[USAToday] Survivor flubs, red herrings, and aftermath.

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From: Adam Rifkin (adam@KnowNow.com)
Date: Sat Aug 19 2000 - 00:48:02 PDT

This one's for Jeff... :)


> CBS bungles, bogus hints kept fans going
> By Cisar G. Soriano, USA TODAY
> In a 1980 summer cliffhanger, CBS made "Who Shot J.R?" a nationwide
> catchphrase and protected the closely guarded secret from fans of
> Dallas. Twenty years later, the network seems to have done it again,
> foiling investigative journalists and nosy fans on the Internet. Los
> Alamos and the Pentagon should be so lucky.
> But CBS wasn't without fault. Several glitches at the start of the
> season left a trail of clues before the network caught on and joined the
> game by releasing false information.
> Network flubs
> Episode 1-2: A split-second frame in the show's introductory theme song
> included an image of the final nine contestants seated at a tribal
> council meeting. It's a picture of the two tribes combined, thereby
> spoiling any suspense about who was knocked off in the previous
> episodes. This information, combined with CBS previews and
> frame-by-frame analysis of footage provided to Access Hollywood and
> Entertainment Tonight, allowed the detailed-filled fan Web site
> SurvivorSucks.com to accurately predict the exiled members until they
> were hoodwinked by the show's producers with a string of red herrings.
> Episode 7: A group of contestants was shown walking toward a tribal
> council meeting. Gervase is wearing an immunity necklace, an event that
> did not occur until Episode 8. That led viewers to conclude that Gervase
> was safe from expulsion for at least one more week.
> Episode 8: CBS Web masters inadvertently posted that evening's episode
> summary nearly six hours before the show aired on the East Coast,
> spoiling the fun for anyone who happened to view CBS.com. The Web site
> was then taken down for repairs until later that evening. However, there
> is speculation that CBS may have purposefully leaked the summary on the
> site to make its Web masters appear like bumbling idiots, which in turn
> gave credence to a previous theory (see "The 'X' theory" below) that the
> Web site had leaked the identity of the winner: Gervase.
> Episode 9: Trailers pictured Richard carrying the immunity
> necklace. Another editing mistake. He did not win immunity in this
> episode, but the image led fans to predict correctly that he would win
> immunity in Episode 10.
> Red herrings
> The "X" theory: A Canadian college student earned his five minutes of
> fame when he announced he'd discovered the winner of Survivor. The fan,
> who goes by the name CAPLOCK, uncovered a hidden area on the CBS Web
> site where images of contestants are stored. All but Gervase's picture
> were crossed out with a scarlet "X," leading some to believe he was the
> winner. The X Theory was invalidated when Gervase was booted in Episode
> 10. Producer Mark Burnett later admitted to staging the hidden image.
> The "final four" image: In the introduction to Episode 8, a quick image
> showed what appeared to be the final four contestants at a tribal
> council meeting. The pictured castaways were Kelly, Gervase, Richard and
> Sean, with only four torch lights visible. Like the X Theory, this
> conspiracy theory was scotched when Gervase was expelled. Burnett and
> production team member Marty Dugard admit to digitally altering a tribal
> council image to remove other cast members. "We underestimated the
> mania," Dugard told Alberta, Canada's Edmonton Journal . "All of a
> sudden, it was like 'OK, if you guys are going to play that game, let's
> see what we can do to play with your minds a little bit.'"

One more for good measure:


Revealing survivals and reprisals
By Cisar G. Soriano, USA TODAY

> Fame has been a double-edged spear for the cast of Survivor. No sooner
> did the series hit the air than castaways began making TV appearances
> and signing show-biz deals . . . and facing skeletons freshly exhumed
> from their closets. A rundown of their off-island exploits:
> Richard. Two days after returning home to Newport, R.I., Richard Hatch
> was arrested and charged with child abuse April 27 after his adopted
> 10-year-old son claimed he was forced to run 6 miles at 4:30 a.m. A
> judge later returned the boy. But Hatch has since sued the state,
> charging that police officials violated his civil rights and
> emotionally abused his son. It's all part of, as Richard would say,
> "the process" now; cases are pending.
> Kelly. An arrest warrant is out for river-rafting guide Kelly
> Wiglesworth for allegedly using a stolen credit card in 1995, running
> up charges of nearly $600, including an extravagant dinner -- at the
> Olive Garden. Police in Greensboro, N.C., were unsure of her
> whereabouts until she popped up on 28 million TV screens. After moving
> to Las Vegas, Kelly was arrested again in July 1997 for biting her
> husband's nose three weeks after they were married. The charges didn't
> stick, but neither did the husband.
> Stacey. Conniving lawyer Stacey Stillman appeared in one of those
> annoying Reebok sneaker spots that have aired non-stop during
> Survivor. Her one line in the ad, addressed to the commercial series'
> two inept, leech-ridden adventurers: "Losers!" Crusty contractor
> B.B. Andersen also will appear in a Reebok ad, which will air during
> Wednesday's finale.
> Jenna. Jenna Lewis is considering taking Playboy's reported $500,000
> offer to pose nude. "I'm not kidding. I didn't win the million
> dollars. It may hinder some of my other career moves. But it would
> also take care of me and my daughters for many, many years to come,"
> Lewis told the Toronto Sun. She attended a party at Hef's Playboy
> Mansion August 5.
> Colleen. After frolicking with Greg on the island, cute college
> student Colleen Haskell became the object of admiration for scores of
> male fans on the Internet. She reportedly turned down an offer to pose
> nude in Playboy but has, also reportedly, been offered an on-air job
> at a radio station in the Miami area, where she lives.
> Gervase. YMCA basketball coach Gervase Peterson has been spotted in a
> new Jeep Cherokee, has supposedly caused a mob scene at Red Lobster
> and is fighting off girls who want to get to know him better. He
> reportedly is auditioning for a part in a John Travolta film and has
> taped a guest spot on UPN's The Hughleys.
> Rudy. He couldn't catch anything but grief during his castaway
> days. But during a fishing tournament July 1 in his hometown of
> Virginia Beach, Rudy Boesch won the top prize for reeling in a
> 115-pound bluefin tuna after fighting the fish for more than an hour.
> Sean. Dr. Sean Kenniff writes guest columns for an alternative
> medicine Web site (www.highermindsradio.com ). A recent article:
> "Ginkgo Biloba: An ancient remedy for the failing mind." And he's
> signed for unspecified appearances on the CBS soap Guiding Light.
> Sonja. The ukulele-strumming music therapist was the first Survivor
> voted off the island, before viewers got to know her. Though she had
> to pass on a chance to endorse the Pax network (a CBS competitor),
> Sonja Christopher got her just desserts, literally. She told a TV
> critics gathering, "I got a complimentary dessert at a restaurant."
> And on Wednesday she was the guest of honor at the opening of a indoor
> water park and expansion of the Best Western Sterling Inn in Sterling
> Heights, Mich.
> Executive producer Mark Burnett: Burnett's newfound fame led to
> problems with unhappy fans. On July 25, Burnett obtained a restraining
> order against an activist who sent him e-mail threats criticizing him
> about the castaways' treatment of rats. In addition to producing
> Survivor 2, Burnett is working on a show that will follow candidates
> through Russian space camp.


If it weren't for the huge banner draped across the front of the convention center, you would think this week's Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles was a Macworld Expo convention in disguise. -- "Democrats Endorse Mac at Convention", by Brad Gibson, ZDNet http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/news/0,4586,2616975,00.html

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