Check out the stats for Survivor: Micronesia
's (premieres Thursday, Feb. 7, at 8 pm/ET on CBS) competitors, and hear what host Jeff Probst has to say about each one!
First, a few faves meet their matches...
Parvati Shallow and Mary Sartain
If out-flirting were part of the Survivor creed, Parvati Shallow, 25, would've walked away from the Cook Islands a million bucks richer. And as far as real estate company owner Mary Sartain, 29, is concerned, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. "Parvati's probably my favorite Survivor player," Sartain says. "I admire the way she worked the guys. I'm a pretty big flirt myself." Still, this time around, Shallow claims she's got a less shallow strategy in mind — sort of. "I've grown up a lot," she claims. "I want to make smart alliances. Some that might surprise you. But James is cute...."
Jonny Fairplay and Chet Welch
Who could forget Jonny Fairplay's despicable "Dead Grandma" ploy in the Pearl Islands? "That was the greatest moment in Survivor history, if not all of reality television," boasts the new dad, 33. If anyone could sink lower this season, it just might be Chet Welch, a 48-year-old Miss America beauty pageant coach. "One of our casting directors was like, 'He sabotaged me as a kid!'" Probst says. "Chet goes, 'Yep, that was me, and yep, I did it.'" But does either evil genius have a real shot at the mil? "Chet's gonna last a few episodes at best," Probst predicts. "And Fairplay has no chance of winning."
James Clement and Joel Anderson
Even though China's James Clement, 30, didn't play either of his two Immunity Idols and wound up voted out, his brute strength and infectious grin made him a fan fave. Clement may meet his match in another gentle giant, firefighter Joel Anderson, 32. "I'm here to provide a better life for my family," says the dedicated father of two sons, who has his wife's name tattooed on his ring finger. Probst says: "Joel's likable. He's big, but he's not a meathead. He gets it." Maybe this time, James will, too. "I gotta step up my game," he admits. "I made some mistakes last time I don't wanna make again." Amen!
Ozzy Lusth and Jason Siska
Cook Islands' runner-up Ozzy Lusth, 26, dazzled viewers with his agility and near-superhuman water skills. (He won five individual immunity challenges.) Could Jason Siska be Ozzy 2.0? Raised in the U.S. Virgin Islands, the 22-year-old student teacher is a trained scuba diver who couldn't stop gushing about — or comparing himself to — his favorite Survivor. "I love Ozzy," Siska said before the game. "I'm a fish, like he is." Probst's take? "Comparing yourself to Ozzy is a big comparison. Ozzy has proven how for real he is. It's gonna be interesting to see if Jason is as good as he says."
And the rest...
Name: Michael Bortone
Occupation: Los Angeles-based writer/actor
Behind the Game: The Boston-born Bortone –– aka "Mikey B" –– was originally passed over by CBS, but host Jeff Probst went to bat for him and ultimately changed the suits' minds. "I saw a live wire," Probst says. "He's interesting when he talks. I'm glad he's here."
Name: Tracy Hughes-Wolf
Occupation: Fredericksburg, Virginia-based commercial builder
Behind the Game: Though she admits winning the million would be "very nice," Hughes-Wolf insists she became a Survivor to prove she could, well, survive. "I've always been a thrill-seeker," she says. "And what bigger thrill is there than actually living the show you love?"
Name: Alexis Jones
Occupation: Beverly Hills-based motivational speaker
Behind the Game: Warning, fellow Survivors: It would be a mistake to buy into Jones' sweet demeanor.
Probst says: "When I first met her, she came in all excited [with] her little sundress on, and I did this whole impassioned speech [about] you gotta start focusing on how to play this game because there are 19 other people already out there playing. And she said, "Let me tell you how it really is." It was like a black widow turning. She proceeded to tell me how everybody thought she was this cute little girl and how she was gonna pull her claws out and pull people to shreds. She turned so fast, I went, 'F--k, I would be dead with you.'"
Name: Kathleen Sleckman
Occupation: Glen Ellyn, Illinois-based golf course vendor
Probst says: "Just to get it out of the way, I think Kathy is the first person out. Bless her heart, she just doesn't fit with this group. And she has no idea that she doesn't fit. Sometimes casting choices [are] beyond my understanding. I don't think Kathy should be out here. I think we had better people."
Name: Natalie Bolton
Occupation: Bartender/personal trainer from Los Angeles
Probst says: "Troubled. Natalie seems, on the surface, like she'd had a lot go on in her life. She's gonna tell you how it is, like it or not. I kind of respect that in an odd way. She can't help herself."
Name: Erik Reichenbach
Occupation: Ice cream scooper in — wait for it — Hell, Michigan
Behind the Game: With his bright green running shoes and Leif Garrettesque hair, the small-town Reichenbach could be out of his element. "Erik's never been anywhere," says Probst. "He's so excitable. I don't think he has any idea what's gonna happen out there. I hope he focuses on the game, making sure it's not him that's voted out."
Name: Yau-Man Chan
Previous season: Fiji
Known as: The lovable old man with mad survival skills who misplaced his trust
Probst says: "Yau-Man's an underdog. He doesn't appear like he could win this time, but you want him to."
Name: Ami Cusack
Previous season: Vanuatu
Known as: The conniver intent on building an all-female alliance
Probst says: "Ami's a little bit of a villain. She's also a [major] game-player. Ami will change the game."
Name: Cirie Fields
Previous season: Panama: Exile Island
Known as: The everywoman turned fan favorite
Behind the Game: When Fields learned that China's James Clement would also be returning, she got excited. Perhaps a little too excited. Fanning herself, she said with a laugh, "Oh my lord! James is fine. Why are they doing this to me? I am a married woman!"
Name: Amanda Kimmel
Previous season: China
Known as: The sidekick; she knew the game as well as winner Todd but she couldn't pull the trigger.
Behind the Game: After episodes of Survivor: China began airing and the budding fashion designer started getting recognized, she darkened her hair and chopped her bangs in an effort to go incognito.
Name: Eliza Orlins
Previous season: Vanuatu
Known as: The annoying girl who never shut up.
Behind the Game: Along with Parvati Shallow, Orlins may be the biggest "Huh?" to be invited back. But Probst swears she's worthy of a second chance. "Eliza was on our list from the beginning," he says. "She said controversial things, and she pushed a lot of buttons. Eliza will be in an alliance and she'll break it in the 11th hour. We want people like that. I think Eliza will prove why we invited her back."
Name: Jonathan Penner
Previous season: Cook Islands
Known as: The double-crosser who couldn't get along with Parvati
Behind the Game: Before starting Survivor: Micronesia, Penner seemed almost remorseful for his previous behavior. "I made some mistakes," he said. "I don't think you'll see me play the same game this time around." Says Probst, with a dimpled grin, "I don't buy it."
Check out more of Survivor: Micronesia in our Online Video Guide.
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