Jenna Morasca: Can The Best Player Win On Survivor All Star?

Jenna Morasca wonders if the best player can win on an All-Star version of 'Survivor'? (CBS)

Jenna Morasca wonders if the best player can win on an All-Star version of 'Survivor'? (CBS)

Colby rides again, Rob fights like hell and Russell has balls of steel! This is why I love ‘Survivor‘ – everything can change in a flash. One moment Colby was about to go home and then the next he was kicking ass in a challenge and body slamming Jerri. The big picture or big lesson to be learned here is this: the past will always come back to haunt you.

‘Survivor’ is a game that’s designed to be played with strangers, people with varied backgrounds from all parts of the country. The greatest part is that you can go into the game as anyone you want, hold any job you desire, and portray any personality you can think of. During it’s run, contestants have conjured up occupations, health issues, family problems, just to name a few, in order to get a leg up.

When playing an All-Star version, though, this is a major problem. It’s hard to separate real emotions from game play. It’s impossible to to conjure up a new identity. It’s impossible to be anyone other than who you are. We run into each other at charity events, become friends, steal boyfriends (wouldn’t you like ot know?) and babysit each others children. Truth is, for many, the relationships are far deeper than what can be shown on 13 episodes. On an all-star version, it is the person who lays low or is the least well-known that does good. As I said, the past always comes back to haunt you in this game. We saw it happen again with Boston Rob.

Take the first All-Star version in 2004. Most of the people voted out before the jury were some of the best players on their original season. Everyone knew these people were dangerous and wanted to vote them out immediately. Hatch, Rob C, Ethan, Tina, Rudy, Colby, and Jerri were all voted out PRE JURY on the first all-stars. Each of these players did amazing or won their original season and their past would not let them survive another day. The same thing just happened to Boston Rob.

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There was a scene in this episode where Jerri mentioned that she wanted to trust Rob, but she can’t. Rob knew it, too. He admitted he had no legs to stand on. All the sneaking around and lying he did on the previous seasons (the same sneaking and lying that made him famous secured him another spot this season) screwed him on Heroes vs. Villains.

I guarantee you will see this concept rear its ugly head over and over again.

People complain every week they want to get rid of Parvati because she was so dangerous on her other seasons. The only person immune to this virus is Russell. Why Russell?

Well, Russell is a mystery. No one knows a thing about him because the current contestants started filming this season before Russell’s first season even aired. They only knew that he was evil enough – and/or good enough – to make it on the villain’s tribe. And while that might be enough to make one skeptical, there is no actual proof to really cause disdain for him. No one has any idea what Russell is capable of.

Many fans think that this gives Russell a huge advantage, and while I agree, I also thinkit’s a disadvantage as well.


Again, I look to the past.

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When we were preparing for the 2004 All-Star, we all got to watch our game, see what we did right and wrong, and adjust it for the new season. Russell didn’t get that opportunity. His season had not even aired on national TV before he was playing all over again. In addition, he had not even filmed the live finale, which means that he had no idea if he had won or lost his season!

He probably went on Heroes vs Villains thinking he won his previous season. Knowing what he knows now, after watching himself lose his original season, might have caused him to change his game a bit.

There is always something on Survivor that bites you in the butt. It may be your past coming back to haunt you (Boston Rob) and it may be that you never had a chance to adjust your own game (Russell). That is what makes this game so unpredictable.

Now let me switch gets. There have been rumblings and requests for a celebrity version of Survivor. Wouldn’t that be fun!!!

The show’s fearless leader, Mark Burnett, has suggested he would never produce a celebrity version unless he was able to cast A-listers. I’m not surprised. Mark is and has always been totally devoted to ‘Survivor’. He still manages to find beautiful locations, interesting characters, and he has the unique ability to control the weather (how does it always rain at challenges and tribal council?). I have vivid memories of the incredible jungle landscapes from my time on ‘Survivor: Amazon’. But I will always remember a moment involving Mark.

We were walking to one of the challenges I won, of course. It was the challenge with slingshots and shuffleboards, and I actually I felt beaten down, like I might be going home. Then I saw Mark standing behind the cameras and the medical team. He looked at me for all of three seconds. It was a look thatsaid, “just remember what a gift this game is, and how special this is.” It was strong and powerful.

It lit the torch in me.

I started that challenge ready to blast a flamethrower to anyone who got in my way. Only someone who loves something that much can portray it in just one look. That is why ‘Survivor’ has endured the test of time.

So in honor of a potential celebrity versin of ‘Survivor,’ I’m going to provide the list of celebrities I would like to see play the game. Below are the celebrities I would put on my hero tribe, the Villains will come next week.

Celebrity Hero dream cast:

Sandra Bullock – America’s reigning sweetheart.
Natalie Portman – Good looks and brains, a deadly Survivor combo.
Heidi Klum – The lovable supermodel will fit right in and look killer in a bikini.
Janet Jackson – She is tough, determined, and kind.
Alyssa Milano – Hard working and opinionated without being overbearing.
Justin Bieber – Someone has to represent the younger audience, right? cue screams
Steve Carell – Funny = success.
Anderson Cooper – He can show us how survival is REALLY done
Rev. Run – Faith is always a good addition to camp life.
George Lopez – Watching him crack jokes with Steve Carell would liven things up.

Who is on your dream celebrity hero cast?

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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