After a disastrously scary report from a former member of Survivor press that Edge of Extinction could be permanent, #EndEdgeofExtinction is formed.
Late last month, I naively believed, under the circumstances that 20 winners needed to form Survivor: Winners at War could only be possible thanks to extra assurances to win, bringing back the Edge of Extinction twist was “acceptable.” It would be infinitely more preferable to avoid extra twists and just enjoy dynamic gameplay from 20 people vying for an ultimate prize, but with the hope things would be slightly different, I had thought it would be the means to season 40’s end.
However, had I known what The Hollywood Reporter writer and former Survivor press member Josh Wigler knew about Jeff Probst’s understanding of, and appreciation for, Edge of Extinction was, I would never find it acceptable under any circumstances. I’ve covered the numerous ways it is a failure of the show’s institution, and now it seems as though it may be possible Survivor will be broken forever.
Josh Wigler went on a frankly concerning rant about Probst’s appreciation for twists over players on Twitter, eventually revealing that Jeff’s love for Edge of Extinction is at the point where if people don’t openly request it to stop, “it’s probably on US Survivor for the rest of Jeff’s reign.” He even noted that, on top of the mentor madness of Boston Rob and Sandra last season, it was “very nearly on” Island of the Idols!
With Josh Wigler no longer actively covering Survivor as a member of the press, he’s been able to provide a more honest take on the show’s concerning obsession with layering advantages on top of one another instead of learning from its best seasons, like David vs. Goliath. In fact, he’s asking for people on Twitter to tweet out #EndEdgeofExtinction and tag both the show and showrunner’s Twitter accounts.
Despite the request going out at almost 8 p.m. ET on a Saturday night, fans have noted that there’s a month before the show’s creative department has to lockdown season 41 plans and have already expressed their shared concerns on Twitter.
What makes this latest fan outcry a bit more frantic is that Jeff Probst has taken on a more entrenched stance when it comes to disappointing Survivor ideas. In a recent ET Canada interview, he noted that “there appear to be more critics in the world … on social media than there are creatives,” sidelining those who have justified criticisms of the show while later adding he sees his job as to avoid the show becoming stale.
The problem with this idea is that Jeff Probst had taken fan feedback and criticism when it was important to do so in the past. He stopped doing Redemption Island twists because Mike White, then a friend of Probst’s (as opposed to a runner-up), told him it was a bad idea. We don’t have the overpowered Super Idol anymore because Jeff Probst listened to fans.
Winners at War is bringing back 20 winners, including those who haven’t been on TV for close to a decade and a half, including some of the best winners in the show’s history. The fact that Jeff Probst feels he has to bring Edge of Extinction, throw Fire Tokens on top, and God knows how many more twists shows that he has no faith in some of the best players the show has produced, which is why I hope to see #EndEdgeofExtinction trending soon.