About six or so months ago, I found information on CBS.com about a series they were going to do involving "normal" people. Since I had made a couple cuts for The Real World: Hawaii, I thought I would give it a shot. Then, I started talking with my Viet Nam Vet Stepfather, and he told me a lot of things that he had to do when he was shot down in the Viet Cong in order to stay alive. I reconsidered, thinking that I would apply for the second season after watching what happened on the first.
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Boy, am I glad I did.
I could imagine the meeting that the CBS execs had about this endeavor:
CBS Exec: Okay, we're in a bit of trouble here. NBC is absolutely kicking our collective ass when it comes to the ratings, and no show we have can even come close to competing with Regis and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire. We're in a lot of trouble here, guys! What are we supposed to do?
Lou, the intern: Hey, what about putting Gilligan's Island into syndicate? Everyone loves Gilligan's Island, and they just did that expose about it on FOX.
CBS Exec: You watched something other than CBS? That's it! You're fired!
Lou the intern gathers his things and leaves.
Peg, the other intern: Excuse me, sir? I have an idea. Maybe we can capitalize on something just like Gilligan's Island and make it real. What if we took sixteen people and just stranded them on a deserted island and had camera crews follow them around all day?
CBS Exec: There were only seven castaways on Gilligan's Island.
Peg, the other intern: That's where the fun part comes in! We'll split them up into tribes and make them have competitions with each other, such as who would eat beetle larva and who can carry someone through the woods on a stretcher they make the fastest. The team that loses has to vote a person on their team off, until there are only two people left! Then, we get everyone to come back and vote who the last survivor is.
CBS Exec: And we'll give the survivor one million dollars!
CBS Exec puts his pinky to his mouth. He and Peg cackle maniacally.
Survivor is a good show. There are people you want to leave and others you want to stay. You get to see what's going on, when the inhabitants of the island have no clue. Sort of like The Real World meets Gilligans Island meets Lord of the Flies. Watch it once-- I'm sure you'll be hooked.
I can't wait to try out for next season.
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