Survivor: Cook Islands

2006, TV Show

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Survivor Champ Yul Kwon Takes on a New TV Adventure With America Revealed

Yul Kwon

Winning 2006's Survivor: Cook Islands was pretty tough for Yul Kwon — he beat out Ozzy Lusth! — but it wasn't nearly as stomach-churning as his new hosting gig on the four-part PBS series America Revealed (premiering Wednesday at 10/9c). Based on Britain From Above, the spectacularly filmed show takes a mostly birds-eye view of the U.S. as it tracks the systems that provide the U.S. population with food, energy, transportation and other stuff that makes the country run. "I'm scared of heights and I'm claustrophobic, and I also get severe motion sickness on planes so half the time we were filming I'm scared out of my mind," Kwon says with a laugh. "But it was worth it. This is a big epic series about America." We spoke with the Yale Law School grad, one of the most popular Survivor champs, about his new series, what he's been up to, and whether he'd give the reality show another chance.
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Coach and Ozzy Returning to Survivor: South Pacific

Benjamin "Coach" Wade and Ozzy Lusth

Third time's the charm?

Survivor also-rans Benjamin "Coach" Wade and Ozzy Lusth are the alums who will compete with the 16 newbies on Survivor: South Pacific, Entertainment Weekly reports.

Coach finished fifth on Tocatins and 12th on Heroes vs. Villains, while Lusth was runner-up on Cook Islands and came in ninth on Micronesia — Fans vs. Favorites.

Add Survivor: South Pacific to your Watchlist before the new season begins and never miss an episode

The two will be on different tribes — either Savaii or Upolu — which will be determined by ...
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Survivor's Parvati: There is No Way I Could Have Played Without Russell

Parvati Shallow, Survivor

Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains runner-up Parvati Shallow holds the record for most days of any Survivor castaway in history. But those 114 days of game play (in Cook Islands, Micronesia and current season) also made her a big target, forcing her to align with Russell Hantz. Parvati's close ties with Russell may have helped take her to the end, but being associated with one of the game's biggest Villains ultimately cost her the $1 million prize, which went to Sandra Diaz-Twine. Shallow talked with TVGuide.com about how she knew Sandra was a serious threat, how the Villains outlasted the Heroes and what she really thinks of Russell... read more

Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains: A Battle 10 Years in the Making

Survivor: Heroes and Villains

Survivor often has boiled down to power struggles between perceived good and evil. So it made sense to host/executive producer Jeff Probst to celebrate the show's 10-year anniversary and 20th season with the Heroes vs. Villains edition.

"Heroes vs. Villains was a great idea from the get-go and I think we all knew it," Probst says. "It captures what Survivor really has become about, the good versus the bad."

Jeff Probst offers glimpse of Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains

Signing on also proved to be a no-brainer for many former castaways, even past winners such as... read more

March 21, 2007: The Cinderella Man

Sometimes nothing is sweeter than hearing Jeff Probst utter three delicious words. Drop your buffs. There is promise in that command and for a season like this one where — oh god, don't make me rehash it! Let's just say that realigning Moto and Ravu was the most entertaining Survivor has been since Sundra and Becky faced off over a fire-making challenge in the Cook Islands. What would we do this season if Ravu and Moto had not mixed it up with a schoolyard pick? Now the poor-camp dwellers are Edgardo, Alex, Dreamz, Mookie, Rocky and Anthony. On the rich side of the island are Earl, Yau Man, Michelle, Cassandra, Boo and Stacy. Odd-woman out, Lisi, after a stint on Exile Island, later joined the poor camp. Ravu lucked out by having Edgardo, Alex and Dreamz join their team. All three come across as decent, open-minded guys. The kind of men who would call Rocky on his disparaging description of Anthony as effeminate and boost morale by catching fish when all previous efforts to do ... read more

I read with interest your ...

Question: I read with interest your comment that you long for the day when gay characters on TV are treated as completely unremarkable. It occurred to me that such an event has already occurred, earlier this year, on a little reality show called Survivor. In last fall's Cook Islands edition, the same edition that initially divided the tribes by ethnicity, two male contestants later revealed off camera that they were gay, but that topic did not even surface on air. It is hard to believe that the subject never came up on the island among the contestants, and that cameras did not capture it. So I found it refreshing that producer Mark Burnett did not deem the sexuality of either contestant to be remarkable enough to fashion (through editing) a little story point about it. Certainly the homosexuality of previous Survivor contestants (Richard Hatch and many others) had been story points in previous editions. So in a way, I found that the granddaddy of TV's current reality craze broke ground ... read more

My question has to do with ...

Question: My question has to do with the Emmys and reality TV: After two seasons of either awful (Family Edition) or dull Amazing Races, and the conclusion of one of the best Survivors in recent memory (how great was it to see four really likable and honorable people pull off a come-from-behind win and just be happy for one another?), can the reality-TV granddaddy finally pull off a win? Or do the Emmy voters not even watch those programs and just continue to award Amazing Race out of inertia and habit? Answer: Sorry, I'll have to disagree with you on that one. The last Race may have had an anticlimactic finish, but watching the teams race through new locales in the Far East this season was a lot more thrilling than watching tribes squabble on what looked like the exact same tropical beach as those from the last few years. (That said, I enjoyed the way the last Survivor ended as well.) This category is one of the few cases where I don't mind repeat wins year after year. Especially after ... read more

Yul's Tidings: The Survivor Cook Islands Champ Speaks Out!

Yul Kwon, Survivor: Cook Islands

On Sunday night's nail-biting Survivor: Cook Islands finale, Yul Kwon narrowly beat out tough competitor Ozzy by one vote to emerge as champion. The Stanford and Yale grad, who was often called "the puppet master" or "Godfather" by fellow players, was happy that his strategic game paid off and that he was able to pocket the million-dollar check. TVGuide.com spoke to Yul in the wee hours of the morning after his big win to find out how he's planning on spending his winnings, and why he looked so shell-shocked after being announced the sole survivor. TVGuide.com: Good morning, how are you doing? Yul Kwon: Good. I'm still sleep-deprived, but I'm living the dream. TVGuide.com: You looked stunned throughout th read more

December 17, 2006: The Aitu Four

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. It was a season that certainly had it’s ups and downs, but if Survivor:Cook Islands were a movie, it would be up for an Oscar.Ladies and gentlemen, for your consideration, I present the best of Cook Islands.The Best Challenges:Sure, we had a few recycled challenges, but someone on that staff got a shot of creativity that brought us some truly innovative, interesting and challenging competitions.These last two immunity challenges had me literally on the edge of my seat. Squarely in Aitu’s corner, it was near torture seeing Adam as a real threat to an all-Aitu final four.Ozzy’s come-from-behind win in the spider web/puzzle challenge was reality television at its best. It wasn’t his physical prowess that amazed me the most this time — I didn’t even know he had a brain until he wowed me by solving that compass-rose puzzle.Then there was the final immunity challenge. I loved that vanishing platform. How ... read more

December 14, 2006: The True Puppet Master

For some reason I really thought Parvati would end up in the finals. Not due to any true game play on her part, but merely out of some cosmic irony. Rarely have I seen a castaway who has done as little as she. I was wrong. Even with the seismic tremors at Aitu — Becky and Sundra maneuvering to oust Ozzy — the easily influenced Yul pulled his strings and chose Adam as the Raro member most worthy of staying.As much as Yul denies it, he is the top dog on the island, and he wears the Puppet Master title well. The thing is, even though he is the whole Survivor package — smart, strong, has ripped abs — he thinks too much and that overactive brain may just knock him out of the game. In case you hadn't noticed because you were distracted by Yul's mud-caked torso, there will be five people in the finals! Five relatively strong competitors. Seriously, who thought Sundra would last this long? After the first merge, Flicka was in a better position than the alliance-free ... read more

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Premiered: September 14, 2006, on CBS
Rating: TV-PG
User Rating: (9 ratings)
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Premise: The 13th edition of the reality series strands 20 people on the Cook Islands in the Pacific to vie for the $1 million grand prize. Initially, the castaways are divided into four ethnically diverse groups (African-American, Asian-American, Hispanic, white). Also, at least one player per episode is banished to a separate island to live alone, but on Exile Island there is a hidden immunity idol that, if found, can save a person from being voted out at tribal council.

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