The first episode of Survivor: Fiji aired last night, and the online world has responded. All in all, most reviewers seemed to feel positively about the potential entertainment value of this season, but as these are critics, there are, of course, some critiques:
Roger Catlin at Courant.com says, much as we have felt here at BuddyTV, “The problem with getting to know a more than a dozen and a half new contestants in a season premiere of Survivor is that viewers don’t know who to cheer for, can’t quite keep all of the castaways straight as a matter of fact.”
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Over at Jam Television, the twists this season have them saying: "Nobody said Survivor was fair but come on, this is ridiculous…With a mean streak a mile wide, the producers decided to cruelly toy with the players right off the bat by lulling them into a false sense of security."
Daniel Fienberg over at Zap2It thinks that the luxurious camp might be a bit too much.
“Their provisions are almost excessive, like this season could be retitled Survivor: Ikea.” (That would be a good commercial! Leave people in there for weeks to survive on frozen Swedish meatballs and ligonberry preserves and every day they have to put together a piece of Ikea furniture in under 20 minutes or they will be sent to As Is Island, land of dirty couches and broken tables.)
With regard to the change in the immunity idol placement (back at camp) and usage rules (now must be played BEFORE votes are read), Dalton Ross at Entertainment Weekly says:
“I am looking forward to seeing things switched up. Having the idols hidden back at camp adds the twist of one person knowing things that others don't and watching how they decide to use and share that information….It will also be interesting to see the effects of the new rule that the idol has to be played after the votes are cast but before they are revealed. This provides the opportunity for a lot of bluffing to take place, and bluffing is always fun.”
Dalton also echoes a common theme out there among those who love the ladies, saying, "I was upset to see [Jessica deBen] go…I definitely had Jessica pegged as my Survivor Hot Chick of the season."
And the forums at the Unofficial Survivor Guide are saying...
If we could punch one contestant this season... it would be Dre [Herd]. If anything, just for calling himself ‘Dreamz’. ‘Dreams’ would have been bad enough, but the ‘Z’ at the end is just obnoxious. Why can't ‘Dre’ be enough of a nickname? We get the feeling that at least a couple of the castaways would punch him as well…There's something not right about a guy calling himself ‘Dreamz’ refusing to let people sleep.”
Overall, the reaction from the online world would seem to indicate that difficulties in coming up with original idea notwithstanding, the Survivor producers have managed to intrigue their viewers and we will be back for more.
- Leslie Seaton, BuddyTV Staff Columnist