Bil Browning

Racist Survivor?

Filed By Bil Browning | August 23, 2006 11:32 AM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment
Tags: CBS, entertainment news, Jeff Probst, racism, reality tv, Survivor, television

The net is abuzz today with news on The Great American Reality Show - Survivor. The show, which is known for dividing contestants into groups, has apparently decided to separate players by race this year. Black, white, latino and asian contestants will all have a shot at $1 million dollars but apparently arabic, indian and native american fans will have to choose sides. CBS officials are, of course, refusing comment.

What does everyone think? Racist? Bad judgement? A way to break down stereotypes?

UPDATE: Survivor announced today that the rumor is true. The original 20 contestants will be divided according to race - white, black, asian and hispanic. Hmmmm. The token gay is a fashion director. Maybe there is something to the whole "stereotype" factor... *grins*

Fueled by critics who slammed its lack of diversity, CBS's Survivor has unveiled a new twist for its upcoming season: Contestants will be divided by ethnicity. When it premieres Sept. 14, Survivor: Cook Islands will feature 20 castaways divided into four tribes: black, white, Asian and Latino.

'We're going to take some heat for it,' says creator and executive producer Mark Burnett of the twist, which was announced Wednesday morning. 'But it's a great cast.'

For a show entering its 13th season with steady ratings but ebbing buzz, the decision could be a shot in the arm if it once again generates Survivor water-cooler chatter. 'Some people will think this is controversial. Others will think, "What's the big deal?"' host Jeff Probst tells PEOPLE. 'Either way, it's going to be very interesting.'

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Stupid but It's Entertainment | August 23, 2006 12:56 PM

Nice post, Bil.

It's not very smart in today's world to divide and conquer this way. But is is CBS, after all...Cronkite must be ashamed of his network today.

But, I pay little attention to this stuff. It's Entertainment.

Now, if they start pre-empting NFL for it, they'll have me hoppin' mad. NFL is a necessity.

Just so we have our priorities correct.

NFL vs Survivor? No contest. Survivor all the way. On one hand you've got big, heavy, testosterone/steroid junkies covered from head to foot in protective gear. On the other we've got eye candy strutting around half (or fully) naked... Both strain for the work out - but one is much more enjoyable to watch (and it doesn't take 6 hours to play a one hour game!).

Bruce Parker | August 24, 2006 2:51 AM

For the love of god! Could this be more fucked up! I honestly feel like I don't even want to get into it. This came up in one of my courses from today. sad sad sad.

I'm with Bruce. There is no good reason to divide the cast along racial lines for "entertainment". Then again, I can see no good reason for Survivor, although Bil does point out one reason people might watch.

Of course it's racist, they don't even include all races. It's as if they are saying that Aboriginals need not apply since there race wasn't included.

Rick Hunter | August 25, 2006 10:38 PM

what a shame. The world struggles to bring everyone together and the CBS/Burnett clan are ready to make billions immortalizing racial stereotypes. God Bless America!! See ya in hell...

Marla R. Stevens | September 19, 2006 10:28 PM

NFL, Survivor, walk under the stars
NFL, Survivor, just about anything on PBS
NFL, Survivor, just about anything on the Discovery channel, the History channel, Food Network, HGTV, National Geographic channel, etc.
NFL, Survivor, video I've been dying to see
NFL, Survivor, nap
NFL, Survivor, candlelit bath
NFL, Survivor, slow food experience
NFL, Survivor, hot tub by moonlight
NFL, Survivor, a good book
NFL, Survivor, polling my neighbors on their views on civil marriage equality
NFL, Survivor, making phone calls for pro-marriage equality candidates
NFL, Survivor, nearly anything else