maddening. Her logic and attitude makes me want to pull my hair out and scratch my face off. I do think she is great TV, though, and I am interested to see her back. She’s slated for the upcoming “Survivor: Second Chances” season that starts toward the end of September. I initially didn’t want to see her on the cast because there were many better options, but now that she is confirmed, I have to admit that I am interested to see what will happen. She’s a firecracker. And to give you the short answer: Yes, she sucks at Survivor. Bad.

          • Here’s what will happen with Abi-Maria: big fat nothing. She might hang around for a while while the wolves are turning on each other, but I’m pretty sure that she’s not gonna sniff the Merge without a complete personality transplant. Besides L-U-C-K, you need three things to make it in “Survivor”: some degree of physical ability (even it’s just hearty stamina), some degree of mental acuity/awareness (even if it’s just knowing when to keep your mouth shut), and the ability to knuckle under and get along with people even when your overriding instinct is to punch them in the face. Abi-Maria showed a little stamina, but she’s got zero of common sense and double-zero of people skills. Which, as Josh correctly pointed out, can be entertaining to watch in its way. I’m just always *more* entertained by good gameplay than by roadside carnage.

          • I agree with everything you said, Cody. I far prefer someone who can play the game, but we’re stuck with her and I think there may be a silver-lining. Despite her faults (and maybe even because of them), Abbi has the ability to really change up the game. Look at how she changed RC’s game. She is her own worst enemy and that has some potential.

        • To repeat what I said above: “If you like really brutal gameplay, Keyser Söze style, you may enjoy a Russell Hantz or Boston Rob season. You should try 19 and 22 on Amazon Prime. And eventually 8 and 20 if you get into the show. Those four seasons (in order of release) are my favorite arc in the history of the show.” But, you can totally enjoy 19 and 22 without having yet seen 8 or 20, I think.

  9. I think you’ve created a new Survivor fan! I followed your recommendation of Season 8. I sat down on Saturday night with some egg fried rice and an excellent India Pale Ale (selected especially for it’s vivid tropical notes!) and started watching and since then I’ve got through 11 episodes. It’s great! Way more interesting from a socio-psychological standpoint than I expected and I just love all the spear-fishing and shelter building type stuff. I definitely understand why you’re such a big fan of the show. I’d be curious to hear more about what you think of this season as a whole and the individual players. I couldn’t figure Richard Hatch out. I was sad to see Rudy go so quickly. I really dislike Boston Rob and didn’t much care for Colby but I quite like Kathy, Shii Ann and Rupert. Anyway, I’ve got a bunch of podcast listening to do so I’d best cut this short! You take care Josh and thanks for introducing me to the world of Survivor (as well as many other wonderful things!)

    • David, I can’t even begin to tell you how happy this comment made me. Now we just need Juan to get busy! But, you’ve honestly made me really happy here. Nothing gives me more joy than recommending something that I love to people and them enjoying the experience.

      You’re getting all of the varied aspects of the game. I don’t know how to respond to many of your comments other than with a (happy not snotty) I told ya so!

      So, All-Stars was the first season I ever watched too, which is why I know it is a good recommendation for a first-time watcher. I’d recommend you and Sal and everyone who is liking the show, but doesn’t want full spoilers to listen to the new podcast through #25 on our list. We give spoilers, but most those seasons are so bad, very low on both of our lists, that I feel like you can afford to hear those spoiled and not lose much from the story of Survivor. You’ll also get way more insight into what Cody and I value in a season and hear the backstories of our Survivor fandom. I think it’s worth it. There’s only one of those seasons that I’d even recommend watching (unless you are going out to play).

      You said:

      “I’d be curious to hear more about what you think of this season as a whole and the individual players. I couldn’t figure Richard Hatch out. I was sad to see Rudy go so quickly. I really dislike Boston Rob and didn’t much care for Colby but I quite like Kathy, Shii Ann and Rupert.”

      So, I love this season. It is my 2nd favorite overall. Part of me would like to rank first0time player seasons and All-Star seasons with returning players separately because they All-Star seasons dominate my list. I’m very strange in that respect for a superfan–most prefer new players–but I just hate to see people make the same mistakes over and over again. I like advanced gameplay and so I like to see people who have played once or twice before so we can really watch them play hard. Plus, as I mention on the next podcast, I really enjoy the story arcs of these returning players.

      I love Richard, but he is definitely odd. He REALLY reminds me of William Rowan Jr in the way he approaches interpersonal relationships. I wish I’d remember to compare the Movie Podcast Network All-Stars to characters on Survivor during the podcast. That was my intent, but I forgot. The only low point for me with Hatch is when does the rubbing up against Sue thing. It’s not a good look for him and causes her a lot of unnecessary grief.

      I really disliked Boston Rob at first, but the more I thought about him, the more I liked him. He’s probably my all-time favorite player now. He just gets the game on such a higher level than most of the people who have played.

      I didn’t like Colby in Australia or All-Stars, but I do really like him by the end of Heroes vs Villains because he finally gets a personality and shows some emotion.

      I agree that I like Shii-Ann as a narrator, but she doesn’t really do much. Rupert was my favorite character the first time I saw him, but there is a real thing in the Survivor community called “Rupert-fatigue” where his schtick gets a little old by the fourth game. Also, he sucks at the actual game of Survivor for the most part. But he’s excellent as a TV character–one of the best–and there are things I can appreciate about all of his appearances. I have been re-watching Heroes vs Villains for about the 4th time lately. That’s his third appearance and the one where I finally got tired of him, but even now with some distance, he’s still fun to watch.

      Moving on to your next comment below!

      I couldn’t resist, just a bit on William. Most of this will be meaningless to you as of yet, but I hope Cody sees this. So, I think William is naturally a Richard Hatch, but I can see him wanting to play a Russell Hantz style game. If he is doing really well, I could see him getting into Coach territory or starts to lose it, I could see him being in the Shane Powers or Phillip Shepard realm, but if he can harness his inner Richard Hatch, I think he could go far and even approach a Brian Heidick level of gameplay. Someday you’ll know what all of that means.

  10. The following is my hodgepodge collection of thoughts over SURVIVOR 25, particularly the characters. Some thoughts on the characters can be rather long while I may struggled to think of anything to say for others. Just so I don’t have to keep Googling the names of the tribes and how to spell them, I’m just going to refer to them as the Red, Yellow and Blue teams. I’ll try to keep this spoiler free, but there will likely be some minor spoilers, particularly early on. So if you haven’t seen this season and would like to without being spoiled, it may be best to ignore this post for now.

    ~Blue Team~

    Zane – I liked Zane. It’s impossible for me to dislike him since he does have the Frankenstein’s Monster tattoo. He had some good potential to be a decent player, but he tried to play the game FAR too hard in the early going. On day 2, he was acting as if he was on day 30 or something. Horrible mistake and had the blue team been better, he might have been able to last a good deal longer.

    Angie – Oh Angie, completely awful at challenges, overstated her value, but totally worth keeping around just for the eye candy. When you think about it, she’s comparable to Abi, except she has some social interaction skills. As much as I liked her for completely superficial reasons, she’s a great example for why the blue team sucked so hard.

    Russell – I just began Russell’s previous season on SURVIVOR, so I’ll see if I’m wrong about this, but just watching him on season 25, he seemed like a guy who thought he was a master at playing the game when he was a below average player. I do think he may have found some luck at being a central figure in an alliance had he lasted to the merge. Still, all ego with very little backing up.

    Malcolm – My boy. Favorite contestant on the show and once he rid himself of those awful blue team connections, he was able to show what a fantastic player he was. Had he made it to the final three, there wasn’t another player that could have came close to beating him to win it all.

    Denise – I liked Denise and she was the best female contestant in challenges. I’m just now blown away by her outcome when it felt like she was just a background character for nearly the entire season. Seeing as she was the ultimate loser, I’d probably be more satisfied had she won more.

    ~Red Team~

    Jeff – I think Jeff had some serious potential to win it all had things went down different with the yellow team’s alliance’s loyalty. He was in firm control of the red team with Carter as his lackey and for awhile, it looked as if no one would be able to stop him. Red’s poor luck blew that up in such a quick fashion.

    Penner – I liked Penner, although I do suspect being a supporter of Malcolm stopped me from getting behind Penner as much as I could have been. He seemed like a good player, but he never seemed to be in actual control without others waiting to get him out. He may had a legit shot at winning had he had a true one person alliance with someone else like the final four had.

    The Red Team Pre-Merge – Was there even other members of the red team prior to the merge? Man…other than Jeff and Penner, the show ignored the red team for the first several episodes. It’s why I don’t have many thoughts on the other members since we spent so little time on them.

    Carter – It took awhile to like him since he was either Random Red Team Member #6, or he was sitting at Jeff’s feet like a good pet. When it came to challenges, he was pretty great, particularly in swimming based ones. He didn’t seem like the brightest guy, which may be why he hung back as a lackey rather than try and control the game.

    Katie – The red team imploding in such a quick fashion killed any chance of Katie trying to be a major player. I felt bad for her since her failure didn’t reflect on anything she did wrong. It was bad luck left and right. Had the women of the red team lasted longer, the game could have turned out far different.

    ~Yellow Team~

    RC – Boy, did things turn out differently for her than it appeared things were heading at the very beginning of the show. Had she been in the place that Abi was, she might have had a chance at winning. I don’t know what she could have done to regain control when she lost it early on and the first chance she had to try and get away from the yellow team, it was too early in the post-merge for her to survive.

    Peter – He talked a big game as if he was Russell, but he did manage to do one huge thing in killing RC’s chance of ever having a shot at the game. While that did help him gain some solid control of the yellow team, I have to assume he would have lasted longer and had a chance to go farther had he kept RC close instead of Abi. He likely played the biggest role in ruining the control that the yellow team had. In the end, the original yellow members didn’t have a shot to win long before the final three.

    Artis – Stuck with the yellow team alliance for too long. Had he jumped off with Michael and Lisa, he might have had a chance. Then again, he never came off as someone who stood out in any way, shape or form.

    Michael – First off, credit to Michael for just surviving the show. In the early going, it looked as if he’d go home in various pieces due to all of his poor injures. I liked Michael. He’s a really cool guy and I seem to remember liking him from SURVIVOR 2. He was pretty great at challenges, but he doesn’t have the right mind for the game. That was the big strike against him at the end – who did he out think? With a better mind for the game, he may have found more success.

    Lisa – Since I do have a bit of a black heart, I found her “I need to be so loyal~!” trait to be pretty annoying. I get you have morals and values, but you’re on SURVIVOR. Play the game! When she did try to play the game (IE. finding the hidden immunity), it failed miserably. She finally started to get some smarts at the end, but what did it matter? The damage was done. She played a terrible game, awful at challenges and more or less lucked her way through the game. She was responsible for knocking out the two toughest players, but the one came about due to failing in her first attempt at doing something and the second came about at a point when it wouldn’t have mattered which person was in her alliance. She wasn’t going to win. Now, could her strict loyalty be seen as a favorable trait, maybe even a sign she was playing the game in a different manner? Maybe, but she was loyal to all of the wrong people. Had she kept a certain player until the final three, she would have been in such a better position in not only having one person she would clearly beat, but you’d also have to give her credit for positioning things in her favor like that.

    Abi – Without a doubt, the star of the season. What would season 25 have been like without her? She’s a lot like Russell, only a million times worse. She thinks she’s a great player who is controlling everything when all she did was screw things up for herself time after time. Her big ploy near the end was a gigantic failure of epic proportions. Her attitude ruined any chance of a strong yellow team after the merge, which meant victory was seemingly all that easier for a certain blue team member that didn’t actually win. Still, she’s crazy memorable, which is likely why she’s coming back for the latest season.
    —-

    I wish there was more strategy when it came to eliminating certain people not so you have an easier time to get to the final three, but so that the jury would be better in your favor. That may be part of my issue with the final three, they were all too similar with experiences with the jury members.

    • Great thoughts as always, Sal. I’m just going to go through and respond.

      MATSING IN BLUE

      Zane – I also liked the Frankenstein’s Monster tattoo and I had a lot of hope for him as a firecracker in the season, but he popped way too early. He’s the classic example of someone who comes in as a fan of Russell Hantz or Boston Rob and plays “TOO FAST AND TOO HARD” and they send themselves home. You nailed it when you said he was playing “like Day 30 on Day 2.” Ultimately, a pretty terrible player.

      Angie Cookies – For me, Angie represents Survivor at its worst. Hot chick with more in her bikini top than in her head. She’s from my home town, so I can’t totally hate on her, but she shouldn’t have been on Survivor in the first place–and they are actually talking about bringing her back. The best thing about her is that she has an all-time classic line when she says her tribe would be better if they had … cookies.

      Russell Swan – I think everything you said about Russell Swan is right on. In Samoa they dubbed him the “chief” and he completely bought-into that. Russell Swan is another classic Survivor archetype in these guys who are so used to being the boss at work or the badass in their group of friends and they have no self-awareness. You nailed it when you said “all ego with very little backing it up.” Great character to highlight the players who are actually good.

      Malcolm – Definitely one of the best players on the season. Probably my third favorite, which is fitting since he is a Survivor triple-threat: He’s got the mental game, the physical game and the social game all on lock. And actually, his social game is so good, he doesn’t even have to do much with the other two aspects unless he gets in trouble. I prefer the winner we got because I value maturity, but Malcolm is an all-timer. A legitimate Survivor All-Star.

      Denise – You said, “seeing as she was the ultimate loser, I’d probably be more satisfied had she won more.” And I think that is precisely what is so incredible about Denise. She survived EVERY SINGLE TRIBAL COUNCIL. She’s a Survivor and she’s also a triple threat. She wasn’t just the best woman; she was better than the entire Matsing tribe in the water–including Malcolm! She was probably one of the Top 5 athletes on the season and that’s incredible for how tiny she is. But, she’s also whip-smart and good socially. One thing you’re really going to have to get used to with Survivor is winners that seem like background characters. That’s a major strategy for the game. Only the VERY BEST can play a showy game and win at the end. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but wait until you see the ending of Samoa!

      You forgot Roxie and for good reason. I wish I could forget her.

      KALABAW IN RED

      Jeff Kent– I agree with you 100% when you say “I think Jeff had some serious potential to win it all” but only 50% when you say “had things went down different with the yellow team’s alliance’s loyalty.” I think Jeff Kent’s biggest problem was his own obsession with not letting the returnee players get to the end. I think that was short-sighted because nobody on that season was going to vote for a returnee and he could have had a very loyal ally in Penner if he’d just been willing to give him a chance. His own obsession exploded his game.

      Penner – Penner is one of my all-time favorite players and I relate to him more than anyone who has ever played the game. He played his guts out and had a very hard time because of his returnee status, as we mentioned. His only mistake was not committing at the end. As I said before, you always say “yes” in Survivor and he blew it for himself. But, Rachel and I jumped off the couch and cheered when he won that immunity toward the end. I love this guys so hard. And he is a big horror fan too. We gave away one of his books called “Horror Cinema” on an old episode of HMP. Shannon won it, actually. He just wrote a horror movie called The Bye Bye Man that his wife (Stacy Title) is directing for the Weinsteins.

      BTW, I think it’s happening right now in Cleavland, Dino! You should go say hi to Penner and get a behind-the-scenes tour of the horror set!

      The Red Team Pre-Merge – Yeah, not very memorable. Dawson is only memorable for trying to kiss Probst after he snuffed her torch. She also had a REALLY huge advantage in the game, being the only person who knew Jeff Kent was a professional baseball player, and she totally squandered that. Katie kinda sucked. She’d maybe have potential on a better tribe, but ended up being the red teams’s Angie Cookies. Dana also sucked. Seemed cool, but not very charismatic and she got medi-vaced. Carter also seemed like a nice kid, but another dud for the red team in terms of screen presence.

      TANDANG IN YELLOW

      RC – She was really screwed by the whirlwind that was Abi-Maria, but she also didn’t have the social graces to get herself out of it. I think she has a lot of potential and we’ll see her back, for sure. She was supposed to be on Blood vs Water with her dad, but he had health problems right before the game started and was medi-vaced.

      Pete Bro – I think Pete is the best bet for Tandang’s Angie Cookies. What an airhead. I agree with you that he was all talk. Although, like you also said, the idol play at the beginning really had a big impact on at least RC’s game.

      Artis – Totally agree with you here.

      Michael Skupin – Had to laugh when you said “credit to Michael for just surviving the show.” I also like Skupin and think he is a great Survivor icon when it comes to the gusto he brings to the game. But, you’re also right that his strategic game is lacking and he seemed to get on his tribe’s nerves too, so he may not have a great social game either (unless you are a fellow Christian public speaker).

      Lisa – I liked Lisa a lot as a person, but she was definitely frustrating to watch as a player. I thought Penner had her convinced a few times, but to no avail. She had so many great opportunities to make moves that she didn’t take. The supposed “loyalty” was the worst part of her game. That card never works wit the jury. And she was doing it all wrong anyway. The people she was loyal to were not loyal to her. And … I hate to say this, but she cried a bit too much for my taste. But, I’d be down to comfort her. A super sweet lady.

      Abi-Maria – Have to agree with everything you said. Yes, “she’s crazy memorable” and just plain crazy. She sucks at the game, but she makes great TV.

      • Some responses to your great reply:

        – Angie’s Cookies – I felt bad for her for this mental gaffe. It was less of a case of her being stupid and more that she tried to tell a joke and it was the worst possible time for it. I’ve been in that situation before so I can’t fault her much. Now, when I tell a stupid joke when I should be serious, it’s not in the context of a serious game show where one shortsighted joke could get me voted off. I’m sure she was regretting that comment for months afterwards. I did get a chuckle later on in the season when Malcolm won some cookies with one of the rewards competitions.

        – Russell – Just from what I’ve seen in Samoa, it doesn’t appear as if Russell is going to be very good in that season either. Perhaps I’m wrong, but for all of his confidence, he sure didn’t have any reason for it.

        – Denise – To be honest, I am probably underrating Denise solely because she was more of a background player. I do think she benefited greatly for being in the same tribe as so many morons though. She may have been at every single tribal meeting, but when you’re one of the few people with a good head on your shoulders, it seems less impressive that you survived.

        – Roxie – I can’t say I forgot about her. It’s just that literally the only thing I could say about her is that I was glad to see her leave so we had at least one more episode with Angie in a bikini.

        – Jeff – I do think his obsession with not wanting a returning player to win wasn’t the greatest of strategies. Although, it did help form an alliance in his tribe before it fizzled out due to the quick eliminations prior to the merging.

        – Penner – Can’t say I knew that Penner was a horror fan. That alone would have made me a bigger fan of his. That’s cool that he gave you guys a copy of his book to give away as a prize. Shannon won? Shocker. I swear Shannon is the Malcolm of HMP contests. Ha.

        – Dawson – The fact that she never revealed the truth about Jeff was a pretty boneheaded move.

        – Abi-Maria – As bad as she is, I’m looking forward to seeing her on this latest season. Hopefully she lasts long enough to create enough drama.

  11. Off-topic

    I watched CLEANFLIX this morning and I was hoping to share some of my thoughts on the movie and discuss a bit with you, but I couldn’t find an e-mail address or some other obvious means of communication that would be better suited for it.

    So if someone wanted to discuss CLEANFLIX, what would you prefer they do?

    • Sal; I want to see it and I want to discuss it! How did you get a copy? Josh; How can I get a copy? I’d be happy to rent it, buy it, return it, or pass it on.

      • I rented my copy from Vimeo. $2.99 for a 48 hour viewing period (Or pay $9.99 to buy it). If you have a Roku, you can watch it through the Vimeo channel on your TV. I’m sure there’s other ways to stream it to your TV though.

        As someone not familiar with the whole Cleanflicks backstory, I found the documentary to be pretty interesting.

          • I don’t know if you saw, but I ended up sending a bit of a lengthy e-mail to the moviestreamcast e-mail with my thoughts over the movie. Most of it was just random thoughts, but the movie made me think about a lot of things I hadn’t before.

      • Jennifer, you can rent it online a few different places …

        BUT

        … and this goes for any listeners, I will send you a DVD for FREE with an inscription if you send me a rental receipt. I have a box of them sitting around and I would like them to go to people I like. Just rent it on YouTube (or wherever you can find it cheapest) and screen grab your purchase receipt. Then, email that and your address to moviestreamcast@gmail.com and I will send out a DVD, signed if you want. This includes foreign orders, David. the DVD features deleted scenes and a feature commentary by myself and my co-director.

        There are so few of you guys that frequent this site and I appreciate it so much that I’m happy (and probably safe) to oblige. Just to be safe, let’s say the limit is 20 such orders.

  12. So I’m now starting my fifth (!!!!) season of Survivor. I’ve become a bloody addict. Joshua Ligairi, you’re no better than the creepy trench-coated man that offers me crack in the toilets of a local dive bar!

    So far I’ve watched the recommended seasons; All Stars and Palau and then I moved on to Micronesia and Fiji. I’m just starting Pearl Islands now.

    I loved All Stars and Fiji and very much enjoyed Palau but I had a lot of trouble towards the end of Micronesia. I hated that smug dominating alliance towards the end and found very few of the players left in the second half of the season to be at all likeable or have any redeeming features.

    I’ve noticed that amongst fans players like Parvati and Boston Rob seem to be super popular but this baffles me because they’re both exactly the kind of people I just genuinely can’t stand. They just seemed obnoxious, superficial, manipulative and narcissistic to me. I also hated Joel and Natalie from Micronesia. That was a particularly bad season for me with regards to being able to relate to the players but it briefly introduced me to Yau-Man which lead me to seek out Fiji and the players in that season were FAR more my cup of tea. The only people I really didn’t like were Rocky, Lisi and Stacy. Rocky in particular rubbed me the wrong way with his obnoxious, macho attitude. The alliance that took it to the end was the best though. Earl managed to play an incredibly intelligent strategic game without being the most physical of players and without losing too much of his integrity and Yau-Man was just amazing in every respect. Even Dreamz, in spite of his wretchedness, had a genuine charm. And the opposing alliance wasn’t bad either. If there are more seasons with players in this vein then please let me know, Josh. I think when it gets reduced down to a bunch of shallow, young, overly-aware-of-their-own-good-looks types I find it hard to stomach but mix it up a bit with folks possessing actual personalities and integrity and I find it way more interesting. I also love the focus on really basic survival stuff like building shelters and trying to start fires and such which seemed a little glossed over in the later couple of season I’ve seen. Are some of the earlier ones more in that vein?

    And apologies for the horridly disorganised, stream-of-conciousness nature of this comment.

    • And Josh, I’d be really interested to hear who your favourite/least favourite players from these seasons are. From what I can tell my opinions seem to go against the consensus of the Survivor super-fans so I’d be interested to hear your expert analysis.

      • So, this is a pretty weird cast ranking system I came up with just for you, David. I probably should have just done it like Sal’s up above.

        ALL-STARS
        Love – Boston Rob, Richard, Kathy, Lex (but mostly from previous season), Rob C (but only from previous season)
        Like – Rupert, Shii-Ann, Jenna
        Interesting – Rudy, Sue, Alicia, Big Tom
        Indifferent – Colby, Ethan, Jerri, Amber
        Dislike – Jenna, Tina

        PALAU
        Love – Tom, Stephanie, Bobby Jon
        Like – Ian, Katie, Gregg
        Interesting – Coby, Caryn, Redneck James, Angie
        Indifferent – Jenn, Ibrehem
        Dislike – Jeff, Kim, Janu, Ashlee, Willard, Jolanda

        FIJI
        Love – Yau-Man, Earl, Michelle
        Like – Anthony, Boo, Rita, Erica
        Interesting – Mookie, Lisi, Dreamz
        Indifferent – Cassandra, Liliana, Edgardo, Stacy, Jessica
        Dislike – Alex, Rocky, Sylvia, Pappa Smurf

        MICRONESIA
        Love – Natalie, Eliza, Cirie (partly from previous season), Ami (partly from previous season), Penner (mostly from other seasons), Yau-Man (from previous season), Johnny Fairplay (from previous season)
        Like – Erik, Alexis
        Interesting – Parvati, Tracy, Joel
        Indifferent – Mikey B, Siska, Mary
        Dislike – Ozzy, Amanda, James, Chet, Crazy Kathy

        Micronesia is a weird season. Almost all of the characters I love weren’t even good in this season! I am surprised this season is so popular, but people love Parv. They also love Cirie, which I get. They also love Amanda, which I don’t get at all. I think the main reason it is so well-regarded is all of the blind-sides, but I don’t care for it all that much. It’s at the bottom of the “good” seasons for me.

    • David, I’m the happiest boy! You are going to be so well primed for the new season. Okay, let’s get down to this!

      I’m glad to see you started with All-Stars and Palau. I wouldn’t have recommended Micronesia and Fiji myself so soon, but I’m glad you at least liked Fiji. Micronesia is considered a fan favorite, but it’s quite low on my personal rankings. Fiji is middle-grade Survivor for me, but there are some enjoyable elements.

      You wrote: “I had a lot of trouble towards the end of Micronesia.” This, I can totally understand. Parvati has played 3 times and is now a Survivor correspondent and I’ve hated her all the way through. Only at the very end of Heroes and Villains did I like her. The one thing I thought was really funny that she did in Micronesia was the “stirring the pot” … hahaha. I had to laugh every time they did that.

      So, what do people like about these mean characters? I think it’s the Lord of the Flies thing, mostly. For me it’s also the high level of game play. I like to see excellence in the game. There are players I like as people and people I like as gamers. Heroes vs Villains. That’s the show. And the more of the the show that you watch, you realize that the villains are the ones who actually know how to play. I think everyone starts out as a casual fan who likes the heroes, but as you start to understand it more, you realize that the heroes aren’t actually playing the same game. As a player named Dawn Meehan said once, “it’s like a football player who isn’t willing to tackle” … that’s how this game works!

      Now, there are those who are just plain jerks (like Rocky from Fiji) and they suck, but jerks who play the game? The best. Because part of winning this game is being brave enough to own your actions and I far-prefer someone who is cocky (like Boston Rob) but stands by their game as opposed to someone who seems nice (like Tina) but is really super manipulative and doesn’t cop to it. Or all of these people who try to claim they played an “honorable game” … never works. You voted these people out!

      It’s also just about these basic primal human attitudes that come out when we are stripped of our societal niceties. People like Tom and Boston Rob and Parvati are smart enough to figure out that it is a game for $1 million while people like Ian and Lex and Erik think they are there to forge lifelong friendships. It’s cruel, but it’s fascinating and I like to see people who came to play hard. You’ve got to listen to me and Cody describing coming across the game for the first time on the next ep from about 37:30 to 43:40 if you listen to nothing else so you can hear me talk about my first experience watching Boston Rob.

      You wrote: “a bunch of shallow, young, overly-aware-of-their-own-good-looks types I find hard to stomach but mix it up a bit with folks possessing actual personalities and integrity and I find it way more interesting.”

      I think most seasons have that going for them. I think you’ll enjoy Pearl Islands if you like that because it is a very “normal” cast. I’d also recommend Cook Islands. The first three eps or so are really bad, but that season gets excellent. Same goes for Philippines.

      You said: “I also love the focus on really basic survival stuff like building shelters and trying to start fires and such which seemed a little glossed over in the later couple of season I’ve seen.”

      That also varies season to season but is way more in the fore-front of earlier seasons. Let me try to get my barbs in you with the new school gameplay, because I’m afraid the lackluster gameplay and boring challenges might lose you in the early seasons, but if you are dead set on it, try Australian Outback and Africa. Still, I’d watch a couple of these newer recommendations first. I am really solid on my Top15 in that order and I’d say you could avoid most of those under 18 on my list, but Africa and Australia could be the exceptions.

  13. Just checked out your podcast today josh! Anyhow I listened to the wet hot American Summer bonus but there’s no comment section for it. I love that movie! It took me about 3 times over 4 years to get into it and now I crave it every summer. I probably watch it 3 times a summer now. My brother in law and his girlfriend came to visit this summer and we watched the whole TV show on Netflix and then the movie. You guys are correct about the order. The jokes in the movie didn’t work as well after having watched the series. They did have a big respect for how it ties together knowing that the movie came out first. Also, I Just watched the burning this summer and it has shot to the top of my summer camp movie list! I love Friday the 13 and the Addams family values camp scenes as well. Also on my list would be sleep away camp 1,2 and 3.

  14. So I decided to marry my new found addiction to survivor with my burgeoning craft beer addiction. Today Jeremy Corbyn won the labour party leadership election which made me very happy and I decided that this evening I’d treat myself with Survivor and beer. To make it more fun (and arguably less pathetically depressing) I decided to invent a “Survivor drinking game”. I don’t know how far you other beer aficionados (Juan and Dino) have got with your Survivor challenge but if you find yourself struggling at any point (which seems unlikely according to my own experience) this might help you along.

    So drink:
    – every time people discuss voting someone off
    – every time the word “survivor” is used
    – every time there’s an insert shot of a wild animal
    – every time Jeff Probst says “teams”
    – every time it starts to rain
    – every time you want to punch a contestant so much that you’re driven to drink anyway
    – every time anybody say “immunity”

    Drink two sips:
    – every time a team wins a reward challenge involving food or drink
    – every time someone totally oblivious to their imminent ousting is voted off

    I’m about to watch an episode and I’ll try to post here again when it’s over and I’m blind.

    • A few of my favorite Jeff Probstisms you might want to consider adding to your game.

      “Come on in, guys! (usually at the top of a challenge)

      “This is what you covet.” (always about the immunity idol, but often when it changes from tribe immunity to individual immunity)

      “…all the fixins!” (often part of his food reward descriptions)

      “Worth playing for?” (after he’s described the reward)

      “Dig deep!” (usually berating someone during a challenge)

      “…a date with me tonight at tribal council.” (if you lose an immunity challenge)

      I don’t know how drinking games work, so those might not be any good, but I know which ones are good enough to get me drinking …

      Jeff Probst’s unintentional inappropriate comments. These can usually be heard any time there is a challenge involving balls, a pole or a hole and Jeff “accidentally” says some pretty thinly veiled raunchy things. Whenever things are wet and tight and if there’s anything where you really have to get in there, it’s almost ridiculous how “unintentionally” risqué things can get. Probst is a little naughty.

      • These are excellent additions to the drinking game, Josh! Probst must use each of these phrases at least twelve thousand times per episode.

        • David, did you catch the “Jeff Probst Unintentional Inappropriate Comments” in Episode 1 of Cambodia?

          You would have been hammered by the end of the immunity challenge.

          There’s the typical:

          “Joe now going to give it a shot. Does he have enough pole and is it strong enough to get there?”

          But, then he goes on …

          “It looks long enough, but is it strong enough?!”

          And he actually says …

          “Can he get there? He’s all around it. Is his pole strong enough to GET. IT. OFF?!”

          For shame, Jeffrey.

  15. Since we’re all friends here, thought I’d mention that my wife gave birth to our second child yesterday. As such, I don’t expect to be around much the next little while. It’s killing me that part 3 of the Scream franchise review and TSFP’s MAD MAX episode just dropped, but priorities…

    Know that I’ll be missing you all, though.

    • Congratulations man! It sounds silly but I am genuinely full of gladness when folks who I have faith in as decent human beings have kids. I’m having a good day already today and this is just the icing on the cake! Cheers to your growing family young Dino! We’ll miss you greatly but will be waiting to hear from you whenever you have a rare speck of free time.

    • I already told you this on Twitter, but I’m very happy for you, Dino. Give my best to the wife and kids! I hope you are able to get some sleep and we look forward to seeing you again soon, buddy.

  16. When it comes to Survivor Josh is my only touchstone and I never would have watched it if he hadn’t held my hand and led me to it (we sometimes hold hands). Almost every episode of the two seasons I’ve watched (and really enjoyed) was sitting next to Josh on a couch in a hotel room in some random city when we both knew we should have been sleeping…”One more episode? We can’t just leave it hanging like that!”…and it was a real treat to watch it with someone who has such an encyclopedic knowledge of the show. He got me hooked on both of those seasons right off the bat and I found myself defending survivor to a couple of people just yesterday. I’m a fan. Josh will have to remind me what the seasons we watched, but the first was the Heroes vs. Villains season and that was just nonstop drama, I loved it. I’ve never watched a season as it aired before, but I’m in. Season 31!

  17. -Slight spoilers for Survivor Samoa-

    The season is starting to really pick up for me. I can’t remember what episode I’m on now, but there’s now two members of the jury. The last two tribal counsels have been the favorites I’ve seen from Survivor. I realize Russell is a total MEEP, but I’m loving the guy. For a guy who isn’t good at competitions, he’s absolutely killing it. The shock by everyone when he pulled out his second (!!!) hidden immunity idol that he found without a single clue made me absolutely love the series.

    Unless these final five or so episodes go downhill in a big way, I’ll end up ranking this as being better than Survivor Philippines.

    • I’ll be very interested to see where you rank it, Sal.

      I love everything you’re saying about it, but it’s just hard for me to appreciate it more than a season like Philippines–which had so many great elements–when Samoa basically just had Russell.

      If you like Russell in Season 19–and Cody will disagree with me about this–but I think it gets even more fun and crazy and just escalates to a fever pitch in Heroes vs Villains. ( Season 20 ). Highly recommended.

      • Even though it is a bit of an one man show with Survivor Samoa, Russell s creating these amazing moments that are beating out everything from Survivor Philippines for me. We’ve now reached the point where there’s been three INCREDIBLE tribal councils in a row, with each one being better than the last. So for what at least I dig about Survivor, an one man show is perfectly fine as long as it’s an epic villain like Russell.

        It does make me wonder what the show could have done to make me care about it had Russell not been a part of it.
        —-

        I have a really random question and it’s fairly meaningless, but it’s something I’ve been wondering since I watched Survivor 25. As far as the separate camps prior to the merge, has there ever been a season where one camp was in a much better situation than another? I’m not talking about having good builders or one tribe bringing home all of the rewards, but rather just ideal location. For example, has there ever been a camp too close to the water, leading to severe flooding problems with the other camp was fine?

        • Yeah, that has definitely been an issue a couple of times. Sometimes one camp will have a cave for complete shelter from the rain while the other doesn’t or often times one camp will have a bunch of fruit or coconuts while another one is barren. The most extreme example of this is in Survivor: Fiji, when The game twist was “Haves vs Have-Nots” and one camp had fresh food, camp supplies, cooking utensils, a bed, a hammock, a couch, a stellar shelter (I think they even had an espresso machine!) … and the other camp had to start from scratch with just a machete and a pot.

          And Samoa is good, don’t get me wrong. Maybe it’s just that I think Heroes vs Viillains is so much better and a season like Philippines is just more well-rounded.

          As for how they would have kept your attention if Russell hadn’t been on it, that’s actually a major problem that I have with the show in general. There’s always more stories going on than we get to see I hate it when they mislead us as to how the game played out because they want to show off one character in such a dramatic way. They don’t make stuff up, but they do leave a lot of stuff out to come in at their 40 minute episodes. Now, Russell was game-changing when it came to idols and sabotage and I can’t argue that, but he wasn’t the only one playing hard season and we should’ve seen more of everyone’s game who was playing well. I hate missing out on strategy. When you’re done with Samoa season I’ll give you an interesting interview with Laura Morette where she argues that Russell really didn’t do anything.

Comments are closed.