Survivor Amazon: Most memorable moments from season six

Survivor winner Jenna Morasca - (Photo by Stephen Chernin/Getty Images)
Survivor winner Jenna Morasca - (Photo by Stephen Chernin/Getty Images) /

Survivor: The Amazon was the sixth season in the show’s history and still goes down as one of the better seasons. What were the most memorable moments from season six of Survivor?

After a blah season in Survivor: Thailand, it was important for the show to get back on track and find its mojo again. It did just that with Survivor: The Amazon, which finally did what fans of the show had been waiting to see from its early days.

That’s where we’ll start.

Battle of the sexes

Normally, I list the most memorable moments in order of how memorable they were, but it’s hard to go into much detail about this season without mentioning the biggest twist thrown our way. Survivor was finally dividing the tribes by gender; for the first time in the show’s history, it’d be women versus the men.

How this was revealed was that Jeff Probst called out a contestant one at a time and had them climb down into their respective boat. He called out four women and then paused before calling out a fifth. At that moment, the cast knew what was happening, and it was time for the battle of the sexes to get underway!

Women kicking butt

Perhaps it’s because I’m a woman, it’s natural for me to root for my gender, but I was really pulling hard for the Jabaru tribe in season six. It didn’t help the men’s case that when they realized it’d be eight guys versus eight women, Daniel said, “We’re never going to Tribal Council!”

The men were very cocky, and they weren’t shy about showing it.

That’s why it was quite entertaining when the women not only beat the men in the first Immunity Challenge but smoked them! It wasn’t looking that way early on in the challenge, but when it came to trying to cross the balance beam, Ryan and Daniel (karma much?) couldn’t get across it without either falling or their feet touching.

The women eventually finished their task, caught up to the men, and flew across the balance beam with ease. From there, they had one more task, and after Heidi got the final key to free them and the women crossed the finish line, a truly memorable moment in Survivor history had occurred.

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The women not only beat the men in this challenge, but they continued to hold their own in future challenges. In the first four episodes, the women and men each went to Tribal Council two times, and the women won their fair share of Reward Challenges, as well.

It was a great moment for Survivor that the women more than held their own and put the men in their place.

Fire at Jacaré

When it got down to the final five, Matthew won the reward challenge and opted to take Rob with him. That left Butch, Heidi, and Jenna to head back to camp where they realized their camp had been significantly burned.

The beginning of the episode made it a point to emphasize how much Butch loved collecting firewood. All of that firewood potentially being the reason why the tribe’s shelter and everyone’s (except Heidi’s) belongings being destroyed wouldn’t be a crazy notion at all.

No one jumped to those conclusions (except Rob in his confessional), but this moment proved how real the show is. Production didn’t step in to save people’s items or to put the fire out. Nope, anything that was in the path of the flames was destroyed.

The Magic-8 Ball that Rob brought as his luxury item was damaged, but he had it at the reunion and said it “survived” the fire.

Matthew’s machete

One of the creepier memories from the show’s history came in season six when Matthew decided he really loved his machete — as in, really loved it.

After the two tribes had merged, Matthew took a shine to the machete and one day just passed the time by sharpening it for hours. It freaked the other tribe members out, to say the least.

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We obviously have the hysterical confessional from Rob, where he says, “Why does he need the machete so sharp? I think he’s gonna kill us!” while Christy had another gem with, “Matt’s creepy. He’s creepy… Creepy.” 

Matthew said at the reunion show that he did this for show, but it’s hard to think why anyone would think sharpening a machete would make for a good character-building story. I’d have been terrified if I were on the Jacaré tribe, too!

Strippin’ for food

This is probably the most memorable moment from Survivor: The Amazon, and it’s not hard to see why. The first Immunity Challenge after the two tribes had merged was one of the traditional old school “stand on a perch and see how long you can stand it while Probst tempts you with food” challenges.

Well, early on in the challenge, Jenna and Heidi both mentioned that they’d take their clothes off for chocolate and peanut butter. Rob made it known how he felt on the matter by saying, “Get the girl some chocolate and peanut butter, Probst,” while Jeff went to see what he could do.

What followed was one of the most memorable moments in series history, as Jenna and Heidi stripped down to their birthday suits. For their efforts, they were rewarded with chocolate and peanut butter and eventually landed a spread in Playboy, as well.

While not everyone necessarily enjoyed this moment, it’s still a very iconic moment in the show’s history, and the fact that it’s still referred to 16 years later shows how memorable it truly was.

Survivor: The Amazon was a fun season that seems to be forgotten about more in recent times. Perhaps it’s because it was followed by Survivor: Pearl Islands, but it does seem like season six gets lost in the shuffle.

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Between good characters, a fun new twist that battled the genders against each other (much to the dismay of the younger members of the cast), and some moments we’ve yet to see again, Survivor: The Amazon still holds up 16 years later.