From the very beginning Survivor has dealt with the always nagging question in the back of all viewers' minds in almost any reality show you can name and that is: Is what we are seeing really REALITY???? Or is something else at work here.....namely the producers of said show. When the original 16 castaways landed in Bornea and ushered in this new era of TV genre, the questions began soon thereafter. Speficially speaking, the forgettable Stacy Stillman first brought to light some possible "interference" by someone other than the contestants when she alleged that the show's producers influenced her tribe to vote her out and not the elderly Rudy Boesch. This was one the heels of the first two boots of the series being fellow elderly's Sonia and BB. So with the threat of ageism being lobbed at the new phenomenon, the argument went that Sean, Sue, Kelly etc. were steered to vote for Stillman and keep Rudy in the game. Nothing ever came out of the lawsuit and no criminality was found. The seed was planted in viewers' minds however and has remained in a dormant state through the various seasons until last week when fresh water was poured down onto the bud.
Of course I am referring to the events of this past Wednesday when Russell Hantz supposedly pulled off one of the biggest blindsides in history by taking out Tyson Apostle and sparing partner Parvati Shallow in the process. On the surface here nothing seems out of the ordinary. Blindsides are part of the game and have resulted in some of the most memorable moments in Survivor history. However the intricacies involved here were too much for many viewers to ignore.
For starters, why on earth would Tyson change his vote from Russell to Parvati when Boston Rob came up with a foolproof plan to boot one of the two out of the Evil Alliance????? 3 votes for Russell and 3 votes for Parvati would ensure that one of them would go home as the revote (along with the 3 votes for Tyson) would not allow Russ or Parv to vote (again along with Tyson) and than have no defense to the majority of Jerri, Coach, Sandra, Rob, and Courtney. The fact that Tyson at the last minute changed his vote and ruined the plan was just insane. I dont care if you have an IQ of zero.....no one could be that dumb, especially in a game for a million bucks.
The other aspect here was Russell knowing who Tyson was voting for in the first place. For all he knew, Tyson could have been assigned to vote for Parvati in the first place and thus not be able to change the tally and hence the result. Nowhere did Tyson say to Russell who he was voting for.....which leads to arguing about how Russell knew to give the idol to Parvati and not keep it to protect himself. For a guy who will do anything next to killing someone in order to stay in the game, why would Russell put himself in peril for a skank like Parvati? Again no one would put their neck on the line in this game without knowing for absolute certain that the plan would work. It just doesn't add up.
Now I will be the first to admit that I despise Russell. I have no respect for his antics and would love nothing more than to see his smug ass voted out for a change. So if you want to say sour grapes than go ahead. However the fact of the matter is that this isn't the first time producers have been called into question and surely it won't be the last. There is no way that the producers would like to see a Courtney/Candice/Danielle final three as ratings would surely take a hit. After all the show is a business and a business is out to make money. Money won't come in from advertisers without people tuning in. People won't tune in unless there are polarizing characters like Russell running around creating havoc. Russell undoubtedly has been one of the most talked about players in history. His scenes are always must see tv. There is no denying this. The threat of his early departure would have hurt the show no doubt.
The pieces are all in place and the case has been made. In my view I honestly think producers do in fact influence the show. Maybe they had nothing to do with the lottery ticket won by Russell last night but I think there is no doubt that in the past events have transpired that can be called into question for sure.
Paging Oliver Stone!!!!!!