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The band

  • Awesome Music:
  • Face of the Band: Either Dave Bickler or Jimi Jamison, although a few fans think it is the only constant band member, Frankie Sullivan.
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  • Misattributed Song: Since the songs tend to be better known than the band (and because Dave Bickler sounded really similar to Steve Perry), they frequently fall victim to this trope.
  • Nobody Loves the Bassist: On multiple counts. You can search for images of any band member, and still struggle to find pictures of the bassist- even the longest running bassist in the band. And they have had more changes in that position than any other.
  • One Mario Limit: A guitarist named Jimmy is a dime a dozen, but spelled like that... Not helped by the more famous one being called “Jimmie James” as a session musician.
  • Signature Song: "Eye Of The Tiger" and "Burning Heart".

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The Novel

The T.V. show:

WARNING: Spoilers ahead are unmarked. You have been warned.

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  • Accidental Innuendo:
    • Jeff Probst's commentary on challenges involving balls or poles has reached an almost memetic status in the Survivor fandom, as well as forms of "[X] getting in on the action!" Rob Cesternino has even started running a "Jeff Probst Inappropriate Comment of the Week" segment on his Survivor podcasts.
    • Plenty of examples from the contestants as well. For example Vanuatu's confessional from Chris Daugherty about how opening up to women and showing them vulnerability convinces them to "open up that back door."
    • Brendan from Tocantins describing finding the hidden immunity idol hidden in a statue: "I just started feeling around, and looking at the skirt, and kinda lifted up the skirt on the backside of it, and saw a little hole, and there's the idol."
    • Many people joked that the Millennials vs Gen X immunity necklace looked like a penis.
  • Acceptable Targets:
    • Anyone who quits without a good reason. Players like Jenna Morasca, who left All-Stars to be with her dying mother, Kathy Sleckman, Bi Nguyen, or Dana Lambert, who was medically evacuated from the game in intolerable pain, may get a pass. If not, they are very likely to be given a Hate Sink or otherwise poor edit.
      • Of the quitters, Colton Cumbie in gets the most hate for being racist and elitist in One World, especially towards Bill and Christina. No one felt sorry for him when he was evacuated. The announcement of his return for Blood vs. Water annoyed everyone and he quit after a week in the game because no one wanted to play the game his way. The minute he quit, Jeff Probst ripped him a new one.
      • Purple Kelley in Nicaragua received an infamously invisible edit after quitting, and received a grand total of two confessionals (that both make her look like an idiot). All for quitting for reasons that actually seem pretty justified in hindsight.
    • Jeff Probst and several players over the years have a tendency to judge and/or mock players for gameplay mistakes. The most prominent example is Erik Reichenbach, who's necklace error has been brought up a decade after Mirconeasia.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Applied to everyone. It's been stated time and time again that what the camera shows is not indicative of what each castaway is really like, so opinions on each character are going to vary wildly.
    • Borneo's Sean Kenniff in particular. Was he really as clueless as he was presented, or was his "alphabet strategy" a way to vote with the Tagi alliance without being seen as a flat-out villain? There's plenty of evidence to support both theories.
    • Panama: Was Terry the underdog winning immunities for his life in the game with the Casayas being the bad guys, or are the Casayas the good guys with Terry standing in their way?
    • Mario Lanza from Survivor Historians raises an interesting interpretation about Jerri Manthey and Colby Donaldson in the Australian Outback. Is Colby The Hero of the season, and Jerri the Big Bad... or is Colby actually the villain who betrayed his original alliance and is actually a Villain with Good Publicity thanks to editing given him the heroic treatment? Colby did back-stab her and their alliance. And it can be argued that due to her aggressive and strategic attitude (not unlike Richard Hatch, who America hated at the time due to his "unethical game") and early merge boot, editing decided to portray her as bad guy while portraying Colby as the hero who redeemed himself.
    • The show itself. Is it a semi-voyeuristic slice of life about people stranded in the wild, a social experiment that tests peoples morality, an adventure show that just happened to evolve into a game, a cutthroat strategy game that just happens to take place outdoors, or some combination of the above?
  • And You Thought It Would Fail:
    • Many people were very skeptical of Survivor: Blood vs. Water with the return of Redemption Island and many people thought the Blood vs. Water format would be a Scrappy Mechanic. However, as it turned out, many people enjoyed it to the point that it was reused in San Juan Del Sur. It was used in the season that got Survivor out of it's Dork Age.
    • Same goes for Kaoh Rong. With Jeff Probst not talking about the season, many people assumed it wouldn’t be well-liked. However, many people found that it very entertaining due to the unpredictability and characters with the only problem being the divisive Sole Survivor of that season.
    • Pre-season, some people were nervous about Millennials vs. Gen X after having a similar twist to the twist from Nicaragua. However, with the likable cast that season had, an edit that avoided an obvious winner's edit that past seasons had, having nearly every vote be a blindside, and possibly has some of the most Shocking Eliminations of all-time, many people came out of that season enjoying it.
    • David vs. Goliath was largely hit this trope. Some people weren't hyped for the season due to how Jeff Probst not hyping it up as well as concerns that production will favor the David tribe. Come to when the season airs, many fans started to enjoy the season thanks to the very balanced edit, the characters, and the amount of power shifts.
    • The twist in Island of the Idols has been fairly well received after some initial concerns that Sandra and Rob would enter the game with the twist merely securing safety for a few weeks, that they would become a Spotlight-Stealing Squad, or that they'd otherwise interfere with the season too much. These concerns have been assuaged, and the twist is far from the most controversial aspect of the season.
  • Anvilicious:
    • The editing style of choice for the show, especially during certain seasons. When the show wants you to feel something about a player or a situation, they hammer their point down HARD. Sometimes it's subverted, such as the subtly sweet relationship between Rodger and Elisabeth during Australian Outback or the friendship between Tom and Ian during Palau, but examples like those are more the exception that proves the rule.
    • Millennials vs. Gen X has aspects of it trying to talk about the difference between Millennials and Gen X people. Needless to say, some people have gotten tired of this and the Anvilicious nature of this can come across a bit Narm-ish as seen below.
      • This would get hammered down more and more as seasons became themes instead of new locations as a majority of confessionals would talk directly about the theme of of the season, especially David vs Goliath.
  • Archive Panic: Averted. With almost 600 episodes across 40 seasons and counting... you luckily don't really need to watch seasons in order to enjoy them.
  • Ass Pull: Some people are bound to think the final twist in Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers which managed to save Ben when he was otherwise toast and help him win the game by enforcing a fire-making challenge instead of a vote was unfair or even rigged for Ben to win, even though Jeff claimed it was just a twist that one would expect in the game. The fact he kept conveniently finding idols back-to-back that saved him from elimination doesn't help his case- though he did find them fair and square.
  • Awesome Ego:
    • Honorable mentions like Richard Hatch, Tyson Apostol, Coach, Russell Hantz, Malcolm Freberg, Spencer Bledsoe, and Debbie Wanner.
    • Subverted with Natalie Cole. While a much-quoted moment from her season preview played at the Ghost Island finale was her saying, "Everything about me speaks power", causing some fans to label her this trope pre-season, she ended up having No Social Skills within the game, and became a very loose cannon.
  • Awesome Music:
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • After the Panama/Cook Islands idol received criticism for having the idol holder basically be immune for a majority of the game, they changed the rules for the hidden immunity in Survivor: Fiji so that you can only play it after the votes are casted but before they are read thus the idol holder may still be able to go home. Subverted in Cagayan with the Tyler Perry Idol though.
    • Redemption Island was a much-hated Scrappy Mechanic that many fans disliked. In Blood vs. Water, they changed the dynamics of the twist that ended up causing more drama in which while many people still hate Redemption Island, a lot of people outright stated that it actually worked well in Blood vs. Water.
    • With the winners of the many seasons having to have major Captain Obvious Reveals and people who are examining the edit went on to believe Michele would of won Kaoh Rong, Millennials vs. Gen X seems to give everybody a more equalized edit that causes a bunch of people to receive "a winner's edit" of sorts. A good example is while the winner is usually the one to talk about their family, three people actually went out of their way in Millennials vs. Gen X to talk about their family six episodes in. Another good example is how despite Michaela having a bunch of confessionals causing many people to believe she would of won, she actually got voted right before the merge.
    • With the very infamous Broken Base involving Michele's win in Kaoh Rong causing people to accuse of a bitter jury, Jeff Probst stated that he ended up changing the Final Tribal Council in Game Changers to make the jury less bitter about the events that went on in the game.
      • Additionally, Adam and Jeremy were accused of having gotten their clean sweep victories in part due to sympathy votes. The new format has emphasized gameplay making that the main factor of someone's victory.
    • The Legacy Advantage was believed to be a wasted twist given how in the previous two seasons it was used, nobody aside from the holder did not know that it exists at the start of the game. When it returns to Ghost Island, the person who found the legacy advantage must give it to somebody else making at least one person aside from the holder knew of it's existence.
    • After being called out for mishandling sexual harassment in Island of the Idols, Jeff made it a point at the reunion show to publicly apologize on behalf of production, explain that they were making rules changes to crack down on such things in the future, and allow Kellee to open up about the incident (when she originally hadn't been allowed to as a jury member).
    • One of the many issues with Edge of Extinction was that the advantages found on the island to be given to players still in the game were basically handouts and had no benefit to the players on Edge of Extinction. In Winners At War, they can now sell them for fire tokens to the players which poses a risk to the player receiving the advantage and a benefit to the player who found the advantage on Edge of Extinction.
  • Badass Decay: Several players upon returning just weren't as impressive on their previous appearances.
    • Colby was The Ace in The Australian Outback, however in his subsequent appearances in All-Stars and Heroes vs Villains, he just couldn't get it together. James even called him "Superman in a fat suit."
      • To a lesser extent, Tom Westman. Outside of his idol play that eliminated Cirie, he didn't do anything too big of gameplay pertinence. He didn't seem to have the passion he did in Palau. Unlike most examples, most viewers still like him for standing up for Stephenie when James was bullying her.
    • Oh, and speaking of All-Stars... Everyone from that season not named Ethan, Jerri, Jenna, Shii-Ann, Rudy, Amber, or Rob Mariano has been accused of this.
      • Richard Hatch and Tina won the first two games of Survivor ever, and Rob Cesternino was The Chessmaster in The Amazon, however in All-Stars they found themselves surrounded by people who wanted nothing more than to vanquish the people with the best legacies, resulting in none of them standing much of a chance. For what it's worth, Rob C has claimed that Rob M "outwitting" him was actually Manipulative Editing; and Richard knew he stood no chance so he spent the entire season trolling people and goofing around. It has also been said that Tina attempted to filibuster Tribal Council to save herself.
      • Sue Hawk in Borneo used Obfuscating Stupidity to make everyone think she was an ignorant redneck. In All-Stars, she's flanderized into actually being a redneck and spends much of her time bickering with Tom
      • Tom as well, as he's completely unable to realize that Romber's final four alliance doesn't include him... despite this being shown during a Coconut Chop expy challenge.
      • Rupert, Colby, and Lex were huge immunity threats on their own seasons. On All-Stars? ...Not so much.
      • Let's not forget Alicia's strategy of... not being in any alliances. Yeah...
      • Kathy was the fan-favorite and came one Challenge away from winning Marquesas. Here's she's one of the pagonging victims, and comes off less sympathetically.
      Kathy: Your negativity is like a cancer on this tribe. [said to Jenna, whose Mom is dying of cancer]
    • Jonny Fairplay, big time. In Pearl Islands, he was the most infamous Survivor villain of all time, known for his infamous lie and strategy. When he returned in Micronesia, he asked to be voted out first to be with his pregnant girlfriend. This was all a cover for the fact that his jaw was broken by Danny Bonaduce and he lacked pain meds. Because of this, Jeff has lumped him in with the other quitters and won't let him return, even for Heroes vs Villains.
    • Rupert Boneham, in his first three seasons he was the memorable pirate who was known for his memorable antics like stealing shoes from the other tribe, catching fish, and his eccentric personality. However, in Blood Vs Water, he gave up his spot in the game for his wife and ended up being the first one out. It's around that point that the viewers were starting to get tired of him.
    • Russell Hantz was an unstoppable force in his first season, but in Redemption Island, not only is he the first person voted out of his tribe, he goes out indignantly - crying and blubbering, calling his tribe bitches, and even threatening to sue them for throwing the challenge to vote him out. Like with Rupert, most of the viewers were starting to get tired of him.
      • Arguably in Heroes vs Villains as well, as his game is much weaker and he backstabs allies for no real reason, ensuring he gets zero votes at FTC. The only reason he made it that far this time is because everyone knew he was a goat.
    • Tasha Fox in Cagayan was known for her streak of 3 immunity wins. However, when she returns for Cambodia, she ends up becoming merely a follower to Jeremy and ends up in the finale with no votes, all the while being condescending to her tribemates.
    • J.T. Thomas in Tocantins was known for playing the first "perfect game", not getting a single vote against him and sweeping the jury vote. In Heroes vs. Villains, he became known giving the hidden immunity idol to Russell, which is considered to be one of the dumbest moves ever made in the history of the show. This has gotten worse by episode four of Game Changers. At the Mana/Nuku tribal council, J.T. ended up telling Brad that his tribe is voting for Sierra and told Brad to vote for Sandra. However, J.T. forgot to make it clear that Malcolm was his only ally on his tribe and after Tai successfully play his idol on Sierra, Malcolm went out of the game leaving J.T. with zero allies in the game. After being voted out with an idol in his pocket after knowing he was on the bottom, it's safe to say his reputation is irreparable.
    • Prior to Game Changers, both Tony Vlachos and Ciera Eastin were viewed as the "poster children" of making big moves. Come to Game Changers, both of them went on to be the first two people voted off that season. Double points for Tony as his crazy antics that he did in Cagayan made his tribe turned against him in Game Changers. Tony was able to subvert this trope in Winners At War however as he started the game nowhere near as crazy as he did in Game Changers; leading to him becoming a dominant player that season.
    • Joe Anglim was a challenge beast in Cambodia as he won four immunity challenges in a row (beating several returning players in the process), and he lasted so long in an immunity challenge that he passed out due to fatigue. In Edge of Extinction, he lost the first (and only) individual immunity challenge that season in addition to the challenge to return to the game to a bunch of new players.
    • Aubry Bracco was considered by many to play the best strategic game in Kaoh Rong. However, her later appearances had less impressive showings as she was on the wrong end of every pivotal vote in Game Changers, and she was voted out with both an idol and an advantage in her pocket in Edge of Extinction. This made many people to label her with this trope.
    • This was pretty much bound to happen to most of the cast in Winners At War as people were bound to be raised to a high standard and judged exceptionally critically given the cast despite most of them needing to go out fairly early as per the rules, a la All-Starsnote . With that said, there are some pretty standout examples:
      • Danni Boatwright in her first season was on the bottom of the merged tribe throughout most of the season. Despite that, she managed to find a way to make it all the way to the final two, and win Guatemala. Come to Winners At War however, when she thought she was on the bottom of her tribe, she ended up telling Ben about an alliance she was in within earshot of another member of that said alliance; making her appear untrustworthy to everybody, and was voted out third because of that.
      • Sandra Diaz-Twine was a two time winner who even though was a dead man walking in Game Changers, still managed to preserve her title. In Winners At War, she was playing a strong game, up until her final two episodes in which she gives up her idols to Denise as a sign of trust, and promptly gets voted out with it.
      • Wendell lost most of the social and challenge skills he had shown in "Ghost Island" when he developed a brazen cockiness resulting in him rubbing most of his tribe the wrong way and costing his tribe two challenges. Somewhat ironic considering the reason he won Ghost Island.
      • Kim was consistently on the bottom and on the wrong side of votes, and even managed to blow up her own game by quitting a challenge when she knew she was in danger.
      • Ben Dribergen was known for his resiliency and cockiness in Heroes vs Healers vs Hustlers, but this time around, he retains all the cockiness he had, but with none of the skills he had to back it up before. In addition, the people he was alienating were less of Acceptable Targets making him come off less sympathetically.
  • Base-Breaking Character Has its own page.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment:
    • Dancing with C.C. from Thailand. Brian at this moment in the game is flying high, having tricked his fellow castaways he is simply a hardworking middle-class worker that can be trusted. He proceeds to wins a reward challenge, but instead of winning something helpful, he receives a homemade video from home from his porn-star wife C.C., who proceeds to completely blow his cover by showing off his large house, fancy giant piano, and two new cars. All while shaking her booty, much to the enjoyment of the male tribe members. They must have been really Distracted by the Sexy, because despite one or two confessionals proclaiming suspicion, it's never touched upon again.
    • There was a scene in One World where a pig shows up from out of nowhere in the tribe's camp. Everyone starts to try and chase it while comical music plays, and... then cut to the immunity challenge. The pig isn't brought up after the challenge, and the only reason we know they didn't catch it is that there are a few shots of the same pig after the challenge. Fan theory is that the editors threw in that scene as Foreshadowing of Michael Skupin coming back for season 25.
    • Then there was this moment in Heroes Versus Villains. Courtney is wandering through the jungle and ... comes across Russell and Coach on a giant see-saw. Russell and Coach on a giant see-saw. If it was any other two contestants it wouldn't have been that big a deal, but - those two? True to the trope, it comes out of nowhere and is never explained.
    • The Caramoan finale featured an audience interview with Rudy Boesch for no apparent reason. That would be BLAM-worthy in and of itself, but the segment featured a taped greeting from Richard Hatch to Rudy... nude, of course.
    • During Jason's Ponderosa video, Scot cannot be found anywhere at first. Then, as Jason tries to find some breakfast food for dinner (brinner!), Scot jumps out of nowhere wearing nothing but a speedo and a professional wrestler's mask.
      Scot: DID SOMEBODY SAY BLUE LABEL?
      Jason (Giddily, like a little kid on Christmas morning): BLUE LABEL!!!
    • On Game Changers, many fans felt that the scene where Debbie and Cochran were hanging out on a boat together feasting and relaxing is a bit out of place for this show.
    • On Island of the Idols, Sandra's finger gets bitten by a chicken because she wouldn't share her papaya with it. This is never mentioned again.
  • Breakout Character: Has it's own page
  • Broken Base: Has its own page.
  • Captain Obvious Reveal: The editors tend to edit some winners to the point that they will obviously win. Honorable mentions for this trope goes to Brian Heidik, J.T., Boston Rob, Kim Spradlin, John Cochran, Tyson Apostel, Mike Holloway, Jeremy Collins, Sarah Lacine, and Tommy Sheehan.
  • Catharsis Factor: From Island of the Idols, many fans found it incredibly satisfying to see Aaron, Missy, and Elizabeth voted off in quick succession for their role in protecting Dan, eliminating Kellee and tormenting Janet. Dan himself gets disqualified shortly after Elaine's elimination due to yet another touching incident, this time with a producer. To say viewers were relieved he was finally gone is an understatement.
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome:
    • Most players seem to have settled on the following strategy: When you hit the beach, you start making alliances of about three to five other people. Then you start sticking your hand in holes, digging up areas under suspicious looking logs or rocks, or looking in suspicious trees to find the idol. Then you start voting out people who are weak or sick, sometimes voting out physically stronger players because they're not as loyal. Around merge, especially if it's the last tribe-tribal council, you target the people who carried your tribe in the tribal phase and then target the other team's stronger players to reduce them to just one person. Then the person in charge of the alliance starts picking off the loads or the people in second or third, while the people at the bottom (or loads) start plotting to get the people on top voted out. Plus, make yourself look like you are playing the game, as perception from other players is also important as you need to win the jury vote.
    • Extra emphasis on "complacent" in certain years (Samoa to One World at least), as the prevailing strategy in several seasons has been "don't upset the apple cart". You have entire casts content to let the status quo be, allowing alliance ringleaders to waltz to the finals unopposed; such as Russell in Samoa, Rob in Redemption Island, and Colton until his medical evacuation in One World. This last one was especially frustrating, because Colton was a petty racist bully and almost nobody was shown to even speak up in defense of his targets.
  • Creator's Favorite: As you might have noticed from other tropes listed here, production plays favorites when it comes to screen time, due to their ability to effectively carry the season. More often than not, they fail.
    • "Coach" Benjamin Wade in Tocantines. Before Tocantins began, Jeff Probst claimed that he would be the most popular contestant since Rupert. He then became the focus of the entire season, often getting more screentime than the entire rest of the cast combined. To say there was a backlash would be putting it mildly. Jeff Probst even lampshaded at the reunion how the most common comment he got regarding the season was animosity towards Coach. He got better in Heroes vs Villains.
    • Ozzy on South Pacific. He was given a disproportionate amount of time in the reunion show, even including a question from a child in the audience basically asking how he was so awesome, at the expense of the other players including that season's winner. For someone who was voted out three times, alternated between non-existent and disastrous strategy note , frustrated his alliance-mates with his fixation on Semhar and Elyse, and only got as far as he did because of the Redemption Island twist and his strength at the individual challenges. Some found him entertaining nonetheless.
    • There is also Rupert Boneham. While he used to be an Ensemble Dark Horse, he became a much more divisive figure among the fandom with him coming back four times causing people to grow tired of him believing that he was never going to win no matter how hard he tried, and how many times comes back into the game. Many people believed that CBS only brings him back, and gives him plenty of airtime just because of his "iconicness".
    • Joe Anglim has received this treatment. As his first season was airing, a lot of the Survivor fanbase felt neutral towards Joe at best. However, after he was put on the cast of Cambodia, it became very clear that production was trying to force him to become a fan favorite when it wasn't there. By the time that he was announced that he would return for a third season, many people have turned on him as this Reddit survey shows that out of the four returning players in Joe's third season, he was the castaway that the fanbase were the least excited to return.
    • While this trope is usually averted for female contestants, Sarah Lacina manages to be the first female player to be accused of one due to her overly positive edit that took airtime away from fan favorites such as Aubry, and Cirie.
    • Rick Devens from Edge of Extinction has also received this treatment. Before he was voted out, he was seen as a well rounded, but flawed character. However when he returned from Extinction, he proceeded to devour all the screentime by finding idols, causing very controversial exits from Wentworth, Victoria, and especially Lauren. People had expected him to be a Captain Obvious Reveal winner just like previous seasons, and while he wasn't, fans just didn't get the hype Jeff was giving.
  • Creator's Pet:
    • Russell Hantz from Samoa. Over the course of the season, he received the most inflated edit in the entire game, with a whopping 108 confessionals, most of which consisted of one of two things. Proclaiming that he wanted something to happen (followed by the thing happening), and proclaiming how great he was. The end result of this was that people ultimately disliked the fact that he lost because the winner got comparatively little screen time.
      • In Heroes vs Villains he received a more balanced edit, but was still unnecessarily credited with Tyson's elimination (something he had virtually nothing to do with).
      • In Redemption Island, despite being eliminated second, it was repeatedly stated that the Zapatera tribe was doomed because they threw a challenge to get rid of Russell Hantz... despite that fact that he was actively harming the team with sabotage attempts (which weren't shown in the actual episodes incidentally). He was also nominate for player of the week, the same week his elimination was aired!
      • It should be noted that production (or at least Jeff) has evidently had their opinions change over the years. Nowadays Jeff has proclaimed that Russell is his least favorite contestant (likely owing at least partially to the comments Russell made about the game being flawed in the HaV reunion). This is a sharp contrast to his opinions at the time of Russell's showings.
      Jeff: "Survivor: Samoa will rank as one of my favorite seasons and for one reason: Russell Hantz. He single handedly kept this show interesting week after week after week."
    • Phillip Sheppard from Redemption Island and Caramoan for a wide variety of reasons chiefly among which being that he's a generally unpleasant personality that juggles random gimmicks in an attempt to hog airtime, willingly become Rob's goat despite giving confessionals detailing otherwise, and accusing Steve of being a racist for utterly selfish and irrelevant reasons. A more detailed explanation is decently encapsulated here.
    • John Cochran from South Pacific and Caramoan. He is infamous among the viewers for his infamous flip against his tribe, as well as his annoying tendencies. Despite this, he was brought back as one of the more questionable choices for Caramoan, with a cast of returning players that he is friends with. He received several advantages over the course of the game and was heavily focused on throughout the season, and went on to an easy win. And all the while Jeff continues to fawn over him. This has gotten even worst about how he ended up making an appearance on Game Changers to give Debbie (who has been sent to exile island) some advice, and he manages to get even more confessionals than New Mana.
    • In terms of the actual seasons and not characters, Redemption Island and Caramoan can be this as Jeff praises the heck out of those seasons despite fans having other opinions. This only gotten worst in Caramoan where three people from both of those seasons came back in which other then Andrea, those casting choices from those seasons were questionable with Francesca being voted out first again, Brandon having a meltdown making people unsure if he should have participated this season or not, Cochran/Phillip being both Creator's Pets as well, and many people believing that Holly should have taken Dawn place in the game.
    • Zeke Smith from Millennials vs Gen X is seen as this by some viewers. He was incredibly hyped up by Jeff Probst pre-season, saying that he was the main reason to watch this season. However, to many viewers, he failed to live up to the hype, being overshadowed by more popular male characters from that season including David and Jay. While the hate did seemed to died down after Episode 7 of Game Changers, it picked back up after the merge episode.
    • Kellyn Bechtold in Ghost Island becomes one in the consensus of many fans for always getting a confessional every episode while others who are more mysterious and untouched upon like Chelsea and Gonzalez get gnat-like focus and force fandom to go trawling onto the official YouTube Survivor page to find material that had been cut in favor of spotlighting the bejeezus out of her, because the former is so quiet half the time that production likely found her too boring to focus on and the latter was a first boot. Worse, Kellyn is almost always portrayed like the unfailing source of kindness when she clearly has a scary temper and often mentions her divorce as a major blow to her confidence (which was recent at the time of filming), and fans began to find it very grating and irritating that she didn't live up to be the Teflon warrior production was making her out to be. Ironically, Kellyn starts to become the real bore because her overexposure makes fans tired of being force-fed the same player, like a relationship where neither spouse gets out of the house and become sick of each others' company. Man with a Plan aired an episode about why it's bad to do that on CBS in the same week Kellyn's boot episode took place- it's shocking how much it applies to this obviously over-favored edit.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: Colton (in One World). He once referred to Leif (who is a dwarf) as an "Oompa Loompa", and another time talked about sending him back to Munchkinland. And this is just his relationship with one person...
  • Critical Dissonance:
    • In this Interview, Jeff believes that Caramoan was a great season. Fandom does not share his opinion on Caramoan. Caramoan is also widely derided for having a useless reunion where a Spotlight-Stealing Squad is king and the rest of the cast might as well just be replaced with cardboard cutouts.
    • Generally speaking, whenever Jeff hypes up a season, examples including Caramoan, Worlds Apart, Redemption Island, it is generally poorly received, while seasons that aren't hyped up are generally better received such as San Juan Del Sur.
  • Critical Research Failure: The way they divided Millennials and Gen X (placing 1984 as the first Millennial birth year) conflicts with many definitions of Gen Y/Millennial, which is often cited as starting in 1976. Although until about ten years ago, Gen X was said to begin in 1961, it has now been moved ahead to 1965. Alternately, some use 20 year generations, which would make Baby Boomers 1945-1965, Gen X 1966-1986, and Millennials 1987-2007. This would have likely worked better with what they were going for. However the real reason they picked such a weird, random year is most likely because it was the only way to divide the 20 contestants they picked evenly.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: Some of the worst seasons are the ones with so much drama between unlikable people that nobody cares who wins. These are some of the most infamous examples.
    • All-Stars was viewed as a massive disappointment, particularly from the merge onward. The cast was simply fighting to get as far as possible, as opposed to win, leading to a very blatantly obvious final 2 (and winner for that matter). Everyone is fairly nasty to one another, with the exceptions being voted out before the merge. The winners and better players are voted out on reputation alone, and Rob Mariano backstabs several people in exceedingly cruel ways, before ultimately getting rewarded by it by marrying the winner and coming back 4 more times. Very few people come out with any decent reputation intact (Rudy, Jenna M., Ethan, Shii-Ann, Rob M., Amber). The one and only major saving grace by the end of the season is that the winner is the one reasonably positive, nice person left.
    • Nicaragua can be viewed as this thanks to the tribes being divided by age giving the younger tribe a huge advantage in the challenges, and having two quitters on the season.
    • Redemption Island and One World had many fans believed that a bunch of idiots were just following a clearly alpha leader who was destined to win the game if they made it to the end. Plus, the pre-merge of One World had Colton becoming a Spotlight-Stealing Squad.
    • Ghost Island thanks to the very dull pagonging of the Malolo tribe and how Out of Focus the Naviti tribe has been leading little fans to care about them.
    • Many people had this reaction after the merge episode of Island of the Idols where the people who tried to stand up against Dan being inappropriately handsy with women got in the bottom of the tribe where Dan as well as Missy/Elizabeth (who tried using that behavior to manipulate others) and Lauren (who outright stated that she doesn't care since it didn't happen to her) got in the majority alliance. Fortunately the next episodes improved things; as Missy, Aaron, and Elizabeth were voted off in quick succession (Missy specifically for being a bully towards Karishma), and Dan was ejected later on when he pushed his luck with a crew member.
    • Some early seasons were regarded as this but upon a rewatch end up being extremely funny seasons. Thailand especially was not a popular season due to a pretty unlikable cast, but is one of the funnier seasons for the ridiculousness of Grind-Gate, the Attack Zone, Clay's ridiculous vote for Ghandia which read "Bye bye Denver Diva", Robb Z., Brian the sociopath, Jan's graveyard and Helen's extreme hatred for Clay.
      • Similarly, South Pacific was disliked at the time because the boot order looked to be too obvious and it seemed that Coach or Ozzy was destined to win in a similar manner as Boston Rob. Fortunately, a fan-favorite new player triumphed in one of the best finales for a winner imaginable, and people nowadays like the season for its characters, humor, and storytelling.
  • Designated Villain: Many seasons have at least one through editing. Heroes vs. Villains used this as its gimmick. This is exploited in Cambodia where Spencer and Shirin are hated by their tribe for making fun of Abi-Maria despite the fact that virtually everyone on the tribe treated her the same way and gain no repercussions. Shirin got voted out and Spencer was minus his only ally.
  • Dork Age: People often say this about a season where somebody deemed undeserving wins, or with a cast full of people who are The Quiet One or where everyone's just really mean-hearted, boring, etc.
    • Seasons 9-14 took place in the period after All-Stars when the show was still trying to figure out if it wanted to be more about adventure or strategy, resulting in a lot of hit-and-miss experimentation. Although these seasons have a lot redeeming features if you look at Survivor like a comedy show instead of a reality show.
    • Seasons 22-26 (Philippines and South Pacific being exceptions) due to the trends of, among other things, having a Creator's Pet who the editors make a one-man Spotlight-Stealing Squad, returning players, casts full of players that are too conservative/cowardly to act at best and Too Dumb to Live at worst, if they aren't just Living Props for the Creator's Pet. On top of that, this stretch nearly led to Jeff Probst walking out of the show altogether when he became disenchanted with it.
    • Seasons 34-39 can be viewed as this with the exception of David vs. Goliath thanks to fans believing that the show has become too much about twists with many of those twists ended screwing over fan favorites such as Malcolm, Cirie, Devon, and a lot of members from the original Malolo tribe out of the game.note Then, come to Season 38 where the entire post-merge would have been entirely different without the twist as the final juror and the actual winner were people that were voted out pre-merge but ended up coming back to the game. It is not uncommon for many fans to fear that this show is becoming like Big Brother. Not to mention the cast for Game Changers and Ghost Island has been constantly criticized thanks to the former having questionable casting choices and the latter not having a lot of people making big moves and playing to win. Then season 39 has Dan sexually harassing women and having people use that to vote other people out.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Anyone that gets a villainous edit - be it designated or card-carrying - can get this treatment from part of the fanbase.

    E-L 
  • Elimination Houdini: Has its own page.
  • Ending Aversion: The ending of Heroes Vs. Healers Vs. Hustlers has gotten this treatment thanks to a poorly received final four twist that screwed Devon out of the game, and made Ben (who have been voted out that night had it not been for the twist) into the final three before winning the entire season. To make matters worst, the reunion has been constantly criticized for only speaking with very few people, rivaling it with the Caramoan show as the worst reunion show on Survivor.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Has its own page.
  • Epileptic Trees: Some of the theories in this thread (which documents the history of online Survivor spoilers) can get pretty creative and outlandish, especially the "Follow The Star" theory by a Survivor Sucks poster called "Tapewatcher" which claimed that Ethan would win Africa because the editing symbolized him as Jesus.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Female examples are Parvati, Jerri, Ami, Danielle, Courtney, Abi-Maria, and Corinne. Male examples are Brian, "Boston" Rob, Tyson, Rob Cesternino, Spencer (Cambodia), and Jay.
  • Fan Preferred Pairing:
    • Jerri/Colby is probably the most popular pairing in Survivor history, due to their chemistry, Belligerent Sexual Tension due to conflicting game-plays, and a three-season story arc that saw them go from scorned and bitter rivals in Australian Outback to friends who were happy to see each other in Heroes Vs. Villains. Any video with the two of them have people commenting how much they want them to get together.
    • Another pairing is Devon/Ashley from Heroes vs Healers vs Hustlers, mostly due to their interactions on the show, namely being a secret mini alliance that could remind fans a bit of Rob/Amber, having beach themed jobs(A surf instructor and a lifeguard, respectively), and all of their interactions in Devon's Ponderosa interview.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: There is certain fans who tend to ignore everything that happens after Palau and love everything that involves the "old school" seasons of Survivor believing that the show was at it's best during that time.
  • Fountain of Memes: Discounting Matty's strange smile, every single meme from Gabon originated from Crystal Cox and there are a lot of them.
  • Franchise Original Sin:
    • A major criticism for Redemption Island, South Pacific, and One World is the amount of pagonging (aka a strategy that was invented in the first season) those seasons and how certain alliances that were made very early in the game went to the end together (which happened in the first season as well). Nobody complained about this in Borneo since the show was more about the adventure then strategy at the time but with the show increasingly becoming more about strategy, more people complained about that. The seasons afterwords seems to realize this and does certain things to avoid this problem by either featuring contestants who had a previous relationship of sorts (either through having at least one tribe full of returning players, doing a Blood vs. Water season, or both), doing seasons with three tribes in them, or both.
    • One of the biggest complaints about Game Changers is the lopsided casting that ended up leading some of the biggest names in Survivor to go out pre-merge leaving with the more questionable casting choices post-merge. It should be noted that All-Stars also had a similar complaint as nearly every single threat and strategist were voted out pre-merge. However, it should be noted that while All-Stars had a much more justifiable reason for this given how they were dealing with only seven seasons of Survivor beforehand, Game Changers ended up having thirty-three seasons to work with instead of seven, and hundreds of more castaways since All-Stars making far less likely to have a lopsided casting than it did.
    • According to Jeff Probst, the universally panned Final Four twist in Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers was added to the game for the more savvy players to make it to the end and win in which that is the same reason why production changed the final two to the final three. While the final three has a huge Broken Base in itself, it lacks many of the complaints that the final four twist has such as undermining the significance of winning the final immunity, and removing fundamental social strategy from the game.
  • Foe Yay: Some contestants can be a little-too-obsessed with a fellow castaway they claim they don't like.
    • Jerri and Colby. Enough Said. Bonus: watch this, from 1:58 - 2:16.
    • Jeff Probst and Johnny Fairplay.
    • Russell Hantz was fixated on Boston Rob during Heroes Vs Villains, while everyone else in turn became fixated on Russell.
    • Kelly Wiglesworth and Sue Hawk from Borneo is a pretty sad example, given that they seemed to be good friends at one point.
    • Stephen and Joe from Cambodia. Stephen is seemingly fixated on Joe, calling him "Golden Boy" and "Pretty Boy", while trying to get him out. Joe in turn respects him but isn't as intense in the rivalry, making it kind of one-sided.
    • Jay and Adam from Millennials Vs. Gen-X. They had a very antagonist relationship early and middle of the game, but the fact that Jay seems to be growing fond of Adam and the fact Adam only confided in Jay about his mother puts them here.
    • Kelley Wentworth and David Wright from Edge of Extinction. The two are constantly planning to vote each other out due to seeing each other as threats, but the minute the both of them are in trouble, they easily forgive each other and pair up their respective alliances against whoever is targeting them. Their interactions in episode eight and nine are rather Adorkable, and their earlier interactions sometimes seem like a Slap-Slap-Kiss relationship.
    • There are plenty of one sides rivalries where one player will hate another while that player will be indifferent or even completely unaware of this feud. Some big ones include Shambo vs Laura on Samoa, Vince vs Joe on World's Apart and Coby vs Tom in Palau. It doesn't seem like Laura, Joe or Tom are even aware that the other hates them, in Laura and Tom's case it isn't even clear why the hatred is there (with Vince he was jealous because Jenn talked to Joe).
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • In Marquesas, Paschal makes a funny comment about how much he's enjoying the company of the three women he's with. He then steps down as judge because of a sexual affair with a much younger woman. This also makes his relationship with Neleh a little bit icky.
    • In Fiji, Boo's Blunders are hilarious until the final episode when he tears his ACL. Nobody was laughing then.
    • The Survivor Sucks message board had a running joke they would play on newbies about Borneo's B.B. Andersen having been dead for years. It became a lot less funny on October 29th 2013, when B.B. died for real.
    • The Survivor Sucks message board also had a thread that revolved around the running joke of posting a photo of Africa's Silas Gaither in a provocative pose alongside images of other people simulating Silas "screwing" the person. This thread fell into FAM territory following Gaither's 2019 arrest for rape.
  • Genius Bonus:
    • In South Pacific, Christine angrily calls Coach "King Farouk" after she's voted out. Anyone familiar with the history of this kingnote  could catch this as Foreshadowing on behalf of the editors that Coach was going to lose.
    • In one episode of Marquesas, Zoe compares the raft that her tribe is making for the upcoming reward challenge to Kon-Tiki, the famous raft used by Thor Heyerdahl in the 1940's to demonstrate that indigenous people from South America may have settled in Polynesia at one point. Heyerdahl first envisioned this hypothesis (which would later be largely discredited) while living in the Marquesas Islands.
    • Before Edge of Extinction, Jeff compared the season's editing to that of a murder mystery and whodunit. While his comment was initially chalked up as being another exaggeration to hype of the season, after the finale, some fans found that the storyline and ending was shockingly similar to a particular story by the famous murder mystery novelist Agatha Christie. The story? And Then There Were None.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff:
    • When Survivor: Borneo aired in Australia, B.B. was perhaps one of the most popular characters, and the general consensus was that the Pagong tribe, apart from B.B., were lazy.
    • In similar vein, the "villains" of early editions (read: scheming people that managed to strategise their way to victory with their wits and social skills) were considered the heroes and were popular in Poland. This is especially notable in case of Borneo, where everyone started rooting for Tagi and their alliance the moment it was set up, seeing it as the only sane tactic and something worth following, rather than watching bunch of random layabouts in an exotic backdrop.
    • When Survivor first aired, it became extremely popular in Canada. And it has remained consistently popular throughout the years, with many Canadians still loving it and wishing they were allowed to participate in a season until they were finally allowed to join as of Island of the Idols.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Before Thailand, Jeff had said that the cast of that season looked to be the best that the show had so far. Thailand to this day remains to be Jeff's least favorite season.
    • Before the car challenge that Cindy won in Guatemala , Lydia says she is going to try to win it for her teenage son. Less than a year later, her only son would die in a car crash.
    • In Richard's last confessional, he says that "a million dollars could really change someone's life." It changed his, but for the worst; the tax snafu whose origin is still debated by fans put him in prison for years and is still something that haunts his image til this day.
    • Jokes about Michael Skupin being a sociopath become a lot less funny after he was faced with charges of child pornography and running a Ponzi scheme.
      • It makes his post-Outback vignettes much more difficult, considering all his talk about his newfound love for God and how he loves working with children.
    • Brandon Hantz's crusade against Mikayla Wingle either becomes this or Hilarious in Hindsight (depending how you feel about the Hantzs'), when you find out she had a relationship with Russell Hantz after South Pacific - which may or may not have contributed to him and his wife divorcing.
    • Adam's comments about his mother in Millennials vs Gen X become a lot sadder now since people knew that she died two days after filming.
    • Some people pegged Pat as the first boot of David vs. Goliath due to the pre-season interviews which ended up featuring some contestants not being a fan of his. Technically, Pat was the first boot but the reasons why he was the first boot were much more tragic as his tribemates were really sad to lose him.
    • The firing of casting director Lynne Spillman after Edge of Extinction can come across as this when Island of the Idols, the first season she had no hand in deciding who gets on, ended up having some very controversial characters in Dan, Missy, and Elizabeth due to the events that transpired within the merge episode; making it seem like it was a mistake to fire her.
    • Within Island of the Idols as well, there was a scene in Episode 3 where where everybody in the original Lairo tribe ignored Karishma's hand injury. Everybody was confused about that moment when it first aired, but fast forward to the merge episode, those same people that are still around choose to ignore the sexual harassment allegations that were made by Karisha's allies as well; causing the Survivor fanbase to turn on a lot of them.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Amber mentioned in her audition tape for Australia that the host visited her in a dream and told her she would win. Which she did...the second time she played.
    • Thailand, where Brian won the reward challenge and won video tape of his wife, C.C. C.C wants him to win so they can go to Fiji. 9 seasons later, Survivor also went to Fiji themselves.
    • In an early episode of Pearl Islands, after arguing with Sandra, Jonny Fairplay declared in a confessional that "I got a million that says she won't be the final one!" Guess who ended being the first two-time winner?
    • In the "Meet the Cast" videos for Samoa, Jeff mentions that Russell apparently doesn't realize it's a social game - guess what comes back and bites him in the ass?
    • Hayden Moss originally applied to be on Survivor but CBS asks him to be on Big Brother instead and so he did. Come to Blood vs. Water, he actually went to play on that season. And from a more-so production standpoint of things, Fabio went to take his place in the season he applied. Guess who ended up winning Nicaragua and Big Brother 12?
    • In the cast assessment for Cagayan, Jeff described Spencer of having "zero point zero chance of winning" based on his interactions with him. Fifteen days into the season, Spencer becomes one of his favorite players. And when Spencer DID make it into the final three in Cambodia, believing he had a fairly good shot of winning? Jeremy proceeds to win in a landslide with every single vote out of a ten-person jury, meaning Spencer really DID have zero point zero chance of winning!
    • After the tribal shuffle, the former Blue Collar tribe Escameca from Worlds Apart, who has Blue Color Motif to boot, becomes a male-dominated tribe with one female member. Said female member is blond and is an original Blue Collar tribe member. Appropriately, the Trope Namer for The Smurfette Principle has blue skin and blond hair. Time will tell if they'll get called "The Smurfs" tribe" though.
    • After losing a challenge in Marquesas, Sean mentioned that he needed the lawyer John Cochran. 19 seasons later on South Pacific, one of the contestants is a law student named John Cochran.
    • San Juan Del Sur
      • Val claims to have two idols. In Cambodia, her husband Jeremy would end up finding two idols... which he names Val's idols. So she wasn't lying after all!
      • In the same season, Drew Christy in his boot episode warned the tribe that Kelley Wentworth was the biggest threat and was at the center of an all-girls alliance, despite Kelley barely having any screentime up to that point. Come Cambodia, he ends up being right...
      • An earlier episode has the Hunahpu tribe declaring that their members will dominate the top five. It happened in Cambodia when three of the season's alumni who all came from said tribe made the top five, with one ultimately winning the game.
    • In One World, Sabrina said early on "Nobody remembers second place!" Guess what place she ended up? It's taken even further where she failed to earn enough votes to make the cut for Second Chance.
    • In Africa, Carl, a baby boomer, criticizes his younger Gen X tribemates, calling them lazy with no work ethic. Fast forward fifteen years to Millennials vs Gen X, where the Gen Xers are criticizing the millennials for their lack of work ethic, and having everything handed to them.
    • Just the mere fact that Ozzy's fake hidden immunity idol became a real idol in Ghost Island makes the whole entire thing about that all the more hilarious.
    • After Purple Kelly's Out of Focus edit in Nicaragua, many fans started to call people who are Out of Focus as "Purple _______". Come to Ghost Island when the double tribal council had the final ten be split into temporary tribes and the purple tribe contains almost everybody with an Out of Focus edit.
    • Before Ghost Island was filmed, Jeff Probst described what will happen in the event of a tie at the final tribal council during the Game Changers reunion. It's almost as if Jeff predicted what ended up happening in the season he was about to film.
    • John Cody stated that one of his pet peeves is people who eat paper. Come to an international season of Survivor in Survivor South Africa: Philippines, there was a contestant who ended up eating a piece of paper in the idol clue.
    • In One World, Matt guessed that there would be a twist where both tribes would go to Tribal Council and vote out one person collectively. This later happened in Game Changers.
  • "Holy Shit!" Quotient: The ending of Ghost Island has this big time! After the jury casts their votes, Jeff Probst comes out to read the votes (aka something that only has happened once in Borneo thanks to Early Installment Weirdness). As it turns out, the results of that tribal council happened to be a tie, making it the first ever tie at the final tribal council in Survivor history. This even extends In-Universe as the jury is hugely surprised by that outcome.
  • Iron Woobie: Stephenie LaGrossa is seen as this first in Palau when she was alone on the Ulong tribe, and then again after Heroes vs. Villains - some unconfirmed rumors state that she was eliminated because she was still hurting from having her shoulder dislocated in the first challenge in the game.
  • It's the Same, So It Sucks: Some of the criticisms of the show for returning to previous filming locations (Panama, Samoa). Even some of the producers have thought this, but in between the weathernote  and political unrestnote , finding a new location for the show is easier said than done, especially since they have to have worthy housing for three hundred people. They even stated that some locations are out due to problems with the area, such as Africa wherein everyone was sick and too hot to do anything, Guatemala where the temperature would regularly be over one hundred degrees F, or Marquesas where the insects inflicted quite a bit of discomfort amongst the contestants and staff. Therefore, reusing locations is a necessary evil, and plenty of the staff would love to go to new locations too.
    • Taken to frustrating levels with Fiji, which as of Winners at War has been the location of eight straight seasons, effectively destroying the Setting as a Character aspect that many were originally drawn to series with and pushing an increased focus on gimmick themes. Jeff Probst very publicly expressing a desire for the show to never leave the country hasn't helped matters.
  • It Was His Sled: In general, any winner can be viewed as this, but especially Sanda Diaz-Twine, who won twice. It doesn't help that most of the DVD covers ended up having the winner be placed in the top center. Similar to that, a lot of people who lost the game can be well-known in the fandom especially Russell Hantz.
    • Erik giving up immunity is very well-known in the fandom.
    • Cochran's flip in South Pacific could count as one since a lot people seem to talk about that for a lot of seasons later.
    • Both of the "big moves" Ciera ended up making in her first season with her voting out her mother and being ready to draw rocks can be very well-known in the fandom. Memetic Mutation may have a role in the former.
    • Both Colby (in Australian Outback) and Woo losing the game because of them taking the wrong person in the end can be viewed as this as a lot of people considered that to some of the dumbest moves made on Survivor and the latter became what Woo was most notable about.
    • With Fan Nicknames such as "pagonging", "ulonging", and "matsinging", people are very well aware of the fates of those three tribes.
    • Jonny Fairplay's dead grandmother lie has became a very ironic moment in the show that a lot of people already knew about that.
    • Russell loses repeatedly, in part thanks to all the controversy surrounding it (Mostly generated and fueled by him).
  • Jerkass Woobie: Many:
    • Jerri Manthey in Australian Outback, before Heroes vs Villains helped restore her reputation. The woman had loads of crap dumped upon her, especially after getting booed at the All-Stars reunion.
    • Lex, While Lex did vote out Colby, Ethan and Jerri, Lex was screwed over after doing a favor for his friend in real life.
    • Dreamz. Even though he clearly regretted going back on his word to Yau-Man, he was brutalized for it months after the show ended.
    • Brandon Hantz is a notable example. The guy's a hotheaded jerk, no doubt, but it's clear that he has a lot of issues.
    • With the death of his partner Caleb, Colton from One World and Blood vs. Water.
    • Rodney from Worlds Apart could be one too since he has never won a reward postmerge.
    • Jeff Probst qualifies too, since he and Jennifer Lyon were close friends and she sadly passed away from breast cancer.
    • Richard Hatch, from all the way back in Borneo. The guy's been bullied all his life for being gay, which at first he acted straight so nobody would notice and had a son. He got a lot of hate for coming out of the closet and what's more, the tax snafu involving his million cheque has tarnished his image forever. You can't help but feel bad for the guy even if he was arguably a "villain".
    • Jay Starrett. While he was a smug antagonist for most of the game, he really was only trying his best to play for his mother and sister. He then breaks down with Adam in episode 12 when they tell each other about their respective mothers, with Jay admitting that his mother has had many brain aneurysms for the past nine years and is afraid she'll die one day.
    • With the passing of Dan Kay, Randy Bailey becomes this. Listening to Rob Has A Podcast: Remembering Dan Kay reveals that the Dan and Randy were especially close, and it's hard not to feel sorry for him when he sounds like he's on the verge of breaking down a few times.
    • Jeff Varner in Game Changers to some fans. While he pulled an incredibly underhanded move by outing Zeke as transgender, it has had a devastating impact on his life, such as becoming suicidal and losing his job, despite being genuinely remorseful.
    • Joe Mena. While the Jerkass is more prevalent than the Woobie, his story of how his parents' divorce ruined his faith in relationships definitely deserves sympathy
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Whom or what, exactly, is the Godzilla varies from one viewer to the next. For example, some viewers keep watching because Jeff Probst is still hosting.
  • LGBT Fanbase:
    • Kimmi Kappenberg has a huge gay following on social media. Hashtags such as #gays4kimmi or #gaysforkimmi are popular on Twitter, Tumblr, and other web places.
    • In an interview with Sandra, Rob from Rob Has a Podcast mentioned she had an LGBT fanbase.
  • Love to Hate: Richard Hatch and "Boston" Rob; both play hard and talk big but ultimately treat the game with as much seriousness as reality TV deserves (that is, little to none). Sandra too - she's abrasive, but her "cut the crap" attitude can be very refreshing.

    M-R 
  • Memetic Badass:
    • At the time Borneo aired, it was assumed (true or not) that Greg Buis would 100% have won the game if he actually cared to, rather than spend his time trolling the producers.
    • Samoa contestant Dave Ball, aka "Danger Dave."
    • Sandra Diaz-Twine gets this a lot, being (for 20 seasons) the only two-time winner in the history of Survivor. Upon the reveal in Winners at War that Tony Vlachos was the second two-time winner, she became this even moreso, since he was evidently only permitted to win once she stopped trying to stop him (haven taken him out swiftly to preserve her title a little longer in Game Changers).
    • JP Hilsabeck himself has become inflated into a Memetic Badass due to being kept so Out of Focus and somewhat lost and aimless in his season that Survivor message boards and fandom joke he's actually a secret mastermind playing under the radar and controlling the game. (He's not.)
    • Lil from Pearl Islands has a touch of this. In every single episode she's in, she is the most pathetic person we've ever seen on Survivor. She cries at the drop of a hat, is horribly incapable of performing in most challenges, and is incapable of performing anything you'd expect a scoutmaster to be able to do. Suddenly in her final episode she kicks the ass of one of the series's most notorious villains in the final challenge while shutting down every attempt of his to negotiate, then sends him home (and just before he can worm his way into a win too!) over fan-favorite Sandra. Because of this, some believe she's actually a powerful force of good, just laying dormant until just the right moment.
    • Certain winners have received this status for being extremely dominant, but none moreso than Kim Spradlin.
    • Tony Vlachos for being a two time winner, and for handily defeating all the other winners in Winners at War.
  • Memetic Loser: One should note that most examples of this are Played for Laughs by fans and are not generally hated or even looked down on much in any way (excluding the ones found here)
    • Francesca from 1 episode each of Redemption Island and Caramoan. Getting voted out first twice is a very good way for her to be this.
    • Oddly for a winner who had the first "perfect game" (no votes to eliminate and all jury votes) in Survivor history, J.T. has become this. Why? Because in each of his appearances since his win, he wound up masterminding his own elimination by making utterly atrocious moves involving idols and trusting people from other tribes over his own tribe. It has gotten to the point that a good portion of the fandom credits Stephen for J.T.'s strong Tocantins performance over J.T. himself.
    • Many people with Out of Focus edits such as Chelsea Townsend (Ghost Island), Brenda Lowe (Caramoan), and Joe Del Campo (Kaoh Rong) tend to receive this treatment. However, the most notable one to receive this treatment is Purple Kelly (Nicaragua) thanks to many people calling people who are Out of Focus "Purple ______" after her season.
    • Boston Rob has also received this treatment. While he did win Redemption Island, many people criticized how it took four seasons to do so. Not to mention the fact that he didn't even make the jury phase of the game for two of those seasons. In addition, the season that he won had many people accused of the castaways being a bunch of idiots who were too starstruck to vote him out. As of Winners At War, he's had a perfect split of being eliminated pre-jury (or pre-merge in the case for Winners at War) in seasons with good players (Marquesas, Heroes vs. Villains, and Winners At War), and making the final tribal council in seasons with weak competition (All Stars and Redemption Island)
    • Ben Driebergen also has received this treatment in Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers as he needed to play three idols and have a fire-making twist in the game that none of the castaways knew about to even make it to the final three. This increased exponentially in Winners at War, where he is consistently delusional, believing himself to be the biggest threat in the game amidst 19 more competent winners and accidentally costs his friend the game whilst trying to hand her the win.
    • Chris Underwood (Edge of Extinction) for being the sole winner that got voted out within his own season.
    • Erik Reichenbach gave up immunity in Micronesia. While his Memetic Loser status was not exactly set in stone after that, the fact the show is still talking about it 23 seasons after that mistake cause many fans to jump him in that category.
  • Memetic Molester: Jerri Manthey in Australia, thanks to her Erotic Eating fetish. Silas Gaither from Africa as well (which got a lot less funny when he was arrested for rape).
  • Misaimed Fandom: Several people outright think that you got to make big moves to win the game. However, often times, these big moves are often not the right moves as people will view them as an idiot (Example- Ozzy voting himself out to beat Christine at the Redemption Island duel in South Pacific was advertised as a big move when in actuality, it was viewed by many people as a stupid move, and Cochran flipping on his tribe soon after, all it did was earn him the ire of his former tribe members and put himself at the bottom of another tribe, which resulted in him being voted out right after his old tribe members were eliminated). In fact, some of the best winners of all-time do not have a big move in mind (Example- Parvati during the season that she won did not really make a "big move" as she wasn't really the person who responsible for the blindsides of Ozzy, Jason, Alexis, and Erik as she won Micronesia because of her social game and leading the Black Widow Brigade).
  • Mis-blamed:
    • In South Pacific, Coach questions his alliance with Brandon Hantz after finding out he's related to Russell Hantz, because he remembers how Russell said he was also a man of god and then voted him out in Heroes vs. Villains...however, Russell didn't vote for Coach at his Final Tribal Council. In fact; Russell actually voted with him. It didn't matter.
    • Also, some people started hating Ben Driebergen for the infamous final four twist in Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers despite the fact that the twist was not Ben's idea. If anybody were to take blame for that twist, it would be production.
    • Many controversial picks for returnee seasons get hated on even though production had to ask them first to come back. All they did was not pass up another chance at 1 million dollars.
  • Moe: Colleen Haskell, Amber Brkich and Elisabeth Filarski, Kim Powers, Eliza Orlins, Michelle Yi, Courtney Yates, Sugar Kiper, and Chelsea Walker.
  • More Popular Replacement: Both Christian Hubicki and John Hennigan from David vs. Goliath ended up filling regular archetypes on the show with the former having the nerd archetype like Cochran or Ryan, and the latter having the male professional athlete archetype like Jeff Kent, Brad Culpepper, or Scot Pollard. However, while a lot of castaways before them were polarizing at best, Christian and John managed to be well-liked in the Survivor community as many people found the former to be endearing and the latter manages to be a Gentle Giant instead of how much of the professional athletes tends to be treated as villains on the show.
  • Narm:
    • Rupert's explosion towards Jon following the sixth tribal council in Pearl Islands should at least cause a chuckle to first time viewers.
      Rupert: Who the hell voted for me? WHO THE HELL VOTED FOR ME?! JON?!
      Fairplay: Yeah?
      Rupert: WHO THE HELL VOTED FOR ME?!
      Fairplay: I did.
      Rupert: WHAT THE (deleted) WAS THAT (deleted) TONIGHT?!
      Fairplay: I was down for Drake, dude. I made-
      Rupert: Dammit, LOOK AT ME!
      Fairplay: I'M LOOKING AT-
      Rupert: WHAT THE (deleted) WAS THAT (deleted)-
      Fairplay: I made a decision based on Drake!
      Rupert: YOU'RE STARTING TO (deleted) NOW! Damn.
    • Kat crying about Hayden breaking up with her because she didn't make the merge is worth a chuckle.
    • During one reward of South Pacific, the Upolu tribe watched a screening of Jack and Jill with most of them enjoying it. Given how people found the film to be one of the worst films ever made, it is hard for people to take them actually liking the movie seriously. Albert and Coach have admitted they were cued to laugh by production since they also hated the movie off-camera.
    • The Anvilicious nature of Millennials vs. Gen X can be seen as this with the worst example coming into mind is Jeff asking Sunday if she writes "you" or "u" when she is texting somebody.
    • On several live viewings of the show, hashtags will randomly pop up, informing you of what you should be talking about later and completely ruining any and all tension a scene might have.
    #SurvivorBreakdown!
    • The fact that Ozzy's fake hidden immunity idol from Micronesia was living on Ghost Island for a decade to fully mature into a hidden immunity according to the note has received an amused reaction from a lot of fans.
  • Narm Charm: A lot of the aesthetic design can receive this reaction. It's cheesy as heck most of the time, but that's not stopping a seriously intense million dollar game from being played.
  • Nausea Fuel: People do get hurt there. Heck, it's an inherent risk, especially in the seasons in which they have fighting challenges.
    • One particular moment following a rather vicious looking challenge in Fans vs. Favorites had many viewers looking away from the TV screaming, "EW EW EW EW EW!!!" or feeling like they were about to lose their lunch, where Jonathan Penner received a puncture wound to the knee and had to be evacuated from the game due to an infection that could potentially have taken out his leg. They actually showed the medic irrigating the puncture wound on TV to show how bad it was.
    • The Kaoh Rong premiere featured Jennifer who had a worm in her ear and was suffering hugely because of it. She was clearly in pain and her describing her pain in great detail could make some squeamish viewers squirm.
    • Once again in Kaoh Rong, THREE people went down after the Episode 4 reward challenge, and medical had to check three people all at once, with the entire crew involved, ultimately ending up with one player being evacuated.
  • Never Live It Down: The especially manipulative, deceitful, or heavy-handed contestants tend to get treated this way, In-show and out, along with the What an Idiot! contestants.
    • The accusations by Borneo contestant Stacey Stillman that the producers persuaded Sean and Dirk into voting her off so they could save the more colorful Rudy, and Dirk's eventual admittance in court that this was true, has cast a shadow over the show for years and made many viewers question whether any other game influencing Executive Meddling has taken place.
    • Marquesas has this in two parts: the first is that the location had so much discomfort from the bugs that it will never be used again. The second and more infamous is that because Paschal refused to vote off Neleh (his best friend in the game), and took the fall by the Purple Rock. In future season, there are instances that contestants betrayed alliance-mates so they don't end up forcing a tie and risk drawing the infamous rock themselves. Drawing rocks did return for Blood Vs Water, thanks to Hayden's clever Batman Gambit though.
    • Jonny Fairplay's infamous "Dead Grandma Lie". The lie was so successful, he was able to get his tribe to throw him a reward challenge, and used that lie to gain leverage throughout the game. Since then, contestants have been wary of others using real-life events to gain sympathy. The biggest example is in China during the family visit when Todd says his sister had a miscarriage, and Courtney doesn't buy it, directly referencing the dead grandma lie.
    • Lex van den Berghe after All-Stars. Before All-Stars, Lex's reputation was that of a highly competent strategist and very good physical player, albeit a slightly paranoid and emotional one. After his attempt at making a risky deal with Rob to improve his game failed, and having denied Rob the win just to spite him, he is now thought of in a much less flattering light. Let's just leave it at that.
    • Fiji has this in two parts: first is the Haves vs. Have Nots twist, which the producers and Probst believe was a failed experiment. The second is the infamous car deal where Dreamz went back on his word to Yau-Man. Since then, the car challenge was never used again.
    • The show itself is never going to live down Russell...especially since they keep finding ways directly and indirectly work him until One World.
    • Caramoan has this in spades.
      • The poor casting on both sides, with over half of the fans being recruits that haven't even seen the show, and over half of the favorites coming from two of the most disliked seasons, Redemption Island and South Pacific. Not to mention that some of the choices for favorites were questionable at best, Francesca was a first boot, Phillip is polarizing at best, Brandon clearly has issues and was not mentally well in South Pacific, Cochran was unpopular for his flip in ''South Pacific'.
      • Brandon's meltdown in Episode 5 is considered to be one of the lowest points for the show, as the producers brought back Brandon for another season despite the fact that he clearly had issues and personal demons the first time around, and cast him again despite knowing he had issues. This led to a confrontation with Phillip that just barely avoided turning violent. The worst part for many viewers was that the producers were clearly exploiting this for ratings.
      • The conflict with Brenda and Dawn. After Brenda helps Dawn find her teeth, Dawn swears her life on Brenda. After Brenda wins the loved ones reward and offers to take Dawn, she is then given the choice to give it up so everyone else can see their loved ones. Dawn, Cochran, and Sherri team up to vote out Brenda that night, and Brenda was absolutely distraught. This led to a firestorm on Dawn's twitter where she was attacked by fans for her betrayal, forcing Dawn to shut down her Twitter account. Then, at Final Tribal Council, Brenda demands that Dawn take out her teeth for the sole purpose of humiliating her.
      • The cherry on top was the reunion. The prejurors were not allowed on stage (most likely to cover the absence of Brandon), and some players on the stage (including Sherri, a finalist, and Erik who was medically evacuated) didn't even get a chance to speak. Rather than letting the players speak, Jeff brings up Boston Rob to shill a book, talks to Rudy in the audience, and talks to a young girl who can barely form a sentence, and you get a horrible reunion show.
    • Much like Caramoan, Game Changers had this in spades as well.
      • The questionable casting choices had many fans believing it left the season with a lopsided cast. To start with, not many fans view a lot of the cast members as game-changing castaways causing people to hate the cast before the season even began. Then, it got worst by having many of contestants that actually changed the game go out pre-merge due to them being huge threats in the game, and the more questionable casting choices made it to the merge with the final four of that season each containing a WTH, Casting Agency? entry listed below. Because of that, a lot of people view the season being better if the boot order was reversed.
      • Jeff Varner outing Zeke as transgender on national television. Everyone was so disgusted with him that he was booted without even taking a vote as it was already clear everyone would be voting for him, and he reportedly dreaded the public reaction so much in the months before the episode aired that he considered suicide.
      • Finally, we have advantagegeddon where the final six tribal council of that season had everybody played their idols and advantages causing Cirie to be voted out simply because she was the only one to not be immune that tribal council. Many fans were upset over that causing a backlash against idols and advantages in general.
    • Lauren Rimmer having the chance to use a Hidden Immunity Idol and an extra vote but leaving the vote back at camp and entrusting half of the idol to Mike Zahalsky, who tossed it into the Tribal Council fire, followed by Ben controlling the entire vote to eliminate Lauren.
    • The final four twist in Heroes Vs. Healers Vs. Hustlers seems to be heading in this direction. People were extremely upset over how Devon got screwed over by the twist, and believe that production rigged the game in Ben's favor. However, that moment was slowing being subverted for the season as a whole thanks to it becoming Vindicated by History as listed below.
    • Laurel from Ghost Island will forever be known as the idiot who took Wendell and Domenick (aka the two biggest threats on the season) to the end with her.
    • Based upon the number of jokes about things maturing on Ghost Island, you may be surprised that only one episode mentions things actually maturing on Ghost Island. However, fans tend to act like a bunch of things were matured there.
    • Erik Reichenbach giving up immunity is something the show doesn't seem to live it down due to how a clip of Erik doing that ended up showing up in Island of the Idols (aka 23 seasons after Micronesia).
    • Averted for Kellee Kim as the merge episode in Island of the Idols has her become the second castaway to be voted out with 2 idols in her pocket, but due to the controversy surrounding Dan Spilo in the same episode, she doesn't have the Never Live It Down status James has for when he had that happen to him in China.
    • Played straight with Elizabeth Beisel and Missy Byrd however, as while nearly every merge contestant apart from Kellee, Karishma, and Janet got some flack for how the situation with Dan was handled, these two in particular were notorious for how they outright used the situation to get Kellee out while keeping Dan in the game for their own sakes. It got to the point where Elizabeth was conspicuously absent from the Reunion, likely out of shame and fear for her own safety.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Africa had the tribes living in the middle of lion territory and they had to keep two players on watch at all times through the night. Just a few days into the game the players are woken up by the sound of multiple lions growling as they pace around their camp, and later on Ethan and Kim listen in horror as a lion stands right outside the camp roaring in the middle of the night. And keep in mind, their only protection is a six-foot high fence made of thorn bushes.
  • Older Than They Think:
    • The concept originated in Sweden as Expedition Robinson back in 1997. It was picked up by CBS in 2000, and the rest is history.
    • Certain twists. Tribal switches had happened before Africa, and the concept of Redemption Island was actually used in previous international versions of Survivor, often called "Island of the Dead" or "Island Of Purgatory".
  • Old Guard Versus New Blood: As the strategy of Survivor become more complex over the years, less emphasis has been placed on certain aspects that brought older fans into the show in the first place (such as the adventure element, which has sadly been more or less ignored starting around the Russell Hantz era of Survivor) . As more and more twists became commonplace on the show (the hidden immunity idol, for example), there was also less time for character development. Old Guard fans complained about all the time being spent on strategy and twists, which lead to generic and dull seasons such as fan unfavorites Fiji and Redemption Island. These complaints consequently led to the producers casting Spotlight-Stealing Squad contestants like Coach, Rob, and Russell, and editing the show in the over the top style that we see in the "new blood" seasons. Of course, Old Guard fans still haven't gotten what they wanted, and they complain that the lack of adventure and character development in these newer seasons is even worse than they were in Cook Islands or Fiji, while on the other side of the equation, the New Blood fans complain about the older seasons for being boring and lacking in strategy.
    • This is actually what drives most of the conflict who deserved to win between the two major finalists in Heroes vs Villains, Parvati and Sandra. Parvati represents the New Blood in terms of playing a very strategic game, while Sandra represents the Old Guard by playing a very social game.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Technically 2-scenes, but C.C. Heidik from Thailand appeared on a video as part of a loved ones challenge, where she proceeded to completely blow Brian's cover while dancing in a sexualized manner (That the male members of the tribe just loved). This especially notable in that it was the only time in the entire season that it looked like Brian could possibly be in any danger.
  • Overshadowed by Controversy: Worlds Apart has this in terms of sexism. The three Scrappy characters all stated sexist comments in some shape or form making it the main reason why the season is considered Seasonal Rot. It doesn't help that Jeff spent 50% of the reunion talking about the sexist comments Dan and Will make while 25% of the reunion was spent on the Cambodia cast and the other 25% of the reunion was actually talking major gameplay events in the game.
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    S 
  • Sacred Cow: Aside from some complaints about predictability, it's nigh impossible to find any fan who genuinely dislikes Borneo or its characters, same for The Australian Outback. Partially because they're so different than the later seasons, being more about random people navigating new territory socially and survival-wise, rather than the people that mainly signed up for a game show come Africa and beyond.
  • The Scrappy: Has its own page.
  • Scrappy Mechanic
    • The Hidden Immunity Idols. In their earlier seasons, they weren't easy to find, thus making it a true treasure hunt. Ever since Samoa, the idols are now hidden in the near vicinity of the camp, in very easy to find places. This has lead to players finding them easily (at least those savvy enough to look for them) and being able to use several of them throughout the season, with Russell Hantz being the most well known example at how he'd find and use so many of them. Fans have grown tired of this ease to find the idols, as they feel it can interfere with the strategic portions of the game if the players are more focused on running around the island to find the idols than on anything else. This is not helped by rumors that the camera crew outright points out the idol locations to certain players, an allegation supported by several players themselves.
    • Having returning players tends to give them an unfair advantage in both experience and the fact that the new players are a little starstruck and also leads to them hogging all the screen time. In Redemption Island and South Pacific Rob's tribe wound up following him like a cult and Ozzy's and Coach's tribes weren't much better . Though to be fair, Russell was put at an equally large disadvantage; his tribe throwing a challenge to get him out. Still, being a returning player does give you an advantage over new players, as long as you have the ability to learn from past mistakes.
    • For some of the fans, the change to Final Three seems like this. Probst said that it is used to help future fan favorites to win. However, contestants simply mostly voted off the one who most likely to win at the Final 4 anyway. Also, Final Three reduces the level of backstabbing compared to older seasons. Furthermore, the season that started this new feature (Cook Islands) given viewers and contestants no prior warning. Also, in most Final Threes, It is an effective Final Two due to one finalist being a goat (being hated, viewed as a terrible goat or both.)
    • Redemption Island, from the season of the same name and South Pacific, has several problems associated with it: It cheapened the Tribal Council vote by allowing another path to winning, with the possibility to eliminate the entire "vote people out and then convince them to give you a million dollars" concept that is at the core of the show's drama. It made players play more conservatively instead of shaking things up; as there's less of an incentive to pursue a controversial vote if the victim could come back. Reward challenges were replaced by RI eliminations, cutting off a source of creating drama for the tribe and giving it to those already halfway gone. Finally, it ultimately meant nothing since there was little effect on the boot order: Matt, Andrea, Ozzy (both times) and Tina were voted out quickly when they came back.
    • Having exactly eight members on the jury can be this. This can increase the event a tie at final tribal council, Especially at Micronesia's final tribal council which had two finalists. It doesn't help that until Worlds Apart, every season with eight jurors had some form of irregular elimination, making it look like they affect the jury numbers. Also, can this cut out people who can make great a jury speech like Corinne in Caramoan.
    • Zigzagged with the tribal swaps. Many fans feel that a tribal swap can screwed over a contestant making them go home because of the lack of the numbers on their side with the swaps in China, and Ghost Island being the worst examples. On the other hand, many fans feel like it heavily decreases the chance of a pagonging thus it can be enjoyable.
    • The "Tyler Perry" Idol in Cagayan. Basically it ensures a free spot to the Final Four. Granted, Terry and Yul had it first.
    • The twist at the end of Kaoh Rong that allowed the winner of a challenge to take a player off of the jury. It was criticized for diluting the concept of the game and robbing the jurors who have spent their time at Ponderosa a chance to decide a winner. Especially for Neal, who was pulled from the game and spent the most time at Ponderosa and was robbed of a vote, giving Michele the win over Aubry which has caused much of the internet to explode.
    • Splitting tribes into age seems to be one with most fans stating that the younger people are more likely to win challenges then the older people. This is one of the reasons why Nicaragua became a Seasonal Rot and why some people have been nervous going into Millennials vs Gen X.
    • The Reward Steal Advantage from Millennials vs Gen X has gotten some flak since it does not hugely impact the game and stealing somebody's reward is more likely to piss somebody off just because you wanted somebody's reward.
    • Game Changers had a lot of these:
      • Some fans felt this way for the new tie vote rules in which there being no revote and they will automatically go to a discussion on who to vote out as they felt that the twist was rigged for huge idol finders. Come to the actual season, there was absolutely zero ties due to the fear of a lot of castaways having to go to rocks causing fans to believe that certain strategic elements were removed from the game such as attempting to split the votes and the possible risks that could come with it such as one person flipping.
      • The two tribes going to Tribal Council to vote one person without both of tribes being able to communicate to one and another. A lot of people were upset that Malcolm manages to be completely screwed over by that twist.
      • Debbie receiving an advantage of missing a tribal, feasting and relaxing, and getting strategy advice from a totally exterior source (in which that source has been accused of being a Creator's Pet before). What makes this Scrappy Mechanic is that Debbie received this advantage via complete luck.
      • Generally speaking, the massive amount of advantages and idols in that season made it very hard for the viewers to keep track at home. This comes full circle where at the final six, the amount of idols along with legacy advantage caused fan favorite Cirie to be voted out just solely by default as everybody else was immune.
    • The final four twist in Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers where the final immunity winner gets to pick one person to come with them in the end, and the other two get to make fire. After Ben has won, there has been many accusations of Survivor rigging the game for Ben to win, and Devon getting screwed over. Not only that, but the twist also has been complained for removing the significance of winning the final immunity challenge as well as any of the social strategy.
    • Much like Redemption Island, the Edge of Extinction twist cheapens the outcome of tribal council given how nobody is voted out for good. It lends a hand in the controversial win of Chris Underwood as noted under Seasonal Rot below and in Winners At War, while Natalie A didn't win due to it, she is able to collect a lot of advantages and social connections to make her runner up despite being initially the first eliminated.
    • Island of the Idols itself isn't seen as one, as its detractors see it as something that takes away screen time from tribal dynamics. However, no one liked the way Jamal's challenge was implemented. Basically, he got screwed over in order to be taught a pointless lesson and was eliminated that very episode.
  • Seasonal Rot:
    • Thailand was seen as a hit and miss, thanks to a winner that could have been seen coming a mile away (as well as being one of the most unlikable winners ever), boring and unimaginative challenges, and generally not having as many high points as other seasons.
    • All-Stars: The bigger threats (read: former winners and strategists who did well on their original seasons) were voted out pre-merge. And due to contestants having developed friendships outside the show, the castaways ended up taking the game personally, leading to a Final Tribal Council that mostly consist of Reason Why You Suck Speeches. Not helped by the fact that the eventual winner was one of the more irrelevant contestants of their original season who had mostly gotten votes because of the jury hating the other finalist, who showed themselves to be a dominant player (if divisive with the fanbase).
    • Fiji also was hit with this and They Changed It, Now It Sucks!; because only one person on the show actually applied. Another reason for this was the general Jerkass-ness of the cast combined with a dull predictable pre-merge game thanks to a "have and have nots" twist resulting in the "have not" tribe losing every single tribal Immunity Challenge with only tribe swaps making things interesting. The producers also admitted after the season that it was a failed experiment.
    • Redemption Island with the unnecessary return of infamous spotlight stealers Boston Rob and Russell. While Russell was voted off third, it became clear that only one of the tribes had the power to dominate the season, and once they Pagonged their opposition, it was clear that Boston Rob had zero chance of losing. Add in the amount of shilling worked into every single episode, as well as a Finale that can be best summed up as "isn't Rob awesome?", and you end up with an almost universally despised season.
    • South Pacific repeated many of the negatives of Redemption Island, with the only positive differences being that the edit somewhat showed everyone off and a newbie managed to win (because the favored returning player lost the Final Immunity Challenge). It also introduced Cochran & Brandon, two divisive players that took up a lot of screentime. It’s admittedly pretty funny as well, and the Rewatch Bonus is pretty high once you know Coach and Ozzy don’t win.
    • One World. Despite the winner, Kim, being popular & really skilled, it also introduced Colton Cumbie, one of the most disliked characters in the show's history who dominated the screentime with offensive tendencies until his elimination. After his evacuation, the season became dreadfully boring because of the ineptitude of most of the remaining castaways making Kim's victory too obvious. It doesn't help that future returnees from the season were the aforementioned Colton along with Kat and Monica, both women coming off as being picked for Blood vs. Water merely because of their loved ones.
    • Caramoan has questionable choices for favorites (including a first boot, an annoying Spotlight-Stealing Squad, and a Mood Swinging Tag Along Kid), and poor editing that mainly shows off Jerkasses like Brandon and Shamar while ignoring everyone else. Brandon's violent breakdown broke the fanbase and everything was in favor of the favorites. The post-merge stepped up but near the end, the 'loved ones challenge' became a Diabolus ex Machina that eliminated a (though quite invisible) fan favorite, and the winner being too obvious and divisive. The cherry on top of all this was the fact that the pre-jury boots were not allowed on stage in the reunion show in order to cover up the absence of Brandon, and Jeff consistently claiming that it was a great season despite not many people seeing it from his perspective thanks to said editing.
    • Worlds Apart suffers from a poor boot order that eliminated the more engaging contestants early on, leaving boring and unlikable contestants (we're talking at least three Scrappies and the rest not being engaging enough) behind. Also, the season lacked strategy to the point where the boot order was obvious, and the winner could be seen coming from a mile away. The editing also showed off people's Jerkass moments to an even further extent than Fiji. Plus, the season was a major victim of Hype Backlash with Jeff Probst claiming that it was the best season ever while the majority of the fans didn't see it that way.
    • Game Changers has been accused of this. To start things off, there is even more questionable casting choices than in Caramoan. There is also a bunch of hated twists, the poorly edited double boot episode which became one of the most hated episodes in the show's history, Jeff Varner's infamous comments towards Zeke in the former's boot episode, an incohesive storyline, and a generally disliked boot order with fan favorites like Sandra, Malcolm, Ciera, and Tony all going out in the pre-merge leaving most of the post-merge castaways as Base-Breaking Characters—if not complete Scrappy characters—or Out of Focus. Plus, the winner of that season managed to become one of the least popular winners in the show's history with her win being extremely obvious, which fans didn't appreciate especially as the preceding season tried their best to avert the Captain Obvious Reveal, making fans less forgiving of that trope.
    • Edge of Extinction has the main theme of the season being a Scrappy Mechanic, a lopsided editing that has the last few episodes focus on a polarizing Spotlight-Stealing Squad, and a very controversial winner with Chris coming back to the game with him winning the whole season by spending most of the game with the jurors (in which a lot of them were bitter at the other two finalists) after they were voted out thanks to the aforementioned Scrappy Mechanic which kinda makes 28 days of actual gameplay appear to not really be of any importance in the end.
    • Island of the Idols, while having a decent mechanic of bringing back Boston Rob and Sandra as mentors as well as an enjoyable pre-merge, went downhill after a very messy Me Too episode in the beginnings of the merge. Thanks to Dan's sexual harassment, and not to mention the production crew's poor handling of it, a dark specter was cast over the entire season with a lot of the castaways looking like complete jerks and featuring players that were too gamebot-ish. Even with Dan's ejection by the end of the penultimate episode, the damage was done to redeem this season. The finale wasn't able to salvage it much as all the fan favorites were gone by the Final Three and having a winner that could be seen from a mile away.
    • In general:
      • The constant use of returning castaways. In the eight seasons between Heroes vs. Villains and Blood vs. Water, six of them have used returning castaways to one degree or another, limiting the number of fresh applicants who want to be part of the show.
      • To some fans, every season since Thailand is this as the show is less about actual survival and more about people trying to spam Hidden Immunity Idols to get to the Final 3 (or 2) and lie their way to a million dollars.
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny
    • Some of the earlier seasons, mainly the first 3, can be a little hard to watch nowadays because many people had played the strategy game so well that some of the early players seem like utter fools in comparison. Even predesignated roles - Jerri proudly wears the title of Survivor's original Villain, but seeing her in The Australian Outback in probably 10 years later can make her look like just a rude girl in comparison. (She admits as much in the premiere of Heroes Vs Villains, and she wasn't that villainous thereafter. See also Rescued from the Scrappy Heap where Jerri was applauded; whereas she was booed off the stage previously in the All-Stars reunion).
    • The challenges also fall into this category. They were far less elaborate in the earlier seasons than they were in the seasons within The New '10s, unless they were one of the Final-Exam Boss type challenges.
    • Plays that were at the time novel and brilliant are now seen as commonplace - alliances (first appeared in Borneo), finding idols without clues (Samoa), Splitting votes to flush out the idol aka "Plan Voodoo" (First envisioned in Cook Islands, first implemented in Redemption Island), throwing challenges following a tribal switch (Africa), bait-and-switch voting (Fiji), idoling (Fiji again), and fake idols (Fiji again) are all a part of the game so much that their use in later seasons has a lesser impact.
    • Certain twists. Tribal switches, hidden immunity idols, etc are so commonplace.
    • Some people have said that Borneo was the worst season of Survivor specifically because it was so boring and predictable with the players making no strategy to speak of.
  • Sequelitis: Tends to happen a lot with returning players
    • Many people feel that Coach fell victim to this in South Pacific, losing much of his comedy.
    • Ozzy was seen as a non-factor in game-changers, as opposed to his first 3 seasons.
  • Shocking Elimination: Has its own page.
  • Shocking Swerve: Chris Underwood returning and winning Edge of Extinction is arguably this, as there was hardly any build-up to his return or particular focus on him during the first three episodes or on Extinction.
  • Signature Scene: Sue's Snakes and Rats speech in Borneo is usually seen as this.
  • Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped:
    • Despite how Anvilicious Millennials Vs. Gen-X has been, the portrayal of Hannah's panic attack was conveyed surprisingly well. Hannah has a panic attack while watching her tribe compete in a reward challenge, causing her to shake, feel numb and have trouble breathing. Bret and medical look after her, and everyone is relieved that she's alright. Afterwards, Sunday is seen sympathetically listening to Hannah after the challenge as she explains herself. It's explained in great detail by Hannah how a panic attack works, and how she didn't want to be judged or seen as weak by the others which is why she lies and says she's fine. And it's not mocked by the editing. This is an anvil that NEEDED to be dropped, because even in this day and age some people just don't understand how panic attacks work and it makes people - especially teenager or young adults - who do have them feel like they have to isolate their feelings and say their fine to avoid getting picked on.
    • As awful as Zeke's forced outing was in Game Changers, it also brought up some very important messages about stereotypes and perceptions and how harmful they can be. Zeke didn't say anything about his identity because he didn't want to be seen as the "transgender guy" on Survivor, he wanted to be seen as Zeke the player. He wanted the players and viewers to know him as himself, and not make one thing define his whole character. This is a relevant message, since some people - even avid supporters - will only define someone based on their sexuality or gender identity (or even their race), regardless of their personality. There is more to an LGBT person than just being LGBT, and Zeke said it beautifully.
    • As Anvilicious as some saw the racial discussion between Jamal and Jack in Island of the Idols, it was still a very important discussion to have. While calling Jamal's buff a durag/do-rag may have been harmless, the fact is Jack called the buff of the only black male in their tribe that is the problem. Especially as durag/do-rags are associated with negative stereotypes towards black men. There are just some things you shouldn't say to or about a minority group, even if it's meant to be a joke.
    • Also in Island of the Idols, the merge episode has an absolutely brutal look at sexual harassment and the various reasons why the victim and their supporters, not the perpetrator, tend to get punished. Kellee lamented that it took five women to confirm that Dan's overly-touchy behavior was a genuine problem in the first place and that she's not being oversensitive. Even then, she pointed out that there's a stigma against being the whistleblower, and how sometimes you have to keep your mouth shut to preserve your position. Once the issue did get out in the open, Missy and Elizabeth actively sabotaged the accusations for their own gain and Lauren didn't care because she didn't feel harassed by his actions. Aaron's reaction was to think the charges were made up to attack Dan since he didn't hear about them earlier (though Jamal did call him out on this one). Regardless of any other failures production may have made in handling the situation, the editing unambiguously showed Dan's actions and their affect on the tribe, even airing Visible Boom Mic shots that would otherwise never be used, to hammer home that the issue is absolutely not something that should be dismissed or ignored.
    • The discussion of gender bias that is often found in Survivor. Sarah Lacina, in the finale of Winners at War, discussed her experiences when she first won Game Changers - how she was lambasted and hated for her ruthless and dominating style of gameplay. It had gotten so bad, that she genuinely began to wonder if she was a bad person. But when she played in Winners at War and heard how the jury praised Tony for "running the game", despite the fact it was being run by the two of them in equal partnership, she realized that the backlash she got wasn't about her, but about the gender biases in the Survivor community. How a man could play a dominating game and be praised, but a woman who did the same would be hated. How women are treated with much more scrutiny and limited compared to men. The discussion could have come across as a Straw Feminist rant, but it was in fact very enlightening, as even Jeff Probst comes to realize that he himself had such biases in the game with how often he takes favorites in male players over the female ones - and starts calling Sarah by her surname, Lacina, which he usually does to his favorite male players. It was an important discussion that could have never been spoken about with any subtlety, but it was needed, and allowed Sarah to finally look back on her win in Game Changers and feel proud of how she played, ending the discussion with how she "would not lose to gender bias".
  • Star-Making Role: For Jeff Probst.
  • Stop Having Fun, Guys: Many of the contestants on Survivor take the show far too seriously, often veering into Serious Business.
    • James gave vibes of this in Heroes vs. Villains. He was a lot more aggressive in his gameplay, and all he earned from that was a potential boot before the jury (at least that's what would've happened if his injury didn't keep him from playing).
    • Sometimes even the superfans can be hit with this, feeling that the clever scheming and blindsides are better.
    • This is how the Pagong tribe felt about the Tagi tribe, specifically the alliance of Rich, Rudy, Sue and Kelly, in Borneo. Pagong was more interested in having fun playing the game while Tagi was focused on the competitive aspect. Of course, this being Survivor. Tagi steamrolled over Pagong after the merge and the last remaining Pagong member repeatedly emphasized how miserable the game had become. In other words, the "Stop Having Fun" Guys were able to successfully stop the other players from having fun.
  • Strawman Has a Point: There are a couple nice moves performed by players who may even be idiots at worst, there are several parts where even their haters admit that was actually a good move. Examples include:
    • Russell deducing Immunity Idol locations with only one (or no) clues, and organizing the elimination of Boston Rob.
    • Fairplay getting into the final three with two weaker players.
    • Phillip seeing through Ralph's "lie" about having the hidden Immunity Idol;
    • When NaOnka gets involved in a blindside in Nicaragua, she pulls aside her Sitcom Arch-Nemesis, Fabio, and gets him on board with it for a numbers advantage. In fact, when she even tells Fabio what she's involved in, he agrees that it was a good idea.
    • Abi-Maria acts like she's just taking the money and leaving from the Cambodia auction... however when an advantage is offered, she immediately offers up all her money to get the advantage and try to break their alliance.
    • Jeff's new policy in 2014 that contestants shouldn't use social media to talk about Survivor, given how hungry maniacs that can present good theories by watching the tweets from the contestants.
    • Jason and Scot being mean to Alecia may have crossed the line, however it is worth remembering that Alecia was constantly arguing with them (after the Episode 4 immunity challenge where she argued with Jason and Scot), so their bullying may not have been completely out of line.
    • The specific reason Jerri Manthey was booed off-stage during the All-Stars reunion? She was complaining about how everyone involved had suffered bad feelings and broken friendships just for the audience's entertainment. Yes, she was booed for a very common criticism of how Reality TV exploits its participants, that she experienced first-hand, and after coming off a particularly dark season where things got uncomfortably personal for even many viewers.
  • Super Couple: "Boston Rob" and Amber; from Marquesas and Australian Outback respectively but they courted while playing All-Stars. The fame from this parlayed into two stints on The Amazing Race (one regular, one in their All-Star season) and their own reality show. Their utter domination of All-Stars resulted in future castaways becoming extremely leery of similar hook-ups in later seasons. If it even appears that a young male and a young female are starting to bond, one of the two will almost certainly get voted out at the next opportunity.
  • Surprise Difficulty:
    • A lot of people who really know the game from watching it for years often wind up running into this when they actually play. Mario Lanza and others have pointed out that playing the game is much different than actually watching it on TV. When you watch it on TV, for one hour a week, you see the confessionals, the tribal councils, etc, and are often nice and clean, well-rested, and well-fed while watching it. When you're actually out on the battlefield, you do not see the Tribal Councils, the confessionals, or the moves made by the other side, and are always hungry and sleep-deprived. If you think about it, some plans that involved guessing at what people on the other tribe were thinking may have seen stupid to the viewers because we knew what happened on the other side, (while they didn't).
    • It was discussed at the end of Micronesia, also stating why fans vs favorite seasons don't always work out in favor of the fans. The fans have only known it from online-role-playing games, watching the show, discussing it, etc. The favourites meanwhile know what it's like to actually be in the game when you're hungry and sleep-deprived, and aren't within reach of a nice dinner or a comfortable bed whenever you are hungry or tired. That and the fans were a little too star-struck and were more likely to fall into traps and be easily-manipulated... or start knocking potential allies out trying to impress and find their way into nearly-unbreakable alliances.

    T-W 
  • Tainted by the Preview:
    • South Pacific was hit hard by this. After coming out what is considered to be a very poorly received season, many fans were upset that Jeff Probst tries to recreate that season.
    • Blood vs Water can also be viewed as this due to Redemption Island returning to the season as well as fans fearing the loved ones twist would be a Scrappy Mechanic. However, the season was loved by a lot of people as Redemption Island was Rescued from the Scrappy Heap, and the Blood vs. Water twist was a twist that made strategy much more interesting.
    • Caramoan and Game Changers was also hit hard by this as well thanks to the questionable casting choices those seasons had. Even more so when the spoilers were leaked for the latter's season when many fans were upset that the more "game-changing" castaways went out pre-merge.
    • People were nervous for Millennials vs Gen X season because of the age spilt that reminded people of Nicaragua (in which that season was not well-liked by a lot of people). However, much like Blood vs. Water, the season was praised by a bunch of people for the cast, the editing, and the strategy.
    • Some fans felt concerned over the theme of David vs. Goliath where they felt that production would favor the David tribe simply because of how they are built as "underdogs". Even more so since Lynne Spillman (aka the casting director of Survivor) was fired shortly after the filming of Edge of Extinction causing fans to be concerned that both David vs. Goliath and Edge of Extinction will be bad seasons. However, it should be noted that when David vs. Goliath got done airing, the season itself was critically acclaimed by a lot of people.
    • Once the twist was leaked for Edge of Extinction, people were very upset believing that season would suck for a lot of reasons. First of all, it was a rehash of the Redemption Island season (aka the season that many fans considered to be the worst season ever). Not to mention how people became very upset towards the possibility of somebody was voted out Day One could come back to the game by Day 35. Also, people became very concerned over the jury format and the edit of the season. It's quite noteworthy that the promo at the David vs. Goliath finale mentions very little of how the Edge of Extinction twist would work as they may have feared this reaction once the full details of the twist was out in the public.
      • Sure enough, the twist was revealed, and it wasn't pretty. It basically meant you could essentially win by "Doing Absolutely Nothing" and use the "getting voted out early" strategy to your advantage, which is exactly how Chris Underwood became the Sole Survivor of EoE. It did have some strong points, so it wasn't a total bust like previous Redemption Island seasons not counting Blood Vs Water. Many people expected Gavin or Lauren to win Edge of Extinction, due to the fact Gavin hadn't received a single vote, and Lauren was very savvy in the game, at least until the finale where she fell for an obviously fake idol made by a Creator's Pet Rick Devens, and ended up getting a humiliation conga. Gavin came up three votes short due to a bitter jury, making a lot of people question "What's the point of surviving 38 days when someone can survive 12 days and have some 26 days on Extinction and come back and win the game?"
    • The reaction to the twist of Island of the Idols wasn't exactly pretty either. For one, it featured two winners of the game, one of which, though pretty popular, won twice already, and the other became something of a Creator's Pet and a Memetic Loser, having lost thrice before winning his fourth season. The flames died down when it was revealed they would be "coaching" the new players, but after one season of returning players being a bust with most of the players in question either voted out early in Aubry's case, a Creator's Pet in Joe's case, and the other two being relatively good game players, but screwed over by a sudden flip, this was not the way to win back the crowd. Not to mention that Big Brother did a Coaches twist beforehand with the coaches managing to become actual players in the game (in which causes the Coaches to be immune during the first couple of weeks for unfair reasons). Ultimately, the fears of the Coaches taking over the show were unfounded; and with the actions of the players taking a nasty turn, the Coaches ironically ended up being seen as one of the positives compared to the ugliness back at camp. Some people have even (perhaps jokingly) claimed that Rob and Sandra entering the game would actually be an improvement, because it would be better than one of the Scrappies winning.
  • Take That, Scrappy!:
    • When Colton quit Blood Vs. Water, his tribemates, the internet, and especially Jeff Probst had him for lunch.
    • When Russell was finally eliminated in Redemption Island, many Russell haters relished in the fact that he was finally voted out, and that he cried on the way out. Sandra even threw a party.
    • In a similar vein to Colton, watching Jeff tear into Na Onka and Purple Kelly after they quit Nicaragua is also satisfying.
      Jeff: You wanna go? Go.
    • After Dan claims to state his sexism was edited on to the show and was not really him, Jeff Probst provided raw footage at the Worlds Apart reunion proving that it was not edited on the show.
    • Andrea's voting confessional towards Zeke in the merge episode of Game Changers could count as one.
      Andrea: Terrible game move. You suck at this game. I hope to see you never.
    • Many fans felt disappointed in Laurel's game due to her taking two huge threats to the end of Ghost Island with her. The jury must have felt the same way given she has received zero votes at the end.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!
    • If you watch all of the seasons back to back, there is an unmistakable shift in tone starting with Vanuatu, emphasizing strategy and shocking twists over everything else. Whether or not this "sucks" is up to you.
    • The Final Three format gets hit with this a lot. Probst actually says he prefers the final three because people would bring someone to the finals for perverse incentives, whereas others argue that this is part of the game, Others also point out that it's still in between two people in the end, since there were only three seasons that all three members in the final three received at least one vote. It was likely inspired by Exile Islands; where people were planning on taking Courtney to the finals simply because everyone hated her, and arguably when Terry, who had one of the most memorable immunity runs since Colby's, was kicked at the Final 3.
    • The iconic Ancient Voices theme that used to play at the end of every episode has been replaced by a rather more generic and bland score.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Generally, whenever a contestant is put through a Shocking Elimination or whenever legitimately interesting or badass-looking contestants are early-mid game boots. Especially early-mid game because we barely get to know them. See also I Coulda Been a Contender!. A couple big examples include:
    • Andrew Savage in Pearl Islands. Inverted with Burton and Lil, who many feel became more interesting after returning as an outcast.
    • Dolly and John P. in Vanuatu.
    • Steve "Chicken" Morris and Dave in China.
    • Jacquie in Gabon. At the time, it looked like there was a near-unbreakable alliance with Charlie, Marcus, and Corinne. However; she wound up screwed by the tribe swap.
    • Kelly B, Yve, Tyrone, and Jill from Nicaragua. It's pretty obvious that all four are physically capable (Jill even wins the first individual immunity of the game); but they wind up evicted in a very awkward part of the game: Right before the merge. Probst doesn't even acknowledge them that much (Kelly excluded); and there have even been speculations that Jill didn't even attend the reunion.
    • Kristina Kell and a lot of the Zapatera on Redemption Island. Other than Rob and Phillip, most of the Ometepe players were just made into dull Living Props, whereas on the Zapatera side, we have some legitimately interesting people and a couple players who the host says is badass, as well as one of the most cunning players in the series.
    • Sugar, Randy, Tom, and Stephenie in Heroes vs. Villains.
    • Richard, Rudy, Tina, Jenna, Jerri, and Sue in All-Stars.
    • Jonathan Penner in Fans vs. Favorites. In Cook Islands, he was a bit of an annoyance. But in Fans vs. Favorites, he starts to play his own game more, do better in challenges and has a better social game, even though Jeff's dislike of him is still pretty obvious. He is however evacuated from the game early. And then we get to the Philippines season.
    • Russell Swan had what was one of the most memorable heartwarming moments in the series in Samoa. Sadly he doesn't even make it mid-way. And again, there's Philippines which is a whole other story.
    • Wanda and Jonathan of Palau were evicted in episode one. We really didn't get to know them other than Wanda singing.
    • Bobby Mason from the Panama season, if you believe his theory that certain contestants who are voted out early are either ignored or edited negatively in order not to upset viewers who would otherwise be outraged at a "good" contestant leaving early.
    • Rick from South Pacific, oh so much. Before appearing on the show, he had applied 14 times, and his confessionals posted online showed what an interesting character he was. However, he got almost no screen time, and was completely ignored during the reunion show despite placing 5th.
    • Kourtney in One World was shown early on as being the Only Sane Woman of the Salani tribe, only to be medevaced on day three.
    • A lot of the Gota tribe on Caramoan had some serious potential, such as Matt the BMXer, Julia (who is not nearly as vanilla in real life), Allie (an actual superfan), and Laura, who gained a massive fanbase. However, none of them make the merge and the pre-merge is sucked up by Jerkass Shamar.
    • Among the snubbed returnees for Cambodia, T-Bird from Africa and Shane from Panama.
    • Kelly Wiglesworth in Cambodia. Despite being arguably the most iconic player in the cast (the runner up from the inaugural season), she was invisible for most of the season, barely factoring into strategy discussions, and having almost no confessionals. By the time her boot episode rolls around, she is played up as this huge social threat that has to go, despite not showing why she was such a huge threat.
    • Caleb Reynolds in Kaoh Rong. He seemed to have turned a new leaf since his stint on Big Brother 16 where he was infamous for a one-sided crush on fellow contestant Amber. In this he is a genuinely nice guy now forming fast friendships with everyone on his tribe with the exception of Nick. Having a fiancée obviously mellowed him out along with the character development he got in BB16. Before we get to see this new significantly kinder and more mature Caleb, he is pulled from the game in one of the most heartbreaking medical evacuations ever.
    • Mari from Survivor: Millennials vs Gen X can be seen as this as she was shown to be being very strategic for the two episodes she was shown. Plus, since she is a professional gamer, she will probably be very competitive out there.
    • A lot of fans wanted David or Jay to return as a male castaway from Millennials vs Gen X on Game Changers as many fans agree that the former ended up playing the best game in that season and the latter would have an interesting relationship with Michaela given how upset she was when he blindsided her. Instead, we got Zeke, who ended up having less warm reception than those two.
    • Everybody in Ghost Island who is not Domenick, Wendell, Laurel, Donathan, Kellyn, or Michael can be considered this. Many of the pre-merge contestants such as Brendan, Stephanie, and James could have been excellent strategists down the road while people like Jacob or Bradley could be very interesting characters (though the latter could be more on the Love to Hate category). As for the contestants who actually made it to the merge, many of them were Out of Focus despite being shown to be interesting characters in their Ponderosa videos. In fact, many contestants on that season stated in post-game interviews that they believe that Sebastion would win this game which can come across as an Informed Attribute thanks to his Out of Focus edit. Even Chris who has plenty of screen time for being the merge boot can be considered this for reasons listed below.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • One World was obviously set up to get the two tribes mingling and think of themselves more as one group than two. Unfortunately, an act of sabotage by the men right at the beginning, before they knew they'd be sharing a camp, and because the tribes themselves were divided by genders, still cemented the usual "us vs. them" mentality. (Whose fault it was really doesn't matter today.)
    • Redemption Island is often seen as this simply because it turned out to mostly be a chance to focus both seasons' footage almost exclusively on the Creator's Pet that returned.
    • Cook Islands and Panama, which started with a four tribe game, only to be bumped down to two within the first couple episodes.
    • The Recon Twist in Millennials Vs. Gen-X. CBS had hyped it up as a game-changing twist, leading to theories that there was either going to be a swap, or that the people chosen were going to make their own third tribe of evenly numbered millennials and gen-x's, which would have led to an interesting dynamic of how this third tribe would co-exist with being two generations with different ideals and beliefs. But instead, all we got was a picnic with four millennials and four gen-x's who didn't do too much but talk.
    • The Legacy Advantage has been accused of this. While many fans can enjoy the concept of it on paper, many fans would have preferred if the legacy advantage was known to the other players in Millennials Vs. Gen-X and Game Changers making it more for interesting drama. Instead, only the holders of that legacy advantage knew about that twist. However, as noted above in the Author's Saving Throw section, Ghost Island fixes this a little.
    • The other options in the tackle box on the Exile Island ship that Debbie got to choose from when she picked the extra vote. They were a fake idol kit and an advantage for her tribe at her next immunity challenge. By principle, she could only choose one. The fake idol kit was especially interesting because it took away the difficulty of passing off a phony idol in a creative way.
    • As literally as you can get with this trope, the extra vote Lauren obtained in Heroes Vs. Healers Vs. Hustlers was wasted on her because she neglected to bring it with her to Tribal Council and told people about it. Not only that, she had a two-piece idol that she split with Mike... who then tossed his half into the fire. Lauren blew two advantages in one night and got eliminated by the use of an idol by Ben.
    • Subverted with the Super Idol of Heroes Vs. Healers Vs. Hustlers. Chrissy decides to let it die, but eventually tries to use it as a convincing fake Hidden Immunity Idol with normal effects by pairing it with instructions Ryan kept from an idol he played earlier in the game. While the effect of the idol was gone, it still managed to be useful... at least until Ben saw right through the ruse, having already found the real deal again.
    • Many fans wished that the rivalry between Chris and Domenick in Ghost Island would have lasted a little longer therefore preventing what many fans believed a boring post-merge afterwards.
    • Winners At War can be considered this as a whole season despite its intense finale. They left out some fan favorite winners like Todd Herzog, Mike Holloway, and Tina Wesson resulting in not as an exciting cast as it could've been. The cast they did decide on were very hit or miss where some Took a Level in Badass while other underwent Badass Decay. Rather than bringing back old time classic challenges that were integral in contestants' victories (like the Tile Flip challenge that won Danni Boatwright Guatemala) they reused man Once a Season challenges. They didn't really emphasize the winners theme as much as they emphasized the fire token which was best seen in the immunity necklace and immunity idol which were decorated with fire tokens rather than have a winner theme such as a medal for the immunity necklace and a trophy for the immunity idol. As for the fire tokens, they gave distinct advantages to people voted out early like how Natalie Anderson got 3 advantages in the final Edge of Extinction challenge. Additionally several of the better advantages like the Idol Nullifier went unused, while the ones that were used were problematic such as the 50:50 coin note  and the Extortion advantage note 
  • Tough Act to Follow: Some seasons such as:
    • Africa to The Australian Outback and Borneo, as the first seasons were insanely popular and filled with memorable characters. Unfortunately having a predictable boot order didn't help it's case, nor did several sketchy momentsnote . Thankfully the Finale and subsequent winner were extremely popular, and Ethan in particular is known to this day as one of the only outright heroes to winnote .
    • Thailand to Marquesas thanks to the latter revolutionizing Survivor strategy and outright showing people a new way to play... only to be followed by a season with an irritatingly predictable boot order. Not to mention that the one major complaint of Marquesas (the hero loses crushingly) was taken to extreme levels in Thailand as the sociopathic puppy shooter wins.
    • In a Bizarre twist, All-Stars to Pearl Islands, as the latter is known as one of the best seasons of the franchise. All-Stars was expected to be too, but... wasn't, despite featuring the most popular castaway from that season.
    • Guatemala is hit with this 'hard. The previous season introduced one of the biggest heroes of the franchise, and she returns... except with all of her negative qualities showcased to justify her losing 6-1 to a character who's entire strategy was to not give the cameras any indication of her strategy (making her rather bland). On top of that, the cast is a bit gamebot-ey, with only a select few characters being particularly popular.
    • Fiji to Cook Island, shunted off due to the jerkassness of most of the contestants and the lopsided twist, though it is the season that introduces us new strategic tricks that would be a staple in many seasons to come.
    • Nicaragua to HVV, despite having a rather crazy cast ala Gabon, was plagued with horrible strategy, two quitters, and an old vs young twist that slanted towards the young-uns winning. That said, the winner is considered one of the best of the franchise, and some find it a decently comedic season. The real issue is that Heroes vs Villains is a legitimate contender for best season of the franchise.
      • Interestingly Redemption Island has a hard time following both of these, as Nicaragua is, despite it's flaws, a pretty well liked season to most people. Redemption Island is often considered one of the worst, and the final 3 is considered one of the worst in the show's history (Wheras last season's F3 had two extremely popular players, and a goat that was at least entertainingly bad/mocked).
    • One World to South Pacific, at least to casual viewers, thanks to being extremely boring, as opposed to South Pacific which at least had memorable characters and storylines.
    • San Juan Del Sur to Cagayan, was shunted off due to the unrootable cast and the boring pre-merge, though it had some bright spots with it's stepped up editing, new type of social strategy play (with contestants using rewards as leverage) and an unpredictable post-merge where viewers found it difficult to confidently say who got the win in the bag.
    • Edge of Extinction to David vs. Goliath, was shunted off due to the editing, the Scrappy Mechanic, and the controversial winner, particularly as David vs Goliath was considered one of the best recent seasons.
  • Uncanny Valley:
    • In the Heroes vs. Villains reunion show, CBS made a "prototype" survivor by photoshopping together parts of all 19 winners at that point. The result was rather hideous...
    • Jane's eyes seemed to bug out a lot when they told her she was being voted out in Nicaragua.
  • Unexpected Character: Quite a few seasons with some returning players have a few of these.
    • Amber Brkich was the least known castaway in All-Stars which makes ironic that she won that season. Her appearance in Winners At War was also unexpected given how very few people didn't expect that her and Boston Rob would play on the same season.
    • Very few people expected Francesca Hogi (aka the first boot of her first season) to be in Caramoan.
    • It can be mildly surprising to see Kelley Wentworth on the ballot for Cambodia as she had little screen time, and was eliminated rather early in a pre-merge that is considered lackluster.
    • Jeff Varner and Kimmi Kappenberg being on Cambodia thanks to them being pre-jury contestants on a season that happened over a decade ago.
    • Sierra Dawn Thomas on Game Changers due to her being very Out of Focus on her first season, which was often considered Seasonal Rot by many fans.
    • Bi Nguyen being on the David tribe during David vs. Goliath as you wouldn't expect an MMA fighter to be on the David tribe, but Bi faced a lot of hardship growing up in rural Vietnam, which puts her here.
  • Unfortunate Implications: For Cook Islands, the tribes were separated by race. Although this meant that there much more racial diversity in a show that had previously been very monochrome, and the tribes were mixed up after only two episodes, many viewers couldn't help but feel offended by the stunt, finding it reminiscent of Jim Crow-era segregation.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Some find bitter jurors to be entirely justified, since Survivor is just as much a game of social politics as it is a strategic one. Jurors aren't bitter until someone or something makes them that way. Russell Hantz and his supporters disagree.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: We're supposed to feel bad Abi-Maria was made an outcast within her own tribe in Cambodia, yet she was isolated because of the abrasive attitude that made her a goat in "Philippines" so she really brought it on herself
  • Unpopular Popular Character
    • Almost everyone from Thailand and All-Stars says they can't stand Shii Ann Huang. She is one of the most well known contestants from Thailand, and in All-Stars is pretty much the only one pretty much all the viewers like.
    • Christy Smith from Amazon was not well liked by the other contestants due to her Brutal Honesty and overall confrontational personality. She is one of the biggest fan requests to return for another season.
    • Rupert Boneham was evidently not very well liked by his tribemates (sans Christa and Sandra), but is one of the most popular characters of the franchise, particularly in Pearl Islands.
    • Judd Sergeant from Guatemala was hated by the other contestants (and Jeff Probst) for his Jerkass behavior, No Indoor Voice, and being an giant bully. The fans love him for those exact same reasons.
    • Although she is divisive in this regard, many fans find Lisi Linares from Fiji far too ridiculous and over the top to hate.
    • Jean-Robert Bellande from China was a complete sleazebag, and pretty much every contestant insulted him at some point. The fans love him.
    • From Tocantins, we have Sierra Reed and Erinn Lobdell. Both were intensely disliked by their tribe, and would have likely been voted out early had it not been for their tribe's winning streak. Sierra gets love on the grounds of being The Woobie, and Erinn for being a Deadpan Snarker.
    • From Worlds Apart, almost everyone in the merged tribe despises Shirin Oskooi. For the fans, however, she is one of the most popular characters of the season, with only Jenn and Joe rivaling her, and she is well-liked in virtually every circle of Survivor fandom.
    • Natalie Cole from David vs. Goliath has rubbed people the wrong way on the island. However, fans believed that she is very good television making her a fan favorite.
    • Noura Salman and Karishma Patel from Island of the Idols are probably the least popular among their fellow tribe mates. Noura for being unpredictable and obnoxious, and Karishma for being The Load and emotionally flip-flopping. However, both women are relatively popular outside the show, Noura for her humorous moments and being very proactive and pro-woman, and Karishma for the exploration of her Indian-American heritage and genuinely sympathetic backstory. And then both of them had their popularity rise after the incident with Dan, where both women showed a willingness to vote him out and didn't approve of his behavior; and Karishma followed up by standing up to Missee bullying her.
  • The Un-Twist: Several seasons with allegedly "unexpected winners" can be this to some people.
    • Borneo compared to viewers at the time, who weren't realizing that Kelley's backstabbing and Richard's work ethic and fishing made him a more likable person (Worth noting is that Richard almost won 7-2 before Sue's hateful speech flipped some jurors).
    • The Australian Outback. Well yeah, the Jury is going to vote for the person presenting themselves as an non-strategic entity over the alpha male after what happened in Borneo.
    • Samoa has an infamous one. Russell Hantz received a vast majority of the screentime and an edit that made it look like he was the only strategic force on his tribe. Anyone looking at the jurors however, sees a group of people that don't like Russell, and like Natalie. Not to mention Russell being a gigantic Jerkass.
    • Heroes vs Villains. Sandra is the only one the Heroes even tolerate. Of course she's going to win, not Russell or Parvati.
    • People examining the edit of Kaoh Rong found that Michelle was the most likely winner due to getting extra confessionals close to the finale that really weren't as pertinent as others'.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • Rudy's homophobia was played for humor in Borneo and he was the most popular contestant in the Final Four, but today his complaining about queers would be hugely controversial and turn the audience against him. (Case in point: Varner's actions in Game Changers were treated as a Moral Event Horizon by all involved; Varner included.) Same goes for other homophobic jokes and comments in the early seasons. It helps that in case of Rudy, he had an Odd Friendship going with Richard Hatch, an openly gay man, so for all his complaints, it was softened by his actions and interactions with Rich.
    • Boston Rob outing John Carroll in Survivor: The Marquesas wasn't made a big deal back then, despite the fact John hadn't yet outed himself to his friends and family, and it having negative consequences on his life at some of his family didn't accept his sexuality. Had he done it in this day and age, he would have been reviled the same way Varner was for his outing of Zeke.
    • When Borneo was being aired for the first time, Pagong were portrayed as the way how to even play the whole thing, with their laid-back attitude and actively getting rid of anyone who wants to treat the show or the competition serious, like B.B. or Joel. Then came the finale of Borneo. And all the seasons that followed. Nowdays they are widely considered Too Dumb to Live, while Tagi's ruthless efficiency and social politics became the way how to even stay around for more than two episodes.
  • Vindicated by History: Has its own page
  • Wangst: Too many examples to list, but applies to several characters each season.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Symbolic?: In Amazon, Joanna decided she didn't like the immunity idol because of biblical laws against idolatry.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Badass?
    • Any winner who most fans deemed as "undeserving" solely for not being both physically and/or strategically dominating and aggressive compared to their runners-up. Notable cases are Tina Wesson from Australia, Amber Brkich from All-Stars, Natalie White from Samoa, and Sophie Clarke from South Pacific. Sophie is an interesting case of this because she was both a strategic and a physically capable player. She was just more quiet about it.
    • As listed above, Becky Lee in Cook Islands was ignored because of her opponents in the final three are the season's resident Guile and Action heroes. Needing two hours and a set of matches to win the fire-making tiebreaker in the final four TC probably didn't do her any favors, either.
    • This is the main reason why Game Changers had a lot of questionable casting choices. With people believing that Game Changers are supposed to have twenty former castaways who actually made big moves and changed the game, many people ended up disliking the questionable casting choices believing they did not fit the theme of the season whatsoever. If that season were to have a different theme, people may be less vocal about the questionable casting choices.
  • WTH, Casting Agency?:
    • There are always several questionable casting choices that show up in All-Star seasons, such as Shii-Ann Huang, Jenna Lewis, Rob Mariano and Amber Bkirch (All-Stars); Amanda Kimmell and Parvati Shallow (Fans vs. Favorites), Amanda Kimmell, Candice Woodcock, and Danielle DiLorenzo (Heroes vs. Villains), Francesca Hogi and John Cochran (Caramoan), Monica Culpepper, Colton Cumbie, Candice Cody, and Rupert Boneham (Blood vs Water), Ben Driebergen (Winners At War). Keep in mind, though, the winner of those seasons almost always comes from the more WTF casting choices.
      • It's also worth mentioning that some were a little more forgiving in Blood vs. Water due to its twist of having the contestants play with their loved ones, which limits the availability of some with no apparent partner who is physically capable of playing.
    • Game Changers has a bunch of them as there are some people who didn't really change the game such as Caleb Reynolds, Ozzy Lusth, Tai Trang, Sierra Dawn Thomas, Troyzan Robertson, Sarah Lacina, Debbie Wanner, and Hali Ford. While some people feel like some of those people should of returned to the game, they shouldn't been brought back for that particular season. In addition, Brad Culpepper was already a questionable casting choice for the potential returnees for Cambodia and there was very little fan support for him to be casted that season. Not to mention how Zeke ended up receiving Scrappy status after he mocked David with his anxiety issues.
    • There also some of the choices for potential returnees for Cambodia such as Natalie Tenerelli, Brad Culpepper, Woo, Kelley along with Carolyn & Mike who was still competing by The Reveal of choosing the season 31 cast and could be rendered ineligible by winning Worlds Apart, which did happen to Mike.
    • Many fans were also skeptical on casting previous winners in Returning Player seasons because they already won the title and the million bucks.
    • Outside of returnees, the casting department has also gotten a poor reputation for promoting a series of arrogant, deluded, and entitled players (Coach, Russell, NaOnka, Phillip, Colton, Dan, Will, Rodney) in order to incite conflict with their tribemates.
      • The most agreed upon example of this is re-casting Brandon Hantz in Caramoan. The producers more than likely knew he was unstable prior into joining the show, and many of the fanbase agree that he was probably cast in order to get the huge meltdown they got in episode 5 and were extremely upset with the show for doing so. In the same season, re-casting Phillip Sheppard was looked down upon by many.
      • In Blood vs Water, Colton was brought back despite not only being arrogant, but decidedly racist and elitist, and... quit on Day 7. On top of that, Probst claims that he faked his appendicitis on his One World trip, which really makes one question why they would cast him, considering Jeff has made a big stink of not inviting back anything that even remotely looks like a quitter.
      • Casting people like Rodney, Dan, and Will (Worlds Apart) as well as Jason, and Scot (Kaoh Rong) were considered questionable since they went on to bully a female contestant on the show with some of those female characters being Woobie characters and people like Rodney, Dan, and Will were accused of being sexist for their bullying. It does not help much they were cast within the same year.
    • Completely ignoring the Guatemala contestants for reunion seasons. At least until Winners At War.
    • Downplayed with Dawn Meehan in Caramoan. While a lot of fans believe she may be a good casting choice on her own, some fans felt as if Holly Hoffman was a better representative for Dawn's arc (aka an older female who wanted to quit early on but didn't and they went on to make a comeback in the game).
    • Casting non-winners for a third season has gotten this reputation as the contestants in question have a tendency to either be an odd casting choice that most feel don't deserve to be cast again Examples  tarnish their reputation Examples  or worse note . Additionally, no third-time player has made it past the final 7, let alone come anywhere near winning on their third try (Jerri and Colby being the sole exceptions), making third time castings feel pointless to some. (Malcolm Freberg, Jonathan Penner, and Jerri Manathey are the only three to completely escape this stigma thus far).
      • Casting anyone to play for a fourth time can be this even moreso, as some people believe that coming back for a third time should be the limit. It does not help much that every single male person (Sans Tyson) who came back into the game for a fourth time so far has either been a Creator's Pet of sorts (Rob, Rupert) or completely irrelevant for their fourth season (Ozzy, Rupert again).
    • Casting Russell Hantz and Malcolm on back-to-back seasons received some criticism since their seasons were filmed back-to-back with nobody having the chance to see their gameplay.
    • Having Ozzy and Coach being cast as the two returning characters on South Pacific has gotten some flak because of how they have very little in common, and they didn't even play on the same seasons together. (This was apparently a last minute decision. The original person set to go up against Coach would arguably have been worse received)
    • Not including Richard Hatch and Tina Wesson in Winners At War despite them being the original two winners as well as having their seasons be the most watched seasons throughout history. However, some fans speculate the incident between Sue Hawk and Richard in All-Stars may have played a role in the former's non-participation, especially with CBS having to face its own Me Too controversies and extra-expecially considering that Survivor itself had its own sexual harassment incident in the immediately preceding season, Island of the Idols.
  • Win Back the Crowd:
    • The Amazon, which ended a three-season trend of increasingly unpopular seasons with its Lighter and Softer tone, younger and funnier cast and innovative gameplay.
    • Philippines brought new life to the series after a streak of poor seasons with it's entertaining gameplay, exciting cast, and one of the most popular underdog winners.
    • Cagayan due to its all new cast, drama, as well as the fact that the editing is giving everyone a good amount of screentime, making it difficult to predict the winner. Things get better with the long-awaited return of the final two.
    • The pre-merge of San Juan del Sur is considered boring and bland by many fans, yet many agree that the season picked up after the merge, getting better as it approached the end, thanks in part to the varied blindsides, an overall likable cast, and balanced editing where the entire Final 6 seemed to possibly have a shot at winning.
    • Heroes Vs. Healers Vs. Hustlers has managed to become this for Big Brother fans in which both of those shows having Friendly Fandoms together as that season of Survivor was immediately following what many are regarding as the worst season of Big Brother, a relative of Survivor, in which nearly all the cast were numbskulls blindly following Paul Abrahamian and nearly everyone was a disgusting Spoiled Brat who crooned mean-spirited remarks all season long and were high on themselves, and Paul even helped to bring out the bad in everybody and made viewers of these elimination-style competitions VERY dour and almost the entire cast hated and scorned by even past players of the show. This season of Survivor has brought together a group of hardworking and disciplined people who are all savvy and get out the people who cause trouble and are very much in tune with the game. Also, throwing challenges in Survivor is seen as incredibly dishonorable and basically an automatic doom-bringer for the people who do so (because in Survivor, you HAVE to pull your weight to move forward or you WILL go down hard), while Paul basically made everyone do that on cue because eliminations are not concrete in Big Brother like they are Survivor. While the infamous final four twist of Heroes Vs. Healers Vs. Hustlers ended up turning that season into having a Broken Base, many people admit that it is way better than Big Brother 19.
    • David vs. Goliath has received this status in many ways.
      • The first way is that very few of the contestants are Out of Focus. While there are episodes where somebody may not receive a confessional, they have stated a line or two to make up for it.
      • The second way is that very few people don't exactly stick to original tribal lines after the swap (in which was a major complaint in Ghost Island). For example, episode 4 had Alec turning on Natalia, episode 5 had Mike voting out Natalie, and episode 6 had Nick turning on Lyrsa. Come to the merge, people who were pushing to pagong the other tribe such as John, Dan, and Carl all got blindsided; causing many of the players to go into more a fluid game.
      • The third way is that everybody is here to play the game. Unlike the previous season where many contestants especially Laurel got criticized for not doing anything and letting the two biggest threats in the game go to the end, everybody has shown to be willing to take out the big threats. This is seen with Christian (aka the biggest threat) receiving the most amount of votes throughout the season by having 18 votes casted against him throughout the season until he was finally voted out.
  • The Woobie: Has its own page.

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