Survivor: Winners at War lacking one player Jeff Probst couldn’t get

Photo: Timothy Kuratek/CBS Entertainment ©2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Photo: Timothy Kuratek/CBS Entertainment ©2019 CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

Though there are 20 great winners competing in Survivor: Winners at War starting next month, Jeff Probst laments missing out on one of his faves.

With a pool of 37 potential individual winners (36 if asking Chris Underwood to fly out a week after winning Edge of Extinction is too much an ask), there were always going to be snubs with who comes back in an all-winners season. Survivor: Winners at War does have a compelling mix of old-school and new-school players, including some of the show’s very best and brightest from all eras.

However, with so many male winners compared to the females, the number of those left on the outside looking in are fairly more numerous. If it were up to Jeff Probst, there would be one winner thrown into the mix that hasn’t been cast for Winners at War, as the latest in a series of interviews from Dalton Ross at EW shows that he cannot help himself but bring on a former Exile Island mentor.

“I can tell you that of all the people we wanted, I would say (John) Cochran is the only one that would have been on the list [where] if he had said yes would probably have a spot on the show,” Probst said. It’s been no surprise that Probst would have wanted the two-time player to return, as he is a staple of almost every reunion special since his win and is often spoken of favorably by the showrunner.

The problem for both CBS and Survivor is that John Cochran is currently an employee of the network, having been a writer for shows like The Millers, Kevin Can Wait, and currently Star Trek: Lower Decks. That presents a conflict of interest if the other castaways have to face off against an employee of the network.

Next. Survivor winners: Ranking the best Sole Survivors by season. dark

You might be thinking, “Wait a minute, wasn’t Parvati Shallow a member of the press in past seasons?” There’s a mighty big difference between contract workers interviewing others on location for past seasons and at the reunion with those actively writing shows as members of the Writer’s Guild of America. We have a great crew of players as it is.