Wednesday, May 13th, 2020

We spent some time tonight watching the finale of the 40th season (2 per year for 20 years) of Survivor on CBS. This show is traditionally shot with a long lead time and then, months later, the winner of the show is revealed in a live extravaganza from Los Angeles with crowds and hoopla and, well.

ProbstgarageSo they had plenty of time in spring of last year to shoot and then edit the episodes, but this time the crowning of the winner happened from Jeff Probst’s garage with the three finalists in little pixelated boxes, as is the post-Covid fashion. He said the somewhat simpler backdrop was shipped in pieces to his garage with do-it-yourself assembly instructions. No word as to whether they were Ikea-style instructions.

Sam and I wondered how they would deal with shooting their 41st season, already delayed in production. Their very large crew from the US, Australia, and elsewhere could not obliviously descend on the tiny islands of Fiji and, well, think of the challenges in pandemic-land. But consider as well that this is a big budget prime time reality show on a (still) major American television network. Their solutions (if they come up with them) will be interesting indeed to see play out in a changed world.