Survivor: Borneo

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Survivor: Borneo

Winner Richard Hatch
Presented by Jeff Probst
No. of episodes 13
No. of days 39
No. of survivors 16
Production
Location(s) Pulau Tiga, Sabah, Borneo, Malaysia
Filming dates March 13, 2000 (2000-03-13)
– April 20, 2000 (2000-04-20)
Broadcast
Original run May 31, 2000 (2000-05-31) – August 23, 2000 (2000-08-23)
Chronology
Followed by Survivor: The Australian Outback

Survivor: Borneo is the first season of the American CBS competitive reality television series Survivor. It was originally broadcast under the name Survivor but its official title was changed to Survivor: Pulau Tiga to distinguish it from subsequent installments of the series, and then changed again to Survivor: Borneo to avoid confusion with Survivor: Palau. The show filmed from March 13, 2000 through April 20, 2000 and premiered on May 31, 2000. Hosted by Jeff Probst, it consisted of 39 days of gameplay with 16 competitors. It was set in the South China Sea on the remote Malaysian island of Pulau Tiga in the state of Sabah, about 6 miles (9.7 km) off the north coast of Borneo, Malaysia.[1]

The sixteen contestants were initially separated into two tribes, named Tagi and Pagong, which represented the names of their beaches.[1] When ten players remained, the contestants merged into one tribe, named Rattana. While Tagi and Pagong's names and makeups were picked by the producers, Rattana was named by contestants Sean Kenniff and Jenna Lewis, because of the large amount of Rattan wood on the island. After 39 days of competition, corporate trainer Richard Hatch was named the Sole Survivor, defeating whitewater rafting guide Kelly Wiglesworth in a 4–3 jury vote.

On August 23, 2000, the Survivor: Borneo finale received the highest ratings of any Survivor episode to date with an average of 51.7 million viewers. Nielsen themselves reported that 125 million people watched at least some part of the finale.[2] The season was released on DVD on May 11, 2004.[3] In 2006, it was revealed that Hatch failed to declare his winnings, among other earnings, in his tax return and was sentenced to 51 months imprisonment.[4]

Contestants[edit]

There were sixteen contestants overall, divided into two tribes, Pagong and Tagi. After six contestants were eliminated, the tribes were combined, or merged, to form one tribe, Rattana. Seven contestants made up the jury, who ultimately decided who would win the game, and the $1 million grand prize.

Richard Hatch, Jenna Lewis, Rudy Boesch, Susan Hawk and Colleen Haskell were invited to participate again in the eighth season of Survivor, Survivor: All-Stars. Haskell was the only one to turn down the opportunity,[5] while Hatch, Lewis, Boesch and Hawk placed 14th, 3rd, 17th and 13th respectively. Gervase Peterson returned for Survivor: Blood vs. Water alongside his niece, Marissa, where he placed 3rd.[6]

Jenna Lewis came in eighth place and was the second jury member.
Rudy Boesch came in third place and was the seventh jury member
List of Survivor: Borneo contestants
Contestant Original tribe Merged tribe Finish Total votes
Christopher, SonjaSonja Christopher
63, Walnut Creek, California
Tagi 20 1st voted out
Day 3
4
Andersen, B.B.B.B. Andersen
64, Mission Hills, Kansas
Pagong 20 2nd voted out
Day 6
6
Stillman, StaceyStacey Stillman
27, San Francisco, California
Tagi 20 3rd voted out
Day 9
6
Gray, RamonaRamona Gray
29, Edison, New Jersey
Pagong 20 4th voted out
Day 12
6
Been, DirkDirk Been
23, Spring Green, Wisconsin
Tagi 20 5th voted out
Day 15
4
Klug, JoelJoel Klug
27, Sherwood, Arkansas
Pagong 20 6th voted out
Day 18
4
Cordy, GretchenGretchen Cordy
38, Clarksville, Tennessee
Pagong Rattana 7th voted out
Day 21
4
Buis, GregGreg Buis
24, Gold Hill, Colorado
Pagong 8th voted out
1st jury member
Day 24
6
Lewis, JennaJenna Lewis
22, Franklin, New Hampshire
Pagong 9th voted out
2nd jury member
Day 27
11
Peterson, GervaseGervase Peterson
30, Willingboro, New Jersey
Pagong 10th voted out
3rd jury member
Day 30
6
Haskell, ColleenColleen Haskell
23, Miami Beach, Florida
Pagong 11th voted out
4th jury member
Day 33
7
Kenniff, SeanSean Kenniff
30, Brooklyn, New York
Tagi 12th voted out
5th jury member
Day 36
9
Hawk, SusanSusan Hawk
38, Palmyra, Wisconsin
Tagi 13th voted out
6th jury member
Day 37
5
Boesch, RudyRudy Boesch
72, Virginia Beach, Virginia
Tagi 14th voted out
7th jury member
Day 38
8
Wiglesworth, KellyKelly Wiglesworth
22, Las Vegas, Nevada
Tagi Runner-up 0
Hatch, RichardRichard Hatch
39, Middletown, Rhode Island
Tagi Sole Survivor 6
The total votes is the number of votes a castaway has received during Tribal Councils where the castaway is eligible to be voted out of the game. It does not include the votes received during the final Tribal Council.

Season summary[edit]

The sixteen contestants were divided into two tribes of eight: Tagi and Pagong. Both tribes fared equally in challenges, but differed in organizational structure. Pagong was dominated by the younger, more carefree members, whereas four contestants on Tagi formed an alliance, choosing to vote as a block to ensure their safety. When ten players remained—five from each tribe—the tribes merged into one, named Rattana. The alliance strategy proved to be successful, and the four took advantage of the other contestants' lack of voting strategy to gain dominance. There was dissension in the alliance as Kelly was deemed untrustworthy, however she won four consecutive immunity challenges and was ineligible for elimination.

When only the four alliance members remained, they were forced to turn on each other. The vote initially ended in a draw; close allies Richard and Rudy voted for Susan, and Susan and Kelly voted for Richard. On the revote, Kelly decided to switch her vote and Susan was eliminated. After winning the final immunity challenge, Kelly decided to eliminate Rudy because she believed she had a better chance against Richard. At the final Tribal Council, Susan lambasted Kelly for switching her vote and proclaimed her support for Richard. Richard's strategic prowess and leadership was valued over Kelly's impressive challenge performance, and the jury awarded him the title of Sole Survivor in a vote of 4-3.

Challenge winners and eliminations by episode
Episode title Original air date Challenge winner(s) Eliminated Finish
Reward Immunity
"The Marooning" May 31, 2000 Pagong1 Sonja 1st voted out
Day 3
"The Generation Gap" June 7, 2000 Pagong2 Tagi B.B. 2nd voted out
Day 6
"Quest for Food" June 14, 2000 Tagi Pagong Stacey 3rd voted out
Day 9
"Too Little, Too Late?" June 21, 2000 Tagi Tagi Ramona 4th voted out
Day 12
"Pulling Your Own Weight" June 28, 2000 Pagong Pagong Dirk 5th voted out
Day 15
"Udder Revenge" July 5, 2000 Pagong Tagi Joel 6th voted out
Day 18
"The Merger" July 12, 2000 None3 Greg Gretchen 7th voted out
Day 21
"Thy Name Is Duplicity" July 19, 2000 Greg Gervase Greg 8th voted out
1st jury member
Day 24
"Old and New Bonds" July 26, 2000 Colleen, [Jenna] Rudy Jenna 9th voted out
2nd jury member
Day 27
"Crack In the Alliance" August 2, 2000 Gervase Richard Gervase 10th voted out
3rd jury member
Day 30
"Long Hard Days" August 9, 2000 Sean, [Richard] Kelly Colleen 11th voted out
4th jury member
Day 33
"Death of an Alliance" August 16, 2000 Kelly Kelly Sean 12th voted out
5th jury member
Day 36
"Season Finale" August 23, 2000 None Kelly Susan 13th voted out
6th jury member
Day 37
Kelly Rudy 14th voted out
7th jury member
Day 38
Jury vote
Kelly Runner-up
Richard Sole Survivor
In the case of multiple tribes or castaways who win reward or immunity, they are listed in order of finish, or alphabetically where it was a team effort; where one castaway won and invited others, the invitees are in brackets.

^1 The first challenge was a combined reward/immunity challenge. The winning team received immunity and waterproof matches.
^2 Sometime between day four and six, a reward challenge took place that was not aired. The challenge involved holding weight on poles. Richard held the weight for Tagi, as Joel for Pagong. The reward was a map to a closer water hole.
^3 There was no reward challenge due to the tribal merge.

Episodes[edit]

Episode
#
Title CBS recap Original air date U.S. viewers
(million)[7]
Rating/Share
18-49
1 "The Marooning" Recap May 31, 2000 15.51 6.1/20

The two tribes paddle their way into the respective beaches on a raft with meager supplies. Upon arrival, the "Pagong" tribe celebrates the beginning of this journey while the "Tagi" tribe gets right to work with Rudy taking command, aggravating some of his tribe members. Richard calls for order and structure, to which Sue agrees. Ultimately, they pull together to assemble a functional camp. At Pagong, B.B. steps into the leadership role. He and Ramona find the tribe's watering hole, and jokingly agree to hide it from the group. The next morning, Tagi seems to be in good spirits as Sonja plays her ukelele, though Rudy realizes he may need to adapt to the personalities of his younger tribe-mates. B.B.'s aggressive work ethic grates on Pagong and his tribe's laziness begins to frustrate him.

  • Reward/Immunity challenge: The tribes are tasked with guiding a lit raft through shallow water. Once they reach shore, the competitors must carry the raft above land to the finish line. Along the way are a number of torches that must be lit with the raft's fire, culminating in a final fire bowl in front of a massive bamboo statute that must be set ablaze. The first tribe to light their final bowl wins immunity and a reward of waterproof matches.
At the first immunity challenge, Tagi takes the early lead by guiding it's raft through the water. Sonja stumbles as they reach the shore, helping Pagong crawl ahead to light their final torch and win. As a result, Pagong receives matches and immunity from that night's Tribal Council. At Tagi's camp, Richard and Rudy bond while Sean tends to Sonja's injuries. As the first vote approaches, Stacey talks of voting out Rudy for being overbearing, however at Tribal Councils, a plurality of the tribe instead decides to vote out their choice of weakest link, Sonja. 
2 "The Generation Gap" Recap June 7, 2000 18.10 7.5/25

Following their Tribal Council, Tagi finds its' fish traps remain empty. Disappointed that Rudy was not voted out, Stacey suggests he's not made for the game, while Rudy believes Stacey isn't cut out for wilderness survival. Richard reveals to his tribe that he is gay, making Dirk uncomfortable. It doesn't discourage Rudy, who still sees Rich as a strong competitor. At Pagong, Ramona is dehydrated and ill whilst B.B. refuses to quit working. Greg and Colleen begin to grow close. Greg's evening game shows tribe spirits are high, though B.B. continues to annoy his tribe by washing his clothes in drinking water. At Tagi, Sean crafts a fishing pole to try and catch food for the group. Both tribes receive tree mail, foretelling a disgusting competition. B.B. suggests Pagong throw the challenge to eliminate him, but the tribe refuses.

  • Immunity challenge: One-by-one, each castaway is given an insect grub to consume. If any individual refuses to each their bug, their tribe loses the challenge. The tiebreaker sees one member of each tribe (chosen by the opposing tribe) racing to eat two larvae, with the first player done winning immunity for their tribe.
Ultimately, despite Gervase's struggles, everyone is able to eat their assigned grub, forcing each tribe to select one person from the opposite group to eat two bugs in a tiebreaker face-off. Stacey beats Gervase and as a result, Pagong is sent to Tribal Council where Ramona's weakness earns her two votes while B.B. receives the rest and is voted out. 
3 "Quest for Food" Recap June 14, 2000 23.25 9.4/29

At the Tagi tribe, Stacey still wanted to get rid of Rudy and tried to create a girl alliance to do so, but Susan didn't want to be a part of the plan. Richard proved his worth following his tribe winning the reward challenge, as he used the spear won to catch several fish. At Pagong, Greg and Colleen found a big mud pit that the entire tribe was able to enjoy.

  • Reward challenge: Each tribe swam out to an inner tube attached to a sunken treasure chest. Once all of the tribe members are at their tube, they would dive down and drag their chest to shore. The first tribe back with their chest would win fishing supplies.

Tagi won the reward challenge. Back at Pagong, everyone ate rats, including a hesitant Gervase and Ramona. At Tagi, Dirk annoyed everyone with his bible reading.

  • Immunity challenge: Each tribe built a stretcher, and raced into the woods to rescue one tribe member stuck in a tree. They then had to carry that tribe member back to the beach and to the first aid tent.
Pagong won the immunity challenge. At Tribal Council, Tagi voted out Stacey, who mentioned that people had changed their votes. 
4 "Too Little, Too Late?" Recap June 21, 2000 24.20 9.8/33

At Pagong, Ramona started to feel better after having been sick and tried to begin pulling her weight around camp, but Jenna said it might be too late for her despite the pair of them bonding more. After a tropical storm, Gretchen took a stand and suggested once again that they rebuild their shelter in the canopy away from the beach. Greg appeared to be providing light relief to their tribe, Gretchen said this will likely get him further in the game. At Tagi, Sean and Dirk spent most of their time fishing, but had no luck; Sean also tried to build a bowling alley. Kelly, Richard, Rudy and Susan created an alliance.

  • Reward challenge: The castaways had to make a distress signal. The goal was to make the best S.O.S. signal for the plane (with Jeff in it) to see. The best signal would win the tribe hammocks, towels and pillows, plus two additional items (one chosen by each tribe; Tagi chose a flay knife, Pagong chose a spice rack). Tagi won the challenge.
  • Immunity challenge: A five-part relay race: The first member swam to a buoy, dove down and retrieved a map in a bottle. The second member ran across a floating bridge with the bottle to a waiting boat, where the second and third members would paddle to shore. The fourth member would break the bottle, check the map, and sprint into the jungle to find a rope ladder and a key. For the final leg, the two remaining tribe members had to locate a buried treasure chest and dig it up. Tagi, being the first tribe to unearth their treasure chest and bring it back to the start line and have the key inside the lock, were the winners.
At the immunity challenge, Gervase had problems on the sprint into the jungle, one of the main reasons Pagong lost to Tagi again. They proceeded to vote out Ramona. Ramona thought it was her early illness that caused her to be the one voted out. 
5 "Pulling Your Own Weight" Recap June 28, 2000 23.98 9.6/31

At Tagi, Dirk and Sean were still trying to fish instead of helping around camp, but to no avail. Susan told them that it was a waste of time if they weren't catching anything. The tribe were worried about Dirk's weight loss. At Pagong, everyone felt vulnerable because their tribe was getting smaller. Greg and Colleen grew closer, with both of them choosing to sleep out in the jungle away from the others. Greg knew he was seeping somewhat into the role of leader, a role he didn't want.

  • Reward challenge: Tribes would select three tribe members to shoot for the tribe in three rounds. The first one was a blow gun, the second round was a sling shot, and the third round was a spear toss. The winning tribe would win fruit and chickens.

At the reward challenge, Joel helped Pagong win with his spear throwing after the first two rounds were tied. Dirk and Sean began to help around the camp but that didn't change their tribe members' minds, and they remained on the outs. The alliance of four were decided on getting one of them out at the next Tribal Council. At Pagong they decided to let their chickens lay eggs.

  • Immunity challenge: One person from each tribe rowed their boat around the buoys, picking up their tribe members waiting in the water. The first tribe to get all members back to shore won.
At the immunity challenge, Gervase finally led Pagong to victory and Kelly, the white water rafting guide, was upset that "she got beat by a guy who couldn't even swim". At Tagi's Tribal Council, the alliance of four claimed their first victim as Dirk was voted out. 
6 "Udder Revenge" Recap July 5, 2000 24.50 10.6/33

Both tribes were wondering what the merge was going to be like. Tagi was afraid due to their numerical deficit. At Pagong, Joel was confident because his tribe had the numbers, but Colleen thought Joel was an idiot because they weren't merging yet and still had a chance of going in even. Gervase offended the girls by telling them that they were dumber than a cow. One of Tagi's chickens was eaten by another creature. At Tagi, Richard began walking around camp naked.

  • Reward challenge: One at a time, each tribe member raced to a barrack. There were three different items in there (a can opener, a knife, and an Army helmet). The first tribe to get all of their items (with no duplicates) back to the start won a reward of canned foods and a chocolate bar.

At the reward challenge, Richard brought back a duplicate knife instead of a can opener and Pagong won by default. At Pagong, Joel tried to create an alliance with the group that would carry over after the merge but was shot down by the women of the tribe. The alliance was interpreted as being mean spirited on Joel's part. Joel started to get a little bossy, which annoyed the girls.

  • Immunity challenge: Both tribes raced through an Army obstacle course. The first two tribe members raced through the first part and met up with two more members, then they had to go through a puzzle and race to the finish line.
Tagi won the immunity challenge in a very close race. With help from Greg, the women of Pagong voted out Joel. 
7 "The Merger" Recap July 12, 2000 24.50 10.4/34

The day after Pagong voted Joel out, one person from each tribe went to the opposite tribe's camp and would then convene to decide which camp to live on. Jenna went to Tagi and Sean went to Pagong. After a bit of time at camp, Jenna and Sean met with each other at a neutral site to decide which camp they wanted to live on and what to name the new merged tribe. They were welcomed by a feast, including lobster and wine, and got to stay the night under a canopy shelter and on beds. The next day, Jenna and Sean decided to live at the Tagi beach and named their merged tribe Rattana. The ten castaways met up and everyone celebrated, except Rudy, who was annoyed because the population doubled.

  • Immunity challenge: All ten castaways submerged themselves underwater to see how long they could hold their breath. The top three castaways then had another competition of releasing buoys along a ladder submerged underwater. The first castaway to release all of their buoys would win immunity.
Greg won immunity after a close battle with Sean. At Tribal Council, the disorganized Pagong tribe and Sean were completely split and voted individually, while the Tagi alliance of Kelly, Richard, Rudy and Susan stayed together and voted out Gretchen. 
8 "Thy Name is Duplicity" July 19, 2000 26.15 11.4/35

At camp, the remaining members of the former Pagong tribe felt vulnerable because the Tagi tribe voted out their leader Gretchen. Jenna decided her best move was to get closer to the other women, all of which were Tagi members, if she was to survive. Jenna put her plan into action and seemed to sway Susan who at first thought Jenna was going to be really annoying. Richard started to worry about who voted for him at Tribal Council.

  • Reward challenge: Each tribe member was to shoot at an archery target with a bow and arrow. The closest mark to the bullseye won a video from home and the chance to send a video home to them.

At the reward challenge, Jeff showed everyone a sneak peek at the reward challenge except for Jenna because they never received a video for Jenna. Greg went first and no one hit the mark closer, so he won the reward and saw his home video from his sister and sent one back to her. Rudy thought there might be some incestual behavior between Greg and his sister though clearly took things the wrong way. Jenna was frustrated about losing the reward challenge and instead of watching Greg's video, continued to practice with the bow and arrow, continually hitting the target closer than Greg's mark. People began to realize that Richard liked Greg because of the way he was playing the game. Greg realized that Richard was a powerful player in this game.

  • Immunity challenge: Each member was connected to a piece of rope and needed to go to the checkpoints in number order (1–6) and collect the color carabiners at each check point and then cross the finish line.
Gervase won immunity. At Tribal Council, the Tagi alliance and a cross Jenna piggy-backed off of Sean's alphabet strategy and voted out Greg. 
9 "Old and New Bonds" Recap July 26, 2000 27.18 11.9/36

While Richard was catching fish, the other players began to realize that nobody voted him out because of his role as provider. Rudy didn't make the fire hot enough so the fish wasn't done when it got off the fire, and the attempt to recook it simply burnt it.

  • Reward challenge: A rope course with 16 legs, each leg had a medallion with the castaways number on it. First castaway to receive all of their medallions and get back to the center won a barbecue and letters from home.

At the reward challenge, Jenna wanted to win because she didn't hear anything from her family at the last challenge. It was a race between Colleen and Kelly, which Colleen narrowly won. When Colleen won, Jeff told her she could pick one other person and she instantly chose Jenna. After the reward challenge, it was Richard's 39th birthday and he celebrated in his "birthday suit". Richard spent his entire birthday naked which disturbed some of his tribemates, especially Colleen and Jenna.

  • Immunity challenge: The castaways started on a square and moved one square at a time. As they moved, they had to flip over the square they were just on. Each castaway would go until they could no longer move. Last person standing wins immunity.
Rudy won immunity over Sean. Sean was convinced that his alphabet strategy of voting for people was the fairest way and that there was no alliance because he wasn't asked to be a part of it. He continued to vote that way and even told Jenna beforehand that he was voting for her but that he didn't think it would make a difference. At Tribal Council he was once again proven wrong, as Richard, Rudy, and Sue again piggy-backed off his vote and Jenna was voted out. 
10 "Crack in the Alliance" Recap August 2, 2000 27.41 11.9/38

Some people were happy that Jenna was voted out because she was getting on everyone's nerves. Everyone knew that Sean voted for Jenna and that Kelly didn't, so the remainder of the Tagi alliance felt betrayed. The alliance thought about replacing Kelly with Sean because he might have been more valuable. Richard's plan was to catch more fish once Colleen and Gervase were gone. At tree mail, the castaways were surprised by cigars and a note saying that Gervase's son Gunnar was born the day prior, which they celebrated.

  • Reward challenge: Each person started at one end of a balance beam. There were three rounds, where the first half to make it to the other end of the balance beam would move on. The first person to get to the end with both feet on the platform without falling off would win a slice of Pizza and a phone call home.

Gervase narrowly beat Richard at the reward challenge and had a chance to call his girlfriend and daughter to see how his baby was doing. He shared his slice of pizza with everyone. While he was making his phone call, Rudy questioned Gervase's life choices, namely having four children out of wedlock, and said that having babies out of wedlock would have never happened when he was his age and that the girl would be "taken out of town" and dealt with.

  • Immunity challenge: Each castaway had a few minutes to grab all of the kindling necessary to build a fire. They then had to take their torch out to the water to floating woks, light their torch, and bring it back to their pile of wood to start their fire. The first person to burn through their rope won.
At the immunity challenge, Richard easily won. At Tribal Council, the five Tagi members decided that Gervase was a bigger threat over Colleen, voting him out. Ultimately Kelly decided to vote with her alliance despite her urges to join forces with the others. 
11 "Long Hard Days" Recap August 9, 2000 28.00 12.1/38

The Tagi alliance began to crumble because Kelly was always talking to the remaining enemy of the alliance, Colleen. Camp life started to take a toll on everyone.

  • Reward challenge: Each castaway was given a questionnaire about Borneo. The person who answered the most correctly won an overnight trip on a yacht and was given a Visa card.

Sean won the reward and was surprised to see his dad on the yacht. Sean told Kelly he was going to take her for the feast, but chose Richard instead, which infuriated the women. Sean brought his dad back to camp to meet everyone, who attempted to update them on current events and the stock market (although Sue thought he didn't know anything), and before he left, he gave each person a care package from their loved ones, which rejuvenated their spirits.

  • Immunity challenge: Each person stood next to each other on a set of 5 planks. One plank would be removed over time until they got down to one plank. Whoever stayed on the longest would win.
At the immunity challenge, Rudy fell off first. Rich attempted to annoy people off the planks by singing "99 bottles of beer on the wall" until he fell off. On the beach, Rich thought it was funny that Colleen was really trying to win immunity when she had no chance of going home tonight because they were going to blindside Kelly. Sean was third to go, followed almost immediately by Sue. Colleen fell off after 2 hours and 54 minutes, giving immunity to Kelly and foiling the Tagi alliance plans. At Tribal Council, Sean was grilled for taking Rich on the reward instead of Kelly. Colleen, the last remaining member of Pagong, was voted out. 
12 "Death of an Alliance" Recap August 16, 2000 28.67 12.7/38

With only Tagi tribe members left, the two people that felt vulnerable were Kelly and Sean. Kelly mentioned that she didn't trust Rich, while Rich conspired to get Kelly off next. Sean thought he was stuck with the most conniving people ever. Tempers flared at camp as Kelly and Susan had a fight about their alliance since Kelly didn't vote with them again, and Sue said that Kelly made them all look like idiots. Richard attempted to smooth things over, although he said that the fight played to his advantage. Sue got stung by a ray and her hand swelled up. On day 34, all of the castaways talked about how they missed home.

  • Reward challenge: Under a time limit of five minutes, tribe members dove into a mud pit and covered their body with as much mud as they can, then raced back and scraped it off into a bucket. They could not carry mud in their arms or in their hands, only their body. The buckets are then weighed, and the heaviest bucket would win a cold beer, then picked up, blindfolded and taken to a mysterious bar to watch the first five minutes of this season.

Kelly collected 15.9 lbs at the reward challenge, followed by Sean (15.4), Susan (15), Rich (12.4), and Rudy (10). After the reward challenge, Susan and Kelly rekindled their friendship. Kelly went with Jeff to watch the first 5 minutes of episode 1 and talked to Jeff about how the game was going for her. On day 36, Kelly and Susan agreed to keep civil with each other, although Susan told Kelly she didn't want her in the final 3 because she was such a threat. Sean knew he needed to win immunity and attempted to exploit the Kelly-Susan friendship.

  • Immunity challenge: "Survivor Witch Project": Jeff told the castaways a story about Borneo folklore. Once he was done, the castaways went out to the woods (where the masks with questions on them were scattered) with a video camera to record their answers. The first person to get back to the start with all of the masks and the questions right on tape won immunity.
Kelly won her third challenge in a row. Sean said he was definitely winning this thing even though it would be an uphill battle. Rich tried to decide whether he would be voting for Sean or Rudy, although Rudy was confident that it would be him and Rich in the final 2. While everyone spoke of voting for different people, in the end the original Tagi 4 stuck together and Sean was voted out. 
13 "The Final Four" Recap August 23, 2000 51.69 22.8/54

The final four reflected on how much their bodies have changed, and how the game was played by them and by others. Kelly said she felt like the odd person out and was stressed because she didn't feel safe. She said that she was now playing for herself. Richard, Rudy, and Sue were planning to vote out Kelly if she didn't win immunity.

  • Immunity challenge: Jeff asked 10 questions about the jury members. The person who got the most the questions right won immunity.

At the challenge, Kelly and Sue were tied after 10 questions, but Kelly got the tiebreaker question correct, giving Kelly her fourth challenge win and third immunity in a row. Directly after at Tribal Council, there was a 2–2 tie between Richard and Susan. During the revote in which only Rudy and Kelly voted, Kelly changed her vote and Susan was voted out.

At 4:00 am on day 38, the remaining three were awoken by Jeff, told to put on something comfortable, and took a long boat ride to their rite of passage and final immunity challenge. For their rite of passage, they covered themselves with mud, walked through palm fronds held by locals, passed the torches of their fallen comrades, then passed through a bamboo curtain and walked barefoot through a fire pit.

  • Immunity challenge: Each tribe member held on to the immunity idol while standing on a small log. The person who lasted the longest wins immunity.

After two hours of holding on the idol, Jeff tempted the three with oranges. After 212 hours, Richard gave a speech, said he wouldn't be able to outlast Kelly, and stepped down voluntarily. He said that it was a game of odds and he didn't know what the winner would actually do. After three hours, the two left switched positions while keeping their hand on the idol and were to do so every half hour. While the two were still standing on the pole, Rich addressed the alliance to Jeff and how he wasn't surprised that Kelly changed her vote. After 4 hours, 11 minutes, Rudy took his hand off the idol while switching spots, and Kelly won immunity yet again. Rich and Rudy both said it was in Kelly's best interest to keep themselves. At Tribal Council Kelly voted out Rudy because she thought she might have a better chance of winning against Richard.

At the final Tribal Council, Gervase asked if there was one, two or three things they would change about their time on the island, if anything at all. Rich said trusting people so easily, Kelly said making an alliance. Jenna asked who they would put in the final two and why. Rich said Rudy and Greg; Kelly said Sonja and Gretchen. Sean had no questions, but congratulated the two and thanked Kelly for being capable and keeping camp afloat, and told Rich that he enjoyed his company although he played the game differently. Colleen asked what three character traits got them where they are and are essential to get future players to the finals; Kelly said faith, strong will, and likability, while Rich said self-awareness, observation of relationships, and ethics. Rudy said he had nothing to say to those two, but felt dumb after mistakenly removing his hand in the final immunity challenge. Greg had them choose a number between 1 and 10 (Rich said 7; Kelly 3). Sue gave her famous "snakes and rats" speech. In the end, Rudy, Sue, Sean, and Greg voted for Rich and Jenna, Gervase, and Colleen voted for Kelly. With that, Richard Hatch became Survivor's first millionaire by a vote of 4–3. 

Voting history[edit]

^4 This castaway was unable to vote due to being tied for most votes in the initial ballot.

Production[edit]

The abandoned institute is on the island of the boomerang's open "V." This is the leeward side of the island. It faces west, and the South China Sea sunsets turn the sand orange-purple each evening at 6:30. One these shores we built a dock for offloading equipment, then living quarters with cold-water showers for sixty-five personnel-the camera crews, the production staff, and the assorted other individuals vital to producing thirteen hours of prime-time television.

Mark Burnett, Survivor: The Ultimate Game — Page 11

In 1998, CBS offered Mark Burnett the chance to present his idea of this reality show to producers. In October 1999, CBS held a casting call for a new reality show concept. The idea was Survivor, in which sixteen people would be stuck on an island 20 miles (32 km) away from the mainland of Borneo. Ten main cameras were set on the island that would film the castaways every day. Every three days, a Tribal Council would be held in which one castaway would be voted off the island. The last castaway to be on the island would win $1 million.

Over 6,000 people applied for the show; 800 were then interviewed in sixteen cities. 48 people were then chosen, and after background checks and psychological evaluations done by the producers, the final sixteen contestants and two alternates were picked.[1]

As the survivors awaited the game's start, Survivor crews prepared the island for reward and immunity challenges, removing any harmful items, checking for any harmful animals in specific locations, and building a Tribal Council set. Camera and other crews were sent to the island three weeks in advance for testing. On the opposite side of the island from the tribes, headquarters were set up for the producers, and crew to live in on the island. This facility included many traditional trailers with running water, televisions, and one phone line. The Tribal Council set was built two hundred yards from the crew's facility. The Tribal Council set was 30 by 30 feet (9.1 by 9.1 m) with no walls and only a platform. In the middle of the set was a fire lava pit providing fire for the torches, which represented the castaways' life in the game.[1][8]

On March 7, 2000, the contestants were flown to Los Angeles, then to the city of Kota Kinabalu in Malaysian Borneo. From there, they were taken by boat to their island. Contestants were not allowed to speak to one another until they got on the boat headed towards their beaches.[1] The two tribes shared the island of Pulau Tiga, which was divided by over 20 miles (32 km) of forest. The castaways were surrounded by wildlife such as pythons, kraits, adders, monkeys, monitor lizards, and white-bellied sea eagles.[1][8] The show was set to air in the summer of 2000.[1][8]

Reception[edit]

I always believed it was going to generate strong water cooler conversation. Nobody could have predicted the ratings success. But I knew that the premise — a group of people marooned on an island, where they had to survive by working together, and they had to work against each other to win a million-dollar prize-I knew that premise was superior.

Mark Burnett, The New York Times[9]

Survivor: Borneo received mixed reactions in the media. Bill Carter, a writer for The New York Times stated that Survivor has "clearly begun to emerge as part of the wider culture, with news and discussion about the show widespread on television and radio talk shows and coverage increasing in newspapers."[9] On the Late Show with David Letterman, David Letterman began a segment titled, "Top 10 Things That'll Get You Thrown Off the Survivor Island." During the first season, USA Today held coverage of the show as if it were a sporting event, listing which participant was voted off. USA Today also held a poll to see who viewers would have voted off. With 26 percent, Susan Hawk won the poll, although it had no effect on the game, as Sue made it to 4th place. CBS's The Early Show held an interview with each contestant the day after the episode in which they were voted off aired. By the second week, the show had already gained over 18 million viewers, beating out ABC's show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? in ratings.[10] After the season finale, Carter said that Survivor "built over a 13-week run to what was expected last night to be the biggest single television audience ever assembled for a summer television series, far eclipsed every expectation the network had when it acquired the rights to the show last year." Leslie Moonves, the president of CBS Television said that "it has beaten our expectations by about double."[9] The finale of Survivor was watched by 51.7 million viewers, the second-highest viewership of any American television episode during the first decade of the 21st century, exceeded only by the finale of Friends.[11] The finale had higher ratings than the World Series, NBA finals, NCAA men's basketball finals, and Grammy Awards of that year. CBS was able to make the cost of commercial advertisers up to $600,000 during the season finale.[9]

Survivor: Borneo was criticized by the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) in response to footage showing the contestants trapping rats on the island, initially for fish bait but later for human consumption.[12]

I plead to the jury tonight to think a little bit of the island we have been on. This island is full of, pretty much, only two things: snakes and rats. And in the end of Mother Nature, we have Richard the snake, who knowingly went after prey; and Kelly, who turned into the rat that ran around like rats do on this island, trying to run from the snake. I believe we owe it to the island spirits we have come to know to let it end in the way that Mother Nature intended: For the snake to eat the rat.

Susan Hawk, Survivor: Borneo, Episode 13[13]

Susan Hawk's "snakes and rats" speech given during the final Tribal Council has been cited as one of the greatest and more memorable speeches in the show's history,[14][15]

Survivor was the surprise summer hit show of the season garnering an average of 28.3 million viewers with an 12.1/36 share in the 18/49 market over its 13-week run. Thus, it achieved the second-highest ranking and the second-highest amount of average viewers of the entire series, behind The Australian Outback. In addition to the highest amount of finale viewers, it also garnered the highest amount of reunion viewers (37 million).

DVD release[edit]

The DVD release of season one was released by CBS Home Entertainment in the U.S. on May 11, 2004, after it had completed broadcast on television. As well as every episode from the season, the DVD release features bonus material including commentary, interviews and behind-the-scenes featurettes.[8][16]

The Complete First Season
Set details[16] Special features[8]
  • Documentaries
  • Episode summaries
    • Highlights
    • Immunity challenges
    • Reward challenges
    • Voting results
  • Survivor profiles
  • Survivor favorite
  • Voting history
  • Final words
  • The Island
Release dates[3]
 Canada  United States
May 11, 2004 May 11, 2004

Stacey Stillman controversy[edit]

In early 2001, Borneo contestant Stacey Stillman sued CBS, claiming that executive producer Mark Burnett arranged her exit and orchestrated the show's outcome. Her 14-page lawsuit alleged that two of her fellow tribemates, Dirk Been and Sean Kenniff, were persuaded to change their vote from 72-year-old Rudy Boesch to her.[17] Stillman sought restitution for lost prize money, plus $75,000 representing out-of-pocket expenses and punitive damages.[18] While CBS and Burnett denied the allegations, Been supported them; Kenniff admitted talking to Burnett, but told USA Today that the vote wasn't influenced and Burnett said only to "vote your conscience."[19] Burnett counter-sued Stillman for at least $5,000,000.[20] Eventually the case was settled out of court.[21]

References[edit]

General
Specific
  1. ^ a b c d e f g Burnett, Mark; Martin Dugard (2000). Survivor: The Ultimate Game. New York, New York: TV Books. p. 237. 
  2. ^ "Variety: 'Survivor' Finale Racks Up Phenomenal Ratings". Variety. 2000-08-25. Retrieved 2013-12-22. 
  3. ^ a b "Survivor I — Season 1 (Canadian)". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved 2008-11-21. 
  4. ^ "Richard Hatch Sentenced To 51 Months". The Smoking Gun. 2006-05-16. Retrieved 2013-12-22. 
  5. ^ Porter, Rick (2004-01-20). "Burnett Wasted Little Time Finding 'Survivor' Stars". Zap2it. Retrieved 2013-12-22. 
  6. ^ Ross, Dalton (December 16, 2013). "'Survivor': Gervase explains why he thought he could win". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 21 December 2013. 
  7. ^ "Survivor Season 1". spottedratings.com. 2011-12-08. Retrieved 2012-05-04. 
  8. ^ a b c d e Mark Burnett and Charlie Parsons-Executive Producer, Jeff Probst-Host (2004). Never Before Seen Footage (DVD). Paramount Pictures. 
  9. ^ a b c d Carter, Bill (2000-08-24). "CBS Is Surprise Winner in Ratings Contest". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-11-22. 
  10. ^ Carter, Bill (06-08-2000). "'Survivor' Is a Strong Draw, Proving Itself a Hit for CBS". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-11-22. 
  11. ^ Hibbert, James (2009-12-02). "Top 10 most-watched shows of the decade". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2013-12-22. 
  12. ^ "Fury at 'tasteless' TV rat barbecue". BBC. 2000-06-18. Retrieved 2008-12-09. 
  13. ^ "Survivor: Endgame". Television Without Pity. 2000-08-23. Retrieved 2008-12-09. 
  14. ^ Denhart, Andy (2007-05-14). "Broken promises abound on ‘Survivor’ finale". MSNBC. Retrieved 2013-12-22. 
  15. ^ Probst, Jeff (2008-12-04). "Jeff Probst blogs 'Survivor: Gabon' (episode 12)". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2013-12-22. 
  16. ^ a b "Survivor I — Season 1". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved 2008-11-21. 
  17. ^ Hartlaub, Peter (2001-02-06). "ONE ANGRY 'SURVIVOR'". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2013-12-22. 
  18. ^ ""Survivor" Castaway Claims Show Was Rigged". The Smoking Gun. 2001-02-06. Retrieved 22 December 2013. 
  19. ^ Gary, Levin (2001-02-06). "Ex-'Survivor' claims her exit was rigged". USA Today. Retrieved 2013-12-22. 
  20. ^ "Survivor Producer Blasts Extortion Bid". The Smoking Gun. February 20, 2001. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  21. ^ Paskin, Willa (May 23, 2013). "Dave Hester of 'Storage Wars' Sues A&E: 'The Series Is Faked' - Businessweek". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 

External links[edit]