Each week, host Jeff Probst answers a few questions about the most recent episode of ‘Survivor: Caramoan — Fans vs. Favorites’.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: I’ve always said there is little upside to winning the loved ones challenge. You either piss people off by not selecting to include them, or become too likable by giving up your own visit for others. And yet people keep trying to win the damn thing! Give any future Survivor contestants reading this a compelling reason to win this challenge.
JEFF PROBST: CONTROL. And often FOOD. Two big reasons that it’s hard to pass up. I agree with you that it can be tricky to navigate and if you don’t feel comfortable with your people skills or on the fly negotiating then maybe best to not worry so much about this one. No question in my mind I would play to win and I would use my power to negotiate. Nobody ever comes out and says – “How badly do you wanna hang with mom?” While you can’t enforce any promise in this game, it’s still huge leverage. Then I’d say to my mom “Love ya, mom, but I’m trading you in for a vote! I’ll see ya back home. Now scat!”
EW: We’ve seen 10 million sobworthy loved one reunions on this show before — including Lisa Whelchel’s emotional one last season. What about Brenda and her dad made your eye faucets finally start leaking?
PROBST: Well, probably because I am now a dad to a daughter. That connection is pretty powerful. It was also her specific exchange. Her dad had clearly given her advice before the game: “Be humble.” And she took it and she did it. She was humble. She was so proud of herself and it was such beautiful advice. It wasn’t “Play to win… or do what it takes…” It was so simple — be humble. Still makes me well up even as I sit here typing on this cold Macbook Pro.
EW: Other than maybe Christy Smith in the Amazon, I can’t remember anyone being this distraught immediately after being voted out. Did you talk to Brenda right after and what other insight can you give us into how she was doing after being blindsided?
PROBST: Well it’s something we are going to deal with at the live show for sure. Yes, I spoke with her immediately after the vote and she was pretty upset by the betrayal, especially from Dawn. I think that Brenda played a pretty worthy game both as strategist and as human. She gave a lot of herself to other people. So, to have her entire alliance — but mainly Dawn — sucker punch her was tough to take.
EW: Okay, we’ve got a supersized three-hour finale/reunion show coming up next on Sunday night, so give us a supersized tease on what to expect. The nation is on pins and needles waiting to find out if there will be a Fallen Comrades tribute, and if so, whether it will be by land or by sea!
PROBST: Yes, there will be Fallen Comrades but I am determined to find a way to get rid of it in coming years! It’s a good finale. The game is definitely not over. We have another big turn moment. The only person who I don’t think can win in any given scenario is Sherri. Sorry Sherri, it’s not personal. I just don’t see it happening at this point. Everybody else has a shot depending on which people end up in the final!
To watch an exclusive deleted scene from last night’s episode, simply click on the video player below. To read Dalton’s recap, click right here. And for more ‘Survivor’ scoop, follow Dalton on Twitter @DaltonRoss.