‘Survivor’: Jeff Probst Reveals Controversial Twists Are ‘Here to Stay’

During the Survivor Season 41 premiere, Jeff Probst declared that the show had entered a new era of the game, which included many fresh twists. However, multiple viewers were not fans of these changes to the CBS reality competition series. And unfortunately, the Survivor host has bad news for them.

Jeff Probst, who announces the twists during 'Survivor' Season 42, wears a black button-up shirt and a black, white, and green 'Survivor' baseball cap.
Jeff Probst | Photo by Robert Voets/CBS via Getty Images

‘Survivor’ Season 41 introduced multiple new twists to the game

Starting in Survivor Season 41, Jeff Probst and producers introduced a wide variety of new twists to the game. This includes the Prisoner’s Dilemma, Shot in the Dark, Knowledge is Power, Beware Advantages, Hourglass, Do or Die, and so on. And since CBS filmed seasons 41 and 42 back-to-back, both included these advantages and disadvantages.

Some of these new additions to Survivor excited fans, but many viewers are ready to leave a handful of them behind in season 42.

The Knowledge is Power twist backfired in Survivor Season 41 and 42, although it produced shocking moments at Tribal Council. And fans believe that both the Hourglass and Do or Die twists are unfair to castaways who have worked hard in the game. So it’s safe to say that many aspects of this “new era” of Survivor are controversial among the fandom.

Jeff Probst claims that the newer ‘Survivor’ twists will be seen in upcoming seasons

While speaking with Entertainment Weekly before the Survivor Season 42 finale, Jeff Probst addressed the future of the controversial twists.

“When we say this is a new era of the game, we mean it,” the host revealed. “We are establishing new markers. So things like small tribes, earn the merge, no food, risk/reward dilemmas, Shot in the Dark, are here to stay. Other specific twists will come and go depending on the season. We changed the game because we wanted to give players a new series of problems to solve.”

Probst continued, “The easiest way to frame it is to compare it to our very first season. Those players didn’t know they would have a chance to play for a food reward. So when they got hungry, they ate rat. Then in season 2, we had a new group of players who knew there would be a food reward, so they didn’t eat rat. They adapted to the game. That’s what we’re doing with this new era. The next group of players now has a bit of insight into this new version of Survivor.”

“They’re already thinking about when and how to best use a Shot in the Dark, or what they might do if they are presented with a risk/reward scenario? Or how do you keep an advantage a secret with a game design that is so public?” he pondered. “We don’t want everything to be a surprise. Instead, we’re building a new foundation of game elements and leaving it to the players to figure out how best to play.”

Other than Shot in the Dark, Probst didn’t specify which Survivor twists will carry over to future seasons. But the new additions will likely become a permanent aspect of the show.

The 26-day seasons are here to stay, too

Other than the new twists, one other aspect of this “new era” of Survivor is sticking around for the foreseeable future.

“This new 26-day game centered around limited supplies, no food, and penalties for losing was not designed as a one-off,” Jeff Probst told TV Insider. “We designed this specifically to give us a new game to play. And we believe there are still a lot of layers in this new game that we haven’t even begun to explore.”

So fans should expect to see a 26-day game in Survivor Season 43 instead of the previous 39-day seasons.

Survivor Season 43 will premiere in the fall of 2022.

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